Bali News Update Week 31.

 

O Holy Site

Bali Police Investigating Misappropriation of Entry Fees Collected at Bali’s Tanah Lot Temple

 

The Bali Post reports that officers from the Anti-corruption Division (Tipikor) are investigating allegations that funds collected from tourists visiting the Tanah Lot Temple are being misappropriated. 

 

A team from the Bali Police headquarter visited the Pura Tanah Lot to investigate findings from State auditors that there was a shortfall in funds deposited by the Tanah Lot operators into the Tabanan Regency’s bank accounts during 2012. The estimated loss to the government is put at Rp. 256 million (US$25,600).

 

The lost funds are blamed on weak supervision by the Regency’s monetary regulators. “From the audit conducted by State Audit Board (BPK) there is a shortfall in funds deposited to the Regency, fostering the suspicion that payments were made outside the revenue sharing agreement between the Regency and the Traditional Village of Beraban,” an unnamed source told the Bali Post.

 

The audit report filed by the BPK for 2012 identified payments amounting to Rp. 256,265,543.48 that were not contemplated in the revenue-sharing agreement between the local village operators of Pura Tanah Lot and the Regency of Tabanan.

 

That same audit calculated Rp. 16.78 billion in total funds collected from sporting centers and recreation areas in Tabanan in 2013, with Rp. 13.9 billion originating from visitor fees collected at the Pura Tanah Lot.

 

The agreement between the Regency and the traditional village of Beraban signed in 2011 provided that 58% of the fees collected at Tanah Lot would be paid to the Regency of Tabanan.

 

Auditors found that Rp. 256 million due to the Regency under that agreement has gone missing.

 

Auditors also found that a payment of Rp. 463.345 million for a religious ceremony authorized by the Regent of Tabanan as the chairman of the Tanah Lot Management Board was not in accordance with the agreement between the Regency and the Village. 

 

Promoting Bali to the World

Bali and Beyond Travel Fair June 10-14, 2014

 

The Bali chapter of the Indonesian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (ASITA) has announced that an inaugural Bali and Beyond Travel Fair (BBTF) will take place in Bali June 10-14, 2014.

 

Organizers are targeting 200 domestic buyers, 100 foreign buyers and 10 domestic sellers for the event, according to a report published in The Bali Daily. 

 

It is not clear from the report why the participation of domestic sellers is slated to be so low or how sellers will be selected to participate.

 

The event will be spread over two areas of Bali. Business-to-business meeting will be held between travel operators in Nusa Dua while exhibitions and promotional activities will be held in Kuta.

 

Plans also call for a series of domestic and international road shows to be held in the period leading up to the BBTF in order to promote the Bali travel event.

 

According to Ketut Ardhana, the chairman of ASITA-Bali, the June 2014 event will be the first-ever international travel event sponsored by Bali with past efforts limited to more modest tabletop promotions.

 

The Bali chapter of the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI-Bali) has thrown their support to BBTF, with its chairman Tjokorda Oka Artha Sukawati saying: ??“We really support this event, because it is in line with BPPD’s [Bali Promotion Board] function. By engaging other regions in Indonesia [beyond Bali], this event will be able to strengthen Indonesia’s positive tourism image.”

 

 

Service Above Net

22nd Rotary Club Bali Nusa Dua Charity Tennis Tournament August 24 – September 1, 2013

 

Bali’s longest-running and most popular charity tennis returns with the 22nd Annual Rotary Club Bali Nusa Dua Charity Tennis Tournament August 24 – September 1, 2013.

 

Famous for both its high quality of play and the substantial funds raised on behalf of Bali charities, this year’s event  will raise funds to provide health and human services for poor and disadvantaged children on Bali and nearby islands. 

 

 

The 2013 tournament will be held earlier this year to avoid clashes with the APEC Summit and Miss World events.

 

“Since Rotary Year 1994-1995 Rotary Club Bali Nusa Dua (RCBND) has provided over 1,360 cleft palate and cranial facial operations to underprivileged children and young adults on Bali and surrounding islands” said Gary Phair, President of Rotary Club Nusa Dua 2013-2014. 

 

“Last year we raised in excess of Rp. 75,000,000, and hope to top that this year. As always, 100% of the proceeds will be used to provide craniofacial surgery such as hare-lip and cleft-palate operations  to assist children on Bali” he added.

