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Palace Hotel Tokyo Unveils New Premier Suites

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Palace Hotel Tokyo Unveils New Premier Suites - - TRAVELINDEXTokyo, Japan, May 9, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / In celebration of Palace Hotel Tokyo’s tenth anniversary this May, the highly acclaimed property is cutting the ribbon on a new category of suites. Six Premier Suites were officially unveiled this month, adding a mid-range category to the hotel’s now-seven categories of suites, which range in size from 75 square meters to 250 square meters (810 – 2,690 square feet).

The hotel turned to the award-winning, luxury hospitality design firm that originally fashioned its interiors, G.A Group, to envision the new suites. Drawing on the elegant-simplicity aesthetic the hotel is known for and taking into account the growing demand for luxury accommodations that cater to longer-stay guests, the property conceived the 90-square-meter (970-square-foot) Premier Suites to better suit business and leisure travelers who desire more space for work and play.

“The luxury market has proven to be very resilient, as there’s always a demand for hotel suites tantamount to pied-à-terres among those accustomed to traveling the world and expecting their accommodations to exude the same level of luxury and sophistication as their own homes,” said Daisuke Yoshihara, president of Palace Hotel Co., Ltd. about the decision to expand the hotel’s offerings. “The addition of these new suites exemplifies our company’s commitment to continuously raising the bar on the products and services that we offer.”

Each Premier Suite’s living space features two distinct areas – a spacious lounge with ample seating and a separate, multi-purpose space in which to dine or work. In the bedroom, which comes outfitted with a dressing table, a walk-through closet leads to an ensuite bathroom with double vanity and separate soaking tub and rain shower. Guests can choose between a king-size bed or two oversized twin beds.

Spread over floors 10 – 15 of the hotel, each of the new suites features two separate balconies on which to dine alfresco while taking in views of Wadakura Fountain Park, the Imperial Palace gardens and the city skyline beyond. In keeping with the original design directive, the verdant landscape surrounding the property served as inspiration for the interiors, with textural elements and an earthy color palette of mossy green, soft browns and light taupe being drawn from the natural environment.

A number of design features add a sense of warmth and richness to the space, including polished timber floors, plush fabric wall coverings and bespoke rugs patterned to echo the wabi sabi beauty of moss as it emerges from untended spaces. Decorative elements range from contemporary Japanese ink wash paintings to sculptural porcelain and ceramic pieces.

The furnishings and artwork are all original and exclusive to Palace Hotel Tokyo, most having been commissioned specifically for the new suites. Curated by Art Front Gallery, the art pieces were all done by contemporary Japanese artists and chosen to reflect the hotel’s connection to nature and the beauty of its surroundings. Japanese sumi (ink wash) paintings reflecting award-winning artist Naoto Sunohara’s abstract, aerial perspectives on the vast Imperial Palace gardens and the green-roofed palace buildings situated within hang prominently in each suite.

In addition to the artwork, the destination is further reflected in uniquely Japanese touches such as the bath linens made in Imabari – a city renowned for over a century for the quality of its towel production – the nambu-tekki cast iron teapots, tea cups handmade in the traditional Mashiko-yaki style of pottery, and Echizen lacquerware tea cup saucers.

For optimum flexibility, each Premier Suite can be expanded into a two-bedroom unit when the adjoining Club Deluxe King or Twin with Balcony room is also booked. Suite guests also enjoy Club Lounge access and privileges, which include private check-in, check-out and concierge service as well as daily breakfast, afternoon tea and evening cocktails and canapés. A private meeting room that seats up to six as well as an outdoor terrace offering captivating vistas of Tokyo round out the 172-square-meter (1,851-square-foot) space’s facilities.

“There’s been a noticeable increase in the amount of time our guests spend on-property – particularly among domestic travelers, but also overseas business professionals traveling on tight schedules who prefer to host their meetings and entertainment at the hotel,” said Masaru Watanabe, Palace Hotel Tokyo’s senior managing director and general manager. “So, it’s important that we continue to adapt and expand our offerings to suit the ever-evolving lifestyles of our diverse clientele. With the debut of these new suites, we have every expectation that our guests will want to linger even longer.”

Premier Suites start from JPY 288,000++ per night.

First published at – Global Travel News

Celebrating Mother’s Day Around Asia

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Celebrating Mother’s Day Around Asia - TRAVELINDEXFrom indulgent spa therapies to special stay packages that the whole family can enjoy (and we mean multiple generations), we’ve rounded up a range of Mother’s Day offers from around Asia that might just make the perfect gift this May.   

Slowing Down at Fusion Resort Phu Quoc
This Mother’s Day Fusion Resort Phu Quoc is taking things slow – really slow. To mark the special day on the tropical island mothers and their children are invited to take part in a Slow Bike Race, where the winner is whoever takes the longest to cross the finish line. Riders can enjoy ocean views as the pace of the race comes almost to a standstill. The winners will receive a free adult and kids beverage. Later in the evening, the all-villa resort property is offering a Seafood Date Night by the pool with a multi-course meal and wine being served up for VND 2,800,000 ++ (USD 122++) for two. The highlight of the feast is a seafood platter with grilled red snapper in banana leaf, king prawns, calamari, scallops, and oysters. 

Afternoon Tea Beside a Moat at Palace Hotel Tokyo
For an impressive treat this Mother’s Day book a table for the hotel’s ever-popular afternoon tea at The Palace Lounge. Though many hotels invoke the majesty of the word palace, few can claim such palatial trappings as a moat. The Palace can.The property’s regal waterside setting can be enjoyed on Grand Kitchen’s outdoor terrace, or through the floor to ceiling windows of The Palace Lounge while enjoying high tea. The springtime selection features dishes like blanc manger made with steamed turnip, bitter field mustard flowers sauced with grainy mustard, and the subtle texture of bamboo shoots steamed with rice, along with an array of sweet treats – all artfully presented in an elegant, three-tiered jyubako lacquered box. The Spring Afternoon Tea set is JPY6,200 or JPY8,800 if you’d like to add a glass of champagne. For further indulgence the hotel’s evian SPA, is currently offering Mother’s Day Gift certificates (JPY27,000) for a 75-minute facial and eye care treatment using warew, a premium Japanese beauty brand, that uses natural botanical ingredients, grown in Japan since ancient times. Mothers will be gifted a warew gift set of trial size bottles on the day of their appointment. 

