Kartini Day Commemoration: Beyond the Ritual

Based on a Presidential Decision issued by President Sukarno in May 1964, 21st April is celebrated as Kartini Day in Indonesia, to honour the national heroine recognised as a pioneer for female emancipation in the country.  School girls and sometimes female office workers would dress up in kebayas, to go to school or work, similar

Dewi Fortuna Anwar

East Meets Wines: Pairing with Asian Cuisine

Leading up to this year’s Chinese New Year celebrations I received many questions about what wines pair best with Chinese food. As you can imagine, many dishes from this rich and flavourful cuisine won’t find a good pairing, but a handful result in some surprisingly delicious combinations! Firstly, let’s get to back to the fundamentals


The Ambassadors Round Table: Edition 1

The Ambassador’s Round Table highlights the important diplomatic relationships Indonesia has with the global community, made possible through well-established, Jakarta-based embassies. Hosted by NOW! Jakarta Founder, Alistair Speirs, this forum gives a platform for prominent Ambassadors to Indonesia to share more about their respective country’s programmes and on-going objectives here in Indonesia. Edition 1 welcomes

Indonesian Democracy in Process: A Historic & Contemporary Review

On 14 February 2024, Indonesia held its simultaneous general and presidential elections. This has attracted global attention as it is the largest democratic process of its kind in the world; whatever opinion one might have on its outcomes, the sheer scale of its process is without a doubt an impressive feat. The geographic and demographic

The Evolution of Chinese-Indonesian Rights and the Sign of a New Indonesia 

In the Indonesia we see today, one might take for granted the freedoms and liberties we currently have. However, older generation Chinese-Indonesians are one group that certainly do not take this lightly, many of whom continue to live with the mental and emotional scars of the country’s darker, discriminatory past. The open cultural celebrations of

From Fantasy to Fact: The Making of the New Capital IKN

The debate over the transfer of the national capital from Java to Kalimantan ended with the passage of Law Number 3 of 2022 concerning the National Capital (IKN Law). This law was signed and officially published on 15 February 2022, which established the Nusantara Capital Authority, a ministry-level organization that oversees the Special Capital Region

Skal Spectacular at Singosari

Skål is a professional organisation of tourism leaders around the world, promoting global tourism and friendship. It is the only international group uniting all branches of the travel and tourism industry. Skal members, the industry’s managers and executives, meet at local, national, regional and international levels to discuss and pursue topics of common interest. History

The Evolution of Jakarta’s Transport

Oh! We are all such suckers for nostalgia, but as they say ‘Nostalgia ain’t what it used to be!” Sometimes looking back, we tend to romanticise our memories. I will try not to do that, especially about transport, but you never know! Let’s start with the demise of the simplest, non-polluting, form of transport you

Jakarta Today

Jakarta Today: A Tentative Love Letter

Those who have spent most of their lives in Jakarta may feel the changes around them to be gradual, a slow and perhaps even unnoticeable evolution of their environment. One may have a myopic perspective to these changes, focusing on the immediate inconveniences such developments may cause to day-to-day life, rather than noticing the macro-transformation

Jakarta's past

Jakarta Then & Now: A Personal Recollection of 44 Years in the Capital

Arriving in Jakarta in December 1978 to start work in the rather undeveloped Indonesia insurance industry was an absolute culture shock, especially after the refined and gentrified world of Lloyds of London and a flat in New Kings Road. The plane arrived in Kemayoran Airport, which is now a centre for business and conventions (but


Reflecting on 15 Years of NOW! Jakarta

I perhaps should not tell you this, but I didn’t really want to start NOW! Jakarta! I was perfectly happy publishing a marvellous magazine called Jakarta Java Kini, or JJK, but my partner at the time had other ideas and took over the company, leaving me with a bit of a dilemma since I had enjoyed

Now Bali