BALI UPDATE #457 - 13 June 2005
Kuta's Security Under the Spotlight
Violent Incident at Kuta Nightspot Prompts Closer Look at Area's Security by Local Officials and Community Leaders.
An incident involving gang violence at Fuel Bar on Jalan Legian in Kuta in the early hours of Sunday, June 6, 2005, has evoke a strong response from community leaders, police and civic leaders concerned at the deteriorating security situation in Kuta and calling for tough action against law-breakers.
According to local press reports, altercations between local youth gangs and security guards, that began on Friday, June 3rd, came to a head in the early hours of Sunday morning a group of young thugs carrying sharp weapons and bottles attacked the up-market bar and music lounge. Fighting reportedly erupted both in the bar and the surrounding streets causing an entire platoon of riot police to respond and close the street while they brought the situation under control.
A number of people were injured in the melee, including a security guard from Fuel who was hospitalized with serious cuts and contusions.
Police Chief Pastika Responds
Clearly angered at the arrogance of those involved in "organized crime" in Bali's night-life areas, Bali's Chief of Police Irjen. Drs. Made Mangku Pastika was quoted in the local press on the Monday following the fracas, saying, "I have heard the those causing the unrest at Fuel Bar numbered 60 people. Catch them all, throw them into jail cells, and show them no toleration!"
At the same time, the Police Chief warned his subordinates not to treat those causing the unrest lightly, eventually letting them go without formal charges being laid against them. Bali's top law enforcement officer said that weakness on the part of the Police feeds the conceit of gang members and becomes a point of reference for other gangs. Saying gang and organized crime was now beyond tolerable limits, Chief Pastika said, "(Even) uniformed law enforcement members are being targeted. They have gone overboard, arrest them all!"
Need for Special Tourism Security Teams
Bali's Chief of Police, Made Mangku Pastika, is calling for the creation of "SATPAM Pariwisata" or special tourism security guards as a necessary step to improve security in Kuta and surrounding areas.
Most Balinese businesses already have private security guard services or "SATPAM," who Chief Pastika would now like to see given special training. Ideally, these guards would be recruited from the local community youth who are currently unemployed, trained in the systems of community policing and taught how to handle public order situations.
Comments by Tourism and Community Leader
I Nyoman Rutha Ady, a local community leader and Head of the local chapter of the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurnant Association (PHRI-Badung), called on the people of Kuta to be open and honest in reviewing the security situation in their neighborhoods.
Urging the police, local government, local citizens and businesspeople to cooperate in creating a wide-ranging and effective approach to security, Rutha Ady pointed to an underlying situation of of poor security running rampant in Kuta. Admitting that the incident at Fuel Bar was unfortunate and unacceptable, he suggested the security problem may be deeper rooted, pointing to the growing boldness of illegal money changers and the inability of law enforcement to end such activities. He asked: "Why can't we (even) stop such open fraud, expecially when the trend shows (illegal money changers) are becoming more aggressive and bold enough to practice their crimes in public places?"
In the week following the unrest in Kuta, police authorities have confirmed that eight individuals have been formally named as suspects in the incident with one, named Gadjah, now formally listed as "wanted" and sought by police.
A police spokesman did not rule out the possibility of further arrests being made as their investigation of the incident continues.
Tying the Knot Twice
Marry the Man of Your Dreams, Wait 25 Years and Do it Again! Popular Bali Travel Publicist, Debe Campbell Remarries Educator, Gil Alvidrez.
Love is lovelier the second time around
Just as wonderful with both feet on the ground
It's that second time you hear your love song sung
Makes you think, perhaps, that love like yours
Is wasted on the young
Who can say what led us to this miracle we've found?
