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Bali News by Bali Update
BALI UPDATE #955 - 22 December 2014

IN THIS UPDATE


A Vanishing Act at the Bali Zoo
Roy and Joy – Two Baby Tigers Born at The Bali Zoo

2 rare and endangered Bengal tigers (Panthera tigris tigris) were recently born at the Bali Zoo.
cies of tiger native to the Indian subcontinent, there are less that 2,500 left in the world with the individual areas of the wild where these magnificent animal still exists not large enough to support anything more than a population of 250 cats.

The dwindling wild population of Bengal's numbers between 1500-1900 in India, 440 in Bangladesh, 125-299 in Nepal and 7-80 in Bhutan. The remaining number of Bengal tigers are held in captive populations.

Mr. Buntung and Mrs. Kartini became the proud parents two months ago of Roy and Joy, born at the Bali Zoo. The fecund couple now lead a growing family of 12 tigers, prompting the people in charge at the Bali Zoo to undertake the construction of a larger exhibit to house this sizeable streak of tigers.

Meanwhile the tiger keepers are delighted by the two newcomers, Joy and Roy, shown on Balidiscovery.com who have arrived “just in time” to help the Bali Zoo celebrate its 9th anniversary and welcome the many visitors expected over the year-end holidays.

[Bali Zoo Entry]

[Bali Zoo Half-Day Tour with Lunch]

[Bali Zoo Half-Day Tour]

[Bali Zoo Half Day Tour and Treewalk]

[Bali Zoo Night Zoo, Show and Dinner]

[Bali Zoo Zoobak Trekking and Horse Carriage]

[Bali Zoo Zoobak Trekking, Horse Carriage and Treewalk]
 


Bali Remembrances of Christopher Hitchens
Ubud Resident W. Scott Thompson Fondly Recalls a Visit to Bali by British-American Author and Journalist Christopher HItchens Who Died on December 15, 2011.

The New Straits Times December 21, 2001 edition carried a column “The Passing of a Literary Tsunami” written by Dr. W. Scott Thompson remembering a Bali visit by the world-renowned author and journalist Chirtsopher Hitchens who died on December 15, 2011.

Thompson, who has lived in Bali intermittently since 2000, is Emeritus Professor of International Politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy in Boston. He has worked in four American administrations and written 15 books, most recently 'Trustee of the Nation: the Biography of Fidel V. Ramos,' which is the Filipiino president's authorized biography.

When in Bali, he resides in his villa in Gianyar and also lives in Manila and Washington.

We reprint, with the kind permission of Dr. Thompson, his article as it appeared in the New Straits Times.

The Passing of a Literary Tsunami
W. Scott Thompson

There was as much news in the New York Times last Friday about the death of Christopher Hitchens as there had been for the Japanese tsunami. But my friend Christopher was a literary tsunami, and all his life. His name was not a household word, unlike politicians or film stars who come and go. But it will endure long after most of them.

We met in Washington through our mutual Oxford colleague, Balliol, whose epithet is "tranquil consciousness of effortless superiority". Hitch flattered me by assuming I was, therefore, smart. But nobody was as smart as he was. It's always useful when one has a presumed asset to remember that there are many more -- who are much smarter, more beautiful, still better golfer, or whatever.

Everyone has a Hitchens' story. He came to Bali a few years ago to visit me at my villa, but after an overseas flight, where he had even more drinks than his legendary usual capacity, boarded a connecting flight in Jakarta to Balikpapan. At least he got the first four letters right, but the taxi there didn't know where my villa was, so he asked for the Ritz. The driver must have thought he was mad, and soon, the mistake was discerned. Seven hours late (he was lucky), he arrived as always sloppy and awaiting a drink. Sober, he was the smartest person I've ever known. Drunk, he was even more lucid, though in a different way. His death from esophagus cancer was almost predictable. Add three packs of cigarettes a day, and I'd say he was lucky to make it to 62.

He was excoriated by the left when he put socialism (really, he was a Trotskyite all his life) behind him and shifted to the right, even supporting the Iraq invasion and war. But many have done the same, when the facts driving our beliefs shifted. Christopher's discovery, in his late 40s, that he was Jewish, a long-held family secret in an English middle-class family, made him less anti-Israeli and prompted a general re-examination of his views, and his writing shifted accordingly.

His most famous book God is not Great, caused a huge stir, because he not only dug deeply into the roots of the superstitious part of all religions, including the Protestantism of his background, but challenged dogma, myth and the harm of fanaticism so often justified by religion. But some have joked that, if it turns out there really is a God, heaven and hell, his punishment will be to be placed in a town without alcohol or books. As Michael Kinsley wrote, "God should be flattered: unlike most of those clamoring for his attention, Hitchens treats him like an adult".