​​Alma Resort Cam Ranh
Thirty-hectare beachfront resort Alma on Vietnam’s scenic Cam Ranh peninsula is offering a two-night getaway suited to multigenerational travel in celebration of Mother’s Day this year. Priced at 30,432,000 VND (USD 1330), the Mother’s Day offer is anchored by a stay from May 6-8 for up to seven adults and two children in a contemporary three-bedroom ocean view pavilion with a private pool and terrace affording vistas of Long Beach. With a spacious living room and four bathrooms, the pavilion totals 224sqm and is designed to accommodate family members across the entire age spectrum, spanning two, three and even four generations. A welcome cake on arrival, daily breakfast, a buffet lunch, dinner at one of Alma’s restaurants, such as beachfront restaurant Atlantis that specializes in fresh seafood and Italian fine-dining restaurant La Casa, and a 20 per cent discount on additional F&B and treatments at Le Spa are among the getaway’s inclusions. Activities such as making Vietnamese fresh spring rolls at Atlantis, taking family photos at street-style venue Chill’s Snack & Bar featuring American-style food trucks, watching movies under the stars at Alma’s Amphitheater and more are also on offer to pay tribute to mothers. For further information,  call +84 258 399 1666.

A Dining Treat for Mother in Phnom Penh
The culinary team at Raffles Hotel Le Royal have taken some of the tastiest recipes handed down from their mothers to compile a special menu that will run all week. From May 2 – 6, reserve a table for two for either lunch or dinner, and your mother will receive a free Lillet cocktail to complement her dining experience. Or, from May 2- 8, at the new Le Phnom 1929 restaurant in the hotel’s west wing, an Afternoon Tea set will be available, which will include a complimentary bottle of Prosecco for all mothers. And on May 8, there’s a Swim n’ Brunch event at Le Royal’s iconic poolside,where from 11am- 3pm families can choose from that same menu of mother-inspired recipes, as well as BBQ, cocktails and Champagne. In the evenings during Mother’s Day week, the hotel’s Elephant Bar will be in a festive mood with live music. Dance the night away at the Mojo Afterworks party, which will include a selection of tapas and oysters, as well as special Ladies Night drinks. For reservations, call +855 23 981 888

First published at – Global Travel News

Calver Tips Vietnam to Regain Status as Golf Travel’s Biggest Noise

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Calver Tips Vietnam to Regain Status as Golf Travel’s Biggest Noise - - TRAVELINDEXLang Co, Vietnam, April 25, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / Pre-pandemic the buzz about Vietnam’s golf courses was almost as loud as the motorbike horns that soundtrack daily life in major cities like Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi.

And Adam Calver, director of golf at Laguna Golf Lang Co and a driving force in Vietnam Golf Coast — a destination marketing organization that links Central Vietnam’s best signature golf courses — has tipped the nation to become an even bigger noise in golf travel following its reopening to international visitors in March 2022.

“Asia’s top golf destination is not just recovering following the pandemic: it’s getting even better,” he said.

In recent years, Vietnam has forged a reputation as Asia’s ultimate bucket-list golf destination.

Big-name architects including Sir Nick Faldo (designer of Laguna Golf Lang Co), Jack Nicklaus, Greg Norman, and Robert Trent Jones Jr have made their mark with a string of incredible layouts the length and breadth of the Southeast Asian country.

Global accolades for the nation, meanwhile, including the coveted title of World’s Best Golf Destination at the 2021 World Golf Awards, fueled pent-up demand for travel during a period when Vietnam’s borders remained largely closed.

Nobody involved in Vietnam’s tourism industry expects visitor numbers to immediately bounce back to pre-pandemic levels. But golf industry insiders like Calver predict a bright future for clubs in Vietnam following the reopening, pointing to a growing contingent of layouts that are maintaining the country’s reputation for quality.

“A lot has been going on here (in Vietnam) during the pandemic,” said Calver. “New courses have been popping up all over the country so golfers who have visited Vietnam in the past have a number of new courses to experience when they return.

“For example, many golfers won’t have been in Central Vietnam since 2019. We already had five great championship courses here at that time. Now, with the addition of Hoiana Shores and the second course at BRG Danang Golf Resort (a Nicklaus design), we have seven.”

Like other layouts around the country, Laguna Golf Lang Co has been forced to contend with stern challenges posed by the pandemic over the course of the past couple of years. But the club, which recently ranked #88 on Golf World’s Top 100 Golf Resorts in the World list, is training its sights on a major resurgence over the coming months.

At Laguna Golf Lang Co, two award-winning resorts – Angsana Lang Co and Banyan Tree Lang Co as well as the ultra-luxe Banyan Tree Residences and the Laguna Park Golf Villas along the 18th hole just a hundred meters from the clubhouse and the beach – round out one of Asia’s most attractive stay/play packages. Indeed, the club is witnessing an uptick in bookings from various key international markets including Korea and Europe as well as from domestic travelers.

“Demand is surging here once again,” added Calver. “Before, I would have said that anyone serious about golf travel should be coming to Vietnam at least once in their life. With world-class courses opening all the time, I would revise that to say that you’d need to return every few years to do the place justice.”

First published at – Global Travel News

How the Pandemic Changed Food Self-Sufficiency at Hotels

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How the Pandemic Changed Food Self-Sufficiency at Hotels - TRAVELINDEXHo Chi Minh City, March 9, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / The hospitality industry has sputtered in fits and starts throughout the pandemic as case counts and quarantines have had their way with us, but there were aspects of the hotel business that literally came to life over the past two years. As the number of guests dwindled, many hotels invested in the land, cultivating gardens, farms and orchards to support staff and move towards a more sustainable model of operating.

