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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 #947 - 27 October 2014

IN THIS UPDATE


Singapore to Bali Air Bargains
Mandala Airline to Connect Bali and Singapore

The recently resurrected low-cost Indonesian carrier Mandala Airlines has announced their intention to commence service between Singapore and Bali (Denpasar) and Singapore and Padang (Sumatra), effective December 1, 2012.

Mandala Airlines, a joint venture with Tiger Airways, is offering a special fare of SID$99 (US$81) one-way all-inclusive between Singapore and Denpasar and SID$79 (US$64) one-way all-inclusive between Singapore and Padang.

The Mandala Airline RI 854 service from Denpasar will depart each day at 17:45 arriving in Singapore at 20:20. The southbound service from Singapore to Denpasar RI 835 leaves at 10:35 each morning landing in Singapore at 13:10.

These special airfares are available for travel between December 1, 2012 and March 31, 2013.

Terms and conditions apply.


Bali Hotels Resolved to Do Whatís Right
Bali Hotels Association: Committed to Protecting Guests and the Local Community

The Bali Hotels Association (BHA) is committed to continually enhancing security, including the ability to overcome threats of terrorism to its 106 member hotels and their guests.

Recently 78 security and training managers from BHA hotels gathered at the Bali Dynasty Hotel for a one-day security workshop. Among the topics covered in the training were counter-terrorism measures, risk management and perimeter-control procedures.

Guest speakers from the British and Australian embassies provided insightful assessments on the current threat environment.

In the course of the training, the BHA also launched the latest edition of it Hotel Security and Safety Self-Assessment Tool.

At the same time, the Bali Security Managers Association launched the Bali Security and Safety Emergency Radio Communications System.

Members of the Bali police were also on hand to discuss new regulations for meetings in Bali.

Protecting Children

Taking full advantage of the gathering, guidelines were  presented on Child Sex Exploitation Detection and Prevention via a joint initiative between the Sacred Childhoods Foundation and BHA to curb the incidents of sexual exploitation of children on the island.

Alexander Kesper, BHA Security and Safety Executive, said: “This workshop underlines our commitment towards the highest standards, not only with regards to the creation of unforgettable and unique holiday experiences for our guests but also security and safety. To safeguard our guests and employees is a top priority and a team effort.”

The Australian and British Embassies, the United Nations Department for Security and Safety, Hawkeye Security, Sacred Childhoods Foundation, the Bali Security Managers Association and the Bali police, supported the workshop.


Roads Pilaf
Plans Underway for Two Elevated Road Projects of the Rice Fields of East and West Bali

While Bali is working "full speed ahead" to complete the construction of an elevated toll way connecting Benoa – Ngurah Rai International Airport – Nusa Dua and on the Simpang Siur underpass, ideas are now being put forward to further alleviate traffic congestion by constructing elevated roadways over rice fields.

The idea of elevated roads over rice fields was first advanced by the head of the agency charged with National Roadway Construction for the province (BPJN), Susalit Alius.

Quoted in Beritabali.com, Susalit said: “The form (of the roads) will resemble the road to the Jakarta Sukarno-Hatta airport (in Jakarta) and be suspended on pillars. On these roads suspended over the rice fields, the function of the land (as agricultural fields) will not be changed. All that will change is an increase in the road network."

Susalit went on to explain that the goal of the proposed suspended highways through traditional agricultural lands is to add much-needed highways in Bali without damaging the environment or destroying the iconic rice fields and terraces, which exemplify the island.

“This plan for suspended highways supports pro-green and green tourism programs. The only metropolitan area in Indonesia with rice fields is Bali. So let's ensure that Bali is always green,” said Susalit.

The man charged with planning the regions' road infrastructure confirmed two roads over the rice fields are now under review and, according to plans, will connect Kuta-Tanah Lot-Soka via an extension of the current Sunset Road with another road connecting Beringkit-Batuan-Purnama.

According to partial plans now in hand, the proposed roads will be 30-meters wide to accommodate four lanes of traffic. Plans also call for the new roads to be constructed at heights lower than surrounding coconut trees to accommodate Balinese cultural sensitivities.

Susalit said the planning phase for the new roadways would consume 3-6 months. The plans also contemplate the provincial Zoning Law of 2009 (RTRWP) and a presidential decree regarding the Sarbagita transportation network. The preliminary plans for the new-elevated highways have already been presented to the Badung House of Representative (DPRD-Badung) and the Badung Administration.