Nothing was sacrosanct to Christopher, except truth. Truth has a way of showing up in different guises, and my friend shifted in his views all his life, as he saw the facts changing.

I've made the point here before, "read obituaries" to decide what's really important. Hitch's contribution to world debate alone reminds us that words end up being more powerful than guns. I would never agree to debate him on anything, because he had a way of demolishing every argument and genially crushing every opponent.

One of our best discussions was a luncheon at Lamak, my favorite Ubud restaurant. I don't think I'd ever spent more than US$50 for two, but this time, the bill was more than US$300, courtesy of Vanity Fair. Well, brandy, good wines or anything with alcohol are expensive in Indonesia, but it took some doing to reach US$300. As the afternoon pushed on, Hitch became just more and more eloquent. And despite his taking American citizenship after 9/11, to me he remained an Englishman to the core. At the dinner I gave in his honor, he flattered a high member of Bali royalty, by addressing her as "your royal highness" and bowing at the neck as he would have done to the British queen.

For both of us, Evelyn Waugh's celebrated Brideshead Revisited was our favorite novel. But Christopher could quote long passages by heart. I really didn't know what it was truly about until he led me through its inner depths.

The world has lost a wonderful person. Not a headliner until his death, but enduring. The fact that 2,000 people gathered in London's Festival Hall to celebrate his life, in his last dying days in Houston, showed his real standing.


It Tolls for Thee
Construction Underway for Bali’s First Toll Road Connecting Benoa and Nusa Dua – Here’s the Map.

Bali’s first toll road connecting Benoa and Nusa Dua commenced construction on Wednesday, December 21, 2011.
l way will have a total length of 8.12 kilometers, not including a 1.58 kilometers access road to the airport and a 2.2 kilometers access road at the Benoa port.

The elevated roadway will be built on pylons suspending the highway over a protected mangrove forest. The road will have 2 main lanes traveling in each direction for a total of four lanes, plus two special ancillary lanes dedicated exclusively for motorcycle traffic.

Designers are building a road that will allow speeds of Rp. 80 kilometers per hours meaning that, in principle, cars can travel the distance from Benoa to Nusa Dua in 6.1 minutes, a mere fraction of the travel time required on the existing road systems.

As shown on the accompanying map on Balidiscovery.com, the road features a special connecting access to Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport. This will markedly shorten the traveling time to the airport from either Nusa Dua or Sanur by allowing travelers to bypass the Simpang Siur intersection or the busy Jalan Bypass Ngurah Rai connecting the airport and Nusa Dua.

The project – dubbed the Waterway Suspended Toll Way (Jalan Toll Diatas Perairan – JTDP) – is scheduled for completion in 14 months.

On the same day that Bali marked the commencement of construction of the new JTDP, ground was also broken for the Simpang Siur Underpass project in Kuta.

The JDTP project is owned by a conglomeration of State-owned enterprises including:
  • PT Jasa Marga (Persero)
  • PT Pelindo III
  • PT Angkasa Pura I
  • PT Pengembangan Pariwisata Bali (BTDC) Nusa Dua.
  • PT Wijaya Karya (Persero)
  • PT Adhi Karya (Persero)
  • PT Hutama Karya (Persero).


The Tragic and Wretched Refuse Of Our Teeming Shores
Bodies Wash Ashore in Bali from the Estimated 206 People Who Perished in Sinking of People Smuggling Ship off East Java

At least 16 corpses have washed up on various shores in Bali, representing a small portion of an estimated 206 people who lost their lives when a ship smuggling a group of illegal immigrants to Australia capsized near Trenggalek, East Java on Saturday, December 17, 2011.

The decomposing bodies in Bali have emerged from the surf at Pantai Batu Bolang, Bali Cliff Beach in Ungasan, Canggu Beach (North Kuta), Padang Bai, Lembongan Island, Kusamba and Serangan island. Other bodies are floating ashore in various locations along the coast of East Java while a flotilla of boats continue to comb the surrounding waters in search of surivors or victims.

Meanwhile, police have named two Indonesian men, Bambang (40) and Nuryanto (36), as suspects in the sinking of the ship that was attempting to illegally smuggle Middle-Easterners to Australia via Java.

Bambang has been identified by police as both the Master and the Owner of the stricken ship Barokah, while Nuryanto is listed as a member of the crew. 

