BALI UPDATE #378 - 08
Bali Hotels Invest
in the Future
Round Up of Upgrades
and Improvements of Bali Hotels Demonstrate Faith
in Island's Future.
The full year of depressed visitor numbers since
the tragic bombing of October 12, 2002, have been
used by Bali's Hoteliers to upgrade and improve
Casa Grande Bali - the association
of 53 star-rated hotels in Bali representing some
12,000 hotel rooms and employing 18,000 people
recently conducted a survey of its members to
list improvements carried out over the past year:
The Bale added a full-service
Sanctuary Spa with a "Masters in Residence"
program offering traditional healing seminars
and therapy. The new Spa Café serves healthy fare
with plans for an open-air bar to be added in
March 2004 at the Faces Restaurant on the
Resort's pool level.
Bali International Hotel spent
US$ 3 million to convert the Ayodya Club
into the Ayodya Palace, a 75 room "hotel
within a hotel", with six room categories and
an exclusive spa. The Octopus Pub has be
re-launched with a new menu, antipasto bar, children's
entertainment area and live entertainment.
Conrad Bali Resort & Spa is
scheduled to open 313 rooms and suites and 20
private villas with pools on 15 acres in Tanjung
Benoa, early in 2004. Facilities include three
dining outlets; an extensive spa and fitness club;
tennis; lagoon pools; water sports, kids' club,
broadband internet access; club rooms and lounge
and a 531 square meter ballroom.
Discovery Kartika Plaza Hotel
added six new two-bedroom boutique villas with
private pools, the only beachfront villas in South
Kuta. The new @ Break Business Center offers
broadband Internet; online conference management
systems for delegate registration; instant database
updates for conference organizers; Wi-Fi conference
communications; personal office; and conference
Grand Hyatt Bali has refurbished
all of the Resort's swimming pools: the 120 meter
Lagoon Pool, 85 meter River Pool,
and Grand Club Private Club Pool adding
waterbeds, plunge pools, Jacuzzis and up scaled
Hard Rock Hotel has added another
meeting room to its portfolio. The Fillmore
Room was inaugurated as the Australian Government's
media center during last October's commemoration
Melia Bali Villas & Resort
recently completed renovations to its Superior
Rooms and Junior Suites. Executive Suite and Garden
Villa renovations will be completed in March 2004,
with a new Family Room Category added.
Nikko Bali Resort & Spa has
added "Canopy Deluxe Beach Front" as a
honeymoon room category featuring romantic canopy
beds, wide balconies, private sun bathing and
private in-room dining overlooking the Indian
Ocean. Two new luxury spa villas bring the total
villa count to 8 and provide spa treatment in
the Tranquility Center with five spa rooms,
beauty salon, fitness center, sauna, steam rooms
Hotel Padma Bali recently completed
a two-year renovation program to guest rooms while
introducing the Bella Rosa Italian Restaurant.
A Garden Club Lounge and Executive Club
Lounge has been added for guests staying in
Garden Deluxe and Chalet Suite room
The Patra Bali Resort and Villas,
the former LTI Patra Jasa, has been completely
refurbished and re-launched under a new brand.
Every room and public space has undergone a total
reworking certain to secure its position as a
5 star luxury resort.
Raddin Sanur Bali is closing
to refurbish all of its 184 rooms. All pools will
become infinity edged, with the pool bar and restaurant
scheduled to be upgraded. The 500-seat ballroom
will be retrofitted with soundproofing and audiovisual
systems, with two breakout rooms added. When the
hotel re-opens in July 2004 it will also have
a new "DeLounge" for early check-outs with
late flights. The lounge is equipped with showers,
lockers, lounges, audio-visual, games and Internet
access. Managed by Accor Hotels,
the resort will reopen in July under either a
Mercure or Novotel
The Ritz-Carlton, Bali Resort & Spa
opened a cliff-side, glass and water-themed Wedding
Pavilion, overlooking the ocean. The 75 square
meter air-conditioned interior seats 40 with an
antechamber for functions or private dining and
a pre-wedding villa. The resort has added Wi-Fi
access in all public areas and plans additional
private villa accommodations to be opened by mid-2004.
Hotel Santika Beach Bali completes
its renovation program in June 2004, repositioning
the property as a semi-boutique property. The
lobby and restaurant will be redesigned; guest
rooms modernized with minimalist design values,
accented with local artifacts and textiles.
Hotel Sanur Beach has renovated
the lobby and reception, adding dedicated service
counters. The Wantilan Meeting Hall is
now fully air-conditioned, increasing seating
capacity to 1,000.
Sanur Paradise Plaza Hotel and Sanur
Paradise Plaza Suites, the former Radisson
Bali Hotel and Radisson Bali Suites, have
re-branded under Prime Plaza Hotels &
Resorts management. All rooms have been
upgraded with electronic locking systems. The
ballroom has added Sanur's first portable projection
screen and multi system video LCD projectors.