Susalit added: “These elevated highways over rice fields will only be for roads and for no other purpose. Because of this, the elevated highways need to be secured by a provincial law preventing any development in areas adjoining the new highways for the next 25-30 years.”


An Exalted Mountain
Baliís Mount Batur Earns Global Geopark Status from UNESCO

The caldera strewn mountain area at Kintamani and Mount Batur has been officially designated as Indonesia’s first Global Geopark by UNESCO

Quoted in Bisnis.com, Akhyarudin, the director of tourism development and MICE from the Ministry of Tourism and the Creative Economy, said: “The official acknowledgement of the Batur Caldera of Batur at Bangli as the newest member of the UNESCO Global Geopark Network was received on Thursday night, September 20, 2012, Portugal time.”

He went on to say that there are many benefits to be derived by the UNESCO appointment, including cost-free promotion to a worldwide audience. Akhyarudin said the appointment would also attract many foreign investors.

The Mount Batur caldera is located in the village of Kintamani in the regency of Bangli is one of 6 Geoparks applications put forth by the Indonesian government.

The other areas awaiting Geopark confirmation from UNESCO are: Lake Toba, North Sumatra, Merangin in Jambi; Mount Rinjani in Lombok; Raja Ampat in Papua and the Kars Sewa region in Central Java.

In conclusion Akhyarudin said: Mount Batur is ready to become a Geopark. The people are prepared to support this. With the confirmation by UNESCO the news of the beauty of the caldera will now go international.”

[Bali Discovery Tours :Kintamani Volcano and Barong Dance Tour]





Mercure Rising
201-room Mercure Bali Nusa Dua Opens in South Bali

The Mercure Bali Nusa Dua opened on September 23, 2012.

The fourth Mercure hotel to open in Bali, the Nusa Dua property has 201 rooms presented in a contemporary style. Blending traditional Balinese accents with the contemporary style that is a Mercure hallmark, the rooms are equipped with international cable television and free Internet connections.

Located in Nusa Dua within the Bali Tourism Development (BTDC) complex the Mercure Bali Nusa Dua features 201 contemporary rooms including 8 Junior Suites, 1 restaurant, 1 bar, fitness centre, a unique swimming pool divided over two levels and connected by a waterfall and 3 meeting rooms.

Quoted in Kompas.com, Peter Stolk, general manager of the Mercure Bali Nusa Dua said he was very enthused to be able to become a part of the Mercure network of hotels in Bali.


All Ashore!
Cruise Ships Visits to Bali on the Rise

Bali Daily (The Jakarta Post) reports that Bali is targeting 51 cruise ships visits before the end of 2012, a number equal to 24% of the total number of cruise ships visiting Indonesia as a whole.

Quoting a government official: “We expect that the island will be visited by at least by 51 cruise ships this year. The resort island currently has three harbors capable of receiving such visits: Benoa in Denpasar, Tanah Ampo in Karangasem and Celukan Bawang in Buleleng.”

Iwan Sabatini of PT Pelindo III, the port manager for Benoa in South Bali, said: “The country is yet to have, or construct, a harbor specifically designed and designated for cruise liners.”

Continuing, Sabatini added: “There are 20 harbors across the country that are being upgraded and prepared to be Indonesia’s cruise ship destinations,”

The government’s desire to attract cruise passengers to Indonesia is driven by data revealing visiting ship passengers spend up to US$100 per day with crew spending only slightly less, at US$90 per day.


Changes in Nikko Bali Resort & Spa Sales Team
Van Perborgh-Gooch Replaces Joy Cartwright at Nikko Bali Resort and Spa

Peter Maurice van Peborgh-Gooch has joined Nikko Bali Resort and Spa as the Director of Sales and Marketing, replacing Joy Cartwright who is returning to her native Australia to assume a new position for the resort.

Van Peborgh-Gooch will implement a repositioning for the Nikko Bali Resort and Spa within the luxury hotel stratosphere. He will also execute the upcoming launch of the resort’s new luxury villas, multipurpose function center and new wedding gazebo facility.

A sales and marketing professional, Peter and has worked with several luxury properties in Europe, the Middle East and, most recently, in Asia. He has worked with Ritz-Carlton, Savoy Group and InterContinental. He last appointment in Bali was as the director of sales and marketing at the AYANA, Resort and Spa, now part of the Capella Hotel Group.

“A seasoned hotelier with more than 25 years of international experience in both Sales and Marketing and Operations, in resort and city centre locations, in regional and on-property capacities, Peter will be a great asset for us. Having previously worked with a resort in Bali that has undergone a successful change, we believe that he will be able to contribute enormously in our plan to take Nikko Bali Resort and Spa another step up,” dais Jean-Charles Le Coz, general manager, Nikko Bali Resort and Spa.

