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GOLDVOICE DOGDAYOONS AFTERN R PARKOUOD SOULFOTORY THEFAC ISSUE 03 /APR 2014 FEB/MAR

T L SA I BR E D GA

oney ANWAR blackrebels KOKE’dAUNP JAHM

Photography -

Natasha


HARRISON ROACH PHOTOGRAPHY BY ANTHONY DODDS


KUBAN Magazine Sophie Digby, Agustina Ardie, Nigel Simmonds

VOLUME three feb/mar/april 2014

Marketing & Sales James Watling, Indrie Raranta Production Manager Evi Sri Rezeki Design Stuart Sullivan, Irawan Zuhri, Donny Bagus Accounting Julia Rulianti Distribution Made Marjana, Kadek Arthana, Putu Widi Susanto, Made Sutajaya, Didakus Nuba Publisher PT Luxury In Print Licence AHU/47558/AH/01/01/2011 Advertising Enquiries Tel: (+62 361) 766 539, 743 1804, 743 1805 www.kubanbali.com

Kassia Meador by Anthony Dodds.

info@kubanbali.com, sales@kubanbali.com

You know the drill. No part of this publication may be copied or reproduced electronically or otherwise without prior permission from the Publisher. Opinions expressed within this publication are those of the authors not the Publisher. The Publisher reserves the right to refuse advertising that does not comply with the magazine's design criteria. KUBAN will not be held responsible for copyright infringements on images supplied directly by advertisers and/or contributors. And that's that. Do it. Or don't do it.

KUBAN Magazine Kompleks Perkantoran Simpang Siur Square, Jl. Setia Budi, Kuta, Bali 80361, Indonesia PT Luxury In Print


06 IN Reflections on the endurance of cool.

14 In The Mix News from our favourite peeps, perps and pups.

22 Gear Stuff. Clobber. Schmatta. Bags. Strides. Eyes.

28 GoldVoice Bali hip-hop making waves.

32 Rebel Yell Rapping with the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club.

34 Oney Anwar Carving it up with an upand-coming wave rider.

40 Jah Joni Joni Anwar talks reggae, yoga, and keeping Bali clean.

44 Dog Day Afternoons Photos: Anthony Dodds.

The Z-Boys and the birth of modern skateboarding.

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56 Fashion New boots and panties.


in

N eve r Say D i e

I’ve been spending a fair bit of time in Kuta lately and passing the memorial to those who were slain in the 2002 bombings still sends me back to the day we awoke to find that our world on Bali had changed.

I know some of the innovators and imagineers – the stories of Mad Mark Baker and his mates, the Dogtown skate crew, who grew up on the “wrong” side of the tracks but who took the debris of the 20th century and turned it into art.

Things do change – and sometimes not for the better.

Those, who in the face of adversity and sometimes scorn, flipped the bird to the naysayers and followed a dream . . . for better or worse.

But while we remember the fallen we also realise that their sacrifice – indeed the lives they lived – would be belittled if life didn’t go on . . . if we dwelt on the negative to the detriment of the positive. And as I walk around Kuta today I am (for reasons that I don’t fully understand) encouraged, peaceful even. The place has its own “cool” and did not let it be robbed by some bigoted wankers who have been consigned to the pages of obscurity. I walk past surf shops and skate shops and pubs and clubs and restaurants . . . and people who look happy – people who are having the time of their lives, who are wide-eyed with the wonder of the place. I am thrown back to a time when the world looked on in wonder at a bunch of street kids in California who took the skateboarding world by the neck and gave it a good shake. I see in the surf and skate shops their progeny. The uber-cool boards that exist because these young people took surfing the firmament to a level that stunned, amazed, and changed forever what others considered “the norm”. I wonder if people are interested enough to want to know where things come from . . . and where they’re going.

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You can read about such people in the pages that follow. And you might ask yourself: “What can I do to break the shackles of normalcy in search of expressive freedom? Why is fear and loathing more current and more poignant these days than merely part of an old book title by Hunter S. Thompson?” Mad Mark and the Dogotwn Z-Boys, you see, will always be cool. They’ve gotten on in years – and have faced their fair share of trouble and strife, but they have left a legacy that cannot be denied – they’re still living the dream. Just as Jimmy and Janis and Stevie Ray and Jim Morrison who will always be with us . . . they made a difference. We can all make a difference. If we live in love and not in fear nothing and no one can steal the vibe. Nothing and no one can stifle the creative revolution. Remember those who have suffered but who are never, ever gone, and rejoice in the contribution they have made to our ability to make the world a better place. A.H.


100 The Gardens Andrea R. takes us on a tour of one of Bali's natural gems.

108 Advertiser Directory Find out what's where and who's who in the zoo.

64 Salt Brigade A group of friends on a mission to find some lesserknown surf spots.

92 Staying Power

110 Bob Koke

Top, middle, bottom accommodation for all wallet sizes in and around Kuta.

76 Parkour Tah Riq fills us in on confronting life's challenges through the emerging sport of parkour.

84 Factory Outlets Trendy clobber at bargain prices - shop 'til you drop.

88 Soul Food Our scout goes in search of excellent eats. Top: Kuta fashion by Angga Pratama and Ozlem Esen. Bottom: Surf 's up.

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Bali's first surfer . . . a love story.


The Waka Way To Explore Bali If you want to explore ancient rice fields cut out of steep Bali hills, admire the emerald green terraces as they step down over the less explored hills, then the WakaLandCruise is for you. Travel in legendary Land Cruiser comfort, be picked up directly from your hotel at 8.45am and return in awe of Bali’s landscape at 5pm – it’s the Waka way to explore Bali. However, if you feel at home on the water or would like to, WakaSailing – leaving Benoa Harbour to sail you across Badung Strait to Nusa Lembogan – might just be for you. Be welcomed aboard with coffee, tea and pastries as the Waka luxury catamaran sets sail for a day of sailing and activities such as village visits, snorkeling, lunch at the WakaBeachClub and a visit to the underground house. www.wakahotelsandresorts.com

Martini Massages and High Tea at Sofitel, Nusa Dua Unwind at the gorgeous poolside spa with Sofitel’s selection of Massage and Martini treatments, where you can sip away on your choice of Martini, made just the way you like it, and enjoy the relaxing kneading and stroking from highly skilled therapists. If you have not tried the cocktail/massage combo, you don’t know what you have missed . . . Total relaxation assured! Available daily from 11am-7pm. Bliss out at IDR250,000++. And, to spoil all the senses – join the High Tea at Le Bar afterwards from 3pm to 5pm. Succumb to a wide selection of Europe’s finest desserts, sweets and pastries accompanied by sparkling wine and a selection of barista coffee. Love thy body, love thy food, IDR199.000++ www.sofitelbalinusadua.com

3V Kerobokan Re-Opens Long awaited with the bad weather delaying renovations, 3V has finally re-opened in Kerobokan, offering fitness enthusiasts a full schedule of classes from zumba to body pump, power step to cardio. Add to that yoga, martial arts, the cycle studio and the running club, and if you are serious about getting or staying fit, now there are three locations in which to work up a sweat: Sunset, Canggu and now reopened with modern and expanded facilities – Kerobokan. www.3vfitness.com

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Ossotel Opens In Legian With a smart, modern facade of glass and steel, making its mark on Legian’s accommodation landscape on Padma Utara, the stylish and new Ossotel recently opened its doors. Providing a fresh look and appeal to the modern traveller, the 60-room hotel features a massive 88-metre pool – ideal for guests to chill out in; maintains a beach club of sun lounges on Legian Beach and tempts with its rustic-hip eatery Romeo, which also caters to the public. Organic in its conception and operation, stylish but not pretentious, the Ossotel caters to all the guests’ pleasures within a tropical design of simplicity and functionality. www.ossotel.com


Air Bali’s New Home Having officially moved its fleet from the Ngurah Rai airport to the heliport at Benoa and with more than 50 official landing sites across Bali, Lombok and Gilli Trawangan to choose from, Air Bali’s fleet of Bell 206 and 407 helicopters are the perfect way to explore Bali and beyond. Imagine flying over Lake Batur and Kintamani’s volcano, landing for a picnic lunch on a deserted beach, stopping off on Gili Trawangan as part of an island-hopping day of flying . . . or playing golf across the island all in one day. And for you surfers out there, getting dropped straight to internationally renowned surf break, G Land (Plengkung Beach), at Grajagan Bay. How about proposing or getting married in mid-air before being dropped to your luxury resort for the celebrations . . . Whatever tickles your fancy, getting there quickly, safely and in style is what Air Bali does. www.airbali.com

Harper’s First On Bali Recently opened, the first of the Aston Group’s brand new Harper Hotels on Bali. Located just a stroll from Kuta’s vibrant shopping, dining and nightlife scene, this fresh 149-room hotel offers all the modern comforts across four room types, with a massive swimming pool and ample sun lounges in the central courtyard to chill out in, while the pool-side eatery serves Illy coffee and hosts a scrumptious daily BBQ. Close to all the action and with all the usual standards, but starting from a budget-conscious IDR498.000 per night, it is sure that this bright new brand from Aston will hit the mark with travellers the world over. www.harperhotels.com

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MotionSk8 Celebrates B’day It has been 10 years since MotionSk8 first kicked off and their cool skate shop in Legian has been bringing the best in skate shoes, tracks, decks, caps, clothes, sunnies and other gear to skate enthusiasts for the past seven years, this not being enough, they opened their own indoor skate park in 2009, making MotionSk8 the crew to connect with if you like your board to have wheels! Drop in at their shop to score some celebratory birthday bargains and try all your new gear out at their indoor boarder’s paradise. If it’s cool and right for skaters, you’ll find it at MotionSk8. They also build ramps, should you need one of those… www.motionsk8.com

Sky Garden Reaches New Heights Long established as Kuta’s premier night venue, Sky Garden caters with its eight venues to just about any music and party-lover’s taste. Ranging from the Traveller’s VIP Lounge to the Rooftop Garden Lounge, the Romper Room to the Sky Dome, with an impressive line-up of DJs from near and far. On the back of presenting Australia’s number one DJ team, the Stafford Brothers, and the likes of Brooke Evans, Timmy Trumpet, the super hot Amely, Kronik and UK’s Organ Doners, the future line-up promises to be even better . . . think DJs Justin Michael, Stacie Todd, Ngelik, Ryeland, The Twins and DJ Diamond. Add to that regular drink promotions like Free Beer with the all-you-can-eat BBQ, cocktail nights, and fire dancers, you know you’ll have a blast. www.skygardenbali.com


Dine With Lions New at the Bali Zoo is the Wana restaurant and lounge bar. Perched high above the open-air lions’ den, it is a rustic, charismatic eatery serving a unique menu of fine Indonesian cuisine and western inspired delights, from breakfast to dinner, all with a distinct jungle feel. Getting in to the latest attraction at the Bali Zoo does not require a zoo entry fee and can make the perfect stop-in on a day’s travel north or south – whether for a breakfast with elephants, lunch overlooking the lions, or a magic dinner at night at the zoo. Dine with lions from 9am – 10pm daily. www.bali-zoo.com New Hotel On The Block . . . The latest addition to Kuta’s hotel landscape, the fourth location under the brand Sun Island, has just opened its doors giving travellers to the entertainment hub yet another great location to stay. With rooms ranging from deluxe to spacious suites, a third-floor infinity pool with bar, and a spacious bar and restaurant downstairs fronting Jalan Legian. Sun Island is also a great place to stop in for cocktails under the massive marquee or to chomp away on the daily BBQ served up with hip tunes and friendly smiles. Room rates start from just US$45 during their launch period, so try them out soon. Sun Island is conveniently located on the doorstep of Kuta’s nightclub strip, dining and shopping district. www.sunislandlegian.com

New O-Store, Kuta Oakley’s Christmas present was its brand new 120sqm store at Lippo Mall Kuta, Jalan Kartika Plaza Block G-32. The massive new store brings all the cool high-performance brand-wear together – from sunglasses, footwear and watches, to apparel, caps, t-shirts and accessories, with a big focus on customer experience. The grand open eyewear display allows customers to touch and feel new products and compare different frame materials to find what best suits. The new Oakley store is the first inside a shopping centre in Bali, so whether you are a surfer, golfer or weekend warrior, drop in and check it out. www.oakleyindonesia.com

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The Stones Turns One The first of the Marriott’s Autograph Collection hotels in Bali, the Stones Hotel is celebrating its first year of open doors. With a string of events to its name including the Fashion Festival Bali last year and a stack of compliments from early adopters, The Stones was also recognized for Best New Hotel and Executive Chef Christopher Smith claimed fifth place in the Chef Wars, giving recognition to the high standard at The Stones. With its iconic architecture, an eclectic sophistication and an urban-chic design with a beachy feel, the 308 room, 22 suite Stones right across from Kuta Beach is sure to indulge guests for many more years to come. Happy Birthday! www.thestoneshotelbali.com