The Westin Resort, Nusa Dua
reflagged in December 2003 the former Sheraton
Nusa Indah Resort is undergoing a US$ 4.5
million refurbishment, adding Heavenly Beds,
Westin Service Express, Westin's Kids Club
and full room refitting with high-speed Internet
access in all guest rooms and Wi-Fi in all public
Striving to Remain Asia's Favorite Destination
Bali has been named "Asia's Favorite Holiday
Spot" for three consecutive years by the readers
of Time Magazine. Bali hotels
continue to invest heavily in upgrades and refurbishments
in order to retain this accolade in years to come.
Tourism Arrivals Falling Short of Targets
Increasingly Apparent that Final Tally for 2003 Will Miss Official Goal of 5.2 Million Arrivals.
Total tourism arrivals via all of Indonesia's thirteen international gateways for the first ten months of 2003 reached only 3.02 million, a drop of 15.4 percent when compared to the same period just one year earlier.
With only two months left in the year, it is increasingly apparent that tourism will be hard pressed to achieve the 5.2 million tourists targeted by the Nation's tourism authorities for the entire year. Based on past performance, totals for 2003 are now likely to fall somewhat short of the 4 million mark, a more than 20% gap below the targeted arrivals for the year.
Musical Evening Extraordinaire
Jaya Suprana Mesmerizes Bali with His Homecoming Concert at Sanur Paradise Plaza.
Jaya Suprana is a hard man to label. He is a successful businessman in Indonesia's traditional Jamu medicine industry. He is a social activist known for his commitment to community projects. A well-known raconteur and host on his own national TV talk show, he is also a gifted composer and pianist, whose compositions form part of the national music curriculum. He also owns a zany museum recording Indonesian records for achievements, both heroic and off-beat.
A man of tremendous gifts and personal charm, his stellar performance in a solo piano recital on Saturday evening, December 6, left an audience of over 400 at the Sanur Paradise Plaza Hotel
spellbound and demanding encores.
In a program comprised of his own compositions, western evergreens, and traditional Indonesian songs, Mr. Suprana closed the evening's program with a memorable multi-media presentation in which he accompanied President Megawati and a host of other Indonesians notables as they sang the touching "Indonesia Pusaka"
Born in Bali in 1949, the Saturday evening concert represented a musical home-coming for Suprana who has performed Indonesian music in solo recitals around the world. Many of his compositions explore the pentatonic scales of Balinese and Javanese Gamelans with haunting musical effect.
Jaya Suprana's appearance in Bali was donated without charge to assist the Bali International Women Association (BIWA)
in their fund-raising activities to curb drop-out rates at local schools which have reached levels as high as 60% following the terror attacks of October 2002.
Professional Event Management for the Jaya Suprana "Indonesia Pusaka Concert"
was provided by Bali Discovery Tours
Gourmet Pizza Comes to Bali
Living Room Restaurant Delivers Bali's Best Pizzas.
The Living Room one of Bali's most up-market dining spots in Kerobokan/Seminyak has opened a Pizza Room featuring what they boast are Bali's best pizzas served from the island's most beautiful oven.
The Pizza Room has a high vaulted-ceiling towering over their centerpiece wood-fired oven. Wrought iron chandeliers and a dramatic white stone chimney serve to enshrine the Barong-fronted oven in which only coffee-wood is used to guarantee a light, crispy crust.
A secret dough recipe is complemented with an exotic choice of toppings including chicken Tandoori, smoked salmon with pesto, Peking Duck, and Foie Gras with grilled mango balsamic vinegar.
Open from 12 noon until 11 p.m. for office and home delivery at no additional charge in the Kerobokan and Seminyak area, The Pizza Room is also open for lunch from 12 noon until 4 p.m. daily.
For more information, call The Living Room at 0361 735735.
Bumbu Bali Turns Six
Popular Balinese Restaurant and Cooking School Celebrates a Birthday.
Bumbu Bali - the award-winning Balinese restaurant located on South Bali's Tanjung Benoa Peninsula, is turning 6 and marking their birthday with the launch of a new menu and the imminent publication of another new cookbook celebrating Balinese cuisine.
Owned and operated by Mr. Heinz von Holzen and his Balinese wife, Puji, Bumbu Bali has the distinction of being named Bali's best restaurant by the Island's Governor. Visitors to Bumbu Bali are immediate ushered through a "Paon Bali" - the Balinese kitchen which dominates the entrance to the popular dining spot. Also not to be missed, the restaurant's turtle egg hatchery where fertile eggs purchased at local markets are cared for so young hatchlings can eventually be returned to swim free in Bali's seas.
Despite facing a tough year following the tragic Bali bombing of October 2002, Bumbu Bali has managed to renovate the entire restaurant and expand its seating capabilities.
Work is also underway putting the finishing touches on Heinz's latest cookery book - "Secrets of Balinese Cuisine." Featuring Heinz's recipes and photographs, the newest cook book is expected to be out by mid 2004 and will feature Balinese food anecdotes by well-known writer and cultural authority Fred Eisman, Jr.
As part of the birthday celebration Bumbu Bali launched a new menu on December 8, 2003, including old stand-by favorites such as Sate Lilit, Pork in Sweet Soya Sauce, Sambal Prawns, and the very popular Roast Chicken in Banana Leaf. New items on offer with the new menu are Srombotan, Jejeruk, Pesan Wong, Jukut Kakul and Pecel.