 

The 22nd Annual Rotary Bali Charity Tennis Tournament will take place at the tennis courts of the Nikko Bali Resort and Spa, Bali Tourism Development Corporation (B.T.D.C.) and Nusa Dua Beach Hotel & Spa. 

 

The tournament is open to the public with four categories of play: Junior, Amateur, Senior and Open. Registration is open on the first of August, and will close on August 18t, 2013, with "Draws" scheduled for August 21. 

 

Registration fees start from Rp. 100,000 (US$10).

 

Last year 120 players joined the tournament and this year's RC Bali Nusa Dua’s Tennis Committee is expecting a record numbers of participants.

 

Draws, match times and locations can be accessed online at www.rotarybalitennis.com 

 

In conjunction with the Tournament an on-line auction will also be held.

 

Telephone +62-(0) 821 4618 1454 or +62-(0) 817 351 312.

 

Sanur Village Festival VIII

Spirit of Heritage Adopted as Theme of 8th Sanur Village Festival September 24-28, 2013

 

The 8th edition of the Sanur Village Festival celebrating “A New Spirit of Heritage” will take place at the Maisonette area of the Inna Grand Bali Beach Hotel in Sanur September 24-28, 2013.

 

The Sanur Village Festival will champion “the new spirit of  heritage” hoping to attract international delegations from the APEC Summit to the Sanur-based event.

 

The theme of this year’s festival is “Segara Giri” reflecting Sanur’s location and its link with the nearby ocean. The theme also reflects the Sanur community’s commitment to preserve and protect nature.

 

Organizers promise this year’s event will be teeming with cultural activities, a much-anticipated food festival, water sports, cooking demonstrations, environmental conservation initiatives, exhibitions, and an entire range of entertainment offerings.

 

Blending traditional and contemporary Balinese culture, Sanur’s streets will host colorful floats and “thousands” of parade participants in a display of music, light and color that will wow audiences with a showstopper of a parade, full of music, light, and color!

 

More than 20 separate events are planned over the four days of the Festival.

 

Making High Tea Fashionable

Fashion Designs and High Tea on Bali’s Famed Kuta Beach at Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort

 

Establishing a tradition of quiet refinement and civility, the Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort has launched an afternoon tea experience with Dilmah Tea. 

 

To launch “Kuta Lazy Afternoon Tea” served in the Hotel’s lounge each day from 2:00 – 5:00 pm, an afternoon tea featuring SATU and the creations of Bali's finest fashion designers was held on Friday, July 19, 2013. 

 

As shown on Balidiscovery.com, the afternoon event showcased the fashion designs of Ali Charisma and Natasha Welsh.

 

The two designers highlighted their distinctive themes. Ali Charisma exhibited the concept of Aruna and Ayu, derived from the Sanskrit language, meaning radiance and beauty. Meanwhile, Natasha paraded her distinctive bohemian chic collection.

 

“We are truly excited to organize the first fashion gathering with SATU, as we have shared the same passion to provide an idyllic melting pot. The difference lies only on its standpoint. While Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort is aiming to be Bali’s best gathering place for global travelers, SATU has the vision to be the home of Bali’s finest designers by showcasing fine designs from the internationally-known to the upcoming young designers”, said Dario Orsini, General Manager of Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort.

 

Dilmah’s Afternoon Tea at The Lounge – Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort is available daily from 2 p.m. until 5 with fine Dilmah Tea’s or Dilmah Tea cocktails, accompanied with refreshing tea-inspired canapés and free-flow of fresh scones. 

 

The afternoon tea menu with Dilmah Tea’s sells at Rp. 149.000++ (US$18) per person or afternoon tea and one-hour ?ow of Dilmah Tea cocktails at IDR 299.000++ (US$36.20per person.

 

For more information or reservations, please call ++62-(0)361-846 5555.

 

Let’s Get Ready to Rimba

Rimba Resort and Spa Bali to Open in September 2013 Featuring Innovative Design Concepts Including Rooftop Bar

 

When the new Rimba Resort & Spa opens later this year adjacent to its sister-hotel AYANA Resort and Spa, Bali it will feature an innovative rooftop bar and restaurant.

 

Designed by the Bangkok-based consultancy dpw/next for food and beveridge, the new hotel's facilities are being prepared to become an “ultra-glam” gathering place with the rooftop bar UNIQUE serving as the centerpiece for outlets that include a roof-top swimming pool, an all-day dining facility and a gourmet bakery.