Joy Cartwright Assigned Downunder


Van Peborgh-Gooch’s replaces Joy Cartwright who is returning to her native Australia to become the resort’s new representative in Australia with the title director of sales for Australia and New Zealand.

Joy Cartwright served as Director of Sales and Marketing for the past year.
 


Ignorance of the Law or a Smoke Screen?
Bali Officials Determine that Most Hotels in Kuta Failing to Enforce New Rules Banning Smoking in Public Areas

A survey conducted on Tuesday, September 25, 2012 at starred hotels in Kuta carried out by provincial enforcement officers (Satpol PP-Bali) and working units of the provincial government (SKPD) revealed that most properties have yet to implement the Smoke-Free-Law of 2011 in their public areas.

Inilah.com reports that the survey team paid calls at starred hotels that included the Hard Rock Hotel, Mercure Kuta, Harris Kuta, Legian Paradiso, Holiday Inn Baruna, Bali Rani, Discovery Kartika Plaza, Kuta Paradiso and Bali Dynasty.

According to the head of the Disease Prevention Service of Bali’s Health Service, Ayu Rai Andayani, the majority of hotels in Kuta have are not following the smoke-free-zone rules under the new law, proven by the large number of ashtrays found in enclosed lobby areas. In addition, the survey team failed to find the required signage forbidding smoking in public areas.

According to inilah.com, the managers of the hotels are sidestepping any responsibility, claiming they did not know that their enclosed lobbies and other areas of their hotels are “no-smoking-zones.”

The lack of signage and the ready accessibility of ashtrays feed a situation in which hotels guests smoking in lobbies remains a common sight. Moreover, those smoking in areas where smoking is now forbidden include both domestic and foreign tourist, as well as tourist guides.

Ayu responds insisting that most hotels have been informed of the non-smoking rules on several occasions. She further contends that hotels are still refusing to post no-smoking signs in their hotels, claiming in their defense that there’s no space for such signage or that the required signs would be aesthetically displeasing.

Currently most hotels still supply ashtrays in their lobbies, with some hotels providing specific smoking areas in the lobby – a situation specifically not allowed under the no-smoking legislation.

The enforcement team did not take direct action against the subject hotel’s management or those caught smoking in public areas. “All we did was seize the ashtrays in the lobbies as proof of their violations. We have tried to educate the management and the hotels’ employees on the no-smoking regulations in order that they can enforce the rules on their own in the future,” said Ayu.

The enforcement team also reportedly reprimanded hotel guests found to be smoking, advising them that they were breaking the law.


A Warning on Deaf Ears
The Australian Declares Paradise Lost in Bali Under Forklifts and Fallacies

A stinging rebuke highlighting the declining appeal of Bali as a tourism destination has been delivered by Deborah Cassrels, writing for The Australian in her article: [Paradise Lost As Once Beautiful Bali Buckles Under Forklifts And Fallacies].

Bali Must Clean Up its Act

The scolding leveled by Cassrels was echoed by Indonesia’s Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Mari Elka Pangestu who recently warned government officials and hoteliers that the APEC Economic Summit scheduled for late 2013 represents a double-edged sword, capable of both promoting Bali to the world or spotlighting a dismal state of an island failing to manage both its present and its future.

Minister Pangestu’s message was simple: Bali must clean up its image.
As suggested  in The Australian article, the APEC Summit’s declared theme of “Resilient Asia, Engine of Global Growth” will he surrounded by the irony by endeavoring to “showcase an island where environmental and pollution woes have spun out of control.”

Accordingly, Pangestu has sounding a warning: "As soon as you have a meeting of international leaders you're going to have a lot of media ... and they will look for stories. They will go all over the island."

The APEC meeting, attended by more than 20 world leaders, will be headquartered in southern Bali – an area plagued by traffic congestion, water shortages, pollution and sewage disposal shortcomings.

The article goes on to explore the recent and very rapid decline in Bali’s environment, fed less by a lack of rules than a lack of discernable law enforcement. Efforts by Bali’s governor, Made Mangku Pastika, have tried to salvage the island via a tough new zoning law and a moratorium on new hotel development. These measure, although enjoying wide public support, have been ignored and resisted by Badung’s regent and vice-regent who steadfastly turn a deaf ear to dire warnings of Bali’s eventual collapse as a world tourism destination, claiming, in their defense, that new project are needed to increase the Regency's tax base.