There are those who'll bet love comes but once and yet
I'm oh so glad we met the second time around
"The Second Time Around" - Lyrics by Sammy Cahn
Long-time Indonesia and Bali resident, travel writer and Indonesia publicist Debe Campbell on May 21 retied the knot with her Northern Arizona University (NAU) sweetheart and first husband, Gil Alvidrez, currently a 6th grade teacher in Pinetop, Arizona. Presiding over the ceremony in Pinetop was Justice of the Peace David Wittmire, coincidentally also a NAU alumni graduating with Debe in 1979 from the College of Creative Arts Journalism Department.
Debe and Gil first wed in August 1979 in Las Vegas, where Debe worked in hotel promotions and Gil in construction. After a stint in Tucson, Arizona, the couple lived and worked in Ankara and Adana, Turkey, before separating and later ending their marriage. Their last personal contact was in 1987.
In October 2004, revived communication led to a November rendezvous in Kauai, Hawaii. Thereafter, Gil visited Bali for Christmas and proposed remarriage.
Post-nuptials, the couple focused on the May 26 Blue Ridge Mountain High School l graduation activities of Gil's 18-year-old daughter, Caitlyn, along with reunions at Gil's Arizona home and with Debe's Texas-based family and friends.
The new family of three will reunite in Bali early in July when Caitlyn plans to learn to surf before returning to the US to attend the University of Nevada at Reno. Father, Gil remains confident in securing a teaching contract in the region for the coming school year.
balidiscovery.com extends best wishes and congratulations to Debe and Phil as we look forward to welcoming the Alvidrez family "home" to Bali. Use the e-mail link to send Debe, Gil and Caitlyn your best wishes.
What's All the Racquet?
Rotary Club Nusa Dua-Bali Sets 14th Annual Rotary Charity Tennis Tournament for October 3-9, 2005.
Rotary Club Nusa Dua Bali has announced the formal dates for their 14th Annual Charity Tennis Tournament October 3-9, 2005.
A Major Support to Local Causes
Since the first tournament held in 1992, the Rotary Club Bali Nusa Dua Charity Tennis Tournament has raised over Rp. 250 million (approximately US$26,000) for projects to assist handicapped children in Bali.
According to Tournament Director, Jimmy Roland, this year's event will provide prize monies in the open event totalling Rp. 6 million (approximately US$625) in addition to an exciting range of door prizes, lucky draws and auctions.
Sponsors are supporting prizes for the event as well as using the event as an opportunity to make direct cash contributions for the charity fund that provides medical treatment, surgeries and educational support to Bali's handicapped children.
Players from Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, England, Germany, Italy, Holland, Philippines, France, Argentina, Serbia & Montenegro, and the USA are expected to participate in this year's tournament.
250 players competing in 16 divisions will play at courts located around Nusa Dua, including:
Bali Tennis Academy/Nikko Tennis Courts (Junior & Open)
Westin Resort Tennis Courts (Men Amateur)
Nusa Dua Beach Hotel Tennis Courts (Women Amateur- and Mixed Doubles)
Bali Bowls & Lawn Tennis Club (Senior division & Team Cup)
Special Privileges in Bali for AMEX Cardholders
American Express Launches Ultimately Bali 2005 Program.
American Express launched its 3rd annual Ultimately Bali 2005 Program at a dinner party for its merchant partners at the de Memedi Restaurant at the Garuda Wisnu Kencana Monument Park on Friday, June 10, 2005.
The program provides a large range of attractive offers and savings to visitors travelling to Bali and using an American Express Card for payment when purchasing travel, leisure, dining and general shopping.
The special offers, detailed in an attractive booklet distributed to arriving passengers at Bali's airport, are valid through December 31, 2005. Generous savings and discounts are available on hotel bookings, golf, tour programs, joy flights, day cruises, adventure tours, restaurants, bars and nightspots, jewellery, homeware and household furnishings, gift shops, furniture, fashion, spas and art galleries.
Shown on balidiscovery.com is a picture of Peter Tay Kapoor, Regional Vice President & Area Market Head for American Express International, releasing balloons to mark the launch of "Ultimately Bali 2005."
'Bali Smiles' on Singapore and KL Tour
Fast-Rising Bali Band Sets Off on Another Overseas Tour, Performing in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur in June and July 2005.
