What could be sexier than a plush pool villa?
When money is no object the pool villa can be
By Raini Hamdi, TTG Asia
In Phuket, Trisara has joined the ranks of Banyan Tree Phuket’s spa pool
villa product and the venerable Amanpuri as among the world’s most gorgeous
locations for honeymooners, say I, after a two-night stay at
the resort recently. My life-partner and I rented a car to drive around
Phuket during our stay. We used it for all of 15 minutes, driving from the
international airport to Trisara. After that, we were never seen by the
resort’s front desk again.
What kept us in? It is not what you think – although it was that, too, and
who could blame us! In the face of Trisara’s beautiful surroundings, in the
comfort of our ocean view pool suite which had every modern luxury we could
think of, in the care of the excellent kitchen team that dished up orgasmic
meals, who could bother to step outside?
It took no time at all for us to feel relaxed and romantic in this “third
garden in heaven”, (trisara in Sangskrit).
Trisara also got us going with a bottle of champagne and hand-made
chocolates upon arrival and a floral turndown service complete with a
Honeymooners will appreciate the privacy and seclusion Trisara affords.
There are 42 pool suites and villas built over 16 hectares of landscaped
tropical gardens. The resort sits above a private bay, on gently-sloping
contours, from where it silently guards a stretch of coastline that is
unspoiled by vendors, massage services, or whatever else that can be sold.
Located in north-west Phuket, which is not developed, its surroundings are
green, pristine and fresh.
I was only reminded I was in Phuket by the local architecture of the
resort’s main pavilions and the modern Thai décor and touches in the suite.
Here, it was all quiet and peaceful. The only sounds were leaves being
rustled by the breeze and the lapping of ocean waves. It is surprising that
a location so close to the airport did not startle with the sound of an
aircraft now and then.
My suite, too, was remarkably quiet; thanks to I believe to be the quietest
air-conditioning unit on earth. And there was not a draft anywhere. I never
had to adjust the temperature or the fan speed throughout my stay, a first
To me, this is a simple, but effective, reflection of a perfectionist at
Trisara general manager, Mr Anthony Lark, who is also a partner of the
development, in fact, was general manager of Amanpuri for 12 years since its
early days in 1988. It is not surprising, therefore, to see many Amanresorts
touches in Trisara, such as its great library, well thought-out ideas for
excursions, genteel service, the magnificent main pool with the ubiquitous
white umbrellas, even a copy of The Gallivanter’s Guide with a review of the
Now, his Trisara is a worthy competition to Amanpuri, which must have shaped
Mr Lark’s idea of refinement and which he must have helped shape as the most
desired beach resort in Asia back then.
With no expense spared on building the quality suites and villas, and on
services such as a spa using organic products and a kitchen associated with
renowned Australian chef, Neil Perry, Trisara may find its own junkies.
And who most likely than the couples who find heaven in its gardens, for
whom a honeymoon is forever?
Tel: (66-76) 310-100 email: [email protected]
Room rates start at $556.00 (19,460Bht)
of Thai-Japan trade pact: Thai FM
Thailand will not seek to renegotiate any part of the
finalized free trade agreement with Japan, Thai Foreign Minister Nitya
Pibulsonggram told the powerful Japan Business Association during his recent
visit to Japan.
Mr Nitya assured senior Japanese executives that the Thai government would
stand by its commitments to more liberal trade and investment with Japan -
its top export market and largest foreign investor - although several
members of the National Legislative Assembly, academics and NGOs have called
for a rethink.
Critics of the FTA feared the proposed agreement could pave the way for
dumping of hazardous wastes and for the protection of micro-organism
inventions under Thai patent law.
“We merely ask Japan to put our common understanding reached during the
negotiations into words in the relevant paragraphs of the text, so that it
can never be misinterpreted by anyone otherwise,” Mr Nitya said at the
luncheon speech at Japan Business Association.
