Insider Asia Magazine issue 60

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meet t he



Manuschai Kaewrat Art Director

Debbie Oakes Chief Editor

Koraphat Luangsawat Sales Phuket

Francesca Steffen Sales Bangkok

Lisa Allen Makeup Artist

Antoine Melon Contributor

Insider Asia Team

Lilly Carrion Editor & Director of Sales & Marketing

Adriano Trapani Photographer

Frank Couture Contributor

Darren Scherbain Contributor

Anna van Dijk Nutritionist

Oh t he ir on y. . . elcoming you to the Creative Issue of Insider Asia Magazine with a head packed with cotton wool and fingers full of lead. There is no shame in facing the proverbial blank page, white canvas or indeed, new phase of life with trepidation. Maybe that’s the point. To forge ahead regardless. Firm in the conviction that with fear comes the opportunity to prove ourselves to ourselves. To find passion for self-expression regardless of the rumblings of the inner critic. That voice of negativity that silences so many creative ideas. In this issue we talk to many creative people. We ask them about inspiration and passion. Because creation is not only about art. Creation is also about life. Having the courage to think outside of expectation and live according to our own particular set of values. No matter how busy we are between the manifold layers of modern life: jobs, children and social lives… we must take the time to listen to what the heart whispers. And that, at the very least, is what we owe ourselves.

“…As clever human beings, we are more likely to surround ourselves with complicated levels of denial in order to stop ourselves from having to begin” 12 Rules of Creativity, Michael Atavar.

De bbie Oa k e s Editor

Editor’s Note


By LE PARIS PHUKET - BANGKOK Independant bimonthly Magazine English with a French Twist Founded in December 2011

DISTRIBUTION Phuket, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Pattaya, Samui Shanghai, Hongkong, Singapore, Bali, Paris CHIEF EDITOR DEBBIE OAKES ART DIRECTOR MANUSCHAI KAEWRAT EDITOR - SALES AND MARKETING DIRECTOR LILLY CARRION Email: Tel.: +66 (0)8 39 69 78 07 (French, English) SALES IN BANGKOK FRANCESCA STEFFEN SALES IN PHUKET KORAPHAT LUANGSAWAT PHOTOGRAPHER ADRIANO TRAPANI Tel.: +66 (0)8 48 44 92 15 CONTRIBUTORS Lilly Carrion, Debbie Oakes Frank Couture, Panatta Bunthanom , Lisa Allen, Annebe van Dijk, Antoine Melon, Darren Scherbain, Alia Umar, Cheryl Stanfield, Lisa Jorn Rebecca Leiler, Katia Sav, George Mathew, Lakshimi Ramaswami



INSIDER ASIA IS EDITED BY PHUKET LIFESTYLE MULTIMEDIA CO., LTD. 43 Baandon, Cherngtalay Rd., Cherngtalay, Thalang, Phuket 83110, ThaiIand Email : ©Insider Asia All rights reserved.




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SOCIAL SCENE Phuket & Bangkok Social life


Meet the President: BWG

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Quotes of Happiness

EAT & DRINK Jones the Grocer The Spirit of kata Rocks In Vino Veritas Food Reviews Steps with Theera The Curious Gourmand

Meet the Artist: Noe Two Flower Power Myanmar Artsist Aung Ko The Ferry Gallery Eye for detail with Mikoladj Krawczunas Creativity Passion and the Blues Living with Art JJ Market




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The Ghost Fleet of Truck Lagoon Largest Passport Holder Beach Therapy - Akyra Beach Club Marc’s Ark Dream Faster Tented Camp in India

Summer Breeze Spa ahhh You Are What You Eat


Meet the Entrepreneur - Katarina Boner Summer Mood with Ambre Jolie East Meets West A Fine Line Style File


Secrets of Better Living Five Ways to Live a Full and Empowered Life Thaiger FM Elephant Sanctuary in Phuket


The Two sides of Earning Rental Income Project Artisan

MOTORS & TECHNOLOGY Rolls Royce, Cool Modern Luxury


Hot Spot in Bangkok Hot Spot in Phuket

Social Scene THE GRAND OPENING MGC ASIA AUTOPLEX PHUKET Phuket’s first luxury vehicule and full service showroom. Distributor of Rolls-Royce, Aston Martin, BMW, and MINI and sole distributor of Azimut yatchs.


Social Scene


THE Chef Will Holland at The Nai Harn Hotel The Nai Harn Hotel welcomed Michelin-star Chef Will Holland for a culinary journey on Friday, 17 March. He took over the Kitchen at Cosmo restaurant for a “From Coast to Coast� experience. The evening included an exclusive opportunity to savour a degustation six-course menu specially designed and prepared for the lucky guests.

Akyra Beach Club Grand Opening Party! Akyra celebrated their opening with a memorable white party. Exclusive entertainment through out the night included a Fashion Show with vocals by Malika Kazakova. It was the first time for swimwear brand #VILEBREQUIN to showcase their latest collection on a runway in Thailand.


Social Scene

JW Marriott Trainee Chef s Cooking Battle The JW Marriott Phuket Resort & Spa launched the ‘Trainee Chef’s Cooking Battle’ at Marriott Café on the 28th March. There were 22 contestants on 11 different teams from six universities. All students were trained at JW Marriott Phuket Resort & Spa for three to six months by Chef Dietmar Spitzer. Insider Asia Magazine was proud to participate to this contest. It was fantastic to see how passionate the future Chefs of Thailand are about their food art! Congrats to the winning team 10!

Wine celebration at Boat Avenue Insider Asia Magazine met Giacomo Pallesi, wine ambassador of Paolo e Noemia d’Amico Winery on the 28th of March. He presented five wines (two whites and three reds). The wines are from his family’s Estate located in the beautiful “Tuscia” area between Lazio and Umbria regions of Italy. Indigenous and international varietals are blended to give iconic, elegant wines. Thank you Luca Cinì Lovely wine tasting at Luca Cinì - A Wine Story

Social Scene


BWG Music By The River evening British Women’s Group event raiding funds for women and children in need


CATCH BEACH CLUB The French Expat group met on the 24 March for their monthly diner (not dinner) at Catch Beach Club in Bang Tao. Cool beats, great food and atmosphere


Social Scene


Dream Faster. Call us +66 (0) 612 480 285 +66 (0) 924 419 232

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MEET THE PRESIDENT LET S HEAR IT FOR THE GIRLS The Br i t i sh W om e n ’s G r o u p ( BW G ) Pr e side n t G in a C hr i s t ie in he r own wor d s . Interview by Debbie Oakes

As mentioned; I have been an expat for a long time. We moved here from Slovakia. I haven’t worked since leaving the UK but have always been involved in my children’s schools on the PTA and with Women’s Groups. I have been president of BWG for two years and have just started my third. My role involves being head of our committee and working with the committee to make sure we can make the BWG the best it can be for our members. I love being involved with the BWG, seeing new members come in to Bangkok, as well as being involved with those that have been here a number of years. Also, being involved with the welfare work that we do for our various charities.

nsider Asia talks to the women behind the organisations that provide an invaluable level of support for new arrivals, a network of help and friendship for long-term expats and multi-faceted care for the most needy communities in the countries we call home.

I am originally from the UK and have been an expat for 12 years. We came to Thailand for my husband’s job. I really enjoy living in Bangkok, Thailand. It is probably one of the easiest cities I have lived in. There are lots of things going on, the people are friendly and outside Bangkok there are some beautiful places to visit.



The group was formed in 1969 and has around 240 members. Our patron is the partner of the British Ambassador. We are very active in Bangkok and have regular coffees, lunches and activities as well as other social groups such as tennis, golf, art etc. The main purpose of our group is social. Our members can come along and meet other people in similar circumstances and help them to enjoy their experience here in Bangkok and Thailand. We support a number of charities throughout Thailand. Some of them we have been supporting for many years such as The Good Shepherd Sisters, Mercy Centre, Little Birds, Shalom House and many others. The BWG likes to help charities that are involved with the welfare of small children, teenagers and women and these charities cover all of those areas.

Searching for your perfect home in Bangkok? Wandee and her special team will spoil you with a highly personal, professional and ethical touch. The role over the last few years has changed because a women’s group is not always the first stop for people coming in to a new country. There is so much information available now on the Internet and we need to keep our group up to date and interesting for everyone; young and old.