Cooking Classes Continue
Bumbu Bali's regular program of popular cooking classes continue. Each session begins with a dawn visit to local markets followed by breakfast at the restaurant and a full morning of cooking lessons ending with a delicious lunch prepared over the course of the morning.
'Kata-Kata' at Maya Ubud
Painting by Wayan Sila and Poems by Yoko Miyazaki on Exhibition December 15, 2003 January 15, 2004.
Son of the well-known Balinese painter I Wayan Barwa, Wayan Sila has developed a painting style based on the representation of owls, light and the forest presented in combination with poetry and verse penned by Yoko Miyazaki.
Together Yoko and Wayan Sila have successfully exhibited their work throughout Japan, Spain and other overseas venues.
In an exhibition entitled "Kata Kata" or "Words', the paintings of Wayan Sila and the poetry of Yoko Miyazaki will be on exhibit at Bali's Maya Ubud Resort and Spa December 15, 2003 until January 15, 2004.
Ian Norris Leaves GOH
Garuda's Oz Wholesale Travel Team Undergoing a Major Revamp.
After more than 5 years as the General Manager of Garuda Orient Holidays' (GOH) Australian operations out of Sydney, Mr. Ian Norris has announced his resignation to pursue other opportunities.
In bidding farewell to Australia's largest outbound wholesale travel operation, Mr. Norris reaffirmed his total confidence in the future of Bali as a travel destination while offering his thanks to his dedicated team at GOH.
Iswandi Said Will Replace Norris
Stepping into the top role at GOH in Australia is Mr. Iswandi Said, who will move from his current post at Western Australian Manager for Garuda Indonesia based in Perth. Mr. Said has been based in Australia since 1998 and has more than two decades of experience with the Indonesian national carrier.
Mr. Said will be leading a restructured GOH team in Sydney including Mr. Michael Wood as Marketing Manager; Mr. Nick Deacock as Product Manager; and Ms. Karen Burai as Operations Manager.
Garuda Adds Bali Flights for Xmas and New Years
Extra Flights Announced to Ease Anticipated Holiday Rush.
Garuda Indonesia has announced additional flight services between Jakarta and Bali to ease the traditional glut of passengers over the Christmas and New Years period for 2003 - 2004.
Jakarta - Denpasar flights normally operate 11 times each day. During the holiday period:
One additional flight will operate on December 24, 25, and 27, 2003 and on January 3, 2004.
Two additional flights will operate on January 2, 2004.
3 additional flights will operate on December 28 & 29, 2003.
Four additional flights will operate on New Year's Day, January 1, 2004.
24 Hour Telephone Service Number
Garuda now operates a 24-hour information and reservation system. Domestic passengers can call 0807 1 GARUDA (427833) or internationally to ++62-2123519999.
API To Offer Bali Tokyo Flights in April
Japan Will Represent Sixth Overseas Destination for Bali's Home-Grown Airline. Taipei Flights Suspended until Mid-December.
I Made Wiranatha the Balinese businessman who gave flight to Air Paradise International (API) has recently declared that his airline will start flying three times a week between Bali and Tokyo, commencing in April of 2004.
The Japanese service is scheduled to use Airbus 300-600 equipment in an effort to serve the Japanese market, once the mainstay of Bali's international tourism industry. Once underway, Tokyo will represent the sixth international destination served by API in addition to Perth, Melbourne, Sydney, Taipei, and Seoul.
Taipei Service Temporarily Curtailed
API has suspended its services between Bali and Taipei, due to the sudden drop in Taiwanese visitors to Bali.
The sudden downturn in Taiwanese visitors followed a travel advisory issued by the Taiwanese government after 25 tourists visiting the island developed dysentery in late November 2003. The suspension of service is expected to last until mid-December by which time it is hoped traffic levels will return to normal.
The Taiwanese market has become in recent months the largest inbound market to Bali, supplanting the Japanese and Australian arrival numbers who continue to be far below former levels.
More's Limp than Just Their Biskit
American Rock Group 'Limp Bizkit' Gets Cold Feet at the Eleventh Hour. Cancels Bali Appearance.
The American Rock Group Limp Bizkit won't be coming to Bali.
For that matter, they won't be coming to Manila, Singapore, or Bangkok either.
Citing State Department warnings of heightened security risks, they issued a statement only one day before their scheduled appearance in Singapore on Wednesday, December 3, 2003. According to Singaporean press reports, organizers became concerned when technical crew did not arrive at the airport on Monday as scheduled. The band's spokesman finally clarified on Tuesday that the group was skipping all four countries in the Southeast Asia segment of their tour, blaming the security situation in the region.
Bali Concert Also Cancelled
As a result of the last minute cancellation, a Bali appearance scheduled for Friday, December 5, also got axed.
Reports carried in the Indonesian-language Denpost, quoted Mr. Tommy Pratama of Original Productions - the Indonesian promoter for the Bali concert, as saying the host promotion companies in the 4 affected companies found the Band's sudden decision "unprofessional" and were exploring legal steps available to them against the musical group.