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Phuket Property Watch – Beach Club bingo

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Phuket Property Watch – Beach Club bingo | The Thaiger

PHUKET: For globetrotting party-goers the line up of posh beach clubs has led them for years from Ibiza, to Miami’s Nikki Beach and down to the Caribbean for sundowners on St. Barts.

Asia’s beach club evolution kicked off with the iconic Ku De Ta, and has now shifted into top gear with Cocoon, Potato Head and the Rock Bar at the luxurious Ayana Resort. A recent visit to the latter hallowed spot came complete with a night-club-like-queue that hit three digits.

Here in Phuket, Twinpalms’ Catch was an innovator along with Baba at Sri Panwa, which continues to draw a “hi-so” crowd from Bangkok and abroad with star- studded events.

One new project that has caught my eye is the pairing of the Angsana Resort (formerly Sheraton Grande Laguna) with Attica entertainment from Singapore. The two are teaming up on the Xana Beach Club in the center of popular Bang Tao beach. Construction is underway and an April opening is on the cards.

Attica is best known for their popular outlet in trendy Clark Quay, which is under the same moniker and specializes in buzzy events.

Looking at plans for the project, some of the cool hardware includes an Olympic sized swimming pool and thirty meter swim up bar. Double sun loungers are also a feature, but the “killer apps” are the cabanas, which hold up to 14 people and are equipped with service callers for when you simply can’t make it up from the day bed to order another round of drinks for your new best friends.

A special party boat will ply the Laguna Phuket lagoons with onboard drinks. The ultimate destination for the boat will be a view of the west coast sunset and yes, there cocktails and food will follow.

Eating options are highlighted with an Australian fusion menu, barbecue, seafood and for the healthy few a raw foods option.

Mission possible for the group is creating the big vibe of Ibiza, with imported DJs from Europe and some type of secret nightly show. We have no idea what it is, so well have to wait just over three months to find out.

On an island gone into convulsions with massive amounts of visitors quenching their lips with those tasty cocktail, beach club mania is set to dominate the next year or sos storyline.

Another recent Bang Tao opening was Bliss Beach Club. Early reports are that the build-out and fit is done nicely and the food is getting a thumbs up too. Drinking, dining, lounging, yes and the inevitable setting of the sun are drawing interest.

In the South, Re Ka Ta at the Boathouse rolled out just in time for the King’s Cup. Designed by Bali-based Fredo Taffin, who incidentally worked on Bali’s Ku De Ta, the Re Ka Ta, with new management and ownership of the hotel and outlets from the group behind Trisara, is gaining followers already.

Turning the table up North, Malaiwana unveiled “Up” on December 17th with an imported chef and a concept that was kept hush-hush. Located on the glamorous Nai Thon Golden Mile, expect this to draw an upscale crowd.

There remains a number of excellent and established beach spots from the casually hip Reggae Bay on Bang Tao and Siam Blue, to Kalim’s IndoChine and of course, sunset watching does not get any better than at Joe’s Downstairs.

There will be more to come, and 2012 will likely be The Year Of The Beach Club.

Writing this, my toes can almost feel the waves lapping with a warm gentle swell and where is my mojito, time to head to the beach it seems.

Bill Barnett is Managing Director of C9 Hotelworks and can be contacted through W: c9hotelworks.com.

— Bill Barnett



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Koh Samui

Raid on 18 foreign-owned Koh Samui hotels, owners arrested

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Raid on 18 foreign-owned Koh Samui hotels, owners arrested | The Thaiger

FILE PHOTO

Army, police and municipal officials have raided 18 hotels on Koh Samui claiming that they are illegally owned by foreigners. The hotels in questions are on a mountainside on the Gulf island, the second largest island in Thailand.

Officials carried out the search and raids on Chaweng Noi Mountain in Moo 6 village in Tambon Bophut  and found that 18 luxury mansions had been modified as hotels to cater to foreign tourists.

None of the 18 hotels were licensed and all are co-owned by businessmen from several countries, according to officials, including the UK, Germany, France, Russia, Belgium, Israel and Austria. Officials said the foreigners used Thais as nominees by stating their names as co-owners.

The inspection was carried out following complaints from licensed hotels that they had seen a large decrease in patrons after the new hotels began operating. Hoteliers said the new hotels had an unfair advantage because they were not paying the same taxes, or operating under the sale rules, as the licensed hotels.

Officials found the 18 hotels had proper land deeds but had not been registered as hotels.

Bophut police station took legal action against foreign executives of the four companies that were operating four of the 18 hotels. They have been charged with operating without a hotel license and working in a business – food and beverage – that is reserved for Thais.

Police said they will summon executives of the remaining 14 hotels to face charges. The executives are all living abroad.

