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Komplek Pertokoan
Sanur Raya No. 27
Jl. By Pass Ngurah Rai,
Sanur, Bali, Indonesia

Tel:
++62 361 286 283

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++62 361 286 284

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1-800-506-8633

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Bali News by Bali Update
BALI UPDATE #946 - 20 October 2014

IN THIS UPDATE


Seeking Exclusivity
Garuda Seeks Permission to Create Dedicated Terminal at Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport

PT Ankasa Pura I, the airport authority for Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport, has yet to agree to a request form Garuda Indonesia to be allowed to create a dedicated terminal for the exclusive use of the national flag carrier's domestic and international passengers.

As reported by Bisnis.com, a memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed in late 2011 announcing Garuda's desire to establish a dedicated terminal at Bali's airport to better serve their passengers. The request to be allowed to establish an exclusive Garuda Terminal facility was delivered by Garuda's CEO, Emirsyah Satar, to PT Angkasa Pura I during a meeting between the two state-owned companies at Nusa Dua late last year.

Garuda's wants to create an exclusive and dedicated passenger terminal, departure area, arrival area, immigration clearance area, transit lounge and access areas to the airline's aircraft parking bays,
.

The spokesman for the airport development project, Hary Budi Walyo, said that the request from Garuda was under review.

Garuda Indonesia currently operates dedicated terminals for their flights at terminals 2E and 2F at Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta International Airport.


Some Like it Hot!
Opening Round in Ubud's '2012 Texas Chili Cook-off Gets Underway in Bali on February 19, 2012

In what is shaping up to be a "heated battle," contenders for the right to call themselves the best "Texas Chili Maker in Bali" are preparing to pit their cooking skill in Bali's "2012 Texas Chili Cook-off" to be held at the appropriately-named Melting Pot Game Room Pub in Ubud, Central Bali.

The fun gets underway on Sunday, February 19, 2012, with the public invited to drop by and sample the cooking of contestants vying to prepare their rendition of "the best down-home chili recipes" in a friendly competition among island friends.

The "Text Chili Cook-off" is a long-standing Texas tradition involving a large group of chili aficionados cooking up pots of bubbling, spicey chili while at the same time playing to the crowd, trying to impress the panel of judges and gathered spectators with their kitchen acumen. Each recipe must be prepared on site from scratch with the final selection made via a blind tasting.

Entrants can compete as individuals or as teams. Showmanship also counts with teams encouraged to bring props, create suitable costumes and even bring supporting teams of Texas cheerleaders to help sway the popular vote category in support of their spiced creation.

Professional contestants and local restaurants are also invited to try to win "bragging rights" by entering to win the competition, now in its second year in Bali.

Competition will take place in three categories: CASI (Chili Appreciation Society International), freestyle and vegetarian-  together with a special and coveted "People's Choice Award.

The February 19th event is a warm up to the main event - the 2nd Annual Texas Chili Cook-off scheduled to be held in Ubud on October 21, 2012.

Come to Ubud on February 19, 2012, to compete or merely to taste the best chili recipes on the island. The day will include live music, cold beer and organized games.

For more information or to register your participation [Email]  or telephone+62-(0)812 364 0490

The Melting Pot Game Room Pub is located on Jalan Pengoseka Hanoman, across the road from Indian Delight Restaurant, in downtown Ubud.


A Happy Ending in Ende
Trans Nusa Jet Bursts Tire In Ende, Flores on Kupang to Bali Flight.

A British Aerospace BAE-146/200 Aviastar Jet operated by Trans Nusa Airlines burst a tire while landing at Haji Hasan Aroeboesman Airport in Ende (Flores) on a Kupang - Ende - Labuan Bajo - Denpasar flight on Wednesday, January 25, 2012.

The incident occurred at 2:30 pm when Trans Nusa flight MV 837's left-inside tire burst, creating a loud explosive noise and a cloud of smoke.

There were no injuries reported in connection with the mishap that, according to Kompas.com, caused panic among the the the public waiting at the airport to greet arriving passengers and among passengers waiting to embark on the Bali-bound flight.

Genoveva Ule, at the airport with her child to greet her husband, Frans Ave, a local parliamentarian on the inbound Trans Nusa flight, said, "I immediately called my child, (saying) let's go to the airplane, the airplane is on fire."

Passengers on the aircraft said the plane made a hard landing on the runway, followed by a loud noise. The plane, however, continued a normal roll out before parking on the apron. Passengers only became aware of the damaged tire when they disembarked the jet.

The plane was carrying 59 passengers at the time of the incident.

Meanwhile, the business development manager of Trans Nusa Aviation Mandiri, Vudhy Karsidin, confirmed the plan had suffered a burst tire. He said the tire failed ahead of the schedule routine replacement time recommended by the manufacturer.

The incident caused a delay for 41 passengers who were were scheduled to fly on Wednesday afternoon from Ende to Labuan Bajo and continuing to Denpasar (Bali). The passengers were only able to continue their journey on Thursday morning, January 26, 2012, at 9:00 a.m. after a replacement tire could be flown in from Kupang.



European Travel to Bali in Eclipse?
Garuda Indonesia Reduces Flights to Amsterdam While Increasing Asia-Pacific Flight to Tokyo, Taipei and Kuala Lumpur

Following the announcement of AirAsia's withdrawal of its European and Indian flights, the accelerating decline in European travel is further underlined by an announcement by the Indonesian flag carrier Garuda Indonesia that it is reducing flight frequencies to Amsterdam.