A bespoke, personal service Professional integrity "Always on" service

There are days when you can get frustrated because of the heat, not being able to explain what it is your looking for, or need, because of the language. But overall it is a fantastic country and a great place to live. There is just so much to see and do. Being an expat and meeting people from all different countries and all walks of life is the thing that changed me the most in my life. It is important to accept people for who they are. It doesn’t matter what they do or where they come from, get to know them as a person. My personal motto is ‘Que sera sera’. expat special agents in bangkok

wandee property co.,ltd. Interview t: +66 8 6413 0974 (lekky) e: line: lek.kelly facebook: 1dpropertybangkok




Feel Good


Down Under in Thailand Jones the Gr ocer Interview with Nattapat (Pom) Janthakerd By Debbie Oakes “As we are a Thai – Australian couple we decided to bring Jones the Grocer (an Australian cafe concept) so that Thais can experience as slice of the vibrant Australian cafe culture. Mejico and Zambrero are also concepts from Australia even though they are Mexican cuisine.”

om was born and raised in Ubon Ractchathani, North Eastern Thailand. He tells me: “It was a great place to live and grow up. Rural yet urban at the same time.” “I was a kickboxer for 10 years and earned a living at it. I woke up ‪at 4 am, trained until ‪6:30, then went to school. I would then train again after school everyday 7 days a week. The only way to be known and make more money was by winning. Thus to win; I had to train hard. While training was important so was school and I also maintained my schooling.” But after graduating in 2004, Pom moved to Bangkok. “Just like for many other people up country; Bangkok is the centre. If you want to find a job and develop a career; you need to come here.” Bangkok has good opportunities but, Pom tells me: “It was tough and a little scary. I always believed that Bangkok would make me a fighter in a different sense. I needed to learn and know how to live life on my own. Before my life was simple and easy. Bangkok made me more active, smarter, wise. I learnt to rise and fall. To be a survivor. To be on top of many things all the time. To always be on top my game.” Pom is now part-owner in the restaurants: Jones the Grocer, Mejico and Zambrero and works running Jones along with his ‘great management team’. He says: “My husband (Brenton Mauriello) who runs Architecture and Interior Design firm, DWP (Design Worldwide Partnership) and I decided we needed another challenge and restaurants were it. My husband is a hard worker, strong and smart. He is not just my inspiration he is my adviser, good example and now he is half of my life.”


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Pom gives his trademark million-dollar smile: “From kickboxing to F&B business. It’s very funny, isn’t it? One thing I have always been; is service minded. I am also kind and friendly (I think) and I am genuinely interested in people… So, F&B probably has always been my thing... I just needed a chance to find out.” “I work hard everyday at the restaurant. It is my passion. I am also a father at home; so there is plenty to do. I think it’s the same for everyone. These days people are so busy. When they come to one of our restaurants, I want it to be a genuinely relaxing time for them. Maybe not my most difficult lesson but most important lesson in my life is that as a father you need to set a good example for for your children. As a boss, it’s to be a good example for my staff. Basically learning that there are responsibilities to others that go beyond my own needs and wants. As a youngster I just didn’t think like that.” The ethos of Jones is fresh, good food that is fairly priced and makes you feel good. “Don’t complicate it, just do what you do well” says Pom. Of course we try hard but sometimes we don’t get it right and we take it personally… And that hurts’ Pom smiles. “My restaurants are my passion. Seeing people and making them feel welcome and happy… Importantly it’s also seeing young Thai people get a job and be satisfied with what they do. I give them a chance and I just want them to grab it like I did.” “I used to refuse to do things that I thought were too difficult. I always give up before finishing. One day I went for a job interview, there were about a hundred people in the room fighting for a few jobs. I would have just given up and walked away but I looked around and thought if the others can it so can I… and I got the job. What I learnt was “ be confident and believe in myself “ I use it for any situation now.” “I am the youngest in my family. But I always tell my son whatever you do: do it as best as you can. Don’t give up even if you fail. Lean and believe. Always do your best. Don’t blame others for your difficulties get on and do something about it. I believe there are people that are out there that will help on your journey if they see you are trying!”

“To succeed at business in Thailand you have to truly understand your business and give it all. Working on your strengths and fix the weakness fast. Keep yourself up date and be ready for any situation. It is Thailand after all.” “The next step for Jones is that we are opening a Jones Express concept in central world in a couple of months. We want to be careful as we do things relatively well now and we can’t and won’t compromise our quality of food and service.”


The Spirit of Kata Rocks By Lilly Carrion s your Ocean view bar a gin bar? Phuket’s best sunset bar that showcases unique hand crafted and boutique gins from England, Scotland, Australia, Germany, New Zealand and Thailand. In addition, guests can also sample a wide selection of 24 wines by the glasses available from our Enomatic wine dispensers, plus a comprehensive wine list from The Wine Cellar which is a popular venue for regular tastings. Our Ocean view bar is well stocked with possibly the largest gin collection in Thailand, plus Phuket’s largest variety of wine by the glass as well.

What are the flavours? Only a selected few individuals know the complete recipe and complex distillation process. It has clearly proven to be an audacious combination of rare, eclectic and ultra-fresh ingredients that produced a full-flavoured gin which already is an instant classic.

Why gin? Last year estimated gin sales topped £1billion for the first time and there is no sign of consumption slowing down. According to the Wine and Spirit Trade Association, the number of gin distilleries continues to grow at an extremely rapid pace, while the number of gin bars and pop-up events is also increasing exponentially.

Whose idea was it to have a Kata Rocks Gin? Both Richard Pope (CEO of Kata Rocks and Infinite Luxury) and Kata Rocks GM Scot Toon are huge gin fans. They came up with the idea during a lazy sunset cocktail session last summer.

Like craft beer, new-wave gin appeals to a younger generation of drinkers, who crave quality and authenticity in their drink of choice. Forty-two per cent of 18 to 34-year-olds have recently tried gin, and this can be directly associated with the increase of gin tours and invitation-only subscription gin clubs for connoisseurs across Europe. Where do the gins come from? What are the top selections? The gins come from England, Scotland, Australia, Germany and even Thailand. With over 30 different gin labels to choose from, top selections include but are not limited to Monkey 47, Iron Ball Gin, Martin Millers, G’Vine Ink Dry Gin and the Spirit of Kata Rocks. We intend to continue to grow this impressive collection as additional labels become available. What is special about The Spirit of Kata Rocks gin? The Spirit of Kata Rocks is lovely handcrafted in ultra-small batches infused with a unique combination of 19 local and imported botanicals. It is so special that itrecently won two ‘Double Gold Medal’ awards at the China Wine & Spirit Awards 2017, the largest competition of its kind in the world. The herbs? The secret to our success is from an uncommon pairing of herbs and botanicals. Key ingredients include fresh lemon grass, fresh lemon peel, coriander seed, fresh bergamot leaf, Sichuan pepper, fresh green pepper, green cardamom, white mugwort, fresh pomelo peel, Thai basil and high mountain oolong tea among others.


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What is the story behind the design? The bottle has a very sleek, modern design that reflects the style of Kata Rocks, using our primary colours of silver and blue.

Why did they want to make it? They made it because Kata Rocks is a luxury resort that loves to present its guests with innovative and bold experiences. The gin represents an extension of the Kata Rocks brand and guests are welcome to purchase it. That helps creates an emotional bond with Kata Rocks as we are Thailand’s only resort with its very own award-winning gin. Nikolaus Prachensky, an Austrian distiller who has lived in Chiang Mai for over 10 years handcrafted The Spirit of Kata Rocks. His Edelbrand distillery produces a range of spirits from gin, rice-based vodka to grappa. What can people enjoy to eat with their gin? Our signature Kata Rocks’Gin and Tonic uses organic Chiang Mai strawberries, which also originate from where the gin is distilled. It is a natural pairing as are Chef Laia’s gourmet tapas that are served every evening at sunset. These include gin-inspired clam cakes served with gin and cucumber aioli or steamed oysters in a gin and lime infusion. All are best followed by our ‘Secret Garden’ handcrafted gin cocktail as the perfect palette cleanser. What is the ambience? The bar’s fashionable, chic design has quickly established it as Phuket’s best sunset venue and chill out lounge. It is next to the resort’s signature 35-metre infinity swimming pool where guests often laze about sipping on our iconic gin as the sun go down. A team of talented mixologists creates unique handcrafted cocktails poured only at Kata Rocks from our own custom drinks menu, the most popular offering unique twists on tropical classics. The 180-degree oceanfront viewpoint turns sunset drinks into a nightly romantic event that can last a lifetime.

Kata Rocks gin

What special vents are held at Kata Rocks?r In additionto the stunning oceanfront views, the bar features live musical entertainment from visiting international DJs during weekly ‘Sunset Sessions’ every Friday. Free Mediterranean-inspired tapas are also served each evening from 5:30pm to 7:30pm. Other notable happenings organised at Kata Rocks include its glamourous ‘Collective Series’ evenings. These have quickly become Phuket’s most exclusive social ticket, establishing an identity as a lighthearted celebration of food, creative cocktails, live music and fun. What is the design concept of the resort ? Kata Rocks is an iconic five-star luxury resort and residence that features a fabulous location overlooking the calm, crystal clear waters of the Andaman sea. It offers the perfect blend of modern luxury and comfort in each of its 34 beautifully appointed pool villas and signature Sky villas, which range from 1 to 4 bedrooms offering between 134sqm to 460sqm of living space. The overall design concept of Kata Rocks is luxurious, incorporating contemporary elements and Italian-inspired touches. The stylishly-designed villas are all west facing, boast uninterrupted ocean views and include large terraces with private infinity swimming pools ranging from 7 to 14 metres. 186/22 Kok Tanod Road, Kata Beach 83100 Ban Kata, Phuket, Thailand Contact: +66 (0)76 370 777