“Over the last two years the world has really woken up to wellness,” said Hylton Lipkin, GM of Alba Wellness Valley by Fusion, a natural hot spring resort in Vietnam that has long prided itself on its commitment to health. “But what kind of wellness? Is it physical wellness, mental wellness, or environmental wellness? They’re all connected and this was an integral time for us to deepen our framework to honor all the various facets of what that word means, especially when it comes to food.”

Located on an expansive plot of land on the outskirts of Vietnam’s former imperial capital Hue, Alba had the space to make a difference. More time was invested in the 250m2 organic vegetable plot, to ensure restaurant and staff canteen needs could be met. With more than 150 cage-free chickens on their farm, they became the first resort property in Vietnam to use only 100% cage free eggs.

Fusion, as a brand, has made a number of eco-strides during the course of the pandemic. Fusion Resort Cam Ranh, on Vietnam’s south central coast, is now home to around 200 cage-free chickens, ducks, goats, and even peacocks. Their flourishing organic vegetable garden and mango orchard, spread over 3,100m2, partially supplies fresh vegetables and herbs to the resort’s restaurants and staff canteen. The resort also has over 1,000 coconut trees, with all the organic young fresh coconuts now being served up in the resort restaurant. Previously they were removed at a young stage and not harvested.

“We wanted to involve our guests in all these new initiatives as we believe this is the way forward,” said Dawid Koegelenberg. “It’s an opportunity for guests to learn the importance of where their food comes from.” Guests are free to pick their own organic vegetables and collect eggs for breakfast, while young visitors can attend a farm school on weekends to learn how to care for animals.

Fusion Resort Phu Quoc, on Vietnam’s largest island, introduced an eco-farm in the summer of 2021. An eclectic array of animals from goats to ducks as well as a new vegetable garden and pineapple orchard, that guests have access to, have been added.

At the opposite end of the country in the remote Northern Delta region, Meliá Ba Vi Mountain Retreat, is also cultivating land.

“We are located in a mountainous area of the country and are quite far from local suppliers,” explained Noemi Perez, general manager of the property.  “Our organic garden has allowed us to reduce transportation costs and the impact on the environment, while allowing for a consistent food supply when the city was locked down during COVID.”

The Balansa organic garden, named after the French botanist Benjamin Balansa, is thriving with a range of vegetables including kale, broccoli, arugula, radish, celery, lettuce, green pepper, tomatoes, and a range of herbs that are used in the restaurant, spa, and the staff canteen. Leftovers are returned to the earth and each day the property composts approximately 100 pounds (45 kilograms) of organic and biodegradable waste.

Another Meliá property, Meliá Ho Tram Beach Resort, started their Spice Garden in response to a shortage of vegetables during the ongoing lockdown.

“Our staff were encouraged to start small, by planting a few fast-growing vegetables and spices that were used in cooking meals,” said Nishant Uniyal, Meliá Ho Tram hotel manager. “From these humble beginnings the project has grown into so much more. We’re now growing a wide variety of different herbs and vegetables such as chili, lemongrass, zucchini, and tomatoes, all of which are free of chemicals.”

The garden is set to play a role in the resort’s offering with plans in the works to roll out a range of fun, free gardening activities for guests. These include painting pots, flower puzzling, leaf crafts, and making herb-infused essential oils.

“We want to engage the next generation, so they can experience gardening as a fruitful activity that preserves the environment while also providing the opportunity for getting together with family and friends,” added Uniyal.

The team at the Bali property, Tanah Gajah, a Resort by Hadiprana, also dug in when the pandemic hit. They switched to a farm-to-staff-table approach and started a new nursery to supplement the main garden, planting herbs and vegetables (shallots, onions, garlic, chili, turnips, morning glory, etc) that grew quickly, in order to support the food needs of staff.

Siddhartha Oceanfront Resort & Spa, two hours northeast from Tanah Gajah, cultivated a thriving vegetable garden in an area of the island known for its volcanic soil, which is not conducive to farming. They developed a waste separation system where all food and garden waste is composted and used again on the land. The gardens that were first planted last year, have become part of the landscaping and wind their way throughout the property.

“It’s been a trial and error process and we’ve had to remain adaptive,” said the co-owner of the resort, Stefan Brand. “When we first planted we chose easy to grow crops but since all of the yield is going to the staff and their families, we needed to switch that and make a concerted effort to grow foods that are familiar to them.”

“The pandemic planted the seed for this initiative and we look forward to seeing the fruits of our labor for years to come,” added Brand.

First published at – Global Travel News

International Women’s Day Celebrations Across Asia

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International Women’s Day Celebrations Across Asia - TRAVELINDEXSofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi – Metropole Hanoi is offering several exclusive dining options to mark International Women’s Day. Wonderland by Le Beaulieu, home to fine French cuisine, is serving a special four-course set menu (VND 2.1 million), with an optional wine pairing (VND 3.5 million). At angelina cocktail bar, whisky lounge and New World restaurant, the exclusive Women’s Day set menu features a three-course meal and a special welcome cocktail (VND 2 million). And Le Club Bar, which overlooks the hotel’s garden courtyard, is offering two exclusive buffets: a lunch buffet (VND 2 million) and a dinner buffet (VND 2.2 million). For more information on these special menus in celebration of International Women’s Day on March 8, or to make a reservation, contact Metropole Hanoi’s food and beverage department at Tel: 024 3826 6919 ext. 8200

Azerai La Residence, Hue
In Vietnam’s former imperial capital, Azerai La Residence, Hue is marking International Women’s Day with a special menu for couples on March 8. The four-course meal priced at VND 550,000 per person starts with a bowl of French onion soup, followed by Iberico ham, tropical fruit salad, mini mozzarella and carrot jam. The main course offers a choice of pan-fried salmon with teriyaki sauce, radish stew and sauteed baby broccoli or a grilled rib-eye steak, pear potato au gratin and morel sauce. Dessert is a coffee crème caramel. Parties of 10 or more people who order the set menu receive one voucher for a spa treatment at Le Spa (valued at VND 1,360,000), and all guests in the group will receive a free party cocktail. For more information, or to make a booking, contact the hotel directly at +84 (0) 234 3837 475