Meanwhile, experts estimate that taxes paid by hotels and restaurants are under-collected by 135% by Badung regency officials who resist tooth and nail all efforts to modernize an antiquated and notoriously corrupt tax collection system.

Defensive reactions trying to brand Cassrels’ article as an unprincipled "external" attack on Bali won’t stand the test. Included in The Australian’s report are local warnings of impending disaster from the head of the Bali Tourism Board, a leading academic from Bali’s Udayana University, a Balinese environmentalist and an expatriate community worker in South Bali.

Hotel Mulia Bali

The article also reviews in some detail the 700-room Mulia Bali Hotel Project, mired in accusations linked to a national banking scandal. Also discussed in the article are allegation that the hotel project has transgressed rules stipulating a set back distance from a sacred local temple, Pura Geger, and is violating the minimum set back rule of 100-meters from the high-water mark. (See photo)

O’Leary, the Bali-based founder of an education and environmental ROLE Foundation, minced no words when quoted in The Australian, saying: "The Mulia is part of the rape of the island. It's way over the top," he says. "It's one of the biggest environmental nightmares for Nusa Dua. I think in two years the bubble is going to burst in Bali. Virtually every day you paddle through sewage. Every night when the swell's down the locals are cyanide fishing. There used to be 500 families involved in seaweed farming in front of the Mulia and they've been paid a pittance to stop doing it. Jobs have been replaced in the hotel industry, but most of them will come from Java and other parts of Bali."

As reported by Balidiscovery.com [See: Keeping it Strictly Mulia]  the general affairs manager of the Hotel Mulia Bali, Gusti Ngurah Rahardja, has proclaimed that the construction of the hotel is in strict accordance with all existing rules and regulations.

Meanwhile, dire warnings of bleak times to come are also offered by the director of the Bali environmental group Balifokus, Bayu Susilo, who says: "I am worried we will be visitors in our home. My grandchildren will find it difficult to get land for housing or a job. Each year new development consumes 1400 hectares of rice paddies. The tourism concept that has been implemented is selling Balinese culture rooted with Hinduism - its unique identity and landscape. If Bali is not managed well ... it will collapse."


Power Play
Higher Electrical Rates Threaten Local Hotels with Bankruptcy

Bisnis Bali reports that a planned 15% hike in electrical power rates will increase overall energy costs by up to 10%. For many companies in the tourism sector, expenditures for energy represent 5% of gross revenues.

“The potential 15% increase in the basic electrical tariff (KDL) will increase the energy costs for hotels by up to 6%,” warned the vice-chairman of the Indonesian Association of Tourism (GIPI), Bagus Sudibya. At the same time, Sudibya warned that a 5% energy cost against total gross revenues represents the upper limit sustainable by local hotels.

Continuing, Sudibya said: “If (energy costs) are 6% of gross revenues, that is equal to an increase of 1% from total revenues. At one time, the cost of energy was 3% of gross revenues. Clearly, the (higher cost) will reduce the profit margins of hotels which are already under pressure.”

Citing an example, he said that if a hotel receives Rp. 2 billion (US$210,000) in sales revenues the cost of electricity will be Rp. 100 million (US$10,525). This, if the basic cost of electricity increases by 15% then the cost of electrical power increases to Rp. 120 million (US$12,630).

Sudibya said the government must begin to take note of supply and demand issues in approving new accommodation permits. “it’s just not healthy to have too many rooms,” Sudibya also said rising energy costs are especially problematic in an uncontrolled competitive situation where rates are under pressure.”

Issuing a final warning, Sudibya said: “Don't allow supply (of rooms) to be out of control while electrical costs are on the increase. Many hotels owned by local businesspeople will go bankrupt.”
 


Removing the Toll Booth at Indonesian Gateways
Indonesian Tourism Minister Urges Abolishment of US$25 Visa-on-Arrival Fee

Bisnis.com reports that Indonesia’s Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Mari Elka Pangestu, has expressed her concern that the permanent imposition of the US$25 visa-on-arrival fee threatens the future development of tourism to Indonesia.

Pangestu said the government has received many complaints from Japanese travel operator who are members of the Japan Association of Travel Agents (JATA) regarding the US$25 charged to arriving tourists in exchange for a 30-day visa.

She said that Japanese travel professionals in urging Indonesia to end its vis fee point to other destinations, such as Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines who do not charge a visa fee and make obtaining a visa hassle free.

“I will recommend to the Minister of Finance that the imposition of the visa fee become an agenda item in future discussions. Hopefully, we can find the best solution,” said Pangestu while attending the Indonesian stand at the JATA Tourism Forum and Travel Showcase in Japan, September 20-23, 2012.

