Bali News Update week 41 N.

Making Yourself Understood in Bali

Balinese On-Line Wiki Dictionary Now Available


A free innovative multi-media Balinese-Indonesian-English Wiki dictionary is now available to people in Bali and throughout the world.


The Wiki dictionary uses social media to save Balinese, a language threatened, somewhat ironically, by social media.


In recent years, Balinese has dwindled down to use by only about a quarter of native Balinese, the result of globalization, nationalization, and social media taking its usual toll on a minority language.  With Balinese, where speakers rely on who they are, who they are speaking to, and what they are speaking about to choose the right level of Balinese language, the faceless Internet presents a serious problem, encouraging Balinese posters to use the national – and status neutral – Indonesian rather than commit a cultural faux pas in Balinese.


But with the new Wiki dictionary in Balinese language, social media is being used to re-energize Balinese by promoting pride in the language through an international web presence and by providing a tool for anyone with internet access to contribute to its sustainability and benefit from the information provided. 


Nala Antara of Bali’s Udayana University and the Ganesha Education University who, together with other universities within and outside of Bali who will oversee and edit the Wiki dictionary explains:  “Technology will be our bridge to the future.  The Wiki Balinese-English-Indonesian dictionary will help everyone in Bali learn and speak Balinese alongside Indonesian, so that we two strong languages co-existing: the language of our people and the language of our nation. The Wiki allows the people of Bali to actively take part in this project to take pride in their participation.”


Ayu Mandala from BASAbali who are working to connect the Linguist team with the Balinese public says, “with this Wiki, we can make the Balinese language well known throughout Bali and throughout the world.  Wiki technology gives free access to everyone and provides an opportunity for the public to be part of the action." 


A small firm called TinyMighty, based in a remote corner of Spain, created the Wiki interface. It is particularly unique in its ability able to handle the different registers of Balinese – something specific to the Balinese language – but it also gives real life examples of word usage from Balinese literature, newspapers and other media, the old and endangered Balinese script and YouTube videos of native speakers.


Alissa Stern of BASAbali hopes that the Wiki will not only inspire people to learn and use Balinese, but that Balinese can be a model how other threatened languages in the rest of the world might benefit from a collaboration of expert linguists and the general public.




Terminal Folly

Bali Update Reader Provides an In-depth Analysis of Why Bali’s New Airport Fails to Please


A recent article recorded the unbridled pride of the CEO of PT Angkasa Pura Tommy Soetomo Happy Landings Galore - regarding Bali’s remodeled airport. Subsequently we received very pointed retorts to Mr. Soetomo's comments  from readers that were shared in We Get Mail . This, in turn, prompted another reader - Martyn Smith to share his thoughtful comments.


Here’s what Martyn had to offer for the benefit of Tommy Soetomo - the man in charge of the management of Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport:




“Might I add my observations to those recorded in your 28th September issue in respect of the captioned subject?”


“In my opinion the planning and space standards implemented in the design of the new airport are seriously flawed.


For example:

In virtually all recently constructed airports (and many older ones), when you drive up to the departures or check-in area, you arrive at a drop-off location where you can see directly into these areas, see where the relevant airline check-in counters are positioned (there is usually signage in the drop-off area to assist in this) and stop in front of the relevant entrance door. The check-in counters are usually close to the entry doors.


You can also enter the check-in hall through any number of entry doors and pick one closest to the counter you want. This works well. Not so at Ngurah Rai.


You drive up to the drop-off area and then all passengers must find their way back to the single access point and up a ramp (up a ramp!) to get to the departure area which is not visible from the drop-off point. This makes no sense at all.


It is an unnecessarily long and convoluted route and just bad planning.

Travel between the check-in and Immigration to the Departure hall has also been made unnecessarily complicated.


One has to wind one's way through duty-free outlets that crowd the path - the width of which route is too narrow to accommodate only a trickle of passengers. If an A380 were to board, it would be totally inadequate to handle the volume of departing



A note to the operators: No need for the additional runway for super sized planes - the departures corridor and hall could not accommodate them anyway. Heaven help you if and when the airport reaches its maximum anticipated capacity .


The assortment of tourist 'bric-a-brac' on display is in any case not appealing and few if any departing passengers would try to hang around this amateurish display compared with, say, Singapore Duty free which is beautifully laid out and encourages browsing and purchasing.


Too bad for the passengers who are a tad late and dashing to get to the boarding gate - you still have to traverse this obstacle course of the Duty free area. The duty free area should be properly integrated with the departure hall as in most well planned airports.

The departure hall signage. What departure hall signage? It seems to have been deliberately placed so that you cannot look down the departure hall and see the gate numbers and identify the location of your departing flight. It is the wrong way round - parallel to the length of the space instead of at right angles. This is symptomatic of the poor signage scheme that permeates the entire facility. This is the first of two elements where it is almost impossible not to be able to locate reference material and guidelines as to the design and implementation of signage in public spaces. Clearly the designers never bothered to open the book nor look up references on the web.


Here, I must mention that the seating in the departure hall is also totally inadequate. On average, a plane takes 150 to 290 passengers. There is seating for barely 50 travelers per boarding gate - which is why one sees so many passengers sitting and lying on the floors. This contributes to the overall appearance of being a complete mess. Bad space planning again as the areas at the boarding gates are just too small and inadequate.

