I would not recommend that you stay at the Grand Aquila Hotel, which is in the middle of a tense and long-running labour dispute. In October 2008, 137 of the workers at the hotel were terminated from their employment beacuse they formed a trade union. All they wanted was to negotiate better wages and conditions, instead they were kicked out from the hotel and have had to live without any income for nearly a year. There is a permanent protest outside the hotel, the workers have set up a union tent which partially blocks the entrance gate and shows support for their struggle from around the world.
The workers have also established a 'Solidarity Cafe' next to the hotel. A place to hang out and show your support for their cause. Now this is worth a visit! Great food, and reasonable beer. You can find it at:
Bale Juleha (union meeting point)
Pujasera Pasteur Complex
Jl. Dr. Djundjunan 123
Bandung 40173, Indonesia
If you go to the cafe, take a few minutes to see the workers in the tent too. They will be pleased to see you and more than happy to share their story.
Having a feast in the paddy field
I guess this is amongst the most visited restaurant by the tourist as well as the local included.
During my 2nd trip to Bandung together with my mom & hubby, we finally managed to squeeze into the itinerary to have our lunch here. And wala...we spent our time there for about 3 hours; most of the time taking pictures & enjoying the scenery.
Really love the place. The food was great & served by pretty petite Indonesian ladies, the surrounding beautiful & the weather was good as well.
We chose to have our lunch in one of the open gazebo (saung as its called here) near the paddy field instead of inside the restaurant itself. Afterall, u travelled to experience something different!. Some saung are built just by the lake within the area. Take off your shoes as you climb up onto the saung. The saung comes in different sizes that will suit you & your partner or the whole big party - well to a certain limit of course! The small saung can comfortably fit in 2 to 4 people.
There is a Japanese-like table where people will sit on the provided floor cushions. As you ready to order, you only need to use the traditional PA system called kentongan. I can only compare it to what we normally watched in movies where the lady/lord of the house ring the bell just to call the servant to the dining table!
Major parts of the restaurant compound are planted with paddy but it is only for decoration. No rice is harvested from them. Sounds like a waste but at least we as the people from new generation can at least gain this invaluable experience of having our meals surrounded by the greenery of the paddy fields.
Do spend the time to venture around. We tremendously enjoyed ourself just by having our lunch here & enjoying the scenery afterwards. Here, curiousity will benefit you of bumping into the beutiful scenery of the resorts that are built near the man-made lake!
Check ot the pictures to see them for yourself.
Note: Pic 1, 2 & 3 courtesy of my hubby - Haris - There are variety of dishes in the menu. But it is recommended to tried the local Sundanese food serves here.
We enjoyed the grilled chicken very much. Dont forget to have the local raw salad known as lalapan to balance your food intake. Give the fried brinjal with chilie paste a try as well.
The oxtail soup as known locally as sup buntut comes highly recommended.
As for drinks, me & mom really enjoy our glass of Avocado juice!
INDONESIAN EXOTIC FRUITS
SALAK or snakeskin fruit is a species of Indonesia palm tree native. The shiny, dark brown, scaly skin can be peeled off and inside there may be two or three irregular sized segments. Rub off the membrane covering each segment and eat the crisp cream-colored flesh. The fruit inside consists of three lobes, each containing a large inedible seed. The lobes look like, and have the consistency of, peeled garlic cloves. The taste is usually sweet and acidic, but its apple-like texture can vary from very dry and crumbly.
BELIMBING, the star fruit or carambola, is believed by many Indonesians to have qualities promoting good health. It is a pale yellow fruit with ridges that form a star shape when the fruit is sliced across. Belimbing are crunchy, and have a slightly tart, acidic, sweet taste. JERUK. Indonesia also has many varieties of citrus fruit (jeruk). The largest is jeruk Bali, pomelo or shaddock, which is a seasonal fruit. It is larger than a grapefruit and has green skin and a thick whitish membrane, which is peeled or cut off to expose segments of pink or yellowish pulp. Remove the skin and the pips from each segment. Jeruk manis is the Indonesian version of an orange, but the outer skin is green when the fruit is ripe. They are good to squeeze for juice. Jeruk Garut is a green or orange colored tangerine. Its skin is loose so it’s easy to peel and it is juicy and sweet. Jeruk peres is a smaller juicy tangelo that is ideal for juice. Jeruk nipis or lime is about the size of a golf ball and can be used for drinks or as a flavoring. Lemons are usually imported but a local variety is called jeruk sitrun. The tiniest of the jeruk family is jeruk limo or jeruk sambal, which has a rough green skin, and sharp flavor and is used in cooking.
PISANG (bananas) is the most common and cheap fruit in Indonesia. There is a wide variety of bananas, from the tiny, sweet pisang mas to the large pisang tanduk or plantain used for making banana fritters (pisang goreng). Pisang kepok and pisang raja are also good for making banana fritters, pisang susu is a kind of small starchy banana with light yellow skin and pisang Ambon is the kind of banana that is most commonly eaten in western countries. Just peel and eat! Believe it or not, pisang raja serai is good eaten with a slice of cheese!
One of Bandung's famous landmarks which situated nearby Kantor Pos Pusat (Central Post Office). The design of the top roof is very unique, looks like piece of sate (diced meat skewered in fiery charcoals). That's why addressed as 'Gedung Sate'.
Located 180 kilometer southeast of Jakarta, Bandung is the capital city of West Java province. Bandung has relatively year-around cooler temperature than most other Indonesian cities. The city lies on a river basin and surrounded by volcanic mountains.
It takes only 2 hours by car from Jakarta via Cipularang highway. Or you can also take a three-hours train ride with nice mountain scenery.
Bandung city itself is very exciting place although crowded, Bandung has many old art deco buildings, beautiful parks, and fine landscapes. In the past, Bandung was well known as "Parijs van Java" because of the beauty of this city.
"A City of Factory Outlets & Warehouses"
Bandung is well known as the city of fashion. You can shop in many factory outlets and boutiques around the city.
Almost all streets will have a renovated house turned into a factory outlet where shoppers flock to buy branded clothes at factory prices.