Vol. V No. 38 - Saturday September 16, - September 22, 2006
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by Saichon Paewsoongnern


HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

YMCA Chiang Mai celebrates 36th anniversary

Charity Rooftop committee raises funds at dinner

Freccia Thai leather products being promoted internationally

Doing little things brilliantly

Saen Kham Terrace Gala Concert for Charity

YMCA Chiang Mai celebrates 36th anniversary

YMCA Chiang Mai
The Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA), Chiang Mai, celebrated 36 years of work within the Chiang Mai community this week. Since its beginning in 1970 the organisation has established six centres in the northern region. Four of the northern centres are located in Chiang Mai at Santitham, Sao Hin, San Kamphaeng and San Patong. Lamphun and Chiang Rai have their own YMCA centres.

YMCA teaches life skills that help women in the community provide for their families.

A member of the National Council on Social Welfare in Thailand, YMCA is an organisation based on Christian principles, with an emphasis on engaging in community development projects. In its early years the YMCA started many non-formal education programs, which at the time were rarely seen in the north. Their projects included children’s guitar lessons, sewing lessons for maids, and English lessons for samlor drivers, police, local administration officials and a number of other disparate professions. Their overall aim was to teach adults new skills that would benefit them in their working lives.
The YMCA has been active in projects that have promoted conservation, expanded women’s rights and provided assistance for street children. They have also helped handicraft manufacturers access new markets and promoted activities to increase cooperation between religious groups.
The YMCA operates by the tenet “love your neighbour as you love yourself.” It aims to promote the personal development of the individual’s health and mind without discriminating between sex, age or religion. Teenagers are encouraged to take up leadership roles within their communities to enable them to strengthen their communities in adult life.
The YMCA in Chiang Mai was originally a 1 unit, 3 storey shop house in the centre of Chiang Mai. They moved to a 2 storey wooden house on Charoen Prated Road before moving to their present two building location at Santitham.

YMCA has a beautiful office at Santitham.

Charity Rooftop committee raises funds at dinner

Kids from School For Life enjoying Khun Khantoke.

On Sunday September 3 over 100 children from the School for Life, along with staff, were treated to a special dinner at the Khum Khantoke restaurant behind Carrefour. The event was generously paid for by Wachara Tantranont; chairman of the Charity Rooftop committee. It was of special interest to the children because many of them are award winning musicians and dancers.
The following night the delightful Angele hosted a delicious dinner at D2 Moxie restaurant in the night bazaar for 50 people. She generously donated vouchers (including a one night stay at the D2) for the raffle and auction along with other prizes from Plub Bla restaurant, Hillside fitness centre and DNK International. As a special surprise Andrew from the Four Seasons Resort Spa donated a one night stay on September 17 (International Chefs’ Gourmet night).

D2’s Angele (right) with Esther, the lucky winner of the Four Seasons voucher.

Howard Graves along with Dieter and Susie baked cakes for an American auction.
The whole evening was very successful, raising over 27,000 baht, which will be added to the total of the Charity Rooftop party to be held on January 13, 2007 at Hillside Condo 4. So far a total of 46,000 baht has been raised in aid of School For Life.
The next dinner will be at Buonissimo’s Italian restaurant on Wednesday October 4.
Other functions include: an art exhibition called ‘The Wisdom of Lotus’ by a 15-year-old artist from the School for Life on September 9 at Joy’s House; and a quiz night at Soho Bar on Wednesday September 20, starting at 8 p.m.
For further information please contact charityroof [email protected]

These gentlemen are enjoying the dinner at D2.

