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TAMAN MAYURA...An Oasis in the City!
Most people visiting Cakranegara – the city east of Mataram, usually abbreviated to Cakra – see little of the treasures that are hidden amongst the shops and buildings. To most visitors it is just another busy Indonesian city.
Yet, tucked away on back streets and wedged between busy roads and crowded buildings, the history and culture of this city remains… timeless and fascinating.
Taman Mayura, or Mayura Water Park, is located on the busy main road of Jl Selaparang in Cakra (see Cities Map on page 50).
The complex was built in 1744 as the palace gardens for the last Balinese kings in Lombok.
The park was originally named Taman Kelapug, based on the sound of the water bubbling out of the underground springs here. In 1866 the park was renovated by the King of Mataram, AA Ngurah Karang Asem, and renamed Taman Mayura.
Spread over around 3 hectares, the grounds are beautiful and spacious, and dominated by a large artificial lake. In the centre of the lake is a Bale Kembang (a floating pavilion) that was once used for court trials. It is now occasionally used for meetings.
A walkway leads around the lake, lined with large Cempaka trees perfuming the air, and interspersed with frangipani and mango trees.
At the rear of the park, on the left, is the Balinese Hindu temple Pura Jagatnatha (Jagatnatha Temple), enclosed by brick walls and entered through traditional temple gates.
Within the temple compound are three shrines, together with some seating pavilions and a tall bell tower housing the Kul-kul (slotted temple drums traditionally used to communicate with the community).
The centre shrine towers above the other three, with seven levels rising above the steps to a crown at the top, and is decorated with dragons and older statues. To the left and right are smaller shrines and candi, decorated with old statues.
Back outside, another temple is set at the rear of the lake – Pura Kelapug, which retains the old name of the park and is where the royal family used to come to worship.
A huge, ancient Beringin, or Banyan Tree, with tangles of roots hanging to the ground, forms a backdrop to this sacred temple, which is decorated with beautiful old statues.
In the foreground are rows of water serpents spilling water into the covered fresh water springs.
Today the palace gardens are a popular place for picnics for local families and can become crowded on the weekends and public holidays. Visitors can fish in the lake or hire canoes and “swan boats” to paddle around.
The best time to visit is during the weekdays, when the park is a glorious haven of serenity, even though the city bustles just on the other side of the walls.
Just across the road from Taman Mayura is Pura Mayura – an interesting Balinese Temple built in 1720. The main feature of this temple is its three tall meru – elaborate multi-tiered temple structures with thatched roofs. It’s easy to combine a visit to both these historic sites in a day trip to the city.
• Henry’s Grill & Bar in Kuta (that’s Bali, not Kuta Lombok) has only been open for a few months but is quickly earning a solid reputation for fabulous food.
The 2-storey modern eatery features an open kitchen and specialises in meat, particularly dry-aged steaks, with everything cooked to order on the wood-fire grill.
For a limited time at Henry’s you can get their famous Tomahawk Steak, plus a beer bucket to wash it down with, for just Rp 250,000 ++!
Henry’s is located on Jl Kartika Plaza in front of Aryaduta Hotel Bali, just beside Lippo Mall Kuta. If you’re over that way, stop in for the best steak deal in town! See page 10.
• Blue Water Express is one of the leading fast boat operators between Bali, Lombok and the Gili Islands, with an excellent reputation for safety and reliability.
It’s also one of the fastest ways to travel with departures from both Serangan Harbour (in south Bali) and Padang Bai (in north Bali).
As a special offer to our readers, from July to September simply book online and use the code “LOMBOKGUIDE” to receive a 10% discount on fares. See advert on page 73.
• Pasta Pojok has got wheels! Now you can have delicious and authentic Italian meals delivered to your door.
Simply phone and request delivery (anywhere in the Senggigi area) when you place your order, then sit back and let Pasta Pojok do the rest. No need to dress up or go out and no need to compromise on flavor and quality! See page 20.
(Psst: other great restaurants that deliver food locally are Asmara Restaurant in Senggigi and Temptations Café in Green Valley.)
