Thursday, November 13, 2008

Indonesia's surfing development for PON

Kim Bradley
Kim Bradley was known as the surfing sport activist in Indonesia, specially Bali at the 70's and now he talks about the government support of the development of surfing in this country. Kim believes that if surfing in Indonesia was to progress and it must have support from the government. In the past, former Bali governor Ida Bagus Mantra said “ Surfing is just in Bali” but now surfing is all over Indonesia because all areas have waves suitable for surfing.
Now that it is recognized that many provinces in Indonesia have waves good for surfing Kim believes that each province should have a surfing club or association that also coordinates with the tourism department to promote surfing. If every province had a surfing club it would be much easier for surfing to be recognized as a national sport which could then be included in the National Sport Competition (PON)
The government has started supporting surfing now as seen by competitions such as the Bupati Cup held at Canggu last year. The Quiksilver contest at Dompu was also supported by the Bupati as well as several other contests. As we concluded our chat Kim said “ 30 years ago there was noone surfing in Indonesia and now everyone ‘dances on the waves’, hopefully surfing can be recognized as a national sport and be included in National Sport Competition (PON)”

Bli Kacrut
This local Balinese senior surfer also talks about support from the government for the development of surfing in Indonesia that has the same idea with Kim Bradley. Surfing in Indonesia has developed rapidly, as seen by the number of contests now held in Indonesia which is also a contributing factor. Support from the government is also vital as the main supporters of surfing at the present time is the Surfing Industry. Bli Kacrut thinks that surfing must be included as a sport in PON (National Sport Competition) because there are now 7 provinces in Indonesia with waves suitable for surfing competitions. Almost all areas in Indonesia have waves good for surfing and clubs could be formed that report back to the national sport organization, so that they can be recognized and develop more like they have in Bali. Surfing also adds to the tourism potential in all areas. Perhaps surfing will be more recognized in Indonesia this year because Bali is hosting the “Asian Beach Games 2008” for the first time in October. Indonesia
has also chosen several athletes to compete in the games.
Bli Kacrut hopes that next year surfing will be included in Pre PON and he said that Indonesian people, especially surfers, love the beach and ocean so much. It’s feels just right to include surfing in the National Games Event like PON (National Sport Competition)

The Cape Town

From Devil’s Peak (Afrikaans Duiwelspiek), the site of the legendary smoke-off between the devil and the Dutch colonial, you can see forever. Van Hunks, as the story goes, unwisely accepted a pipe smoking challenge from a cloven-hoof stranger, puffed up an enormous cloud of smoke and was never seen again.
Looking out from the peak, just to the left, you’ll notice the harbor, the sea a sheet of blue made stern by the industrial gray of ships and cranes. The city bowl, its center a neat grid, lies between the harbor and the mountain. Straight ahead, as far as the eye can see, you may trace the beginnings of the Winelands, the outline of a distant mountain range.

You probably won’t dwell on the dull bit to the far right—a muddle of buildings that appear to be the size of Monopoly houses on a vast expanse of sandy land: the notorious Cape Flats, where gangs carve up the streets. And tucked beneath the mountain, the leafy suburbs—deep green in an otherwise yellow-brown picture—attest to Cape Town’s micro climates: the weather may be fine in town, drizzling in the suburbs, howling with wind on the fringes of the city bowl.

The Cape Town best view was not an easy place to know. Like a jigsaw puzzle that doesn’t quite fit, the pieces together form something incongruous; a city that is more than the sum of its parts. When its imagine which always recasts the familiar in a different light, seems an illusion: the mountains, the sea, the almost embarrassing prettiness of it all. Table Mountain—the city’s iconic symbol—no longer blends into the background: It demands to be admired; the great stony mountain face, the impressive regularity of the tabletop flanked by peaks on either side.
But Cape Town’s beauty is pockmarked. Sunsets seen from the white sands of Clifton are underscored by the iron sheeted shacks that line the road from the airport. Lush forests are punctuated by buildings with peeling paint in the Main Road, or by the laundry suspended from the wire fences along the highway where homeless people sleep beneath a bridge.