Pyramid - Pumping 'Til Daybreak Having carved its place as the late-night dance venue in Kuta, Pyramid nightclub pumps wicked tunes from local and international DJs six days a week (Monday to Saturday) from midnight ‘til dawn. Hard to miss, the massive Pyramid nightclub with rooftop sphinx is located on Jalan Dewi Sri #33, and assures that your dancing shoes stay smoking all night long. With regular bottle promotions to fuel the night, table reservations available, and a huge dance floor with mega sound, Pyramid nightclub is the epitome of late night clubbing. www.pyramidclubbali.com Alang-Alang Village of Inspiration @ Beachwalk If you want to get a taste of the fashion, homewares, cloth designs and accessories of Bali, both modern and traditional, then a visit to the Alang-Alang Village of Inspiration is a must. Explore Bali’s first cloth museum – the brainchild of long-time cloth enthusiasts and passionate collectors, Jospehine Komara and Roni Siswandi. They have joined forces to bring more than 40 years of collecting traditional, ancient and unique cloths of Indonesia to the public. Featuring the prized antique batik collection at Museum Kain hosted by BIN House. There are also countless local and locally inspired foreign designers and brands spread out under the massive alang-alang roof of the third floor at Beachwalk retail hub on Jalan Pantai Kuta. Be inspired by the likes of Espen Salberg, Oka Diputra, Ali Charisma, Lily Jean, Natasha, Lulu Yasmine, shoe designer Niluh Djelantik, and handbag designer Johnny Ramli, and stacks more . . . including swimwear label Maidenlove and Uluwatu Hand Made Balinese Lace – one of the island’s longest established clothing and homeware labels. www.beachwalkbali.com Bali’s Inaugural Live Festival Spreading its motto of “Keep the Music Playing” across the island, Bali’s inaugural Live Festival promises to get folks jazzing, jiving and dancing away over six days with the likes of Incognito; Tania Maria; Omar; Estaire Godinez; Stokley from Mint Condition; Rio Sidik Quartet; Nita Aartsen; Israel Varela and Yeppy Romero; Jim Larkin & the Saucy Soul Band; Nancy Ponto; Balawan; and a headline appearance by Earth, Wind & Fire Experience . . . playing at venues from Mozaic Beach Club to Jimbaran’s Sundara; Ubud’s Jazz Club to Beachwalk; and the Nusa Dua Beach Hotel to le Meredien. For full programme details and tickets go to: www.balilivefestival.com

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Heavenly Wellness Opens at Westin, Nusa Dua Taking holistic wellness to unparalleled heights, the new Heavenly Wellness Spa in the Westin Resort at Nusa Dua has opened its doors, providing resort and walk-in guests with a vast menu of wellness and beauty treatments. . . his and hers thermal facilities, hydro-pools, salt-wall saunas and steam rooms as well as a relaxation lounge serving elixirs and super-food snacks. A regular events calendar brimming with activities ranging from meditation, yoga, bangau putih and Balinese rituals, to a series of talks on wellness, mediation, relationships and happiness by the spa’s own Buddhist nun ambassador make the Heavenly Spa by Westin a truly special place. Its design combines ultra modern interiors with traditional influences ensuring unique relaxation and wellness experiences. Open from 6am until midnight, seven days a week, with ample parking available. www.heavenlyspabali.com

101 Movie Nights and Pool Parties If you’re looking for some relaxing outings with friends or to chill before hitting the clubbing scene, then drop in at the 101 Hotel Kuta on Jalan Legian, only a stroll from Kuta’s nightlife happenings. The 101 hosts movie nights four times per week (Mon, Tues, Thurs & Sat) and sunset Sky Pool Parties with live DJ and cocktail promotions three times per week (Wed, Fri & Sun) – making them the perfect outing or first step to lead into a night of fun. The 101 hotel offers modern designed rooms with all the luxuries at affordable prices - right in the heart of Kuta, so if you want to be right where the action is and get extra discounts, then check out the 101, whether for your next holiday or just for a weekend in town. Tel: 0361 300 1101 www.the101bali.com


AIRPORT TRANSFERS - PRIVATE TOURS - GOLF TRANSFERS GILI TRAWANGAN AND LOMBOK TRANSFERS - VOLCANO & COASTLINE SKY TOURS - AERIAL FILMING - MEDICAL EVACUATIONS Phone: +62 361 767466, +62 361 766582 Email: sales@airbali.com


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gear

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The Soft Bobber by Deus Ex Machina POA

Deus Ex Machina Stevie Dobby Washed Denim IDR750.000

Deus Ex Machina Belbin Bjorn IDR650.000

Deus Ex Machina Indigo Myrle IDR.400,000

Deus Leather Gloves IDR1.100.000 www.deuscustoms.com

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gear

Emerica - Reynolds Low black/white IDR795.000

Emerica - Provost black/green IDR699.000

Emerica - Wino Black/assorted colours IDR475.000 All available at MotionSk8 www.motionsk8.com

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Motion OG Red Sketeboard Deck IDR420.000

Motion Brewsky Sketeboard Deck IDR420.000

Motion Hiu Sketeboard Deck IDR420.000

Motion The Yogi Sketeboard Deck IDR450.000 www.motionsk8.com

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gear

Bamboo Blonde Wasterland Jumpsuit IDR620.000 Felt Floppy Hat IDR190.000 Maldives Wedges IDR590.000

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Seafolly - Madagascar IDR700.000

Seafolly - Mauritius IDR700.000

Seafolly - Tanzania IDR700.000

Seafolly - Zanzibar IDR700.000

Seafolly - Mambasa IDR700.000

Seafolly - Loango IDR700.000

www.universo.co.id

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LOCAL HEROES

gol dv oi ce

goldvoice is a no-holds-barred hip-hop outfit that hails from bali and has been making noise on the indonesian scene. their recent video My homies – which hones in on the corruption and injustices of government politics – has gained more than 100,000 views. here we check in with tyo a.k.a big t black, on what the crew is all about. words: KA MAU IMAGES: ANTHONY DODDS

Clockwise from above: Dwix, Wira Sanjaya, Tyo Big T Black, Oddy Girindra, Juik Cobra, Rovinus Yoseph.

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LOCAL HEROES Who are the members of GoldVoice?
 Me, Tyo . . . Big T Black, Dwik NK13, Oddy, Wira, Rovy, and DJ Juix Cobra. How did you guys come together?
 We came together in 2009 when we would rap at NK13 parties. We called ourselves Black Masker Crew back then. We met Dwik there and he had good rhymes, so we started hanging out and talking about things – life, politics and stuff. Then we decided to make a new crew together, with a new mission, so we changed our name to GoldVoice. DJ Juix Cobra joined us too. We all have different personalities, but our mission is the same. Hip-hop music is the minority music in Indonesia, but we want to make it bigger. We believe it can be big here. What do you guys rap about?
 Our lyrics speak about what goes on in our lives and in our country. Indonesia has a lot of issues to speak about – social issues, political issues, cool shit, stupid shit . . . we talk about whatever we feel. Who are your influences? Wu Tang Clan, Onyx, Jedi Mind Tricks, Immortal Technique, Army of the Pharaohs. Why did you all choose hip-hop culture as your expression rather than rock or reggae? Because hip-hop culture is what is in our hearts, it’s what has given us inspiration and let our imagination grow. What projects do you have? Our main project is just that the community knows what we are talking about with hip-hop music and can hear it all as a part music in Indonesia, Asia and the world. You guys recently went on tour in Java, how was that? It was a great experience. We got a great response and much respect in Java. They appreciated that we were very different from a lot of the rappers there, so we were able to be influential to them. There are many young rappers in Bali now. What advice do you have for them? We have a lot of respect for the younger rappers. We enjoy seeing them perform and get more involved with rapping. It’s good and interesting because hip-hop in Bali has been growing for a long time (mostly with b-boys), but just now there are many rappers. It’s good that people like Ka Mau from USA and Jack from England moved here and help the scene . . . and all friends from everywhere who come to Bali and support hip-hop. My advice to the young rappers is to keep progressing with your lyrics and creativity. Be smart when you make your raps and your songs. Peace from GoldVoice. Homies.

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Resor t Accommodation t +62 361 301 8888

Events

Weddings

Night Surfing

Komune ResoRt & Beach cluB Jl. Pantai Keramas, Keramas, Bali, Indonesia e info.bali@komuneresorts.com W www.komuneresorts.com/keramasbali


in with the tide

Words: Danziel Carre Photos: jason reposar

rebelyell

BRMC: L-R Robert Been, Peter Hayes, Leah Shapiro.

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Hailing from San Francisco, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club has been consistently pleasing music lovers for well over a decade. Recently dropping into Bali on tour to give our island a good ol’ fashion dose of some real, no B.S. rock & roll, we caught up with the band to get a glimpse of what drives them and their music . . . Where did the name BRMC come from? Have you always been rebels? It was the name of Marlon Brando’s motorcycle gang in the movie The Wild One. His rival gang in the movie was called The Beatles and obviously that name was already taken. Can’t say that we are really rebels or ever have been . . . we just play music and try to give a shit. If that’s rebellious, then great. From The Beatles to Bob Marley to the early days of hip-hop, music has always been something of a revolutionary force and voice for the rebels of society. What do you think is happening in the world these days that is most worthy of rebelling against, and how do you guys see yourselves as holding any responsibility for voicing those changes you feel need to take place? We think it’s important to try to live the changes not just voice the changes. Pointing the finger at a problem doesn’t actually help that much unless you are willing to take responsibility for your part in it. As for what’s happening in the world these days, all the same needs for rebellion and change exist as they always have. Many of us have the ability to make the choice to live our lives in rebellion. We shouldn’t wait for one voice or person to remind us what’s important and how to act against injustices. Every day is an opportunity to make decisions that matter – they may seem really small, but they all add up. What is rock & roll to you? It’s music with a soul; its beauty is in the imperfections, not the perfectly edited, perfectly mixed and perfect sounding corporate crap. Who are your biggest musical influences? Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Sam Cooke, Edith Piaf, Patti Smith . . . the list goes on and on. Not sure we could follow in any of their footsteps but hopefully we can add respectfully to what these great musicians have already done.

What are some of your most memorable touring experiences? Honestly don’t know where to begin with this. There are lots of memorable ones and at the same time it can all become quite blurry as well. What do you guys do in your downtime? You have any unusual hobbies people wouldn’t guess – or just fullon into the sex, drugs, and rock & roll lifestyle? Leah recently took up knitting. What inspires you guys? (Music-wise and non-music-wise). The belief that people care despite the amount of desperation that’s constantly fed to us – we all have more in common than what we are taught to believe. It’s inspiring finding the connections we all have to each other. What has your been favorite thing about Bali? The day at the beach and how everybody came together to make the show happen. Did you guys get to rip around the island on scooters, recapturing that rebellious biker feeling? Unfortunately not, we only had one day off so we didn’t have enough time to rent scooters, but next time we definitely will. There is nothing wrong with scooters, or mopeds for that matter. Anything that has two wheels is better than four. What message do you wish to impart through your music? How do you want to influence and impact others through your art? We hope it leaves people feeling connected. We’re not alone and we all need to feel that. This is why we don’t like the term rock star – it implies that there is a separation between the music and the listener. Our hope is that the music and the listener are one and treated with the same respect.

What do you find most fulfilling about your path? Being able to play music and share it with everyone. Did you always dream of being a rock star, touring the world? Playing music and traveling, absolutely. However, rock stardom is not something we want anything to do with.

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interview

lorca lueras talks about raw talent, opportunity, and aspiration with indonesian surfer oney anwar.

World Tour potential. The next big thing. The Chosen One. Those are bold statements indeed. However you cut it, the fact is that Indonesia has high hopes that 19-year-old Oney Anwar will make history and qualify as Indonesia’s first surfer to make the World Championship Tour. Coming up from a humble beachside family of 12 brothers and sisters in Lakey Peak, Sumbawa, two islands east of Bali, Oney was surfing beyond his years soon after he was able to stand on a board. Surfing waves came naturally to Oney and in a short time the soft-spoken kid from Lakey Peak was not just riding the best waves in the world in his backyard, he was landing the most complex surfing tricks and pulling into big barrels with ease . . . turning heads on everyone around. In Bali Oney netted wins in every major junior event around and it was evident he possessed a rare natural talent for surfing. One day after winning another junior event his sponsor Rip Curl pulled the trigger and popped the question: “Do you want to take this to the next level?” It is a “Yes!” answer Oney has never regretted, an answer that brought him to Australia’s Gold Coast on a paid-infull high school education and intense surfing training program covered by Rip Curl to set the wheels in motion towards a World Championship Tour campaign. Only 32 surfers in the world make this top-level tour through a World Qualifying Series in several countries and there is a lot invested in Oney to make it happen. KUBAN caught up with Oney in Australia, where he was just back from Brazil and Bali and on his way to surf in Hawaii, where he took a minute to break down how life qualifying for the World Tour is. Right now you’re ranked #125 in the world (out of 700+), how has your year on tour been? I was ranked 105th but I missed the prime Hawaii contests this year because I went to the World Pro Junior championships

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in Brazil for my last year as a junior. It was a hard decision. I got 3rd in France at a five-star pro event that pushed me up to 105th on the ranking and because I missed Hawaii my ranking dropped. But I got 5th in the World Pro Juniors Championships, the furthest an Indonesian surfer has ever made it. What is the hold up for Indonesians to get on the world tour? We know the visas to travel are a big hassle to get, but is there anything else you feel that holds Indonesians back? I think culture shock. Indonesians don’t travel as much as other people do. On the road the food is different, the boards you ride are different, the waves are different, a lot of times you’re wearing a wetsuit in cold water, a lot of things that Indonesians are not used to. I think Indonesians need to travel more, not just go one month and come back, they need to go somewhere like Australia, put in time, waking up early and putting a wet wetuit on and surfing in cold water. They need to compete in as many surf contests as possible and train more too. And most of all, learning more competition strategy. How do the Indonesian surfers compare on the international level? I think in competition the Indonesian surfers became a lot stronger this year. Before we were so mellow and nice and got tricked by foreigners in competitions. But this year we had the Oakley Pro Bali World Championship Tour contest at Keramas and everyone watched it really closely and learned from it and now all the Indonesian guys know how to compete better. Usually in Indonesia everybody is friendly and sharing, they look after you like a brother, like if we have food and you didn’t eat yet, we would share it, or in a contest, go ahead, take this wave. But during a contest when you’re out in the water, there are no more friends. That’s one of the biggest things


Rising star.