"Bali Smile" Performed by Sharadja
London's Mail & Guardian described Bali Smile as a mesmerizing production with "a style that transcends any form of cultural fundamentalism."
London Sunday Times said, "Saharadja in Bali Smile is the ultimate feel good musical extravaganza ... A warm embrace from the Island of Bali by six of its most talented ambassadors. Their version of Sting's "Roxanne" is gold standard ... Masterful, emotionally scorching and jaw dropping in its originality ... The master himself would bow to their superiority!"
South Africa's Die Beeld said the Balinese musical group is a "A whirlwind of talent ... Bali Smile a high octane show!"
A treasured musical commodity at home, here in Bali, Saharadja's latest stage show - Bali Smile covers an entire range of musical styles, managing to lure audiences out of their seats to spontaneously dance a seductive tango or brave an improvised group dance straight out of Lord of the Dance.
Bali Smile is a 90-minute tour de force by Bali's world music band - Saharadja. The show serves up an infectious blend of music that transcends most music genres, mixing acid jazz, Afro-Celtic funk, flamenco guitar playing, classics and pop standards - all played with sheer mastery by Saharadja's six members.
Founded in 2002 by the band's trumpeter-vocalist leader, Rio Sidik, and his Australian-born violinist wife, Sally Jo, - Sharadja defies musical pigeon-holing by playing a range of instruments from trumpet, to electric violin, didgeridoo, a tabla, jembes, flamenco guitar, sarod and fretlass bass. Embracing an entire world of music, the 6-member group is at home with the musical traditions of India, Europe, Ireland, Latin America and their native Indonesian archipelago.
Launch of New Album
The current tour to Singapore and Malaysia also marks the launch in Asia of the group's soundtrack album, Bali's Smile.
The CD, like the show, features a collection of original material balanced by Saharadja's unique spin on such classics as The Police's "Roxanne," John Lennon's "Imagine" and jazz standards, such as "My Funny Valentine" and "Georgia on my Mind."
Singapore Dates June 20 -30, 2005
Bali Smile comes to Singapore's Jubilee Hall at the Raffles Hotel from Monday, June 20 through Thursday, June 30, 2005. Shows are nightly at 8:00 p.m. with a special matinee performance at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 25, 2005.
Kuala Lumpur Dates July 1-3, 2005
Bali Smile will be performed at Kuala Lumpur Actors Studio July 1 3, 2005.
Shows are nightly at 8:00 p.m. with matinee performances on Saturday, July 2, and Sunday, July 3, at 2:30 p.m..
Dipping into Bali
Chicago Tribune List of Favorite Swimming Pools Lists Ubud's Amandari Resort.
A June 6, 2005, article in The Chicago Tribune
on-line edition has a list of top hotel swimming spots compiled by Gary A. Warner.
Originally published in The Orange County Register,
Warner lists the results of more than ten years of comparative diving and dipping into pools from "Bali to Baltimore."
The Amandari - Ubud
Ranking high in Warner's list of favorite pools, is Bali's Amandari Resort
in Sayan, near Ubud. In his review, this pool aficionado waxes affectionately about the ability to float in the Resort's infinity pool, perched on a jungle rover canyon while watching the nearby river and the Balinese drift by.
[Chicago Tribune Article: Top Hotel Swimming Spots
Ubud's Hills are Alive with the Sound of Music
ALiLa Ubud in Bali Provides In-Room iPods as Latest Addition to List of Upscale Guest Amenities.
ALiLa, Ubud's General Manager, Arjan de Boer, would probably personally tuck each guest into bed each night - if he could. Such is his commitment to tirelessly coming up with new ways to pamper people staying at his river canyon resort in Bali's hill-district of Ubud.
