Lovina Beach at dawn
Lovina Beach (or often simply Lovina) is a coastal area on the northwestern side of the island of Bali, Indonesia. The coastal strip stretches from 5 km west of the city of Singaraja to 15 km west. Singaraja is the seat of Buleleng Regency. The Lovina area contains the small villages (from east to west) of Pemaron, Tukad Mungga, Anturan, Banyualit, Kalibukbuk, Kaliasem and Temukus. It is becoming more popular with tourists but remains far quieter than the tourist hotspots of the island's south side.
Popular activities for visitors include early-morning boat trips off the coast to see dolphins.
Around the 1950s, Anak Agung Pandji Tisna, had traveled to several countries in Europe and Asia. He stayed several weeks in Bombay (now Mumbai). What attracted him most was the life of the people in India. By observing the people's way of life in the area, he got the thought and the outlook for Bali, especially the development of social welfare in the Buleleng region. While he was in Bombay, Panji Tisna saw a place that was beautifully laid out as a spot for leisure on the beach. The land had much similarity with what he owned on Kampung Baru Beach – Buleleng – North Bali, which also was between two rivers. Pandji Tisna was inspired to create a resort like that. The land he already had in hand.
Returning from abroad in 1953, Anak Agung Pandji Tisna immediately began to build on his land, a cottage called Guesthouse "LOVINA". The place was designed for the "travellers" or tourists for a vacation. The guesthouse was furnished with three bedrooms and a small restaurant near the sea. Some business observers claimed that the plan of Panji Tisna would not work as expected. They thought it was too early to make business of such a kind on a secluded beach like Tukad Cebol. Local cultural observers stated that "Lovina" was a foreign word, not Balinese. Furthermore, there is no letter "v" in Balinese alphabet. In 1959 Anak Agung Panji Tisna sold the Lovina Guesthouse to his relative, Anak Agung Ngurah Sentanu, 22 years, who became the owner and manager of Lovina. Business was going pretty well. However, there were no travellers or tourists. Only a few of Pandji Tisna’s friends came from America and Europe, as well as the regional government officials and businessmen from Singaraja for a vacation. On special days such as Sundays and holidays, like Galungan and Kuningan, many people, including students, however did come to enjoy the natural atmosphere on the beach of Tukad Cebol.
"Karma" in the life of Lovina
Singaraja was the capital city for Bali - Lombok, and Nusa Kecil, maintaining a steady state as a center of government and commerce activities for a very long time. However the conditions suddenly changed. In early 1960, the capital moved to Denpasar. Singaraja was left as a deserted city. Construction activities and trade plummeted in Singaraja. It needed years to get back to normal conditions in North Bali. The young manager, Ngurah Sentanu, had the worst experience in running the "Lovina Guesthouse". But he accepted the task and mandate from Panji Tisna. What the business analysts had foreseen proved to be correct. However, was there really something wrong with Lovina?
The beginning of tourism in Bali
Bali Beach Hotel in Sanur was built by Sukarno in 1963, and boosted tourism in Bali. Prior to it only three hotels existed on the island. Construction of hotels and restaurants began to spread throughout Bali. Tourism further increased on Bali after the Ngurah Rai International Airport opened in 1970. Buleleng programmed so that the government encouraged the tourism sector as one of the mainstays for economic progress and social welfare. In the meantime, the spotlight focused on the role of Lovina in the field of tourism, emerging pros and cons.
North Bali starts to move
In the Eastern part of Buleleng regency, the natural fresh water pool of Yeh Sanih, in the village of Bukti was extensively renovated and rose as a rival to Lovina. The development of Yeh Sanih got more support than Lovina both by the government officials. That was because Yeh Sanih was indigenous. Meanwhile, the travel agents choose Lovina, as it was demanded by most of the tourists.
Lovina banned officially
Development of tourism in Bali increased rapidly in the 1980s. The government wanted to form tourist areas like Kuta and Sanur. In the Buleleng district, Kalibukbuk and Air Sanih were formed as tourist areas. The Governor of Bali wanted to show the roots of the Balines culture by using the name of the original villages on the tourist facilities. He also said that the use of "Lovina" should be discontinued. The tourist businesses, therefore, began using the local names like Angsoka, Nirvana, Lila Cita, Banyualit, Kalibukbuk, Aditya, Ayodia, and other local names. Meanwhile, Anak Agung Panji Tisna built a hotel called "Tasik Madu", which means "Sea of Honey", 100 meters west of Lovina. It formed an alternative destination, without the presence of the name Lovina. Once renovated, the "Lovina Guesthouse" opened again, using an alias name, "Permata Cottage". Eversince, "Lovina" locked safely by the owner, Anak Agung Ngurah Sentanu.
Hidden for 10 years, Lovina came back
Lovina was already known as a tourist destination in North Bali. Tourist companies demanded the presence of Lovina. The historical Lovina that had been called Permata Cottages took back its original name Lovina Beach Hotel. In 1990 Lovina covered not less than six native beaches in two different District areas. In Buleleng District, there was the Binaria Beach in Kalibukbuk village, the Banyualit Beach in Banyualit village, the Kubu Gembong Beach of Anturan / Tukadmungga village, the Hepi Beach of Tukadmungga village, and the Pemaron Beach in Pemaron village. In the Banjar District, there was the Kampung Baru /Tukad Cebol Beach in Kaliasem village, which is the birthplace of Lovina, and the Temukus coastal village. All six beaches/villages combined and called themselves Lovina Beach. Meanwhile, the official name was still Kalibukbuk Tourism Area.
Lovina and the community
In the beginning, Lovina was rejected. However, Lovina became a blessing to many people. The dream of Anak Agung Pandji Tisna had materialized at last. The Lovina Beach Hotel, still exists.
The Meaning of Lovina
One might think that "Love" and "Ina" should be read as short for "Love Indonesia". This was not, however, the intention of Panji Tisna. The term "INA" stands for the Indonesian contingent or group of athletes for the Asian Games 1963. Lovina, however, was founded in 1953. According to Panji Tisna, “Lovina” has a philosophical meaning, it is a mixture of the two-syllable words "Love" and "Ina". The word "Love" from English and "Ina", which is a Balinese word meaning "Mother". The meaning of "Lovina", according to Anak Agung Panji Tisna, therefore is literally "Love Mom" or more symbolically; "Love Mother Earth".
- Adrian Vickers: Bali. A Paradise Created, Periplus 1989, ISBN 0-945971-28-1
Lovina travel guide from Wikivoyage
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