Delicious MEAT

Grilled on Wood Fired BBQ Local and imported products to give you the best steak in Phuket

recommends Black Angus, Wagyu and Kobe Chef

Open Every day 28/75 Moo1, Saiyuan Road Rawai, Phuket 83130 BOOKINGS : 063 101 8445




IN VINO VERITAS Lilly C arrion sits down wit h Luc a C i nì , of Win e Story to find out a l i t t l e bi t more abo u t l a dolce vita in Phuke t. By Lilly Carrion

come from Bologna in Italy, which is the home of Lasagne, Tortellini and many other delicious dishes. I left Italy in 2011 and now I live in Phuket. I own a wine shop and wine bar in Boat Avenue - Cherngtalay (Phuket). Specialising in Italian food and wine. It’s what we call an ‘osteria’ in Italy. I remember when my Grandma used to give me a piece of bread soaked in wine. I suppose that was how everything started. Years later, my mum would tell me the adventures of my uncle Ugo. Great wine and food lover. In the early ’70’s he would drive all the way to Bordeaux by car ‘just’ to attend some great wine dinners. So, like many Italians, the passion for good wines and food is definitely in my DNA. I started drinking good wine when I was quite young. Often visiting the first fancy wine bar in my hometown with a good friend who is now a chef. He introduced me to the magical world of premium wines. I remember a very nice trip in Montalcino with him. I became so passionate about wine that I decided to study to become a professional in the wine business. From 2002 to 2003 I attended three AIS courses (Italian Sommelier Association, part of the International Sommelier Association) and the “Marketing of Wine” course at “Gambero Rosso Schools” in Rome. In the mean time I opened a representative agency, in central Italy, selling many top Italian brands. After that I embarked on a new wine shop and wine distribution project in my hometown.


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My adventure in Asia started when I moved to Hong Kong. I worked in the wine industry for almost 3 years, consulting, training and selling wines to the top restaurants and hotels of the city. Now I am here in Phuket to share with my clients & friends the charm of what I like to call ‘the wonderful essence’. My job is all about my passion for wine, food, traditions and the way how to show it and offer it to my clients I choose Thailand and Phuket for a better quality of life. Specifically, Phuket, because I think is a perfect compromise. Beautiful tropical island, not too small, not too big, with an International airport and an interesting local and expat community. Thailand because I think that interest in the wine industry in South East Asia area will grow exponentially in the next few years. My favourite spots are the beautiful beaches in the north-west side of the island, perfect spots to recharge the batteries.

Luca’s Top Tips For tasting, always follow and trust your senses. Nowadays our senses (taste and olfaction) are more compared to the past. Focusing daily on tastes, flavours, smells and scents, is a good training to reactivate our senses. Wine is a wonderful natural essence; also available at a reasonable cost. It is made in so many different ways, styles and aromas. It is for anybody who appreciates good food, tastes, scents, emotions and beautiful moments. On their own or shared with family or friends. Everyone can appreciate wine. I wouldn’t identify a single winery or producer as my favourite, but I definitely identify two wine production areas that I like most. The great Barolo area for the reds and the elegant wines of Friuli for the whites. I prefer the traditional style of a wine to the modern style.

LUCA CINI A Wine Story Boat Avenue, 49/15 Bandon-Cherngtalay Road, Cherngtalay, Ban Thalat Choeng Thale, Phuket, Thailand 83110 Contact: +66(0) 94 804 4461 Email :

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PARK SOCIETY So Sofitel Hotel is the shining tower of cut ting-edge design and French elegance that sits on on the North Silom junction. With glorious vie ws fr om the top, Park Societ y Restaur ant is its beacon of f ine dining and creative cuisine. By Debbie Oakes ndeed, everything at Park Society cries out funk and fusion. From the glass windows that borrow the evening’s midnight blue and Bangkok’s twinkling nightlights, to Chef Joost Bijster’s magical of melding of unexpected flavours. White marble table-tops float like clouds, reflected candlelight bounces of glass and diners are transportedto a worldly seventh heaven above the city’s hustle and bustle. We select a four course menu (there are up to seven). It was easy to select for the Pescatarian amongst us. We started with Hamachi wasabi ice cream which tasted earthy-green and sexy, then on to an incredible chocolate foie gras ‘macchiato’ with perfectly balanced flavours of creamy nutty sweetness. We selected a caviar dish with avocado and lemongrass, which was not only divinely presented with a sliver of gold leaf, but created unforgettable explosion of fragrance and saltiness in the mouth. We all decided upon the rich Thai Tom Yam flavoured lobster bisque with large pieces of lobster claws. We were all right to do so. Chef Joost (who sharpened his culinary knives in Michelin-starred kitchens in his native Netherlands) engaged and surprised us with his explanations of the courses and techniques. The service was impeccable with that fine dining blend of invisibility and attentiveness that leaves you never waiting for more wine. Park Society is not cheap by any standard, but in terms of dining experience, and unique cuisine the price is easily matched.


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The Rooftop bar is another highlight with lounge furniture, chilled music and breath taking views. The perfect spot for an aperitivo or digestivo. Park Society

SO Sofitel Bangkok, Bangkok, Thailand For more information, Contact : +66 (0)2 624 0000 E-mail :

A LITTLE SLICE OF HEAVEN Jones the Grocer Restaurant Review Open weekdays 10-10. Weekends 8-10 By Debbie Oakes ones the Grocer, like Lamingtons, prawns-on-the-Barbie and Pavlova, is a quintessential Australasian treat in Bangkok that everyone can enjoy.

We cannot resist sharing the salt and pepper squid, cooked just right, so that it is soft and tender but crunchy on the outside… Thailand on a plate – salty and sweet with just the right spicy after taste.

The first Jones was launched in Thailand two years ago in EmQuartier. It has been the go-to Sunday brunch destination for Expats and Thais ever since.

We are hungry girls and (believe it or not) there is still room for mains. My friend is tempted by the sound of the 100% premium Wagyu beef burger served with homemade (preservative free) tomato sauce, but worried about the remaining space in her stomach. So she bravely soldiers on with the Parpadelle and beef cheek. There was nothing left at the end of that dish! She told me is was ‘melt in the mouth’, which must have been true. Either that or the plate had a hole in it! I did equally as much damage to the tiger prawns. And as much as we really wanted to try the sticky date and lamingtons (we are true blues after all) there simply was not enough room under our belts! That will be our next adventure at Jones! A sticky date with desert.

Walking in from the mall, the vertiginous raw ceilings, and big windows create a DWP designed industrial-chic ambience. Iron scaffold shelves display Jones’ homemade treats (various condiments and Jones own organic coffee) like designer accessories. The menu of the Ozzie eaterie features everyday fresh home cooked food. In Jones Bangkok, there is is a happy fusion of East meets West cuisine too. Jones is known for all day breakfasts. The selection ranges from BIG with ‘all the trimmings’ to super healthy and (super-delicious) avocado on home-baked rye toast… topped with poached eggs. As I tuck-in, I can’t help but think, it is nothing short of any-time-of-day perfection. My friend orders eggs benedict (delicious she tells me) with the lemon-zest zingy hollandaise. Ordering a superfood salad topped with broccoli, almonds and chic peas we obviously don’t want to be too healthy; so a bottle of bubbly is in good order. Purely for for balance.

The restaurant is available for private home or corporate functions, and the team can offer a catering service. Look out for Jones Express in Central World: coming soon! Jones the grocer

637 Sukhumvit Road, Khlong Tan Nuea, Watthana, 10110 Bangkok, Thailand Hours 10:00 - 23:00 For more information, Contact : +66 (0) 2 261 0382 E-mail :

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COAST to coast In a secluded bay surrounded by palm trees, Coast, the latest beach club by Centara Grand Beach Resort, is ideal for a family getaway or a cozy couples break By Lilly Carrion he Centara Grand is tucked into a green hillside at the secluded end of Karon Beach, one of Phuket’s most pristine white sandy bays. It is one of the few resorts on the ocean side of the beach road, with direct access to the sand. Designed to reflect the gracious Sino-Portuguese shop houses that are such a distinctive feature of Phuket Town. Elegant low-rise terraces line a water park facing out over the Bay.

Let the sea, sun and sounds take you… COAST Phuket Beach Club & Bistro has various bars and restaurants. The hardest decision is to find our perfect spot. It’s the ultimate laid-back cool place for sipping chilled drinks, feasting on fresh food and sharing stories and laughter with friends or family. Ambient tunes play, the barman offers us a delicious tropical cocktail, which convinces us that we are settled in for the long sunny day. The smell of sizzling grilled meats and local seafood, sliders, risotto, delicious pizzas and salads fills the air. All freshly prepared by the Italian chef. The presentation and taste are excellent. The staff are dedicated, offering attention and smiles. Wine is definitely on the list, and beer lovers are covered too, with a variety of chilled brews waiting to be sampled. The huge swimming pool is a perfect continuation of the afternoon and the kids enjoyed all the facilities. It’s one of the best options on the island for families. Parents can relax knowing that the kids will have lots of fun in a safe water playground. As the sun slides into the sea and day gives way to a starry night, we move to the bar overlooking the beach and have two or three glasses of Prosecco, listening to the DJ. Coast Beach Club is one of the newest sunset chillouts in South Phuket.


