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The Early Learning Centre, Bangkok

Water, water everywhere…

Water…three atoms bonded together, continuously moving through their cycle. Can we capture some of it during its journey, play with it and learn from it? We can’t taste it, we can’t smell it, most of our planet is covered with it and life can’t exist without it, yet we seldom think about it, except perhaps during the rainy season when it becomes a nuisance. There must be something going on that doesn’t meet the eye. We set out to take a closer look, but where to start?

We chose the garden, and when the wonderment on the faces of the children confirmed that we were in the right place, we made it our Atelier of Water. So much depends upon a puddle, that brief visit of our three atoms to the school that inspired the children to begin sketching and painting. Back inside, we looked at images of waterfalls, rivers and oceans, and concepts like transparency, pressure and energy became understandable, strength and power comprehensible.

The children then listened to water sounds and began to recognise patterns, make connections, and create a graphic ‘alphabet of sounds’ which when strung together created striking compositions. We were ready to venture beyond the atelier to the pool to capture the splash and crash of the waves that was caused by yet another phenomenon we couldn’t see. Through body movements, images, colours, and much animated discussion, everyone began to understand the fundamental concept of energy transformation and in turn all natural phenomena. The floodgates had burst, and the cascade of ideas, inspiration, illumination and collaboration became unstoppable.

Chivaroma.com

Welcome to Chivaroma

With our roots deep in the north of Thailand, Chivaroma was born out of a culture that has always had an intimate relationship with its surroundings.

It was only natural that our quest for health and wellness brought us to the trees, bushes, flowers and shrubs from which we extracted the precious botanical oils that healed us, cleansed us, nourished and soothed us.

We soon found that, while taking care of our outsides went a long way toward enhancing our appearance, it was the added benefits of aromatherapy from these plants’ essential oils that allowed our inner beauty to shine.

Each of our Chivaroma Tropical Essences is more than a product – it is a process, one that begins on the skin and reaches deep within where true beauty lies, gently drawing it to the surface.

Once you experience it, you will understand what we mean by “Chivaroma – The Fragrant Life”.

Spice Roads

Take it slow, take it easy, and take it in.

Let the others whiz by in their fortified vehicles: they’re probably not that interested in the ancient inscription on that rock anyway, or the mischievous spider monkey on the steps of the temple, or the weathered old rice farmer fanning his face with that frazzled palm-leaf hat. Travel is about the moments – moments that are exposed forever on the sensitive emulsion sheet of the mind and that happen only when we become a part of the place. What we have discovered in cycling most of the known world is not so much the grandeur that is outside us, but the empathy that is inside us, that sense of connectedness that comes when we stop being a spectator and start being a participant.

Sky Bar, The Dome at lebua

Sky Bar: High Society Redefined

This time we really have raised the bar – 63 floors up at The Dome, making Sky Bar not just the coolest bar in Bangkok, but at 820 feet in the air the highest bar of its kind in the world. Here, entrancing 270° cityscapes and riverviews vie for your attention, and people-watching reaches a whole new level as tycoons and celebs rub shoulders with columnists and code warriors.

Then there are the drinks, and when it comes to exceptionally innovative cocktails impeccably presented by one of Bangkok’s most celebrated mixologists, the sky’s the limit – from the signature Mai Tai to the indulgent quadruple-distilled New Zealand vodka and all the most luxurious beers, wines and spirits in-between.

Ever since it opened, this has been the venue of choice for those who are perfectly at-home in the glittering post-modern multi-hued place that exists in the slipstream between neon and sky – a place far beyond your corner cocktail lounge.

Blog, Café Mozu, The Dome at lebua

TWISTED CLASSICS COCKTAILS, ONLY AT CAFÉ MOZU

The latest groundbreaking cocktail series is unveiled at the celebrated poolside Café Mozu. “This time,” says Ron Ramirez, lebua’s master mixologist, we’ve taken a futuristic approach to five legendary classics, maintaining their traditional flavor but adding love, care and a passion for detail combined with exquisite delivery to create finely crafted futuristic masterpieces that redefine luxurious poolside bar service.

