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Bali News by Bali Update
BALI UPDATE #941 - 15 September 2014

IN THIS UPDATE


Judgment Day is Nigh
Decision Expected on July 16, 2012 in Bali Governors US$16.6 million Suit Against Bali Post

Seputarbali.com reports that a decision is expected in the civil suit filed by Bali’s governor against The Bali Post before the Denpasar District Court on July 17, 2012.

The head of the judicial panel hearing the case, Amzer Simanjuntak, announced the expected date of the ruling while receiving written summations from both sides on Tuesday, July 3, 2012.

The governor is suing the newspapers for news articles it published on September 19, 2011 under the headline “Governor: Just Dismantle the Traditional Village Units”.

The Tuesday court session was very short with the governor’s and the newspapers team of lawyers handing the court bound editions of their final summations.

All that remains is for the judges to conclude their deliberations in the case and render the decision promised for July 17th.

The governor is seeking US$16.6 million in damages from the Bali newspaper for damages he claims were suffered due to inaccurate reporting.

Related Article

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Heave Ho, and Up She Rises!
Fremantle to Bali Blue Water Yacht Race and Rally Set to Sail May 3, 2013

The biennial Wonderful Indonesia Fremantle to Bali race & Rally 2013 returns in May 2013 with the largest-ever field of competitive races and recreational sailors expected to participate.

First run in 1981, the 2013 event is targeted to attract a fleet of more than 50 ocean-going yachts in what is Western Australia’s only international yacht race covering a distance of 1,440 nautical miles.

Adopted as a theme for the 2013 race is “Fair Breezes, Warm Friendship” with organizers seeking to strengthen friendship and ties between the people of Indonesian and Australia.

The last running of the race and rally in 2011 saw 23 boats sail in the blue water event comprised of 8 racers and 15 rally boats.

Efforts are now underway across Australia to enlist boats and teams to be deploy to the historic port of Fremantle in time for May 4, 2013 sailing.

Western Australian Rolly Tasker won the first running of the race in 1981. In honor of the legendary yachtsmen, the state government of Western Australia has created a memorial trophy in Tasker’s memory. The Rolly Tasker Memorial Trophy for Line Honors will honor both the man and a record performance in the 1981 race that stood unmatched for 30 years until the 2011 running of the race.

[Wonderful Indonesia Fremantle to Bali race & Rally 2013]
 


Not in His Motherí Recipe
Bali-based German Chef Arrested in Bali for Narcotics Possession

A German national hired to work as a chef for the JPS Restaurant in Seminyak, Bali has been apprehended by police after 0.11 grams of methamphetamine were found in his quarters on Jalan Pantai Selatan, Ungasan, South Kuta,

Police caught 31-year-old Sven Hauke Landthaler after making a separate, earlier arrest of Hairani, a Jakarta woman and acquaintance of Landthaler, with 0.12 grams of methamphetamine and an assortment of drug paraphernalia.

The woman, arrested on Monday, July 2, 2012, told police that she obtained drugs from the German which prompted police to make the raid.

Landthaler’s lawyer, meanwhile, is denying his client provided any drugs to the Indonesian woman.

According to Kompas.com, police also confiscated a laptop owned by the German in the hope that it would reveal details of a larger narcotic network.

Sven Hauke Landthaler has been in Bali for several years working until recently ay the Semara Luxury Villa Resort before joining JPS Restaurant.

The relatively small amount of drugs discovered by police is fueling speculation that the German and his Indonesian female acquaintance will be charged as drug users, a classification punished much less severely than those charged with dealing in larger quantities of narcotics.


Home, Home, Home from the Sea
Eight Divers Missing at Sea Near Nusa Lembongan Rescued by Local Fishing Vessel

Eight foreign tourists missing at sea after a diving excursion were saved by a local fisherman late on Thursday evening, July 7, 2012.

The State News Agency Antara quotes the local chief of the National Search and Rescue Squad, Ketut Gede Ardana, saying, “The were rescued by the Ship ‘Sumer Laut 01’ on Thursday at 10:40 pm. local time.”

At the time of their rescue the 7 missing French nationals and 1 German were afloat some 11 miles south of Nusa Lembongan island, meaning swift currents had managed to carry the group that distance from the island in the approximately 6 hours since their disappearance.