Freccia Thai leather products being promoted internationally

Saksit Meesubkwang
A Thai leather products factory in Chiang Kham district, Phayao, has recently taken steps to expand its export market. The Chiang Kham Leather Co. Ltd., produces made-to-order leather goods, as well as producing goods for well known brands such as Benetton, Jim Thompson and Samsonite. The company exports a minimum of one million bags per year.
Managing Director Mom Luang Phongchak Chakraphan revealed that the company was set up in 2002, by himself and a consortium of Japanese businessmen. He said that the company would earn around 200 million baht in 2006 and expected this amount to rise in the future due to increasing export sales.
Mom added that the company recently received a contract from Samsonite to produce 100,000 leather purses and that the company would be accelerating production in order to meet the increasing demand from foreign customers. About 70% of the leather produced by Chiang Kham Leather Co. Ltd. is exported to Japan, while the remaining 30% is sent to USA and Europe.
Ruangsawat Tontimon, business development manager of the company, stated that the products were made from real leather imported mainly from Italy, with the remainder imported from Bangladesh and India. Italian leather is known for its high quality and durability. In the past the company employed only 100 workers, but this number has recently been increased to 1,000 in order to meet the increase in orders. The majority of workers are locals from Chiang Kham district.
Ruangsawat added that the company has launched its own brand, Freccia, which has sent sample purses to Italy and Japan, where they were met with an enthusiastic response. The Freccia brand will concentrate on exports as the low manufacturing costs enable their products to be very competitive internationally. Freccia is now sold at Don Muang International Airport and will soon be distributed at Suvarnabhumi International Airport.

Doing little things brilliantly

Murray Dickson
Yalumba Wines from South Australia’s famed Barossa Valley proudly and justifiably boasts that it has “been doing little things brilliantly” for the past 150 years. The company recently combined with two Northern Thai companies that, whilst they haven’t been around as long as Yalumba, have a similar reputation when it comes to innovation and quality.

(L-R) Danaya Sarikbutr, Angele Liu and Mike Drews from D2 Hotel, Alan Hoey from Yalumba Wines and Joon Patinya Srisuk from Horeca.
Leading food and beverage wholesaler, Horeca, along with D2 Hotel, Chiang Mai, hosted other hoteliers and restaurateurs to what was quaintly termed a Winemaker Dinner. This turned out to be the understatement of the year, with some seven courses of fabulous food, each course accompanied by the appropriate Yalumba wines and served in the opulent surroundings of a private dining room at the D2 Hotel. (I’ll provide you with a full copy of the menu at the end of this article as I’m sure you’ll want to replicate it next time you invite some of your very best friends around for a lavish Chiang Mai Dinner Party.)
This soiree was to introduce Yalumba’s chief winemaker, Alan Hoey, with some of his best wines, to the local market. Alan has been with the company, which is the largest, family owned winery in Australia, for 26 years. During that time he and Yalumba have racked up a veritable book of winemaking and viticulture awards, which Alan attributes to following the philosophy of being consistent and persistent. He says the family company, headed by Robert Hill Smith, owns some of the oldest vines in the world, dating back 110 years and prides itself on maintaining strict quality control of its product from vine to bottle. This even extends to Yalumba manufacturing its own wine barrels from imported oak.

(L-R) Chiangmai Mail’s Murray Dickson discusses wine making with Yalumba Wines chief winemaker, Alan Hoey.

Having recently invested more than AUD$30 million (approximately 840 million baht) in the winery which produces Yalumba’s “Oxford Landing” range of wines, Alan shrugs off any suggestion that Yalumba could be in danger of falling into the hands of one of the larger Australian wineries, or even an overseas based consortium, saying that Yalumba Wines is simply not for sale.
The fruits of its labour, however, are for sale and are now readily available throughout Northern Thailand, thanks to the efforts and distributing expertise of the winery’s reliable partner, Horeca of Chiang Mai.
The Yalumba Winemake Dinner menu

Yellow fin tuna with caviar and cucumber lemon salsa accompanied by Y series Pinot Grigio 2005.
Lobster consomm้ perfumed with XO cognac, vegetable paysanne and lobster ravioli. Accompanied by Y series Unwooded Chardonnay 2005.
Chanterelle filed summery quails on black angel hair and tomato tarragon dressing. Accompanied by Barossa Shiraz Viognier 2003.
Wild forest berry & vodka sorbet.
Rosemary crumbed lamb rack on saffron-walnut risotto & cherry tomato compote drizzled with foie gras nage, accompanied by Barossa Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz “the Signature” 2001.
Baked venison in filo wrap with morel scotch sauce on potato galette and cinnamon flavoured apple confit, accompanied by Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon “The Menzies” 1999.
Bitter chocolate mousse on orange jelly and apricot sauce.