 

dwp|next's unique rooftop bar and restaurant concept for the new Rimba Resort & Spa in Bali is due to open in 2013 under the management of the Capella Hotel Group

 

The RIMBA Jimbaran Bali is part of the next phase in the evolution of the award-winning AYANA Resort and Spa, Bali, as its sister hotel. 

 

RIMBA Jimbaran Bali will offer another unique guest experience within the world-class cliff top property sector.

 

Set for a September 2013 opening, RIMBA Jimbaran Bali has 297 rooms and suites, to expand on AYANA's existing 368 rooms and villas. 

 

The 8-hectare resort is located within AYANA's 77-hectare grounds.

 

Bali Property: A Bubble That's Ready to Burst

Bank Indonesia Says Bali’s High Property Prices are Not Sustainable

 

Solopos.com reports that the Bali branch of Bank Indonesia will continue to try to control real estate prices on the Island in a sector the Bank views as “on alert” against a possible bubble, capable of bursting and sending prices tumbling.

 

Dwi Pranoto, the head of Bank Indonesia – Bali and Nusa Tenggara said the rapid and significant increase in real estate prices from year to year requires caution in the face of high costs, especially in South Bali.

 

The close supervision of property prices by Bank Indonesia is needed to prevent a bubble economy. Bank Indonesia’s current view is that properties are priced at unsustainably high levels.

 

Continuing, Dwi described how real estate brokers in Bali are involved in speculation. He contends that the growing bubble built by speculation resembles past bubbles that have occurred in Jakarta, South Sulawesi, Batam and Riau. “In fact, the price of land in Bali, in real terms, is not so high,” Dwi said.

 

The Bank Indonesia executive blamed the current spike in property prices in Bali on brokers who justify higher prices with the completion of various infrastructure projects, including the Island’s first toll way, the underpass at Simpang Siur and the renovation of the Ngurah Rai Airport.

 

To try to moderate Bali’s property prices Bank Indonesia is reviewing loan to value ratios against loans extended by Indonesian banks. Changes in the current loan-to-value ratios will be introduced by Bank Indonesia in September 2013.

 

Meanwhile, Bali business interests are urging the government to quickly define areas reserved for tourism development in the face of diminishing land areas remaining for shared public use and other purposes. 

 

Government Failing its Regulatory Responsibilities

 

The chairman of Real Estate Indonesia-Bali (REI-Bali), Putu Dewa Selawa, said the increasing loss of land for development projects demands that clear zoning laws be implemented as soon as possible. Developers need clear guidelines on lands available for development and lands reserved as no-build green zones.

 

At the same time, Selawa, called on the government to set aside areas for essential services, such as hospitals and places of higher learning. The real estate businessman reminded the government that they are failing in their role as a regulator by not clarifying zoning regulations.

 

Selawa acknowledged the need for a role by foreign investors in property development in Bali, while, at the same time, insisting the role of foreign property investors must be controlled by firm rules in order to prevent losses to Indonesia.

 

He said that a lack of socialization regarding no-build green zones in Bali has resulted in people purchasing land in these areas.

 

Tourism operators are also urging the government to delineate tourism zones, residential areas, and zones for government or public use in order to improve the business and investment climate in Bali.

 

SIA to Bali Four Times Daily

Singapore Intensifies and Expands its Indonesian Flight Network

 

Friday, July 26, 2013 will go down as an epic day in Singapore Airline’s long history of service to the Republic of Indonesia.

 

On that date:

Singapore Airlines added a fourth daily flight between Singapore and Denpasar, Bali.

Singapore Airlines assumed one of two daily flights between Singapore and Surabaya operated by its regional subsidiary Silk Air, creating a new destination for the Singapore flag carrier.

Singapore Airlines introduced a ninth daily service between Jakarta and the Island Republic.

With 63 flights each week, Jakarta remains Singapore Airline’s top destination in the carrier’s network as measured by the number of flights operated. With 28 flights per week, Bali also ranks as a leading destination for SIA. 

 

“The Indonesian economy is growing and this has increased demand for both business and leisure travel,” said Ms Lee Wen Fen, SIA’s Acting Senior Vice President Marketing Planning.

 

Continuing, Lee said: “Indonesia is an especially important market for the SIA Group, as demonstrated by SIA’s new services to Surabaya, our additional flights to Bali and Jakarta, and SilkAir’s new services to Semarang and Makassar. These new flights will provide even more options to our customers for travel to and from Indonesia, as well as for travel beyond Singapore to the many other destinations in our global network.” 