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COAST Beach Club Opening Hours: 11:00 – 23:00 Location: Centara Grand Beach Resort, 683 Karon Beach, Patak Road, Karon Tel: +66 (0)7 620 1234


Toes in the Sand at the Cove

A chic beach house, the Cove has an open kitchen, a huge open bar and tables al fresco on a deck facing Ao Yon bay of Cape Panwa. By Lilly Carrion Photographer: Adriano Trapani he view is breath taking. I feel as though I have discovered the only secret piece of Phuket untouched by tourism. Dining on the deck listening to the waves and admiring the sunset is bliss. The Cove Bar offers a range of delicious refreshments, from freshly prepared morning juices and smoothies, to the island’s finest rum punches and cocktails, the perfect sunset accompaniment. The bar manager, Fernando Alcantarilla, is busy welcoming guests and mixing our favourite drinks. All the things I am temped to eat at the beach are on the menu: delicious light salads, burgers, squid tempura, simple grills, fish, meat and of course, delicious wood fire oven pizza. The delicious grilled mango with vanilla ice cream is not to be missed. The service is attentive and friendly, and the wine list is excellent. To me, the Cove is the perfect place for meeting up with friends in the morning and for long leisurely lunches under the shade of the palm trees with your feet in the sand or romantic sunset dinners The Cove Phuket

8/1 Moo.8 Tambon Wichit, Ao Yon Beach Phuket, Thailand Contact : +66(0)6 22 42 34 42


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The Cove Phuket 8/1 Moo.8 Tambon Wichit, Ao Yon Beach Phuket, Thailand Contact : +66(0)6 22 42 34 42 facebook/thecovephuket



WE GOT IT ALL! Steps With Theera C RE ATIVE and DELICIOU S GLU T EN FREE, VEGA N, VE G E TARI A N , OR GA N IC, CA RN I VOR OU S , SO CIAL EN T ERPRI S E CA FE By Cheryl Stansfield teps with Theera is a coffee shop and vocational training centre for young adults with Special Needs. Theera cafe offers many delicious options for everyone from those that are concerned with eating clean to others that have dietary restrictions. From Gluten Free bread to meatballs, the menu is varied and the focus is on healthy eating. Organic ingredients are sourced locally through the Royal Projects, providing fresh, clean, healthy menu choices. During lunchtimes the Steps trainees will often be found serving and making drinks for the customers. This is fundamental to their UK accredited vocational training programme. Gaining experience with customer service, food preparation, and service helps the trainees achieve the objectives needed to gain their qualification. Importantly this also increases their confidence and social skills. Steps With Theera has helped fill the gap in Thailand for special needs young adults, enabling the trainees to achieve the skills required to be employable and independent.


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“Healthy Food” doesn’t have to mean boring, tasteless or bland. At Steps With Theera the food is delicious, fresh and the portion size will never leave you hungry. Dessert is a must also. How can you resist when the cakes, slices and cookies are all healthy? Don’t forget to take home a bag of chocolate energy balls that will keep you coming back for more! MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN YOUR COMMUNITY. Join us at Steps With Theera for a wonderfully healthy brunch, lunch or just a coffee. You are supporting young adults with special needs, who need your support to gain a life of independence that we all take for granted. Pave the way to a bright future by visiting today! Steps With Theera

will soon be open for dinner. 29/8 Ekkamai Soi 10. Parking is available in Ekkamai Soi 10 Yaek 4 Phone : 02-381-6590 Email : /



The Curious Gourmand CHOP CHOP A n toine shares delic iou s e xc e r pts of his en tertaining and inf or m ation a l book, The Curious Gou r m a nd , e xc lusively for I n side r A si a By Antoine Melon

HOPSTICKS Though a gastronomic paradise of traditional foods, Lyons in my youth had very few foreign restaurants; and the restaurants that did exist were more gimmick than good quality. Consequently, I only learned how to use chopsticks when I went to Thailand in 1994 for my final internship at the Bangkok Méridien. Despite a lot of practice, it took me a while to become proficient, though eventually I could pick up single grains of rice and even green peas. The English word “chopstick” comes from chop chop, which means “quick” in pidgin, the Chinese - English dialect that evolved during trade in seventeenth century ports along China’s Pacific coast. Under China’s Shang dynasty China’s population rapidly expanded. Forests were cut down to make way for cultivated land; fewer forests meant less wood, which meant that cooks had to be extremely frugal when using tinder. As a solution, the Chinese began cutting everything from meat to vegetables into very thin slices, which meant food cooked more quickly, thereby conserving wood. Furniture was also expensive and rare. So when eating, an the Chinese needed to support the bowl in one hand, while picking up food with the other. Chopsticks were a simple but clever solution to the problem. Wielding chopsticks, people could deftly pick up the thin slices of food single handed. From the Tang dynasty onward, Chinese emperors used silver chopsticks, believing that the metal would change colour if it came into contact with poison. During my time in Hong Kong, I carefully followed chopstick etiquette: you should not help yourself with your chopsticks directly from the sharing dish; never stick your chopsticks upright into a bowl of rice. Foreigners who fail to observe these rules are thought very uncouth.


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Welcome to

The Siam

The Siam Hotel

3/2 Thanon Khao, Vachirapayabal, Dusit, Bangkok 10300, Thailand T. +66 (0) 2 206 6999 F. +66 (0) 2 241 8757


2016 The Last Hope

Portrait of an Artist

NOE TWO S treet A rtist By Lilly Carrion was born and grew up in Paris. I have been living in Normandy since 2010. I love it for its calm and the surrounding nature. But I need to go to Paris often for the energy that the city offers me and to feed myself artistically. Since I was a little boy I liked to draw. It is my means of self-expression. I do not know if I chose art or art chose me. It is just an integral part of my personality. I was artistic when I discovered the HIP HOP culture and especially the discipline of Graffiti. My artistic movement is graffiti. My art is a reflection of who I am today. I express subjects through my work that I am sensitive to. I can say in one sentence that my art is my identity. I’m an autodidact. I am enriched and nourished by all forms of art. My passion is my engine.


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37 2015 The Lost Kingdom 140x180cm

My latest project: Wat Kor It was initially, a meeting due to chance and destiny. Five years ago, I had a video project where I went to meet the Thai people through graffiti. On my first expedition, my friend Julien of: “Along the Klong” took us by boat to visit the klongs of Tonburi. On the way, we stopped at the WAT KOR temple. We were admiring this old temple of several centuries when a delirious idea came to me to paint on the facade. Julien spoke a few words of Thai and asked one of the Buddhist monks if we could see the person in charge. Pra Moo, the monk who is the second in charge, came to meet us. He was a bit septic and suspicious. At first, he did not like the idea and did not understand my artistic approach. I was about to abandon my idea. I fully understood their reasons but I was a little disappointed. We asked one last time if there was a small wall around the temple that I could paint. Pra Moo took us to another temple that is more than three centuries old. He opened a big red door and he told me that I could paint on the back wall. I could not believe it! I was so excited about the idea of painting inside a Buddhist temple. I asked him what he wanted me to paint. I began by painting a large Buddha head with the spray. They loved it. So they asked me to do a second one in a meditation position on another wall. I had to buy paint and brushes to continue. The monks were delighted. They finally asked me to paint the whole temple. But the next day I went to Phuket. This project did not leave my mind. I returned the following year to continue painting in this temple. As a result, we have created strong bond of friendship.


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This year again I went back to continue this work. It is the first Buddhist temple in the world with graffiti. For me, it is as if I were making my Sistine Chapel. My main constraint is to link my culture of “Graffiti” to the values of Buddhism. This project is very important to me and I fund it alone. Ideally, I would like to paint in this temple every year. My motivations in life are to continue to realise myself as an artist and to leave a great work behind me. My personal evolution, my perception of the world, my artistic influences, and my research have allowed me to develop my art. Today, my maturity has repercussions on my works. I discuss topics that are deeper and dear to my heart. My inspiration comes from my life, my travels, my meetings, animals, history, music ... My passion drives me every day. It’s like breathing, walking, eating, I need it to live. I love the work of many artists from very different artistic universes. I do not enclose myself in a single reference. TRAVELS: Thailand is the country that touches me with the kindness of the Thai people, its exciting culture, its delicious cuisine, its beautiful nature and wildlife. I dont know where will be next destination , but I am thinking about it Where did you see yourself in 10 years :
I do not know. For me life is a great experience. I especially want to continue traveling the world. My original works are exclusively sold in the galleries Bartoux in Honfleur, Paris, London, New York and Singapore NOE TWO Art Store Call me +66 (0) 848 44 92 15 Email :

39 2016 Lion.Roaring 140x140cm

FLOWER POWER Q a nd A wit h M ich ae l Pr itc hard By Lilly Carrion here are you from? From Sydney Australia and based in Bali, Indonesia for the past 27 Years. Bali is an amazingly creative island with a beautiful culture and lifestyle that I can easily relate to. Have you always been a floral artist? I started working with flowers at the age 8 with our neighbours that were in the industry doing home demonstrations of flower arranging and selling associated merchandise. This was on weekends and during school holidays. At the age of 19 I went into the film industry studying to become a Director. My love of flowers brought me back to the industry at 21 when I was offered my own retail outlet to manage. Did you study or self taught? I was self taught but had been encouraged by two top floral designers in Sydney, June and Michael De Jong. I also attended Sydney Tafe and studied floral design. What attracted you to flowers? My love for flowers came from my mother as she was an avid gardener and we had a magnificent garden at our family home. What inspires you? Mother Nature is my biggest influence. Creating designs from unusual organic forms inspires me. What are you passionate about? In my personal life my passions are food, wine, cooking and travel and of course designing unusual floral art for special clients. Describe your floral art in a sentence. Bold, modern, structural, with a sense of the unusual. All of my designs are one-off as every flower has a character of its own. They can be very sculptural using tropical blooms or using classic flowers combined with a twist. If you weren’t doing this what would you be? I love cooking so being a chef in my own restaurant sounds appealing. Describe how your work has evolved In Sydney all our work and design was relatively classic using more standard flowers like roses, carnations, lilies, in traditional designs. When I moved to Bali I discovered tropical flowers and foliages which lent themselves to larger unique, structural and modern designs. What do you love about what you do? Exceeding our clients’ expectations is always a goal. What are your top tips for being creative? Thinking out of the box.