Press reports allege the involvement of at least three army officers who reportedly facilitated the departure of the large group of illegal immigrants from Popoh beach in Java. The identity of the military police is known and they are being interrogated by military police authorities.


Construction Ahead
Ground Broken on Simpang Siur Dewa Ruci Underpass Project in Bali. Completion Scheduled for Mid-2013

Work commenced on Wednesday, December 21, 2011on Bali’s first underpass at Kuta’s Dewa Ruci Monument also know as Simpang Siur.

The total project is estimated to need18 months to complete at a project cost of Rp. 139.19 billion (US$15.5 million).

Quoted in Bali Post, the head of the Agency charged with National Roadway Construction for the province, Susalit Alius, said the interchange represents the main access to for the rest of the island for Bali’s airport and the Nusa Dua tourism area. Depicting the access point as currently overloaded, Alius said the roadway must be improved by facilitating traffic flows via an underpass.

An initial feasibility study for the project was completed in 2007, with revisions undertaken in 2008 and 2010. The scope of work for the project include the construction of a box culvert, frontage, U-turn and reinforcement of the Dewa Ruci monument using corrugated sheet piles.

Susalit explained: “The underpass will use secant pile button construction. The top height clearance will measure 5.3 meters with a total length of 38 meters."

The Minister of Public Works, Djoko Kirmanto, attending the ground-breaking for the new underpass said, “I hope the construction of the underpass will relieve traffic congestion in Kuta, especially in the area surrounding the Dewa Ruci monument.”

According to Kirmanto, the construction of the underpass is crucial to providing access to Bali’s tourism areas and rest of Bali as a whole.


Let There Be Peace in Bali
Religious Rites Held to Restore Peace and Harmony in Bali

The chairman of the Head Council for Traditional Villages in Bali (MUDP), Jero Putu Suwena Upadesha, announced that the people of Bali would soon undertake a Bumi Sudha Ceremony in an effort to restore harmony to Bali.

The ceremony to be held in three locations in Bali that, according to Hindu teachings, are guardian gates of  sanctity, Suwena explained on Thursday, December 22, 2011, to The Bali Post.

He confirmed that the Bumi Sudha Ceremony was set for December 24, 2011, at Pura Pengubengan Besakih in Karangasem starting at 9:00 a.m.; Pura Ulundanu Batur in Bangli at 10:00 a.m. and Pura Watuklotok in Klungkung at 11:00 a.m..

Attending the ceremonies were the Vice-Governor at Besakih, the Chairman of the Bali House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali) at Pura Ulundanu Batur; and the Governor at Pura Watu Klotok.

While the main ceremonies will take place at the three designated temples, people all across Bali participated in prayers held in their respective locations.

Explained Suwena in the days leading up to the ceremony: “In addition to offering prayers, there are offering that must be made at sacred places surrounding their households. To people of other faiths, we ask that they also offer prayers in accordance with their own beliefs in order guard the natural harmony of nature in Bali.”

He continued, outlining how the ceremonies will also offer the momentum needed for the people of Bali to reflect on their activities in 2011 and how to improve our actions and outcomes on nature and each other in the future.

“Our people have been made uneasy with the conflicts and arguments that have occurred over the past year in our region. Several cases involving traditional villages have erupted into violence; the people have been confronted arguments both for and against large projects, such as the Bali International Park; disputes about building over the mangrove forest at Benoa; and debates over the exploration of geothermal energy in Bedugul, Tabanan,” said Suwena, enumerating areas of ongoing controversy in Bali.

Through the holding of a Bumi Sudha Ceremony, he said, it is hoped that peace and harmony can be restored on the island of Bali. The ceremony, held once each year, was started in 2009.

Meanwhile, an environmental expert from Bali’s Udayana University, Dr. Luh Kartini, said the ceremony represents a needed reflection for those involved in development activities in Bali.

“Any kind of development needs to be controlled and the carrying capacity of our island considered. Don’t let our small island of Bali be squeezed by physical development. Hopefully all the parties involved will choose (in the end) to value Bali,” said Kartini.


Come Fly with Me
View an Exciting Animation of the Benoa to Nusa Dua Toll Way Now Under Construction in Bali

As reported on Balidiscovery.com [It Tolls for Thee]  construction has commenced on the new elevated highway that, when completed, will connect Sanur and Benoa with Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport and Nusa Dua.
In addition to the map shown in the link above, we’d like to share the following video from YouTube providing a bird’s-eye view of what it will be like to ride the new toll way when it opens in January of 2013.

Buckle Your Sea Belts!
 