Quoted in Bisnis.com, Pujobroto, vice-president for corporate communication for Garuda Indonesia, said, "In accordance with the economic condition in Europe that remains in recession, effective March 1, 2012, Garuda will reduce its flight frequency to Amsterdam from seven to four times a week."

The revamped schedule between Amsterdam and Jakarta will see flights using Airbus A330-200 flying to Europe on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday and returning from Europe to Indonesia on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

Meanwhile, Garuda has announced plans to increase flights in the Asia-Pacific with new services to Haneda in Tokyo, Japan and Taipei, Taiwan.

Pujobroto said increased demand for travel ex Japan and Taipei will allow Garuda Indonesia to begin operating a new route from Bali (Denpasar) to Haneda (Tokyo) on April 27, 2012, and from Jakarta to Taipei on May 19, 2012.

Reflecting the relative health of economies in the Asia-Pacific region, Garuda will also increase flight frequencies between Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur to three flights daily starting in February 2012.

Denpasar to Haneda flights will operate five times per week on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday with GA 886 departing Bali at 3:30 p.m. arriving at Haneda at 11:30 p.m. local time.  GA 887 from Haneda to Bali will leave at 1:00 a.m. arriving in Bali at 7:00 a.m.. The Haneda flights will operate using Airbus 330-300 configured for 257 passengers.



Jakarta Taipei flights will operate on a daily basis with GA852 departing Jakarta at 23:45 and arriving in Taipei at 6:15 a.m. The return flight on GA 853 leaves Taipei at 7:15 a.m. landing in Jakarta at 11:35 a.m. The Taipei service will use Boeing 737-800 NG equipment.



Related Article

[AirAsia Axes Flights to Europe and India]



Prices that Drive You to Drink
Denpasar, Bali administration Increasing Licensing Fees for Business that Sell Alcoholic Beverages

The Jakarta Post reports that plans by South Bali officials to increase as much 300% the cost of a license necessary to sell alcoholic beverages is angering both Bali business owners and tourism leaders.

Denpasar's increase in licensing is yet another cost that must be factored in to the selling price in a Country where import and other taxes imposed on alcoholic beverages are among the highest in the world.

Ida Bagus Gede Sidharta Putra, chairman of the Denpasar branch of the Indonesia Hotels and Restaurants Association (PHRI), said: “Prices of alcoholic beverages in Bali are 1.5 to two times more expensive compared with Singapore and other countries. With this sudden increase in the licensing fee, how are we supposed to adjust the prices?”

Under the new policy, starred hotels pay Rp. 5 million (US$ 520) for each alcoholic beverage outlet valid for 5 years. The old price for the same license was Rp. 1.5 million (US$ 166).

Non-starred hotels will pay Rp. 2.5 million (US$ 277) - an increase from the old license fee of Rp. 750,000 (US$ 83).

Duty free shops selling alcohol will now pay Rp. 7 million (US$ 777) representing a massive increase from the former license cost of Rp. 2 million (US$ 222).

Pub, restaurants, cafes and supermarkets wishing to sell alcoholic beverages must now higher licensing fees: Pubs and bars now pay Rp. 1.5 million; restaurants and cafes Rp. 2.5 million; and supermarkets/retailers Rp. 5 million.


Let's Just Talk About It!
Bali Spirit Festival Host Free Public Concert in Ubud, Saturday, February 18, 2012 to Encourage Open Dialogue on HIV/AIDS

Bali Spirit Festival will host a free public concert at the Ubud Soccer Field on Saturday, February 18, 2012 from 5:00 -11:00 p.m. The open-air concert will feature some of Indonesia's best live musical acts, including Bali's award-winning KIS Band.

Part of an ongoing educational campaign to raise public awareness on the HIV epidemic which included the community-wide outreach initiative AYO!Kita Bicara (Let's Talk About) HIV/AIDS.

The fifth in a series of annual concerts sponsored by the Bali Spirit Festival, the musical event is geared towards Balinese audiences.

Last year's event attracted 3,000 people to the Ubud Soccer field.

Using music and dance to raise awareness on the growing threat of HIV/AIDS in Bali, the music and the messages delivered to the thousands expected to attend, the February 18, 2012 event forms a central part of theAYO! Kita Bicara outreach activities.

" We’re expecting another great turnout this year,” said Wiwi, Coordinator of the Bali Spirit Festival’s Community Outreach Programs, “and with an all-Indonesian lineup, we’re hoping that more local Balinese will enjoy themselves and pay attention to the serious threat of AIDS here on Bali. Especially youngsters.”

The AYO!Kita Bicara's Edu-Spirit Workshop initiative provide educational workshops for hundreds of school-aged teens in 26 schools in 2011 supported an aggressive media campaign to raise awareness about alarming infection growth numbers.

The latest data collected by the Gianyar Commission of AIDS shows the number of people infected with HIV or AIDS has more than doubled in Gianyar, from 181 cases to 405 cases in one year (2010-2011).

In addition to live music from the main stage, the event in Ubud will present art performances, a reproductive health consultation & campaign booth, and a youth expression space. On the main stage, a video screen will share information on HIV & AIDS and footage regarding AYO! Kita Bicara and related organizations and their work in the community. Provided as a free service to the people of Ubud and is financed by the BaliSpirit Festival, the event also enjoys support from Yamaha and Sutra Condoms.

Ayo! Kita Bicara (Let’s Talk About) HIV/AIDS is an AIDS awareness initiative which uses innovative school based HIV prevention and education to support high school students in Bali’s most at risk areas.

