KHAO SOK, THAILAND – Nestled among a plethora of palm trees under the soaring karst limestone mountains of Khao Sok National Park, Thanyamundra launches this Spring as a one-of-a-kind luxury retreat on a working organic farm.
The first-ever organic boutique resort in southern Thailand offers nine Asian antique filled rooms and suites in two modern, Thai inspired villas. Formerly the home of a European entrepreneur committed to health, fitness and sustainable living, Thanyamundra has been reimagined to deliver the finest hotel service, gourmet organic cuisine, and holistic wellness in one of Thailand’s most breathtaking natural environments at the edge of one of Earth’s oldest rainforests.
Two hours drive from Phuket International Airport, with its comprehensive regional and international air connections, Thanyamundra provides an easily accessible escape from urban life on the most intimate scale. Personal service under the leadership of butlers trained at some of Thailand’s finest hotels, an English-speaking chef with an extensive Thai and international repertoire and talented massage therapists on call are matched at Thanyamundra by visiting experts and teachers, world renowned in their fields, from sports to yoga and meditation to environmental science and visual arts.
Thanyamundra’s dedicated butlers lead their guests on arrival to the retreat’s seven elegant guest rooms and two spacious master suites split across the two contemporary villas. All are fully equipped with modern comforts from high-speed wireless Internet and LCD flat screen televisions to Thai silk interiors and spacious private bathrooms with separate rain showers. Suites with generous terraces overlook the verdant panorama of rice paddies and fruit trees to the wild bamboo jungle and ancient rock formations of Khao Sok National Park.
At all times of the year, Thanyamundra welcomes its guests, limited to twenty at a time, to explore the groundbreaking 12 hectare (1600 square metre) organic farm with charismatic Pierre Larigaldie who oversees these visionary crop fields. Since Larigaldie began preparing the earth here four years ago, all plantings have been 100% organic and chemical free and today Thanyamundra’s organic farm is the only one in southern Thailand with an Agricultural Certificate of Thailand (ACT), part of the International Organic Accreditation Service. Rows of aromatic Thai and Italian basil, dill, coriander and chilies run parallel to white and purple eggplants, red snake beans, winged peas, bitter gourd and morning glory, then onward to avocadoes, papaya, passion fruit, mango and a variety of banana trees.
Reach down to taste ingredients like fresh rocket leaves straight from the earth for sublime edible memories not soon forgotten. Guests are encouraged to pick their produce under the guidance of Thanyamundra’s dedicated chef who leads custom organic cooking classes back in the main villa’s show kitchen. Learn to make Thai classics like tom yum goong hot & sour soup or kaeng kheow waan green curry from entirely organic ingredients. Linger over all Thanyamundra’s fresh from the garden meals enhanced by sommelier selected Old and New World wines on the villa’s panoramic terrace as butterflies of kaleidoscopic hues flutter past, in the elegant Chinese style dining room with high back polished wood chairs or at a table specially set up outside among the retreat’s rustic natural charms, under the unpolluted, constellation filled sky.
Thanyamundra boasts a variety of invigorating fitness and leisure facilities. Swim laps or sun bathe alongside the 50-metre hilltop infinity pool, stay fit with the latest Technogym equipment in gym open around the clock, or take to the blissfully quiet surrounding roads for running or cycling. Equally restorative and invigorating are Thanyamundra’s Thai and holistic spa treatments, meditation, yoga and Pilates sessions.
To take full advantage of the surrounding national park, join Thanyamundra’s guided jungle trek with resident and visiting naturalists, in search of the lar gibbon whose females can be heard calling out on mist filled mornings, plus long-tailed macaque monkeys, Malay sun bears, tapirs, monitor lizards and even elephants and the endangered clouded leopard that inhabit Khao Sok National Park.
Guests who want to delve deeper into these exceptional natural surroundings may participate in the Thanyamundra Adventure Experience with river kayaking, tubing, lake swimming and elephant trekking inside the national park, active pursuits equally suited to corporate groups and incentive trips. In addition, individual guests or groups can work alongside the onsite farm team or reserve the entire farm to host uniquely memorable private functions for up to fifty.
Posted 11th May 2011, by admin, and filed under Hotel & Accommodation in Phuket, News Update, Phuket E-Magazine, Spa and Wellness in Phuket
COLLECTS ITS FIRST INTERNATIONAL ACCOLADE
Bill Bensley Designed Spa Scoops Runner-up for Best Luxury Resort Spa Award in Thailand at the 2011 World Luxury Spa Awards
Coqoon Spa at 5-star Phuket resort Indigo Pearl has collected its first international accolade within 6 months of opening in the 2011 World Luxury Spa Awards.
The new cutting-edge designer spa, best known for its unique mid-air treatment room ‘The Nest’, was voted runner-up in the Best Luxury Resort Spa category in Thailand.
Opened earlier this year, Coqoon Spa is styled as a ‘Garden of Eden’ in tropical rainforest and is the mastermind of Bangkok-based designer, Bill Bensley.