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Do you think everyone can be creative? I think it is easy for most people to copy a design, but i would say no, not many people are creative. Who has been your greatest inspiration? Bill Bensley has definitely inspired many of my latest designs particularly with his industrial design at The Slate Hotel. He created many areas that required my unique designs throughout the hotel with a gallery of flower sculptures in the lobby. What life event changed you? Sailing around the world at the age of 21 on a square rigged sailing ship (Eye of the Wind) that was build in 1904 for eight months visiting many of the most remote places in the world. Who is your favourite artist? Vincent Van Gogh. I loved his portrayal of flowers and landscapes. If you could give one piece of advice to a large group of people what would it be? Never give up achieving your goals in life. Who or what are your favourite floral artists? Jeff Leatham and Mike Hines. Who inspired you the most in your life June De Jong- who cultivated my love for the finer things in life.

Where are your shops? Heliconia Flower Shop At JL.Sunset Rd 88 Seminyak Kuta Bali 80361 Indonesia A rt a nd C u lt u r e


Myanmar artist AUNG KO By Oakes By Debbie Lilly Carrion Photographer: Oliver Schibli

&A with ARTIST AUNG KO Versatile artist Aung Ko, never a slave to medium, works with painting, pottery, film, performance and installation to support and further his artistic concept Where are you from? I was born in Htone Bo, Myanmar. Where did you study? I studied fine art in Yangon art University. I Graduated in 2002 and since then I have worked as an independent artist. Have you always been an artist? Yes, I am married to art. I feel I chose art. There was nothing else I wanted to do. To find my ability as a human for creation before I die.


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What is your latest project and what inspired it? My latest project is sculpture of myself. I am exploring the way I am living. What are you passionate about? I always asking myself this. This is important to know in order to know who you are. That’s why I always follow myself but am always lost to myself. Describe your art in a sentence. Art is very difficult to describe exactly. Like how our own body functions. How we can say exactly what it is to be alive. We are more than our brains, hearts, feet, hands, teeth, ears… and yet we are those things too. If you weren’t an artist what would you be? If I weren’t an artist; I would be an original villager. Describe how your work has evolved and why My work is based on my happiness. Yes, happiness is my dream. My work always made me happy as a child. Where do the ideas come from? The ideas always come from our own identity. What do you love about what you do? I love the mind . . . I mean my human mind. What are your top tips for being creative? For me; being creative is my happiness. Happiness is very important for my life. I would like to know what is real happiness. Do you think everyone can be creative? I do not think so! Most people think they can be creative but real creativity is very difficult. How can people develop their creativity? Of course, they need to be interested in developing their creativity... for it to be impossible to find good life without expressing it. Who or what has been your greatest inspiration and why? Buddha is my greatest inspiration. Buddha knows about the mind and how to live a great life.I find inspiration in my wishes. If I do not know what I wish for; I cannot not create. @Myanmar artist Aung Ko “Ko Shwe” (2013) at Primo Marella Gallery

What life event changed you? My life is always up side and down. Who is ur favourite artist? Picasso. He knew how to create art with simplicity. I love all of artists. I love all pieces of work made with integrity What advice do you have for people that want to buy art? Decisions . . . the right decision is only to buy art work. What is your personal motto? “ Find who you are. Know what are you doing. “ Do you currently have any exhibitions? What is your website? Currently I do not have any exhibitions. I do not have my own website. You can buy my art work at Gallery Adler, Bangkok Primo Marella gallery, Milano River gallery, Yangon

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rtist Kawita Vatanayankur created the The Ferry Gallery in January 2014. It is a privately owned art installation space ferry on the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok. She started it as a way to promote the contemporary art scene and to bring contemporary art to commuters who can now enjoy artwork as they travel. Previous exhibitions have included avant garde photography projects by foreign and Thai artists. Kawita Vatanayankur is originally from Bangkok, Thailand. She moved to Melbourne, Australia when she was in high school and graduated there. She has since returned to Bangkok. She tells me: “I have always been an artist since graduating from RMIT Fine Arts in Melbourne. I chose to be an artist because I loved the way it tells us about the world, the society we live in, it makes us realize who we are and what we should do as human beings. I think making art is a way to seek truth beyond definition, beyond tradition and image. It is to create a new culture.” “Being artist is being able to speak out loud about issues in society. To me art is like being an activist. To help support women’s work and labour issues and gender equality.” “I am a video artist currently I am working on a commission piece for the Australian Centre for Photography. It is called ‘Carrier’. It is about a transition of identity while moving to a new (strange) place. And it is of course also about women’s work especially those from an Asian background. It is A performance-based investigation of social and cultural ideologies related to the value of female everyday labour.” “My exploration of everyday and domestic work is particularly telling of my Thai homeland. A place where for many, daily chores aren’t always assisted by technology or white goods but are time-consuming, physically exhausting, and most often women’s work. The happy, day-glow colours, dark humour and undercurrents of violence in my videos, however, bring a universality and contemporary currency to the historical trajectory of feminist art. I call the work “meditation postures” which is counterposed against the gruelling tests of resilience and fear, which are quite the opposite of what we might think of now as Zen. Extreme physical endurance offers a way to free myself from my mind: a mechanism to lose our sense of being. This deliberate objectification, turns the body into sculpture.” “I find my Inspiration everywhere... whether it is life events or small things I see everyday. I usually watch films to get inspired.”


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EYE FOR DETAIL By Lilly Carrion Photographed By Mikolaj Krawczunas

illy Carrion talk to Mikolaj Krawczunas, Photographer. Where are you from? “I’m from Warsaw, Poland and based in Bangkok. I travel a lot; which I like. Do you like living in Bangkok? I really enjoy living in Thailand because of the Thai people, which makes every day a special. Have you always been a photographer? I like to think so. When I was really young I loved to watch clouds for hours, and painted very crazy worlds. (Unfortunately no talent for any kind of painting followed through). Did you choose art or did art choose you? I think we choose each other. I began shooting at a very early age. Mostly close ups of fractures in nature. I was always fascinated about a world which is invisible to others. Study art or self taught? Self taught in the beginning. After high school I was accepted into the most prestigious film school in the Poland “Państwowa Wyższa Szkoła Filmowa, Telewizyjna i Teatralna im, Leona Schillera w Łodzi, famous around Europe.



What attracted you to photography It was quite natural choice for me, which I made organically. I was always interested in images. Due to a lack of painting skills I turned my interest to photography. Now I’m exploring the world of moving images. What is your latest project and what inspired it? The latest project is my series called “shiny shadows” and was inspired by my fascination nature and its textures. What are you passionate about? Tiny bugs that are hiding in various amazing textures and perfection. They are so small but in photos we can see the perfect architecture of their forms, which is similar to bridges and metalwork. Describe your art in a sentence. I focus on colour and texture which I see around me, to make our lives richer. My unique style is in the light, which shapes all structures, focusing our eyes on new elements. Describe how your work has evolved and why My work is evolving towards people and their stories. Where do the ideas come from? A lot of my ideas come from movies. I love to be inspired by other people’s worlds. What do you love about what you do? I love to be involved with people. When I go on a shoot, especially after travelling to places where the people are so culturally different, I feel like I’m squeezing space. Particularly when everyone involved in the project is living together very closely and depending on each other. This creates the most amazing memories. What has been your greatest inspiration? My greatest inspiration is still nature, which the best, most crazy, creator. Who is ur favourite artist? I really like the work of Jackson Pollock. His work creates an imaginary world. I think everybody can find their own story in his painting because there is an eternity of pattern which is a never ending story. If you could give one piece of advice to a large group of people what would it be? Give yourself more free time. More time for just sitting and thinking, without a book, computer or phone. Then ideas will come, sooner or later. What is your personal motto? Work hard and you will get somewhere, even if not where you want then for sure you will find some good places on the road to the main purpose.