The Japan travel fair was attended by nationals from 156 countries. Also attending the were 20 Bali tourism professionals who were members of Rasa Sayang – a consortium of travel agents focused on the Japanese market.

Nia Niscaya, the director of marketing for overseas markets from the Ministry said the cost of obtaining the visa applies to most foreign tourist coming to Indonesia. She insisted abolishing the visa fee would be a relatively easy matter for the related ministries accomplish.

“If the fee is abolished it would have a positive effect on increasing tourist visitors that in turn would increase revenues in all supporting sectors, such as hotels, resorts and shopping for handicrafts,” Nia explained.

Minister Pangestu also shared that the chairperson of JATA, Jungko Kikuma many had also expressed concerns over safety and security in Indonesia, citing several incidents that have affected public order and security.

The Indonesian Tourism Minister also reports that JATA members had urged her to lobby Japan Airlines to reopen flights between Tokyo and Denpasar.
 


A Reptilian Repast
Small Art Shop Near Simpang Siur Offers Culinary Specialties Comprised of Poisonous Snakes, Crocodiles, Lizards and Bats

Those stuck in the perpetual traffic jam at the Simpang Siur intersection in Bali at the Dewa Ruci underpass project may have seen an “Art Shop” on the south side of the Jalan Bypass, roughly opposite the BIMC Hospital.

The Art Shop is a small ruko shop offering a truly unique range of products. Step inside the store and be greeted by row after row of special cages housing hundreds of live snakes, largely poisonous, that once selected will be fried, roasted or turned into soup at the customer's pleasure.

Quoted by Beritabali.com, Anita Tambunan who works as an attendant in the shop said: “The most popular item ordered by foreign visitors is fried python, the meat of which is thick and tasty. The taste is not much different from chicken meat. Meanwhile, local tourists prefer the special medicinal powers of this snake.”

The spices used in frying a python are very similar to those used in fried chicken. The basic ingredient call for garlic, shallots, sweet soy sauce and ginger.

Those preferring their snake served as sate marinate the meat in sesame oil, sweet soy sauce and then cooked over coals.

Snake soup uses a wide range of herbs and spices, depending on the specific type of soup ordered.

Other exotic meats served from the shop include monitor lizards, monkeys, bats and crocodiles. Presentation is also important,  each serving is decorated by tomatoes or other decorative vegetables. The average prices ranges from US$10 for Cobra Soup to US$30 for Crocodile Sate. The above prices do not include 10% tax and service.

The shop also stocks a range of traditional medicines available for sale to the public.

While a chef is in charge of the kitchen, the majority of the staff are women accustomed to handling poisonous snakes, bats and other exotic species in the course of their day’s work.

In slaughtering the reptiles and animals, special care is taken to reserve the fresh blood, a substance much sought by customers for its perceived medicinal and healing powers.

Anita said handling snakes is second nature and all a matter of knowing how to do one’s job in what would be a highly dangerous job for someone unfamiliar with the reptiles.

The Art Shop is open daily from 9:00 am until 10:00 pm.
 


AirAsia Drops Bali to Phuket Service
AirAsia Abruptly Ends Phuket to Bali Service in Favor of More Lucrative Chinese Routes

AirAsia have announced their intention to axe its Phuket to Bali service.

According to the Phuket Gazette, the announcement has resulted in a rash of angry calls to AirAsia’s call center from stranded passengers.

The move to cancel the route is reportedly linked to a decision by AirAsia to deploy aircraft to more profitable routes to China.

The last flight between Bali and Phuket operated on September 30, 2012.

AirAsia is also cancelling lights from Bangkok to Colombo, Sri Lanka, effective October 10, 2012.
 


A Walk in the Clouds
52-year-old Man Tries to Open Door on Hong Kong Airline Flight from Bali to Hong Kong

AFP reports that a Chinese passenger on board a Hong Kong Airlines flight from Bali to Hong Kong on Friday, September 28, 2012, was restrained when, halfway through the flight tried to open the airplane’s door.

The 52-year-old man, identified only as Peng, reportedly thought he was opening a bathroom door when he started pulling on the emergency door handle.

Fortunately, the door failed to open as crew members rushed and dragged Peng away from the door, restraining him for the duration of the flight.

Interviewed by the police in Hong Kong, Peng said that he was on his first plane journey and has assumed the door led to a bathroom.

The man was issued a warning letter, but was not arrested.