 

Singapore Airline’s extensive worldwide network means that long sought-after increase in seat capacity to Denpasar will boost access to the island from the all major worldwide markets served by the SIA.

 

Que Pasa, Pak Winasa?

Gede Winasa, Former Regent of Jembrana, Sentenced to 6 Years Prison By Supreme Court in Compost Corruption Case

 

I Gede Winasa, the former Regent of Jembrana in Bali, has been dealt a crippling blow by the Indonesian Supreme Court that has overturned an acquittal handed down on July 1, 2011, and imposed a 6-year prison sentence, a fine of Rp. 500 million (US$50,000) and demanded compensation to the State amounting to Rp. 2 billion (US$200,000).

 

Failure to pay the fine will add 10 months to the 6-year sentence and failure to pay the required compensation will result in the forfeiture of personal assets for auction by the State.

 

Winasa conviction on appeal is in connection with corruption in the procurement of composting equipment during his term as Jembrana's leader.

 

The reversal of fortune for the former Regent of Jembrana was announced on Thursday, July 25, 2013 and was in response to State Prosecutors appeal of Winasa’s acquittal in 2011.

 

Claiming to be awaiting a formal copy of the Supreme Court’s ruling, prosecutors in Negara, Bali were not prepared to comment on Winasa’s case and the imposition of the prison term and fine.

 

Similarly, when Nusa Bali called three separate hand phone number used by Winasa for communicating with the media, all three numbers were inactive. A SMS sent to Winasa by the newspaper remain unanswered.

 

The decision of the Supreme Court reinstated the original penalties sought by State Prosecutors in the original trial. The original “not guilty” verdict handed down in 2011 shocked local observers in light of the fact that Winasa’s four associates in the original trial were all declared “guilty” and given sentences ranging between 1.5 and 6 years.

 

It remains unclear when Winasa will be taken into custody by prosecutors to begin serving his prison sentence.

 

Iva Farida the Leader of Sales & Marketing

Iva Farida Heading Sales and Marketing at Aston Bali Beach Resort and Spa

 

Aston Bali Beach Resort & Spa has announced the appointment of Iva Farida to head its sales and marketing and business initiatives divisions. Farida will also play a role in the imminent rebranding of the property as the Grand Aston Bali Beach Resort.

 

Prior to joining Aston Bali, Iva served as Director of Sales & Marketing in several international hotel chains including Anantara Seminyak, Nikko Bali and Paradiso Hotel Group. She had also held senior management positions at the Mandarin Oriental Jakarta, Grand Hyatt Jakarta and Papandayan Bandung. ??

 

In 2004, Iva also started her own event organization company.

 

“Iva not only brings a solid history of hospitality industry knowledge, sales excellence skills and strong marketing savvy -- but she is also a well respected, results-oriented team leader,” said Ian Cameron, General Manager at Aston Bali. “We are thrilled to welcome her in our team.” ??

 

Iva is a graduate of West Coast Institute of Management and Technology in Perth, Australia, with a Master of Business Administration degree in Hospitality Management and Business. 

 

Markets for Sharing

Weekly Sunday Market Being Launched on Bali’s Sanur Beach

 

Commencing Sunday, August 11, 2013, and scheduled to operate on a weekly basis thereafter, a Sunday Market featuring farmer’s produce, traditional crafts and general merchandise will take place from 9:00 am until 3:00 pm at the Sand Beach Club & Restaurant located on the beach and accessed via Jalan Danau Tamblingan and the Sindhu Beach Esplanade.

 

 

Activities for children will form a part of each Sunday Market with showers and change facilities also available for those wanting to enjoy the beach in front of the Sand Beach Club and Restaurant.

 

40 vendor’s tables are available under tented covers for Rp. 200,000 each (US$20).

 

For more information telephone +62-(0)8121 888 33 43.

 

Nusa Dua a Cash Cow for Badung Tax Collectors

Bali’s Nusa Dua Complex A Major Tax Revenue Generator in South Bali

 

Bali Daily (The Jakarta Post) reveals that billions of rupiahs are paid in tax revenues by the starred hotels located within the Bali Tourism Development Corporation Complex (BTDC).

 

Ketut Gede Sudiarta, head of tax collection for the Badung regency, confirms that Rp. 20 – Rp 30 billion (US$2-3 million) is collected every month from hotels and restaurants within BTDC. In 2009, this translated to Rp. 667.11 billion (US$66.7 million), increasing to Rp. 969.34 billion (US$96.9 million) in 2011 and Rp. 1.22 trillion (US$122 million) in 2012.

