HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]: 

Resort complex to be built for long stay guests

Lufthansa forecasts greater opportunities for Thai aviation

Air New Zealand voted ‘Best Pacific Airline’ 5th consecutive year

Songkhla zoo to offer ‘night safari tour’ for visitors

Fly to Hong Kong and return with Cathay Pacific to earn double Asia Miles

New director of marketing communications for Hard Rock Hotel Pattaya

Thailand Golf Holiday

Resort complex to be built for long stay guests

Thailand and Japan will join hands to build a resort complex on 1,500 rai of land in the famous northern province of Chiang Mai to serve overseas long stay guests. The project is part of a government policy to encourage long-stay tourism, particularly in the senior citizen and retiree markets.

Chalermsak Suranant, director of Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Northern Office Region 1 said that foreign tourists between the ages of 45-50 are the target of the TAT long-stay tourism project.

A survey showed that European and Japanese travelers chose northern Thailand as their destination due to the landscape, fine service, low cost of living, diversity of food, and various recreation activities. They normally stay about a month.

Japanese tourists in particular prefer to travel with groups and want to stay near hospitals, shopping centers, Japanese restaurants, and golf courses, making Chiang Mai an ideal province for the project.

Director Chalermsak said, “There is only one weak point that should be addressed. We have a lack of Japanese speaking personnel. Therefore we will arrange for more training in Japanese language skills.”

Sauwalak Chimada, vice president of the Chiang Mai Chamber of Commerce and managing director of Sarika Tour said that her company and five Japanese tour agencies had formed a joint venture to build an accommodation and leisure complex worth two billion baht on 1,400 rai of land on Hangdong-Samueng Road.

Sauwalk said, “The new resort complex for ‘well-off pensioners’ will be comprised of a hospital, condominium, lodges, indoor and outdoor sport facilities, golf course, school, and spa. Japanese speaking staff will be familiar with Japanese people and their standards will be available to provide the best service for guests.”

The architecture will be northern Lanna-style and will be surrounded by cascading streams and mountains. Suawalk said this is more appealing to Japanese than are seaside resorts.

Construction will completed in the next 2 years and the company will launch a web-site to promote sales in overseas markets. (TNA)

Lufthansa forecasts greater opportunities for Thai aviation

Wolfgang Mayrhuber, deputy chairman of Deutsche Lufthansa AG, and CEO of Lufthansa German Airline passenger airline division, paid a recent courtesy call to Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, as part of his official visit to Thailand.

Mayrhuber, who is responsible for Deutsche Lufthansa AG’s biggest business operation, exchanged views and visions on bilateral and international air transportation with the Prime Minister, stressing the airline’s confidence in positive outlook in the Thai aviation industry and potential growth in the region.

A founding member of the Star Alliance group together with Thai Airways International Public Company limited (THAI) Lufthansa is the number one European airline in Asia Pacific. It offers 113 weekly frequencies to/from Asia via gateways in nine countries.

“Thailand is an important gateway to Asia and a popular destination for hundreds of thousands German tourists,” said Mayrhuber. “We will continue to capitalize on this opportunity and strengthen Star Alliance’s seamless network to benefit passengers, trade and commerce in Asia.”

Germany is the kingdom’s number one European trading partner. Lufthansa’s average number of filled passenger seats between Bangkok and Frankfurt is as high as 90%. The airline’s profit in the first half of 2002 has tripled to EURO 332 million compared to the same period last year.

The Lufthansa executive team also visited Dr. Srisook Chandrangsu, permanent secretary of the Ministry of Transport and Communications, and Thanong Bidaya, THAI’s chairman.

Air New Zealand voted ‘Best Pacific Airline’ 5th consecutive year

For the fifth consecutive year, Air New Zealand was voted ‘Best Pacific Airline’ at the TTG Travel Awards 2002 recently held in Bangkok. Since 1998, Air New Zealand has beaten other Pacific-based carriers to clinch this coveted title year after year.

Inaugurated in 1989, the TTG Annual Awards, now in its 14th year has gained the distinction of becoming the most influential awards ceremony in Asia’s travel industry.

This year, a total of 50 awards were presented in various categories including airlines, hotels, car rental, airports, cruise operators, theme attractions and more.

Voting is done through open nomination by over 16,000 readers of TTG Asia and 11,000 readers of TTG China who span the entire spectrum of the travel industry in Asia.