He said it would be in the mutual interest of all the parties that
Japan-Thai Economic Partnership Agreement does not encounter protests or
public disagreement before or after signing. He hoped the Keidanren could
help resolve the issues so that the pact could be signed soon.
The Thai foreign minister was in Tokyo to mark the 120th anniversary of
diplomatic relations of Thailand and Japan and to make preparations for an
official visit of Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont, tentatively in the
spring. It is planned to coincide with the delayed signing of the economic
Thai chief negotiator Pisan Manawapat added that the meeting had helped
clear the air and he believed the agreement would be signed soon.
Meanwhile, Mr Nitya said he was asked during a meeting with Sadako Okata,
head of the Japan International Cooperation Agency, about the political
developments in Thailand. He said the Japanese side was satisfied with his
explanation about the steps the interim government was taking to return the
country to democratic rule.
He told Ms Okata that Thailand was drafting a new constitution which would
be put to a national referendum before general elections could be held later
in the year. TNA
OTOP to the World 2007 Fair Next Month
Thousands expected to attend
The highly successful OTOP trade fair is to be held next
month at the Challenger Impact in Bangkok. Organizers of the event have set
the dates for April 17-22 and thousands of buyers, sellers and visitors are
expected to attend.
The One Tambon One Product (OTOP) project was initiated in 2001 to promote
local communities by applying their skills to produce a number of different
products using natural resources and raw materials available in their areas,
thus generating more income for local people. The Thai government then
assists the villagers in giving direction for product development and
placement into local and international markets.
The Department of Export Promotion and the Ministry of Commerce organizes
and sponsors the yearly trade fair in Thailand and in other countries. Their
goal this year is to add value to the OTOP products and create additional
sales distribution channels.
The event is open to buyers on Trade days: April 17 - 20 (10.00 - 18.00
hrs.) and then to the public on: April 21 - 22 (10.00 - 21.00 hrs.)
Additional information can be found on www.thaitradefair.com
Thai Travel News
Almost 14 million tourists arrived
The Tourism Authority of Thailand statistics based on Immigration bureau
figures show 13,821,802 international tourists arrived in 2006 at all border
points, all over the country. The number was slightly over its target of
13.8 million, and a 20.01% growth over 2005.
Malaysians topped the list with 1,591,328 tourists mostly arriving by land,
followed by Japanese at just over 1.3 million, Koreans with just over 1
million, Chinese with about 950,000, then British at 850,000 ahead of
Americans, Singaporeans, Australians, and Germans.
All other nationalities were less than 500,000 arrivals. The nationalities
with the highest growths were Saudi Arabians at 99%, Russians at 83%, East
Europeans at 54% and Egyptians at 51% and the rest were less than 50%.
Suvarnabhumi to become Smile
Airport 2 years
Airports of Thailand (AOT) is set to resolve all problems which
have arisen at Thailand’s flagship Suvarnabhumi Airport and promote it as
the “Smile Airport” for the region in the coming years.
Serirat Prasutanont, Suvarnabhumi Airport director, revealed that AOT plans
to develop the airport and step up efforts to cope with problems the airport
is facing such as insufficient toilets, taxiway and runway cracks, and
inefficient internal services, to get the showcase facility back on track.
He believes Suvarnabhumi will be one of the world’s top 10 airports in the
future when all problems are resolved.
“Unless there are unforeseen risk factors such as political and economic
woes, and terrorism, we believe Suvarnabhumi will become the Smile Airport
and the region’s aviation centre in the future,” he said.
Re-opened Don Muang may initially operate in the red
Bangkok’s former international airport at Don Muang scheduled to
start operating direct domestic flights on March 25 may operate at a loss in
the early stage of its reopening, Deputy Transport Minister Sansern
Initially, only three airlines will operate direct domestic flights from Don
Muang which comprise 17 percent of the total domestic flights scheduled from
the capital. They are now preparing to move back to the airport and to
resume providing services there on March 25 as approved earlier by the
cabinet, Sansern confirmed.
The three airlines are Thai Airways, Nok Air and Orient Thai.