Past Perfect, Future Infinite
Popular Bali Expatriate Andrew Charles has Died

Andrew Charles, a resident of Indonesia since 1990, died on Thursday, September 20, 2012 at his home in Canggu, Bali.

Andrew moved to Bali in the mid-1990s where he worked as an English teacher, professional editor, and proofreader and also wrote for a number of publications.

Before moving to Asia, Andrew had a long career as a government servant in the U.K., taking early retirement to pursue his personal dream of living in the East.

Charles held professional qualifications in English language education teaching drama, property management and psychotherapy.

Charles was active in the local community and dedicated to improving the lot of the people of Bali. He was an active member of Skal and served as president of the Rotary Club of Bali Canggu.

Andrew Charles’ funeral was held on Tuesday, September 25, 2012 in Palembang, Sumatra.


Staging a Comeback of Sorts
Bali by the Numbers: August Arrivals Regain Some Loss Ground in Bali Arrivals



The Road to Success
Baliís Elevated Toll Road Cited as a Model of Development

The Minister for State-Owned Enterprises, Dahlan Iskan, is praising the Benoa-Ngurah Rai Airport – Nusa Dua Toll Way (JDP) now under construction as an example on how highways projects should be constructed throughout Indonesia

As reported by Beritabali.com, Iskan is very impressed with the speed at which the new highway in Bali is being built that will see a 10-kilometer long highway completed in less than 12 months.

Speaking at the Campus of Bali’s Udayana University on Saturday, January 29, 2012, Iskan complained that the construction of toll roads in Indonesia tend to be drawn out affairs, often requiring years to complete. The new Bali highway, however, will be completed ahead of schedule.

“I am very please because the this project (Bali Toll Way) is on target and may even be completed early with construction underway at several locations simultaneously. The toll way should be ready for use in July of next year,” boasted the Minister.

Dahlan Iskan said the success story of the construction of the Benoa to Nusa Dua toll way would be made into a book to be launched at the official inauguration of the new toll road next June. He said he hoped the proposed book would serve as an inspiration and benchmark for the construction of future toll roads across Indonesia.


Bali Sleeps with the Best
Bali Hyatt in Sanur Donates Bedding and Towels to the People of East Bali

The Bali Hyatt on Sanur Beach recently donated a large quantity of mattresses, towels and pillows to the people of Munti Gunung Village, Karangasem, East Bali.

Part of a worldwide Hyatt Thrive program, the goods were donated to Barrie Smith, Director of Yayasan Peduli Munti Gunung.

The Foundation headed by Smith works to empower the disadvantaged people of the Munti Gunung region through the provision of appropriate health, welfare and educational support.

Hyatt Thrive is a program of community engagement and environmental stewardship embraced by Hyatt International’s team members worldwide

[Bali Hyatt on Sanur]


Added Caution Advised
Australians Continue to Visit Bali Despite Words of Caution from Their Government

On September 20, 2012, the Australian Government modified its travel advisory for Indonesia, maintaining its warning that its national “exercise a high degree of caution.”

The reissuance of the advisory contained new information related to civil unrest and political tension, warning that further protests may be possible in Jakarta. [See: Australian Travel Advisory]  

According to Radar Bali, Australian travelers continue to travel to Bali with little attention paid to travel advisories issued by their government.

Balidiscovery.com reports that there were 65,002 Australians coming to Bali in August 2012, a decline of 5.6% when compared to August 2011.

Thousands of Australians, including the Prime Minister and other ranking government officials, are expected to be in Bali to attend a Commemoration Ceremony of the 2002 bombing to be held at the Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park on October 12, 2012.

Related Article

[Safeguarding Memories]

[Safeguarding the Memory]


Rest and Recuperation
Baliís Governor Hospitalized for 3-Days Due to Severe Cold

After a three-night stay in the International Wing of Denpasar’s Sanglah General Hospital, Bali governor Made Mangku Pastika was permitted to return home on Saturday, September 29, 2012.

According to Radar Bali, Pastika left the hospital at 11:00 am accompanied by a number of provincial authorities, including the director the Hospital and the chief of the Bali Health Service.

A doctor at the hospital confirmed that the governor, suffering from a cold, was well enough to return home.

Pastika was admitted to the hospital on Wednesday, September 26, 2012 at 11:00 pm.

Recovering from cardiac bypass surgery, the governor was suffering from a severe cold with doctors recommending the complete rest  that could only be guaranteed by a period of hospitalization.

The governor was warded in Jepung Room #214 where his health quickly returned allowing his release after 3 days.