The exhausted divers were carried by the fishing boat to the harbor of Benoa in Bali where they were safely disembarked at 4:00 a.m. on Friday morning.

The Captain of the Indonesian fishing vessel, Sismono (50), told Bali Post that his ship was returning to Bali after an extended fishing trip to Flores when he saw a light in the high seas shone by one of the group of eight divers. The captain found the group of divers in seas, estimated at 3 meters in height, still wearing their diving equipment and holding hands in a circle as they floated further into open seas carried by strong currents.

Captain Sismono together with his crew of 12 men hauled the divers aboard his ship. Due to language limitation, the divers suffering from shock after 6 hours afloat could not communicate with the crew who gave them water and instant noodles.

The divers spent 6 hours after their rescue aboard the ship while it made its way to the Bal port.

The group was reportedly well enough to directly return to their accommodation on Tulamben beach, North Bali.

Members of the Search and Rescue Squad will meet with the divers today to collect more details surrounding their disappearance.

The 8 divers were part of a larger group of 12 divers reportedly handled by Bali-based marine operator Dive Concepts who commenced a dive at 3:45 pm on Thursday afternoon near the mangrove area of Nusa Lembogan. When the group resurfaced at 4:30 pm, only 4 of the original 12 divers returned.

The National Search and Rescue Squad (BASNARNAS) was informed of the missing divers at 7:20 pm and were preparing to launch a massive sea search with the first light of day on Friday morning.

The weather conditions at the scene of the dive at the time of the disappearance included strong winds and high waves.

The names of the divers rescued by the local fishing vessel are:

Maureen Craik (French)
Kelly Fernandez (French)
Kate Dillon (French)
Sara Harrop (French)
Andrea Murachelli (French)
Francois Haberkorn (French)
Thibeault Legrand (French)
Alina Herman (German)



Meanwhile the four drivers who returned safely on Thursday afternoon are:

Floriant (French)
Raphael Crauth (German)
Robert Lucas (French)
Caroline Telfer (French)


Garuda: The Skyís the Limit
Garuda Targets 80% Growth in Fleet and Passengers by 2015

The Indonesian National Flag Carrier Garuda Indonesia is targeting to operate 144 aircraft carrying 29 million passengers by the year 2015.

Currently, Garuda flies 81 airplanes with 15.5 million passengers carried in 2011.

If Garuda meets its self-proclaimed goals, this will translate into an 80% increase in business in only 3.5 years.

Quoted by Kompas.com, Emirsyah Satar the CEO of Garuda Indonesia said the 2015 targets are firm. Moreover, Emirsyah said that if the operating results of the Garuda subsidiary Citilink are added to the mix then the total number of planes currently in operation becomes 95 with a total passenger uplift equals 17.1 million.

Effective July 5, 2012 Citilink now holds its own Airline Operating Certificate (AOC) making it an independent operation distinct from Garuda. Citilink’s own growth targets for 2015 stipulate 50 airplanes carrying 16.4 million passengers in 2015.


It's About TIME
Tourism Indonesia Mart & Expo (TIME 2012) to be Held in Lampung, South Sumatra October 9-12, 2012

The rotating travel mart sponsored each year by the Indonesian government - Tourism Indonesia Mart & Expo (TIME 2012 - Pasar Wisata) will be held in Lampung, South Sumatra October 9-12, 2012.

The travel mart is held each year to showcase Indonesian travel products to international sellers.

Organizers are targeting 150 buyers for TIME 2012 at an event intended to present all of Indonesia in a single location and encourage business-to-business contact between Indonesian sellers and international businesses promoting travel.

In keeping with the rotating location for each year’s TIME, the 2012 event will also provide opportunities for participants to become familiar with the tourism opportunities and sites available to visitors to South Sumatra

Booths are now on sale to Indonesian-based travel companies with special early bird discounts starting at Rp. 10 million (US$ 1,075) for booth bookings made before August 31, 2012.

[Sellers Information for TIME Indonesia]

[Information for Buyers]


Oh Happy Days!
Schapelle Corby Mood Improves on Prospects of Early Release and Parole from Prison

The Sydney Morning Herald is reporting that as Schapelle Corby prepares to celebrate her 35th birthday behind bars in Bali on Monday, July 9, 2012, she is at her “happiest” with renewed hopes of an early release from her 20-year prison sentence.