Ayo’s! school education activities represent a fresh and innovative effort to stop the alarming spread of HIV and AIDS in Bali, as well as to curb discrimination against Balinese victims of HIV and AIDS and their families.

For more information on [AYO!Kita Bicara HIV/AIDS]  
 


Putting Food on Bali's Table
Agriculturalist Predict a Coming Food Crisis for Bali if Island Does Not Rediscover and Revitalize its Agricultural Roots

Bali's agricultural society is under threat. Not only are traditional farming lands being diverted to new uses, but the vocation of farming is increasingly being abandoned by the Balinese.

At the same time, Bali's traditional subak irrigation systems is also declining into disarray. As a result, agriculture in Bali is not being optimized. Adding to Bali's grief, prices for agricultural produce drops when Bali's brings its crops to market. All these factors, in the eyes of some agricultural experts, are foreshadowing a coming food crisis in Bali.

As reported in The Bali Post, the island is very dependent on food imports necessary to put food on the plates of visitors and residents alike. Professor Mertha, an agricultural expert from Bali's Udayana University, said on Thursday, January 26, 2012: "We must be proud of our ability to purchase food from other regions. Instead, we need to become self-sustaining in meeting Bali's food demands."

The respected agriculturalist, who was born in Tabanan, Bali, described how Bali has traditionally enjoyed a bountiful harvest. Yet, each year Bali is compelled to import tens of tons of rice and vegetables each day. According to Mertha, the failure to be self-sufficient in food needs to be resolved by taking definitive steps to protect and encourage farming on the island.

Among the steps that must be taken are urgent repairs of the current agricultural system. Agricultural extension services providing accurate and professional farming advice are needed to assist farmers in maximizing their crops with the latest farming techniques.

Professor Mertha complains that agriculture in Bali is alway consigned to a back seat position, with the welfare of farmers given little importance by the government. Supporting this view, the chairman of the Bali Agriculture Association (HKTI), Professor Nyoman Supartha, claims that the government's commitment to farming is more conceptual than real. "The government's programs to overcome agricultural problems is grounded in cliche. The government is too focussed on production, when in fact the farmers know how to grow crops," said Suparta.

Supartha's vision for agriculture includes support for agribusinesses, going beyond a limited focus on only the production of crops. To do this, the government in the future must develop and strengthen marketing systems for Bali produce. The Agriculture Department must cooperate with the Department of Trade and tourism stakeholders to ensure prices and markets are sustained. Branding programs are also needed to create a commitment to locally produced products.

An instructor in farming at the Warmadewa University, Dr. Ir. I Gusti Bagus Udayana, said the problem lies with the delicate nature of Bali's agriculture production, demanding technologies and transportation methods - all inter-related and necessary to strengthen the farming sector. The other problem of Bali's agriculture is the seasonal nature of the business, making sustainable year-round supply problematic.

Another agricultural educator, Drs. I Wayan Arjana, said the government needs to take concrete steps to save Bali's agriculture. He says preserving agricultural lands is a pressing problem that needs urgent attention from the government. Adding: "To date, efforts by the government to advance the agricultural sector remains mostly conceptual. There is still no program in place to raise up the farming sector. The change of use in former agricultural lands to other uses dominates the current situation."

Related Articles

[The Seeds of Success]

[Madé, Madé, Pak Petani, How Does Your Garden Grow?]

[Bali’s Roots Grow on its Rice Terraces]

[Losing Paradise in Bali]

[Bali Agriculture at the Crossroads


Join the Sanur Film Nights - Cancelled
Schedule of Free International Films for Sanur Film Nights in Bali Through July 13, 2012

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Due to problems with securing a suitable venue, the Sanur Film Nights have been cancelled until further notice. The organizers regret any inconvnience caused.

In what has become something of a Bali tradition, the Sanur Film Nights are held every second Friday. Open to the community without charge, the door opens at 7:00 pm for a 7:30 pm showing at the Power of Now Oasis at the Mercure Sanur Resort.

Please find the showing schedule for the first half of 2012:

Friday, February 10, 2012
  • Balibo - Directed by Robert Connolly (2009)
As Indonesia prepares to invade East Timor, five Australian based journalist go missing. Balibo is a political thriller that tells the story of happenings that have been covered up for many years


Friday, February 24, 2012
  • Close Up - Directed by Ho Christi (2011)
Dive into the magic underwater world around the Raja Ampat Islands of Indonesia with its wonderful creatures, unlimited colors and countless shapes. The fascinating marine life diversity in the Raja Ampat area is one of the richest recorded on Earth.

Friday, March 9, 2012
  • Conversations with God - Directed by Stephen Simon (2007)
The true story of author Neale Dinals Walsch, who, at the lowest point in his life, asks God some very tough questions
 

Friday, April 6, 2012
  • Modern Times - Directed by Charlie Chaplin (1936)
The film is a comment on the desperate employment and fiscal conditions many people faced during the Great Depression, conditions created, in Chaplin's view, by the efficiencies of modern industrialization.

Friday, April 20, 2012
  • Four Documentaries on Indonesia - Directed by Robert Lamelson
Four documentaries : Jathilan, Kites and Monsters, Ritual Burdens and The Bird Dance showing different aspects of cultural life in Java and Bali

Friday, May 4, 2012
  • Hilary and Jackie - Directed by Anand Tucker (1998)
The tragic story of world renowned classic cellist Jacqueline du Pré, as told from the point of view of her sister, flautist Hilary du Pré-Finzi

Friday, May 18, 2012
  • Delicatessen - Directed by Jean-Pierre Jaunet and Marc Caro (1991)
A futuristic comedy of a fresh and sublimely entertaining tale about 'food'

Friday, June 1, 2012
  • To Kill a Mockingbird - Directed by Robert Mulligan (1962)
A widowed attorney with two young children accepts the challenge of defending a black man wrongly accused of rape in their racial divided small town.