Liquid Martini – Originally the Classic Martini

It takes a certain chutzpah to experiment with the cocktail HL Mencken called “the only American invention as perfect as the sonnet”. At 0.9˚ our version is served at the temperature of liquid nitrogen, making it the coldest martini on the planet in liquid form, whether vodka or gin, stirred or shaken, with an olive or a twist.

Nitropolitan – Originally the Cosmopolitan

Ron’s take on the Metropolitan, itself a variation of the Cosmopolitan martini, with Absolut 100, Cointreau, cranberry juice, orange liqueur and a lemon splash, shaken and poured over a tea bag of dry ice and orange peel, and garnished with cotton candy if desired.

My-Thai – Originally the Mai Tai

Like Trader Vic who travelled the world in search of flavors and spices, our mixologist traveled the world and found his in Thailand, then transformed the Mai Tai invented by Vic in 1933 into what could well become the Thai national drink. White and dark rum, dry orange liqueur, fresh Thai basil leaves, kefir lime leaves and syrup, orgeat syrup, lime and pineapple juice – pressed, churned and shaken.

Red Velvet Caipirinha – Originally the Caipirinha

Our version of Brazil's national cocktail, which takes its name from the word caipira, (someone from the countryside), is made with overripe orange muddled with Brazilian cachaça, a splash of Thai lime, crushed, muddled, churned and topped with Shiraz red wine.

Black Clover Club – Originally the Clover Club

The original Clover Club cocktail, named after the Philadelphia men's club at which captains of industry met in the Bellevue-Stratford hotel, dates back to at least 1910. A century later, Ron replaced the traditional fresh raspberries with blackberries, then added London dry gin, Creme De Mure liqueur, lemon juice, pasteurized egg white and pineapple nectar – dry and shock shaken and frosted with pineapple.

Appropriately enough, these redefined classics are only served at Café Mozu, where all-day indoor and outdoor dining has been redefined as well, from the legendary breakfast buffet, to the authentic Middle Eastern and Indian, Thai, wok-fried Chinese, traditional Japanese, classic American deli, wood-fired pizzas, and pastries of the finest French flour.

Forget everything you know about drinking and dining and redefine your day at Café Mozu.

Blog, Wordman

GETTING FROM A TO B TO C

An American in Bangkok Copywriting

Sometimes the light's all shinin' on me;

Other times, I can barely see.

Lately it occurs to me ...

What a long, strange trip it's been.

   -Truckin’

Nothing of any particular note happened in the first 14 years of my life: after stints in Manhattan’s Hell’s Kitchen and Rego Park, the family moved to Westport when I was 8. Dad, who was born poor in Brooklyn, had received a scholarship to Pratt after which he began working at places like Gray Advertising and Vogue magazine. Ten minutes of any episode of Madmen will provide a pretty accurate snapshot of our lives, complete with booze, breakdowns and – worst of all – boredom.

I was never much good a handling booze, and even worse with boredom, so at 14 I moved in with Grandma and Grandpa in Brooklyn, all wide-eyed and unsupervised, and did what any normal kid my age would do in 1965: I began reading.

I’ve never mentioned any of this before to anyone in my life, but it was in the coffee houses of Bleecker Street and on the benches of Washington Square that my love affair with the language began. I can still recite some of the more moving passages from Dylan Thomas and James Joyce today, 45 years later.

It was around this time that another lad came to the city who was also quite enamored of words and apparently Dylan Thomas too – so much so that he even changed his name to Dylan. Folk music and literature kept me buzzed, and though I flirted with the dark side through Ginsberg and Kerouac and Genet, I didn’t go there for several years.

Anyone who’s read this far is probably wondering why I’m telling you this. Well, it’s because the only advice I can ever think of giving an aspiring copywriter or editor is that they start reading great literature in their formative years. If it’s too late it’s too late. College ain’t gonna do it, ‘how to make money copywriting from home’ videos ain’t gonna do it, and the fact that nobody around you can speak English ain’t gonna do it. It also helps if you never grow up, because then you see everything with fresh eyes.