Attention Shoppers
Tiara Supermarket in Ubung Threatened with Closure as Denpasar Administration Refuses to Extend Lease

As many as 750 employee of the Tiara Supermarket Ubung (Tiara Grosir) and PT Karyajati Megatama may soon find themselves without employment following the refusal by the Denpasar municipal government to extend the lease on the popular hypermarket.

As reported by Beritabali.com, PT Karyajati Megatama has commenced a legal action with the Denpasar Administrative Courts naming the Vice-Mayor of Denpasar, IB Rai Mantra Wijaya, as a defendant.

At a preliminary hearing held on Wednesday, December 21, 2011, tens of representatives of the 750 affected workers from Tiara Grosir attended the court proceedings.

The Chairman of the employees’ union at Tiara Grosir, Fransiskus Asisi Nanang, told the press: “The presence of tens of representatives of the workers’ union at the PTUN (Administrative Court) is to show support for the proceedings aimed at persuading the municipal authorities to show some mercy and extend the lease to PT Karyajati Megatama. If the lease is not extended there will be around 750 employees who will be terminated from their employment because the company will no longer have a place to carry on its business.”

Fransiskus added that almost all the workers faced with the threat of unemployment have families whose lives depend on wages paid by Tiara Grosir Ubung. The union representative added that if the lease is not extended there will be some 2,000 people in the city of Denpasar and surrounding areas will loose their source of livelihoods.

“If an employee has a wife or a husband and one child, this equates to 2,000 people who will no longer eat. For this reason, we implore the municipal government of Denpasar and the company to consider the rights of the employee,” said Fansiskus.

The legal representative of PT Karyajati Megatama, Ketut Jaya, said the lease (HGB) ended on December 12, 2011. Representatives of PT Karyajati Megatama had long ago filed a request for an extension of the lease, which has been refused by the Denpasar administration. According to the attorney, efforts at mediation and negotiation with the government have come to naught.

Ketut Jaya concluded: “That is why PT Karyajati Megatama is suing the Vice-Mayor of Denpasar for refusing to extend the lease on the grounds that the refusal makes no senses and fails to consider the fate of the employees who depend on Tiara Grosir Ubung for an income. These hundreds of employees can not be moved to other branches of Tiara as vacancies do not exists at those branches.”


A Weather Warning
Bali Weather Forecasters Warn That Cyclonic Systems South of Bali Can Bring Strong Winds and Large Waves to Island’s Shore

The Meteorology, Climate and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) for Denpasar, Bali has warned sea tourism and cruise operators to be on guard to the threat of tropical cyclones in the waters surrounding the island through the coming months until February 2012.

Quoted in Beritabali.com, the chief of the BMKG for Bali, Wayan Suaradana, said on Tuesday, December 20, 2011, that topical cyclones occur when deep low-pressure fronts form in the waters south of Bali. The cyclonic lows can whip up winds along Bali’s coast that reach 60 kilometers per hour.

“Fast winds will also stir up waves off Bali’s shore with heights that can reach 5 meters,” he explained.

These weather conditions also result in whirlpools and high waves for vessels at sea. “These are dangerous to shipping and can be very disruptive with waves as high as 5 meters,” said Suaradana.

Suardana said the effects of cyclonic storms could occur anytime between the months of December 2011 and February 2012. Bali’s chief weatherman asked fishermen to be wary and not go to sea when there’s a cyclone forming south of Bali.


Just the Ticket for Dance
Denpasar Parking Attendants Release Compact Disc of Balinese Dance and Music

The ubiquitous parking attendants in Bali’s capital city of Denpasar are apparently men of many parts.

In addition to their daily task of guiding vehicles in and out of tight spaces and collecting the Rp. 2,000 (US$0.22) parking fee, many of the attendants posses lesser-known skills as accomplished stage performers.

The employees of PD Parkir Kota Denpasar have, in fact, launched their own compact disc (CD) showcasing their consummate skills as traditional musicians and dancers.

Kompas.com reports that the CD collection is being reproduced to keep pace with commercial demand and for presentation as a souvenir to Denpasar visitors. 

Nyoman Sudhiantara, the Director of PD Parkir Kota Denpasar, proclaimed: “This is our pride. Maybe they are known only as parking attendants. However, don't be wrong, our parking personnel are people of real ability.”

To cultivate the obvious large reservoir of talent, PD Parkir Kota Denpasar supports the traditional arts efforts of their staff, encouraging freedom and full creativity in their increasingly frequent stage performances.