Friday, June 15, 2012
  • Buddha's Lost Children - Directed by Mark Verkerk (2006)
In the remote borderlands of Thailand's Golden Triangle, a professional Thai-boxer turned Buddhist monk devotes himself to the care of the poorest hill tribe children.


Friday, June 29, 2012
  • Searchin' for the Heart of Heartlands - Directed by Dre Didderiens
Three documentaries about the short-term confrontations between the filmmaker and the unknown that make his work become the effect of all those moments linked together.

Friday, July 13, 2012
    z with Bashir - Directed by Ari Folman (2008)
An Israeli film director interviews fellow veterans of the 1982 invasion of Lebanon to reconstruct his own memories of his term of service in that conflict.


A Herd Instinct
Bali's Elephant Safari Park Participates in Elephant Safari Parade Auction to Help Save Asia's Largest Pachyderms

On Saturday, January 14, 2012 the ABN AMRO Elephant Parade Grand Auction wound up in Singapore, managing to raise $1,781,000 from the sale of a large "herd" of fiberglass elephants painted by leading artists from around the world.
0 of the total sales were set aside for The Asian Elephant Foundation and Wildlife Reserves Conservation Fund.

The Elephant sales took place in two rounds. The opening auction on January 12, 2012, was held at the St. Regis Hotel where 38 elephants were sold by leading auction house Sotheby's. The remaining elephants went under the auction hammer on Sunday, January 14, 2012 at a Champagne brunch and Champagne sundowner held at the Fullerton Hotel.

Fetching top dollar at the auction was an elephant painted by renowned Filipino artist Ronald Venture, selling for S$62,000.

Mike Spits, co-founder of Elephant Parade said: “I am very pleased that these exceptional and lovable works of art have found new homes. At the same time, we have also managed to raise funds for The Asian Elephant Foundation and the Wildlife Reserves Singapore Conservation Fund, which will be channeled to ensure a sustainable future for our ecosystem and its inhabitants. Through this exhibition in Singapore, I am very happy to see that our Elephant Parade family has grown bigger, which means more people are now aware about the plight of the Asian elephant.”

Also participating in the Singapore auction were the owners of Bali Adventure Tours and the Elephant Safari Park and Lodge, Nigel and Yanie Mason.

The Masons purchased "Damaged Dumbo" by Renowned Filipino artist Renato L. Barja, Jr. and "Shivakari" by Singapore-based Australian artist Katrina Read.

Paying some US$30,000 for the two elephants via the Sotheby "on-line auction, these two objects d'art will soon be on display at the Elephant Museum located at the entrance to their popular Elephant Safari Park in Taro, near Ubud in Bali.

[Bali Elephant Tour - Elephant Safari Tour]


The Rainbow Connection
Bali's Jalan Dhyana Pura Offers a Mecca of Night Spots Catering to Gay Travelers

While accommodation providers, restaurants and night spots are overwhelmingly "gay friendly" - there is a growing list of bars centered on Jalan Dhyana Pura in the Seminyak region of Bali, focussed on serving gay travelers.

Trendy and normally only becoming busy after 9 p.m. until the early hours of the following day, these bars normally feature entertainment ranging from drag shows to exotic male dancers.
  • Mixwell - Jalan Dhyana Pura No.6
  • Bali Joe - Jalan Dhyana Pura No. 8
  • Club Cosmo - Jalan Dhyana Pura (across from Mixwell and Bali Joe), located in the Gosha Plaza
  • Bottoms-Up Bar - Also on Jalan Dhyana Pura. It's next to Bali Joe on Jalan Caplak Tanduk No. 10 in the Dhyana Pura Street Arcade.
  • FaceBar - Jalan Dhyana Pura, Located between Bottoms Up and Bali Joe.


On Your Mark, Get Set . . .
Bali's Badung Regency Preparing Regulations to Control Hygiene and Health Practice at Local Tattoo Parlors

Following unconfirmed reports from Western Australian Health Officials of an HIV contamination traced to a Bali tattoo parlor, the Badung regency of Bali is drafting regulations to prevent the spread of blood-borne diseases via tattoo shops in southern Bali.

Vivanews reports that a Regent (Bupati) decree will soon be issued making the new regulations law for the entire regency which encompasses most of southern Bali.

The vice-regent of Badung, Ketut Sudikerta, confirmed the regulation is being drafted following following a study conducted by the Indonesia Ministry of Health and reports from Western Australian Health Officials.

The regulation will dictate hygiene practices that must be implemented by the numerous tattoo shops found along Kuta beach.

Related Articles

[A Diagnostic Dilemma]

[I’ve Got You Under My Skin]


Bali Lifts Rabies Health Alert
Declining Rabies Cases and Dog Bites Prompt Downgrading of Bali's Rabies Status

The Jakarta Globe reports that Bali has lifted a rabied health alert in place since 2008.

A dramatic decrease in cases has precipitated the lifting of the health alert. In explaining the change in rabies alert status, Nyoman Sutedja of the Bali Health Agency said, “rabies has now declined to an endemic level and there have been no deaths reported his year."

Government statistics show 26 people died in 2011, down from 83 in 2010.