Alma Cam Ranh
A high heel competition, live music, and movie night under the stars are among the festivities to be staged at Alma Resort to pay tribute to International Women’s Day on March 8.  Pink milk tea and cake will be served from 5pm-10pm at the resort’s hip and happening new street style venue Chill’s Snack & Bar featuring two American style food trucks to a backdrop of the resort’s vast amphitheater.  Entertainment includes live music by the resort’s resident singer Engie and an acoustic guitarist and competitions such as a high heel competition and a separate high walking competition, with prizes including dessert and discounts on the bill.  From 8pm – 10pm Captain Marvel will be screened at the amphitheater under the stars. For more information, or to make a booking, call +84 258 399 1666

Banyan Tree Samui
In honor of the myriad remarkable accomplishments of women around the world, Banyan Tree Spa Samui has introduced a special spa offer throughout the month of March. Any guest or visitor booking a one-hour facial treatment will receive an additional 30-minute complimentary massage of their choice. In addition, a 20% savings applies for any 60-minute journey through the resort’s award-winning hydrotherapy facility, The Rainforest, where they will alternate between saunas, sprays, showers, and a series of water jets, ensuring a rigorous but rejuvenating full-body experience. Ladies are also invited to consider Banyan Tree Samui’s “Tailored for the Senses” promotion, whereby they can create their own wish-list of relaxing spa treatments (90 mins 6,500 THB; 120 mins 8,000 THB; 150 mins 9,500 THB) from the following blissful options: body massage; body scrub; facial; calming bath; and body conditioner. For reservations, call: 077-915-333.

Raffles Hotel Le Royal, Phnom Penh
The city’s most historic hotel is rolling out a veritable bouquet of events for International Women’s Day, beginning on March 6 from 11am – 3pm with Le Royal’s “Women’s Day Swim & Brunch” which will be hosted poolside and will include a barbeque, Bloody Marys, Champagne, and Lillet Spitz cocktails ($55++ brunch only, $80 with drinks; and $100 with Champagne), as well as pool access. Then, on March 8 from 6pm – 10pm, visitors are invited to a curated menu inspired by the visit of former US First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy in 1967. Welcome cocktails will be served to all ladies, and the 4-course dinner set costs just $US58 per head (additional $32 with wine pairings). Meanwhile, in the iconic Elephant Bar, a line-up of female artistes will perform from 7:30pm every evening from March 8pm – 11pm. Promotions include French oysters (US$3 each), and free-flow Mojo wines and Prosecco ($22 for 2 hours). For reservations, call (+855) 23 981 888.

First published at – Global Travel News

Culinary Treats Across Asia

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Culinary Treats Across Asia - - TRAVELINDEXTokyo, Japan, Febrary 27, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / From Tokyo to Thailand, we’ve rounded up an array of novel dining experiences at hotels and resorts across Asia.

Essence of Japan Cocktails in Tokyo
Our senses transport us – whether it be a certain scent that ignites a memory or a flavor that delivers our minds to a different location. In the heart of Japan’s largest city, Palace Hotel Tokyo is tapping into that ability to transcend through taste with “Essence of Japan.” The cocktail collaboration includes a collection of eight drinks inspired by ryokan (traditional Japanese inns) spread across Japan. The eight inns chosen come from The Ryokan Collection and are some of the finest in the country. The cocktails have been created by Lounge Bar Privé’s bartender Akira Miyashita with ideas and carefully selected ingredients from each of the ryokans. One example is the drink “Snow Garden,” which is a nod to Zaborin in Hokkaido. A snowfall of powdered sugar adorns a fruity crimson cocktail of apple brandy and Zaborin original apple juice from a local producer. The “Tea Ceremony with Omotenashi” looks to Sumiya in Kyoto. The concoction is a sparkling cocktail with the aroma of Kyoto gin and matcha and is an expression of the tea ceremony culture and wabi aesthetics of the popular tourist destination. The drink selection is available till March 18th, 2022 and each drink is JPY 2,180.

Discover Asia’s Best Fine Dining Restaurants at

Alma Cam Ranh’s Singing Cooks and Waiters
It’s no secret that good music enhances the flavor or any dish, as readily as the right dash of this, the right teaspoon of that. In Vietnam, they’re doubling down on the enhancement factor by having kitchen staff repurpose ladles as microphones. Waiters and cooks at Alma on Cam Ranh peninsula are belting out medleys of classic hits at La Casa restaurant. With ladles, pans and tambourines in hand, and with a live piano as a foundation, the apron-and-toque donning Alma Choir break into song and dance as suddenly as a flash mob to perform international and Vietnamese tunes including Abba’s Mamma Mia, Boney M’s Rivers of Babylon and Nguyễn Hồng Thuận’s Xinh Tươi Viet Nam (Beautiful Vietnam). What began as a group of staff banding together to sing Christmas carols in the weeks leading up to Alma’s debut in late December 2019 has matured into a professional outfit under the stewardship of Alma’s resident pianist Ben Guillen, who has a background in musical arrangement. He says the response from the diners at La Casa, a sophisticated and capacious dining setting seating up to 164 guests has been so positive “some customers have danced on their seats”.

Meliá Chiang Mai’s ‘360° Cuisine’ Program
The first five-star hotel to debut in Chiang Mai in Thailand’s mountainous north since the onset of the global pandemic is embracing sustainability and promoting healthy eating with its ‘360° Cuisine’ concept. Suksant Chutinthratip (Billy), the executive chef at Meliá Chiang Mai, a 260-key urban hotel due to open April 8 on Charoen Prathet Road, has crafted dishes that include produce from the hotel’s organic farm and use every part of each ingredient possible before leftovers are returned to the farm as compost. Billy’s emphasis on “thoughtful cooking” is encapsulated in signature dishes such as ‘Khao Khaab Hor Goong’, a chilled prawn salad wrapped in sesame rice paper, with piquillo peppers, fried tofu, fermented rice noodles and fresh Vietnamese mint, and ‘Pla Muek Yang Som’, a grilled marinated octopus salad with caramelized Valencia orange, red radish and orange dressing. “For Khao Khaab Hor Goong we use the prawn shells, prawn heads and garden herb stems for our stock base to poach the prawns, and lemon zest as part of the sauce to give a disarming citrus smell and flavor, before the leftover cooking oil is sent to be recycled into biodiesel,” Billy says.