 

The more than 3,000 rooms within Nusa Dua form part of a development commenced in the early 1970s to create a tourism enclave as part of Bali’s overall plans for tourism development.

 

The complex is also home to two large international convention centers.

 

A spokesman for BTDC, Purnama Damayanti, confirmed 20 star-rated hotels and villas with a total of 3,643 rooms, two convention centers, a medical center, an art museum, a theatre, shopping center and numerous restaurants. The BTDC is in the process of adding 1,080 rooms to be opened over the coming months.

 

A Capital Idea

Bali Legislators Calls for Relocation of Province’s Capital to East Bali

 

A member of the Bali House of Representatives (DPR-Bali), I Gede Sumarjaya Linggih, has put forth the ideas of relocating the capital city of the province from Denpasar to Kubu in the Karangasem Regency.

 

Quoted by the State News Agency Antara, the Golkar party legislator said: 

“Up until now, the development in Bali has been centralized in the south. Efforts are needed to equalize (development) and one way is by moving the capital from Denpasar to Kubu.”

 

Linggih cites the extreme poverty of the people living in East Bali due to the lack of employment opportunities that continue to be concentrated in the Island’s south.

 

“This is a form of injustice. It is a sin if leaders do not provide justice and equality (of opportunity) in development,” said Linggih at a celebration of the election of Made Mangku Pastika and Ketut Sudikerta as governor and deputy-governor of Bali.

 

For this reason, Linggih also support the policies of the provincial government of Bali in isuing a moratorium of new hotels in South Bali that includes the regency of Badung and the capital city of Denpasar.

 

“If the development of hotels is not stopped, the investors will continue to build hotels in that area,” said Linggih who hails from the regency of Buleleng.

 

Linggih, also known by the name of Damer, cited the minimum quality of health services in Bali's east and north.

 

Linggih called on the government to abandon plans to build medical facilities in Badung regency, suggesting this task is best left to the private sector. He continued by urging the provincial government to focus instead on developing Bali’s east and north.

 

As regards moving the location of Bali’s capital, he suggested that private investors be involved in the process in order to reduce the need for State funds.

 

Bali’s capital moved from Singaraja in North Bali to Denpasar in 1953.

 

Making Light of the Dark Side

Indonesia Institute Reveals that Bali Does NOT Rank Among the Most Dangerous Destinations for Australian Holidaymakers

 

The Australian-based Indonesia Institute recently published its own rebuttal to media portrayals of Bali as having a “dark side” – incorrectly suggesting that Bali is among the most dangerous destinations for Australian holidaymakers.

 

Citing data from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) that records Australian deaths abroad over the past year, Bali did not rank anywhere near the top of the list for the deadliest destinations.

 

Deaths of Australian traveling abroad in selected countries over the past 12 months:

Thailand - 111

Philippines - 68

Greece -  60

Vietnam - 54

US - 51

Indonesia - 48 (Bali: Approximately 40)

Germany - 41

Hong Kong - 40

China - 38

UK - 28

The Indonesia Institute said that many Australians visit Bali without travel insurance; drink in excess while on the island; ride motorbikes dressed in tea shirts, boardies and thongs; and ostentatiously splash large sums of money around. 

 

The report continued: “Bali is suffering from poor infrastructure, pollution, corruption and simply too many tourists (rather than 'travelers') who treat this island as if it is their own backyard. It's not.”

 

Concluding, the Indonesia Institute says: “But despite all this, over 99% of Australians come home safely having had a really good holiday...even though we don't always deserve to do so!"

 

Delays Expected

Government to Close Bali Airport for Extended Periods October 5 – 9, 2013 to Accommodate APEC VIP Flight Movements

 

The Indonesian Ministry of Transportation via the Directorate General of Air Communications have formally announced a closure schedule for Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport in connection with the APEC CEO Summit taking place in Bali in early October 2013.

 

In order to facilitate the arrival and departure of private aircraft carrying heads of state and official delegations for the APEC Summit, Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport will be partially closed.

 

Official Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) have been issued to the worldwide aviation community advising the following schedule of airport closures:

October 5, 2013 Closed from 10:00 until 16:00 hours

October 6, 2013 Closed from 10:00 until 20:00 hours

October 8, 2013 Closed from 10:00 until 20:00 hours

October 9, 2013 Closed from 10:00 until 16:00 hours

Travelers passing through the Bali Airport on the above dates should expect significant disruption in scheduled airline service.