The doctors who released the governor from the hospital have recommended that Pastika keep his workload to a minimum until his health and stamina recuperate completely.


Seoul Cooking in Bali
A Taste of Korea: Banyan Tree Ungasan, Bambu Restaurant, October 19-26, 2012

Banyan Tree Ungasan, Bali presents a taste of Korea October 19-26, 2012 at Bambu Restaurant featuring a visiting VIP Korean guest chef direct from Banyan Tree Club & Spa Seoul.

Chef Myung Chul Ham’s culinary career includes assignments at a number of leading luxury hotels as well as a stint at the famed “Cheong Wa Dae” or “Blue House” - the official residence of the South Korea’s head of state where he served as personal chef for two Korean Presidents.

Praised and respected for his global approach to Korean cuisine, Chef Ham has repeatedly been entrusted to represent the rich gastronomic tradition of his country through inspired menus prepared for dignitaries during state banquets.

During his one-week visit to Bali, Chef Ham will present signature dishes from the Club Member’s Restaurant in Seoul including: Ureok Maeuntang - spicy rockfish stew, Jeonbokcho - abalone in soy sauce, Daksal-Gyeojachae - marinated and shredded chicken, Galbi-Gui-Yangnyeom - marinated and grilled beef short ribs, Jeyook Bokkum - sautéed pork belly and Nakji-Bokkeum - stir-fried baby octopus with vegetables.

Following the visit of Chef Ham, Bambu Restaurant will incorporate selected signature dishes as a part of their permanent menu.

Part of an ongoing program of culinary exchange among Banyan Tree properties, chefs across 30 different Banyan Tree Hotel & Resorts are invited to spend time at other Banyan Tree Hotels and Resort’s.

The Bambu Restaurant at Banyan Tree Ungasan features Indonesian specialties, international and Asian favorites with both à la carte, live cooking stations and buffet presented in a garden setting.

[Banyan Tree Ungasan Bali]


A Tree Grows in Benoa
Toll Builders Pledge a Total Rehabilitation of Mangrove Forest Affected by Construction Project

The contractors building the toll road connecting Benoa – Ngurah Rai Airport – Nusa Dua (JDP) have publicly affirmed that they will repair any damage caused to the mangrove forest by the project.

The contractors making the pledge are PT Wijaya Karya, PT Adhi Karya and PT Hutama Karya.

Beritabali.com reports the project chief of Hutama Karya, Nyoman Sujaya, confirmed the rehabilitation of the mangrove forest will be undertaken in phases. Moreover, the rehabilitation will not be based merely on the planting of new trees but at revitalizing the entire mangrove forest affected by the JDP construction.

“Our study shows that we have sacrificed 66,000 trees in building the JDP. We will be replacing those trees at a ration of 2:1 – all to be planted before the new toll road begins operating. Our target is life, not just planting,” explained Sujaya on September 27, 2012.

Sujaya added that the limestone used to build the temporary access roads needed to erect the supporting pillars of the elevated highway will be removed by the May 2013.

Sujaya admitted that the excavation using limestone has caused pollution of the surrounding water, but insists the momentary disturbance of the water quality has had minimal effect on the ecosystem. The cloudiness of the water, he says, is only temporary and caused by the excavation for the temporary roads.

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[Nature’s Call]

[Bali’s Bitter Medicine]

[Temporary Digs]

[A Suspended Highway]

[Stuck at the Toll Booth]


Last Tango in Bali
Tango in Paradise - Tango Dancing Festival in Bali November 28 Ė December 4, 2012

A Tango dance festival “Tango in Paradise” will be held in Bali from Friday, November 28, 2012 until Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Tango aficionados from around the world are expected to gather in Bali for the international dance event.

The chairman of the local organizing committee, Ratih Soe, told the press on September 27, 2013: “The desire of tango dancers, mainly in Bali, to deepen their knowledge of this form of dance has grown over time giving birth in the process to the idea for ‘Tango in Paradise.’”

Tango in Paradise has invited three of the acknowledge celebrated couples of tango to Bali: Jorge Torres and Maria Blanco; Sabrina and Ruben Veliz and Luis Castro and Claudia Mendoza. Asia’s leading proponents of the tango, Gustava Lin and Catarina Chung will also be dancing in Bali.

The Tango in Paradise event will be held in two hotels in Legian and Ubud and include a number of seminars and demonstrations of the art of romantic tango dancing.

The two hotels hosting the event are The Kumala Pantai in Legian and The Ayung Resort in Payangan, Ubud.