Vietnamese Feasts at Maia Resort Quy Nhon
Maia Resort Quy Nhon knows that the journey to any traveler’s heart often requires a detour through the stomach. The gastronomically-driven all-villa resort, along Vietnam’s southern coast, is offering several different culinary-themed packages that will leave no bellies growling. The “Xuan Maia” packages range from one to five nights. Each option immerses guests in the culinary offerings of this oceanfront property. The three night option includes the choice of one of the resort’s signature culinary experiences: Once Upon a Table at ad hoc restaurant, Barefoot Destination Dining, a Privately Curated Dining Experience, Afternoon High-Tea, or Gastronomy by Maia. Executive Chef Komang Widarta has created menus that are inspired by the local culture and the kind of cuisine you’d find at a Vietnamese family reunion. Other highlights of a three-night stay include a daily treatment at Vela Spa, the choice of a family style lunch or dinner at Vi Restaurant overlooking Quy Nhon Bay, and a one-time complimentary upgrade to daily half board.

Three Exclusive Culinary Offerings at Azerai Can Tho​​
In Vietnam’s Mekong Delta, Azerai Can Tho has introduced three exclusive new culinary offerings that take advantage of the resort’s unique setting on a lush private islet. These special meals include “Romance Under the Banyan Tree,” (VND 2,200,000 per person) a candlelit table-for-two surrounded by lanterns and set under one of the property’s mature banyan trees. The dinner includes a set Western menu plus a cocktail. The daytime “Picnic by the River” (VND 998,750++) features a cozy set-up on the lawn overlooking the Hau River and includes a choice of three set lunch menus. The “Secret Romantic Dinner by the River” (VND 2,588,000 per person) offers a choice of a multi-course Western or Vietnamese set menu, plus a glass of sparkling wine. Azerai Can Tho is home to 60 rooms and five private-pool villas and is a three-hour drive from Ho Chi Minh City. Azerai’s lush grounds cover more than eight hectares and are accessible only by the resort’s private boat.

Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi Celebrates Women’s Day
The Grand Dame of Vietnamese hospitality rolls out the red carpet each year for International Women’s Day, which will be celebrated this year on March 8. Metropole Hanoi’s Wonderland by Le Beaulieu, which serves fine French cuisine, is offering a special four-course set menu (VND 2.1 million), with an optional wine pairing (VND 3.5 million). At angelina cocktail bar, whisky lounge and New World restaurant, the exclusive Women’s Day set menu features a three-course meal and a special welcome cocktail (VND 2 million). And Le Club Bar, which overlooks the hotel’s beautiful garden courtyard, is offering two exclusive buffets: a lunch buffet (VND 2 million) and a dinner buffet (VND 2.2 million). For more information on these culinary opportunities, or to make a reservation, contact Metropole Hanoi’s food and beverage department at Tel: 024 3826 6919 ext. 8200

Melia Phuket Mai Khao’s Asian Night
The new Meliá Phuket Mai Khao, situated on eight acres of Phuket’s north-western coastline on the Andaman Sea, has introduced a delectable set dinner menu that pays homage to “the deep south of Siam”. Held every Tuesday night between 5pm-9pm at elegant all-day dining restaurant SASA, the resort’s Asian Night menu is priced at THB 699++ (USD 22) and features nine dishes served in tasting size portions. The menu starts with ‘Yaam Pak Kut Thalee’ poached fern with catch of the day medley seafood and ‘Thord Mun Hua Plee Moo Bod’ banana blossom and Kurobuta minced pork with sweet chili dip, followed by ‘Kai Tom Kamin’ free range chicken and turmeric aromatic soup. Highlights include ‘Moo Hong’ traditional Phuketian slow cooked pork belly in light soya sauce, cinnamon and star anise, ‘Kung Pad Sator’ wok sauteed king prawns with shrimp paste and jungle broad beans, ‘Pad Pak Miang’ wok sauteed miang leaves, organic scrambled egg and crispy shrimps, and ‘Pad Pak Ruam’ pan-seared organic veggies with oyster sauce. Asian Night is rounded out with desserts ‘Kao Niew Turian’ sweet sticky rice with stewed durian fruit in coconut syrup and pandan, and ‘Pollamai Ruam’ tropical fruit.

Dine & Unwind at Banyan Tree Samui
Between 6pm and 10pm every evening on the private beach fronting Banyan Tree Samui, visitors and guests can dine al fresco with the white sand between their feet and spectacular sunset views over the sapphire sea. The sumptuous 4-course Western or Thai set dinner includes a welcome drink, a bottle of Champagne or wine, and either the choice of a mixed herb for two (hotel guests only) or a 45-minute spa treatment for two. This luxurious romantic interlude costs just 7,900 THB (with wine) per couple or 8,900 THB with a 200ml bottle of Moet & Chandon Champagne.

Discover Asia’s Best Fine Dining Restaurants at

Tropical Forest Picnic in Krabi
Those who seek a little solace from nature would be hard beat to better the picnic offerings from Banyan Tree Krabi in southern Thailand. As part of a Forest Bathing activity, guests are invited to hike to Naga Crest Mountain in the national park directly behind the resort, where they can be at one with the tropical environment, including waterfalls, scenic vistas and wildlife spotting. The forest bathing picnic is free to all guests who book a minimum two-night stay (and includes a bottle of wine for those staying three nights or more). For reservations, call: 075-811-888


First published at – Global Travel News

International Visitor Arrival Numbers to Increase Across Asia Pacific in 2022

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International Visitor Arrival Numbers to Increase Across Asia Pacific in 2022

Bangkok, Thailand, February 17, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / Following on from the release of the Executive Summary at the end of last month, the PATA Asia Pacific Visitor Forecasts 2022-2024 Full Report released today by the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) predicts annual changes in international visitor arrivals (IVAs) across the region to turn positive versus 2021 IVAs under each of the mild, medium, and severe scenarios in 2022, with growth rates ranging between 126% and 84%.