 

All Creatures Great and Small

Bali Taman Safari & Marine Park to Host Animal Training and Enrichment Conference December 1-5, 2013 – ATEC 2013

 

The Taman Safari Indonesia Group – who operate the popular Bali Safari and Marine Park – is well known for its network of world-class safari parks across Indonesia. Less well known and acknowledged, however, is the Group’s commitment carried out “behind the scenes” in support of animal management and wildlife conservation.

 

Animal training and enrichment are topics of increasing importance among those working with captive animal populations. Substantial time and resources are being dedicated in the search of groundbreaking and innovative techniques for zoos, sanctuaries and animal parks that will enrich the lives and provide better care to their animal residents. 

 

Considered a critical component in animal husbandry by all “good zoos,” animal training and enrichment are the zoo industry’s tools that go ‘hand in hand’ to make the lives of captive animals more enriching and stimulating. 

 

Training is critical to enrichment and also to the evolution of understanding, on how to provide ‘best care’ for the precious living creatures entrusted to keeper’s care.

 

Taman Safari Indonesia is taking their commitment to animal management and care a step further, by hosting the very first ‘Animal Training & Enrichment Conference’ - ATEC2013, in Bali December 1-5, 2013.

 

Slated to attract leaders from the Southeast Asia regional zoo industry and international experts in the field of animal husbandry, the conference will also host international experts will provide training and professional development opportunities for zoo professionals.

 

ATEC 2013 will be headquartered at the Bali Safari and Marine Park with an exiting program of presentations, expert speakers and social networking opportunities on tap over the five-day event.

 

Registration and applications for the submission of papers and expert presentations are now openon-line  for ATEC 2013 in Bali with details available at the [ATEC 2013 Website] 

 

Early bird discounts available for delegate registrations before September 30, 2013.

 

The Governor’s Side of the Story

Bali Governor Standing Firm in His Support of Benoa Bay Reclamation Project

 

Bali’s Governor Made Mangku Pastika made a spirited defense of a recommendation he issued on behalf of PT Tirta Wahana Bali International (PT TWBI) for the development and reclamation of an island in Benoa Bay located within a protected mangrove forest area.

 

Reported by Radar Bali, the governor made the following points:

Pastika defended the reclamation project covering 838 hectares in Benoa Bay as being of critical importance to the people of Bali.

The Governor vehemently denied as without basis corruption allegations filed with the Indonesian Corruption Eradication Agency (KPK) that he had received a bribe in connection with his support of the reclamation project. 

Pastika explained that the planned reclamation will actually generate new land owned by the province and will yield more than 400 hectare in new forested areas.

The operating license to be granted to PT TWBI is for a fixed period of 30 years, extendable for an additional 20 years, meaning the new land mass created will eventually be under the complete ownership and control of the people of Bali.

Denied claims that the recommendation granted to PT TWBI is in violation with existing land-use laws, insisting those who drafted the recommendation were lawyers well versed in the law.

Responded to those saying the new project will transgress his office’s moratorium on new hotel projects in Bali, saying that Bali is not oversupplied with accommodation. In a reversal of an earlier stance on accommodation supply in Bali, Pastika now says calculations of the supply and demand in hotel rooms done by the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI) are in error.

In a move to achieve a consensus and quell the ongoing debate over the reclamation planned for Benoa Bay, Governor Pastika will invite all interested parties to an open meeting to discuss the project planned for August 3, 2013.

 

Meeting with Sukses

Protests Continue from Displaced Traders at Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport Vowing a ‘Fight till the Death’ to Continue their Business Activities

 

Hundreds of traders operating from Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport, members of the Airport Traders Association (P2B), took to the streets in protest and on occasion disrupted traffic leading to the airport on Friday, July 26, 2013.

A group of protesting traders, estimated at 500 by Seputarbali.com, briefly occupied the offices of Grama Vikash Kendra (GVK) - commercial space consultants/managers for the airport. 

 

Led by the chairman of P2B, I Wayan Sukses, protestors brought posters on a “long march” that slowed traffic on Jalan Ngurah Rai Bypass before arriving at the GVK office.

 

The traders were protesting the increase in rental rates for retail space to take effect with the inauguration of the renovated airport later this year. Wayan Sukses told the press, “We will continue to protest until we meeting the head of the consultant company for the airport and our demands for relocation (within the renovated airport) are met.”