The arrival experience. Enough has been said about the inefficiencies of the Immigration processing. The fact that arriving passengers are, again, forced to walk through a convoluted route and duty free area on arrivals is both insulting and ridiculously insulting because, for goodness sake, let visitors see Bali first before you insist they buy duty fee nick-nacks and alcohol.


Prices in both departure and arrival duty free stores are not particularly charitable, anyway.


There was initially a fairly wide area where passengers could exit and meet their pick-up. That was subsequently changed so that they now have to go an extra 20-30 meters through a narrow exit at the side (near the toilets I might add) just so they can pass 3-4 more duty free shops. Utterly ridiculous.


Meters and greeters now see their arriving passengers and then have to scurry around the corner to actual meet up with them. Which makes the

arrivals point of exit much too crowded and confusing.

The car park. Yes, very pretty from the outside - but this must be the worst designed car park in the world from the point of view of circulation.


The internal circulation is overly convoluted - left - right - left - right around parked cars “ad nauseam.” The ramps are almost impossible to turn on to - the circulation paths are too narrow and the ramps are also too narrow by about 50 cm to 1 meter.


Again, did the architects not avail themselves of the reference material on car park circulation?? It's not difficult to find. I do not have a large car but had to back-up before I could make the turn onto the up or down ramps from the circulation paths.


To add insult to injury, after having gone (very gingerly so as not to scrape my car on the ramp walls) from bottom to top and back down again - I could not find a single available car parking space - so I did it again. Still nothing.


This may be a designated car park for visitors to park whilst waiting to pick up passengers but it is either completely undersized (i.e. the planners did not calculate the number of car parking spaces required to meet the demand) OR there are people who find it convenient to park there all day thus depriving genuine users of the spaces. Might these be airport staff?                                                        

There is no specific charge for using the car park - you only need to pay for entry and exit  from the airport itself - so it would suit staff that probably gets airport access for free anyway. Start charging for the parking (as they do in most airports) and it may free up some space for genuine users.


A tip for International flight car pick-ups: Park your car in the Domestic car park. Go to Starbucks. Have a cup of coffee and wait for your arriving guest to call you once they are in the pick-up area. Get into your car and drive to the International passenger pick-up area - pick up you guests and drive out of the airport. Hopefully, his can be done relatively quickly - sometimes there is a humungous back up at the toll booths . . . just another problem.




The entire facility seems to have been designed by persons who did not take the time and trouble to do their space planning and circulation research!


Oh yes, and many of the finishes are already showing signs of deterioration such as floor finishes (carpeting and others) and wall finishes. This is a result of poor specification and unsuitability for purpose.


There is no cause for Mr. Tommy Soetomo to be complacent. A view of the ocean does not compensate for these more important issues that need addressing.


Nothing good can be said of this airport - it's a disaster. Much of what is patently wrong with the airport cannot now be rectified - but a serious effort to analyze the shortcomings should now be undertaken in order to do something (anything) to improve an inherently flawed design.


What a missed opportunity!"



In a Holiday Mood

19 Official National Holidays and Shared Holidays in Indonesia for 2015


The Indonesian Government has decreed 19 official national public holidays in 2015. This total is comprised of 15 officials holidays and 4 “shared holidays” designated by the government to create long weekends and encourage domestic tourism.


The number of official holidays and shared holidays in 2015 is three days less than 2014 that has 22 holidays.


This list does not include, with the single exception of Nyepi, Balinese Holidays in 2015 on which Balinese Hindu are entitled to the day off.


National Holidays in 2015

Thursday, January 1, 2015 - New Year’s Day

Saturday, January 3, 2015   - The Birthday of the Prophet Muhammad

Thursday, February 19, 2015 – Chinese New Year (Imlek 2566)

Saturday, March 21, 2015 - "Nyepi" Bali Hindu New Year (Saka 1937)

Friday, April 3, 2015 – Good Friday

Friday, May 1, 2015 – Labor Day

Thursday, May 14, 2015 – The Ascension of Jesus Christ

Saturday, May 16, 2015 - Ascension Day of the Prophet Muhammad

Tuesday, June 2, 2015 - Buddhist Holy Day of Waisak 2559

Thursday, July 16, 2015 – Shared Public Holiday

Friday-Saturday, July 17-18, 2015 - Lebaran – Hari Raya Idul Fitri 1436 Hijriah

Monday, July 20, 2015– Shared Public Holiday

Tuesday, July 21, 2015 – Shared Public Holiday

Monday, August 17, 2015 - Indonesian Independence Day

Thursday, September 24, 2015 - Idul Adha 1436 Hijriah

Wednesday, October 14, 2015 - Islamic New Year 1437 Hijriah

Thursday, December 24, 2015 – Shared Public Holiday

Friday, December 25, 2015 – Christmas Day



Who Guards the Coldstream Hills?

Six-Courses of Fine Dining and the Wines of Coldstream Hills, Victoria on Saturday, October 18, 2014 at The Laguna Bali


The Laguna Bali – in its continuing series of memorable wine and dine evenings – will present a six-course degustation menu prepared by Chef Aris Supriyanto with carefully paired wines from Coldstream Hills, Yarra Valley, State of Victoria – Australia on Saturday, October 18, 2014.