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interview

Oney, by Mamat.

I learned in Australia, to be aggressive in contests. You can’t share waves in a contest. It’s a competitive sport, when the waves come you can’t share. And after the Oakley Pro Bali the surfers here saw exactly how it is. After the heat is over then you can be friends again. For sure. If you don’t surf smart, you’re going to lose. And in your case that could be in a different country and mean an expensive loss. It seems you’ve learned a lot living in Australia, how did you end up going to school there? Rip Curl sponsored me and helped me move to Bali with photographer Nate Lawrence to start doing contests there. I started winning some and then Rip Curl came to me and said, “Do you want to take this to the next level?” And I said, “What do you mean the next level?” And they said, “Going to High School in Australia and training there for surfing. I thought about it for while and said, “Yes, I’ll go to Australia.” And I loved it. You know, a lot of kids here in Indonesia have an opportunity to do this, but nobody knew it was going to come or to who, nobody expected it, and I didn’t know either. I just did the right thing, just go surfing every day, didn’t go party, the sport was different to me and the opportunity came and I made the right decision.

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How was school in Australia? Australia is great because the opportunity here is so much greater at my age for surfing. Going to school I made a lot of new friends and I really enjoyed it. I was also invited to surf on my school’s (Palm Beach Currumbin High School) surf team and in the local Boardriders club. I won my school’s Sportsman of the Year Award three years in a row from 2010-2013 and I even got a scholarship, which rarely happens for Indonesians going to school in Australia. Sometimes it was difficult, like guys from New South Wales would make comments about why I was on the school surf team because I wasn’t Australian but our coach would say, “Don’t worry about it, use that to make you want to surf harder,” and I did and ended up using it to my advantage. And now the Gold Coast is your home? Yeah it’s my home. I’m trying to get my permanent residence, it’s pretty hard though but hopefully I’ll get it. At my age now for surfing it’s the best place to be. Find out more about Oney Anwar is his upcoming documentary “Chasing the Dream” out this year and also at www.ripcurl.com


the beautiful atmosphere of bali Poppies Lane II Kuta Beach Bali Indonesia PO.BOX 80361 Phone: +62361758331,

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local heroes

For reggae singer Joni Agung and his Double T band, the music is the message and the message is the music.

PHOTO: LUCKY 8 WORDS: STEPHANIE MEE

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Joni, how far back do your reggae roots go?

At that time were you writing your own songs?

I wasn’t always a musician. When I was a kid, my father bought me a guitar, but I just chucked it away because I was more interested in just playing in the waves and sand. My father was a Balinese dancer in Australia, and when he came back from Australia after I finished high school, he was very surprised to see me on the stage.

No, not yet. We didn’t have time to do original songs because our heads were too much into partying at night. You know how musicians are, right? We were so lazy to write the songs. At that time in Jakarta there were reggae bands doing their own original lyrics, but we were just giving the audiences what they wanted, and people wanted No Woman No Cry and that kind of stuff.

Do you remember the first time you heard reggae music? Yes, it was around 1980. My father loved to go overseas, and one time he brought me back a cassette tape. He said, “listen to this” and

So how did the reggae scene in Bali progress?

At that time I played rock ’n’ roll, so I wasn’t that interested in reggae, but I still kept listening to the tape. Then I met a guy from the Netherlands, originally from Suriname, and he said: “Listen to the music and listen to the message, because reggae is the music within the message and the message within the music.” That resonated with me because my family and I have always been very spiritual.

Around that time, I had a friend who had a contract for a discotheque called Apache Bar. I really encouraged him to support reggae, but he didn’t agree that you could be successful doing reggae all the time. He wanted to do reggae one night a week, one night for rock, one night for blues, and so on. We started doing reggae just two times a week, and on those nights the place was full every time. And on the other days, not so many people came. That’s when my friend started to realise that we could do reggae all the time. He changed the name to Apache Reggae Bar, and it’s still reggae every night to this day. I still play there every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

I thought, “What’s this?” I remember the album was called Kaya, and the only song that stuck in my head was No Woman No Cry. The other songs I didn’t understand.

After that I decided to make my own band and we agreed to pump reggae in Bali. We started playing in ’87. Was reggae popular in Bali at that time? Not really. There was one reggae band called Legend. They were friends of mine but a bit older, and they played everywhere. But reggae was still not really popular. People thought, “what is this?” At that time head-banging was very popular in Bali, and only my friends and I were playing reggae. But we still managed to play at many rock concerts. I’m very lucky the audience didn’t throw stones at me. They only just laughed and said, “what kind of music are you playing?” So what made you want to keep going if people were laughing at you? Because when you love something and feel good about something, you don’t have to travel far from that. I made a commitment with my friends that we were going to keep reggae alive in Bali. I thought that even if I was not a great musician or songwriter, at least I could keep the music alive and keep on dreaming.

Well, I remember when we first began to play reggae, nobody really knew what the music was all about. Then around 1990, reggae became really big all over the world. Soon after that we started to see the interest pick up and big reggae stars started coming to Bali.

Since then, the music has changed quite a bit. Now people are going back to the old styles, but combining them with new things. For example, you see a mix of reggae and ska and the rock steady thing. Artists today are mixing together different forms of music to make new sounds. This is great, because you can play reggae in any style as long as you don’t lose the message. Do you have a favourite place to perform in Bali? I try to make every place I go my favourite. I’m learning to be more like traditional Balinese artists – even if they dance in the temple, a small alleyway, the rice field, they just dance like no one is watching and do everything for the gods. Also, I’ve seen a lot of audiences and know that each one is unique in its own way. For example, I’ve played huge reggae festivals before with hundreds of people and many bands, but I’ve also played for just one person, and both experiences are good in their own way.

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local heroes For example, after the bomb blast in 2002, no one was going to Legian Street, but I still came to Apache because we just wanted to play and make everyone wake up. The whole night, only one Japanese guy was in the bar, and he had one beer and one Coca Cola and then he slept on the bar. But I just played anyway. Your band is unique in that you actually make songs in Balinese. What made you decide to do that? The first time I heard reggae I didn’t really understand English, but I did love the music. You know Jamaicans speak in patois, not only English. Also there is French reggae, German reggae and Japanese reggae. We decided to sing in Balinese because we believe in the concept that reggae is the music in the message and the message in the music. We were not so worried that non-Balinese people wouldn’t understand it, because we figured that if they were curious they would ask. When you listen to reggae from Jamaica, a lot of people sing about oppression, freedom from slavery and social issues. What about your songs? For me, I write songs to help people wake up and realise themselves, where they live, what they give back to the earth and to other people. Not too much about sadness. It’s more about trying to smile and be happy and have good energy. When Bob Marley was around, he wrote and sang about what he saw around him, but we don’t really have those same issues here in Bali. We have a good place here. Of course, some songs are a little bit critical of the government, but in a good way. I don’t like to speak straight out; I prefer to use irony. Then if people listen to the music and the lyrics and they really like it, they will get it. What’s the most important message in your music? Try to give love to everyone. We are one blood and we are sisters and brothers. Learn to give, because it’s not easy. Sometimes the thing you give must be the thing you love, and sometimes that’s hard to let go. So my message is to learn to give. You have such a wide fan base to deliver your message to. What’s it like being famous in Bali? Nah - I don’t think I’m famous. Some people say you have to sell this, do this, but that’s not the point for me. Being famous was never our goal. You know we started reggae in Bali because we wanted people to be aware about the music, but it’s more about what we have and what we share with people. For example, I teach yoga on the beach every morning, and everyone is welcome to join for free. Some people ask me why I don’t take any money from people, but that’s not the point. I’m just an ordinary person like everyone else. I just love to make music, do yoga and make friends all over the island. So what’s a typical day like for you? Get up, do yoga, sometimes go fishing. Sometimes I swim in the ocean;

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sometimes I nap on the beach. Then I go back home and chat with the family. Around noon I come back to the beach to clean the sand. The way I see it, cleaning this space is like cleaning my body and my mind. Some people say, “Keep Bali clean”, but then they cut down the trees. They just act like that in front of the camera or yap on the TV, but I don’t think that’s right. Clean your own neighbourhood first. At first people were laughing at me because I’m a Balinese musician cleaning up the sand, but now they just follow. It’s nice to see the area clean, you know? You must have witnessed many changes in Bali over the years, an increase in pollution being just one of them. Are there any other changes that stand out for you? Well, I remember I used to come to the beach and go diving for shells, clean the shells and then sell them to tourists on the beach. My friends and I also used to make replicas of traditional boats out of wood and sell those. It was easy to make money in those days, but not so much now. Now you have big tour and taxi companies, and the people who come here think that when they use them, they are helping out the people of Bali, but really they don’t know or realise where the money goes. Usually it goes back to Jakarta or overseas and not to the people here. That’s what I’m fighting for. I tell my friends to make good prices for tourists, and try to be good friends with everyone, smile and be friendly not because they want to make money, but because it comes from their heart. Then people will want to support the Balinese community. What can we expect from Joni Agung and the Double T Band in the future? We’ve already sent our new album off to Jakarta, so that will be out on CD soon. This will be our fourth album and it’s the first album where we mix Balinese, English and Indonesian. We’ve put in a little bit of what everyone will like. I think before we were a bit selfish, so now it’s time for us to give more of what people want. As for me, I just want to stay and live strong, continue doing yoga and continue to spread the message through music. I’ll be doing reggae until I cannot sing any more, because really there is no retiring from what you love in life. Maybe in 20 years if I cannot stay out late, I’ll play early. If I cannot play seven days a week, I’ll play just two or three times a week or even once a week. But really, I play all the time. Even if I’m just meeting friends we sing and play guitar together just because we love it. Final words? Whatever happens in the future, one thing I’m not worried about is Balinese people losing our culture and religion, because our culture is strong like a giant tree root. We came across from Java in the 13th and 14th centuries because we wanted to preserve our religion, so we will never lose that. No matter what kind of music we play or how many big companies come in, nobody has to worry about the Balinese because we are strong.


KUBAN ONLINE

K-POD We’re doing our best to distract you from Facebook on your mobile with the K-Pod app for apple iOS. Rejoice! Let us guide you to the best bars, spas, clubs, shops and hotel pads in deconstructed style. K-Pod is the first Kuta and Tuban specific app available for Apple iOS. Coming soon.


retro grades

kuban revisits the birth of skate cool.

words by drew corridore.

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Tony Alva glides the light. Photo: Pat Darrin. Sony Pictures Classics 2001.

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retro grades

“It’s amazing what can happen when you take a bunch of kids off the streets and give them something good to do.” Mark Baker takes flight.

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In the 1970s a group of young people from California turned the world, quite literally, upside down. The Dogtown Z-Boys took skateboarding to levels previously unseen and unheard of – they gave birth to skateboarding as we know it today; they were both bad and radical. Some said they were true pioneers, born of strange times. “Two hundred years of American technology unwittingly created a massive cement playground of unlimited potential . . . but it was the minds of 11-year-olds that could see that potential.” - Craig Stecyk 1975 The ride began when Stecyk with friends Jeff Ho and Skip Engblom opened Jeff Ho Surf boards and Zephyr Productions on the south side of Santa Monica in 1971, close to a notoriously dangerous surf break that ran through a dilapidated amusement park. The locals called the place Dogtown – an area comprising the location of the surf shop, Venice Beach and Ocean Park. Skip Engblom says, “it was dirty, it was filthy, it was . . . paradise.” Pacific Ocean Park (POP) was abandoned and busted. A rickety pier and shonky wooden pilings stood as sentinels to a bygone age of exuberance and innocence. But now it was a testament to decay and deterioration of fortune. On its day, though, the break was killer. . . and could easily kill you if you made one mistake too many. It was surfing an obstacle course of seen and unseen pieces of park just waiting to revenge its slide into senility. The Dogtown locals owned it and each and every one of them had to earn their place in the lineup. No outsiders. No fucking around. They were bad boys prepared to fight for their turf. And they loved to surf. As Dogtown local, Nathan Pratt reflects: “This is not the beach that people came to vacation at. “Surfing (in those days) was outcast, period, surfing (Venice) was anti-social . . .” The surf shop quickly attracted a gaggle of badass young surfers and the Zephyr surf team was born. The Dogtown youngsters took the talents that they had honed at POP on tour. “Getting sponsored by the Zephyr team as a kid was Nirvana,” says Nathan Pratt, “it was lowbrow, wild and screw you . . .” Or as team member, Jim Muir, puts it: “If you were wearing the navy blue Zephyr shirt, you were ‘the shit’ in the neighbourhood.” But what to do when the surf was blown out? The Zephyr crew took to surfing’s land-based equivalent – skateboarding. But in those days things were pretty different. They basically had to carve a piece of wood into roughly the shape of a surf board, adulterate a set of roller skates and attach the clay-wheeled trucks to the board . . . Riding these vehicles was almost as dangerous as surfing POP because at the slightest point of resistance – a crack in the road, for instance – the wheels would lock and the rider would, at first, defy gravity . . . and then not.