A recent performance saw 50 of the 800 men employed as parking attendants perform on stage to an enthusiastic reception from an appreciative audience. The appearance included the traditional Catur Bragatu dance and modern dance creations choreographed by Denpasar’s talented “tukang parkir.”


Bali’s Swedish Connection
Bali Native Dewa Made Juniarta Sastrawan Appointed Indonesian Ambassador to Sweden

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has appointed a Bali native as the new Indonesian Ambassador to Sweden

Sworn in as Indonesia’s man in Stockholm, Dewa Made Juniarta Sastrawan took the oath on together with 25 other new Indonesian envoys on Wednesday, December 21, 2011 at the Presidential Palace in Jakarta.

Juniartha’s will also serve as Indonesia’s representative to Latvia.

Dewa Made Juniartha Sastrawan was born in Sungaraja, North Bali in 1961.

A career diplomat, he has served the Director for West European Affairs, Directorate General of American and European Affairs, held numerous international relations jobs in Jakarta and has worked as a member of the Indonesian legation in Hong Kong, London and New York.


Welcome Home Ibu Rob Lim
CNN Hero of the Year Robin Lim Receives ‘Hero’s Welcome” at Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport

Coinciding with the day set aside for honoring mothers in Indonesia, “Ibu” Robin Lim returned to her adopted home of Bali on December 16, 2011, after her whirlwind tour of the U.S.A. during which she was named CNN Hero of the Year before a worldwide TV audience. [See: Robin Lim CNN Hero of the Year]  
to welcome her home in Bali was a large retinue of friends, colleagues and members of the local community, including a large contingent from the Bali Hotels Association.

Also at the airport was a crowd of some 50 well-wishers comprising people that Ms Lim has helped over her years her Bali Foundation [Yayasan Bumi Sehat] There were tears of joy streaming from the face of Robin as, surprised and overwhelmed, she saw the huge crowd of well-wishers. Waving to all, she said over and over again, “I love you.”

Bali Hotels Association's general managers strongly supported her candidacy by generating more than 20,000 votes from hotel employees and guests, with chairman Jean-Charles Le Coz noting that, “tourism should be a positive influence for the people of Bali, and as tourism stakeholders, we admire what ‘Ibu Robin’ does for the community.”

As Hero of the Year 2011, Robin Lim’s cause received US$250,000 together with US$50,000 when being named among the top 10 CNN Heroes finalists.

Shown on Balidisocvery.com “Ibu” Robin Lim's welcome at Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport.


A Maine Line of Business
Hans and Linda Van Der Does Operate Six ‘Toko Indo’ Shops in New England, U.S.A. Selling Jewelry and Accessories from Bali

Seacoastonline.com tells of two part-time Bali residents, Hans and Linda Van Der Does, who run a chain of six Toko Indo stores in New England and Florida selling jewelry and accessories from Bali.

“Toko” means “store” in Indonesian – a name that the Van Der Does have championed for 13 years, starting from their first shop in Provincetown, Massachusetts. Other shops in the U.S.A, are found state of Maine in Portland, Kennebunkport and Ogunquit. They also operate a shop in Key West, Florida and another in Porstmouth, New Hampshire

The shops sell jewelry and accessories personally purchased, designed and manufactured by the husband-wife owners.

Hans and Linda met in Bali where Linda worked as a wholesale buyer and Hans as a shipping and buying agent. Bali remains their home for part of the year when they return to the island to enjoy life on the island and replenish their inventories for the coming year.

Linda explained: "We've been doing this so long that we have a personal relationship with our manufacturers in Bali. It's really like a family. They even have photos of our Son up in the offices."

Toko Indo sells accessories, gifts, Buddhas, hats, bags, socks and costume jewelry.

"I think it really makes a difference that we know everyone we buy from," Linda added.

Some of the proceeds from Toko Indo benefit local communities and charities in Bali.

"Every store has rings that sell for $3, and 100 percent of the proceeds go to the Rotary in Bali," Linda said. "This really helps in Bali. The Rotary does not take a salary and the donations all go to help those in need, especially children with cleft palate." 

Committed to keeping Bali green, the Van Der Does sell Buddha statues made from resin by Balinese craftsmen. "The master carver carves the original Buddha in wood, and casts in resin," said Hans. "We do not want to contribute to the stealing from the local trees. We buy products made with coconut and bamboo woods as these are sustainable."

Toko Indo

Linda and Hans Van Der Does

[www.shoptokoindo.com]


I Took a Little Drink About a Vineyard Ago
St. Regis and Laguna Resorts Send Their Wine Teams to Western Australia In Continuing Commitment to Wine Education for Bali Hospitality Professionals.