The increase in the absolute number of international visitor arrivals is predicted therefore to range from 72.5 million to 175.7 million under the severe and mild scenarios respectively, lifting the total volume of visitor arrivals to between 159 million and 315 million, under those same scenarios respectively.

While it is a positive and welcome development after two years of extremely difficult conditions, the international travel and tourism sector of the Asia Pacific region still has much to repair and revitalise. The forecasted increases in inbound visitor numbers in 2022, for example, still only return them to 23-45% of the level of foreign arrivals received in pre-pandemic 2019.

Moving forward to 2024, IVA growth over the next three years is projected to be positive, with the volume of IVAs in 2024 being equal to, or better than that of 2019, under two of the three scenarios.

As noted by PATA CEO Liz Ortiguera, “Our latest forecast report numbers, based on data current as of November 2021 reviewed in conjunction with our recent research advisory panel updates provided on Jan 24, 2021 provide the definitive outlook for Asia Pacific visitor arrival forecasts. As noted by our panel, the effect of the Omicron variant is projected to have a small incremental impact for now with the key earlier assumptions still driving the forecast.”

“Equitable access and deployment of vaccines plus a practical risk-based approach to health and safety protocols in travel is foundational to not only the travel sector’s sustained recovery but to the overall global recovery from the pandemic. We share the World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) view that the pharmaceutical sector must address barriers to access and affordability for all destinations. Furthermore, as acknowledged by the WHO, travel bans will not prevent international spread. Instead, travel channels should remain open with clear, practical guidelines as recently shared by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and WHO.”

“Destinations across Asia Pacific have been highly focussed on implementing health and safety measures. In parallel, various research studies and early travel patterns indicate a heightened consumer interest in a pivot to the right side of travel – longer journeys, more authentic experiences, and nature-based, wellness-oriented, and socially-conscious travel offerings are amongst the key trends for today’s travellers.

Destinations can expedite their recovery by staying top-of-mind with consumers, communicating requirements with clarity and consistency, and offering a sustainable, healthy destination experience,” added Ms Ortiguera.

The PATA Asia Pacific Visitor Forecasts 2022-2024 Full Report is now available at

What you will learn from this report:

– International visitor arrival forecasts for Asia Pacific between 2022 and 2024 by destination region, sub-region, and destination, highlighting changing demand preferences in the face of policy changes.
– Forecasts for 39 individual destinations by scenario allowing for the development of better recovery strategies for the post-COVID-19.
– Forecasts of travel demand from key source regions into each of 39 individual Asia Pacific destinations by scenario and by quarter and year.

PATA International members have exclusive access to the recording of the “PATA Visitor Forecasts 2022 to 2024’ webinar which included expert speakers from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Euromonitor International, and TCI Research. The speakers provided an overview of the forecasts for international arrivals to Asia Pacific between 2020 and 2024 as well as insights and analysis on Asia Pacific travel-related sentiment and consumer trends.

About PATA
Founded in 1951, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is a not-for-profit membership association that acts as a catalyst for the responsible development of travel and tourism to, from and within the Asia Pacific region. The Association provides aligned advocacy, insightful research and innovative events to its member organisations, which including government, state and city tourism bodies; international airlines and airports; hospitality organisations, and educational institutions, as well as thousands of young tourism professional (YTP) members across the world. The PATA network also embraces the grassroots activism the PATA Chapters and Student Chapters, who organise numerous travel industry training programmes and business development events across the world. Thousands of travel professionals belong to the 32 local PATA Chapters worldwide, while hundreds of students are members of the 28 PATA Student Chapters globally. The PATAmPOWER platform delivers unrivalled data, forecasts and insights from the PATA Strategic Intelligence Centre to members’ desktops and mobile devices anywhere in the world. PATA’s Head Office has been in Bangkok since 1998. The Association also has official offices or representation in Beijing and London.

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First published at – Global Travel News

Amazing Tourism Transformation During Visit Thailand Year 2022

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Amazing Tourism Transformation During Visit Thailand Year 2022 - - TRAVELINDEXBangkok, Thailand, February 15, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / The Tourism Authority of Thailand is moving forward with its goal to revitalise and transform Thai tourism, with the ‘Visit Thailand Year 2022: Amazing New Chapters’ campaign, and formulating a DASH model to help revive the tourism sector and the Thai economy overall.

The Visit Thailand Year 2022: Amazing New Chapters campaign was initially introduced globally at the World Travel Market in London, in line with the country’s quarantine-free reopening to international travellers from 1 November, 2021.

Discover secondary destinations in amazing Thailand during the Visit Thailand Year 2022 – Amazing Chapters

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor, said, “With the Visit Thailand Year 2022: Amazing New Chapters, TAT envisions change towards stronger and sustainable, more responsible, more digital, and more inclusive tourism growth, by leveraging on Thailand’s 5F, 4M soft-power foundations, which are Food, Film, Fashion, Festival, Fight, Music, Museum, Master, And Meta. To achieve this, TAT has formulated a ‘DASH’ model to set the entire organisation towards the single goal of transforming the tourism sector.”

D – Domestic travel: The model places emphasis on both tourists and operators in the tourism industry;

A – Accelerate Demand: The model seeks to stimulate qualitative demand, build trust, and a good image by placing focus on tourists’ safety, targeting high-income segments, and delivering impressively different and valuable experiences;

S – Shape Supply: The model looks set to elevate the tourism ecosystem to quality and sustainability based on responsible tourism and digital tourism for all parties to benefit together, and resulting in sustainable income distribution to each sector;

H – Healing Thai Economy: The model focuses on helping to revive the Thai economy through tourism with the country’s reopening to ensure a fast recovery and strong, sustainable growth.

Mr. Yuthasak said, “With the DASH model in place, TAT is placing greater emphasis on domestic tourism. For international tourism, TAT is introducing a new ‘Amazing Thailand Workplace Paradise’ project, with the aim to make Thailand the World’s No. 1 Remote Workers Friendly Destination.”

