Category Archives: Thailand

Green & Chic | Soneva Kiri, Koh Kood, Thailand

By Dian Hasan | July 6, 2010

As a traveler, when eco-consciousness influences your travel destination and accommodation decision, you are assured of doing something good, by giving back to either the immediate community or environment. And when eco-consciousness meets good design, the end result is: ABSOLUTE BLISS!

As green-, eco-, and sustainable- related travel grows in popularity, architects and designers are taking notice. Conceiving better edifices that combine all the above, use of natural material, use of local produce, organic amenities, alternative energy, reduced carbon footprint, engaging and empowering local communities, and… the good list goes on.

Such efforts aren’t always easy, they’re not always economically feasible, but when done correctly, the fusion of man, built environment, and nature bring compelling result.

Such is the result of one such effort: the Soneva Kiri Resort in on Kood Island in Thailand. Conceived by Oxford-educated Sonu Shivdasani and his Swedish spouse, Eva, this dynamic Bangkok-based husband and wife team behind Six Senses have had eco-consciousness from the onset. Underlying all hotel concepts from their early days on the drawing board.

The hospitality company’s brand – Soneva – is a fusion of Sonu and Eva, and today the growing portfolio includes two resorts in The Maldives (Soneva Fushi and Soneva Gili) and their latest baby, Soneva Kiri in Thailand. Continue reading

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Exhilarating Asia ~ Extreme Kayaking in Phang Nga Bay, Thailand

By Dian Hasan | September 5, 2009

Asia offers a plethora of travel experience choices. The most challenging question choosing what type of experience you are seeking. From FIT, MICE, Medical, Business Travel, Sports, Showbiz, Shopping, Gourmet, Cultural, Wellness, to the micro-niches of Adventure-, Eco-, Humanitarian– and even VolunTourism, where you’ll find diving, surfing, birdwatching, and mountain cyclists, among the many subdivisions.

Which takes us back to Adventure Travel, that part of travel that exudes exploration, expedition, exhilaration… and excitement galore. Laced with adrenaline, enjoying the dwindling Asian landscapes that are changing fast… from pristine to precariously threatened. So let’s look at Thailand’s stunning Phang Nga Bay, near Phuket, and how to enjoy it via the unique adventure of Extreme Kayaking (as originally appeared in Playak).

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Sleek & Chic ~ Vijitt Resort, Phuket, Thailand

By Dian Hasan | May 13, 2009

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It seems that newer is not only better, but it also raises the hip quotient! Such is the latest hotel scene in Thailand. Gone are the days when large-scale hotel development would plant yet another concrete high rise with little personality, of the international chain genre. Today, everyone is opting for “small is beautiful”. Translated into boutique properties at a human scale offering personalized service, all wrapped in an exquisitely designed resort that is in touch with the nature’s precarious resources. Hence more eco-conscious. The new Vijitt Resort in Phuket best exemplifies this new approach. Continue reading

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Green & Chic ~ Let’s Sea Al Fresco Resort, Hua Hin, Thailand

By Dian Hasan | August 14, 2009

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When all else fails, what innovation do you bring to sustain your customers’ interest and ensure your product’s relevance? This seems to be the question that Thailand continues to ask itself in further developing its already fine offering of tourism products and services. And for Thailand’s hospitality industry, the answer seems to be DESIGN! And not just any design! One that has the unmistaken “WOW FACTOR”! A slew of new resort hotels – joined together in their common individuality and small boutique sizes – have popped up across the land of smiles. The hip Let’s Sea Al Fresco Resort in Hua Hin is one such contender. A chic resort that’s green at heart, going the distance to make “eco-chic” part of its philosophy!

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Sleek & Chic ~ Asara Villa & Suite, Hua Hin, Thailand

By Dian Hasan | August 14, 2009

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It seems that the toughest challenge in vacationing in Thailand, is choosing just the right resort that meets your taste. Thailand has been developing its modern tourism at a swift pace, and the approach of late has been to bring more personality into its hotels, a stark departure of big chain resorts that tend to be the same cookie cutter type. This new trend has introduced fascinating new resorts across the country, that mesmerize and surpass your expectation. One such place is Asara Villa & Suite in Hua Hin, Thailand.

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Chic Spa Destinations ~ The Barai, Hua Hin, Thailand

By Dian Hasan | August 13, 2009

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The Barai is one unforgettable spa with an interesting story. A whimsical spa that has to be experienced to be believed, created by leading Thai Architect, Lek Bunnag. Located within the Hyatt Regency Hua Hin compound, The Barai makes no apologies in using bold colors. It is as if you stumbled upon the work of Mexico’s Ricardo Legoretta that has been transplanted across the Pacific to Thailand. The deep red enhances the dramatic entrance that leaves a lasting impression. Little wonder that The Barai was named “Best Spa Design of the Year 2008” by the AsiaSpa publication.

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