The wine sommelier team of The St. Regis Bali Resort recently undertook another one-week wine education trip, this time to Australia, together with two junior wine sommeliers from The Laguna, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa Nusa Dua, Bali. The Resorts’ wine schooling program, now in its second year, did a grand tour of the great wine producing areas of France last year.
d to imparting wine knowledge to young Indonesian hospitality professional, Sommelier Harald Wisemann undertakes weekly training sessions. Part of a drive for excellence at the resort’s signature restaurants; Kayuputi at St. Regis Bali and Arwana at The Laguna Resort & Spa, the payback has included not only dedicated returning diners but also recognition with Wine Spectator Awards as world class dining venues.

Wisemann’s training programs covers a step by step education in wine beginning with the general history of wine, wine mise en place, the wine making process for each varietal, wine etiquette and lessons on assisting and guiding guests in enhancing the dining experience with a perfect wine pairing.

On the Australian trip led by Wisemann, the team from both resorts visited two regions in Western Australia famous for their wineries. This included Margaret River and its is well-known Chardonnay and Cabernet-Sauvignon producers. The team stayed in the Town of Margaret River for 5 days and visited more than 14 wineries including: Voyager Estate, Cullen, Clairault, Xanadu, Wills Domain, Moos Wood, Woodlands, Pierro, Vasse Felix, Leeuwin Estate, Ashbrook and Fraser Gallop. At each wineries the students of obtained insights from owners or wine makers on the history of Margaret River including grape variations, soil, climate and wine-making process. They also participated in wine tastings to complete their understanding.

The educational trip to Australia ended in the region of Pimberton, which is famous for its Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Visiting Picardy and Salitage the team obtained information they are now eager to share with guests at St. Regis Bali and The Laguna Bali.

Both the St. Regis Resort and The Laguna Bali are generous supporters of the annual Bali Wine Auction.

Related Article
[If this is Tuesday, This Must be Bordeaux]


Keeping it Legal
No New Travel Agency Licenses in Bali Issued Since September 2010

As a follow up to [A Moratorium on New Travel Agencies in Bali?]  and a reported ban on new travel agency licenses in Bali in place since September 2010, the head of the Bali Tourism Authority, I.B. Kade Subhisku, has confirmed to Bisnis Bali that no new licenses have been issued by the province since the announcement of the initial moratorium.

According to Subhisku, no new permits have been issued for new agencies over the last 14 months. The moratorium has reportedly been implemented by the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) who issues new licenses while the job of supervision and upgrading agencies falls to the Bali Tourism Authority (Disparda).

Based on surveys conducted by Disparda since the moratorium came into effect, of the 658 travel agents on record with the Bali provincial government only 299 have active and currently valid licenses.

Among those no longer holding active licenses are agencies with unclear business addresses or companies that have changed ownership – none of which can show valid operating licenses.

Subhisku told the press that it was not clear if the moratorium on new agencies was still in effect, saying his office’s focus was more on those agencies with valid operating licenses and dealing with illegal agencies.

“What’s for sure,” said Subhisku, “registered legal agencies must have clear business addresses so we can contact them.”


A Temple Most High
Admission Costs at Bali’s Tanah Lot Temple to increase 100% in 2012

It’s soon going to cost 100% more to visit Bali's iconic Tanah Lot Temple in 2012.

Foreign visitors who now pay Rp. 15,000 (US$1.66) will pay Rp. 30,000 (US$3.33) to visit Tanah Lot when the price increase takes effect. Meanwhile, domestic tourist will see a an admission hike from Rp. 10,000 (US$1.10) to Rp. 25,000 (US$2.78).

The Regent of Tabanan, Ni Putu Eka Wiryastuti, told Beritabali.com that the decision to raise the tariff was reached after much study and extensive discussion.

“I have already fixed the increase for entrance to Tanah Lot at 100% and this amount has been entered into the regional budget (APBD) for 2012,” said Eka.

She said the new admission rates will take effect omce the price increase is socialized to the public.

“The new tariff will come into effect at the latest in March 2012. We don't want to wait too long, providing there are no obstacles. We want to socialize the decision before it is implemented,” said the Tabanan Regent.

Related Article

[Making Tanah Lot a Whole Lot Better


You’re Grand! You're a Hundred Grand!
Bali Hai Cruises Welcomes Their 100,000th Guest of 2011

Bali Hai Cruises – Bali’s leading day cruise, water sports and island outing operator sounded a fanfare welcome their 100,000th guest of 2011 on Saturday, December 24, 2011.
cher and his partner Gorgia received a tumultuous welcome from officers and crew as they stepped aboard Bali Hai II and formally designated as guest number 100,000 of the current year.