In what promises to be a memorable another memorable evening of epicurean delight, cocktails and canapés will be served at 7:00 pm at the Arwana Terrace Bar followed by dinner at 7:30 pm.

r the evening have been selected by First Sommelier Yudhi Suryawan in concert with Andrew O’Brien from Coldstream Hills who will be on hand to share tales and anecdotes about winemaking in the Yarra Valley.


Since its first vintage in 1985, Coldstream Hills has built an enviable reputation for producing outstanding and distinctive wines from the Yarra Valley; in particular the hero varieties of the region, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Led by Chief Winemaker Andrew Fleming along with fellow winemaker Greag Jarratt, Coldstream Hills wines have received ongoing recognition at leading international wine shows, cementing its position as not only one of the regions great wineries, but also one of the great wine producers of Australia.


Limited seating is available by advance booking at Rp. 1.1 million net per person (US$92) that covers welcoming drinks, dinner and paired wines.




Amuse-bouche Coffee smoked hamachi fillet

Quick seared Japanese scallop, yuzu sago pearls, teriyaki glace and micro shiso leaves 

Coldstream Hills, Yarra Valley, Coldstream, Australia 2012 Chardonnay


Javanese crab tian

Bali black rice salad quenelle, Avruga caviar, saffron infused crab bisque

Chardonnay foam Coldstream Hills, Yarra Valley, Coldstream, Australia 2010 Chardonnay Reserve


Roasted caramelized duck breast

Reduced Pinot Noir spherical, orange compote, semifreddo foie gras, air dried raspberry salt

Coldstream Hills, Yarra Valley, Coldstream, Australia 2011 Pinot Noir


Milk-fed veal loin-prepared medium

Oxtail and porcini mushroom ragout in Pinot Noir slow roasted Malang apple, dauphinoise truffle potato natural veal jus

Coldstream Hills, Yarra Valley, Coldstream, Australia 2011 Pinor Noir Reserve


Warm Fourme d'Ambert cheese soufflé

Lombok honey, walnut biscotti, roasted pine nuts, Merlot poached Nashi pear

Coldstream Hills, Yarra Valley, Coldstream, Australia 2010 Merlot


Valrhona milk chocolate parfait

White chocolate crunch bar, passion sorbet golden raisin Anglaise

Coldstream Hills, Yarra Valley, Coldstream, Australia 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon


Coffee or tea and Mignardises


For information or reservations telephone ++62-(0)361-3005635 or [Email]



Taking it on the Nose

Bali Taxi Driver Faces Possible 8 Month Jail Sentence for Assaulting Russian Tourist


The State News Agency Antara reports that a taxi driver in Bali, Budiyanto, has heard prosecutors demand 8 months in prison for attacking and assaulting Russian tourist Ponomarenko Oksana on July 11, 2014 in Kuta, Bali.


During the continuing trial, prosecutors have related how Ponomarenko Oksana boarded a taxi on that date at 1:30 am in front of the Bounty Bar in Legian destined for the Hotel Mulia Nusa Dua.


The Russian complained that the driver was taking an unnecessarily circuitous route to The Mulia and demanded that the driver take a more direct route.


The taxi driver claimed he was on a one-way street and unable to reverse directions as requested by his Russian passenger, prompting Oksana to demand the car stop so he could immediately disembark.


At a location in front of the Hotel Anggrek Kuta the taxi driver allegedly struck the Russian, causing the tourist’s nose to bleed.


Ponomarenko Oksana subsequently reported the assault to the South Kuta Police Precinct. A visit to a nearby hospital confirmed the cuts and contusions to the man’s face resulted from being struck by the taxi driver.



Flying to the Max

Garuda Phasing Out of Boeing 737-800NG with Introduction of Boeing 737 MAX 8


Indonesia national carrier Garuda Indonesia has commenced on the rejuvenation of its fleet of narrow-bodied aircraft via a phased introduction of the latest edition of the Boeing 737:  the Boeing 737 MAX 8.


Garuda’s vice-president of corporate communications, Pujobroto, said the rejuvenation program is part of the airline’s desire to maintain comfort and service levels by operating a fleet of aircraft with an average age of 5 years.


Speaking to, Pujobroto said: “We are operating the newest variant from Boeing at a time when the 12-year lease agreement for Boeing 737-800NG is ending.”


The Boeing 737 MAX 8 is the next generation of the Boeing 737-800 NG featuring improve technology, more efficient fuel consumption and operating costs, lower sound emissions and reduced levels of carbon emissions.


The introduction of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 will take place in a phased, natural replacement of the 50 Boeing-800 NG now flown by Garuda that will take place between 2017 and 2023.



Tippling on the Job

Singapore’s Tippling Club Chef Ryan Clift Joins Chris Salans at the Mozaic Beachclub Saturday, October 25, 2014


On Saturday, October 25, 2014 Mozaic Beachclub on Seminyak’s Batubelig Beach, will be home to a gastronomic collaboration between chef-owner Chris Salans and the founder of Singapore’s famed Tippling Club Ryan Clift.


Ryan Clift and Tippling Club


The Tippling Club – ranked in Miele Awards as one of the “Top 20 Restaurants” and as one of the “World’s 50 Best Bars” by Drinks International – is home to Chef Clift’s brand of modern French gastronomy that is self-described as “fun, playful and fresh.”