After high school, where I read a book a day for four years, it was on to NYU and thence headlong into New York’s publishing world, where I broke into the publishing biz by writing blurbs for paperbacks. Since then I’ve worked in books, magazines, newspapers, typesetting, corporate communications and anything else that required words. But New York was getting boring. The last time I felt like this I’d run off to Maui and lived in my tent for a year; this time, however, I lived in an actual apartment and studied linguistics with the legendary Dr Richard Wood who had similarly dropped out and settled in Hawaii teaching at UH Hilo until his death a couple of years ago.

Alas, boredom set in, and the 300 inches of rain a year were putting a cloud over my trip. Years earlier in the Greenwich Village coffeehouse days, I’d ventured farther south to Chinatown and walked and walked, mesmerized by the frenzy around me. I was already halfway to Asia, so why not just keep going? That mystical place known as the ‘Land of Smiles’ sounded good, particularly after Hawaii, which was not known for its fondness of haoles.

That was 20 years, half a dozen magazines, and countless ads, brochures, annual reports, corporate profiles, newsletters, press releases, websites and video scripts ago. I have my own little one-man copywriting and editorial shop now, and I’m happy to report that it’s never boring.

Devi Garh by lebua, Udaipur

Situated in a former hilltop palace that has been transformed into a sophisticated romantic retreat, Devi Garh by lebua affords guests the opportunity to experience 18th century royal life with 21st century comforts. While the exterior has been restored to its past splendor, the interiors showcase chic contemporary Indian design highlighted by local marble and semi-precious stones, and the 39 grand and luxurious suites offer amenities the palace’s former inhabitants could only dream of.

Blog, Tower Club at lebua

Living the Hollywood Life: Exceptional Excess

Tower Club at lebua’s Hangover Suite is one of a kind, and the perfect place to live the Hollywood dream.

The first impression many receive upon arriving at Tower Club at lebua is the understated entrance, which is reminiscent of the secret passages used by celebs to avoid the paparazzi. “We try to offer privacy to our guests”, the doorman explains. Once inside, however, nothing is understated, particularly as guests are whisked up to the legendary three-bedroom Hangover Suite for in-room check-in.

Tower Club’s top-of-the-line suite was renamed the Hangover Suite after it was taken over by the cast of The Hangover Part II while they were filming at the hotel – which was thrust into the spotlight when the highly anticipated movie arrived on movie screens in 2011 with aerial views that were all shot from the impressive heights of The Dome’s Sirocco restaurant.

Located on the 56th floor and part of the hotel's all-suite Tower Club, the Hangover Suite is made up of a master bedroom, one double and one smaller double, a fully equipped kitchenette, a dining area, a lounge, four balconies, walk-in wardrobes, and exclusive access to the Tower Club lounge on the 52nd floor with its continental breakfast, all-day canapés, light luncheons, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and afternoon high tea. Complimentary Hangovertinis and a fully stocked mini-bar are also part of the Hangover Suite experience.

The kitchenette, complete with breakfast bar and serving hatch, is just the place for one of The Dome’s chefs to rustle up a five-star snack if guests opt for in-room dining. The lounge area, complete with wide-screen TV and surround-sound can create a sophisticated ambiance, or simply rock, and the extra guest washroom can be useful with all the imbibing going on. All in all, the expansive space and breathtaking views makes it the perfect venue for a cocktail or dinner party.

If there is one thing that can get guests to leave the suite it’s The Dome, Bangkok’s most coveted – and certainly highest – dining and drinking destination with the famed Sky Bar and Sirocco, the inviting Distil lounge, the celebrated Asian restaurant Breeze, and Mezzaluna, the award-wining fine-dining mecca renowned for its innovative cuisine. A few floors down, Bangkok’s famous breakfast is served at the poolside Café Mozu for those who desire more than a Hangovertini.

The Hangovertini, which has gone on to become Bangkok’s signature cocktail and is still served at Sky Bar, is the most famous of mixologist Ron Ramirez’ Art Cocktails, which are also known as the Seven Wonders as the collection comes in a range of distinctive flavors designed to appeal to everyone’s palate. The seven base spirits of vodka, whiskey, grappa, rum, tequila, gin and cognac, are carefully crafted utilizing seven equally distinctive methods – shaken, muddled, smoked, foamed, macerated, built and stirred. Excessive? Perhaps. Exceptional? Definitely.