Dog bites remain high, but have also significantly reduced. 50,628 bites were reported in 2011, less than the 67,021 bites one year before. In 2009, only 21,806 bites were recorded.



Bali authorities are still working to educate the public on the importance of obtaining a vaccine shot as soon as possible after being bitten by a dog. In 2011, only 47,827 (94.4%) of a total 50,628 reported bite cases received vaccine.

Explained Sutedja, “The people who were not given the vaccine were usually in remote areas that couldn’t be reached by our rabies center, and some of them decided that because their injury was small, they probably weren’t at risk."

The drop in rabies cases follows a mass vaccination and elimination program carried out by the government on Bali's dog population.


Related Article

[Down for the Count?]


Playing by Chinese Rules
Chinese Bureaucrats Accused of Thwarting Growth in PRC Arrivals to Bali

Growth in Chinese tourist arrivals to Bali is being stunted by a legal and bureaucratic impasse.

The Chinese government will apparently not give its citizens permission to visit Bali and the rest of Indonesia unless they can first present a visa. Such a requirement, however, is at odds with the current law in Indonesia which allows PRC passport holders the right to obtain a 30-day visa-on-arrival upon touchdown in Indonesia after paying a US$25 fee.

The Chinese traveler wishing to visit Indonesia is in a "Catch 22" scenario. Despite their ability to show Chinese officials a round-trip ticket back to Bali and demonstrate that a visa can be issued upon arrival in Indonesia, the mainland Chinese bureaucrats are holding firm on their demand that an Indonesian visa must be shown before departure.

The Indonesian Tourist Promotion Board (BPPI) has lobbied Indonesia's President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to put the visa impasse issue on his agenda of discussion topics during a coming visit to the PRC.

The Indonesia government has placed great stake in the ability to grow the number of Chinese visitors to Indonesia, especially during traditional travel periods such as Chinese New Years.


Looking Good on the Verge of 30
Nusa Dua Beach Hotel & Spa, Bali Completes Multi-million Dollar Renovation

Completing a multi-million dollar renovations that began in 2010, the Nusa Dua Beach Hotel and Spa, Bali can now boats an extensive range of rejuvenated rooms and facilities.
e’ve accomplished our goal of restoring Nusa Dua Beach Hotel & Spa to the grand splendor for which it’s been known,” said Reto Torriani, General Manager of the 297-room, 85-suite property.

“The refreshed spaces and brand-new rooms offer guests the latest contemporary comforts and many have already told us we’ve exceeded their expectations,” he said.

“The resort has never looked better and will continue to evolve, but we have completely remade the hotel well before its 30th anniversary in 2013,” Torriani added

The resort’s guest rooms and suites present upmarket amenities set in traditional Balinese architecture. Each room and suite marries local artworks and motifs with dark wood touches and earth-tone fabrics, complete with chairs on the terrace or balcony for a cozy beach-cottage feeling.

The renovations and improvements have allowed the resort to upgrade the previously Superior Rooms to be Deluxe Rooms, and the previously Deluxe Rooms to be Premier Rooms.

Renovation work on this iconic landmark complex include giving Bali’s first-ever spa a face-lift. Mr Torriani said that everything but the shell of the spa was replaced. “We didn’t just renovate—this was reconstruction,” he said. “We put in new floors, walls, bathtubs—everything!”

As part of the spa rejuvenation, a review of treatments offered by the spa was also undertaken, with the spa using world-renowned Pevonia Botanica products, for its facial menu.

The 22-room spa surround a 25-meter lap pool complemented with a sauna, steam room, Jacuzzi, cool pool, fitness centre, aerobics studio, squash and tennis courts, mountain bikes, basketball ring area and an indoor games room.

Last year also saw the re-launch of a completely newly conceptualized Maguro Asian Bistro, overlooking a refitted swimming pool and its sunken pool bar. Also in 2011, the Nusa Dua Beach Hotel & Spa launched it's new lifestyle bar "The Lobby." The lounge bar is until 2 a.m.

Renowned Indonesian architect and interiors expert Hadiprana oversaw the design of The Lobby, which incorporates authentic Balinese touches in a lounge bar and veranda setting, with an ergonomically sensitive interior. This extends onto a visually striking outside area where visitors can enjoy the chilled ambience and evocative views over the resort and the ocean.

“These major developments will fully reinforce the hotel’s position as one of the most important properties in Southeast Asia as well as one of the most innovative and iconic hotels in Nusa Dua,” said Torriani.


Adopting a Dharma Path
Dharma Living Workshop in Bali February 4-5, 2012

A Dharma workshop on the use of the Eastern traditions of movement and meditation in order to integrate Buddhist practice with healthy lifestyles will come to Ubud, Bali - February 4-5, 2012.
eacher Rod Lee of the Tibetan Buddhist Society of Sydney will lead the workshop. He is a professional Shiatsu massage therapist and 30-year veteran of Tai Chi practice.

During the two-day workshop, Rod will help participants explore how Eastern mind-body traditions can be combined with the teachings of the Buddha to strengthen both physical and mental well-being, and to support a life of wisdom and compassion.

The requested fee for this two-day workshop:
  • Foreign visitors: Rp. 1,400,000 (US$155
  • Local expatriates: Rp. 700,000 (US$77)
  • Indonesian citizens: Rp. 350,000 IUS$39)
Course fee includes a choice of freshly prepared soup, juice, and tea each day courtesy of Betel Nut Restaurant in Ubud.

[Betel Nut]  will serve as the venue for the Workshop.