In early 2008, Ryan moved to Singapore to start his own venture, determined to take modern food and cocktail pairing to a new level. It was here that Ryan and his team launched, Tippling Club. Within its first year of operation, Tippling Club quickly earned its reputation as one of Singapore’s top restaurants. 


It wasn’t long before Tippling Club also garnered a place in the annual Miele Guide compilations of Asia’s Top 20 Restaurants in 2010, 2011 and 2012.


Tippling Club also had success for their drinks in the list of ‘World’s 50 Best Bars’ in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 by the highly regarded industry  publication, Drinks International.


Tippling Club’s most recent industry accolade includes a new entry into Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants sponsored by S. Pellegrino& Acqua Panna, at number 23 on the list.


Early in 2011 Ryan again put Singapore on the global culinary map by being the first Singapore-based chef to be selected to present alongside the world’s best chefs at the prestigious culinary event Madrid Fusión.


2011 also saw Chef Ryan launch his highly anticipated TV show on the National Geographic Channel. Hosted by Ryan himself, "Chef on the Road" tracks his journey through the varied and colorful culinary landscape of Asia


Salans’ masterful use of Indonesia ingredients and flavors in combination with Clift’s widely respected culinary skills promise a night not to be missed by serious “foodies.”


The eight-course menu created by Salans and Clift for the October 25 culinary happening:




purple garlic, parsley root



cold confit apple, spiced biscuit



goats’ curd, vegetable jus



lime tofu, green curry



artichoke, dashi vinegar, burrata, horseradish





chef’s interpretation of the classic English sweet


Bookings are essential for this limited seating event priced at Rp. 1.8 million (US$150) as seats are very limited. Additional wine or cocktail pairings are also available.


For more information and bookings telephone +62-(0)361-473 5796 or [Email]



Golden Tulips Bloom in Bali

Golden Tulip Essential Hotel Opens in Denpasar, Bali


The Louvre Hotels Group have opened the second Golden Tulip property in Indonesia at the Golden Tulip Essential Hotel located in Bali’s capital of Denpasar.


A business hotel located on Denpasar’s northern ring road of Jalan Gatot Subroto, the property is positioned as an “affordable comfort” 3-star property offering 94 superior and deluxe rooms.


Well-suited to business travelers, the hotel offers complimentary in-room Wi-Fi, six function rooms, a restaurant and bar, swimming pool and spa.


Serving as general manager of the property is Agus Sofyan, an experienced Indonesian hotelier. Prior to joining Golden Tulip, Sofyan worked at the director of sales and marketing at the JS Luwansa Hotel & Convention Center in Jakarta and in the same capacity at the Aston Bogor Hotel and Resort. Other sales positions include stints at the Sultan Hotel in Jakarta, Mercure Convention Center Ancol-Jakarta, Gran Melia Jakarta, Crowne Plaza Jakarta, Mandarin Oriental, Kempinski Jakarta and Hotel Borobudur Jakarta.



Dangers of a Twilight Swim

Chinese Tourist Drowns on Geger Beach in South Bali


The body of a 36-year-old Chinese tourist from Shanghai, Fagang Yin, was found on Geger Beach at Nusa Dua on Sunday, October 5, 2014.


As reported by, members of the National Search and Rescue Team (BASARNAS) assisted by members of the Bali Lifesaving Association (BALAWISTA) found the lifeless body of the Chinese swimmer washed up in the surf.


The management of the Mulia Hotel contacted authorities to reports that a snorkeler had not returned to the hotel after a swim at 8:30 pm.


11 members of the BASARNAS team arrived at the scene at 9:00 p.m.


According to search officials the man went snorkeling at 6:30 p.m. but officials were only contacted at 8:30 p.m.


The Chinese tourists body was sent to Bali’s Sanglah General Hospital for forensic examination.



Indonesia Fit for Travel

Outgoing Indonesian Tourism Minister Leaves Booming Tourism Sector


As she prepares to end her term as Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Mari Elka Pangestu has highlighted four programs that she would like to see retained during the coming five-year term of her replacement.


As reported by, Pangestu said she hoped the National Strategic Tourism Areas targeted for special development would be increased from 16 to 25.


Speaking in Jakarta on Monday, October 6, 2014, Pangestu also said that she hoped promotion of Indonesian tourism would continue in the primary markets of Singapore, Malaysia, Australia and China and the secondary markets of Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, Taiwan, the U.S.A. and France. The outgoing Minister also urged continued promotion to the promising markets of India, Holland, the Middle East, Germany and Russia.


Continuing, Pangestu said, “Don’t forget to develop further plans for thematic tourism and the seven designated areas of special interest tourism.”


The Minister asked her successor to emphasize domestic tourism and the designated 16 main markets for domestic travelers from West Java, Central Java, East Java, Jakarta, North Sumatra, Yogyakarta, South Sulawesi, Bali, Banten, Lampung, South Sumatra, West Sumatra, South Kalimantan, Riau, East Nusa Tenggara and Aceh.


Mari was proud that during the past two years the growth of national tourism has exceeded the rate of growth of the national economy as a whole. As she leaves office, tourism contributes 3.9 of the total national economy and 8.9% of all employment.