• The lovely Malaka Restaurant at Living Asia Resort, just 7km north of Senggigi, sits right on the peaceful beachfront at Lendang Luar and offers fantastic views across the ocean to Bali.
Guests can now enjoy theme dinners held at Malaka Restaurant every week. Get there early and enjoy a cocktail or cold beer while watching the beautiful sunsets before dinner.
Tuesday night is the Malaka Fish Market when guests can enjoy a feast of fresh fish and seafood on the beach.
Every Thursday, you can sample the best of authentic local cuisine with Indonesia Night. On Saturday nights, the resort hosts an all you can eat Beach BBQ Buffet.
Buffet Dinners at Malaka Restaurant are great value and include soup, salad and dessert, plus live music, for just Rp 275,000 nett. See our back cover for details.
Simultaneous elections were held in NTB (the islands of Lombok and Sumbawa) on 27 June 2018 to appoint a new Governor and Vice Governor for the province.
At the time of going to print, the General Elections Commission (KPU) had not finished counting the votes. An official announcement is expected to be made between 7 and 9 July.
However, the results of the “quick count” indicate that the winning candidates are the pairing of “Zul-Rohmi”, i.e. Zulkieflimansyah and Sitti Rohmi Djalilah.
The “quick count” results were announced within 24 hours of the polls closing. Experience shows that quick count results rarely differ from the results of the real (physical) count by the KPU, with an average difference of less than 1 percent between the two counts.
Zulkieflimansyah is a Member of Parliament of the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS), who is also Rector of the Sumbawa University of Technology. He is tipped to take the position of new Governor of NTB.
Sitti Rohmi Djalilah is Rector of local Islamic university ‘Universitas Hamzanwadi’ in East Lombok, and also the older sister of current NTB Governor Zainul Majdi. She is likely to be appointed Vice Governor of NTB.
The “Zul-Rohmi” coalition is a new face in politics and has no previous experience in the election process, unlike the other three candidate pairings competing in the elections.
Analysts speculate that the surprise outcome was a result of voters choosing Sitti Rohmi because of her familial relationship with the current Governor, who is popular in the area of East Lombok, which has a large voting population.
The result has caused protest from supporters of the popular pairing of “Suhaili-Amin”, who were tipped to win the election.
Up until the start of the elections, M Suhaili FT was Regent (Bupati) of Central Lombok and DPD Chairman of Golkar NTB. Muhammad Amin was the Vice Governor of NTB and DPD Chairman of NasDem NTB.
Hundreds of supporters of the “Suhaili-Amin” coalition held a peaceful protest at the offices of the NTB Election Commission on 30 June calling for a recount, amidst allegations of vote tampering and hacking of the KPU website.
Singapore Airlines has announced that it will phase out Silk Air – the airline’s regional wing.
Silk Air will be merged with its parent brand after undergoing a major cabin upgrade, Singapore Airlines (SIA) announced on 18 May 2018.
Once the merger is successfully completed, Silk Air will no longer exist as an airline or brand. The airline has been flying since 1975.
In a press release, Singapore Airlines said that the company will invest more than S$100 million in a cabin revamp programme, starting in 2020, which will bring Silk Air aircraft up to Singapore Airlines standards.
The revamp includes installing new lie-flat seats in Business Class and the installation of seat-back in-flight entertainment systems in both Business Class and Economy Class.
This will ensure closer product and service consistency across the SIA Group’s full-service network, the company said.
The cabin upgrades are expected to start in 2020 “due to lead times required by seat suppliers, including to complete certification processes”, according to Singapore Airlines.
The merger will take place only after a sufficient number of aircraft have been fitted with the new cabin upgrades. Specific details will be announced progressively as the programme develops and timelines are finalised.
Silk Air operates a fleet of 11 Airbus A320 aircraft, 22 Boeing 737-800 and 737 MAX 8 aircraft. It is currently transitioning to an all-737 fleet, and serves 49 destinations in 16 countries.
The SIA Group is currently comprised of Singapore Airlines, Silk Air (its regional wing) and Scoot (the Group’s low cost carrier).