 

Sukses complained that the Airport’s Management, PT Angkasa Pura I, had issued promises to the traders who are members of P2B that they would be relocated and accommodated in the renovated airport facility. 

 

The promised relocation, says Sukses, has yet to occur, adding, “The main point is this: we will continue to fight, even until a ‘Puputan’ (a ritual battle to the death), to defend or rights as the traders who have operated in the past from the airport.”

 

The latest protest is the latest in a series of demonstrations aimed at retaining local traders right to operated from the airport. The members of P2B contend that they are being quietly evicted from the new airport and are being denied their promised new space for retail sales in the new airport facility.

 

The Indian company in charge of the management of retail space at the airport, GVK, has set rental rates, bonds and minimum sales targets that local traders feel is beyond their financial and merchandising capabilities.

 

Following an earlier protest, an accord was reached between PT Angkasa Pura and P2B that assured that the traders working before the Airport’s renovation would find space to continue their businesses in the renovated air gateway.

 

Grand Nikko Bali Hotel

Nikko Bali Resort and Spa Rebrands as Grand Nikko Bali

 

JAL Hotels Co Ltd, part of the luxury Okura Hotel Group, has announced the launch of the Grand Nikko Brand.

 

JAL Hotel says that Grand Nikko will be the new face representing a very upscale brand; an extension of the existing Nikko brand. JAL Hotels believes that this brand will bring the benefits of synergy from a marketing perspective, embracing sales and marketing opportunities, and operating efficiencies to maximize guests’ comfort, thus anchoring the group to the upper-scale luxury traveler within the emerging high-end hospitality market. 

 

From among 51 hotels and resorts worldwide operating under the HotelJALCity and Nikko Hotels brands, Nikko Bali Resort and Spa has been officially chosen to become the Grand Nikko Bali. 

 

Since the resort first opened its doors in 1996, the property has invested millions of dollars to renovate the resort starting in 2006 with the building of Wiwaha, a cliff-top glass wedding venue, the Nikko Club Lounge, an outdoor beach venue Serenity and The Shore Restaurant and Bar – the Resort’s- award winning beach front restaurant. 

 

Following the initial renovation, a refurbishment followed of all 389 guest rooms, the Benkay Japanese Restaurant, main lobby, gift shop and Brasserie des Célébrités. In 2012, the Resort introduced its new ballroom - a multi-purpose function room that can accommodate up to 760 people with floor to ceiling glass walls that provides a dramatic view of the Indian Ocean, an open-air wedding gazebo “Kamita” and luxury villas. 

 

This ongoing commitment to excellence and upgrades paved the way for Nikko Bali Resort and Spa’s elevation to Grand Nikko status.

 

To celebrate its rebranding, on July 15, 2013, more than 300 guests were invited to be a part of the official launch of Grand Nikko Bali. Attending the event were members of Bali’s diplomatic community, travel industry members, media and the president and CEO of JAL HOTELS, Marcel P. Van Aelst and the corporate executive officer of JAL HOTELS, Hiroshi Oishi.

 

An Idea Worth Picking Up On

Governor Pastika Tells Nusa Penida Community that He Will Trade One Kilogram of Rice for Every Kilogram of Plastic Refuse

 

During an official visit to Nusa Penida Island, located a short distance of Bali’s southern coast, governor Made Mangku Pastika was so disturbed by the site of plastic refuse scattered along his journey that he spontaneously included an unexpected offer in a speech delivered during a town hall meeting at Balai Desa Batu Nunggul on Saturday, July 27, 2013.

 

As reported by Seputarbali.com, the Governor challenged his audience to join his personal war on plastic trash. “I will replace 1 kilogram of plastic trash with 1 kilogram of rice,” Pastika told his large audience. The governor then immediately shelled out Rp. 10 million (US$1,000) of his own money, leaving the fund available and on hand for instant redemption on his promise.

 

People gathering plastic trash and selling it to recyclers are normally only paid Rp. 600 (US$0.06) per kilogram, leaving the governor having to cover the Rp. 9.400 (US$0.94) shortfall needed to buy the promised kilogram of rice.

 

At the same time, the Governor called on the people of Nusa Penida to keep their island home clean and tidy.

 

The chairman of the Nusa Penida Foundation, Nyoman Sudita, pledged to respond to the Governor’s challenge and organize the local community to rid itself of unsightly and unhealthy plastic trash.