Creativity Passion and the Blues

Hua Hin based Irish sculptress Elizabeth Jorn was born in Malaysia and brought up in Singapore and now calls Hua Hin home. By Elizabeth Jorn

o something you are passionate about,’ is the message behind many a TED talk. But what happens if passion dies, if creativity flees with the muses hot on its heels? Can passion be rekindled? Can the tempestuous love affair find a spark strong enough to re-ignite it? I believe it can… Being creative is fertile soil for inspiration. Picasso said ‘Inspiration exists but it has to find you working,’. Particularly, I believe, when in the doldrums. Throughout my life different artists or events have inspired different stages in my creative journey. From a small soapstone carving I bought in Singapore’s Change Alley as a child, to my first visit as a young teenager to the Egyptian sculpture department in London’s British Museum, the tactile quality of sculpture always held an appeal. Sometimes pivotal moments in life can go past unnoticed until later. A retrospective exhibition in Bangkok by Moontien Bonn was, several years later, one of the catalysts that led to my return to university much later.


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I consider myself to be very lucky to be doing what I love and thriving in the relatively unstructured life of an artist. Nevertheless, a few years after the death of my partner, I decided that I needed a career shake up. After nearly three decades abroad I returned to the UK for two years to do a Masters Degree in Fine Art in Liverpool. I had been ‘warned’ when applying that I would not be creating bronze sculptures. Nevertheless, revelling in the idea of new experiences and enjoying having my norms challenged, off I went. But it was a bit like being thrown in the deep end of a pool. Culture shock, returning to education after more than 30 years, and (at the same time) unexpectedly losing the Hua Hin home I had shared for 18 years with my partner Jorn (the landlord re-leased the property and the new leasers decided to knock it down), were all difficult adjustments. The degree was stimulating. But at times seemed so academic I felt I was completing a philosophy masters. I love the physicality of making. I am a very hands-on person. Work at the college tended to be very conceptual. It took a while to settle in, but by the end of the two year course, I was ready to ‘play’ and explore the opportunities being a student again gave me. Often I used ideas stemming from the simple act of walking. I experimented with film, installation, performance and writing. A current sculpture in progress; ‘Leaves,’ is an interesting collaboration of my bronze work, university practise, and a month long solo walk across Ireland that I embarked on after graduating. The idea of the tormented artist is a meme that runs through many societies. Whether it is true or not; creativity can definitely arise out of negative times. Challenging or changing periods in life tend to make us question things more deeply than we tend to do when life is strumming along smoothly. Doing nothing can be part of the work necessary to be an artist, times when one allows ideas to percolate. Yet paradoxically there are barren times when perhaps just doing is what is called for. Sol LeWit wrote to the artist Eva Hesse when she was going through an artistic block. His pragmatic advice: ‘Just DO.’ Similar advice was given to me when struggling during my Masters: Do ‘bad art. This is advice can be beneficial in many ways. Do bad art. Means free yourself from self-imposed restrictive limitations. So often people have said to me: ‘I can’t draw’ or ‘I haven’t a creative bone in my body’. I believe anyone who can hold a drawing tool can draw. What they are often really saying is ‘I can’t draw like some preconceived notion I have as to what drawing is’. Creativity comes from a kind of continual questioning, wondering, curiosity and passion. For a while when I experience my own artistic block I made boxes. And for a while I did a drawing a day. I feared my love had died but just doing and doing one step at a time gave me the joy of just making until passion and inspiration came a calling together again. Experiment with dropping the idea of doing ‘good art’; create for yourself. Be authentic and have fun. The appeal of many artists’ is that behind the work there exists an exuberance. A revelling in being alive, conscious and part of the weird, interesting mutable world. I think when passion dies, like with depression, it can be hard to keep going. So take one step at a time. A drawing a day or another small goal. I think everyone has the ability to be creative and to revel in creativity. It can lead us to dark places. But it is also a gift that can give us time to explore ourselves, to communicate with ourselves and the world. An artist’s work might not always be interpreted as intended; but that is the same with words all forms of communication. Ultimately we are all alone and yet we are also all minutely interconnected with others. Creating art gives us the gift to be with ourselves that may, with luck or plain hard work, offer a chance encounter with life-sustaining passion.

@Blue Gaia A small 60cm Gaia was first created by Elizabeth while working from a shop house in Klay Nam Tai, Bangkok. This Blue Gaia 130cm limited edition piece was finished last year.

At present as well as sculpture, I am drawing and taking photographs. I am interested to see how my own artistic practise will develop. I was amused and intrigued by this term ‘artistic practise’ which was used commonly at Uni. An active verb, also used with other interests such as yoga and meditation, implies an unfinished state, a journey or gradual growth… Elizabeth Jorn’s bronze sculptures are in private collections world wide from Finland to Australia. And are in gallery’s in Norway, Australia and England. In Thailand her work can be seen at the Artist Village, Hua Hin Art to Art Gallery O.P Place Bangkok and on her website She will be exhibiting in Bangkok in 2017 PHOTOGRAPHS Gaia. A small 60cm Gaia was first created by Elizabeth while working from a shop house in Klay Nam Tai, Bangkok. This Blue Gaia 130cm limited edition piece was finished last year. Leaves. The footsteps in dying leaves was inspired by a month long solo walk across her native Ireland and a Greek myth; where a Sibyl wrote the future on leaves which she left outside for people to read or the wind to blow away. Waiting for Something to Happen. This humourous sculpture reminds us to go and grab life and not just to sit waiting for it to happen to us.

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LIVING WITH ART By Armelle Cohen of Why Don’t You Concept store and Adler Gallery. By Debbie Oakes

y husband Joel Cohen and I are Art Dealers and our first deep love is Contemporary Art. For us living with Art is not a lifestyle it’s more than that! It is indispensable Art is life. Artists are like philosophers. They speak of our concerns, our hopes, our dreams and they shed light on the society we live in. A good piece of Art is a mirror. The art you choose shows your unconscious mind, so in a way, it helps you to understand yourself and live better. The photography I love the most in my house is “Paradise Portrait” by Ewin Olaf (the old clown) at the entrance of my bedroom. Some mornings I see him crying with happiness, some mornings I see him afraid and alone, and some days I see him sad. The energy he has in his eyes can be read in so many ways. It foretells how my day because it reflects my feelings... Art is like a good friend with whom you can have a conversation. The sculpture around my swimming pool is a sculpture to be happy. It is a poodle of 2.5 m is called “15.” Adrienn Meszaros’ sculpture is designed to be climbed. There are earphones and you can listen people applause. It’s very good for your self esteem!


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It to evaluate a collection with the collector is interesting. We used to say in the business that a piece of art is with you intellectually with you for a certain time and it helps you to think... and most of the time you move forward. My husband and I are a little crazy because for us decoration is a game. We are not afraid to change the colours of the walls. More than that, I would say that it is a way to open new doors and close others. When we lived in Paris we used to change the same room every six months. Some seasons we wanted energy so we painted red, some times we chose a kinetic design to accelerate life. Decoration should be coordinated with your feelings. To bring energy and peace... And art is really a way to increase that feeling. We have also invited many artists from street art culture to come to paint on our walls. It is a way to play with the architecture. It creates focus on one place and can distract from another. Two Brazilian artists, Marcelo Eco and Guga Bagyon, co-operated in our entrance to hide our door and to put colour when people leave. For us colours are like musical notes. We are very eccentric and eclectic. We mix many styles. The important thing is balance. There are no rules. The only law is to respect every objet, the space in which each objet exists. Variety is the spice of life. Contemporary art with Art Deco and antiques .... as long as it reflects you .... there is no bad taste!


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Located in the heart of Nai Harn, just 5 minutes drive to the peaceful Nai Harn Beach. Fully furnished, 2 bedroom and 2 bathroom, the spacious living areas and bedrooms are surrounded by a large outdoor terrace . Ideal as a private residence or as a holiday home that will generate great rental return .




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ART AT THE HEART OF JJ MARKET SECTION SEVEN I nside r A sia tal k s to some of the artists and c re ators in C h at u ch ak m ar k e t ’s section se ven to find out a bit m or e a bou t w h at t he y do and wh at in spires them. We find an e xc iting ly c r e ati ve and c lose comm unit y. By Debbie Oakes

Ronald T. van Biene MD of Super SOSO! has been in Thailand for many years from Holland. He works with Solenne Auvret, a designer from Paris, to create ‘Gifts for cute people’. The shop stocks home and kitchen ware for kids of all ages: Plates, Cups, Aprons, Bibs, Bags and much more, all decorated with their signature artwork. They also have a gorgeous range of wood prints. +66814397260

Paul De Blieck


from Belgium has been in Thailand for 15 years. 10 years at the same shop in section seven. He began with painting and sculpture. His colourful and feature-piece baby heads have a my thological quality to them and are only available here. +66894523317 A rt a nd C u lt u r e

Pramual Thungprue

is one of the six partners at Yellow Ground gallery. He has been at JJ for five years. His big eyed and intricately ‘tattooed’ characters are inspired by people he sees walking past every day. “I am stimulated by a crossing of cultures. The soft ‘tattoos’ give the faces new meaning and are like unspoken thoughts.” +66814408129

Spacious, friendly, inspiring and art studio in the heart of Bangkok.