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retro grades

At the same time a young Hawaiian surfer, Larry Bertlemann, was making an impact on the sport with his hunkered-down style and ‘feeling’ the wave with his hands. The Zephyr crew thought that was pretty cool . . . and started to emulate Bertlemann on the asphalt – developing what they called “the bert” whereby they used their hands to perform pivoting turns while crouching lower than anyone had previously while surfing on land. Zephyr member, Jay Adams, says: “He put his hands on the wave – he was the first surfer I remember doing that – so we started copying that on the ground.” It was the style that was to become the Z-boys trademark. And would unleash a revolution that lasts to the present day. And in 1972 surfer, Frank Nasworthy, created another revolution – the Cadillac urethane wheel for skateboards, which allowed the Z-Boys to take their art to new heights. What also allowed the Zephyr crew to grow and refine the way they skated was the urban environment – from the hill that led from the surf shop to the sea, to a number of schools in the area that had sculpted asphalt banks built to support the levelling of sprawling playgrounds. Nathan Pratt says: “We had the surf/skate style because we had the (concrete) waves to ride it on.” Skateboarding legend Dave “Hackman” Hackett’s story part one: “I grew up in Malibu, from the time I was a one year old. I attended Webster elementary then Malibu Park Jr. High School along with Sean Penn, Rob Lowe and Charlie Sheen and a bunch of other kids of movie stars like Chad McQueen, and David and Kevin Wilson. At first I thought I was going to be an actor but I was way too radical, rude and obnoxious to follow direction or read for an interview, so I just followed my heart and that told me to keep riding my skateboard and making art – two things nobody can tell me to do, or not to do, or how to do it. Total freedom of expression and radicalism! “The Dogtown thing started for me when I met Jay Adams and Tony Alva and Wentzle Ruml while riding the banks at Kenter, Paul Revere, and Bellagio Elementary Schools. The year was 1973, I was 13 and just switched from clay wheels to riding my first set of Cadillac urethane wheels on those banks and basically trying to surf the concrete like Larry Bertlemann did in the water.” Wentzle Ruml says: “We all possessed a surf style . . . there was no one in our group who wasn’t fluent.” Style was everything. “Skaters by their very nature are urban guerrillas: they make everyday use of the useless artefacts of the technological burden and employ the handiwork of the government/corporate structure in a thousand ways that the original architects could never dream of.” - Craig Stecyk 1976 – around the time he started publishing a series of what were to become known as Dogtown articles in SkateBoarder magazine.

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“all the girls hated that i skated like a GUY� - peggy oki, femme z-boy.

Photo by: Pat Darrin. Sony Pictures Classics 2001.

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retro grades

This page: Baker drops in. Tracing paper: Jay Adams by JASON REPOSAR.

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And during the 1970s another phenomenon occurred to advance the art of skateboarding . . . the worst drought California had ever experienced. As the Stacy Peralta-produced 2001 documentary Dogtown and Z-boys says: “California’s drought served as a midwife to the skateboard revolution as hundreds of swimming pools across the Los Angeles basin were left empty and unused.” Jay Adams says: “Once pool riding came in, that’s all we wanted to do.” . . . and Dave Hackman: “Like any peer group you become part of, you shared things in common. For me and the DT crew, we lived for finding, draining and riding empty swimming pools and creating a new way to ride them.” On the other side of the Atlantic another skater was paying close attention. “Mad” Mark Baker (now a resident of Bali and of Townhouse fame) was making waves of his own on the skating scene in his native England and in Europe. “We used to see all the amazing pictures of the Dogtown crew in SkateBoarder magazine in the mid-70s . . . the lovely Californian weather, and these radical riders, while we were stuck in rainy old Britain,” Mark says. “But where I’m from, in Brighton – which in many ways was similar to Dogtown – me and my crew were doing some pretty radical stuff too . . . and taking a lot of inspiration from the articles we read about the Z-Boys. “The influence these guys had on an entire generation – the surf-skate lifestyle . . . they were basically a bunch of street kids who changed their own lives and changed the lives of many, many others throughout the world. It’s amazing what can happen when you take a bunch of kids like us off the streets and give them something good to do.” Around 1978/79 Mark hooked up with one of the original Z-boys, Tony Alva, who was on a competition tour of England and Europe. The two of them struck up an immediate friendship. “Tony was the best skater and the best promoter of himself and the others – he was the best over there and I was the best on my side of The Pond and we went on tour together . . . there were interviews, television, movies, the whole thing, which was pitched as “Mad Mark meets the Mad Dog” . . . we were rock stars man, it was insane, as if skateboarding was the biggest thing in the world.” Mark gravitated to California where he spent three years or so skating with the Dogtown crew. And the rest, as they say, is history. From his perch at the Townhouse in Seminyak Mad Mark Baker adds a poignant footnote to the Dogtown story: “Jay Adams, who was the gnarliest, grindiest Z-Boy skater, was recently admitted to the skating Hall of Fame – he sat and watched the whole thing upstairs on TV while thousands of people were screaming for him . . . he couldn’t give a fuck.”

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retro grades

Dave “Hackman” Hackett part two . . .

being able to ride for almost two years . . . that sucked!

What was the dream in the early years?

You have played a big part in the professionalisation and marketing of the sport . . . how and why did you get into that?

We all shared the dream of getting paid to do what we loved doing. Like the first group of pro surfers back in 1974 – Shaun Thompson, Wayne “Rabbit” Bartholomew, Mark Richards . . . we did it because we loved it, but at the same time we believed it would one day be a professional sport. I was able to be the first pro rider for Tony Alva’s company, Alva Skates, and got to ride with other legendary rippers like Steve Alba and of course Mark Baker – who was the gnarliest rider in all of Europe in the 1970s. Did skateboarding change your life? Yes, in many, many ways. Skateboarding saved my life by allowing me an outlet for extreme radical and dangerous physical expression, and it has also almost killed me many times through gnarly injuries – all of which made me a stronger person in every way. What role did evolving skate technology play in the success the skaters of the time had . . . and the radicalisation of the sport? New skate technology has always played a huge part in the advancement of the sport/art of riding a skateboard and continues to do so today. In the 1970s it was primarily the introduction of the urethane wheel and the multiple laminated Canadian hard rock maple decks. The 1980s, say, more of the same and the huge introduction of knee sliding and pads that could knee slide easier. Every decade has contributed to the advancement and it’s awesome to be part of it all. Did you play a part in reinventing the skateboard? I’m not so sure I can claim that I reinvented the skateboard in any way. But I have over the years designed and marketed some of the top-selling decks in the industry, such as my Skull Skates Iron Cross and Street Sickle as well as my Surfskater deck on Deathbox Skateboards. What are your fondest memories of the late ’70s and early ’80s with your crew? I’ve always been a contest skater, so for me, competing in, and winning, the few events I did and of course all the crazy demos and other trips we made around the world to help spread the stoke of skateboarding to other countries was a blast. What, if any, were the darker moments of the time? Being one of the best in the world in 1979 at age 19, then overnight, the skateboarding market died and I was lost. I went from making about $6-8K a month to nothing overnight. Also breaking my right foot in half and not

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Well, like I said, I just followed my heart and that told me to keep riding my skateboard and making art. What’s it like to be considered one of the greatest skaters of all time? Ha ha! I am . . .? OK, so who are your skating heroes? There are a lot of guys who showed me the way to show up and throw down over the years and they are Greg Carroll, Torger Johnson, Herbie Fletcher, Bruce Logan, Tony Alva, Stacy Peralta, and Steven Picciolo. The Loop of Death at the ripe-old-age of 40plus . . . what’s up with that? Can you tell us something of how to pull that trick off ? Ok, I will tell you three things you have to do in order to pull off The Loop of Death: 1) Rotate your shoulders so they are squarely facing the loop. 2) Keep your knees slightly bent, but DO NOT bend them while navigating the loop. 3) Keep both arms out to the side while following and staying on the green line. And have respect for the loop. I’ve seen way too many guys just roll up and think they are going to pull it and try to get it over with . . . you have to become one with it . . . Does the passion for skating still burn inside you – and do you still hop on a board for a bit of turning and burning? Of course. I don’t ride as much as I used to but I still skate at least twice a week . . . mostly empty pools or ditches that feel like surfing. Words of encouragement for young skaters . . . Try and ride everything – pools, parks, ramps, ditches, downhill, slalom, mega ramp, loop, street, EVERYTHING! Your philosophy on life? One of the biggest lessons skateboarding has taught me is to live in the moment. Because living in the past welcomes depression, living in the future welcomes anxiety, and living in the moment is where life is RIGHT NOW . . . so go skateboarding.


Screen grabs from the documentary Dogtown & Z-Boys, directed by Stacy Peralta.

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retro grades

Tony Alva - frontside air. Photo by: Glen E. Friedman. Sony Pictures Classics 2001

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Z-Boy Jay Adams on his journey from surf to skate . . . It all started for me when my stepdad, Kent Sherwood, met my mom at a party in Venice Beach in the early ’60s. He’d moved to California after growing up in Hawaii – being one of the only white beach boys there in Waikiki. Being a surfer himself he got me into it when I was about four years old. That was in 1965-66. At first I started riding the little blue and yellow surf mats that he rented out of his surfboard rental shop under the north side of Pacific Ocean Park pier. After that he made me a custom half-size long board that he made at David Sweet surf shop on Olympic Boulevard in Santa Monica. Kent was a master mould builder so he was helping Sweet build the early “pop-out” surfboards and experimenting with new foam blank ideas. I grew up in Dave’s surf shop and of course on the beach at POP pier at his summer time surfboard rental pace . . . so I guess this is actually before the whole Dogtown Z-Boy thing got going – that came later after I’d gotten on my first surf team. I rode for a San Fernando surf shop called CME Surfboards. I was 13 or 14 and doing all the WSA surf contests in South California. Cere Muscrelia, the guy who owned CME, sponsored me and was a super cool guy who made boards way ahead of his time. Funny because back then there was so much anti valley stuff going on at all the beaches especially at POP pier but I learned early to make friends with people everywhere instead of being that local dick that can’t surf anywhere but the place they fight for. There were a few of us that skated and surfed all the time – Tony Alva and Wentzle Ruml were two of my closest friends that skated back then. After the Cadillac wheel came out skateboarding really became popular again. Alva and myself had been going up to Paul Revere (elementary school) regularly for a couple of years before this happened so we kinda had a jump start on all the kids who were starting to get into skateboarding. Surfing and skateboarding is something I’ve always done and the movie Skater Dater was really a life-changing event for me because it’s the first time I saw kids perform tricks on a skateboard . . . so it got me all amped to do everything they did.

political, and if you weren't riding for a San Diego brand they wouldn’t put a picture of you in their magazine. Jeff Ho and Skipper (Engblom) were making surfboards at the Zephyr shop in Santa Monica and had heard about the Del Mar contest so they let everyone know they were putting together a junior surf ’n’ skate team that would go down to Del Mar and take all their trophies . . . ha ha ha . . . we all knew we could skate better than these guys we saw in the magazines – Ty Page, Bruce Logan, Greg Weaver are all great skaters but they skated the old fashioned way, sort of stuck in that old-school long board style of surf-skating mixed in with some gymnastic kinda stuff. We all copied the young Hawaiian kids like Mike Ho and especially Larry Bertlemann. When we got to the event we couldn’t believe what they were making us skate on . . . there were no banks or ramps just a flat piece of wood like a giant stage or something and we skated completely different kinda stuff. Paul Revere and Belligio were all 20-foot-high banks that we surfedskated. This was different . . . it’s 100 per cent flat ground! I was wondering what do you do on this stuff – we didn’t do all the nose wheelies or handstands like all the San Diego guys. So basically we just did our Larry Bertlemann thing on the flat stage and the judges weren’t sure how to judge the way we skated. Like I said, all the SD guys copied 1960s style long board surfing mixed in with some gymnastic moves. But the Z-Boys went as fast as we could and threw down bert turns . . . and I even did a few things I’d never done before – little airs in the form of bunny hops, and a carving air bert off the stage that left the judges with their mouths open wondering how to compare the two different styles. Anyway, it all evolved from there and just kept changing until skateboarding became a worldwide sport.