Max and Gorgia travelled to Bali from Australia with Flight Centre to spend their Christmas at The Bali Hai Tide Huts on Lembongan Island.

“It is a great surprise for me, I have never won anything and it was a great welcome, with Champagne and a bouquet of flowers,’ said Max. “We have been really looking forward to the trip especially Lembongan and this has just topped it all off’.

Bali Hai Cruise General Manager Rick Williams and Director of Sales Pande Ardika welcomed the guest aboard and congratulated them on behalf of the company’s management.

Shown on Balidiscovery.com are pictures taken as Max and Gorgia are welcomed by Bali Hai Cruises as their passenger number 100,000.

[Aristocat - Castaway Cruise (Nusa Penida)]

[Aristocat - Luxury Sailing Catamaran]

[Aristocat Evening Cruise]

[Lembongan Island Beach Club Cruise] 

[Ocean Rafting Dolphin Cruise]

[Lembongan Island Reef Cruise]

[Ocean Rafting 3 Islands Day Cruise]

[Sunset Dinner Cruise]



I’ve Got You Under My Skin
Western Australian Health Officials Issue Health Warning for Travelers Getting a Tattoo in Bali

A number of Australian media outlets are warning of a threat of HIV infection from having a tattoo in Bali.

The warning comes after Western Australia’s Department of Health issued a [health warning] confirming a Western Australia man had contracted HIV after a visit to a Bali tattoo parlor.

The Western Australian health officials say “all evidence points to a tattoo received recently in Bali as being the source of the infection.”

Tattoo parlors in Indonesia operate in a largely unregulated atmosphere, while Western Australian tattooists follow a strict regime of licensing and mandatory health protocols.

Health officials in Australia are recommending against receiving a tattoo in Bali and suggesting that those who have recently had a tattoo performed on the island consult their doctor and consider the need for HIV and other blood-borne disease testing.

The cases in which HIV has been proven to have been spread by tattoos are exceedingly rare. Nonetheless, health officials have highlighted HIV, hepatitis (both B and C), and other bacterial infections as possible risks to those who undergo tattoo treatment.

Western Australian officials will not release additional details of the person purportedly infected with HIV in Bali or the name of the establishment where the tattoo was performed.

Likening the risk of a tattoo in Bali to that of having unprotected sex, some media are highlighting the rapid rise of HIV infections in Bali where one in four prostitutes is believed to be HIV positive.

Tattoo Precautions

For those who remain committed to receiving a tattoo while visiting Bali, here’s a non-comprehensive list of precautions to consider before “going under the tattooist’s needle:
  • Autoclaves are considered the preferred method of sterilizing tattoo equipment. Pressurized steam kills bacteria. Sterilized or new needles and ink tubes should be presented in a sealed pouch that is opened in front of the client.
  • Gloves must be worn by tattoo artist. The gloves should be removed and replaced every time the tattoo artists leaves the clients or touches a non-disposable item.
  • HIV/AID virus dies within minutes of contact with the air. Hepatitis B viruses, however, can live for weeks. A tattoo artists who touches any unsterilized item (e.g. telephone, spray bottles, ink bottles) must put on new sterilized gloves to prevent cross-contamination.
  • Ink Cups should be disposable and used to hold the ink used in a single tattooing procedure. These cups must be thrown away after the tattoo is done. Cross-contamination is possible if the same ink reservoir is used on different clients. Remember, the tattooist must remove and replace gloves when refilling an ink cup.
  • Needles should be removed from sealed, sterilized pouches in the presence of the client. Look for a “sharps” container for the disposal of used needles after each tattoo. The absence of such equipment should cause the client to question if the tattooist is diligently  following proper health and hygiene procedures.
  • Check for a clean and newly-set-up counters for each new tattoo client. Confirm that disposables are properly handled. Does the tattooist wash his/her hands after finishing a tattoo? Is the shop clean and clinical in appearance? Non-disposable items used in the tattoo process should be segregated and sent to a sterilization systems after each tattoo is completed.