Seri Phuengporn

Has been in section seven since 2000. He creates breath taking portraits with texture and colour using acrylic. He tells me that he is inspired by the Expressionist art movement but interprets it in a modern way. He began by using different language scripts, characters or numbers to form the foundation of his work, but says that it is now free-flowing from his mind. +66894788875

Painting and drawing lessons for anyone aged 3 years to 100 years!! Why don’t you drop in and meet an eclectic bunch of people painting because we want to!! Or call Laurie on the number below for a chat. Every Wednesday “Life Drawing Classes” all levels welcome

Kids Classes “Mini Monets” Aged 5 -9 years Every Saturday 10-1pm & 1:30 to 4:30pm

Tyler Tilleyis

originally from Canada has been at JJ on and off for two years. His art is wonderfully eclectic, exciting and unusual. He tells me he can be working on many different pieces at the same time… but usually has to complete within two months ‘or the idea is gone’.

Adult Classes Monday to Friday 10-1pm Sunday 1-4pm atticstudiosbangkok

Exciting new classes:

Preschoolers art club, after school kids art clubs and now relaxing evening classes for adults!!!

Elements of Art mixed media, drawing classes, Painting classes


Tel: +66(0)2 662 0224 Mobile: +66 (0)93 950 0046 45/5 Sukhumvit Soi 31, Klongtan Nua, Wattana, Bangkok 10110, Thailand

Attic studios


THE GHOST Fleet of Truck Lagoon Written & Photographed By Frank Couture

Mic r one si a in t he m iddl e of t he Pa cif ic O ce a n f you were a Japanese soldier based in Micronesia in the middle of the Pacific Ocean on February 17 1944, you probably did not have the greatest day of your life. Most probably; you just had your last one. On that day, on an atoll known as Truk Lagoon, (nowadays part of the Federated States of Micronesia), in front of the horrified eyes of the few locals living on those tiny islands far away from the rest of the world, what is referred to as Japan’s equivalent to Pearl Harbor; unfolded. During World War II, the lagoon was host to Japan’s Imperial Fleet, a naval base considered the most formidable of all Japanese strongholds in the Pacific. On the various islands the Japanese had built roads, trenches, bunkers, airstrips, and caves. A significant portion of the Japanese fleet was based on Truk,: battleships, aircraft carriers, cruisers, destroyers, tankers, cargo ships, tugboats, gunboats, minesweepers, landing craft, and submarines. Operation Hailstone, launched on that particular 17 February by the US Navy, lasted for three days, American carrier-based planes sank twelve Japanese warships and thirty-two merchant ships, while destroying 275 aircraft, mainly on the ground. The consequences of this attack made Truk the world’s largest sunken ship graveyard. Most of the fleet remained in exactly the same spot it was left, largely forgotten by the world, until the late 1960s when Jacques Cousteau’s 1969 film Lagoon of Lost Ships explored the wrecklittered lagoon. Many of the wrecks are visible through the shallow, clear water, making it an accessible dive. The wrecks themselves can be very dangerous, not only because of ragged edges and tangles of cables, but because of half-century old oil and fuel leaking into the water. This creates a potentially toxic situation. Caustic substances like high octane aviation fuel, oils, gasoline and acid exist on many of the wrecks. Explosives, mines, munitions, detonators, torpedoes and shells are still “live”.


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A number of the shipwrecks lie in crystal clear waters less than fifteen meters below the surface. In waters devoid of normal ocean currents, divers can easily swim across decks littered with gas masks and depth charges. Below deck evidence of human remains can be found. In the massive ships’ holds are the remnants of fighter aircraft, tanks, bulldozers, railroad cars, motorcycles, torpedoes, mines, bombs, boxes of munitions, radios, plus thousands of other weapons, spare parts, and other artifacts. Truk is the best wreck diving in the world because the wrecks are so numerous, beautiful and preserved. You are allowed to penetrate into the wrecks but not to remove any artifacts. The wrecks of Truk Lagoon are war graves. Strict policies exist that prevent the removal of any artifacts or marine life from the wrecks. The Truk people hope to preserve their lagoon as an underwater living monument and museum of the war.



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How to get there:

Only two flights per week land on Truck Lagoon. Both are via United Airlines departing from the tiny Island of Guam. As Guam is United States territory, one peculiarity of diving Truck is that you will have to enter the United States first. This means you will need a visa or an electronic approval prior to landing (depending on your citizenship) to pass US immigration in Guam. Even if you re-exit the US 10 minutes later to take your connecting flight to Truck. Beats me. I have never seen anything like this anywhere else in the world. Count your blessings if your luggage actually arrives with you after all the stops!

Where to stay:

There is nothing in Truck…. Well, not much at least. Even compared to other remote Asian dive destinations, Truck feels like you have landed in the middle of nowhere. Quiet a poor nowhere. The one dive shop /resort that has pioneered the destination is Blue Lagoon Dive shop. The staff are extremely friendly, and like most Islanders there, fabulously overweight and slow. Well, what do expect on an island where nothing grows, where internet works two hours a day and the local supermarket shelves have only American made canned food?

The Dive:

Divers in Truck should be experienced and autonomous. The local dive-master’s guidance and respect of international safety rules is, at best, described as “nonchalant”. Not many spare parts to be found over there either; so check your gear before you go. The water is warm, no current. Nitrox dive is recommended as you will want to have time to explore the wrecks at medium depth. The fauna is not very developed (strangely), however the corals, both soft and hard, are probably the most amazing I have seen so far. And the wrecks! Well, If Truck was Hell to the poor Japanese souls on that terrible 17 February 1944 day, it is now wreck diving paradise. Your eyes will probably not believe what remains untouched under water after more than half a century. Enjoy it. Respect it. Shark route trips in full safety are organized every year in January. Contact me at for more info

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SANJEEV MIDHA A Face to Face with America’s largest passport holder By Alia Umar


Simplicity is the key. No one ever won a noble prize for being complicated. Whenever humanly possible, spend time, energy, and resources on the riches of simple experiences in life and not on the possessions.

hen meeting Sanjeev and his wife Sunita last year, it felt like I was renewing an old friendship, comfortable. Besides being food lovers, avid readers, concerned and dedicated parents, we found a connection which would seal our friendship: travelling with an unrivaled passion. Sanjeev, grew up in a small town in the foot of the Himalayas in Northern India. After finishing his studies in engineering, he went to work for a few years in the software industry. He got his first shot at travelling overseas to New Zealand for a software assignment. Later, he decided to study for his Master’s degree in Computer Science in the USA, finding a job on Wall Street, while working his way progressively through another degree. This time in Finance and additional education. Sanjeev then started a financial engineering company in a joint partnership soon taking the company from a garage operated start up, to a global company with footprints in many countries. After selling their company, Florida became home base. Sanjeev and his family now travel six to seven months of the year, mainly South East Asia, where Hua Hin is their base. When he has spare time, Sanjeev still manages some of his investment companies in a hands off manner.

ethnicities. But the MOST important thing I do before my trips is to make friends with locals in that country. In the past, if I have met someone from a country I had not been to, I always asked lots of questions. Social media has made it simpler to develop friendships. Now I usually make friends and learn that way. Invariably I am picked up at the airport by locals. My dinners and lunches are most often with locals as well, in their homes or at a restaurant. Enjoying the nightlife offers a different perspective. It is possible to meet owners, expats and other travelers. It has its own charm because of the exchange of interesting stories that everyone has to offer. WHAT DO YOU ALWAYS TAKE WITH YOU? I happy to travel around the world with my stuff in a small sling bag hanging off my back. It has everything I need for different occasions. My golf clothes, semi-formal evening clothes, exercise and swimming gear. Of course, electronics for work and reading eBooks. Cigars to enjoy with newly made friends. Finally, some paperwork that can serve as credentials, in case I get stuck in a difficult situation.