Behind bars since she was first arrested in 2004 with 4.1 kilograms of marijuana in her checked luggage as she arrived on a flight from Australia, fears that a remission of five years granted by Indonesian President Yudhoyono was in jeopardy were ameliorated with the news that judicial efforts by a citizen’s group to invalidate the remission in sentence have failed before the National Administrative Courts.

When, exactly, Corby will walk free from the Kerobokan prison depends on a number of factors:
  • A strict application of the five-year remission to her currently remaining sentence means Corby would be released in September 2017, several months after her 40th birthday.
  • On the well-founded assumption that Corby will be granted further sentence cuts on Indonesian Independence Day and at Christmas, and calculating the maximum remission of eight months per year in return for sterling behavior, Corby could be released in early 2015.
  • Technically, Corby would be eligible for parole as early as September of 2012, but the granting parole to foreign prisoners is highly problematic as Corby would not be allowed to leave Indonesia for the duration of her parole period and does not hold the necessary permits to work during the time she would be on parole. The Australian government would also have to issue formal guarantees on behalf of Corby together with separate guarantees from her family
Meanwhile, the head of the prison, Gusti Ngurah Wiratna, describes Schapelle now aware of chances for an early release from prison as "definitely the happiest she has been for a long time". Adding, "I feel that she's no longer afraid."

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Cool, Clear, Water
Denpasar Short on Water While Awaiting New Water Installations

Bali Daily (Jakarta Post) describes Denpasar’s critical shortage of water and official hopes that a worsening crisis will be averted with two new water treatment plants scheduled to come on line in early 2013.

Denpasar currently derives its water supply from the polluted Ayung River to serve some 70,676 consumers after an elaborate water purification process. Supply of fresh water has become sufficiently critical that the State Water Board (PDAM) has put 3,000 new connections to the water system on hold until new water supplies become available.

Two new water plants set for operation early in 2013 will bring water from the Petanu River in Gianyar regency and the Penet River in the Badung regency.

The two new water plants are part of a private consortium - Sarbargitaku - covering Tabanan, Klungkung, Denpasar and Badung. Total cost of the entire water project covering four regencies in Bali is put at Rp. 1,305 trillion (US$139.63 million).

Denpasar is currently running a fresh water deficit of 54 liters per second. This will be addressed via the two new water plants that will provide 300 liters of new water supply per second.

Subsequent phases in the water project will bring new water supplies on line for the people of Gianyar, Klungkung, Denpasar, Badung and Tabanan.

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Benoa to Nusa Dua Toll Road: Not According to Plan?
Environmental Group Says Benoa to Bali Toll Way Construction Not Keeping Promise to Protect Mangrove Forests

The State News Agency Antara and Seputarbali.com reports that the Friend of the Earth Indonesia (WALHI) are leveling criticism towards the Benoa to Nusa Dua elevated highway as being built in opposition to good environmental practice and not in accordance with the project's environmental impact study.

The deputy-director of Walhi-Bali, Suriadi, said: “The construction of the Benoa-Nusa Dua toll way should be using suspension pillars and not excavating the mangrove’s waterway. But a visit to the construction site shows just the opposite is happening.”

Suriadi contends that when the toll way project was presented to the public, assurances were made that the project would minimize its impact on the environmentally sensitive and protected mangrove forest. The promises, he complains, are being swept aside and excavated causeways are being built alongside the suspended highway. He views that these causeways are destroying the local ecosystem.

The environmental activist continued: “The commitment to protect the sustainability of the shore area ecosystem in Bali must be consistently carried out. In the project’s documentation it is stated the toll way would use suspended pillars in order to avoid excavation (of the mangrove), but at this point in time land is being excavated in order to accelerate the road’s construction.”

Suriadi concludes that the process of developing the project was done too hurriedly without proper technical planning resulting in environmental damage to the coastal lands of Bali.


Illegal Expatriate Workers in Bali
Denpasar Manpower Official Claims Many Foreigners in Bali are Abusing Visa Rules

Radar Bali reports that data from the Denpasar Manpower Department shows more than 500 foreign workers are currently registered with their office.

According to the Bali Post, the provincial Manpower office for Bali counted 1,420 foreigners holding work permits in nine regencies and municipalities across the island in 2010, a number that increased to 1,455 in 2011. The provincial data shows most foreign workers were employed in the hotel and restaurant sectors, with workers from Australia, Japan and France dominating the ranks of expatriate workers.

