Memories of Thailand

1
Soneva marks 25th Annivrsary
2
Anantara Hotels, Resorts and Spas offers guests travel escapism while staying at home
3
Anantara Siam Introduces private sacred inking sessions by Bangkok’s bamboo tattoo master
4
Thailand’s Elephant Boat Race and River Festival glides to a spectacular finish
5
V Villas Hua Hin’s romanic beachfront St. Valentine’s Day dinner
6
Anantara’s Jungle Bubble: Seeing elephants up close
7
COSI Samui Chaweng Beach helps bring creative arts to Koh Samui
8
Ratilanna Chiang Mai’s Christmas and New Year’s celebations
9
Get VIP access to Thailand’s Elephant Boat Race and River Festival
10
Centara launches  650 Million THB Room Upgrade at Flagship Bangkok Hotel

Soneva marks 25th Annivrsary

OCTOBER 2020 MARKS THE START of a milestone year for Soneva, as we celebrate the 25th anniversary since our launch back in 1995. To mark this momentous occasion, we want to say a heartfelt thank you to every single one of our guests for being part of the Soneva family.

Soneva was the first barefoot luxury resort of its kind, a family of resorts that has always been ahead of the curve. Today, Soneva is still an innovator and a leader in the world of hospitality when it comes to both guest experiences and sustainability.

Join us in celebrating 25 years of Soneva. During 2020-21, we’ll be launching unique experiences, commemorative videos and special events as we look forward to the next 25 years.

We are really thankful for your ongoing support and could not have achieved this success without you. To view our our specially curated collection of old images and videos, including a new film series by the renowned French film director Bruno Aveillan,  click here

To all our friends who share our vision, to all the many hands that built it.

Thank You. Sonu and Eva

Anantara Hotels, Resorts and Spas offers guests travel escapism while staying at home

ANANTARA CELEBRATES EVERY DAY with an invitation to discover a new passion, whether it’s indigenous Spice Spoons cooking classes, Anantara Spa rituals that channel local wellness traditions, or unique travel experiences that are true memory makers.

With the current situation worldwide, Anantara understands that it is a difficult time for most people to travel and so our global network of Anantara Experts will be bringing our signature indigenous experiences to you at home.

The philosophy of Anantara Hotels Resorts and Spas, the luxury hospitality brand for modern travellers, is ‘Life Is a Journey.’

Until the time comes to start our travel journeys safely once again, the Anantara Nomads Blog https://www.anantara.com/en/blog will be continually connecting everyone with a steady stream of personable and authentic content and stories designed to inspire and provide a positive form of travel escapism during this period of global social distancing.

Using the hashtag, #AnantaraEscapism, our properties from all corners of the world will be sharing bitesize video content and healthy living tips to inspire and stimulate guests from our homes to theirs across our social media channels below.

Whether it’s nourishing and immunity boosting recipes from our culinary chefs from the Maldives to Oman, wellness boosting home spa remedies, or home workouts and fitness tips from our exceptional team members, such as martial arts lessons from Vietnam’s Anantara Quy Nhon’s resident Việt Võ Đạo martial arts master, Mr Phuc.

The Nomad’s blog will be regularly refreshed with fun and nourishing recipes, experiences and bucket-list ideas for future travels.

Now more than ever it’s time to look after ourselves and the world we live in and sustainable tourism has long been a key pillar of the Anantara ethos.

The month of April will be devoted to Earth Month, with a series of nature stories highlighting some of the projects and the incredible team members and Anantara Experts that protect and support the communities which our properties are thankful to call home.

Anantara guests play an integral role in supporting these, whether it’s planting rescued coral with the Holistic Approach to Reef Protection at Anantara Dhigu Maldives Resort or helping to clean beaches and release baby turtles with the Mai Khao Turtle Foundation at Anantara Layan Resort and Anantara Mai Khao Resort in Phuket, Thailand. For the next few weeks we will be sharing our stunning nature inspired experiences digitally.

To further calm nerves and put smiles on the faces of everyone at home, Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp and Resort will be sharing twice daily live streams from the rescued elephants that reside in the onsite elephant camp supported by Anantara’s charitable non-profit organization,

The Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation (GTAEF). Guests will be able to virtually frolic in the Ruak River as the elephants go about their daily bathing and walk alongside the team of veterinarians fielding questions via Instagram and Facebook.