R.O.L.E. Call
Join the ROLE Model Dinner at AYANA Resort on Saturday, October 6, 2012 and Help the Ladies of South Bali Break the Cycle of Poverty

Twelve underprivileged Indonesian woman are nearing the end of an extended period of on-the-job-training at AYANA Resort and Spa Bali as part of the 2nd Annual ‘ROLE MODELS’ program, in partnership with R.O.L.E Foundation.

The women have trained as either Food & Beverage servers, Cooks or Spa Therapists to help them prepare for well-paid jobs in the community.

Their training officially draws to a close on Saturday, October 6, 2012, at a joyful four-course degustation dinner at the Resort’s DAVA Restaurant. where guests will savor a menu prepared by Dava Chef Jusman So in cooperation with R.O.L.E. trainees.

In addition to this charity dinner, Thermes Marins Spa will offer a ‘ROLE Models Upgrade’ throughout the month of October. All spa guests will be invited to add a 20-minute massage from a trainee in addition to their spa treatment for a donation of Rp. 100,000.

All proceeds of the ROLE Models dinner and spa program will go to R.O.L.E Foundation to support vocational training programs at the Foundation’s Nusa Dua campus.

Fine wines donated for the evening will be sold at the very special price of Rp. 400,000 (US$42) per bottle with wine sales proceeds going to R.O.L.E.'s work of empowering women in South Bali.

The cost of the 4-course dinner is Rp.750,000 net per person (US$81) and will feature a silent suction for accommodation vouchers in Bali And Singapore, dining vouchers, photography and artwork

ROLE Models Charity Dinner Menu

Kingfish Ceviche
Kingfish ceviche with coconut and lime, mango pudding and lemongrass foam

Red Snapper
Red snapper with ginger flower and chili relish, urap and brown rice cannelloni with spiced tomato coulis

Veal
Confit of veal marinated with Balinese spices, sweet potato fritter and turmeric - orange glaze

Pandan
Pandan flan with crystallized jackfruit, candied rambutan and kaffir lime sorbet

Reservations Required

For more information or reservations telephone ++62-(0)361-702222 or [Email

[Models of Future Success]


Staying Connected in Bali
BIZNET: As Leading World Tourism Destination Bali Needs World Quality Internet and Multimedia Telecommunications Support

In order to meet the pressing needs of development and maintain its place as a leading world tourism destination, Bali needs an island-wide fiber optic telecommunication system.

According to the President Director of BIZNET Networks, Adi Kusma, “As a popular international tourism destination visited by international visitors, Bali clearly has a need for quality Internet network, data center, cloud computing and pay TV.”

Kusma’s comments were shared with Seputarbali.com in Ubud, Central Bali on Sunday, September 30, 2012.

The head of Indonesia’s leading provider of fixed-line and multimedia telecommunication in Indonesia, Kusma said BIZNET continually strives to improve its service to the Indonesian public through the expansion of its national fiber optic network, including Bali.

BIZNET opened is branch office in Ubud on May 26, 2012. By establishing an office in the cultural and tourism center of Bali, BIZNET is committed to extend its range of services provided to South Bali from its main Bali office located on Jalan Teuku Umar in the capital of Denpasar. Adding, “We intend to provide our customers with fast and reliable Internet service.”

The Public Relations manager of BIZNET Network in Bali, Frez Cika, told of how since its establishment in 2000, BIZNET had assumed the leading role in Indonesia as the provider of fixed line telecommunications and multimedia services in Indonesia. BIZNET has established offices across including throughout the Jakarta Metropolitan area Surabaya, Malang, Bandung, Bogor, Yogyakarta, Semarang, Denpasar and Ubud.

Cika added, “We operate the newest fiber optic network and largest data center in Indonesia.”


To Russia with Love
Garuda Eyeing Scheduled Services Indonesia to Russia

Aviationweek.com reports that among the ambitious expansion plans by the Indonesian national carrier Garuda is the launching of new services to Russia.

Garuda has ten Boeing 777-300ERs on order scheduled to begin arriving in mid-2013.

Garuda has said the new aircraft will be used to fly between Indonesia and Tokyo and to the Middle East. Middle East flights by Garuda Indonesia are presently served by two Boeing 747-400s that will eventually be phased out of the airline’s fleet.

Quoting a spokesman from the airline, “We will go to Tokyo and the Middle East first with the 777s, but maybe later on, when more 777s are delivered to Garuda, we will launch services to cities in Russia, such as Moscow.”

Other destinations that Garuda wishes to serve with the Boeing 777-300ERs are Amsterdam, other European capitals and the U.S.A..


 
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