The long-awaited Greaten of a world-class manna resort on Gili Gede marina Bay project is now underway. The marina is the inspiraton of marine tourism expert and Captain, Raymond La Fontalne, who has spent years petitioning Indonesian law makers and tourism authorities to support marine tourism in Indonesia.
With more than 17,000 islands in the Indonesian archipelago, encouraging yachting and marine tourism makes sense for the country, not only for increasing tourism but also as a way of bringing economic prosperity to island communities, Raymond told us when we visited last week.
“Indonesia is Aslana — the link between Australia and Asia — and needs to be developed as one of the major sailing destinations In the world, alongside the Caribbean, the Mediterranean, and the Pacific.
“Lombok is an ideal location and the convenient mid-way point between Australia and other popular sailing destinations such as Thailand” He explained. His work over the past decade has finally paid off with the Indonesian government not only supporting the construction of Lombok Marina on Gili Gede but also making important changes to laws to encourage marine tourism in the country.
Now that he has the green light, construction is underway on Lombok Marina — located on the southern tip of the big island of Gili Gede in the beautiful southwest of Lombok.
The location of the marina is ideal, with deep protected waters surrounding thirteen pristine and undeveloped islands, reminiscent of the Caribbean. This means the marina can offer safe anchorage year-round for visiting boats.
The village of Tembowong on the mainland of Lombok Is only a short 10-minute boat ride away, giving sailors easy access to other areas on Lombok and the International Airport.
Once completed, Lombok Marina will be an integrated marina resort in Indonesia featuring an international standard yacht club, being developed by Raymond’s company, PT Marindo.
The resort includes an elevated restaurant with stunning island views, a large resort swimming pool, a beachfront bar. Spa, mid-range accommodation as part of the resort complex, and 24 luxury apartments on the hill with views across the southwestern Gilis S Bangko Bangko.
The marina boasts a 110m concrete wharf (already constructed) with 200m of floating pontoons (under construction) and secure moorings for 60 vessels. Facilities include long- and short-term moorings for visiting boats, fuel supply, fresh water, 24- hour security, provisioning, boat detailing, specialized repairs and services, rubbish disposal, and all other services expected from a world-class marina.
The Gili Gede marina bay project will offer amenities to visiting sailors such as toilets and bathrooms, laundry facilities, WiFi, and electricity hook up to their boats, as well as assistance with customs clearance and immigration.
We visited Raymond last week to take a closer look at the construction of the mooring pontoons of the Gili Gede marina Bay project, which is taking place at the workshop of PT Marine in Pantai Cemara, near Lembar Harbour.
Owner of PT Marine, Steve Knudson, is a precision engineer who operates a marine engineering facility for boat building and repairs and has been instrumental in the construction of the pontoons. 200m of the pontoons, which are European-designed and manufactured in China, arrived in Lombok, Kuta Mandalika in 22 sections weighing over 16 tonnes. Steve, Raymond, and their local team then had the massive job of assembling the sections.
Once assembled, the pontoons were moved to the waters of the estuary at Cemara and towed by sea to be finally put In place at the Gili Gede Marina Bay Project. Lombok Marina will be operational by 1 April 2018 and will celebrate its official opening on 22 October when it will host the Pacific Island Rally, the World ARC Rally, and the inaugural Presidents Cup.
President Jokowi, who has supported Raymond in his drive for marine tourism In Indonesia, will officiate at the opening of the President’s Cup and launch the one-week regatta of sailing around Lombok.