At Anantara we pride ourselves in bringing story collecting travellers closer to the colourful local traditions, intriguing heritage and breathtaking topography of some of the world’s most exotic destinations and while we are waiting patiently to welcome you back to our hotels very soon we’ll be taking mobile technology to the next level delivering consistent experiences across all devices and enabling potential customers to enjoy a streamlined browsing experience across multiple languages on any screen size using responsive technology.

For more information on Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas, visit www.anantara.com .

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/anantara/

Twitter and Instagram: @anantara_hotels

 

 

Anantara Siam Introduces private sacred inking sessions by Bangkok’s bamboo tattoo master

 ANANTARA HOTELS, RESORTS AND SPAS’ flagship hotel, Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel, is introducing private sacred tattoo sessions by one of the City of Angels’ most famous Sak Yant masters, Ajarn Neng Onnut.

Anantara Siam is the only hotel in Thailand that offers this exclusive private service by the revered master.

Sak Yant tattoos, also referred to as bamboo tattoos, are expertly engraved into the skin entirely by hand using a traditional Khem Sak – a handcrafted metal rod designed to replicate the shape of a bamboo stick that is often passed down to an Ajarn, meaning master in Thai, by their own master.

These tattoos are popular among Thais who mostly visit a temple to get inked by a Buddhist monk and are traditional forms of tattooing magical ancient geometric and deity symbols with Buddhist prayers onto the body.

The tattoos are sacred blessings that are believed to impart magical powers for luck; protection; charisma; fortune; and other powers onto the wearer to help in their own personal journey.

In recent years the practice has become increasingly popular with foreign tourists, thanks in part to Ajarn Neng who inked Sak Yant tattoos on Hollywood actors including Ryan Phillippe; Jesse Bradford; and Brooke Shields; and famed Hong Kong actor, Alex Fong.

The most famous Yant is the Haah Taew or five-line Yant; and Ajarn Neng also inks simple one-line Yants and Gao Yord, a nine-spine Yant; or much bigger Yants designs like Twin Tigers.

A master, teacher and learned scholar in the sacred art of Sak Yant, Ajarn Neng Onnut has more than ten years of perfecting his expert craft on over 10,000 people under his Khem Sak, and his fascination with this sacred art has been described as something of an obsession.

“Being an Ajarn in Sak Yant was not something I planned, but when I realized it was what I must do, it was as if everything before had been leading me to that moment,” said Ajarn Neng.

Sak Yant is one of the world’s most ancient and sacred traditions and becoming learned in it includes mastering the intricate art work of the tattoos, which consists of almost 1,000 different graphic images.

Ajarn Neng’s passion to become a master also saw him learning how to read and write the entire ancient Khmer and Pali scripts, memorizing all the unique prayers and secret spells, chants and mantras that relate to the sacred tattoos.

Commenting on the introduction of private Sak Yant tattoo sessions by Ajarn Neng Onnut at the luxury urban retreat in the heart of one of the world’s most enigmatic capital cities, Daniel Simon, Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel’s general manager, said that Anantara takes pride in connecting travellers to the indigenous with passionate expertise.

“We are honoured and thrilled to welcome Ajarn Neng to one of Bangkok’s most exclusive addresses and to offer our guests an authentic, once-in-a lifetime experience that is a quintessential Thai tradition.

“Perfectly blending an elegant location with an indigenous experience, every detail has been carefully considered to ensure the traditional sacred tattoos are executed with the utmost care given to hygiene and comfort,” Simon concluded.

The private Sak Yant tattoo sessions by Ajarn Neng Onnut are performed in the privacy of a guest’s suite, or in a private treatment room.  A consultation by the Ajarn takes place the day before when the master meets and learns about the guest’s life and goals in life and decides on a fitting Yant.

Before and after inking the Yant, the Ajarn performs a ceremony where the body and art are blessed, giving the wearer a permanent and deeply significant reminder of the unique experience.