Participation in the Workshop will also support the Dharma desire of the Ubud Buddhist Group (UBG), followers of the teachings of the Dalai Lama and Dagpo Lama Rinpoche, to establish a retreat and study center in the hills of Bali. The UBG has recently acquired an 1.8 hectares parcel of land and are now raising funds to build the centre. The future center has already been given a name by the Dalai Lama of “Ser Ling Chö Kor Ling” - “The Place of the Turning of the Dharma Wheel in the Land of Gold .”

For more information or to register [Email Rana


Bali Report First Rabies Death of 2012
Komang Budiada of Kintamani Dies at Singaraja General Hospital Marking First Rabies Fatality for Bali in 2012

The death of a Komang Budiada, a 24-year-old man from Bangli at the Singaraja General Hospital in North Bali is recorded as the first rabies death in Bali for 2012.

The National News Agency Antara, quoted Nyoman Pasek Sukerman, the spokesman for the hospital, saying, "He appears to the the first rabies patient to die this year."

Meanwhile, the Assistant-Director of services for the Hospital, Dr. Luh Widiasturi, confirmed that the man, who came from the village of Satra in the Kintamanu area of Bali, died at 3:00 a.m. on Friday, January 27, 2012.

Although rabies is suspected as the cause of death, formal verification of that fact awaits confirmation from Denpasar where blood samples from the man are being examined.


How You Gonna Keep 'Em Down on the Farm?
Bali to Legislate Conservation of Rice Fields and Agricultural Lands

Beginning in 2013, the provincial government of Bali plans to introduce laws to preserve and protect agricultural lands on the island. The proposed new provincial rules are a continuance of Law Number 41 of 2009 regarding the protection of agricultural lands.

As reported by BeritaBali.com, the head of the Agricultural and Food Crops Service for Bali, Putra Suryawan, told the press that that the steps will provide protection for an estimated 81,900 hectares of productive farm lands. He also stated that with this amount of land under active cultivation Bali would be able to be self-sufficient in rice.

"If we protect all this land now, this proves we can preserve the current surplus in rice. However, if we continue with the tolerances provided for in the provincial law Number 16 or 2009 on zoning (RTRWP) that allow a 10% change in land use for 20 years that would result in only 810 hectares of agricultural land remaining in 20 years time," explained Suryawan.

Putra Suryawan added that if the provincial regulations to preserve agricultural lands is implemented, Bali will also provide incentives for rice field owners to encourage them to keep their lands. Current data from the Agricultural and Food Crops Service shows that the loss of rice fields has shrunk to 140 hectares each year. This is down from a previous high of 200 hectares of rice fields being diverted annually from agricultural pursuits.


All Aboard!
Indonesia Considers a Super-Fast Rail Link that Would Connect Jakarta and Surabaya in Less than 3 Hours

The Ministry of Transportation is hoping to create a super-fast Agro Cahaya train service connecting Jakarta and Surabaya, inspired by the Shinkansen Japanese Express Train. The new train service would be able to travel the 685 kilometer distance acorss the length of Java in just 2 hours and 53 minutes.

The new system is estimated to cost Rp. 180 trillion (US$20 billion) and is estimated to be built by 2014

Quoted by Bisnis.com, the Deputy-minister for Transportation, Bambang Susantono, said: "The plan to build a super-fast train service is still an early concept. In 2008, we did a preliminary feasibility study with the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the Japan Transport Consult. We will follow the concept of the Shinkansen Train Service in Japan which has operated for 45 years with zero accidents."

He explained that the desire to connect Jakarta and Surabaya with a super-fast train reflects the fact that the two cities represent the two largest economies in Indonesia and the chance to bolster the economies of the cities located along the proposed route.

The Deputy-minister compared the proposed Indonesian super-fast train system to other services now in operation between Tokyo and Osaka, Beijing and Shanghai, and Boston and Washington, D.C..

Bambang said the super-fast train is planned to travel at a maximum speed of 300 kilometers per hour with an average speed of 250 kilometers per hour. The current rail service between Jakarta and Surabaya is traveled by the Argo Bromo at a speed of 90 kilometers per hour. The super-fast train would be powered by electricity with each train comprised of 8-12 rail cars capable of carrying 600 passengers. The system would require an elevated rail to allow the trains to operate above the vehicular traffic grid.

Bambang explained that the super-fast trip will consume US$14.3 billion for construction, not including land acquisition costs, detailed engineering design and other elements which will bring the total bill to US$20 billion.

The pre-feasibility study estimated the rail system will cost US$29-30 million per running kilometers (Rp. 261 billion). A similar system in China cost Rp. 223 billion per kilometers and in Taiwan Rp. 331 billion per kilometer. Construction is estimated to take 10 years, divided into three periods: 5-6 years for the construction of the system and the remaining years for trial operations.

Malaysia and Thailand are reportedly also undertaking a study on a super-fast rail systems connecting the two nations.

The Deputy-minister said that the proposed super-fast rail system could be operated by the state-owned PT Kereta Api Indonesia or by a private company. He said the price of the rail trip would need to be cheaper that an air ticket. Bambang said plans are to use private-public partnership or a program of cooperation with the private sector to help realize the project.

He added that the plan for the super-fast rail system running across north Java was still in the pre-feasibility stage and the decision on weather or not to move ahead to a fully-fledged feasibility study depends on a number of factors, including the priority given to the project by the public and the political will to move ahead with the concept.



A Banana Slip Up
Near Tragedy Averted as 5 Chinese Tourists Injured in Tanjung Benoa, Bali Boating Accident

Tragedy was narrowly averted at in South Bali on Sunday, January 22, 2012, when a banana boat collided with a glass bottom boat in the Wisata Tirta Water Recreation Area at Tanjung Benoa.