Asian Property Markets

Pattaya – The Beach Resort Superstar

Welcome to the new Pattaya – a beach resort with city status that has redefined itself to become Thailand’s premier seaside getaway and one of the world’s most popular beach destinations. Eminently accessible, Pattaya property is being driven by the city’s location a mere hour and a half drive from Bangkok, 60 minutes from Suvarnabhumi International Airport, and just 45 minutes from the Eastern Seaboard and U-Tapao International Airport with its planned expansion into an international transport center – and the coming high-speed road and rail links will make the trip even shorter. The boom in Pattaya property is being driven by a combination of factors, among them:

  • The city attracts six million visitors every year, and the tourist profile has become far more prosperous than it had been in the past, with many eager to rent your property in Pattaya. The city has dedicated itself to satisfying this steadily growing number of visitors who represent exceptional rental opportunities to Pattaya property investors with rental yields currently at 8-12% per annum.
  • Property investment in Pattaya is being supported with upgraded infrastructure, international schools, world-class hospitals, more than 20 renowned golf courses and exciting nightlife that are are pulling in an additional two million weekend visitors every year from Bangkok along with the holidaymakers from around the world and legions of Pattaya property investors.
  • The fact that found that Pattaya is situated in the heart of the Eastern Seaboard – Thailand’s fastest-growing regional economy – is just one more reason that astute investors in the Pattaya property market are realizing significant capital gains and rental returns from their property in Pattaya.


Whether you’re an investor, retiree, business person, or someone looking at property for sale in Pattaya for a second home in a fashionable tropical resort, we’ve got many more reasons why a property investment in Pattaya offers a tremendous opportunity to realise substantial short-term gains as well as long-term growth. Contact us now and we’ll be happy to share them with you!

Learn more about owning property in Pattaya.

Bangkok – From Riverside Trading Post to Cosmopolitan World Capital

Bangkok today is the world's 22nd largest city and experiencing a property boom in terms of both the number of projects and their appreciation. The extensive range of property for sale in Bangkok, combined with the city’s world-famous entertainment and leisure options, international-standard amenities and increasingly greater convenience, makes Bangkok property a very desirable investment and the city a very desirable place to live.

The appeal of buying property in Bangkok may be attributed to numerous factors, among them:

  • Having been burdened by the increased cost of living in the west for years, many people are waking up to the fact that they can sell their properties in their home countries and buy a more luxurious property in Bangkok – with enough cash left over to sustain a far more enjoyable upscale lifestyle with services and amenities they never dreamed of from drivers and maids to live-in nannies – all in the warm tropical sunshine.
  • We have found over the years that most people are looking for the same thing: a place in the sun that’s friendly with plenty of leisure activities, but even more important to many is affordable international-standard medical care and for them buying a property in Bangkok is the sensible choice. Thailand is widely regarded to be the global leader in medical tourism, and thousands of Americans and Europeans have been traveling to Bangkok for decades for treatment and a week on the beach, while the country’s huge expatriate community, many of whom have made a property investment in Bangkok, has been availing itself of the city’s numerous private hospitals with state-of-the-art equipment, first-class facilities, and teams of physicians with advanced medical degrees and board certifications from the US and Europe.


Whether you’re an investor, retiree, business person, or someone looking for a second home in a safe, affordable, warm and exciting cosmopolitan world capital, there are dozens of reasons why a property investment in Bangkok offers a tremendous opportunity to realise substantial short-term gains as well as long-term growth from your Bangkok property. Contact us now and let’s talk about them!

Learn more about buying property in Bangkok.

Amata Spring Country Club

Thailand's World-Class Private Club

It is fitting that Arsa Sarasin – principal private secretary to His Majesty the King, business and social icon, and former ambassador to the United States – officially opened Amata Spring Country Club in 2005. The following year, and every year thereafter, he was on hand again to represent His Majesty at the Royal Trophy. The year 2006 also saw the addition of Thailand to the LPGA tour schedule, marking its first visit to the kingdom.