Prices for a private Sak Yant tattoo session by Ajarn Neng Onnut at Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel start from $800 USD for a small symbol called Na and $1,000 U.S. for a one-line Yant, to $3,000 USD per hour for a Twin Tiger design.

A prior reservation is essential and can be made by calling Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel on telephone +66 2 126 8866 or email siam@anantara.com.

 

 

Thailand’s Elephant Boat Race and River Festival glides to a spectacular finish

AFTER THREE DAYS OF FUN FESTIVITIES on the banks of Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River, the second annual Elephant Boat Race and River Festival wrapped up, with the Raja Navy (Royal Thai Navy) – Citi, winning the royal trophy granted by His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn Phra Vajiraklaochaoyuhua.

The final four teams – Raja Navy (Royal Thai Navy) – Citi, Thailand National Sports University Lampang Campus – Casillero Del Diablo; Samut Prakarn – PWC Thailand; Pradu Thong Goddess – Keith&Kym; went head to head in the thrilling final but it was last year’s winners the Raja Navy that blitzed the race and claimed the final victory for the second year running.

On land, visitors were treated to champagne tents, musical concerts by top bands including Paradox and Oat Pramote, live graffiti artwork by world renowned street artist Alex Face and spectacular fireworks displays.

The festival, in the centre of the city, also celebrated Thai culture with interactive workshops from the Thailand Kite Association and a selection of Thailand’s top restaurants and Bangkok’s favourite chefs.

International celebrities seen at this year’s event included author and creator of Sex and the City, Candace Bushnell and New York Fashion Designer Nicole Miller cheered on their favourite teams amongst the crowds. Thai celebrity and environmental activist Pearypie Amata Chittasenee and Jay Spencer was also in attendance along with a host of Bangkok’s glitterati.

The exciting event has not only been about fun and games – a generous sum was raised through ticket sales, for many elephant charity projects during the event.

Funds from the event will be donated to various projects including funding vets, English teachers and conservation workshops to improve the year-round lives of elephants and mahout families in Surin Province where ex-street elephants face on-going hardship.

Other significant benefits from the money raised by the festival include: developing programs with communities along the edge of Khao Yai National Park to help them survive together with the wild elephants, who regularly visit their villages & crop fields, funding projects to study the behaviour patterns of crop-raiding elephants as well as continuing the nine-year-old project to show traditional elephant trainers and camp owners the benefits of Positive Reinforcement Training for captive elephants and continuing our development work to give Thailand’s captive elephants greater freedom and environmental enrichment in their lives.

 

 

 

V Villas Hua Hin’s romanic beachfront St. Valentine’s Day dinner

V VILLAS HUA HIN is offering a a romantic evening on its Hua Hin Beach, with a five-course dinner, entertainment, and a complimentary small bottle of Moët & Chandon Champagne with special gifts this St. Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14.

Dine under the stars, barefoot and right on the beach at our specially decorated table just for two. Tables on V Villas’s lawn will also be provided.

A rose for the lady and our Valentine chocolate gift will be given on arrival, and a thrilling fire show and the resort’s live band will put just the right touches on a gorgeous night, accompanied by the gentle sound of the tide.

Dinner begins with pan-seared duck foie gras to prepare your palate for all the delicious dishes to come, every one more flavourful than the last. This is followed with La Noix de Saint Jacques, an edamame cream soup with grilled Hokkaido scallops; roasted red snapper or  Australian A5 wagyu beef with homemade truffle mashed potato; and an incredible indulgent La Tarte au Chocolat.

 

 

Anantara’s Jungle Bubble: Seeing elephants up close

ANANTARA GOLDEN TRIANGLE ELEPHANT CAMP & RESORT is giving guests an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to spend the night observing Thailand’s majestic elephants in their natural habitat while staying in unique transparent Jungle Bubbles.

Unfolding across 160 acres of Northern Thailand’s ancient jungle, Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort is perched on a hill overlooking the Mekong and Ruak rivers.  The secluded location is exclusively positioned to take in majestic three country views over the confluence of Thailand, Laos and Myanmar, and grazing elephants in the most stunning of natural settings below.

Located in the jungle, the two Jungle Bubbles are perched on raised wooden decks offering uninterrupted views of the elephants, as well as stargazing at night.

