On a recent weekday evening Sukowati Sosrodjojo surveys the gathering dinner crowd. Filtering in from the government and corporate offices downtown, they make their way to his $2 million labor of love: Lenggang Jakarta–an array of new hawker stands three years in the making.
Nestled in a leafy corner of the 75-hectare National Monument Park–known as “Monas”–the green space is a welcome respite from Jakarta’s calamitous traffic and woeful lack of amenities. “When people are suffocated all day by traffic and noise out there, they come in here looking bewildered,” says Sosrodjojo, who is better known as “Suko” and is the president-director of food-and-beverage company Rekso International. “They wonder, ‘What’s the catch?’ ”