Manpower officials bemoan that fact that many more expatriates working in Bali are misusing the visa facilities extended by the Republic for use by foreign workers and visitors.

The head of the Manpower office for Denpasar, Erwin Suryadharma Sena, who formerly served as the official spokesman for the municipality of Denpasar, complained that many foreigners are working in Bali on visitor’s visas, an act in direct violation of Indonesian law.

He said many illegal foreign workers in Bali are employed in the tourism, fisheries and educational sectors. In the educational sector, Erwin explained, many foreigners are working illegally as foreign language instructors.

According to Erwin, many violations labor rules are not solely due to poor supervision and enforcement by the authorities, but also due, in part, to the lack of qualified workers in Denpasar. He said the urgent need for workers in some sectors of the economy brings many illegal workers to Denpasar from Taiwan, Russia, the U.S.A. and China.

He continued: “In order to supervise illegal workers we have established a joint task force. But, at the same, we need the active participation of the public to help enforce labor laws as the number of staff we have to do this is limited.”


Air Access is the Key
Tourism Minister Pangestu Sees Fostering of Direct Flights to Indonesia as Fundamental to Tourismís Growth

Indonesia’s Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Mari Elka Pangestu, sees direct flights as critical to increasing international tourist flows to Indonesia.

As reported by Bisnis.com, the Minister points to steps underway since March 2012 to increase direct flight frequencies from Japan to Bali. Pangestu cites the opening of additional flights from Japan as resulting in positive growth in tourist numbers.

According to Pangestu, tourist visitors to Bali from Japan increased 12.01% in May 2012, when compared to the same month one year before.

“This development is probably tied to opening flights by Garuda Indonesia between Haneda and Denpasar since April 27, 2012 and the recovery of the Japanese economy from the effects of the tsunami and nuclear power plant disaster,” Pangestu explained.

The Minister insists that direct flight are proven to be an important factor to increase tourism flows, especially when the flight frequency for the new Haneda-Denpasar flights are five times a week.

Analysis carried out by the Ministry has also confirmed that increasing flight frequencies from Malaysia to Jakarta by Garuda Indonesia and Malaysian Airline have resulted in a corresponding increases in visitors from those destinations. Similarly, additional flight frequencies by JetStar and Qantas have help grow visitors arrivals.

The Ministry is optimistic that a recovery in the number of Taiwanese visitors will be precipitated by the recent commencement of Taipei-Denpasar service by Garuda Indonesia.

Pangestu concluded her comments by pointing to the fact that the cumulative total of foreign tourist visitors to Indonesia for the period January – May 2012 has increased over the same period in 2011.


Ending the Senseless Slaughter
Chinese Prohibition on Serving Sharksí Fin at Official Dinners May Help Protect Indonesiaís Dwindling Shark Population

Plans by the People’s Republic of China to outlaw the consumption of sharks’ fin at official receptions may cause a downturn in the export of that commodity from Indonesia and significantly aid efforts to conserve dwindling shark populations in the world’s oceans.

According to CNN, the ban on sharks’ fin at official dinners in China will be introduced over three years.

The PRC government’s move, apparently, is less motivated by environmental awareness than a desire to decrease the cost of official state dinners amidst the skyrocketing cost of shark’s fins harvested from a dwindling population of sharks.

Martha Lo from the Hong Kong Shark Foundation, quoted by Kompas.com, said the move by the Chinese government has real potential to reduce the wanton slaughter of sharks due to China’s role as the world’s largest consumer of that commodity.

It is estimated that between 26 and 73 million sharks are killed each year to harvest their fins. In many instances, the sharks’ fins are cut from the animals bodies after which the still-living sharks are tossed back into the ocean to die.

Meanwhile, the World Wildlife Fund says that 181 species of sharks are threatened with extinction, increasing from only 15 species under threat in 1996.

Indonesia is one of the leading sources of shark fins, representing 14% of the worldwide elasmobranches caught between 1998 and 2002, according to a study carried out by Murdoch University (Australia).

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Strong May for Bali Tourism
Bali by the Numbers: Bali Poised to Welcome More than Three Million Foreign Visitors in 2012

May 2012 foreign tourist arrivals suggest that the halcyon days of double-digit growth in monthly tourist arrivals to Bali may be at an end. May arrivals totaled 215,868 – an increase of only 5.56% as compared to arrivals for May 2011 (204,489).