The Jungle Bubbles were custom designed by Eye In The Sky, and are constructed with high tech polyester fabric using exclusive Precontraint Serge Ferrari technology to create a milieu in which guests can enjoy an immersive, close-to-nature experience.

The well-appointed bubble accommodation is fully air-conditioned, offering 22 square metres of indoor floor space; a 4.5-diameter bedroom and living space with a king bed and seating area under a transparent roof; and an enclosed, non-transparent en-suite shower and vanity.

Intimate touches of bathrobes and slippers; crisp white bed linen; regular and feather pillows; and exquisite bathroom amenities provide convenient functions with the comfort of home.  A hair dryer, vanity and make up mirror are also provided.

Guests at Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort can purchase the Jungle Bubble experience as an optional activity and spend the night from dusk till dawn, returning to the hotel in the morning.  Rates start from 17,700 THB per night for two people and include a dinner basket; a fully stocked mini bar; 24-hour in-room dining service; and tea and coffee-making facilities.

Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort is world famous for its elephant camp that, along with the Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation (GTAEF), were set up primarily to help elephants that cannot help themselves: for those that find themselves, through abuse or through circumstance, unable to provide and maintain an income for themselves, for their mahouts and their families.

Here appropriate activities are designed that allow the elephant caretakers to raise the funds they need to look after the elephants without forcing them into activities they might not enjoy.

The introduction of the Jungle Bubbles at Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort is another world first that can be scaled and shared with other elephant camps to allow them to give a subset of elephants – those that prefer to only meet their mahouts and are bonded into friendship groups – a natural life in a manner that the elephants enjoy without becoming a financial strain on the operation.

 

 

COSI Samui Chaweng Beach helps bring creative arts to Koh Samui

CENTARA HOTELS & RESORTS is helping bring the creative arts to life at its COSI Samui Chaweng Beach Resort on the island of Koh Samui through the recently launched Samui Art Destination Project.

The project, which is co-sponsored by the Central Group’s CPN Property Development and Investment subsidiary and Central Festival Samui, brings six established and emerging Thai and international artists to Samui, providing each with a venue on the island for them to create new wall-sized original artworks.

While Koh Samui is well known for world-class beaches and scuba diving locales, the island offers a great diversity of attractions.

The Samui Art Destination Project will transform the city into a huge art gallery, where leading artists from across the globe express their creative visions freely and boldly while driving tourism to the island.

Famous Thai singer, Pod Thanachai, from the band ModernDog recently created a larger-than-life-size painting depicting the island’s wildlife on an interior wall provided by COSI Samui Chaweng Beach.

International artists participating in the project include Alex Face, Patricio Oliver, Shinichiro Kotai and Baron Ueda.

 

 

Ratilanna Chiang Mai’s Christmas and New Year’s celebations

A ROSE GOLD WREATH  will adorn Ratilanna Chiang Mai’s Celebration Christmas festive dining at Mira Restaurant, featuring Ratilanna’s favourite international buffet and relax by the magical setting with a few drinks on Christmas Eve, starting at 6.30 pm and ending at 9.30 p.m..

Surroundings include candle lights and with a beautiful view of the Ping River, and Carol singers who perform Christmas carols to celebrate this joyful evening. Everything you could wish for…

Cost of the buffet is 3,200 THB per person and 1,600 THB per child (3-12).

For table reservations or enquiries, e-mail to: info@ratilannachiangmai.com

Ratilanna’s New Year’s Dinner Party.s

Join our most colorful New Year’s Eve dinner party at RatiLanna Riverside Spa Resort Chiang Mai features an unforgettable extraordinary night in Neon Paradise along with an exclusive dinner set and fine dining.

The night in Neon Paradise party by the Ping River promises a vibrant mix of good vibes & music amidst a great crowd and all night long entertainments and celebration.

Mira Restaurant and River Lawn will be featuring an international barbecue buffet that includes free flow house wine, beers, soft drinks, and juices as well as a complimentary party pack & gifts to set the mood for the 2020 countdown party.

The party starts at 7 p.m. until 1 a.m.

