Tegun success today is largely due to its proprietors, Kadek Gunarta and Meghan Pappenheim, a cross-cultural couple that are able to draw on their complementary strengths for the ultimate benefit of Tegun’s customers. Kadek emphasizes management and works with wholesalers and artists through his production company, Dek’s Studio; while Meghan has an instinctive eye for unique eye for items that appeal to visitors.
Both of Tegun’s proprietors are committed not only to the success of their business enterprises, but to the larger community as well. See Kadek and Meghan’s larger vision on their other website, Balispirit.com.
An Ubud native who comes from a long line of traditional craftsman, Kadek is a talented designer and woodworker who understands Western design needs. Kadek began helping buyers export Indonesian handicrafts a decade ago while running his family’s painting gallery. His wife Meghan arrived in Bali in 1995 and they began to work together to build a unique gallery which would support traditional folk art and serve as an information centre on the arts of the Indonesian Archipelago.
His growing concern about Indonesia’s environmental degradation led him to begin creating furnituire from recycled wood. Dek’s studio, his new business, collects old carved house panels, plow handles, ship planks and other hardwood which he incroporates into rustic yet stylish tables, cupboards and other furniture items. He also runs a small production facility near the gallery for customized export orders.
Originally from New York City, Meghan’s questing spirit took her to Bali in 1992 where she met her future husband Kadek. Since then they’ve created a vibrant group of inter-related companies in Ubud beginning with Tegun Galleri, a boutique featuring exotic crafts from all over Indonesia. In 2004 they opened KAFE, which quickly ebecame a popular bistro and meeting point featuring healthy cuisine. Upstairs is Ubud’s first dedicated Yoga Studio, which continues to attract an international following of teachers and students.
The Yoga Shop opened in 2006, providing locally produced yoga clothing and accessories. Following the Bali bomb attack in 2002, Meghan launched a website to bring tourists back to Bali. Balispirit.com has since become the definitive site for Bali’s growing holistic scene, attracting 150,000 direct hits a month. The website is also the vehicle through which Meghan coordinates a network of holistic venues and services around the archipelago. Early 2008 will see the opening of the BaliSpirit Yoga barn, a beautifully crafted ricefield retreat in the centre of Ubud. But Meghan and Kadek’s most satisfying joint project is their daughter Bella, born in 2004.