Thursday, June 20, 2019

3 Places for Those Love Reading Books

Spectr News Theme Isny Dewi R.
11, January 2019

Although famous for its chaos, Jakarta also has several quiet places complete with a large collection of books. Below are places worth visiting for book lovers.

1. OMAH Library
If you are looking for books on architecture, On Meeting Architecture Hub (OMAH) Library could be your go-to spot. Established in 2014 by architect Realrich Sjarief, OMAH Library aims to help budding architects, or those interested in the subject, access information about architecture in Indonesia.

There are about 1,500 titles that can be found here, focusing mainly on 10 architecture-related categories, such as architectural monographs, case studies and theories. OMAH Library also collects other genres, including philosophy and fiction. Most of the works are in English, but Indonesian books are also available. They can only be read inside the library and visitors do not need to enroll or pay to enter and read.

OMAH has seven main programs, namely Learning from the Master, Bittersweet in Design Experience, Book Discussion, Sounds of OMAH, Public Lecture, Architecture Pilgrimage Trip, and Brownbag. Bittersweet in Design Experience, for example, is a discussion with local and regional architects about the world of architecture in Indonesia, while Architecture Pilgrimage Trip is an open trip in which participants visit an architectural work and discuss it.

If you want to visit the library, it is best to do it on the weekends or call beforehand as the place is nestled within the private residence of Realrich Sjarief.

OMAH Library
Address: Jl. Taman Amarilis 2 F2/15, Taman Villa Meruya, Meruya Utara, West Jakarta
Phone Number: 021-58908647
Instagram: @omahlibrary

2. The National Library of Indonesia
The National Library of Indonesia is a must-visit center of knowledge in Jakarta. Books from different genres, films, ancient texts or old-time newspapers can be found here.

Photo Source:

Different floors have sections dedicated to certain subjects. Children and the elderly, for example, can visit the seventh floor as it has two rooms dedicated for them. The children's library has collections of books and colorful decorations, while the senior section has books about health. The senior section is also where books in Braille can be found.

In general, people usually flock to the 21st and 22nd floors as books from a wide array of genres – from literature to non-fiction – can be found there. Sofas, tables and power plugs are provided. However, Perpusnas has also an app, iPusnas, for those wanting to borrow e-books and read them offline. There is also an ePustaka category where you can find books from President Joko Widodo and other influential figures in Indonesia. One must first sign up to gain access to ePustaka.

The National Library of Indonesia
Address: Jl. Medan Merdeka Selatan No.11, Central Jakarta
Opening hours: Mon – Thu 08.30 - 18.00, Fri 09.00 - 18.00 WIB, Sat & Sun 09.00 - 16.00 WIB

3. Rimba Baca
Adopting a family library as its concept, Rimba Baca is stocked with children's books on its first floor and adult books on its second. Those entering the library are required to take off their shoes.

Photo Source: @rimbabaca 

The first floor is home to children's books for all ages up to 12 years old. The books range from activity books and encyclopedias to fiction works. Most of the books are in English, but there are also works in Indonesian and other languages, including Japanese, Korean, Indian and Chinese. Families mostly come on the weekends. The library also has an art room where children can learn to draw and express themselves creatively.

The second floor is for adult books of different genres, including fiction, religion, design, parenting, comics and biographies. The books here are also mostly in English, although there is a special section for Indonesian books and comics. People can read on the floor, in chairs or on sofas.

You can enter the library in Jakarta by paying either a membership or non-membership fee. For the non-membership fee, it costs Rp 30,000 per children and Rp 50,000 for adults who accompany them. For adults who come without children and opt to head straight to the second floor, it costs only Rp 30,000. Visitors are not allowed to borrow books.

With the membership program, which one can join by filling in a form and paying an administrative fee of Rp 375,000 for a family, all members of the family can visit the library at any time and borrow books for a maximum period of two weeks. Rimba Baca also offers many activities, such as seminars for parents and workshops.

Rimba Baca
Address: Jl. RSPP No. 21B, Cilandak, South Jakarta
Phone Number: 62 21 7664517 / WA: 0878 0001 8555
Instagram: @rimbabaca

Isny Dewi R.
Isny Dewi R.