Through their votes, Asia’s travel trade industry acknowledges Air New Zealand as the most outstanding Pacific-based carrier operating Asia-Pacific routes with the best services, network and schedules.

It also recognises Air New Zealand as the most agent-friendly in terms of reservations, confirmations and commission payments as well as having the most professional sales and marketing team in terms of innovative ideas, incentive programs and servicing.

Ng Nai Shon, manager - South East Asia for Air New Zealand, “Year after year since 1998, our contemporaries in the travel industry have voted Air New Zealand the ‘Best Pacific Airline’. It is truly heartening to know that we have earned and retained the respect and recognition of our peers in what is deemed a highly competitive industry.”

“The Air New Zealand brand has become synonymous with consistently high service standards both on the ground and in the air and we take pride in our vibrant Pacific culture. Our strong Kiwi character and ‘can do’ attitude has served us well and we will continue to strive for fresh ideas and better ways of delivering the style of service that our customers really want.”

In September Air New Zealand was ranked fifth in the Best Leisure Airline - Long Haul category by readers of UK Conde Nast Traveller magazine in London. It also topped an independent customer survey by Skytrax Research, UK as having the ‘Best Cabin Crew’ in the Pacific Region and Australia.

Songkhla zoo to offer ‘night safari tour’ for visitors

Songkhla Zoo in the southern province of Songkhla will offer a night safari tour for visitors who want to experience an exciting way to see animals in their habitat at night.

Banyad Insuwan, the Songkhla zoo director disclosed that the night zoo project is now under construction. The zoo is building the new home similar to the habitat of animals in their natural settings and will install spot lights at selected locations.

“When the 100-rai night safari is finished, visitors can witness animals’ nocturnal activities. They can observe them roaming and hunting as they would in the wild,” said Banyad.

The director said presently the zoo’s visitors are people who live in the area and people from the neighboring provinces of Yala, Pattani, Satun and Narathiwat. The night safari is being built to attract a greater number of visitors, both foreign and Thai.

“To draw more tourists, we have to create a selling point and thoroughly publicize the night safari. Nighttime visits are an alternative program,” Banyad said. (TNA)

Fly to Hong Kong and return with Cathay Pacific to earn double Asia Miles

Cathay Pacific Airways offers double Asia Miles bonus to its Asia Miles members based in Thailand who fly to Hong Kong and return by CX708 and CX709 from now until November 30, 2002.

Yongyut Lujintanon, sales and marketing manager Thailand and Myanmar, Cathay Pacific Airways said, “As the result of the resumption of CX708 and CX709 to the schedule in September, there are 35 Cathay Pacific flights per week which provide more flexibility and convenience to passengers. Particularly CX708, departing from Bangkok at 09.45 a.m., and CX709, returning from Hong Kong at 22.05 p.m., provide our passengers more easy time for business or leisure in Hong Kong. In addition, Asia Miles members who travel with these 2 flights will simply get double Asia Miles.”

The promotion is available in all classes of round trip travel for Bangkok to Hong Kong, except group tour tickets and valid for Asia Miles members who are residents in Thailand only. Asia Miles members are eligible to earn double Asia Miles from now until November 30, 2002.

Non -Asia Miles member can apply for membership at or contact Cathay Pacific Airways at 0 2263 0606.

New director of marketing communications for Hard Rock Hotel Pattaya

Andrew Khoo, general manager of the Hard Rock Hotel Pattaya, recently appointed Wannapa Rakkeo director of marketing communications for the hotel.

Wannapa Rakkeo

Wannapa holds a bachelor’s degree from the faculty of humanities, Chiang Mai University.

After her graduation, she served as an editorial assistant for the ‘Manager’, an English language magazine and later joined Cathay Pacific as a flight attendant, based in Hong Kong. She also spent three years in New Delhi, India, where her father was the Naval Attach้ to the Royal Thai Embassy.

Wannapa returned to Thailand and embarked on a career in public relations, starting with the Montien group of hotels. Her career moves included a stint with the President Park Group, The Waste Management Co. Ltd and prior to joining the Hard Rock Hotel Pattaya she was group director of public relations for the Marriott Resort & Spa (Thailand).

Her crowning achievement prior to her departure has been helping the Bangkok Marriott Resort & Spa win the Award of Outstanding Performance, City Hotel category, in Bangkok, as part of the Thailand Tourism Awards 2002.


The Horseshoe Point