Jumping off a curb was one of the first things I can remember really trying to learn. But back to the Z-Boy thing . . . as skateboarding became popular again I entered a skateboard contest down at the Del Mar Fairground. I think I won the slalom and got second in the freestyle so actually I won first place overall in the boys’ division. Del Mar was actually a pretty big deal to us. We’d all been skating quite a bit and SkateBoarder magazine was basically all San Diego guys in it and running it, so it was very

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fashion

Jacket by Ali Isaksen available at a.muse Leather gloves by Dust & Beau

PHOTOGRAPHY BY ANGGA PRATAMA styliNG BY The Ă– MODELS BY Polina Barbasova

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Leather motorcycle top by Ă–zlem Esen available at a.muse N.L.P custom pants. Alice McCall shoes

fashion

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top stylist's own Pants by Ali Isaksen Belt by Ă–zlem Esen available at a.muse bracelets by Dust & Beau

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fashion

both pages: VinTAge top and pants available at a.muse shoes by Ă–zlem Esen bracelets by Dust & Beau

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leather top by Ă–zlem Esen vintage pants available at a.muse shoes by Alice McCall

fashion

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VERY BIG THANKS to Mahendra at Twice bar and Jared mell

Jacket by Ali Isaksen available at a.muse Leather gloves by Dust & Beau shoes by ozlem esen


travel

saltbrigade WORDS: Tyler Mars PHOTOS: ANTHONY DODDS “Well if the good die young, I wanna be bad, like a fat dude in a pair of tight pants going off into a place unknown…” Quintron

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Nose diving.

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travel

Sunset quiver.

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Some things just happen, no reason or warning. Some happen

upon us and give us reason to believe that was the raddest

thing we have ever witnessed. Like the first time you heard The Ramones or watched as a tornado ripped threw a trailer park like a fat man in a meat pie shop. This is a bit of both . . .

Bali is a relatively small spot for travellers who share the same interests. If you’re looking to Zen out and hone your yoga

skills, you may find yourself in in the mountains of Ubud. Or if you’re looking to surf your nuts off, drink many a cold Bintang

along with a dash of tequila while getting bootleg tattoos, then

one finds one’s self along the coastline of Bali, where this group of cats met and joined up for a week no one will ever forget.

The crew was a bit of a colourful collection, much like a quilted blanket your grandma made. Or, as I tell this tale, an eclectic redux of The Dirty Dozen, (minus four).

The cast of characters runs like this: the lovely Kassia Meador,

Jared Mel, “The Longhaired Peace Warrior”, both hailing from California; Zye Norris “The Baby Faced Assassin”, Harrison

Roach, “Sergeant at Charms”, and the man behind the beard, Thomas “Doc” Bexon, all from Noosa. Husni Ridhwan and

Deni “The Grom”, our local guides and communication officers. And finally, rounding out the Salt Brigade, Bryce “Big Bung”

Young commands respect when high in the air or smashing lips to pieces and leading a charge.

The mission statement was simple; mount up on bikes, a 4x4 for hauling beer/gear and a choice of weapons of self-construction to get the job done. Follow the guides east and then off to the west in search of good times and better waves.

They rode hard on dark pavement ’til the rising sun lit the

way into the bush. Hot on the trail, with numb asses and feet ready to walk the plank, the first spot was shred ahead. Their gears shifted down as their brainpans revved up, they were

there at last. With bikes resting in the shade and the jeep as

basecamp, the brigade suited up ready for action. Like a flock of waterfowl, they took to the sea, putting them in the right state of mind, for they knew they were in the right spot to carry out the mission.

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travel

There were waves aplenty on the first part of their mission, right

hand barrels peeling down the point beckoning the crew to tuck in and check out. Long stretches of wide open territory ready to

explore, clean beaches, clean waves and blue waters, it felt as if the hand of modern time had not yet reached this far. To feast from the buffet of old Bali was an indulgence the brigade would not grow full of.

Local fishermen and animals creedling in the bush poked their

heads out to see for themselves what all the hoots and throat horn blowing was all about. One by one, the group shared the lead as

the sets kept rolling in. No tidal change would force them out of the water, they had their assignments and were there to stay and

make their mark, if only for a moment in time, on this blue marvel hurling though space we call home.

With the sun going down and a long ride to headquarters, the

battalion quenched their thirst, mounted the bikes and loaded

the gear into the 4x4 and set off as a curtain of stars began to peel open . . . ready for the next act.

The next few days were the same as the group headed off at

sunrise, in multiple directions like the arms of Shiva, each time finding spots different than the others the day before. Left and

right points, beach breaks and whatever they could sink their fins into. Scenes of wicked drops with knee-jerking stalls, dragging their hands along crystal walls.

As the group travelled together, the bond between them grew

stronger and stronger. No longer a bunch of holidaymakers put

together for a good time, now more like a family lending hands when needed . . . laughing, sharing and growing much like the

swell they were after. Their mission came to an end way too soon.

And although they accomplished what they set out to do and were very satisfied with their outcomes, they left wanting more. More they shall have as each member of the rag-tag salt brigade went

their separate ways, just waiting for the call to order on the next adventure, to a place unknown . . .

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Pot shots in paradise.

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travel

Lip service (above). Postcards home (right).

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passions

Leap of faith.

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Tah, what is parkour, and when did you first get into it? Traditionally, parkour is the discipline of negotiating any obstacles in your environment with just the faculties of your mind and body, to move most efficiently from point A to point B. It began in the suburbs of Paris in the 1980s with a group of teenagers who, inspired by their fathers’ military and fire-fighting heroics, developed a whole system of movement techniques and really took it into a sport of its own. About seven years ago I discovered it through the video game, Assassin’s Creed – imagining how cool it would be if people could move like in the game. Upon discovering it was real, I was compelled. It was the first sport I’d been drawn to in 10 years. What else got you hooked?

Danziel Carre talks to tah riq about parkour . . . and his visions for the sport in Bali. PHOTOS: NATASHA Serezhnikova

The idea of being able to overcome anything in your environment using only your body and mind. The idea of overcoming obstacles – in any form – is something that people go through in life. Whether it’s “I’ve hit a wall at work” or, “I need to take a leap into a new career”, people are constantly analogising their hardships and circumstances. I think what parkour does – especially if you make the link conscious – is give you the tools and aptitudes to overcome obstacles. If you consciously link a challenge that you face in your life to a physical representation of it, by virtue of overcoming one challenge, you dissolve the other and create real change. Sounds powerful . . . where in your own life has this practice and outlook proved itself to help overcome challenges? I was in Liverpool on top of a church roof and the idea of jumping off the roof absolutely terrified me. At the time, I was living in the UK selling computers after graduating with a degree and Masters in 3D animation, and I felt desperately stuck . . . like I needed to take a leap of faith. And, a weird thing happened – I thought, “what does this jump remind me of elsewhere in my life?” That was the real pivotal turning point in my understanding of life and obstacles. I thought, “it would be like quitting my job tomorrow, not knowing how I’d pay my rent or bills – because both are a leap of faith”. I vowed to jump off the roof . . . and if I did I would quit my job, never thinking for a second I’d actually do it then. But over the course of that weekend, I’d pushed past so many mental

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passions

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“Some will play, others will train – it’s really open to your own interpretation, but the idea is to grow superheroes.”

Airtime.

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passions

barriers and stood looking at the jump with bleeding hands from a move I’d just tried, disconnected from any physical pain or what my eyes could see, feeling very strong from what I’d just done . . . and I threw caution to the wind and jumped . . . successfully. True to my word, I walked into work the next day at 9am and resigned. It was hugely empowering. The funny thing was I was on such a high from having just quit, three hours later while talking to a customer I accepted his higher-paying offer as an animator. Since then, I’ve taught overweight, shy kids who, over the course of their training, have lost weight and become confident in their bodies and with themselves. One student wanted to beatbox but assumed it’d be too difficult – when he began looking at what he’d accomplished in class, he started believing more. I taught him the absolute basics in minutes, and two weeks (and a lot of practice) later, he came back killing it! There have been some pretty profound transformations and cool successes. Where can I do parkour in Bali? It tends to be more of a big-city thing because of the labyrinthine design of cities with confined spaces, walls and railings. At the moment parkour can be practiced at the Parkour Playland at 3V in Canggu, which I designed just over a year ago, or in Denpasar with the local 20-somethings around Puputan Park. I’ve got something special in the works opening soon, which may be a real game-changer for the sport . . . How’d you go from doing it in the UK to becoming Bali’s “parkour ambassador”?

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I would not do parkour in Bali. If I had somehow managed to find it in me to get to the top and back down, I’d earn the right. That

became my motivation. And any time I just wanted to quit, I’d just

say, okay, just keep putting one foot in front of the other at your own

pace. When I got back to the bottom, falling every five steps because my legs kept giving way under me, I felt I’d really earned it. Over

the ensuing six months, I shed all the weight, got in the best shape I’d ever been in, and really became the ambassador for parkour.

The idea of being able to associate real change with real challenge is very much how I live my life. You have to choose the right analogy for your challenge and if you do that, then you can

overcome the life challenge by overcoming the physical challenge, simply by pre-associating them together. And it does work. What’s the deal with your newest venture? Well . . . drum roll please, I’m building the first MTM Superhero

Factory. A parkour-inspired, indoor, movement-tainment zone where you can play-test your superpowers safely. It’s a space where anybody of any age can come and explore their boundaries in a controlled environment. Some will play, others will train – it’s really open

to your own interpretation, but the idea is to grow superheroes. It will develop into a real-life platform game, where instead

of just jumping for badges and points, you’ll actually get real,

tangible rewards, especially for helping others. There’ll be ranks,

assessments and you’ll be able to see all your progress documented

After a couple years of excessive partying and drinking here, I was pretty chubby and out of shape with crappy stamina. When this opportunity presented itself, I saw there was potential to do something different in Bali that hadn’t been done before, but didn’t trust myself . . .

. . . all kinds of things that’ll make it a very engaging experience.

If quitting my job was like a leap of faith, starting a parkour venture was more like climbing a mountain. So when the owner of 3V, Franck Girardot, invited me to climb Mount Agung, it was exactly the kind of uphill struggle I needed to prove to myself I could do it. At the time it was the hardest physical thing I’d ever done but I vowed unless I could get to the very top and come back down,

good at anything – workshops, invited gurus etc included.

There’s a lot of innovative ideas going into this that haven’t

been done anywhere, I’ve checked. When all these pieces are put into this one formula, it’s gonna make something really

special. The ultimate goal is to create a hub for people to become Using physical ways of training, we’ll show people where their mind is at and how to overcome, first, their mental obstacles – which they can then apply to the rest of their life to lead more fulfilling lives in other areas. It’s going to be huge!


Luxur y. d te c u tr s n o c e D ubanbali.com .k w w w t a e n li Now on


swag

Swag. Schmatter. Branded barang . . . at a fraction of the regular price. Who's in?

It’s no secret that Bali is a shopping mecca with glitzy malls, chic boutiques and markets galore. But what many people don’t realise is that the island is also home to a plethora of factory outlets where you can get brand name goods at a fraction of the regular retail cost. If you’re not a stickler for this season’s latest designs, you can save a mint on older stock at these factory outlets that get the goods straight from the source.

surf factory outlets in Bali. The racks here feature high-quality surf brands like Quiksilver, Roxy, Volcom, Oakley, No Fear, Nixon and West, and all of the brands are on sale year round, so it is pretty much impossible not to get a bargain. BSO also has free parking for customers and a cosy cafe called Warung BSO where you can get cold drinks and snacks when all that bargain hunting has got your thirst on.

Billabong Factory

Jl. By Pass Ngurah Rai 9 Hours: Daily 9am to 10pm

For affordable Billabong swag, head to the company’s only factory outlet in Asia and explore three floors packed to the rafters with sales items like bikinis, board shorts, T-shirts, thongs, bags and more. There are always huge sales going on here, so you can get original Billabong apparel and accessories for up to 75 per cent off what you would pay at retail stores. As an added bonus, the outlet is on a stretch of road famous for surf factory outlets, so your taxi driver is almost guaranteed to know the way. Mall Bali Galleria Unit 1A No. 32 Hours: Daily 9am to 10pm

Tel: 0361 767 005

Bali Surf Located just down the road from the Billabong Factory Outlet, Bali Surf Outlet (BSO) is one of the biggest

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Tel: 0361 767 248

Original Surf Outlet Another discount outlet on the Bypass strip, this three-storey monster of a store has all the surf gear and equipment you could dream of and then some. The stock is constantly changing, so if you don’t find what you like the first time, it pays to come back another day to check out the newer options. They also have huge sales throughout the year where you can get ridiculous deals on men’s and women’s clothing, footwear, and even new and used surfboards. Just be sure to get there early as the store can get packed out on sale days. Jl. By Pass Ngurah Rai 417 B Hours: 9am to 10pm

Tel: 0361-766 646


It's all gotta go.

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swag

Bargain basement.

