Balinese Coffee — the Special Blend

Posted by on 11:41 am in Indonesia, Spotlight | 2 comments

Balinese Coffee — the Special Blend

Balinese Coffee Hype The Most Expensive Balinese Coffee When I first heard about the Balinese coffee that costs 300 plus dollars a kilo, I was in disbelief. I was even more flabergasted when I found out why it costs so much: because a small animal called a luwak eats the beans and poops them out, which is supposed to make it taste better (not because of the poop but because of the digestion process). Fascinating. So while in Bali this spring, I decided to go to one of the many coffee plantations on the island that produce luwak coffee. The...

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Ancient and Modern Indonesia

Posted by on 8:21 am in Indonesia, Spotlight | 1 comment

Ancient and Modern Indonesia

Ancient and Modern Indonesia Ancient Indonesia at Borobudur Stepping out of the bus station, dazed by streaked sunlight and compressed heat, brings that familiar “pin-prick” feeling of unexpectedness behind my navel. I have come to this part of Indonesia for Borobudur; an ancient Buddhist temple; a tantric mandala; a symbol of the universe. Its grey bricks wait unassumingly in the distance, happily circumferenced by a UNESCO-friendly visitor’s park. The real beauty resides in the intrinsic Buddhist philosophy embedded in the monument...

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The Beiber and the Schoolgirls

Posted by on 6:26 pm in Indonesia, Spotlight | 1 comment

The Beiber and the Schoolgirls

My students were positioned in orderly rows, girls on one side and boys on the other. They blushed and covered their mouths with their sleeves as I attempted to coax them into conversation. They lowered their eyes, twiddled their hands behind their backs and clamped their mouths shut. There is no sound quite as gut wrenching for a teacher – particularly a fresh-off-the-boat volunteer teacher with no common language to resort to – as silence. Absolute. Silence. It was the first time I had taught in Indonesia and this was a devout Muslim school...

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Sold Out on Kuta Beach, Indonesia

Posted by on 10:16 pm in Indonesia, ITKT Blogs | 0 comments

“When I was in Bali, I couldn’t wait to get back to Jakarta so I could eat some bread,” my mom told me over the phone when I called from the Indonesian island of Bali. “Yeah, but that was 30 years ago, right?” I may have been naive in heading to Bali thinking of beautiful beaches, simple Indonesian food and locals hawking handmade crafts, cheap sundresses and crochet bikinis. Still, nothing could have prepared me for the onslaught of western civilisation that I faced upon arrival, driving through the island’s centre. While areas...

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Dogwalking in South Jakarta, Indonesia

Posted by on 5:38 am in Indonesia, ITKT Blogs | 0 comments

I had truly landed in expatriate paradise when I was picked up in Jakarta by a driver in an AC van. The vehicle sailed past past gleaming malls and street food stalls, back to my friend’s gated community. There, we were buzzed through by security men, who scanned the car with a weapons detector before allowing us to pass. Inside the compound were paved roads, enormous marble houses filled with Asian antiques, gyms and swimming pools: all evidence of resident foreigners living western lives in the capital of Indonesia. My friend and I...

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Eat, Pray, Love in Ubud Hanging Gardens

Posted by on 9:14 am in Announcements, Indonesia News | 0 comments

May 3, 2010 – In her bestselling book, Eat, Pray, Love, which has been made into a movie starring Julia Roberts and Javier Bardem due for release in August 2010, author Elizabeth Gilbert travels to Bali to find the balance between pleasure and devotion. Her journey of discovery ends in Ubud, home of Ubud Hanging Gardens, which is offering a special “Eat, Pray, Love” package for anyone who wishes to follow in Gilbert’s footsteps. At the end of a journey of self discovery which has taken her through Tuscany and the ashrams of India, Gilbert...

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Road to Bali, part 4

Posted by on 9:33 pm in Indonesia, Spotlight | 2 comments

Liquidy Temples, Butterflies My last Panorama tour begins at the gorgeous seaside temple of Tanah Lot, which was built in the 16th century on Bali’s southwestern coastline atop rocks pounded by waves. (Beach footgear is suggested.) This being a top visitor attraction tourists must run a gauntlet of peddlers down towards the ocean. There, a cave contains a supposedly mystical snake that can be seen – for an additional fee. Road to Bali, part 1, Road to Bali, part 2, Road to Bali part 3 Driving inland and north to Tanaban is Bali Butterfly...

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The Road to Bali, part 3

Posted by on 10:51 am in Indonesia, Spotlight | 0 comments

For The Road to Bali, part 1. For The Road to Bali, part 2 During most of my two weeks in Bali I stay at Parigata Villas Resort, which, as noted, is right near Sanur Beach, where Parigata has the Banjar Café, a seaside eatery and bar providing lounge chairs, sun umbrellas and towels for guests of Parigata’s three properties. The water is quite calm at Sanur, where there are many colorful traditional fishing boats and some noisy jet skis, a boardwalk past shops and restaurants, and but of course those unwelcome, omnipresent hawkers, disturbing...