Lost in A Foreign Bedscape
Effective June 1, 2005, the 56 room villa resort introduced what it calls a new bedscape of down comforters, 300-thread-count luxuriant bed sheets, and a huge pile of plump pillows all crisp and white in hand-finished beddings. However, the truly indolent must be warned: you'll be faced with tough decisions of whether to repose all day in the lush white bedding or make the short trip to an equally inviting day bed in one of the Resort's superior rooms to enjoy views of the Ayung River gorge.
I Think They're Playing Our Song
Also just introduced at the ALiLa Ubud are in-room iPods. An Apple's revolutionary digital potable music entertainment system is on stand-by in all the Resort's Deluxe and Villa Rooms, each with more than 1,000 pre-loaded songs. While the music on tap focuses on jazz, classical, lounge and contemporary numbers - guests will also have the option of visiting the ALiLa Ubud's music library where a concierge will download other numbers from an almost endless collection.
The iPod music players can be plugged into Bose or Altec Lansing docking stations providing a clean sound in each room.
The Resort, which emphasizes hillside serenity, only provides televisions in guest rooms on request. However, the Library Lounge in the Resort caters to television must haves and also features free broadband internet access. WIFI connection is available at the library, reception lounge, restaurants, meeting rooms and swimming pool lounge.
Largest Sailing Ship Armada Sets Sail from Bali
Ombak Putih Launches Fleet of Mini-Sailing Vessels on World Cruises to Raise Funds for the Komodo Foundation.
PT Ombak Putih, the operators of Ombak Putih and Ombak Biru - two luxurious traditional phinisi sailing vessels offering scheduled departures to the islands east of Bali, have recently launched a very special fleet of miniature sailing vessels to help raise funds for The Komodo Foundation. The Foundation is an independent, non-profit and non-governmental body working in the fields of education and environmental awareness with special emphasis on assisting the coastal and maritime peoples of Komodo and Flores.
The Small Phinisi Fleet
To help celebrate Indonesia's proud heritage as a sailing nation and in order to raise much needed funds for The Komodo Foundation, the public is being offered a chance to own a miniature phinisi wooden schooner, ready for a local christening party and launched on its own world cruise. The small boats, made of wood and each bearing a commemorative plate with a unique registration number, are on sale for Rp. 100,000 each (approximately US$10.20).
Hundreds of the small phinisi wooden boats, whose design is inspired by the traditional Bugis wooden schooners still operating across the Indonesian archipelago, are now set to be launched into seas around the world. Each original purchaser is designated the "First Captain" whose personal details, including launching date and location will be catalogued on the www.indonesiancruises.com web site.
The vessels many hand-painted by their skippers and bearing messages of peace and hope will set course on cruises, determined solely by the winds and currents that will see them potentially crossing oceans and touch new continents along the way. Anyone finding a boat on a distant shore will have the opportunity to record its arrival on the web site and consider becoming its second or subsequent captain by re-launching the boat on its continuing voyage.
An idea, with the potential of resulting in the launch of the world's largest sailing fleet, the miniature phinisi sailing fleet offers a new twist on the ancient message in a bottle tradition and the excitement of watching the world connect, possible only in this age of the Internet.
Individuals and organizations wishing to acquire a boat and launch it in their name, or the name of a loved one, can contact the project's founder, Ms. Marsye La Roque, at Indonesia Cruises via the e-mail contact below.
The On Again Off Again Traffic Jam
Traffic Authorities Hint They'll Make a 'Trial Run' at New Kuta-Legian Traffic Grid Starting Monday, June 13, 2005.
As reported in [ Trafficking in Confusion
], Bali's traffic authorities had announced massive changes in traffic patterns in the Kuta Legian area originally scheduled to take effect on May 1, 2005. However, that date came and went, with traffic officers wringing their hands and citing a need for more "socialization" while promising the new traffic routes would "soon" be implemented.Here We Go Again!
If reports in the local press last are correct, a limited one-week trial period
introducing a portion
of the new traffic grid may
be introduced starting from Monday, June 13, 2005.
If your confused by what follows, so are we.