Living in Cape Town entails a tacit knowledge of an environment that doesn’t quite make sense. It’s like seeing your face as a Picasso painting, or being inside a Buñuel film. It’s a temperamental city; there’s always something different around each corner, a sense of never being entirely certain. Always color, always light. This changing landscape—geographical and cultural —combined with an extraordinary natural beauty that even the locals never tire of, makes Cape Town an unusual destination. In Cape Town, you’re always somewhere between the mountain and the deep blue sea. That was an interesting town to visit in Southern of Africa which also known for its best waves in J-bay (Jeffreys bay).

Rich travelers get cold feet

Financial crisis chills holiday mood at ultra-rich Swiss ski resort. Russian tourists are making cancellations everyday, and the reason they give is the financial crisis.
At the suite-only Carlton Hotel, which charges up to US$6,800 ($10,000) per room during the winter peak season, the reservations department is getting disturbing news daily.

The hotel's general manager, Mr Christopher Cox, said: 'We are getting Russian cancellations every day and they are telling us that the financial crisis is the main reason.' In St Moritz, where one in every four hotels is five-star and where pop stars, princes and presidents count among regular skiers, tourism industry players admit that the global economic slowdown is chilling demand. The trend corresponds with findings from a recent study commissioned by Italy's luxury goods producers' association indicating that even the wealthiest consumers, once thought to be immune to economic slowdowns, are cutting back on spending.
Mr Cox said the dropped rooms at the Carlton are being snapped up by others on waiting list, but he admitted that 'extra revenues', such as those from food and beverage and luxury boutiques, are expected to slide. He said: 'Guests who used to order two pizzas with a bottle of wine that cost 8,000 Swiss francs ($10,200) may not do that this year. I think most people will still come on holiday, but I don't think we will get the same amount of extra revenues.'

Russians make up the biggest group of customers by nationality and account for three in 10 of the hotel's guests during the winter ski season. They are among the most lavish spenders.
However, a slew of bad economic news has dampened consumer sentiment in Russia. Since posting record highs in May, the two main stock markets in Russia had lost about three-quarters of their value, slipping on a plunge in oil prices and financial turmoil.

Not just the Russians, but Americans and British - the two other main tourist groups here - also appear to be tightening their belts. Mr Dieter Bonner, a member of the board at Engadin St Moritz, which runs area ski lifts and mountain trains, said he had also heard of cancellations at other hotels, adding that 'there are Americans who aren't coming because of the crisis'.
But he remained optimistic about the winter holiday season, saying that this 'can be an opportunity' for St Moritz to attract more local consumers.

Crisis spending
Mr Bonner said: 'In a crisis, people tend to stay in their country. This could be a chance for us to get our local tourists to rediscover Switzerland.' He was, however, concerned about the effect of the Swiss franc, which last week hit a historic high against the Euro. Compared to a year ago, the franc has gained about 11.6 per cent. 'The strong franc could be a bigger handicap than the crisis,' he said, as it could drive Swiss consumers to spend in neighbouring France, Germany or Italy instead.
Mr Eugen Arpagaus, who heads the tourism and economic bureau of canton Graubuenden where St Moritz is located, agreed that the sudden currency swing could have a negative impact on consumption here. He estimated that a 15 to 20 per cent gain in the franc could translate to a fall of about 5 per cent in overnight stays. But for Mr Arpagaus, the main worry is the length of the crisis. He said: 'What worries me more is how long this crisis will last. People will still go on vacations for now, but if the crisis goes on for three years or five years, then we could really see an impact.'
The chief executive officer of Graubuenden Tourism, Mr Gaudenz Thoma, had the same prognosis, saying the effect of the crisis would most likely show up only in the summer.
He said: 'The cancellations now could help us overcome the problem of overbooking. I don't think we would suffer tremendously in winter, because we are strong in winter. But if the crisis lasts, it could really hit us in the summer.'
---edited from the New Paper_November