Designed by Lee Schmidt of the award-winning Schmidt-Curley Golf Design team, everything about the dramatically landscaped 7,300-yard course with its mountain backdrop, two enormous lakes, strong winds and varied terrain evokes a sense of grandeur. Our signature floating green Hole 17 was described by the designer as “an architectural marvel.” The year after it opened it was voted Best New Golf Course in Asia by Asian Golf Monthly, and was second runner-up for Best Course in Thailand a year later.

Off the course, it is every bit as clear that this is the jewel in Thailand's golfing crown. Here, bag drop and locker room attendants know all the guests by name and cart and caddie attentively await. From the diversity of restaurants to the breathtaking banquet hall, the luxurious locker rooms, the top-tier pro shop, academy and driving range, the massage therapists and the pool, Amata Spring is a champagne golf club of a stature never before seen in the kingdom – and all just 45 minutes from downtown Bangkok, 20 Minutes from the airport, and 20 minutes from the popular Bangsaen Beach.

Corporate Website, Matsuri Commercial Ltd

FROM PRODUCTS TO MARKETS: SOLUTIONS TAILORED TO THE NEEDS OF OUR CUSTOMERS

Welcome to Matsuri Commercial. With a presence in the key Asian business centers, we are strategically placed to supply high-quality Asian products to a worldwide customer base as well as to assist others in enhancing the competitiveness of their products and maximizing their potential in the regional and global export markets.

Through our network of suppliers and the support of our people on the ground in each production base, we can manufacture or source any product to your specifications, and with our know-how and connections, we're in a unique position to assist up-and-coming enterprises in achieving success in the global marketplace.

Detox Retreat, New Body and Mind

WELCOME TO NEW BODY AND MIND RETREATS ON KOH SAMUI

Congratulations! You found us, which probably means that the highly touted western lifestyle isn't working for you anymore and you're close to making a commitment to change. Perhaps you aren't yet suffering from any of the chronic diseases of the modern world, but environmental and self-inflicted pollution, combined with the relentless pursuit of food, sex and money, are beginning to take their toll, and it's time for some internal damage control.

The New Body and Mind programme of detoxification and purification combines the ancient healing arts of the East with the technological advancements of the West. Situated on the beach in the tropical paradise of Samui Island in the Gulf of Thailand, you will find yourself in the quintessential setting for complete mental, physical and spiritual rejuvenation.

Our trained and certified staff are looking forward to accompanying you on what will surely be the most significant journey of your life, and committed to guiding, nurturing and inspiring you every step of the way. Equally important is the mutual support enjoyed by the community of guests, all of whom are on a common quest for optimal health and longevity.

Mulberry Paper Greeting Cards, MulberryIsland.com

CLASSICS

It was seven hundred years ago that the art of papermaking crept into Thailand from neighboring Burma. These six timeless designs reflect this long tradition and are perfect for any occasion that calls for a special card, each with a sheet of handmade mulberry writing paper inside for a personal message and accompanied by a handmade mulberry paper envelope with peel-and-seal flap.

T-Shirts, Banditoville.com

BANDITOVILLE - EVERYTHING'S A STEAL!

Here at Banditoville we pretty much spend our lives burrowing through remote underground markets and strange secluded stalls in our quest to offer the best collection of streetwear on the web to those who live in better neighborhoods.

From Marley to Mao to Mazinger, you'll find rockers and revolutionaries, martial arts masters and militiamen, gods and goddesses, heroes of comix and anime, bikes, cars and boards - and always plenty of radical humor.

Ebay, Military T-Shirts, Banditoville.com

Royal Thai Army Sniper T-Shirt, L

With threats increasing daily in Thailand's embattled southern provinces, 12,000 soldiers have been deployed to Pattani and Yala. Meanwhile, three Royal Thai Navy battalions are en route to the small provincial capital of Naraithiwat, where the Bang Nara River flows into the Gulf of Siam. You can bet there'll be plenty of these tees down there, but you can be the first dude or dudette in Amarillo to wear one! The Thai script reads: "Royal Thai Army Sniper." In Fatigue Green., 21" shoulder to shoulder, 27" in length.