Touching the SKY

AYANA Resort and Spa Launches its New Wedding and Event Venue - SKY


A gala grand opening under a near full moon on a panoramic cliff overlooking the Indian Ocean was held on Friday, October 10, 2104 a for SKY – the new wedding and events menu at AYANA Resort and Spa Bali.

of tourism management, event and press turned up dressed in white to enjoye the 180-degree ocean views as the sun set over the enormous 7,500 square meter venue.


Visually stunning from a variety of  perspectives, AYANA’s weddings team had set-up a mock wedding with bride and groom seemingly floating above the ocean at the end of the cantilevered wedding deck that extends 3.5 meters out from the cliff-edge.


The wedding deck was spectacularly decorated with a full floral canopy, altar and tiffany chairs, and quickly became the focal point for selfies for those attending the opening.

nment for the evening included performances by Denada, a chart-topping rapper who was Master of Ceremonies, a violinists at sunset, energizing water drum percussion performance and a rivetting live band performance before the evening ended with a spectacular clift-side fireworks display.


I keeping with AYANA’s reputation for outstanding food and beverage, guests were treated to delicacies representing the 15 dining venues found at AYANA and its sister property RIMBA Jimbaran Bay  served in combination with an endless supply of signature cocktails and wine.

is designed to accommodate intimate occasions in complete privacy as well as large events of up to 1,000 guests seated or 2,000 cocktail-style.

a multi-million upgrade to ÂYANA'S meeting and event facilities, the launch of SKY is intended to position the  90-hectare resort as Bali’s most spectacular ocean-front venue for corporate functions and weddings in an exclusively private cliff-top location. It follows the opening of RIMBA Jimbaran Bali by AYANA in late 2013, offering another 282 suites and guest rooms to expand upon AYANA Resort and Spa’s 290 suites and rooms and The Villas at AYANA Resort’s 78 private pool villas - bringing to 650 the total number of accommodation across the property to support large scale events on-site.


Shown on – some snapshots from the gala opening of SKY



Remembering Our Gentle Ben

Dinner Amicale of Chaine des Rostisseurs at Vin + Seminyak on Saturday, October 25, 2104


The Bali chapter of La Confrérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs – arguably the world’s largest and oldest gastronomic society founded in 1950 but tracing its roots to the Court of King Louis IX in 1248, will host a Dinner Amicale on Saturday, October 25, 2014 at Vin + Seminyak.


The dinner on October 25th will be a special event as a tribute to the memory of Ben Chardome, a Belgium food and beverage professional who worked in Bali before his tragic death on board MH17 together with 297 other passengers while flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur on July 17, 2104.


The dinner at V + Seminyak will begin with cocktails at 6:30 p.m. followed by dinner at 7:30 p.m.. The cost of the cocktail, dinner and paired wines is Rp. 1.5 million net (US$125) and Rp. 2 million net (US$167) for non-members.


Seating is limited with priority given to members and members limited to bring one guest.


The Dinner Amicale on October 25th will not be a black-tie affair, but a casual evening at which diners are only asked to dress in Bali chic with a touch of bright color in memory of Ben.


Dinner Amicale

Vin + Seminyak

Chaîne des Rôtisseurs

Saturday, October 25, 2104



Aperitif & Canapès



Scallop Ceviche with a Cucumber Green Mango Salad, Pickled Beetroot & a touch of Vanilla

Pio Cesare Gavi Vino Bianco, Cortese, Piedmont, Italy 2011



Traditional Lobster Capellini

Villa Maria Private Bin East Coast, Chardonnay, Malborough, New Zealand 2012



Australian Wagyu Tartar with a Quail Egg, Tomato Confit & Mustard Dressing

Pio Cesare Dolcetto D’Alba, Dolcetto+, Piedmont, Italy 2010



Jus de Tomate Vierge Marie



Braised New Zealand Lamb Shank with an Iranian Saffron Risotto Milanese & Gremolata

Cullen Mangan Red, Malbec + Petit Verdot, Merlot, Margaret River, Australia 2010



Ben Inspired Chocolate Mousse

with an Island Coconut Tuille & a Mint Chocolate Truffle

Cointreau & Crème de Cacao



Table du Fromage with Traditional Accoutrements

M. Chapoutier Bernardine - Châteauneuf du Pape, Grenache Blanc, Rhône Valley, France 2009

Joseph Drouhin Moulin-à-Vent, Gamay, Beaujolais, France 2008


For more information or to reserve a space [Email]



Courting the Chinese Market

Garuda CEO Outlines Steps in Place to Grow the Chinese Market


Garuda Indonesia has its sights set on the Chinese market, committed to aggressively pursuing a larger share of the estimated 100 million Chinese tourists who take a trip each year.


Quoted by the CEO of Garuda, Emirsyah Satar, said, “China has always been a best market for Garuda. China is the country with the largest economy with many Chinese nationals traveling abroad.”


Garuda’s marketers estimated that 100 million Chinese take a holiday abroad every year. From that total, only about 1 million come to Indonesia.


Satar said that Garuda has devised strategies to secure more Chinese holiday passengers.


Among those strategies used by Garuda is participation in a number of travel fairs in various Chinese cities as well as cooperation with influential travel bloggers in China who share with their readers’ stories about the friendliness and variety of travel experiences available in Indonesia.


The blogger has also been telling Chinese readers that Garuda recently won the accolade of “The Best Cabin Staff” from SkyTrax.