The Amazing Thailand Workplace Paradise project will focus on remote workers from long-haul international markets, in response to a growing trend in light of the COVID-19 pandemic whereby people work remotely and enjoy a vacation.

For short-haul international markets, TAT will leverage on the TEST & GO entry scheme, highlighting ‘New Chapters, New Opportunity’ offerings. New segments will be targeted; such as; bleisure (business and leisure), students, digital nomads, and soft adventure. New areas will be set to attract quality segments from potential markets like Mongolia and South Korea (Busan), and to seek new partners in existing markets. New infrastructure will be promoted; such as, new transport routes – especially the high-speed rail linking Kunming and Lao PDR, which can connect to Thailand’s Nong Khai Province. New way will focus on inspiring millennials to experience Thailand in an environmentally-friendly and sustainable way.

Within the country, TAT will highlight a 3-Ex conceptExperience, Expectation, and Extraordinary – to inspire domestic travel with 3 ideas for tourism products and services; namely, Nature to Keep, Food to Explore, and Thainess to Discover with five colours representing the regions of Thailand.

Crimson for the Central Region – Chic Central; emerald for the Eastern Region – East at Ease; navy for the Northern Region – North Nostalgia; ivory for the Northeastern Region – Isan in Love, and silver for the Southern Region – Savoury South.

In line with the DASH model and tourism marketing strategies, TAT will place emphasis on creating innovative travel experiences for the targeted segments – workcation and staycation, wellness, sports, and responsible tourism. Aimed at both local and international tourists, there will be a plethora of tourism offerings designed in response to a growing trend, including astronomical tourism, water tourism, community tourism – highlighting a happy model for both the tourists and the communities, and culinary tourism – focusing on health and organic lifestyle.

Mr. Yuthasak said, “TAT will continue to communicate with both local and international tourists through the long-standing ‘Amazing Thailand’ branding. A dedicated campaign will be used for the local market to inspire domestic travel. For the international market, TAT will use the ‘Amazing New Chapters’ campaign to promote Thai cultural values, under the ‘from A to Z Amazing Thailand has it all’ concept to inspire travellers from around the world to once again visit Thailand.”

Discover secondary destinations in amazing Thailand during the Visit Thailand Year 2022 – Amazing Chapters

Last but not least, TAT will be elevating its innovation approach with a plan to introduce a TAT Amazing Influencer, using the virtual character technology to create a personalised experience in the Metaverse virtual world. TAT is also planning to promote Thai tourism through digital art with a TAT NFTs starting with local wisdom products. In addition, TAT will enhance marketing and digital knowledge by creating a hybrid work system allowing staff to work remotely effectively in line with the plan to promote Thailand as a remote workers friendly destination. To maintain TAT’s positioning as a high-performance organisation, emphasis will continue to be a place on the proper management of resources and waste both internally and externally.

With Thai tourism transformation under this year’s strategic plans, TAT expects to generate a total revenue of 1.28 trillion Baht with 656 billion Baht from the domestic market (160 million trips) and 625 billion Baht from the international market (10 million tourists). The average expenditure for domestic tourists is estimated at 4,100 Baht per person, and for foreign tourists at 62,580 Baht per person.

First published at

First published at – Global Travel News

Blue by Alain Ducasse at ICONSIAM Wins Prestigious Global Award

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Blue by Alain Ducasse at ICONSIAM Wins Prestigious Global Award - - TRAVELINDEX

Bangkok, February 10, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / Siam Piwat, the world’s leading retail property developer, owner and operator of world-class projects, and one of the joint owners of ICONSIAM, marked another milestone in Thailand’s retail history with Blue by Alain Ducasse, the Michelin-starred restaurant at ICONSIAM, winning the prestigious Le French Design 100 award. The awards that honor French designers for their work outside of France is another accolade on the list of international awards for Thailand, further bolstering its reputation on the global level.

Discover gastronomy destination ICONSIAM and Bangkok’s Best Fine Dining Restaurants at

– The award marks a spectacular success for ICONSIAM and Blue by Alain Ducasse, which has previously won one Michelin star for two consecutive years.
Le French Design 100 honors 100 international creations by French designers that earn France’s design industry global recognition.
– Siam Piwat has moved beyond local competition and won a world-class award on a global stage, reinforcing its leadership as the Visionary Icon and continuing to deliver experiences beyond expectation.

The award ceremony at France’s Presidential Palace was attended by the French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte Macron, Minister of Culture Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin, Hervé Lemoine, the head of the jury, and guest of honor Philippe Starck. At the ceremony, Jouin Manku, a leading French design agency, was honored with the Le French Design 100 award for its design for Blue By Alain Ducasse at ICONSIAM in Bangkok.

Ms. Chadatip Chutrakul, Chief Executive Officer of Siam Piwat Group and Director of ICONSIAM, said, “ICONSIAM is reinforcing its position as a destination where the best of Thailand and the best of the world converge, setting a new benchmark for the retail industry. We have made history and bolstered Thailand’s reputation by winning as many as 13 global awards across different categories. All of this is thanks to Siam Piwat’s vision and determination to inject creativity into every project and creating a perfect symphony of art, culture, and innovation through never-before-seen concepts and stories. In this endeavor, Siam Piwat has collaborated with world-renowned designers as well as Thailand’s leading designers and artists to set itself apart and consistently introduce new and extraordinary experiences to the industry.”

“We are beyond proud to have successfully earned Thailand global recognition for its real estate development capabilities. All of our projects, namely Siam Paragon, Siam Center, Siam Discovery, and ICONSIAM, have won numerous global awards over the years. Blue by Alain Ducasse is another business born out of our key philosophy to deliver ‘experiences beyond expectation’. Our intention was to invite one of the world’s best-known chefs to open a restaurant here in Thailand to deliver a first-ever experience and bolster Thailand’s position as one of the world’s top gastronomic destinations. That is why Blue by Alain Ducasse is exclusive to Thailand. We worked closely with Alain Ducasse and Jouin Manku, the French design agency that meticulously oversaw every detail of the interior design to bring the ultimate dining experience and a unique aesthetic to life.”