Ebay, Red Star T-Shirts, Banditoville.com

WOMAN POWER

This rare t-shirt commemorates women's contributions to and sacrifices for an independent Vietnam. Vietnam has a long history of women fighters, from the legendary Trung sisters, who defeated the Chinese army in 40 C.E. through the 20th century, when Vietnamese women fought the Japanese, the French, and later the Americans. Many were young women or girls - valuable assets because they were easy to train and were not as likely to be burdened with family responsibilities. The fact that American soldiers did not regard women and girls as threats increased their value as guerrilla fighters.

Recycled Metal Sculptures, Metaldude.com

Welcome to Metaldude's world - a place where oil-sucking vehicles collapse into heaps of twisted steel in the scorching sun, a desolate landscape littered with the waste of consumerism gone mad.

It was here that Metaldude's mission became clear: he would roam the earth, dragging all this scrap and wreckage to his workplace, and build something from it that would bring a measure of joy to his fellow survivors. These are his creations . . .

Ebay, Shoulder Bags, Banditoville.com

Classic Jimi Hendrix Vinyl Shoulder Bag

Express your appreciation for the uncanny musical talent of Jimi Hendrix with this classic bag. Measuring 13 inches wide by 11 inches high, with an adjustable shoulder strap and a secure inner zipper pocket, it is an attractive and practical tribute to "The Wild Man From Borneo" who changed rock 'n roll forever.

Classic Marijuana Leaf Vinyl Shoulder Bag

You don't have to be a loadie to get off on this sturdy shoulder bag, but it helps. Measuring 13 inches wide by 11 inches high, with an adjustable shoulder strap and a secure inner zipper stash pocket, it is an attractive and practical way to proclaim your love of the weed.

Legends Series Bob Marley Vinyl Shoulder Bag - Large

Celebrate the brilliant and evocative Bob Marley with this sturdy shoulder bag from our Legends Series, a tribute to one of the most charismatic and challenging performers of our time until he was killed, some say, by the CIA. Measuring 13.5 inches high by 11.5 inches wide, with an adjustable shoulder strap and a secure inner zipper pocket, it is attractive and practical and a "must have" for all Marley collectors.

Silk Scarf, SilkBoulevard.com

WARM & GORGEOUS CRINKLED 100% THAI SILK SHAWL/SCARF

Of all the precious goods traveling the Silk Road since antiquity, silk has always been the most irresistible to westerners: during the Roman Empire, it was sold for its weight in gold.

Today silk is still synonymous with elegance. The strongest natural fiber, it also absorbs moisture, retains its shape and shimmers with a luster all its own. Thai silk, with its soft but relatively coarse texture and uneven, slightly knotty threads, is ideally suited for weaving by hand, and has an unmistakably exotic beauty that, with minimal care, will last forever.

Ebay, Cambodian Antiques, Banditoville.com

Antique Rice Farming Implement from Cambodia

Before there were killing fields, there were rice fields. Cambodians have been growing rice for over 2,000 years. Rice is so important to Cambodians that they have over a hundred words for it and have developed hundreds of different strains that grow in different conditions. This is the knife that was used to harvest that rice, and is still used in rural Cambodia. Weighing 300 grams and measuring approx. 25" along the curve of the wood and with a now-rusty 6" blade, this item is a striking wall decoration and conversation piece.

Ebay, Gifts, Banditoville.com

Elegant Teak Sushi Set for Six

This sumptuous sushi set serves six, with six teakwood soy dishes and six sets of inlaid teak chopsticks with matching rests in a handmade mulberry paper box embellished with Chinese graphics and garnished with a skeleton leaf.

Thai Blossoms Strawberry Incense Set

The perfume of Thai blossoms is transformed into incense to fill any living space with tranquility and beauty. Twelve sticks and four bulbs of fragrant strawberry, with a ceramic incense holder, to transport the senses to a floral paradise. Makes a terrific gift in its handmade mulberry paper box garnished with a skeleton leaf.

Set of Six Elegant Hand-Inlaid Chopsticks

The enduring popularity of chopsticks may actually be linked to Chinese cooking methods - before stir-frying the food is cut into tiny pieces, making them easy to manipulate with a chopstick. If you're going to use them, you may as well use really great ones like these: hand-inlaid hardwood, each in it's own handcrafted bamboo sleeve. Makes a terrific gift if you can part with them.

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