Satar continued, “We are also providing Chinese drinks and food, Chinese movies, Western film with English subtitles and Mandarin language magazines.”


In addition, Garuda has two cabin crew from China on every flight to and from China.


Garuda Indonesia serves routes between Beijing and Bali, Beijing and Jakarta, Shanghai and Jakarta, and Huang Zhou and Jakarta.




Bali Governor Invites Indian Film Stars to Make a Movie in Bali


Bali governor Made Mangku Pastika used the occasion of a visit to Bali by seven stars of the epic Indian television series Mahabharata  to make a film in Bali.


As reported by the State News Agency Antara, Pastika, accompanied by his wife Ayu Pastika, made the invitation to the Indian actors during a reception held on Sunday, October 5, 2014 at the Indian Consulate General in Denpasar.


Pastika expressed a welcome to the seven superstars to Bali, inviting them to make a film in Bali at some point in the future.


The seven Mahabharata players present in Bali were: Rohit Bharadwaj (Yudhistira), Saurav Gurjar (Bhima), Shaheer Sheikh (Arjuna), Vin Rana (Nakula), Lavanya Bhardwaj (Sadewa), Arpit Radka (Duryudhaya) and Aham Sharma (Karna).


While attending the reception in the Consulate hundred of excited fans crowded to area surrounding the building, duplicating a level of fan mania that marked the group of actors visit to Bali.


Pastika saluted the seven actors’ performance in a serial based on a Hindu epic reflecting the religious philosophy of the Balinese people. Adding: “If the visitors were actors in romantic or an action film, I probably wouldn’t attend.”



Bali, Where the Beach Rushes to Meet You

Little Action to Address Beach Erosion at Nusa Dua


Officials of the Badung regency have noted shore erosion taking place along the shores of Nusa Dua. However, Made Badra, the chief of Livestock, Fisheries and Oceans (Dinakanlut) for Badung claims the erosion occurring in Kuta is more severe and must be given priority by the government.


Speaking to DenPost on Tuesday, October 7, 2014, Badra complained of a lack of funds to deal with erosion, calling on leaders of Bali’s tourism industry, including the Indonesian Tourism Development Corporation (formerly the Bali Tourism Development Corporation), to lend a hand.


Touching on plans to zone beaches in the Badung regency, Badra said that formulation of any shoreline-zoning plan would take place after a socialization process with North Kuta and Mengwi.


In response, the director of operations for the ITDC, Nyoman Cakra, stated there was little his organization could do to address the worsening abrasion of Nusa Dua’s shoreline as the shoreline was under the control of the government.


Cakra did not discount a possible role for the ITDC in helping to communicate with hotel operators in Nusa Dua on how to address beach erosion.


DenPost had reported earlier that the beach behind the amphitheatre at Nusa Dua has been eroded by wave action with no response from the government to ameliorate the problem.



Got the Wedding Bell Blues

Western Australia Wedding Organizer Closes, Leaving Many Bali Weddings in Doubt


The collapse of a Western Australian Wedding Organizer has left a number of matrimonially-intended stranded at the altar.


Bali D’Luxe, owned and operated by Australian Catherine Williams, has taken steps to voluntarily wind up its wedding planner business leaving at least nine Australian couples out-of-pocket some AU$105,000.


The West Australian detailed how Western Australian couple Michael Simmons and Marina Attwater arrived in Bali last week after paying AU$20,000 to Bali D’Luxe to find no payments had been made to Bali suppliers, leaving them to pay twice for venues and services.


Amy-Mae Perry and Jack Smith may have to cancel their November 8, 2014 wedding in Bali after the AU$6,300 they paid to Williams has vanished.


Another couple, Matt Horsley and Susan Henderson, were married in Bali on September 2, 2014 with arrangements by Bali D’Luxe but are unable to get their promised wedding certificate. Suppliers, who apparently have not been paid, are withholding wedding photos and a video of the couple’s ceremony.



A Packet Full of Woe

Bali Customs Intercept Three Cargo Packets Containing Methamphetamines


The State News Agency Antara reports that the Customs and Excise Department at Bali’s airport have thwarted an attempt to smuggle methamphetamines via air cargo.


Custom’s officials confiscated three packets sent from overseas via cargo packers on September 28 and 30, 2014.


The September 28th packet was sent from China and addressed to a Putu Yoga on Jalan Gunung Sari Gang Griya Dad No. 29 in Denpasar. The first shipment containing 50 waist packs concealing 548 grams of methamphetamines. The concealed drugs were revealed by x-ray examination done at the airport.


Officials later determined that the narcotics were shipped by Putu Yoga from China and self-addressed to his residence in Bali.


A second shipment of waist packets sent to another address contained an additional 586 grams of methamphetamines.


A third cargo shipment sent from America arrived on October 2, 2014 addressed to Marten Afrianto in Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara. That shipment containing PlayStation 3 devices also carried 44 grams of methamphetamines.


Bali police are now seeking more information for all three shipments sent to addresses that are unoccupied residences.



The Tragic Refuse of Bali’s Teeming Shores

Austrian Tourist Found Dead on the Beach Near Lovina, North Bali


A 60-year-old Austrian tourist has apparently drowned on Bali’s north coast The Lovina Hotel.