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The Road to Bali, part 2

Posted by on 4:32 pm in Indonesia, Spotlight | 0 comments

For The Road to Bali, part 1 Bat Cave, Mother Temple Tour Bali is an exquisite isle, and my package includes three private trips that reveal its natural and cultural splendor. Panorama Tours provides a driver and English-speaking, sarong and sandal wearing guide named Made who drove me in a van to Goa Lowah, an astounding cave on the southeast coast so full of bats that I half-expect to see Bruce Wayne and Alfred there. Thousands of bats hang upside down inside the cavern, as others flutter about. The nearby temple features ornate statuary –...

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The Road to Bali, part 1

Posted by on 11:59 am in Indonesia, Spotlight | 0 comments

Karmic Cleansing Ceremony There are many tropical isles, but what makes Bali unique is its age-old Hindu culture and spirituality. Visitors to the “Morning of the World” can participate in a Melukat, or Balinese Karma Cleansing Ceremony. This purification process, presided over by a Pemangku (Hindu priest), seeks ablution for the body and soul and is offered to guests at the private temple of the Four Seasons at Sayan, located near the famed artists’ village of Ubud. During this rite of passage I’m barefoot and garbed in a Balinese sarong,...

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Beach Spa in Bali

Posted by on 7:00 am in Announcements, Indonesia News | 1 comment

Reflecting the strong Indian influence on Indonesian culture, The Beach Spa offers several Ayurvedic treatments. The signature massage, known as Abyhanga, is a rhythmic herbal oil massage intended to release impurities and toxins from the body. Circulation is stimulated whilst ensuring a deep calming experience for the body, mind and spirit. A deeper sense of relaxation comes from theShirodhara therapy, during which a thin and constant stream of oil is poured on to the center of the forehead said to be the third eye, acting as a gateway to...

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A Striking Chord in Ubud, Indonesia

Posted by on 9:28 pm in Indonesia, ITKT Blogs, Spotlight | 0 comments

A curious interest in traditional Bali and a passion for learning about world music led me to the tranquil town of Ubud. With Ubud’s pleasant climate due to its location just before the mountainous regions, and its welcoming locals, I felt a warmth for this place the moment I stepped foot into the town. A centre point for Balinese culture, music, arts and crafts, all of which offer inspiration to travelers from all walks of life. The lush green rice paddy fields are just one of the many beautiful views that Ubud offers its visitors. I...

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Deilmann Golf Around the World

Posted by on 9:00 am in England News, Golf and Gaming, Hong Kong News, India News, Indonesia News, Ireland News, Scotland News, Singapore Press Releases, Wales News | 0 comments

NEW YORK, Feb. 28, 2007 – Six ocean sailings on the MS Deutschland of Peter Deilmann Cruises feature golf theme cruises in 2007 with free air transportation and free transfers for golfers and non-golfers from the U.S. Golf courses played in these far-ranging cruises are in Scotland, England, Wales, Ireland, Canadian islands, Dubai, India, Thailand, Singapore, Bali and Hong Kong. At the same time, seven Deilmann river cruises on the inland waterways of the Rhine, Rhône, Seine, Danube and Elbe rivers offer golfers the opportunity to visit...

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Win a Trip Through Cathay Pacific

Posted by on 10:13 am in Announcements, Cambodia News, Indonesia News, Japan News, Malaysia News, Philippines News, Singapore Press Releases, Thailand News, Vietnam News | 0 comments

SAN FRANCISCO, FEBRUARY 8, 2007— Leading luxury international airline and Asia travel specialist, Cathay Pacific Airways, is giving away some great prizes including digital cameras and iPods during the month of February as part of its “Spot the Difference” sweepstakes. One lucky grand prize winner will win an All Asia Pass package for two, providing travelers an opportunity to visit up to 23 cities such as Hong Kong, Bali, Tokyo and more over 21 days. For a chance to win the All Asia Pass or one of the over 500 instant-win prizes, travelers...

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First St. Regis to Open in Bali

Posted by on 10:29 am in Announcements, Indonesia News | 0 comments

(Hong Kong – August 14, 2006) – Exclusive tropical living is about to go up several notches in Asia with the arrival of the region’s first St. Regis Resort & Residences in 2007. The St. Regis Resort & Residences, Bali will be the first resort property in Asia to be managed by the prestigious St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, as well as the first St. Regis branded luxury private villas in Asia for sale to private investors. St. Regis Hotels & Resorts are among the finest and most exclusive hotel and resort properties in the...

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