As the result of that incident, five people were rushed for treatment at the BIMC Hospital and the Kasih Ibu Hospital.

A police spokesman confirmed the incident to DenPost , reporting that a glass-bottom boat driven by Herman Rudianto Ngajo (19) carrying 10 tourists had been named as a criminal suspect in the sea collision. Police went on to describe the incident in which 5 Chinese tourists boarded a banana boat drawn by a speed boat driven by Ardian Nguru Weo (23). The police said the glass-bottom boat struck the banana boat driven by the 19-year-old man from Bandar Lampung, South Sumatra.

"The glass-bottom boat with a capacity for ten passengers wanted to head for Turtle Island and suddenly turned left, striking the banana boat, sending its five passengers crashing into ocean.

One of the Chinese tourists, Lin Tzu Cun (28) was hospitalized with a leg fracture requiring surgery. Huang Hasin Yuan (35) suffered a broken arm and internal injuries. Thee remaining three passengers on the banana boat suffered superficial injuries not requiring hospitalization.



Predators in Paradise
Bank Indonesia Deputy and Udayana University Rector Say the Balinese are Getting the Short Shrift from Bali Tourism

A deputy of the Bali branch of Bank Indonesia offered a biting rebuke on the current state of Bali tourism in comments publish by The Bali Post.

According to I Made Sadguna, despite record numbers of visitors to Bali, the Balinese people are only reaping table crumbs and substantial negative impacts from the island's tourism industry.

Continuing his verbal indictment, Sadguna said: "There are many predators in Bali's tourism system who are threatening the sustainability of the island's tourism. The Balinese are only dispensed trash - be that physical trash, social trash, and even cultural trash."

Made Sadguna called on the island's provincial government to pursue quality tourists who seek tourist products and activities beneficial to the people of Bali. These steps, he believes, should include the development of spiritual tourism, nature tourism and similar activities that will mitigate the negative influences of tourism growth. Adding: "If this can be achieved, the income of the people will increase, the economy will grow rapidly, inflation will be low and employment opportunities will be created. Economic growth will become sustainable."

Lending support to Sadguna's viewpoint was the rector of the Udayana University, Prof. Dr. I Made Bakta. The man in charge of Bali's largest institution of higher education said the bounty of Bali tourism is only enjoyed by a small select group resulting in economic disparities that are unfair. "We (the people of Bali) only earn small dribbles (of prosperity) and negative outcomes, because the enjoyment accrues to people from outside Bali." said Bakta.

The educator said community leaders have to get a new focus on sustainable tourism. "We must not only play the role of receiving donations when (in fact) it's the regulations that need to be redrawn," said Bakta

Bakta also that tourism stakeholders must not only pursue quantity, but also quality in tourism in the form of tourist visitors with higher spending levels. "In addition to seeking quality visitors, Bali must also develop tourism with a positive impact. Through products such as spiritual tourism, nature tourism and alike the negative impact of tourism can be reduced," he explained.

This can be achieved, he believes, if the government, academics, tourism industry members and the people combine forces. 'I am optimistic that Bali tourism can advance, especially as we continue to have a high branding value," said Bakta.


Stormy Weather
Bali Suffers a Week of Stormy Weather Causing Deaths, Damage, Power Outages, Flooding and Port Closures

Bali together with the southern portions of Java have experienced hellish weather during the fourth week of January that ushers in Chinese New Years and Galungan holidays - the "tail effects" of the "Iggy" tropical cyclone system sweeping towards northwest Australia.