Local residents found the body of Leonard Koeck on the shore at 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 9, 2014.


The head of the Singaraja police precinct, I Gusti Agung Purnama Wirahadi, said the man, clad only in his underwear, was found in a state of rigor mortis some 50 meters from The Lovina Hotel where the Austrian was registered as a guest together with a group of friends.


Police say the man’s body had bruising on his chest.


Police are awaiting approval from the man’s family to perform a detailed autopsy that would provide insights on the circumstances of the man’s death.



Many Unhappy Returns

20 Dead and 21 Still Missing from Party of 49 People on Wedding Cruise from Madura to North Bali


A local boat sailing from the East Java island of Madura carrying a wedding party of 49 destined for North Bali sunk on Monday, October 6, 2014.


The boat that lost power and went down near Situbondo, East Java, sent the 49 passengers into the sea. Search and rescue workers on the fifth day after the accident counted 8 passengers rescued alive, 20 dead bodies recovered from the waters and 21 passengers still missing at sea.


Counted among the 20 confirmed dead were five children ranging in age from 2.5-years to 7-years.


Among the 8 people rescued alive include the ship’s captain and 7 other adult passengers.


All the passengers sailing on the boat originated from the village of Telango Tenga, Brakas in Madura part of a wedding party for bridegroom Ahmad Yani Bin Mupaher (22) who was engaged to be married with a woman from Pemuteran, North Bali.


According to NusaBali, when the ship was sinking one mile to the south of Takat Mas Island, a member of the crew managed to alert people ashore by climbing the ship’s mast and using his hand phone to call a relative in Madura.



Setting the Standards for Health

BIMC Hospital Nusa Dua Wins Top Australian Health Care Accreditation


The BIMC Hospital, Nusa Dua, Bali has become the first hospital in Indonesia to win accreditation from the Australian Council on Healthcare Standard (ACHS).


Part of the Siloam International Hospital Group, BIMC Nusa Dua was cited by ACHS assessor Professor Bruce Waxman for its “commitment to patient care and service delivery and its recognition of continuing quality development.”


Dr. Donna Moniaga, CEO of BIMC Siloam Hospitals Group Bali, sees the accreditation as a necessary step to move Bali towards becoming a medical tourism destination. “The ACHS stamp of approval strengthens BIMC’s position as a leading health service provider in Bali, for residents and medical tourists,” she said.


Continuing, Dr. Moniaga said: “BIMC started from a vision to establish a hospital that met the highest international standards. And now, after what has been a painstaking survey, this accreditation is a realization for everyone on our medical team.”


Craig Beveridge, executive chairman of BIMC Siloam Hospital Group Bali added: “The ACHS has more than a thousand members worldwide, but it was only in April of this year that the first ACHS accreditation team came to Southeast Asia, to the Sunway Medical Centre in Malaysia. We are most pleased to be among the first in the to be similarly honored.”


Explaining the significance of ACHS certification, Beveridge said: “Not so long ago if tourists were in medical trouble in Bal and had something more serious than a broken leg, one’s best option was to fly to Singapore. Many visitors could not understand why if they were staying in a luxurious international brand resort, they couldn’t get five-star medical treatment (in the same location). Well, now they can.”


The ACHS is an independent, not-for-profit organization that closely examines and assesses hospitals before providing accreditation. Its surveyors look at the many details of a facility’s infrastructure, policies, protocols and staff along with the role played by the facility in its community. In 1995 the Indonesian Ministry of Health established a Committee for Indonesian Hospital Accreditation (KARS) and in March 2014 BIMC Nusa Dua received its KARS accreditation.


Located at the Indonesian Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC) complex at Nusa Dua, BIMC Hospital presents five centers of excellence: a 24-hour Accident and Emergency Center, 24-hour Medical Center, CosMedic Center, Dental Center and a Dialysis Center.


BIMC Hospitals became part of Siloam Hospitals nationwide system of 19 nationwide hospitals.



The Dark Side of Paradise

Medical Faculty Member from Bali’s Udayana University Claims Junior High Students Working as Gigolos in Kuta


As published in the Bali Post, a doctor from Udayana University’s medical faculty has painted a dark and depressing story of one of the outcomes of Bali’s current tourism boom.


Dr. Oka Negara told that, in addition to concerns surrounding free sex and narcotics use among Bali’s youth, he has uncovered a new concern embodied by group of junior high school students who earn extra money by working a gigolos. Negara says these under-aged sex-workers charge as little as Rp. 50,000 (US$4) for sexual services they offer to drunken tourists walking the back alleyways of Kuta.


Describing the transaction process, Dr. Negara said the gigolos look for females leaving night spots, adding: “They ask for payment of only Rp. 50,000 from those interested in their services. Mostly they look for drunken tourists. Usually they bring their customers to nearby beach.”


The respected doctor and educator is concerned about both the immediate impact on the student’s health resulting from unprotected sex, but also on the long-term psychological impact of children aged 12-15 years engagement in the commercial sex industry.


Negara said he has patients who skip school in order to sell sexual favors. He said that the money gigolos earn is generally not used for school fees, but for frivolous shopping and self-indulgent activities.


The Professor would like to gather up these young sex workers in order to educate them to the dangers of their part-time employment as prostitutes and provide much-needed sex education. But, sadly, Negara admits that there is little interest among these young people in listening to lectures.