Jalan Ciung Warna
Vehicle travelling on Jalan Ciung Wanara (the small east-west street running along the side of Kuta Square to Jalan Buni Sari) can only travel in one direction, from Kuta Square towards Jalan Buni Sari.
Vehicles travelling on Jalan Dewi Sartika (the big street running past Waterbom Park and Kuta Center) will not be allowed to turn into Jalan Ciung Wanara. These vehicles will either have to turn east one street earlier, at Jalan Singosari, or continue on travelling north on Jalan Kuta Square.
Jalan Singosari is undergoing a complete direction reversal, now a one way street running from Jalan Dewi Sartika with a single outlet onto northbound Jalan Buni Sari.
Traffic from Jalan Raya Kuta will only be allowed to travel east to west on Jalan Singosari as far as the triple intersection of Jalan Singosari and Jalan Buni Sari where all vehicle must turn right onto Jalan Buni Sari in the direction of Bemo Corner.
While Jalan Dewi Sartika remains two way, vehicles will no longer be able to access the hotels, restaurants and recreation venues in Tuban from Jalan Singosari. Those travelling to these destinations will either have to access this area from the "airport-end" of Tuban or by travelling past Bemo Corner, down Jalan Pantai Kuta (past the original Warung Made) and turn left onto Jalan Kuta Square driving past Kuta Square.
Jalan Dewi Sartika will also be declared a parking-free area. And, no, should you ask, we're not sure where all the horse-drawn dokars
are going.Jalan Arjuna
Jalan Arjuna, which was formerly a two-way street, will become a one-way street running west to east.
According to press reports, however, Jalan Arjuna will continue to be open to "limited" two-way traffic by motorcyclists and tourism vehicles.
Vehicles travelling on Jalan Arjuna will connect to Jalan Werkudara (Padma Utara) via Jalan Paving which is a one-way street travelling north to south.
Jalan Werkudara is a one-way street travelling west to east.A week of Tolerance
Authorities are promising a week of "persuasion" and "tolerance" following the introduction of the changes in traffic direction before introducing more strident enforcement measures. Some Words to the Wise
It might be a good week for those travelling in Kuta to support their local taxi drivers. Whenever possible, delegate frustration.
Give yourself plenty of extra time if you're travelling to or through the affected areas. Consider staying overnight in a Kuta-area hotel for meetings commencing before 10:00 a.m.. Alternatively, you might pack several days of survivial rations.
Before leaving home, make sure your vehicle's horn is in good working order. It won't make much difference, but it's good to have a non-destructive outlet for your frustration close at hand.
Accept assistance from any source. Put Balinese floral offerings on your dashboard right next to the St. Christopher medal.
Consider advancing the start date of your get-fit-start-walking program.
CX to Offer Shanghai Indonesia Flights
July 4, 2005 Launch of Flights Connecting Bali, Surabaya and Jakarta to Shanghai by Cathay Pacific
At a reception held in Surbaya on June 3, 2005, marking the 10th anniversary of flights service between Surabaya and Hong Kong by Cathay Pacific Airways, Airline officials announced that Cathay Pacific will start offering more connecting city services between Indonesia and mainland China commencing from July 4, 2005.
Speaking in Surabaya, Patrick Yeung, Regional Manager for Cathay Pacific in Southeast Asia, told the Jakarta Post, "The new routes we plan to serve are flights from Jakarta, Surabaya and Denpasar to China's industrial town of Shanghai."
Speaking at the same reception, Patrick Yeung added, "Cathay Pacific has been present in Indonesia for more than 40 years. Celebrating our 10-year anniversary in Surabaya underlines our commitment through thick and thin as a reliable partner to Indonesia in the continued development of business, tourism and trade. By strengthening Hong Kong as a global hub and gateway to Chinese Mainland, Cathay Pacific will ultimately be able to better serve Indonesia."
The new flights will all be connecting flight services over the airline's hub in Hong Kong.
For Cliff-Hanging Shopaholics
The Ritz Carlton, Bali Resort & Spa Takes Shopping to the Edge with the Launch of its Designer Cliff Boutique.