 

Bad Luck for Big Trucks

Bali Police to Ban Large Trucks and Heavy Vehicles from Roads During Peak Lebaran Travel Period

 

The Bali traffic police have announced that heavy vehicles and trucks not engaged in the carriage of essential commodities will be banned from operating on the island’s road from August 4 until approximately August 8, 2013,  in order to reduce traffic congestion.

 

Quoted by the State News Agency Antara, the director of Bali’s traffic police, police commissioner Beno Lauhenapessy said, “We will prohibit trucks from H-4 (four days before Lebaran) until one day after Lebaran. Exceptions will be granted to trucks carrying essential commodities.”

 

In this instance, essential commodities include trucks loaded with foodstuffs, postal trucks and trucks carrying fuel.

 

Beno's officers, in cooperation with transportation agency officers, will be stationed at key points acrosss Bali monitoring the flow of people traveling to their home villages and back over the longest holiday period of the year.

 

Nationwide the Ministry of Transportation had previously announced the large trucks with more than two axels or weighing more than 16 tons will be banned from highways from H-4 until August 8 

 

In anticipation of large traffic volumes, police have prepared expanded parking area at Padang Bai in East Bali and Gilimanuk in West Bali to accommodate vehicles and drivers waiting their turn at the main ferry crossings to Lombok and Java.

 

Additional ticket booths have also been set up at both locations in anticipation of the coming crush of travelers.

 

Half Way to 3 Million Visitors in 2013

Bali By the Numbers: Bali Ends the First Half of 2013 with 9% More Foreign Visitors than 2012

 

June 2013 saw 275,617 foreign tourists visit Bali, an increase month-on-month of 15.7% over the 238,296 foreign visitors that came to Bali in June 2012.

 

On a cumulative basis for the first half of the year, arrivals have reached 1,492,971 – an improvement of 9% over the total foreign visitors who came to Bali in the first half of 2012.

 

With a full six months of visitors under our belt, it is now possible to more boldly extrapolate that by the end of 2013 a record 3.15 million foreign tourists will have come to Bali, providing the current overall growth rate of 9% is sustained untill the end of the year.

 

Foreign Arrivals by Major Markets

AUSTRALIA – continues to be the leader for tourist visitors. The strong growth experienced in Australian arrivals over the past half-decade, however, now appears to be cooling with arrivals up only 1.37% for January-June 2013.

PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA – PRC arrivals have increased 15.09% in the first half of 2013, firmly cementing the Mainland Chinese market’s role as the second largest producer of foreign visitors to Bali – a ranking held by the Chinese for the past three years.

JAPAN – After falling into the doldrums, Japanese arrivals are on a rebound, responding to added flight capacities and more focused promotion. Japanese arrivals increased 17.87% during the first six months of 2013 totaling 96,013.

MALAYSIA – Cheap flights, and lots of them, continue to boost Malaysian visitors to Bali. With 93,200 visitors from Malaysia during the first six months of 2013, Malaysian arrivals are up12.29% and stand poised to potentially push Japan out of third place in the race for foreign source markets to Bali.

SINGAPORE – Singapore arrivals are up 15.28% for the first half of 2013 at 63,510. Will an additional flight by Singapore Airlines help to boost Singapore arrival numbers even higher?

SOUTH KOREAN – South Korean visitors – on a cumulative basis – declined 1.86% during the first six months of the year.

TAIWAN – Taiwanese visitors are on the mend, improving January – June 2013 by 8.99%.

UNITED KINGDOM – The news is not good from the U.K. with visitors down 7.41% from the U.K. during the six months of 2013. Will these declining numbers in U.K. visitors divert Garuda Indonesia from its plans to recommence flights to the U.K?

UNITED STATES – In 9th place among all source markets for Bali visitors, American tourists are up 7.77% for the first half of 2013.

FRANCE – The French are operating on something of a plateau with an increase of only 1.34% for visitors January-June 2013.

RUSSIA – Russian visitors have increased a respectable 7.57% during the first half of 2013.

GERMANY- Despite any economic woes in Germany, German tourists continue to visit Bali, improving 9.94% January-June 2013.

INDIA– India is increasingly a player in Bali tourism with arrivals January to June up 23.56% totaling 31,529.

THE NETHERLANDS – Dutch visitors declined 1.47% during the first six months of 2013 and have been supplanted in the rankings by India.

 

Source of all updates ;  © Bali Discovery Tours. Articles may be quoted and reproduced if attributed to http://www.balidiscovery.com.

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