The spa’s architectural ‘pièce de résistance is ‘The Nest’, a luxurious treatment suite hovering 10-metres up in the branches of an ancient banyan tree bringing guests up close and personal with nature.
Coqoon Spa also features six deluxe treatment rooms and an exclusive ‘Coqoon Suite’ complete with its own accommodation, butler and private pool, as well as a rain shower, steam room, sauna and Vichy shower. Here guests can stay for up to 3-days to follow a tailored programme of health, wellness and nutritional advice and therapies.
Its treatments menu is steeped in Thai tradition whilst embracing holistic ideals in the pursuit of better health and wellness. On offer is a range of aromatic body treatments, scrubs and wraps, Anne Semonin facial treatments, hand and foot care, and beauty treatments. Rare plant essences, Andaman elixirs and Thai herbal spices excite the senses and rejuvenate the mind, body and spirit.
The World Luxury Spa Awards recognise spas setting global benchmarks in quality, innovation and exceptional service.
They are part of The World Luxury Hotel Awards (www.luxuryhotelawards.com) that celebrate “ultimate achievement in hoteliering”, congratulating “exceptional hotels” for world class facilities and service excellence.
Coqoon Spa is adorned throughout in silvery-blue palms and hues of plumbago. It takes the typical ‘zen’ approach to spas and gives it a lively / unusual twist with industrial touches and a fresh colour scheme.
Bill Bensley is best known for his holistic approach of integrating structures with nature while embracing local art forms. He says his philosophy aligns with the Indonesian phrase lebih gila, lebih biak, which means ‘the more odd, the better’..
The acclaimed 5-star Indigo Pearl is a fusion of modern architecture and Thai tin-mining heritage next to Nai Yang Beach, just 10 minutes from Phuket International Airport.
The resort has been hailed as a design masterpiece by global media publications and boasts easy access with direct flights to Phuket from almost everywhere in Asia.
For bookings or enquires please email email@example.com call +66 (0)76 327 006.
Further information about Indigo Pearl, please visit: http://www.indigo-pearl.com/
Posted 10th May 2011, by admin, and filed under Hotel & Accommodation in Phuket, News Update, Phuket E-Magazine
4th April 2011, Thailand- Impiana Hotels, Resorts and Spas is pleased to announce the appointment of Ms Femke Beekers as Villa Manager for its 6-star Impiana Private Villas, Kata Noi, Phuket.
Femke joined Impiana from HMS, which managed Allamanda, a Best Western brand. Femke has over 20 years of industry experience. She started her travel & hospitality career in Thailand as a hostess in 2000 and later as Guest Relations. From there, she moved on to managing several family owned and international boutique hotels & resorts.
In 2003, Femke left the hotel industry for travel industry to set up her own agency Siam Connexion. After several successful years and having gained solid insight of the travel world, she was recruited by Samui Peninsula as Director of Sales & Marketing. There, she managed several successful special events and weddings. She was later promoted to the rank of Resort Manager. Under her stewardship, she lead the pre-opening team of a new hotel namely Samaya Bura.
Posted 10th May 2011, by admin, and filed under Event Update, Hotel & Accommodation in Phuket, Phuket E-Magazine, Sport Event
Phuket Property Dot Com Pro Am Invitational
30 world-class golf professionals to take part; Monies raised go to Phuket Has Been Good To Us Foundation
Organisers are building on the success of the sell-out 2010 event.
05 May 2011, PHUKET – The Phuket Property Dot Com Pro Am Invitational returns to Phuket, 17th June at Laguna Phuket Golf Club. Following the inaugural 2010 sell-out success, organisers expect upto 30 touring golf professionals and 90 amateurs to take part in Phuket’s biggest golf day, and raise money for the Phuket Has Been Good To Us Foundation.
A number of top golf professionals from the Asian Tour and OneAsia tours have confirmed their participation, including Simon Yates, two-time winner on the Asia Tour; Thai star Udorn Duangdecha, winner of Thailand’s King’s Cup in 2010; Singapore number one Lam Chih Bing; Bangladeshi golf star Siddikur, and two-time winner and Rookie-Of-The-Year Rikard Karlberg.
Former pro on the LPGA tour Kelly Leadbetter will also be taking part, together with her son Andy Leadbetter, Asia’s premier teaching professional. The name Leadbetter is synonymous with golf worldwide, with the David Leadbetter Golf Academy, started by Kelly and Andy’s father, being the number one golf teaching academy in the world.
Phuket is one of the most popular golf destinations in Asia with direct flights from Europe and Australia. The Island’s golf tourism is a multi-million dollar business. Golf tourism currently accounts for 5% of holiday visitors to Thailand, yet accounts for 10% of spending. The Phuket Property Dot Com Pro Am Invitational is the Island’s first and only Pro Am event, shining the international spotlight on golfing in Phuket.