(L-R) Wim N.M. Fagel, GM Amari Rincome Hotel; Gijsbert Roodenburg, GM Amora Tapae Hotel; Angele Liu executive assistant manager D2 Hotel; and Rudy van den Berg, managing director Horeca.

Saen Kham Terrace Gala Concert for Charity

Nopniwat Krailerg and Preeyanoot Jittawong
Entertainment for gourmets and music-lovers alike is to be anticipated from a series of special charity dinners and concerts planned for November, with the proceeds going to several worthy causes in and around Chiang Mai.

Opera singer Book Keetawattana will be one of the featured performers at the first Saen Kham Terrace charity dinner and concert on November 11.

The announcement was made by Wanphen Sakdatorn at the opening ceremony of Baan Saen Doi’s 2nd Project in Baan Nai Fan Village 2 on Irrigation Canal Road. Accompanied by her executive staff, Wanphen stated that the proceeds of these charity dinners would be donated to 5 foundations in Chiang Mai; namely, the Northern Disabled People’s Foundation, Anusarn Sunthorn School for the Deaf, Srisungwarn Chiang Mai School, Suandok Hospital Foundation, and Chiang Mai Orphanage Foundation, with each charity expected to receive 100,000 baht.
Wanphen said that the charity concert held at the opening ceremony of Baan Saen Doi’s 1st Project in March 2004 raised 500,000 baht for charity, which was split between 10 charity organizations in Chiang Mai. She also said that she wants everyone, both Thais and foreigners, to come and enjoy the charity dinners and have the opportunity to taste delicious food and listen to the music. The menu for each evening will feature both Northern local food and European food, and the charity concerts and dinners will be held on several nights with different styles.

Saen Kham Terrace executives Wanphen Sakdatorn and Somjet Srithongkham announce the special charity dinners and concerts.

The first gala dinner will be held on November 11 at Saen Kham Terrace, with tasty food prepared by the house chef, Thai music and classical guitar by Prakhong Pramoonsilp, piano by Tarnthip Kaewkamnerd and vocals by Book Keetawattana. Also, there will be national artists such as Sawalee Pakaphan, Thienchai Sukthiang and Wisuta Sanasen as special guests. The cost of the ticket for the evening will be 1,500 baht.
On November 18, the menu for the gala dinner will offer authentic food in the style of the residence of a Northern prince, cooked and prepared by Chao Jiraphan Na Chiang Mai. Country-folk singers and special guest vocals by Soonthree Vechanont, Phanipha “Kai” Jirasak and Sarisa Hongthong will be featured. The ticket price for this performance and dinner will also be 1,500 baht.
On the evening of November 25, there will be a gala dinner in French fusion style with lots of tasty menus, and music by MC Dang and ML Sirichalerm Sawasdiwat, with songs from famous Broadway musical shows; piano by Bernard Summer, vocals by Thienchai Sukthiang, Book Keetawattana and Narint Prasopchokpakdi, the Thai champion of French-language music in 1994. The ticket price for this particular performance will be 2,500 baht.
Finally, on December 2, there will be a German buffet style dinner; with music from the Trio Band by Annop Rithimanee, guest vocals by Rinnapha Sereesak, Phanipha “Kai” Jirasak and Sarisa Hongthong. The ticket for the final charity dinner will be 2,000 baht.
The concerts will start every night at 7.p.m. at Saen Kham Terrace Restaurant, Baan Nai Fan 2nd project. There are only 70 tables, so to prevent disappointment, early reservation is strongly advised. For more information and to make a table reservation, call 053-838990 or contact Somjed Srithongkham 08-9850-3763 and Passport to Suvarnabhumi Magazine, Tel. 053-808770-1.

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