Bali: 3 million Tourists in 2012

On a cumulative basis, Bali foreign tourist arrivals for January-May 2012 hit 1,131,462 demonstrating growth of 9.71% over the same five months in 2011. With five months arrivals under its belt, Bali can now project more than 3 million foreign tourist for all of 2012, if the current rate of growth is sustained until year's end.

Performance from Major Source Markets

Australia – More and more Australians continue to visit Bali with month-on-month arrivals up 9.3% at 61,266 for the month of May 2012. While this is a respectable rate of growth, Australia’s ability to generate double-digit improvement in arrivals month after month may be ending.

Year-on-year Australian arrivals for the first five months of the year are up 9.71%. If this rate of growth is sustained, Australia will generate over 860,000 visitors for the entire year.

Peoples Republic of China – The PRC is now squarely in second place as the second largest source of visitors to Bali. May 2012 arrivals of 19,089 saw 22% more Chinese visitors than the same month in 2011. Chinese arrivals surged during the Lunar New Year meaning year-on-year arrivals from the PRC are up an astounding 64.82%

Malaysia – Malaysia arrivals now ranks #3 among all foreign visitors to the island. May arrivals totaled 16,311 – an increase of 12.9% over May 2011. That Malaysia’s growth in arrivals to Bali may be cooling is indicated by a year-on-year growth factor of 3.57%. Malaysia has moved up from 4th place among all arrivals in 2011 to its current ranking of #3.

Japan – Once the undisputed leading source of Bali visitors, Japan has slumped to a distant 4th place. After an extended period of month-on-month negative growth in arrivals from Japan, it appears that governments plans to encourage more direct flights from that country is reaping rewards. May 2012 arrivals from Japan are up 8.2% when compared to May 2011.

And, while year-on-year arrivals through the end of May are down 11.95% from Japan, both April and May have once again shown positive growth in arrivals from that market.

South Korea – South Korea has moved into 5th place among all arrivals to Bali, May 2012 arrivals, however, slipped 12.6% when compared to 2011 at 10.121 arrivals.

Year-on-year South Korean arrivals are up 6.15%.

United Kingdom – The U.K. has move up a notch in 2012 to 6th place among all source markets for Bali. May arrivals from the U.K. (8,651) improved 10.39% over the same month in 2011. Year-on-year U.K. arrivals have improved 12.51%
.
Taiwan – Taiwanese arrivals are on the decline, despite new flights flown by Garuda to Taipei. Slipping to 7th place among all arrivals from its former #5 position just one year ago, Taiwan arrivals fell a dramatic 38.8% in May 2012 as compared to May 2011. Year-on-year there are 14.76% fewer Taiwanese visiting Bali thus far in 2012.

France – French arrivals to Bali are stagnating, improving only 1.5% in May 2012 at 9.673 visitors.

Year-on-year visitors from France are down 0.21%.

Russia –Russian arrivals dipped 6.41% in May 2012 at 3,937 visitors. Year-on-year arrivals from Russia through the end of May are up 6.46%

U.S.A. – The U.S.A. markets continues to demonstrate strong growth month-on-month with an increase of 22.51% at 7,777 visitors.

U.S. visitors year-on-year are up 11.41% through the end of May.

Germany – Germany is a bright spot among European arrivals to Bali up 26.8% as compared to May one year ago. On a cumulative basis, through the end of May, German arrivals are up 10.83%.

The Netherlands – Dutch arrival continued to be lackluster, up only 2.2% in May at 4,570 visitors. On an aggregate basis through the end of May, Dutch arrivals are down 2.9%.

Arrivals By Geographical Area

Regional traffic is shaping Bali’s tourism destiny with 71.71% of all arrivals coming from the Asia-Pacific and ASEAN. If the  impact of domestic arrivals, put at 55% of all arrivals, is thrown into the mix, then something on the order of 90% of all tourist arrivals to Bali come from domestic and regional sources.


Seeking a Promotion for a Lt. Colonel
Buleleng Seeking to Lengthen and Upgrade Status of Ltkol Wisnu Airstrip in North Bali

Commission B of the Buleleng House of Representatives (DPRD-Buleleng) is undertaking a survey in response to a suggestion from the Department of Transportation to convert the private north Bali Letkol Wisnu Airstrip into a commercial landing field.