A general round up of Bali's inclement over the past week:
  • A steady barrage of waves of 2.5 meters in height have pounded Bali's popular Kuta beach causing damage to hotel walls and necessitating the beach to be closed to swimmers for several days
  • Local wind storms of strong intensity - known locally as "angin putih beliung" causing damage to at least 53 private homes in the Renon subdistrict of Bali's capital of Denpasar and Sanur. Among the areas worst affected were Jalan Tukad Balian, Gang Buaya, Gang Mandalasari, Gang Tasik Wulan, Jalan Tukad Badung IV, XVII, and XIX. The wind storm struck in the middle of the night at 1:30 a.m. and was preceded by thunder, lightning and heavy rains.
  • The Denpasar government counts 11 trees felled by the winds. The trees were downed on Jalan By Pass Ngurah Rai, Jalan Dan- au Tamblingan, Panjer, Tonja, Jalan Sulatri, Jalan Sedap Malam, Jalan M. Yamin, Jalan Tukad Balian, Jalan Tukad Pakerisan and Jalan Sudirman. 
  • A 50-meter stretch of the seawall along the sea shore at the Hotel Discovery Kartika Plaza was damaged by the large waves allowing water to inundate a part of the hotel's gardens. 
  • A 2-kilometer walkway along popular Kuta beach was partially washed away.
  • Wave action and high seas caused local authorities to close Kuta Beach to swimmers for several days.
  • Strong seas washed over a cemetery (Setra Banjar) in the village of Tibibiu at Kerambitan in the Tabanan regency of Bali on Saturday, January 28, 2012.
  • The Pura Segara sea temple near the Gilimanuk ferry crossing in West Bali was damaged by sea action and heavy winds that washed away the surround wall.
  • Rumor of strong winds hitting the Nusa Dua area of Bali and causing a large number of fatalities widely circulating on the social network were proven unfounded and formally denied by the Disaster Management Agency of Badung Regency.
  • The ferry crossing at Padang Bai between Bali and Lombok was closed for an initial three day period on Thursday, January 26, 2012, when port officials said waves as high as 5 meters in height and winds of 35 kilometers made seas crossings too dangerous to undertake. A backlog of trucks and cars stretched to 5 kilometers from the entrance to Padang Bai as vehicles waited for the authorities to re-open the crucial sea link to the island chain to Bali's east.
  • At least 6 fatalities have been linked the the bad weather in Bali. 2 men were killed in Karangasem, East Bali - one by a falling tree and another another by falling coconuts. Meanwhile, 3 men died in Tabanan West Bali attributed to falling trees. Another man died in Sanur on January 26, 2012, when a tree he was cutting fell on top of him during one of the storms.
  • An elementary school in Karangasem was destroyed when an uprooted tree fell on the school.
  • High seas in closed ports across the Bali's north and flooded seaside rice fields, causing widespread crop damage along Bungkulum beach. The high seas have also inundated homes along the shores at Bungkulum. 39 homes in the village of Dauh Munduk, 31 homes in the village of Badung, 20 home in the village of Kubu Kelod and 12 homes in the village of Sema. In total, some 103 families were forced to evacuate their homes.
  • A ferry on the Padang Bai to Lombok run narrowly averted disaster on Wednesday, January 25, 2012, when high seas caused a dangerous shifting in cargo and vehicles as the Andika Nusantara Ferry approached the Lombok port of Lembar. The ship, under threat of sinking, the 120 passengers were evacuated to another ship the Indra Nusantara.
  • The Bali Life Saving Service (Balawista) and the Kuta Water Police have posted "no-swimming" red flags because flare waves and strong winds. Authorities will monitor the weather conditions on a day to day basis to determine when the swimming ban can be lifted.
  • Surfing operators along Kuta beach report no customers for several days with no visitors prepare to brave the waves.
  • A landslide in the parking area in front of Bali's iconic Pura Taman Ayun in Mengwi on Saturday, January 28, 2012 causes the death of an infant child and injuries to its mother.
  • Floods in the Lembah Sangulan area of Tabanan on Saturday, January 28, 2012, caused by clogged gutters caused 6 families to evacuate their families.
  • Floods in the village of Karobelahan, West Tianyar, in Karangasem washed away electrical polls and destroyed 11 homes.
  • A whirlwind knocked down a large tree on Jalan Sulatri-Penatih in Denpasar on the early hours Sunday, January 29, 2012, knocking out electrical service, disrupting water supplies and causing traffic jams.
  • A large branch of a  Banyan tree located in from to the Pura Bujangga temple broke off closing Jalan Trenggli in Denpasar,
  • On Saturday, January 28, 2012, a tree fell on Jalan Penjaringan Sanur, Gang III, interrupting power service.
  • A branch falling from a Banyan tree cut electrical service to Jalan Batur Sari in Sanur.
  • A whirlwind struck Kubutambahan, Buleleng, north Bali on Sunday, January 29, 2012 damaging 76 private homes and destroying a bridge serving as a main access to the village Bengkala.
  • High winds prevented sever boats from tying up at at the port of Gilimanuk at the ferry crossing to Java, damage to vessels that washed onto the local reef and causing temporary closings of the narrow crossing between Java and Bali.
The after effects of the cyclone Iggy weather system is expected to begin to dissipate by 01 February.
 


 
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Bali Update #580
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Bali Update #578
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Bali Update #577
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Bali Update #576
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Bali Update #575
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Bali Update #574
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Bali Update #573
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Bali Update #572
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Bali Update #571
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Bali Update #570
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Bali Update #569
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Bali Update #568
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Bali Update #567
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Bali Update #566
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Bali Update #565
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Bali Update #564
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Bali Update #563
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Bali Update #562
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Bali Update #561
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Bali Update #560
June 04, 2007

Bali Update #559
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Bali Update #558
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Bali Update #557
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Bali Update #556
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Bali Update #555
April 30, 2007

Bali Update #554
April 23, 2007

Bali Update #553
April 16, 2007

Bali Update #552
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Bali Update #551
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Bali Update #550
March 26, 2007

Bali Update #549
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Bali Update #548
March 12, 2007

Bali Update #547
March 05, 2007

Bali Update #546
February 26, 2007

Bali Update #545
February 19, 2007

Bali Update #544
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Bali Update #543
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Bali Update #542
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Bali Update #541
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Bali Update #540
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Bali Update #539
January 08, 2007

Bali Update #538
January 01, 2007

Bali Update #537
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Bali Update #536
December 18, 2006

Bali Update #535
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Bali Update #534
December 04, 2006

Bali Update #533
November 27, 2006

Bali Update #532
November 20, 2006

Bali Update #531
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Bali Update #530
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Bali Update #529
October 30, 2006

Bali Update #528
October 23, 2006

Bali Update #527
October 16, 2006

Bali Update #526
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Bali Update #525
October 2, 2006

Bali Update #524
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Bali Update #523
September 04, 2006

Bali Update #522
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Bali Update #521
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Bali Update #520
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Bali Update #519
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Bali Update #518
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Bali Update #517
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Bali Update #516
July 31, 2006

Bali Update #515
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Bali Update #514
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Bali Update #513
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Bali Update #512
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Bali Update #511
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Bali Update #510
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Bali Update #509
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Bali Update #508
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Bali Update #507
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Bali Update #506
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Bali Update #505
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Bali Update #504
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Bali Update #503
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Bali Update #502
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Bali Update #501
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