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Surfer’s Paradise Along with the usual surf brands like Oakley, Reef, Roxy and Quiksilver, you can also find some of the harder to find labels at Surfer’s Paradise like Anja Sun Suko, Cult, Dragon, Industry, and Bilo Australia. The focus here is on stylish street wear and skateboard and surf gear that is comfortable, looks good and won’t break the bank. You can’t miss this spot, as there is a massive statue of a winged surfer riding a bright blue wave out front. Jl. By Pass Ngurah Rai 210 Tel: 0361 705 385 Hours: Daily 9am to 9pm

Body&Soul Fashion savvy and thrifty girls in the know head to Body&Soul’s factory outlets, which are conveniently located on Jalan Legian in Kuta and in the heart of Seminyak. This brilliant Indonesian brand has hundreds of stores scattered across the country, and with such a fast turnover of clothing and accessories, they are constantly clearing out their shops to make room for new arrivals. Head to the factory outlets to pick up flirty dresses, blouses, skirts and casual wear in a range of colours and sizes at up to 70 per cent off what you would pay for new arrivals. Factory Outlet Kuta Jl. Legian 162 Tel: 0361 767 169 Hours: Daily 9am to 10:30pm Factory Outlet Carefour Jl. sunset road unit 4 Hours: Daily 9am to 10pm

Tel: 8477380

Havaianas Thongs, flip-flops, sandals — whatever you call them, Havaianas has got them in a rainbow of colours, funky patterns and sizes for all feet at their factory outlet in Seminyak. This Brazilian brand is renowned for its stylish summer footwear made with durable rubber insoles and comfortable straps. Forget the knock-offs

you find along the streets of Kuta and make your way to the factory outlet to get your own original pair of Havaianas at prices that are a steal. Jl. Sunset Road 6, Seminyak Tel: 0361 847 5733 Hours: 10am to 9.30pm www.havaianas.com

Surfer Girl For the ladies who ride, the Surfer Girl Factory Outlet is your go-to place in Bali to get all the top surf brands at discounted prices. When new stock arrives at the main store on Jalan Legian, all of the older stock ends up here, so you can find last season’s styles from Roxy, Billabong, Bamboo Blonde, Body&Soul, and of course Surfer Girl’s own line of colourful and comfy clothing for adults and kids. Keep an eye out for their big blowout sales when you can get discounts of up to 90 per cent off. Jl. Legian 138 Tel: 0361 752 693 Hours: 9am to 12 midnight www.surfer-girl.com

Paul Ropp Fans of Paul Ropp’s unique and vibrant collections eagerly await the designer’s biannual factory warehouse sales where you can get summery dresses, richly patterned shirts and lightweight and breezy pants at bargain prices. The popular sales events are held at the Paul Ropp factory warehouse in Kerobokan and last for four days, but make sure to get there early if you want prime pick of the gorgeous garments. Jl. Pengubengan No.1x Kuta (near the Kerobokan prison) Tel: 0361 730 023 Opening Hours: 9am to 9pm www.paulropp.com

Bamboo Blonde Just around the corner from the Bamboo

Blonde flagship store lies its factory outlet – a treasure trove of flowing dresses, silky tops, sexy skirts and glittering bling. This is where all of the older stock goes when new collections come out, so you can find spectacular deals on last season’s fashions, including handbags, jewellery, belts and shoes. To get here, just follow the signs down the small laneway behind the Seminyak store. Jl. Laksmana Gang Lumut No 1, Oberoi Tel: 0361 731864 www.bambooblonde.com

Animale French designer Jacques Ruc brings Mediterranean flair and tropical inspiration to his innovative fashion collections that are produced right here in Bali. For affordable clothing and jewellery that is both timeless and contemporary, visit the Animale Factory Outlet to mix and match men’s and women’s designs made with only the finest materials and superior craftsmanship. Jl. Raya Kuta 82 Tel: 0361 757 015 Hours: Monday to Saturday 9am to 7pm, Sunday 10am to 6pm www.animale.com

SKS Step into the bright and airy Simple Konsep Store (SKS), and you will find a melting pot of ready-to-wear items from designers as diverse as Stella Rissa, Vivienne Westwood and Katsunori Ueda, as well as goodies for the home including lighting, furniture, books and electronics. With killer sales events going on throughout the year, this is the spot to go to spruce up your wardrobe or kit out your house on the cheap. Jl. Kayu Aya 40, Seminyak Hours: 10am to 8pm www.sksbali.com

Tel: 0361 730 393

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Mango Vision is Bali’s five-star hotel TV channel broadcast to thousands of rooms in the island’s best hotels. With award-winning documentary, travel, sport, fashion and food content, Mango makes sense for viewers and advertisers alike. Take advantage of Bali’s biggest viewing market: advertise on Mango, and reach an audience entertained by the best local content on TV. info@mangovision.tv

www.mangovision.tv


eat streets

you've surfed, you've tanned and you've shopped. now it's time to eat. erik baker goes in search of bali's best soul food.

I love burgers Step back in time as you enter Cosmic Diner on the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Jalan Dewi Sri, famed for serving the best burgers in town. The interior will send you straight onto the set of Back to the Future – checkered floor, neon jukebox, red-cushioned steely bar stools and retro-décor that keeps your eyes busy. Highly regarded for its classic American diner-style menu of burgers, shakes, pancakes, waffles, sandwiches, fries and coffee, it leaves little to wish for. While it is not just a stroll away from the beach or the central hub of Kuta, it is well worth the drive. Add pasta; decent French toast served with fresh strawberries, banana and cream; grilled fish and a nice Caesar salad to the menu choices and you know everyone’s taste is catered for. The shakes are to die for . . . try the caramel, chocolate trifecta or cookies and cream. And once you have worked your way through a classic, cheese, or special burger accompanied by your choice of hash brown or the best fries, a pick of gelato will perfectly round off your dining experience. Telp: 0361 8947 389 www.cosmicdinerbali.com The best steaks in town With its world-renowned brand as prominent as its street frontage on Jalan Pantai Kuta, Hard Rock Café has got to be a highlight on your dining list for smokehouse steaks and sandwiches. Hailed as the best place in town for steaks, barbequed ribs and chicken . . . have a go at the massive Texas-style 10oz. smokehouse sandwich served with chipotle and hickory BBQ sauce, cheddar cheese, crispy jalapenos and crispy onions. Try the superb 21-day-aged, center-cut, 12oz. New York strip or sirloin grilled to your

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liking and topped with merlot-garlic butter accompanied by fresh vegetables and garlic herb smashed potatoes with gravy. Or choose from an extensive list of American-style burgers . . . Simply divine!

Open daily from 11am ‘til 11pm Monday to Friday and until midnight on weekends.

The awe-inspiring music culture décor, the ambience and cool setting, mixed with great tunes and live music every night, and a cocktail list as varied as the rock legends immortalised on the walls, all make Hard Rock Café an experience in itself.

Give me pizza and no one gets hurt . . .

Telp: 0361 755 661 www.hardrockhotels.net Fish and chips Set right in the heart of Beachwalk shopping centre opposite Kuta Beach, Fish ’n’ Co with its hard-to-miss boat-like round building fittingly surrounded by fish ponds, is a rustic, hip and relaxed eatery that has claimed its place among the best on the merit of its fish and chips. As the name suggests, it is all about the seafood here and lots of it. Whether you fancy lobster, prawns, crab or mussels, love your fish grilled, baked or poached, with pasta, on pizza or otherwise . . . you will love Fish ‘n’ Co. They serve 10 different styles of classic battered fish and chips. My choice, the Philadelphia version, had garlic herb Philadelphia cheese inside to add a unique flavor to the classic dish served that was accompanied by signature super crunchy chips and house-made lemon butter sauce. Take your pick from the “Around the World” choices of Danish, Italian, Singaporean, Japanese, Balinese, New York or African versions all with unique twists. Add to that the cool and airy ambience, great tunes and fast and friendly service and you know why Fish ’n’ Co hits the mark. Fully licensed, you can refresh and indulge on your next fuel stop when you fancy fish.

Tel: 0361 – 8464 901 www.fishandco.com

True Italian-style pizza can be hard to come by. Sure, you might say that you can get pizza on just about every corner, but with the many different interpretations they are not your true traditional Italian pizza. When long-time Bali visitors Giuseppe and his son Luigi Amorotti decided to live in Bali, they followed a family tradition to open Pronto Pizza. Giuseppe had grown up in the family bakery and pizzeria in Puglia near Barletta, Italy, so having a pizza business was simply part of life for him. His cousin took over the running of the longstanding family business back home so father and son could get to work creating what has fast become one of the best pizza joints Kuta. If you have ever had a real Italian pizza you’ll know what I mean, if you have not, then a pit stop at Pronto is a must-do for you . . . pronto! Located in a small shop front only 20 metres from the beach end of Poppies I, the small eatery is set downstairs and at first sight does not let on that it holds the secret to some of the best pizzas in town. With only a few rustic tables out front and an open kitchen in which you can see the master at work. This happening little family eatery produces some 28 different styles and flavours leaving any pizza lover with the challenge of too much choice, or, in my case, to return time and again to try them all . . . Pronto is open from 10am ‘til 11pm seven days a week, eat in and take-away. Telp: 0361 300 7020 www.prontopizzabali.com


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1 & 3 - Fish 'n' Co; 2 & 5 - Hard Rock; 4 & 6 - Satriya Cottages.

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eat streets Jambalaya – seafood to feed the soul 90 Degrees restaurant, as the name suggests is to be found on a sharp bend, the first from the beach end in Poppies II. The relaxing eatery of rustic interior split over two levels blasts live music every night from 8pm ‘til 11pm, while serving a wide range of affordable cocktails and beers to accompany an extensive menu. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner from 7am every day, it is the perfect place to stop in on your way back from the beach – only 50 metres away. With their all-day brekky, and a menu including traditional Indonesian dishes and Western classics, it caters to just about any taste. House specials such as the seafood platter, Satriya Extravaganza, of king prawns, squid, crab, and red snapper fillets has earned its place as the definite top seller. Another one of the chef ’s specials and a special Kuta soul food not commonly found is jambalaya, a traditional Mediterranean seafood risotto cooked in olive oil and filled to the brim with fresh fruits of the sea in a rich sauce. It is not found on the menu, but frequently requested, and also featured on the chef ’s special menu, so ask and you shall receive. Open from 7am – 11pm, 7 days a week. Telp: 0361 758331 www.90degreesrestaurantkuta.com I love meat - pork knuckle Mama’s German restaurant has made a name for itself since 1985, located on Jalan Legian in the heart of Kuta, it is hard to miss and definitely worth a visit for a handful of reasons. First there is the vast menu of German specialties of mix ’n’ match traditional meat dishes served with your choice of sauerkraut, red cabbage, mash, fries, boiled spuds or dumplings, plus a wide range of other dishes from fish to schnitzel and goulash to burgers, pizza to Indonesian meals. Then there is beer . . . wouldn’t be German without it. Bintang on tap and a nice selection of imported German liquid ambers too – that alone is worth grabbing a wooden table at this charismatic eatery reminiscent of an large traditional beer hall. If soccer is your game, don’t

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miss a thing here – Bundesliga or Champions League, and definitely UEFA cup, all on a stadium-sized screen in Mama’s alleyway marked by the massive brightly coloured cow set on the footpath out front. I could not go past the traditional Pork Knuckle or Schwein Haxe served with sauerkraut and mash. Trust me, it is not for the faint hearted . . . you need to like your meat to start with and bring a bit of an appetite to work your way through this one. Another great traditional German choice is the beef roulade which melts on your tongue, served in a gravy and accompanied by red cabbage and Spaetzle – a traditional fresh-cut pasta. Wash these down with a couple of steins of ale from the keg or try an imported Bavarian beer to complete your experience at Mama’s German Eatery. Open 24 hours, seven days. Telp: 0361 761 151 www.bali-mamas.com Traditional babi guling A hard-to-miss eatery boasting a massive street frontage with huge live seafood bar and open dining room, with sport coverage on screen and live music every night, on Jalan Kartika Plaza en route to Waterbom, is B Couple bar & grill. The menu ranges from great Aussie meals from the grill (imported meat) endless super-fresh seafood, Chinese food (with Dim Sum and private karaoke room) and a wide range of traditional and modern fusion Balinese dishes. But what B Couple has recently carved a name for itself for is suckling pig or babi guling. This traditional dish requires a whole young pig that is cooked slowly on a spit to give you a culinary indulgence that is truly traditional Balinese. But hurry, they only put on one babi guling a day, so either book ahead or be there early. Icy cold beer, wine, affordable cocktails and juices of any kind make B Couple a great spot to drop in for a refresher and a snack too. Secret tip from the sweets department . . . try the choc grenache flan . . . I have seldom found such

a rich and yummy interpretation of this tasty classic. Jalan Kartika Plaza, Tuban, Kuta. Telp: (62 361) 761 414 www.Kutaparadisohotel.com The best Indonesian food . . . Kafé Batan Waru, opposite Waterbom on Jalan Kartika Plaza, promises a great culinary experience after a good beach or surf session with an fab all-day dining menu. Batan Waru uses all organic ingredients – grown on the family farm in Kintamani – in its meals, and free-range chicken and fresh seafood is carefully sourced and then cooked to traditional Balinese recipes handed down through generations. Try the cumi-cumi (calamari), lemper ayam (spicy chicken grilled inside banana leave parcels), their otak-otak (fishcakes served with chili-peanut sauce), or tuna wonton for starters – simply scrumptious. Follow on with the Lombok specialty ayam taliwang – a half hen simmered in spices and grilled until tender, which lets you instantly realise that finger-licking chicken ain’t from Kentucky. Other traditional dishes hard to pass on are the tenderloin served with baby potatoes and kidney beans in Padang spices accompanied by a rich coconut sauce; the ikan kakap bakar – whole baby snapper marinated in lemongrass and tamarind, grilled to perfection; or the classic nasi campur – a mixed platter of different flavours framing a serving of steamed rice. If you are one to plan ahead, call Batan Waru a day in advance to be served the famed bebek betutu – a whole duck which is normally a dish for two unless you really have worked up an appetite. A relaxed, leafy garden setting with warm dining room décor, the friendliest staff around, and a central location just a skip from all the action, make Batan Waru a great spot for traditional Indonesian food any time of the day. Open daily from 10.30am – midnight. Telp: 0361 766 303 www.batanwaru.com


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1 - B-couple; 2, 3 & 4 - Mama's.