A designer lifestyle boutique featuring a collection of international fashion labels, designer brands, exclusive cosmetics and jewellery, home wares, furniture and unique objects of art has opened in Bali with The Cliff Boutique at The Ritz-Carlton, Bali Resort & Spa.
Located in the new Cliff Villa Complex near the Resort's signature DAVA Restaurant - The Cliff Boutique offers a luxurious shopping arcade, covering an impressive 205 square meter of retail floor space displaying ultra modern design elements and layout reflecting Lifestyle, Living, Art Space and Gallery zones.
Entering the stylish boutique through glass doors flanked by latticed stone-works and beautifully crafted Seiki Torige glass-stone flower bowls, the all-marble and timber-floored store offers a vast selection of finery from a range of international purveyors.
A stunning silk-spun effect glass table and chairs set, created as a signature item by renowned glass artist Seiki Torige, is a center piece of the Art Space; whilst exquisitely crafted teak and mahogany bedroom and living furniture using imported Italian fabrics by Erico sits under a trendy art-deco chandelier in the Lifestyle Zone.
Abstract sculpture artist Sumio Suzuki's display of eclectic timber artworks gives an arresting backdrop to the Gallery Quarter, alongside African tribal motif and oriental inspired lamps by Trend Designs, glassware and glassworks by Saga and Seiki Torige and Indonesian artifacts from Vivere.
A stunning array of hand-cast beeswax blend candles, with individual romance cards expressly designed by Kelly Marciano of Sinar Alami Candles, amass an entire wall in a variety of hand-painted designs and colors and feature a signature scent designed exclusively for The Ritz-Carlton, Bali Resort & Spa.
Perfectly crafted Indian diamond jewellery by Mughal is exclusive to the boutique as are precious gold and stone necklaces, bracelets, earrings and rings by Treasures.
Soft interiors and furnishings from Haveli Interiors provide a range of bedspreads, table settings, pillows and curtains as well as beautiful fabrics, silks, wraps and sarongs by Bin House.
Arguably Bali's Most Exclusive Shopping Venue
Designed by Tokyo based Interior Designer, Eriko, the modern boutique also features an exclusive range of cosmetic products from Aromatherapy Associates Limited UK, Thermes Marins, Frederic Fekkai New York, La Prarie and Guinot that are available in Indonesia only through the Bali boutique.
In store labels include Tsunami Swimwear, traditional Indonesian artworks by Vivere, fashion designers Milo, Zenergy, Bin House, interior soft furnishings by Haveli, Salute, Trend Designs, Ritz signature scented candles by Kelly Marciano for Sinar Alami ceramics and glassware by Jengalla, Saga, and Seiki Torige, bags by Bagteria, Mughal Diamonds from India, Treasures gold jewellery, Sumio Suzuki wood sculptures and Erico Furniture.
The Cliff Boutique at the Ritz-Carlton, Bali Resort & Spa opens from 7.00am-11.00pm daily.
Changes in Garuda's Sydney and Brisbane Flights
More Capacity Created by Operating Brisbane Flights Via Sydney.
Garuda Indonesia has announce a change in their Sydney and Brisbane schedules, effective July 14, 2005.
On that date, GA 706 and GA707, flying respectively on Thursday and Friday, will operate as a combined service between Sydney and Brisbane, increasing the number of weekly flights flown by Garuda Indonesia ex Sydney to 5.
New Schedule Details
The new schedule effective July 14, 2005:
GA706 starting on Thursday, July 14, 2005 will depart Denpasar at 2305 hours arriving on Friday morning in Sydney at 0635 hours. The same aircraft will then depart Sydney at 0800 hours on Friday morning for a touchdown in Brisbane at 0915 hours.
GA707 starting on Friday, July 15, 2005, departs Sydney at 0800 hours arriving in Brisbane at 0915 hours. The flight then departs Brisbane at 1030 hours for a landing in Bali at 1440 hours.