A vital element of ICONSIAM, Blue by Alain Ducasse is Thailand’s first-ever world-class contemporary French restaurant by legendary Alain Ducasse recognized with an astounding 21 Michelin stars. Prominently positioned on the coveted Chao Phraya riverfront with unparalleled panoramic views, the restaurant has since its opening in 2019 become a prime destination for epicures and gastronomes. Ever since, it has delivered world-class French cuisine using the finest ingredients and has been awarded one Michelin star for two consecutive years. Blue By Alain Ducasse also won the ‘Best of the Year Award’ in the fine dining category from Interior Design magazine, the most influential authority in the design industry worldwide.

The Le French Design 100 award for Blue by Alain Ducasse recognizes the spectacularly meticulous interior design of the restaurant. A design that perfectly complements the majestic vistas of the Chao Phraya River, and reflects a design philosophy that understands the importance of design and ambience for a complete dining experience. The team at Jouin Manku have designed several of Alain Ducasse’s Michelin-starred restaurants in various countries, each time with great success. In Bangkok, Jouin Manku conjured a uniquely captivating space that melds Thai and French influences into a unique space. Walnut wood and brass lamps, which draw inspiration from the intimate gardens – the bosquets – of the Palace of Versailles lend a warmth to the front lounge next to the entrance foyer. An awe-inspiring handmade pleated chandelier dominates the main dining area. With luxurious royal blue walls echoing the restaurant’s name and expansive floor-to-ceiling windows framing views of the river and city, Jouin Manku has created a magnificent stage for the contemporary French dishes and the superb wine list.

Le French Design 100 is the only design award in France that honors the international creations of French designers, and each year 100 objects and spatial design projects are selected for bringing global recognition to the French design industry. Launched in 2019, Le French Design 100 is supported by the French Ministry of Culture and sponsored by the illustrious designer Philippe Starck. The second edition was held in January 2022 under the patronage of the French President Emmanuel Macron.

Discover gastronomy destination ICONSIAM and Bangkok’s Best Fine Dining Restaurants at

The Le French Design 100 award that Jouin Manku has won for Blue by Alain Ducasse marks the first global accolade in 2022 for Siam Piwat and ICONSIAM and highlights their continued success in creating experiences beyond expectation. Over the years, ICONSIAM has garnered 13 global awards at various world-class competitions, including the Best Design of the Year at the World Retail Awards 2019 hosted by the World Retail Congress, the first prize in the Best Shopping Center category at the MAPIC Awards 2019 in Cannes, France, the 2020 VIVA Best-of-the-Best Design and Development Award, and being ranked in the top four in the Best Shopping Center Category at the MIPIM Awards 2021.

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First published at – Global Travel News

Thailand Yacht Show to Be Staged in Gulf of Thailand

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Thailand Yacht Show to Be Staged in Gulf of Thailand - TOP25 YACHTS - TRAVELINDEX

Pattaya, Thailand, February 8, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / The first part of the 6th edition of the government-initiated Thailand Yacht Show will be staged in the Gulf of Thailand, with the second part to follow in Phuket later in the year

TYS 2022 will be the first boat show to take place in Asia for over two years – a welcome event indeed, something that the whole industry has been eagerly looking forward to.

Sales of yachts and boats have skyrocketed in Asia during the pandemic, and Thailand is no exception, with the local market having at last woken up to the pleasure – and safety – of the boating lifestyle. People from Bangkok and other major cities have flocking to the easily accessible waters and islands around Pattaya in record numbers, and Thai dealers and distributors of the world’s best-known boating brands, as well as steadily increasing number of local boat builders, suppliers, and service companies, want to capitalize on this new market on the Eastern Seabord and the Thai Riviera.

The long-awaited 6th edition, postponed from January 2021, and all future annual editions, will take place in two venues at different times of the season. The Gulf of Thailand event in Pattaya will focus mainly on production yachts, with as many superyachts as are available in the area.

The Phuket event, which will take place in December at the beginning of the next high season, will similarly cover the whole industry, but will have a major focus on the fleet of foreign-owned superyachts that are expected to arrive from November to spend the winter chartering in Thailand in future – thanks to the new superyacht charter license.

The two shows between them will attract thousands of newly-interested boat buyers from Bangkok, and yacht charterers from all over the world when the pandemic finally passes, as well as the hundreds of businesses that make up the leisure boating industry community in Thailand and the region.

Since 2016, the Thailand Yacht Show has provided a professional platform for the world’s major boating brands, brokers, dealers, suppliers, and leisure marine service providers, as well as the luxury lifestyle products that complement the yachting world and the people who frequent it. Industry leaders can meet plenty of new buyers from the newly interested but so far uninitiated affluent lifestyle-seekers, and at the same time expand their business network in South East Asia.

The 2022 Pattaya edition is already showing all the signs of seeing significant numbers of qualified visitors coming for the weekend, particularly from Bangkok (who, by and large, haven’t wanted to travel to the various boat shows in Phuket in the past). Special features will include the re-furbished Ocean Marina Yacht Club, a diving exhibition, live sailing and boating experiences plus sea trials on high-quality charter yachts.

For brand visibility and credibility, exhibiting at the Thailand Yacht Show affords you and your business a unique opportunity. Whether you are looking to establish your presence in the region or expand your business in this rapidly-developing new market, TYS provides a powerful platform for meeting new customers, reaching out to your existing clientele, and helping you to build a more established and prominent business.

As well as the exceptional line-up of yachts – 22 have already been booked in and we are expecting over 50 – there will be many famous luxury products on display, as well as an extensive programme of family-friendly activities spanning the entire weekend. Visitors and exhibitors alike can look forward to live music, entertainment, a variety of water sports, helicopter rides, and diving instruction. We will be presenting new exhibitors and partners each week from now on, along with some important announcements about the development of the industry here.

The two-show format will make the Thailand Yacht Show bigger, more representative of the whole of the industry, and far more easily accessible to visitors from all over Thailand, as well as to exhibitors from all parts of the industry. Thailand is the natural destination for the Asian Yachting Lifestyle Community, and TYS is the long-term marketing platform for the region’s yachting industry. We invite you to be part of it.

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First published at – Global Travel News