What You Need to Know About the Bali Toll Way
Developers Announce Benoa - Nusa Dua Toll Way Fee will be Rp. 10,000 (US$1.10) When Road Opens in 2013

More details are emerging on the construction of the 12-kilometer-long suspended highway now under construction to connect Benoa Harbor with Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport and Nusa Dua.
  • The project total cost is put at Rp. 2.49 trillion (US$276. 6 million)
  • The project is owned by 7 State owned companies: PT Jasa Marga (60%), PT Pelindo III (20%), PT Angkasa Pura I (10%), PT Wijaya Karya (5%), PT Hutama Karya (2%), PT Adhi Karya (2%) and Bali Tourism Development Corporation (1%).
  • The conglomerate building the toll way have a concession to operate the road for 45 years.
  • The project is expected to take 14 months to complete, with a two-month trial operation period scheduled to begin in March 2013.
  • The toll way is being constructed to allow speeds of up to 80 kilometers per hour.
  • Built over a protected mangrove reserve, developers have promised not to destroy any tress in the process of building the road.
  • The road will have two lanes of traffic travelling in both directions. In addition, there will be two separate side lane reserved exclusively for motorcycles.
  • According to Bisnis Indonesia, Sedans, Jeeps, Pick Up, small trucks and busses (Golongan I) will pay a tentative Rp. 10,000 (US$1.10) to travel on the new roadway.
  • The rate for motorcycles has yet to be announced.
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The Price of Power
Supply of Subsidized Electricity to Bali Hotels Questioned by Bali’s PLN Chief

Bisnis Indonesia reports that hotels in Bali consume an estimated of 41% of the 587 megawatts of subsidized power provided for Bali by the State Power Board (PLN).

The General Manager of PLN-Bali, Dadan Koerniapoera, said: “Until this point, all hotels in Bali, both non-starred and starred properties, continue to consume subsidized electricity. All power supplied (to the island) is subsidized.”

Of Bali’s total power usage an estimated 55% is used by commercial enterprises. The estimated value of the commercial electrical power sector in Bali is put at Rp 350 billion (US$38.9 million).

Hotels are estimated to constitute 8% of all commercial power connections on the island. Because of the size of hotel installations, 41% of commercial connections are thought to go to hotel and accommodaiton providers.

Dadan views the use of subsidized power for the hotel sector as unjust given by what he sees as the high room rates charged by hotels and the fact that, at the same time, only 77% of all private residences in Bali enjoy an electrical power connection.

Acknowledging that PLN is unable to unilaterally raise tariffs, Dadan is urging the House of Representatives (DPR) to review policies on subsidized power to the hotel and business sector.


The Most High and Powerful
Bid Tender Process Ends, Clearing Way for Construction of “Bali Crossing” Power Pylon Project

Bisnis Indonesia confirms that the tender process for the “Bali Crossing” – believed to be, when completed, the world’s tallest electrical pylon construction standing 376-meters high at the Banyuwangi-Gilimanuk straits between Java and Bali.

While not disclosing the name of the company who won the tender process, the Minister for State-Owned Enterprises, Dahlan Iskan, confirmed construction of the “Bali Crossing” lines will commence in early 2012.

When completed, the extremely high power lines will have the ability to carry 3,000 megawatts of power to an island whose current peak usage level is 600 megawatts. The overcapacity is seen as sufficient to supply Bali’s power needs for 25 years to come, with power consumption growing at a rate of 10-11% per year on the island.

Related Article

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Blade Runners No More
Bali Police Arrest Two Men in Bounty Bar Knife Attack

Bali police have made two arrests in the December 16, 2011, stabbing of two men at the Bounty Bar in Kuta.

A 28-year-old Australian, identified as only Jul L, and a 28-year-old Balinese male companion, Made Juliantara, have been taken into police custody for wounding two Australian men Christopher Mete (26) and Jake Benjamin Whitehead (26).

Mete and Whitehead were visiting the popular bar in the company of two Balinese friends, Wayan Sentana and Ketut Mudarta.

Based on interviews conducted by the police with the two arrested men and the victims, police are ascribing the attack to a common bar fight originating from a misunderstanding.

As reported by NusaBali, Juliantara, who works as a security guard, drew a knife and launched a violent attack when involved in a physicle scuffle with Mete, Whitehead and their Balinese friends.

One of the bar patrons who witnessed the fight recognized Juliantara, leading police to make the arrests. When the two assailants were arrested, police were unable to find the knife used in the assaults but did confiscate bloodstained clothing. Juliantara told police he threw the knife away as he fled the Bounty Bar after the attack.

Related Article

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Bali Update #508
June 05, 2006

Bali Update #507
May 29, 2006

Bali Update #506
May 22, 2006

Bali Update #505
May 15, 2006

Bali Update #504
May 08, 2006

Bali Update #503
May 01, 2006

Bali Update #502
April 24, 2006

Bali Update #501
April 17, 2006
 

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