Because of this, he hopes parents in Bali will take a more active interest in the extra-curricular activities of their children and provide basic sex education starting from the home.



Streaming Illegality

Illegal Rafting Operators Outnumber Bona Fide Operators on Bali’s Ayung River


Bali Post reports that many of the rafting operators on the Ayung River are unlicensed. The problem has become so pervasive that the number of unlicensed rafting operators now out number licensed companies.


When confronted with this situation, illegal rafting operators blame the complicated and convoluted bureaucracy of the province of Bali as the main reason they hold no permits.


The deputy-regent of Badung, I Made Sudiana, revealed this during a visit to the village of Bongkasa on the Ayung River on Tuesday, October 7, 2014. That visit uncovered that among the 14 rafting companies operating at this time only 4 have the necessary legal permits.


The illegal-rafting operators, mostly comprised of local residents, complain they feel marginalized by licensing procedures that, they claim, favor outside investors with large capital resources. The perbekal of Bongkasa, Made Suarjana, said: “Outside investors can easily obtain a license. This is strange. The government should give a priority to local businesses.”


Continuing, Suarjana contends that the local unlicensed operators offer an equal level of quality in terms of both facilities and manpower, but are defeated by rafting companies owned by outside investors. Suarjana pointedly said that local players are tried of becoming spectators in Bali’s tourism industry and forced to travel paths "covered with sharp stones" that must be traversed to achieve business success.


Suarjana described that in order to obtain a formal license, rafting operators must form a corporation, a hurdle local villagers do not want to undertake.


The government’s requirement that rafting companies must be formed under a PT (business incorporation) emanates from the government’s desire to establish a structure of legal responsibility for those operating on the River.


The deputy-regent said that local entrepreneurs need facilitation from the government to assist in meeting licensing requirements, helping to avoid the marginalization of local community members in Bongkasa.



Cementing the Island’s Mythology

Denpasar Titi Banda Monument to be Completed in November 2014


Construction continues on the Titi Banda Monument located at the three-way intersection of Jalan Bypass Ngurah Rai – Kesiman Kertalanggu in East Denpasar.


Those in charge of the project say that as of October 6, 2014, the project is 45% complete.


Paid for from the Denpasar Municipal budget for 2014, the Rp. 5.32 billion (US$470,000) Titi Banda Monument depicts a scene from the Ramayana Epic in which an epic mythical bridge is constructed. Rama will stand triumphantly at the center of the monument surrounded by a troop of primate soldiers – all preparing to cross the bridge to the fortress of Alengka, home to King Ravana.


At its current stage of development the foundation pedestal is complete and surrounded by a troupe of 18 militant monkeys.


When completed, the Bali Titi Banda Monument will stand 17.5-meters high.


The entire project is targeted for completion in November 2014.



Bali’s Full Moon to Shine Brighter

Pejeng Royal Palace Debuts Monthly Dance and Music Extravaganza


What promises to become a “must see” for Bali visitors premiered on Wednesday, October 8, 2014 at the Puri Agung Soma Negare Pejeng at a grand cultural evening hosted by the Regent of the Gianyar Regency, A.A. Gde Agung Bharata.

d under the banner of “Cultural Wonders of the Royal Pejeng Performance” – selected guests were hosted to a dinner in the courtyard of the Pejeng Palace – one of the oldest Royal Palaces of Bali that dates its roots to at least the10th Century.

has long been viewed as the “cradle of Balinese civilization" with archaeological findings demonstrating an advance level of civilization in the area dating from prehistoric times. Still on display in Pejeng is the world-celebrated “Moon of Pejeng” a huge bronze-age drum. Further testifying to early settlement of the area are the numerous ancient stone sarcophagi still being unearthed by farmers in the areas surrounding Pejeng.


Long a center for the arts and sacred dance, the Pejeng Palace was rebuilt in 1917 after a major earthquake in Bali. With an open heart to art and creativity, the Royal Household has played host to the first President of the Republic who so loved the area that he built a Presidential Palace there at Tampaksiring. The likes of Walter Spies, Hans Snel and Antonio Blanco have paused over the years at the welcoming palace to savor its rich tradition of dance and culture.


Art and culture at Pejeng is anything but stolid and static. This was demonstrated by the dynamic and colorful Kumbhakarna Gugur Art Performance presented after dinner by more than 100 musicians and dancers. A colossal spectacle created and choreographed by Professor Dr. I Wayan Dibia and I Made Sidia, guests were treated to a mesmerizing performance before the Palace’s gapura entrance lit, in part, by a full moon that only moments before had undergone a rare total eclipse.


In a story taken from the Hindu epic Mahabrata, dancers, actors and musicians spun the story of the heroic Kumbhakara who fights evil demons to defend the land of his birth. Highly skilled dancers and actors incorporated modern permutations of wayang kulit puppetry, wayang wong (stage play) and Bali’s fabled kecak dance.  The final battle scene involving warriors, combative monkeys and a giant oversize puppet left viewers gasping in delight.


Presented by the Gianyar’s Department of Culture, the dinner and performance are planned to become a monthly offering during each full moon.


Shown on are pictures from the Kumbhakarna Gugur Art Performance.




© Bali Discovery Tours. Articles may be quoted and reproduced if attributed to

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