As reported by the State News Agency Antara, the chairman of Commission B of the DPRD-Buleleng, Putu Mangku Budiasa, said on Tuesday, July 3, 2012, that in order for the current landing field to be upgraded to commercial status a number of significant improvements are still needed.

He explained that one of the basic requirements is to lengthen the runway to 900 meters. In fact, an ideal length would be 1,500 meters. The runway’s current length is only 600 meters.

The Bali International Flight Academy (BIFA), who is currently using the Letkol Winsu field for training young pilots, strongly supports moves to upgrade the status of the airfield.

Mangku Budiasa told the press that the Directorate General of Transportation has been very responsive to the Buleleng Administration’s desire to gain commercial airport status for the only airport in north Bali.

Local support for the upgrade as taken the form of an allocation in the 2012 Buleleng regency’s budget to build a control tower and undertake repairs of the airport’s navigation system.


Architecture For Kids
Bali Architect Pop Danes Hosts 6th Annual Introduction to Design and Architecture for Children

For the sixth time, architect Popo Danes and Danese Art Veranda hosted its annual “Architecture for Kids” program. Held over the school holiday period, the program provides a stimulating introduction to the world of architectural design for children aged 5-11 years.

The 6th Architecture for Kids program hosted 31 eager children.

Encouraging children to give expression to their creativity, the program pioneered by Balinese architect Popo Danes exposes children to the core values of design through working with drawings and simple paperwork models.

According to Popo, these activities attempt to introduce the profession of an architect as well as giving the participants the opportunity to explore interests and talents while stimulating their creativity.

Leading this year's group of children were architect Popo Danes and Melati Danes Interior.

Three sessions are presented to the children. The first is a drawing program in which kids are given a chance to sketch their dream house. Then the young participants are given a tour of an architect’s office to become familiar with the working environment of architecture. Finally, the kids work with three-dimensional paperwork construction from which to construct a model of their dream house.

During the first session the children are given the chance to express their creativity individually by drawing their dream house on A3 size paper. After finishing their drawing, they are instructed to color their design following which each participant explains their “dream house” to the others in the group.

One of the participants, 9 years old Khalil, drew a very imaginative mansion house with a big garage and cars and a lots of windows. Another child, 8-year-old Zeph, drew a house using solar panel explaining his house would help the earth become green. He also designed his house to include lots of sport equipments.

The drawing and coloring session finished, the participants enjoyed lunch together. The next session, a tour of an architecture office began after lunch. The children were exposed to the working atmosphere of professional architects and see the many tools and materials used in their field of work. The group seemed particularly impressed with the 3-dimensional mock-ups of projects being developed at the office.

The third session of day allowed the participants to create their own simple 3-dimensional mock-ups. Working with craft paper, the children first had to determine the number of rooms and layout of their mock-up before beginning to shape the craft paper. The kids enjoyed picking colors, shapes and deciding what exterior elements to add to the mock-up including, plants, swimming pools and event pets.

After making presentations regarding their individuals projects the group posed for a photo together with their projects,

Shown on Balidiscovery.com are pictures from the most recent “Architecture for Kids 2012” program.


New Appointments at Westin Nusa Dua
Dewi Anggraini and Marc Matar Join Westin Nusa Dua, Bali

The Westin Nusa Dua, Bali has appointed two new senior associates to their team.

Marc Matar

Marc Matar has been appointed to the role of Director of Food & Beverage.

Matar is a French national who has developed his skills across various departments for a number of luxurious hotels whilst studying for his diploma and MBA in Hospitality Management. A veteran with the Starwood brand, he arrives in Bali after a two-year stint as Director of Food and Beverage at Hotel Le Meridien Beach Plaza, Monte-Carlo, Monaco.

Passionate about good food and wine, Matar will be responsible for revitalizing all dining concepts at The Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali.

Dewi Anggraini

Dewi Anggraini has assumed the role of Director of Marketing Communications at the resort.

Balinese born, Dewi is a Business Administration graduate with a solid background in tourism. She began her career in 1996 as a Front Office Secretary with Bali Cliff Resort. For the past 12 years Dewi has worked exclusively in the area of Public Relations for the InterContinental Bali Resort.

