Following allegations on social media that a villa in Seminyak was exclusively catered to the gay community, the local Public Order Agency (Satpol PP) conducted an inspection in the area and said it found three others with a similar specialty.
A.A. Oka Ambara Dewi, an officer with Satpol PP in Badung regency, told Detik today that the agency will be looking into the villas’ permit before taking any further action.
“We will do it according to our standards of procedure so we will check their permit documents and whether or not they match what they are allotted for, if there is proof that it [caters to the gay community] then we will temporarily seal the property,” Ambar said.
On Friday, a villa, which marketed itself as “Angelo Bali Gay Guesthouse” on Facebook, became viral on social media, prompting authorities to look into allegations that it was exclusive for the gay community.
The news also sparked responses from a number of authorities in Bali, who expressed disapproval based on their belief that homosexuality is against cultural norms on the island. This includes a comment from the head of Badung’s cultural agency, I Made Badra, who said the existence of such a villa is tainting Bali tourism’s reputation.
Satpol PP then summoned the owner of Angelo, who reportedly failed to show up today. In addition, an inspection of the area last week also led the agency to discover three other villas in Seminyak and Kerobokan that allegedly exclusively cater to the gay community.
“There was one villa which now has clarified itself, while Angelo in Seminyak did not show up and we will wait until one week has passed,” Ambar added.
“In Kerobokan, there are two villas, and we have summoned them to come with relevant documents tomorrow.”
Though Bali has long held a reputation of being a generally more tolerant region in Indonesia, initial reaction from local authorities in Bali on this latest viral news may indicate a reason to be concerned. Anti-LGBT sentiment unfortunately run high throughout Indonesia, where there has been increasing persecution against sexual minorities in recent years.