SOURCE: The Nation

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Bangkok

Bangkok luxury poised to push through the US$300 ceiling

Bill Barnett

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Bangkok luxury poised to push through the US$300 ceiling | The Thaiger

by Bill Barnett of c9hotelworks.com

PHOTOS: Rosewood Bangkok

For hotel owners and managers in South East Asia, one of the great mysteries of the past ten years has been the low rate profile of Bangkok’s luxury hotel set. Despite soaring and sustained tourism growth, rising airlift and a strong economy, rates at Bangkok’s top tier properties have remained fairly stagnant.

Have we reached the tipping point?

I had had the opportunity to visit the latest entry to the Bangkok luxury class a few days ago, the Rosewood. With 159 keys which includes a limited number of posh houses with private pools and terraces the property is seeing an exceptional response and already achieving high rates.

What’s impressive about the entry is a take on the design approach that sees hotel developers apply a non-uniform approach with AvroKO coming in to focus on the restaurants and bars, while the rooms and public areas were led by Celia Chu Design and Associates.

While the speakeasy Lennon’s has not be opened yet, the 6,000 record vinyl collection is impressive and the bar will clearly have a strong pull. Taking the approach to designing restaurants and not typical hotel outlets, the Chinese eatery Nan Bei is a breath of fresh air and limited seating provides a bespoke appeal.

Taking a step back, and looking at recent entries like the Waldorf Astoria, and upcoming 101 key Capella, what is clear is luxury properties are shifting in terms of key drivers of the segment of art, fashion, residential vibe, bar and restaurant offerings, wellness and events.

So, what about rates?

On a broad basis Bangkok’s top tier hotels have averaged rates of US$200-240 for the past few years. This set has seen longer serving properties such as the St. Regis, Kempinski, and Okura effectively flatline on rates, though newer entries have come up including the Park Hyatt. On the broader horizon is the return of the Four Seasons and Capella by the river and the Orient Express at the MahaNakhon skyscraper.

With the entry of Rosewood driving rates, my expectation is that a few of the set will follow and at the end of 2019 we will set limited number of hotels crash through the US$300 average room rate barrier and effectively smash the legacy glass ceiling of Bangkok’s luxury hotels.

As in any business there will be winners and losers. Smaller hotels with some rate leading premium key types will be able to push up average daily rates. Segmentation is another key and hotels on the river that lack substantial corporate numbers will remain challenged until transport links to the area improve.

Where in the world are Bangkok luxury hotels heading?

To sum up 2019, size and location matter, the shift on food and beverage and social events along with niches like wellness and  smaller meetings/weddings are the key to the future. As for the quantum leap in rates, it’s about time Bangkok hoteliers be confident and push rates towards a more global norm.

Bangkok luxury poised to push through the US$300 ceiling | News by The Thaiger

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Phuket

Reservations now open for ‘Twinpalms MontAzure’ with enticing promotions

The Thaiger

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Reservations now open for ‘Twinpalms MontAzure’ with enticing promotions | The Thaiger

Celebrate the grand opening of Phuket’s newest beachside hotel by booking now to snap up fantastic deals. Twinpalms MontAzure in Kamala is offering irresistible packages ideal for both short and long-haul getaways for those who book directly from their website.

Guests may choose to enjoy three nights and pay for just two and for those who are looking to book a longer holiday, stay for six nights and pay only three on all Penthouses and Suite types. Guests may book from now until November 30, 2019, for stays from July 1 to 19 December 2019.

The latest addition to the Twinpalms Hotels & Resorts portfolio is set directly on Kamala Beach, on Phuket’s popular west coast and will welcome its first guests in July 2019. A member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World, the boutique beach hotel offers beautifully appointed Penthouses and Private Pool Suites and a collection of stunning Suites.

Suites range in size from 70m2 to splendid Penthouses with private pools and sea views boasting large living spaces of up to 300m2. Guests will also enjoy using a lap pool or an infinity pool offering views of the Andaman sea.

Adding to the collection of fantastic places to be on Phuket, Twinpalms MontAzure will launch its beachside restaurant and lounge, ‘Shimmer’, with uninterrupted sea views. Shimmer restaurant will serve vibrant and tasty food with an Asian focus, delicious and creative cocktails, and a great wine list, all served with the customary gusto and flair expected from the Twinpalms brand.

Designed by Martin Palleros, following the original Twinpalms concept and style, of utilising Phuket’s beautiful landscape, Martin has allowed the design to maximise the sea views from most of the Suites and areas within the buildings, whilst also ensuring the preservation of the views of the mountainside from other perspectives.

Guests of Twinpalms MontAzure also have access by complimentary transport to the brand’s other dining and entertainment destinations, taking full advantage of the three beautiful beaches Twinpalms has a presence on.

HQ Beach Lounge, a few steps away on Kamala Beach, Catch Beach Club, Catch Junior and Palm Seaside, located on Bang Tao Beach and of course, the flagship resort, Twinpalms Phuket is just a few steps from Surin Beach.

Reservations now open for ‘Twinpalms MontAzure’ with enticing promotions | News by The Thaiger Reservations now open for ‘Twinpalms MontAzure’ with enticing promotions | News by The Thaiger

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