In 2010, the Phuket Property Dot Com Pro Am Invitational raised 500,000THB for the Phuket Has Been Good To Us Foundation. Organisers hope to raise even more this year, with a portion of entry fees and a charity auction at the Gala Dinner with prizes in excess of 350,000THB, helping to contribute to the chosen charity.
Expressing his commitment to the event and to the charity, Peter Bolton, Co-Founder of PhuketProperty.com and Title Sponsor of the event for the second year, said “We’re delighted to be involved again this year. Last year was the inaugural event and feedback from both pros and amateurs was very positive. We hope this year to build on that success and raise even more money for the Phuket Has Been Good To Us Foundation.”
The Phuket Property Dot Com Pro Am Invitational will take place Friday 17th June at the award-winning Laguna Phuket Golf Club, followed by a Gala Dinner at B-Lay Tong Resort, Patong. The price for Laguna Phuket Golf Club members is 6,000THB, and 8,000THB for non-members. To register, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sponsors of the 2011 Phuket Property Dot Com Pro Am Invitational, include Title Sponsor PhuketProperty.com; Official Golf Sponsor Laguna Phuket Golf Club; Hole Sponsors Baan Rim Pa, Da Maurizio Bar Ristorante, Joe’s Downstairs, Lee Marine, LoudMouth, Lhin’s Golf Guide, Serenity Resort & Residences Phuket, Sunseeker, The Yamu; Official Hotel Sponsor The Nap Patong; Supporting Hotels Absolute World Group, Banyan Tree Phuket, Serenity Resort & Residences Phuket; Official Gala Dinner Ambrose Wine Ltd, B-Lay Tong Resort; and Official Media Partners Phuket Gazette, PGTV and 91.5FM.
For more information, visit www.ProAm-Phuket.com.
How can YOU help the Gibbons ?
More Detail of the Rehabilitation Process
When a gibbon comes to GRP it receives a medical check, including blood tests for various diseases and then undergoes a quarantine period. Before the gibbons are ready for release they are put through a long rehabilitation program. This involves going through a series of environments, which encourage their natural behaviors and provides them with the opportunity to practice brachiating, to eat natural foods and have maximum contact with other gibbons and minimum contact with humans. Juvenile gibbons are put together and adults are given the chance to form pairs. Large cages as well as the different environments are used as stepping stones for the gibbons, which are eventually released back into the rainforest. Here, after a long acclimatization period, the gibbons will learn to survive by themselves. Continuous research is carried out to assess the gibbons’ development at each stage and follow-up studies are done after the release.
Not all the gibbons we get meet the criteria for rehabilitation and some do not make it to the release stage. With these animals we provide small artificial islands on which they can live their live free from a cage but with no chance of harm to themselves or others.
What other Work does the GRP do ?
As well as rehabilitating Gibbons, the GRP also :
- Informs tourists about the conservation issues relating to Gibbons – both at our rehabilitation site and by visiting popular tourists beaches.
- Runs an education program via visiting local schools. In these visits we inform the students about the rainforest, Gibbons and other animals that within it. Through this education program, we aim to reduce poaching and deforestation as well as gaining support fo our project and for the conservation movement in Thailand.
The GRP is an effective resource for teaching the local community and foreign tourists and it attracts international students who wish to study gibbons. Gibbon conservation is not a problem unique to Thailand and what we learn here is passed on to other projects with similar aims.
The Gibbons Rehabilitation Project (GRP)
The GRP is a research division of the Wild animal Rescue Foundation of Thailand (WAR). It was established in 1992 by Khun Noppadol Preuksawan, the chief of the Royal Forest Department in Phuket, and the Asian Wildlife Fund, with support from WARF. Terrace Dillon Morin was also a driving force. The project’s goal is to save gibbons and their rainforest habitat through rehabilitation and education. We are a Thai run organization and the only group doing this in Thailand.
What are gibbons ?
Gibbons are small, monogamous, territorial apes that live in the upper canopy of the lowland rainforests of South East Asia. These apes have a unique form of locomotion – an arm to arm swinging movement called brachiating. Also unique to gibbons are their loud territorial songs, which can be heard for several kilometers in the rainforest. In the wild, gibbons feed mainly on fruit, leaves, flowers and insects. They can live for more than thirty years. The GRP works with white-handed gibbons (Hylobates lar); the most widespread of the four species of gibbon found in Thailand.
Why are there Gibbons at the GRP ?
On Phuket and other parts of Thailand, Gibbons are illegally kept as pets and as tourist attractions. The only way to get a young Gibbon is to take it from the wild by first shooting its’ mother and father. Most of these babies are then used on the beach or the street where tourists pay money to have photographs taken with them. No matter what the owner of these Gibbons may tell you, what they are doing is illegal. As a result of illegal poaching, much of the rainforest in Thailand is under-populated with gibbons. At the GRP we work with gibbons which have been taken away by the police or handed in by their owners. We try to rehabilitate these in an effort to repopulate the rainforest where gibbons once lived. This is a long process that can take many years. Sadly, until they can be re-released into the wild, these Gibbons must be kept in the cages.