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staying power

Hard Rock Hotel.

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In case you have not yet found your accommodation in Kuta, or like to mix it up a little . . . want to try something different or simply want to earmark something for your next visit, we sent our scout to find some of the best places to stay that accommodate a wide range of travellers' budgets.

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staying power

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The Stones Hotel.

Satriya Cottages.

Sandi Phala Villas.

The Pullman Bali Legian Nirwana Hotel.


Villa de Daun

Sandi Phala Villas

Centrally located on Jalan Legian in close proximity to all the fun under the sun, Villa de Daun offers one, two and three-bedroom villas filled with charismatic luxury that makes your stay in Kuta an exceptional experience. With prices from US$250 a night for the one-bedroom villa and US$700 a night for the three-bedroom villa, de Daun is the perfect place to live and relax while exploring all that Kuta has to offer. The renowned Dala spa will take care of all the extra pampering and the beautifully appointed villas (both nominated for the 2014 World Luxury Hotel and Spa Awards) make de Daun an exceptional recipe for an unforgettable stay in Kuta.

Edging onto Kuta Beach with stunning ocean views from its 18-metre infinity pool, Sandi Phala Villas boasts 11 luxuriously appointed suites capturing the unique flavour of Bali plus all the modern conveniences to ensure a relaxing and rejuvenating stay. All suites have their own pantry, study room, living room, dining area and expansive bathroom. With rates starting from US$190 a night, they make the perfect home away from home. Not your average hotel-style accommodation by far, but if you are looking for a truly Balinese experience, then Sandi Phala is a fine choice for your next visit.

www.villadedaun.com Sheraton bali kuta resort Celebrating its first anniversary in Jalan Pantai, opposite Kuta Beach, the luxury and comfort synonymous with this well-known hotel brand leaves you catered for and content – with super comfy beds, all the bells and whistles, spacious rooms, great views, professional service, and a cool infinity pool overlooking the beach and ocean. The bespoke Bene restaurant caters to your every whim, from poolside cocktails to rich Italian dinners. Add to this a spa and gym and all the in-house services you could want . . . not to mention one of the grandest breakfast buffets you will find anywhere . . . all make a stay at the Sheraton Kuta a superb holiday experience. A leisurely stroll from all the action, the Sheraton is hard to beat. Rooms start from US$164 including breakfast. www.starwoodhotels.com/sheraton/ Le Méridien at Jimbaran Backing onto the famed fresh seafood market and beachfront eateries of Jimbaran Bay is Le Meredien’s latest installment on Bail’s accommodation landscape – a 252-room haven of leisure with the distinct design focus this brand is famous for. The new resort and spa, gives a lush oasis-like feel with its 1300sqm of saltwater pool stretching from the Bamboo Chic restaurant to the boutique and spa at the other end, past 40 suites and apartments with direct pool access. Top choices are the two-storey rooftop suits with their own pool and BBQ area where views stretch endlessly out over the ocean. An evening at the rooftop Smoqee Sky Bar is a must. With the beach club, sand and surf only metres away Le Méridien is a definite contender for the beach-hungry traveler happy to be a step away from Kuta’s hustle and bustle. Rooms start from US$154 a night. www.starwoodhotels.com/lemeridien

www.thesandiphala.com The Stones Hotel Taking its place as a new icon in the Kuta accommodation landscape, The Stones is a beautifully designed hotel by the Marriott group. While the venue is fast becoming a hot spot for shopping, dining and late nights out, the Autograph Collection hotel offers bold style and charismatic luxury. The pool suites – overlooking massive pools lit up by night to give a magical ambience – make a great holiday option at around US$260 a night. Standard room rates start from US$180. With a distinct luxury and sophistication that spreads from the lobby, restaurant and hotel rooms through to the spa, gym and kids’ club, The Stones is sure to turn your stay into a memorable occasion. www.thestones-kuta.com Chill House Canggu The Chill House is the perfect crash pad for surf lovers with a wide variety of room styles starting from US$140 a night, and offering a host of “surf and stay” packages. Located five minutes from the swell and about 8km from the hub of Kuta, Chill House’s setting among the rice fields gives it a relaxing atmosphere and makes it the ideal one-stop-shop for your next surf holiday in Bali. Organic food, free-range and imported meats are served from breakfast through to the all-you-can-eat dinner, making The Chill House a healthy and fun place to stay. www.thechillhouse.com The Pullman Bali Legian Nirwana Hotel With its 353 luxuriously appointed balcony rooms overlooking lush gardens and a feature pool, The Pullman offers guests a superb stay on Kuta Beach. Featuring bath tubs, separate showers,

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staying power satellite TV, Wi-Fi and all the requisite in-room services, The Pullman has got to be one of the top choices for a stay in Kuta – starting from US$100 a night. Add to that two restaurants and bars, kids’ club, gym and business centre, you can rest assured that your every whim will be well catered for.

central location makes Kuta Seaview a great choice to stay with the famous Kuta beach right at your doorstep.

www.pullmanbalilegiannirwana.com

THE 101 Hotel Legian

Hard Rock Hotel The famed musical memorabilia beacon, Hard Rock Hotel opposite Kuta Beach, is one of the most unique places in town. From the impressive lobby filled with collectors’ items from the music world, a hotel bar with a raised live stage, and countless tributes to rock legends gracing the walls, the rock ‘n’ roll ambience extends to the luxury and comfort of a wide variety of rooms. Add to that the Rock Kids’ Club and Tabu Teen Lounge, and a massive water oasis with waterslides, multiple pools, a mini beach with cabanas and shack bar, you know that all ages will be well catered for. Starting from US$170 a night inclusive of in-house radio station and all the musical memories you can imagine, the Hard Rock is one hotel you have to experience. www.bali.hardrockhotels.net Patra Jasa Bali Resort and Villas

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www.kutaseaviewhotel.com

Want a place that offers style, class, and luxury at a reasonable price – the 101 in Legian is the place for you. The interior design is minimalist modern but with a warmth that is welcoming. With ample parking, franchised coffee shop and a rooftop dining and music lounge, the 101 offers a self-contained vacation space within easy reach of the attractions of Bali’s entertainment hub. This three-star property offers value for money but doesn’t skimp on the details with room rates starting from Rp. 588.000++, where friendly, attentive service and a one-stop-shop for holiday fun is the name of the game. The 101 hotel also offers an easyway booking concept whereby guests who book in advance are eligible for special benefits based on length of stay. It’s called “easy-access booking”. Your booking is guaranteed and you will be pleasantly surprised at the bonuses that come with this unique approach to making your trip to Bali that much more easy. www.the101bali.com deKuta Hotel

Patra Resort has got to be one of the most conveniently located places for travellers, set right on the beach, close to the airport and within only a few minutes drive from all the fun and excitement of Kuta. Boasting some 500 rooms, suites and villas, four swimming pools and an equal number of restaurants, and its own nightclub, this place has a classic Bali feel – comfortable, spacious rooms with all the modern conveniences set out among expansive gardens. Having played host to world leaders and travellers the world over, the Patra Resort and Spa has earned its place in the accommodation landscape of Kuta. Room rates start at US$120++.

Just a wee stroll of 50 metres from Kuta’s main beach up Poppies II is deKuta hotel – a 50-room home away from home suited for the budget-conscious traveler who wants to be close to the beach. The restaurant and sunset lounge, Nebular, is an eclectic and groovy eatery – great for dinners and cocktails with live music – which also serves the buffet breakfast included in the room rate. With rates starting at just Rp.700,000, a big pool occupying the courtyard of this cool three-storey, family-owned, hotel, and all of Kuta’s action being only a stroll away, deKuta Hotel might just be the perfect place for you.

www.thepatrabali.com

www.dekuta.com

Kuta Seaview Hotel

Grand Whiz Hotel

Located immediately across the road from the beach, Kuta Seaview Resort is conveniently located in the heart of Kuta and combines the traditional flavour of Bali with a stylish modern feel in all rooms. Add to that the lush gardens encompassing 57 rooms (rates start from US$210). With an oasis-like pool, a DJ at sunset, the cocktail bar and adjacent Vivo Rosso restaurant you know you are in good hands. The

The Grand Whiz Hotel Kuta on Jalan Kartika Plaza has to be a top accommodation choice combining modern design and comfort with affordability. With room-only rates starting from Rp.600,000, and up to a million a night for the deluxe room (inclusive of breakfast) and a free 15-minute welcome massage, it’s easy to aclimatise to Bali-Time and start your holiday as soon as you arrive. The central location – only a


Le MĂŠridien at Jimbaran.

The 101 Hotel.

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staying power

Villa DeDaun.

Eden Hotel.

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stroll away from Waterbom, shopping, and the beach – make it easy to whiz off for all the fun and action. www.grand.whizhotels.com/kuta Eden Hotel Eden is a funky centrally located hotel of 277 rooms with two pools, spacious restaurant and a young, fresh feel of simple clean design to its rooms. Think bold colours, gentle lighting, subtle Zen flavor with comfy beds and all the conveniences reflecting the hotel’s motto of “all the luxury at budget prices”. Eden is on Jalan Kartika near Waterbom, and a stone’s throw from the heart of Kuta, the beach and the nightlife of Jalan Legian. For those who seek an affordable yet clean place to stay in Bali, Eden Hotel rates high on the list, with room-only rates from as little as Rp.650,000 (the huge breakfast buffet is worth the small additional cost). www.kuta-bali.myedenhotels.com Maxi’s Hotel This charming 50-room hotel’s rates start from just Rp.475,000. The rooms are spacious, charismatic with a gentle boutique style touch to them. The restaurant, bar, pool, meeting rooms, as well as tour services, are all attended to with that warm and friendly Balinese hospitality. Maxi’s Hotel is a great choice for those wanting to keep accommodation costs low. Located between Poppies I and II off Jalan Legian, Maxi’s has all the shopping and nightlife of Kuta at its doorstep. www.maxi-hotel.com Harris Hotel Kuta With four hotels dotted across Kuta and Tuban, it is obvious that the fresh and young concept of the Harris Hotels hits the mark with travellers from everywhere. Promising a relaxing stay at affordable prices, rooms start from Rp.718,000 including buffet breakfast and free airport pick-up. Harris offers all the bells and whistles of higher priced hotels only at budget rates in a convenient location. Familyfriendly, easy to find and only a stroll from all that draws visitors to the hub of Kuta, Harris Hotels make for a great holiday choice. Choose from their Tuban, River View, Raya Kuta or Beach Front properties when you are next in town. www.kuta-bali.harrishotels.com

whole décor, feel and atmosphere will have you feeling like you are at home on a surfboard. Located in Jalan Sriwijaya near Kuta Plaza, this surf-oriented hotel is not quite beach front, but has all the goods for a perfect stay – comfy beds, mini-bar, Wi-Fi, satellite TV, balconies overlooking the pool and insane package deals that include everything from free airport pick-up to adrenaline-pumping activities. Try the Surf Holiday promo at Rp.3,650,000 which includes three nights deluxe accommodation, a double surf lesson for two, free shuttle, welcome bevy, and discounts on surf gear. Standard rooms start from Rp.470,000. www.blisssurferhotel.com Aston Hotel Kuta With rooms starting from Rp.798,000 including breakfast the Aston Hotel on Jalan Wana Segara is an affordable accommodation choice boasting all the comfort conveniences one could expect. The hotel features modern design with free Wi-Fi and air conditioning, onsite spa, kids’ club, a massive pool and a rooftop lounge bar. Located only five minutes from the airport and a stroll from the beach, the Aston will make your stay a relaxing experience. www.astonbalihotels.com Grandma’s Hotel Now here is an innovative hotel concept that really works for the budget traveller. Opened in 2012 Grandma’s is a two-star property offering 111 simple and cozily designed rooms with a lobby and café that blends the modern with the rustic. The rooms offer everything from comfy beds with nice linen, security, air conditioning, hot showers, multi-channel TV and safety box, and in-room phones all starting from just Rp.330,000 a night. Grandma’s is located on the corner of Jalan Legian and Jalan Sriwijaya, Legian, and is within easy walking distance of all the fun. www.grandmashotels.com Satriya Cottages Located at the beach end of Poppies II, Satriya Cottages has been a highly regarded home for holidaymakers for the past 25 years. Expanding from an original 24 cottage-style rooms, Satriya now offers a range of standard, superior and deluxe rooms ranging from Rp.700,000 to Rp.1.65 million (buffet breakfast and Wi-Fi included).

Bliss Surfers Hotel

Spread over an expansive site with two garden-framed pools, two bars and restaurants, Satriya’s rooms offer great comfort only 50 metres from the beach.

Whether you are a surfer or a landlubber, at Bliss Surfer Hotel the

www.satriyacottages.com

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feature

Andrea R. takes a wander around one of bali's natural gems in bedugul. photos: lucky 8.