As it merges the two airlines, SIA said it will continue to transfer routes and aircraft across the group to use the most suitable vehicle for each route.
It has already transferred certain routes from Silk Air's network to Scoot, which can compete more effectively against regional budget carriers such as AirAsia.
The move comes as Singapore Airlines undertakes a three-year transformation programme designed to cut costs and boost revenue amid competition from Chinese and Middle Eastern rivals and low-cost carriers such as Air Asia.
Once the merger is complete, Singapore Airlines will remain as the Group’s full service airline and Scoot will operate as its budget airline.
This is not the first time that Singapore Airlines has merged its airlines. In 2017, SIA merged Scoot with Tigerair, using Tigerair’s air operator's certificate (AOC) but retaining the ‘Scoot’ brand.
The news is significant for Lombok, as Silk Air operates 4 direct flights per week between Lombok and Singapore.
A spokesman for Silk Air in Lombok said that, at this early stage, there was no news on whether the Lombok flights would be operated by Singapore Airlines or be transferred to Scoot after the merger.
Indonesia’s central bank, Bank Indonesia (BI), has announced that it will withdraw several banknotes from circulation this year.
The move is part of BI’s upgrading of Indonesian currency, following the launch of new banknotes with improved security features in 2016.
People holding the old bank notes have until 30 December 2018 to exchange the old money for new banknotes at BI branches throughout Indonesia.
BI announced in a press release last month that it would pull the following four banknotes, which were issued in 1998 and 1999, from circulation:
Rp 10,000 issued in 1998 featuring the picture of Cut Nyak Dien
Rp 20,000 issued in 1998 featuring the picture of Ki Hajar Dewantara; Rp 50,000 issued in 1999 featuring the picture of WR Supratman
Rp 100,000 issued in 1999 featuring the pictures of Soekarno and Hatta.
BI said that it was retiring the old bank notes because they lack security features that prevent money from being counterfeited.
On 19 December 2016, Bank Indonesia introduced seven new banknotes with enhanced security features and new designs of national heroes, traditional dances, and natural sites. with new portraits and enhanced security features, such as color-shifting metallic foil security patches, latent images of the BI logo, and tactile patterns.
More than 200 guests – many of them competitors in the Indonesia Dance Championships – attended a fabulous party to celebrate the official opening of White Elephant Restaurant at Puri Mas Spa Resort in Kerandangan. Guests enjoyed a buffet dinner in the beautiful gardens of the Resort and were entertained by live music and traditional dance performances.
Little Johnny comes down for breakfast. Since they live on a farm, his mother asks if he has done his chores yet.
“No, not yet,” little Johnny grumpily replies.
“Well, you can’t have any breakfast until you finish all your chores,” his mother replies.
Johnny mumbles annoyance and goes off sulking. He goes to feed the chickens and angrily kicks one of them.
He goes to feed the cows, and he kicks one of the cows.
He finishes feeding the pigs, and gives one of them a kick too.
Finally, he goes back into the kitchen and his mother gives him a bowl of dry cereal.
“How come I don’t get any eggs or bacon?” little Johnny complains. “Where’s the milk for my cereal?”
“Well,” his mother replies, “I saw you kick the chicken, so you don’t get any eggs for a week. I saw you kick a pig, so you don’t get any bacon for a week either. I also saw you kick the cow, so for the next week you aren’t getting any milk.”
Just then, his father comes down for breakfast and kicks the cat halfway across the room.
Little Johnny looks up at his mother with a wicked smile and says, “Are you going to tell him or should I?”
A guy goes to the supermarket and notices an attractive woman waving at him. She says hello.
He’s rather taken aback because he can’t place where he knows her from. So he says, “Do you know me?”
To which she replies, “I think you’re the father of one of my kids.”
Now his mind travels back to the only time he has ever been unfaithful to his wife and he says, “My God, are you the stripper from my bachelor party that I made love to on the pool table with all my buddies watching while your partner whipped my butt with wet celery?”
She looks into his eyes and says calmly, “No, I’m your son’s teacher.”