Price per adult is 6,500 THB and 3,250 THB for chidren (3-12 years)

Highlights: International barbecued buffet spread with free flow house wine, beer, soft drinks and juices. Price:  6,500 THB per adult and 3,250 THB for Child (3-12 years)

For table reservations or enquiries, email to reservation@ratilannachiangmai.com

 

Get VIP access to Thailand’s Elephant Boat Race and River Festival

ANANTARA RIVERSIDE BANGKOK RESORT is giving guests’ front row VIP access to see all the action of the second annual Elephant Boat Race and River Festival, taking place on the banks of the mighty Chao Phraya River from Feb. 28 March 1, 2020.

Spectators will delight in a weekend of thrilling competitive action on the river as well as an extensive variety of family friendly, high quality entertainment on land including live music concerts, kid’s arts and crafts, fun fair rides and a wide selection of delicious food and beverages throughout the event.

On the river, teams will paddle specially designed boats decorated with artistic elephant themed sculptures with tails inspired by traditional Thai fish motifs.

Each race takes place across 400m with four teams per heat, the first to cross the finish line wins and progresses closer to winning the Royal trophy graciously granted by His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn Phra Vajiraklaochaoyuhua.

Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort is offering a special room package to guests looking to join in of this unique event. Guests who book two nights during the event will get free daily breakfast for two and two, one day VIP passes to the weekend festival.

A VIP pass entitles guests to witness the races from selected VIP areas along with free flow drinks all day.

Package includes: Two nights’ accommodation at Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort; daily breakfast for two tickets for two to the weekend festival; and VIP packages starts from US$ 496 for access to the VIP tents and free-flow drinks.

Rates quoted are per stay for two persons, and are subject to availability, guests must stay a minimum two-nights; a non-refundable, and one-night deposit is required seven days prior to arrival. In case of no shows or early departure, a 100% charge of the total stay applies.

For more information on applicable tariffs during your desired booking period, or to make a reservation, please contact our reservations desk on +66 23659100 or email reserveanantara@anantara.com

For more information on the Elephant Boat Race and River Festival please visit https://www.facebook.com/bangkokriverfestival/ or www.bangkokriverfestival.com

 

Centara launches  650 Million THB Room Upgrade at Flagship Bangkok Hotel

 CENTARA HOTELS & RESORTS has launched a much-anticipated renovation program at its five-star flagship, Centara Grand at CentralWorld Bangkok. The company is investing 650 million THB in the room improvement project, which will see a complete floor-to-ceiling renovation of all 505 guestrooms and suites, an undertaking that will happen two floors at a time to avoid disruption to the guest experience.

“This is an exciting project and a significant investment in Centara’s flagship hotel. The renovation program will enhance the guest experience with fully updated and refreshed guestroom interiors, amenities and advanced technologies, ensuring we will continue to deliver the kind of contemporary luxury experience that customers have come to expect from one of the market’s leading five-star properties said Thirayuth Chirathivat, CEO, Centara Hotels & Resorts.

 Centra is working with leading design firm P49 on the project, who are known for their high quality design solutions for luxury hospitality, residential and retail clients across the globe. The designs for the new room interiors draw inspiration from Thai artisans, textures and patterns and will create a modern and contemporary aesthetic that is in keeping with both the vibrant and international location of the hotel, as well as the brand’s inimitable Thai roots. Guestrooms, including bathrooms and furniture will be totally redesigned and upgraded and technology and connectivity will be installed at a standard reflecting the demands of today’s sophisticated travellers.

Centara Grand at CentralWorld Bangkok marked its 10-year anniversary earlier this year. Throughout its 10-year history, the 57-storey hotel has been a destination-of-choice among international tourists, business travellers and visitors attending events at the adjoining Bangkok Convention Centre. Along with spectacular views of the city from its guestrooms, restaurants and rooftop bars, and a direct connection to the adjacent CentralWorld mall, the hotel sits in the very heart of Bangkok’s shopping and business district.

The room improvement project is expected to complete in April 2021, and the hotel will be fully operational and carrying out business as usual throughout the project duration. This exciting upgrade will further reaffirm Centara Grand & Bangkok Convention Centre at CentralWorld’s position among the pre-eminent leisure and business hotels in Asia.

 

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