The Botanical Garden – otherwise known as Kebun Raya Eka Karya – located in the heart of Bali’s Bedugul, is the first botanical garden to have been established by the Indonesian government. The garden is a renowned center of excellence in the field of plant biodiversity research and biodiversity conservation, and facilitates more than 8,500 different species of plants, including plants from mountain areas of Eastern Indonesia, Bali, Nusa Tenggara, Sulawesi, Maluku and Papua, as well as many other regions throughout the globe. In 1958, senior Balinese officials sent a proposal to what is now called the Centre for Biological Research (Indonesian Institute of Sciences) to establish a botanical garden that would have a research institute as well as a recreational park area. The location was selected and the process of transforming a reforested area in the highlands of the village of Bedugul began. On July 15th 1959, the Bali Botanic Garden was officially established – covering 50 hectares of land and situated at the altitude of 1,250 to 1,400 metres above sea level. Since then, the botanic garden has had a few hurdles to overcome. Because of unstable political times in 1965, development and maintenance was discontinued for five years, after which came a period of five years of rehabilitation and expansion. On April 30th 1975 the Botanic Garden opened up again to the public – with an increase in area to 129.2 hectares, the garden included even more diverse species than before. The name Eka Karya, meaning “the first work”, was given to this particular botanic garden as recognition of the newly established Republic of Indonesia and is one of the four famous botanical gardens of Indonesia. Since the three others – Bogor Botanical Gardens, Cibodas Botanical Garden, and Purwodadi Botanical Garden – are from the colonial era, Eka Karya is the first to have

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been built after the independence of the Republic was proclaimed. Today, the gardens have seen an increase in area to 157.5 hectares. The institution offers facilities to aid and support plant research and conservation and preservation of endangered species, including a herbarium, seed bank, library, glasshouses, nursery, and a vast plant database. The Cactus Garden Set in a glass dome, this garden houses various kinds of cacti, or plants that belong to the cactaceae family. Cactus, as we know, is a desert plant that usually thrives in hot, dry climates. Despite the fact that Bali has a tropical climate, Eka Karya has created a 500 square metre greenhouse which prevents excessive humidity, and houses a collection of 68 different types of cactus – some of which can grow up to five meters. The Aquatic Garden Next to the cactus garden, there is a seemingly non-descript pond in the midst of a spectacular array of other plants. But don’t be fooled by first impressions – the aquatic garden has an excellent collection of water plants arranged in six terraced ponds, including the iconic lotus and enchanting blooming water lilies that form the heart of this little garden. The Orchid Garden There is a reason why orchids – with their many different “faces” – are famous and sought after throughout the world . . . they are exquisitely beautiful. Which is why this garden is one of the main attractions at Eka Karya.


Fancy a punnet?

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feature

Swing low.

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With an astounding variety of colours, shapes and formations (such as alien face-like buds), orchids are beautiful pieces of natural art. The Usada Garden More than 300 kinds of medicinal plants are displayed in this 1,600 square metre garden, hence the name usada which means “health” in Indonesian. The garden is there for the cultivation of, and education about, medicinal plants. The Usada Garden has a collection of plants from all over Bali and beside each there is an explanation board with information about the uses of the plants in Balinese traditional medicine. Cyathea Garden Walking through the Cyathea (fern) Garden gives the impression that one has travelled back to prehistoric times. Besides being a bit eerie, and expecting a jumping, spitting or hissing dinosaur to leap at you when you are enraptured by the beautiful formations of these ferns – climbing and twisting in geometrical shapes – this part of Eka Karya is absolutely stunning. The Rose Garden The Rose Garden, though not as large in area as some of the other gardens, is nonetheless a beautiful sight. The roses come in colours of red, pink, maroon, orange, yellow, and even a green rose. The green rose is the most unique rose in the garden and is a hybrid of two species (rosa chinensis and rosa gigantean) . . . doomed to sterility due to the inability of the stamen to develop and grow on its own. For that reason, the green rose can only be cultivated through grafts and cuttings, which makes its presence so exceptional. The Begonia Garden This garden cultivates more than 200 different types of begonias – both natural and exotic species, “typical” Indonesian begonia, as well as species from many other countries across the globe. Begonias are widely known as an ornamental flower and, as such, come in many different variations, from simple to the more lavish and exotic forms. The Panca Yadnya Garden If you are interested in learning about the rituals performed in Bali, this is definitely the garden for you. The name of this garden derives from the concept

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feature Panca Yadnya from, which means “five sacrifices”. Balinese Hindus believe there are five sacrifices to be made for the reciprocations to the gods (Dewa Yadnya), the ancestors (Pitra Yadnya), teachers (Rsi Yadnya), human beings (Manusia Yadnya), and the guardians of the universe (Bhuta Yadnya). The garden consists of plants that are used by the Balinese Hindus in the Yadnya ceremonies, including frangipani, cempaka, cananga and many, many more. Visit the garden and ask the staff to explain in further detail, as they would be more than happy to shed some light on one of their most meaningful ceremonial traditions. The Gymnos Garden The word gymnosperm derives from Greek and means “naked seed”; hence the species included in this plant family all have their seedpods exposed, such as pines, araucaria and so on. Most of Eka Karya’s collection is imported from other countries, except for some which are native to the Bedugul hills. Temples There are three temples worth taking a look at on your trip to the gardens, namely Giri Putri, Teratai Bang and Batu Meringgit. Teratai Bang temple is built near a sulfur source which emits odour around the area. Batu Meringgit temple is actually an archeological site dating back to the megalithic era, combining both Hindu and Buddhist culture and depictions. For adventure seekers . . . If nature walks through narrow winding tracks of majestic scenery with shrubs, trees, flowers and ferns of all shapes, sizes and colours just don’t do it for you, if the soccer field in the middle of the garden – which is always available to the public unless there are special events being hosted – still doesn’t do it for you . . . Maybe a stop at Bali Treetop Adventure Park will. Bali Treetop Adventure Park is located inside Eka Karya and has been a part of the outbound activities offered there for more than eight years. Seventy-two treetop challenges – from kiddie runs to tummy butterfly-inducing zip lining and the more challenging Tarzan jumps, spider webs and suspension bridges are sure to provide a fun time for the whole family. Seven different customised and original circuits are designed with graded difficulty levels. As you progress from tree to tree the challenge increases. Circuits are adapted for adults and children from four years old, with varying heights from two to 20 meters. Each visitor group is assigned its own specially trained patrol guide who will explain and assist on the trail, providing encouragement or a short cut to get down if fear should set it. The wires are all carefully monitored and all equipment complies with European standards. And just so you can enjoy without worries of causing any havoc to nature all circuit platforms are held in place using an innovative compression system to protect trees from any damage.

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Kids and nature go hand-in-hand.

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Creative, co-ordinated, unadulterated fun.

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SPIRITOFADVENTURE Andrea R gets high in Bedugul . . .

I’m standing, on the verge of jumping from a tree. I am eight years old again, all the kids are yelling at me, making fun of me, calling me names. I have the rope between my legs, clenched tightly with both hands, butterflies buzzing around in my stomach with anticipation and I want to jump more than I have ever wanted to do anything in my life. But I can’t. I just can’t. It’s like someone is holding me back, there’s a magnet attached to my body which is refusing to let me go. I count to myself, one, two, three . . . Nothing. My god, am I this scared, this pathetic? What’s wrong with me? All the other kids can do it! But I’m not eight. There are no children yelling. The ground is not one metre away. It is 11 metres away. I am 26. And I am suddenly transported back in time to an elementary school playground in Norway. What the . . .? I tell myself how irrational this fear is, I am attached to a harness and there is indeed a lovely tour guide following me through the whole process. These images I see in my head are not real; these feelings are absolutely absurd and I cannot believe I have not progressed since the age of eight. All these thoughts surge through my mind in a matter of nano-seconds as I’m trying to work up the courage to take a leap of faith, to do the Tarzan jump of the red circuit, which is the second to highest level of the circuits at the Adventure Park inside the Botanical Gardens. I look down, as rain is still dripping on my forehead, more slowly now, onto the ground, which seems like kilometres away from where I’m standing. My tour guide, Nyoman, seems to be mouthing words silently into this space I am in. I can’t hear a

single thing he says, but from his body language I understand that he is calmly encouraging me to just lean forward and hold on to the rope; there is no danger, I just have to jump and then catch the net and climb up to the next challenge. I laugh and say, “I’m okay”, which I always do when I want to cry, and try to brush it off. I can do this, I can jump. But the clock is ticking, I feel like I’ve been standing on this treetop platform for lifetimes, the pressure is rising in my chest and I am overcome by a feeling of failure and defeat. Yet, I want to do this. I want to jump, I want to be bigger than my childhood self, braver, stronger, more resilient. I look down again, at the ground. It seems to be moving farther and farther away each second that passes . . . interesting how fear can affect us human beings. Nyoman asks me if I am takut? Scared? “Yes”, I say. “Okay no problem, I go up to the net and I will catch you. You okay to jump but not grab the net?” Next thing I know, I am jumping, flying, soaring through the air – feeling more free than ever . . . and Nyoman catches me so I don’t have to worry by the time I reach the net some 20 meters across the field. I laugh nervously as I hold on to the net and Nyoman is holding onto me and my harness and as I begin to explain myself he cuts me off and tells me this happens to a lot of people, and not to worry – not to feel ashamed. In retrospect, I am so grateful for having such a supportive and non-judgmental tour guide throughout this experience. I did go on to the next level, the Black Circuit, and jumped on my own (without catching the net, which meant I didn’t get to go on the next challenge, but hey, I jumped by myself ). I had such a blast at Bali Tree Top Adventure Park, despite my childhood fears resurfacing, I feel revitalized and I can’t wait to go there again and bring my friends along.

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out

It’s not often you meet a guy like Bob Koke. When I did, in 1993, he was already an old man, but that didn’t stop him from opening a bottle of Johnny Walker he’d bought at the duty free on his way through the airport at Ngurah Rai. He was here to scatter the ashes of his wife into the sea off Kuta Beach.

THE LOCAL Tony Stanton tells the story of Bob and Louise Koke who opened the first hotel in Kuta.

Bob and Louise had been married for 50 years. He spoke about how they had met and fallen into an affair, eloping from Hollywood to a Bali that was just being discovered. I knew about Bob because I read his wife’s book Our Hotel In Bali, about how they came to the island and started a dream life running the first hotel on Kuta Beach. The Kokes had heard about Bali from other early pioneers – various famous people who had visited, among them President Franklin Roosevelt’s son, and Charlie Chaplin. After taking a tour around the island to the usual (even then) spots like Besakih, Tanah Lot and so on, they stopped at Kuta Beach. There was nothing there except for a coconut grove, white sand, and breaking waves that Bob instantly knew were good for surfing. He had learned to surf in Hawaii while working on a picture (he worked for MGM) and knew that these were as good as anywhere. Both of them instantly fell in love with Kuta Beach . . . Louise with the romantic idea of having a hotel by the sea, Bob because he saw the surf. Soon, after some negotiations, a land deal was made and they cleared a space and began building. Local materials were used: alang-alang roofs, bamboo and wood, and several beachside bungalows were built just back from the sand, and the doors opened at the first ever Kuta Beach Hotel. Guests started to arrive. At night they would have Balinese dances and rijstafel dinners in the gardens, often joined by diplomats, lords, regional rajas and other important people from near and far. They also had the only telephone line that ran from the hotel all the way to Denpasar. During the day Bob would tend to the daily management duties with Louise and then go surf, sometimes offering his board to locals and guests to ride as well. He had brought with him a quiver of wooden Hawaiian-style surfboards, some were Alaia – short, flat and rounded – while others were long and heavy and took three people to lift down to the water. None of them had the luxury of a fin but they were most probably the first boards that had been in the surf at Kuta, just as Bob was the first surfer. As the Kuta Beach Hotel grew in popularity so did news of a looming World War II. After living the dream for about five years the war arrived with news from the

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Dutch Council that the Japanese were advancing towards Dutch-controlled Bali. Bob refused to believe it - I think because his beach lifestyle was so idyllic. The council gave him a bulldozer to build war gutters and tear up the recently built landing strip so it couldn’t be used, which Bob did . . . he also ended up using it to make a small golf course for his hotel. Pearl Harbour was bombed and soldiers began arriving and building gun emplacements on Kuta Beach. On the advice of the American vice-consul, the Kokes finally left Bali on the last possible boat out. The story didn’t end there. Following the outbreak of WWII one of Bob’s friends suggested he should work at an intelligence branch of the CIA because he could speak Malay and Indonesian and knew the region. He became a lieutenant and was sent back to Indonesia as commander of a submarine and ended up landing agents on Kuta Beach. Can you believe that? There was this guy named Humpy, an Americanised Indonesian who was a spy working on their side. The submarine would arrive and Humpy would swim to Kuta Beach with a frogman suit on and a radio that he would hide in the bushes or bury and report back to the Americans on what the Japanese were doing. Humpy did get caught, but managed to talk his way out of the mess and actually ended up working for the Japanese as a driver for the head of command. He became pivotal in providing information to the Americans. So Bob cruised around in his submarine for the duration collecting intelligence and then, as the war came to a close with V-Day, he was the highest ranking American commander in Asia and was the one who took surrender from the Japanese commander in Singapore. When the war came to an end he finally got back to Bali to where his hotel should have been . . . everything had been dismantled, the whole hotel was just a grassed area again. Despondent, he turned to leave when something caught his eye . . . “It was in the corner,” he told me. “Standing there like some beacon to a bygone age. It was one of our daffodils from Holland which we had planted, and it was up.” The only reason he’d known where his hotel had stood was because of those daffodils, which he had planted with Louise all those years before.


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