Dewi’s new role at The Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali will involve reinforcing brand standards and ensuring that the property maintains a strong visual presence within the domestic sector. She will also be instrumental in helping to reposition the Bali International Convention Centre as the island’s leading MICE venue following a soon to be completed refurbishment project.

Bipan Kapur, Managing Director of The Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali, commenting on the new appointments said: “As the resort continues to evolve it is important that we appoint new associates who can bring us fresh perspectives and innovative ideas. Both Marc and Dewi are young and energetic hospitality professionals with all the essential qualities to succeed in their respective roles. I am sure that Marc’s impeccable French-inspired style and Dewi’s local insight into Bali’s rich cultural heritage will be a real asset to the property.”
 


Bali as Seen in the 1930s
Exhibition of Miguel Covarrubias Sketches at ARMA Museum Through August 8, 2012

The Agung Rai Museum of Fine Art (ARMA) in cooperation with Red & White Publishing is sponsoring an exhibition of fine sketches by Miguel Covarrubias through August 8, 2012.

The exhibition includes 70 original rare sketches made by the Mexican artist and author Miguel Covarrubias in the early 1930s  while he and his wife were resident in Bali, along with original works in the collection of ARMA.

Miguel Covarrubias (1904-1957) was a renowned Mexican painter and caricaturist, ethnologist and art historian. He married his wife, Rosa, in 1930 and embarked on an extended honeymoon to Bali where they studied Balinese culture, language and rituals.

He made a second visit to Bali in 1933 as a Guggenheim Fellow resulting in the book Island of Bali, a best selling anthropological study on Bali that remains in print and academically relevant nearly 80 years after its original publication.

The exhibition marks the launch of a new book “Miguel Covarrubias: Sketches, Bali – Shanghai”.

Miguel Covarrubias: Sketches, Bali – Shanghai
ARMA – Agung Rai Museum of Fine Art
Through August 8, 2012
Open Daily 8:00 am – 6:00 pm

Jalan Raya Pengosekan Ubud
Ubud, Bali
 


Removing Roadblocks to Tourism
Indonesiaís Central Government Pledges Full Attention on Upgrading Bali Traffic Infrastructure

Indonesia’s Interior Minister, Gamawan Fauzi presented a very grim outlook on the future of traffic congestion in Bali.

Quoted by VIVAnews, Gamawan said: “I predict that by 2015 Bali will encounter total gridlock. This has to be quickly resolved. And, the provincial government of Bali has already undertaken coordination with the Central Government to discuss this problem.”

The Minister’s comments were made at the office of Bali’s governor on Monday, July 2, 2012.

Gamawan mentioned a number of specific traffic junctions in Bali of particular concern, including the roads surrounding Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport. “The journey from the Ngurah Rai Airport to Denpasar which usually takes only 30 minutes, can now take 1.5 hours when the roads are congested,” he complained.

He also specifically cited a point of congestion in front of a well-known  t-shirt store in Kuta where the large number of tourist buses, sometimes numbering as many as 80, are parked along the roadside, often bringing traffic to a standstill.

Gamawan said that infrastructure problems in Bali have become a matter of national importance, requiring cooperation between the province and the national government in order to resolve. He explained that Bali’s governor has been invited to participate in several limited meetings of the National Cabinet in order to provide insights and explanations on Bali’s traffic problems.

The Minister said that Bali’s traffic problems are receiving serious attention from the Central Government with steps underway or in planning to ease traffic flows.


Hoping for the Best, Preparing for the Worst
Australian Government Lending Important Disaster Preparedness Assistance to Bali

Bali Daily (The Jakarta Post) reports that the Australian government will assist Bali in developing an effective emergency management system in order to help the island deal with future natural and manmade disasters.

The pledge of continuing and escalated cooperation in the area of disaster contingency planning follows a recent visit by Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Bali governor Made Mangku Pastika to Australia’s Northern Territory during which they visited medical facilities that provided critical care to many of the victims of the 2005 Bali bombing.

Reporting the Bali legislators on his recent trip, governor Pastika said: “For Bali, the most important thing from the visit to Australia is the cooperation agreed between Bali and Australia to arrange and design contingency plans to deal with disasters.”