Nok Air’s 58 daily flights back to Don Muang Airport
Nok Air’s airport office will be located at the Domestic
Terminal, Don Muang Airport, with eight check-in counters, counter numbers
27 to 34. In addition, Nok Air has three ticketing counters, two of which
are located by the Departure Gate on the second floor, next to the entrance,
and another one at an Arrival Gate on the ground floor.
Although Nok Air will begin its full operation at Don Muang on March 25,
there will be flights coming in to Don Muang during the evening of March 24,
2007; Nok Air’s Flight DD8327 from Chiang Mai to Bangkok on March 24th
departing at 9.50 p.m. will arrive at Don Muang at 11.00 p.m.
On March 25th all of Nok Air’s flights will operate to and from Don Muang.
For additional information call 1318.
Chiang Mai Airline Guide
Domestic airlines including Thai Airways, Bangkok
Airways, Air Asia, Nok Air and Orient Thai Airlines operate several flights
daily between Chiang Mai and Bangkok.
Thai Airways also operates domestic flights from Chiang Mai to Mae Hong Son,
and Phuket. International flights to and from Chittakong (Bangladesh),
Khunming (China), and Tokyo Narita (seasonal) are also provided. Call 02 628
2000 (Bangkok), 053 211 044-7 (Chiang Mai), or visit
http://www.thaiairways.com for more information.
Bangkok Airways also offers several daily flights on the Bangkok - Chiang
Mai route, some with a stopover at Sukhothai and a Chiang Mai-Samui
non-stop. International routes to and from Jinghong and Xian are also
available. Call 02 265 5555, 265 5678 (Bangkok Office) or 053 27 6176
(Chiang Mai Office) or visit http://www.bangko kair.com for more
Air Asia flights and schedules visit http://www.airasia.com
Nok Air flights and schedules call 1318 or visit http://www.nokair.co.th
Orient Thai Airlines schedules call 02 267 2999 or visit
Foreign Airlines operating flights from Chiang Mai to several destinations
Air Mandalay operates flights between Chiang Mai and Yangon on Sundays and
Thursdays. Contact 053 818 049 (Chiang Mai office), visit
http://www.myanmars.net/airman dalay or write to [email protected]
for more information.
Air Asia operates a daily flight from Chiang Mai to Kuala Lumpur. Visit
http://www.air asia.com for more information.
Mandarin Airlines operates seasonal flights between Chiang Mai and Taipei
three times a week on Tuesday, Friday and Saturday. For more information
call, 053 201 268-9 (Chiang Mai office) or visit http://www. mandarinair.com
Lao Airlines operates flights to Luang Prabang and Vientiane route three
times a week on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday. Call 053 223 401 (Chiang Mai
office), visit http://www.laoairlines.com or write to [email protected]
for more information.
Silk Air operates seasonal flights between Chiang Mai Singapore three times
a week on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday. Call 053 276 459 053 276 495 (Chiang
Mai office) or visit http://www.silkair.com for reservations.
Tiger Air operates flights between Chiang Mai and Singapore four times a
week on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. More information
Promoting Thailand in Germany
Tourism Authority of Thailand Governor Pornsiri Manoharn
revealed that the TAT spent 15 million baht to promote Thai tourism to
foreigners at the International Tourism Borse (ITB) in Germany which was
held from March 7th to 11th in Berlin, Germany. More than 126 private
tourism businesses, including travel agencies, hotels, and spas,
participated in this tourism promotion campaign with an aim to reinvigorate
the Thai tourism industry.
At the event the TAT highlighted the new and small resorts in Thailand to
the international community, as well as 46 hotels from the South and 12 from
the East. This year the TAT also focused on promoting new travel
destinations and resorts.
Mrs. Pornsiri expressed confidence that this campaign was worthwhile as the
private companies are launching various promotions and alliances to boost
their businesses. Representatives from 150 countries were registered at the
41st ITB in Berlin. The event attracted 10,856 sellers and approximately
160,000 guests attended the travel trade fair.