Sat, 02 Jul 2022

JAKARTA, Jan. 13 (Xinhua) -- The Indonesian government is preparing nearly 700 pinisi ships and a number of cruises as additional accommodations for tourists during the forthcoming world-class MotoGP motorcycle event in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara province.

Pinisi is an iconic Indonesian traditional boat made of wood, which originates from South Sulawesi province.

"Each pinisi ship has five bedrooms. So we'll have 3,500 additional rooms. There will also be two cruises coming. Pelni will provide four ships, each of which has 1,000 rooms," field commander of the MotoGP Mandalika preparation team Hadi Tjahjanto said on Thursday, referring to Indonesia's state-owned ship operator PT Pelayaran Nasional Indonesia (Pelni).

Scheduled to take place at the Mandalika International Street Circuit from March 18 to 22 this year, the highly-anticipated international sporting event MotoGP is expected to welcome more than 64,000 spectators, but the total hotel rooms and home stays in the Lombok island are only available for around 16,000 people.

Tjahjanto said the government had talked with residents who own home stays for tourism to help prepare rooms. "But first, we'll ensure that their home stays have met international standards," Tjahjanto said.

Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy Sandiaga Uno said on Monday that the ministry would work in collaboration with private businesses such as capsule hotels to provide temporary lodging facilities including camping grounds and camper vans.

On Thursday, Indonesian President Joko Widodo visited the Mandalika circuit to see the progress in infrastructure construction, assuring that all would have been ready by February.

"Mandalika is not only about the MotoGP race. I want the event to bring positive economic effects to the people in Lombok," he said.

The Mandalika circuit opened in November 2021, and held its inaugural race, World Superbike Championship, in the same month.

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