Rising in popularity on account of its pristine seas and great surf, the island of Lombok, adjacent to Bali, is now also attracting more visitors for its exquisite South Sea Pearls, farmed in its clear blue-green seas.
These magnificent pearls will be on display and auctioned at the yearly Lombok –Sumbawa Pearls Festival, which this year will be held from 29 June to 1 July 2012 at the Lombok Raya Hotel in the province’s capital city of Mataram. The third Lombok-Sumbawa Pearl Festival is organized by Lombok’s Association of Cultured Pearls, supported by the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy and the West Nusatenggara Office for Tourism and Culture.
Lombok and Sumbawa the two large islands that make up the province of West Nusatenggara, which have a total coastline of 233 kms, entirely clear from pollution by rivers, said Badrul Munir, Deputy Governor of the province. In all there are now already some 24 Pearl Farms around the islands, providing jobs to 2,345 people .
Lombok produces some of the best South Sea Pearls in the world, explained Bambang Setiawan, Chairman of the Association of Cultured Pearls, superior even to those produced by Australia and the Philippines. Top of the line are the South Sea Pearls, known as Pinclada Maxima. Lombok produces 27 shades o these outstanding translucent pearls, with the top colors being bronze, metal and emerald gold of a greenish golden hue.
The waters around Lombok and Sumbawa are the meeting point between the yellow/gold lipped oysters as found in Palawan in the Philippines, and the white lipped oysters more common in the seas between Papua and Australia. And because of this, Lombok’s pearls are more varied in shades.
At present, Lombok exports 600 kg. to 700 kg of pearls per year, but the province aims to reach 1.2 tons production in 2013.
During the Lombok-Sumbawa Pearls Festival, Lombok will host twenty buyers from New York, Tokyo, Geneva, Zurich and Tahiti, who have confirmed attendance. Besides the auction, there will also be a pearls exhibition, a fashion show, cultural performances and a Miss Pearl Beauty Pageant.
In the first 2010 Pearls Festival, the event succeeded to auction off pearls to a value of US$ 47,425. This increased the next year to US$ 96,000 and this year the Festival aims to auction pearls to a total value of USid="mce_marker"20,000.
Most of Lombok’s pearl farms are located along the south west coast of the island, from Sekotong Timur to Bangko-Bangko, at Sekotong Timur, Sekotong Tengah and Lembar,
There are package tours available to visit Lombok’s pearls farms. For information and details, contact: www.goldenpearls.biz/pearls-farm.htm
To know more about the beautiful Lombok pearls click: www.lombok-pearl.com/lombok/en/home
Photo Courtesy: goldenpearls.biz
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