Pastika said that a joint cooperation agreement is now in hand between Bali Sanglah General Hospital and the Royal Darwin Hospital. “We signed an agreement between Sanglah Hospital and Royal Darwin Hospital as sister hospitals. If something is happening in Bali, the Royal Darwin Hospital can help us with contingency plans. It takes only 2 hours 45 minutes to arrive at Royal Darwin from Bali by plane,” Pastika said. 



Pastika praised the facilities, trained personnel and state of emergency preparedness of the Royal Darwin Hospital. He also revealed that the Australian government has been helping Bali with its disaster contingency planning since last year. “Several members of the Bali chapter of the Indonesian Red Cross were also sent to Australia to take part in disaster management training funded from the provincial budget."

Australia is helping Bali

 upgrade it Emergency Center that serves as the nerve center for disaster response in Bali. The center is staffed by 71 personnel and operates 24 hours a day.


Seeking a Truce in Time of War
Bali Governor Calls for an End to Hotel Price War

Bali’s governor Made Mangku Pastika is warning Bali Hotels to immediately end an incipient price war, saying such activity will only serve to cheapen Bali’s tourism image and thwart efforts to recruit quality tourists to the island.

The growing range of cheap accommodation in Bali, according to the governor, is turning Bali into a mass tourist destination. Moreover, Pastika blames the lack of clear pricing standards for hotels is causing luxury hotels to be sold at prices that are too low.

‘For instance,” said Pastika to Bertiabali.com on July 6, 2012, “a 5-star hotel should not be sold below a specific price, 4-star hotels should have a set price, and the government could base its tax calculations on these set prices. For example a 5 star hotel could be US$400 dollar and if they sell it for US$200, then go ahead, the hotel will only suffer (a higher tax rate).”

Pastika also admitted that the increasing and uncontrolled construction of new hotels has also contributed to the current price war and the ever-declining cost of a room in Bali.

Data from the Bali Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI-Bali) estimates that Bali has 65,000 official hotel rooms.


Speak Up! Say Whatís on Your Mind
Baliís Governor Invites Ideas, Suggestions and Public Criticism

Bali’s governor Made Mangku Pastika is inviting the public in Bali to have the courage to speak up and make their opinions known, feeling free to make suggestions or criticize the government.

Pastika’s remarks, reported by Kompas.com, were made during his monthly open forum and dialogue held with the government of Klungkung and the local populace on Saturday, July 7, 2012. The governor said the town hall or open house format is intended to provide opportunities to the public to make suggestions, offer ideas and make criticisms of current programs in an open forum unfettered by bureaucracy. The governor has held a monthly open house since his election in August 2008.

At the most recent open house in Klungkung, Pastika reiterated his desire to see Bali operate in a more open, transparent and accountable manner. “Let’s solve Bali’s problems in a relaxed atmosphere,” said Pastika who was accompanied by the regent of Klungkung and leaders of traditional villages.

The Klungkung meeting was also attended by members of the Klungkung House of Representatives (DPRD-Klungkung), provincial officials, regency officials and hundred of regular citizens from across Bali.



Ending the Taxi Monopoly at Baliís Airport
Bali Legislator Wants Public Bus System Extended to Ngurah Rai Airport

Members of the Bali House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali) are urging the provincial government to provide public transport to Bali’s airport by extending the service network for the Trans Sarbagita Bus System.

Quoted by the State News Agency Antara, Made Budastra, a member of Commission III DPRD-Bali, said: “The provincial government must coordinate with PT Angkasa Pura I Ngurah Rai (the management authority of the airport), in order that the Trans Sarbagita Bus System can bring passenger in and out of the airport.

Budastra declared that it is the government’s responsibility to make sure public transportation, like the Trans Sarbagita Buses, can enter the airport.

“It may be the Ngurah Rai Airport is the only airport in Indonesia not served by public transport,” declared Budastra. Adding, “Arriving passengers leaving the airport are compelled to use the Ngurah Rai Taxi Service, because they have no other alternative.”

He said the current situation explains why tourists often complain that transportation from Bali’s airport is expensive. “Local citizens as well as tourists are complaining about the monopoly of taxis from the airport,” he said.

As reported previously by Balidiscovery.com, the current monopoly on taxi service from Bali’s airport is in strict violation of Indonesian anti-monopoly laws (see related articles).

Related Articles

[Self-Serving or Serving the Public?]

[Is Bali's Airport Taxi Operation Illegal?
 


 
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