Balibó Fort Hotel, Balibo Fort Event Centre and Cultural and Heritage Museum
The Balibó House Trust restored one of Timor-Leste’s most significant heritage sites, the 18th century Portuguese fort at Balibó. On the same site, the Trust managed the construction of high-quality visitor accommodation.
The restoration of the Balibó Fort has created income, employment and training opportunities for the people of Balibó and has helped drive economic activity into the western part of Timor-Leste. Funds generated by the project supports the charitable work of the Trust at the Balibó Community Learning Centre, the Balibo Dental Clinic and Balibó Five Kindergarten.
The first stage of restoration works was completed in late 2013. As part of this heritage restoration, the fort walls, ramparts and cannon were preserved, new fort gates made from solid timber were installed and the former colonial administrator’s residence inside the fort was fully renovated in heritage Portuguese style.
On 20 March 2015, Hon Xanana Gusmao and the former Premier of Victoria Steve Bracks officially opened:
- A cultural centre and museum celebrating the history, language and culture of Timor-Leste
- Modern, high quality, heritage influenced visitor accommodation
- A café and restaurant in the heritage restored Fort House with panoramic views from the mountains to the sea.
The Balibó House Trust has been pleased to welcome the support of the Government of Timor-Leste, which has included the fort restoration project in its National Strategic Development Plan 2011-2030.
The Trust is grateful for the many people and organisations who have made the fort restoration possible. In particular we thank our major project partners the Harold Mitchell Foundation and Crown Limited, and the Bayu-Undan Joint Venture – our Founding Partner, Education & Heritage, for their generous support.
To assist delivery of this project, the Trust partnered with the Market Development Facility (MDF), a pro-poor market system development program that is fully funded by Australian Aid, with the Managing Contractor being Cardno Emerging Markets. The overall goal of MDF is to ‘sustainably increase employment and incomes for poor women and men in rural and urban areas’.
Balibo Fort Event Centre
The Trust has constructed an Events Centre located within the historic Balibo Fort. This is a purpose-built facility seating up to 60 people with audio-visual technology, air-conditioning and a range of catering options. Lush gardens offer ocean views for up to 250 people, while guest rooms onsite at the Fort Hotel, in Balibo village, and in nearby Maliana will accommodate guests in comfort. The event centre is now open for bookings.
To book a room at the Hotel or book the event centre or for further information go to www.baliboforthotel.com