HOW DID YOU BECOME USA’S LARGST PASSPORT HOLDER? Frequent travelling meant that my passport used to fill up quickly. At times I faced real difficulties such as not having enough time to apply for a new passport. I tackled this problem from two different angles. Firstly, to find a way to reduce the amount of stamps needed at the border of different countries. We became the first family in the USA to obtain a global entry permit. This means no more standing in line at airports; rather going through a scanner without having our passports stamped. In Singapore, I got an EP, and an OCI in India, all to avoid filling up visa pages. Secondly I requested a bigger passport. After several requests and explainations, they gave me a 104 page passport. And after that every passport was the same. WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT TRAVELLING? I feel happy when I can help others. There is no better feeling then being able to help at a time when people need it the most. My wife Sunita and my two sons share the same values. When our sons were growing up, on every available occasion, we used to travel and volunteer for one or two weeks. Our volunteering included orphanage work at mother Theresa’s centers, sustainability training, environmental awareness, teaching at schools, taking care of kids with their educational needs, medical help in villages and more. Every time we find a young ambitious person willing to try their hand at entrepreneurship, we guide them and provide them with the initial funding to fulfill their dreams. There have been 50 such cases we have supported including a tailor shop, buying a motorcycle, starting a mango farm, a bakery shop and a boutique of crafts. This can mean a huge turn in their life circumstances. My entire family participates in helping and guiding those who need assistance; with a special emphasis on sending underprivileged children to a good school. WHAT DO YOU RESEARCH BEFORE YOU TRAVEL? Is reading research when it is part of someone’s DNA? There is little research for me when heading off to new country. Due to my lifelong reading habits 50% of the places are actually already known to me. Then, prior to travelling to a new place, I love to read and gather knowledge about the history of the country, the region, their people, culture, traditions and

WHICH IS YOUR FAVORITE COUNTRY? WHY? There are many places good for living and then there are many places good for visiting. Thailand is one of these unique places which is good for living as well for visiting. It is an optimal blend of modern infrastructure and traditional values and also provides great value for money. Thailand has almost everything a person with a refined taste would like to enjoy. Mountainous regions to warm oceans. Glamorous cities to historic countryside. Modernity mixed with ancient traditions. Outdoor adventure sports and golf. Expats from all over the world. And, in spite of many natural calamities and a lack of financial resources, people are always smiling and welcoming in the Land of Smiles. T r av e l


However, I had always been a reader which kept my curiosity ignited. Once we had kids we felt it was our obligation to them, and to the future generation, that we showed them the real world. Once I had the resources it was a natural choice for me to travel with my family. Where there is a will there is a way! Even though we both were working and the kids were in school, we would find ways to consolidate a few days and dedicate those days to traveling. Sometimes with our extended family as well (parents and sister). We kept an eye on finding good deals at the off-peak times of the year. For example, winters in Iceland, Ireland and other places in Europe. Summers to India, Africa and other Asian places. In other words; there is no excuse not to travel. There is no reason to deprive kids of the experiences of faraway lands, different cuisines, rich cultural traditions, valuable historical places, diverse people and languages. It is not the lack of means, rather it is the lack of will, or the lack of adventurous spirit which can come in the way to experiencing the real world WHAT IS YOUR PHILOSOPHY IN LIFE? Simplicity is the key. No one ever won a noble prize for being complicated. Whenever humanly possible, spend time, energy, and resources on the riches of simple experiences in life and not on the possessions. For the best experiences, get involved with locals during your travels. No one wants to know or cares about your possessions but people do want to discuss and exchange cultural aspects of life and knowledge. And do share these “Rich experiences” with others. As they say, “Sharing is Caring”

Its geography is conducive to travels due to the fact that one can reach as many as 30 countries on a short one to six-hour flight. WHAT PLACE HAS MOVED YOU THE MOST? More than one place! Various African countries across the entire continent. It is startling to witness the harmony between the people (of different tribes) and their animals. In spite of the poverty and lack of resources the people are helpful and caring towards each other and travelers. It is very common for people to open their doors to strangers without hesitation. Even though history has shown that foreigners invade and rule their countries, they continue to trust foreigners and be kind to them. This restores my faith in humanity. The people of Burma all over, especially in small towns, are extremely innocent and trusting. People in the South of Thailand, which has relatively less tourism, are very welcoming and friendly. The countryside in Indonesia, including the islands, are friendly and welcoming towards others. Everywhere we have been in Japan people have shown humility and compassion towards others. In the smaller towns of China people are always very careful to provide comfort and food for foreigners. HAVE YOU ALWAYS BEEN A TRAVELLER AND DO YOU THINK IT’S IMPORTANT? Coming from a small town in the remote Himalayas, I didn’t travel in a plane until I was 25 years old. Even though I had always liked adventure, and was curious about the world, there were limited means till I was in my late 30s.


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WHAT IS NEXT? Travelling to the unexplored places during 2017: - Madagascar’s unexplored forests to learn about their most unique fauna and flora - North Sudan’s pyramids that are deemed to be more ancient than Egypt’s - East Timor to learn about the upcoming opening of the country to outsiders - Papua New Guinea to get closer look at the cultural treasures of the least known tribal cultures - Swaziland to get a firsthand experience of their rituals of bride and groom matching ceremonies - Lake Malawi’s coastal towns - Countryside in Mozambique using public transport far away from cities - Many autonomous regions of China including Urumqi - Mount Everest base camp trek - Mount Fuji climb - Mount Edna climb - Experience living in the Tulli Houses in Puglia, Southern Italy

"Be the energy you want to attract "

YOGA BY NITI STUDIO OPENING IN MAY 39/6 Moo 1, Rawai, Ampur Mueng, Phuket Contact : (+66) 619171415 Email:


BEACH THERAPY 20 minutes north of Phuket airport on the pristine sands of Natai Beach is the Akyra Beach Club. It is a sunny spot where the hip movers and sand shakers come to play and slay By Lilly Carrion Photographed By Adriano Trapani


1 1. THE RESORT Akyra Beach Club Phuket is comprised of 42 stylish rooms and suites, plus 16 elegant villas, all set amid inspiring natural surroundings of Natai Beach. The appealing facilities include beachfront massage, salas and a fully equipped fitness center. The Akyra family offers an enchanting escape full of hip happenings and stylish surprises. The resort’s integrated Club Akyra is where you’ll want to head for après-beach fixes served by cool poolsters and sand bunnies. 2. SEA VIEW VILLA Spacious and facing a welcoming swimming pool on the beachfront overlooking the spectacular view of the Andaman Sea. The sea view villas are a perfect getaway with an oversized king bed along, luxurious amenities and a porch hammock. Waking up to the spectacular view of sunrise from our bedroom was an incredible experience.


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3. Akyra Club The social heart of the beach where cushioned cabanas and loungers are sprinkled around the beachfront pool and plenty of nooks to sunbathe and socialize. Live in-house and visiting DJs make this club the essence of what a real beach club is... Live is the sunshine, swim in the sea and dance with a cocktail on your to truly relax and unwind


4. Restaurants Start the day right at Akyra Beach Club’s Upper Deck, which serves up panoramic sea views to enhance the flavours of a classic breakfast. The stylish grill and bar at CLUB Akyra serves great comfort cuisine and elaborate dishes sourced from the land and sea: think juicy steaks or seafood and top-heavy wood-fired pizzas.

6. The beach Lovely deserted long beach, with beautiful sunsets. Unspoiled and quiet, free from the usual trade you would find along beaches in Phuket. 5. The Ice Cream Boutique Craving for some sweet treats to cure the tropical heat of the Andaman coast during your stay at Akyra Beach Club Phuket? This isn’t such a bad idea. At Akyra Ice-cream Boutique, they serve delicious Manzoni Italian ice-cream, with a great selection of flavors to choose from. TIP: From 02.00 PM to 03.00 PM, 1 scoop per person is FREE!



6 Verdict This is a place to holiday rather than to travel. If you’re recovering from an exhausting working year or week, or you’ve got family in tow, or just fancy some European-style comfort on an Thai beach, then this is your best bet on Phuket.




For who ? Whether it’s a sultry tropical stay for two, a break from the city, or a friend’s escape to paradise, Akyra Beach Club Phuket ticks all the beachside boxes.


How much? Starting from 7000 THB/ night

My Personal Favorite The endless, sandy beach is right on your doorstep and this is priceless!

Akyra BEACH CLUB PHUKET 32/7 Moo 5, Kokkloi, Takua Thung Phang Nga, Thailand 82140 +66 (0) 7 659 2500

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MARC S ARK Lilly Carrion meets house boat builder e xtr aordinaire, M ar c Chapus, to find out a bit more about his incredible floating home. By Lilly Carrion Photographed By Adriano Trapani

arc came to Phuket 7 years ago on a visit from New Caledonia. He tells me: “I had a project to building catamarans so I was visiting different boat builders in many Asian countries. In Thailand I met Roger Diggelman, the owner of Asia Catamarans, and I immediately liked him. So, I decided to build a catamaran in Phuket. It took us nearly 2 years to build it. During this time, I fell in love with Phuket and decided to settle down here. I left France 18 years ago to sail around the world. So now I have spent more than of the half of my adult life abroad. My background is in nautical engineering and I have been a sailor since childhood. I first had the idea of building my own house boat during one of my trips around the Pacific Ocean. I saw the Polynesian house boats in Tahiti which are built with double ‘pirogue’ made of fibreglass. They are rented for overnight trips and parties. When I experienced a trip I really enjoyed it. It is another way to appreciate being on the sea in a very relaxed way.


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The tropical weather conditions are pretty much same as Thailand. So, I designed a boat and the house on top. I decided to make the hulls from an existing mould made for the construction of powerboats. I was sure that way that the structure would be secure, buoyant and have a good marine attitude. The hulls are made of polyester resign and fibreglass, and joined with aluminium cross beams. The platform is made of marine plywood and fibreglass. The house on top is made of 100% bamboo. I designed the house keeping in mind comfort, security and longevity. The bamboo sticks are treated with special and secret mix of varnish, paint and pesticide. I learned a lot about bamboo, it is a fantastic building material. But the best thing is to make a dream come true. I call her “Thai Itti.” The name is a mix between Thailand and Tahiti. Itti means power in Thai. Thai Power! I tried to make her look as Thai as possible. But the marine environment is very special and requires some particular designs. Especially for the roof. I had to find a way to reduce the windage so I include water tanks, solar cell energy, marine toilets and mooring equipment. Because we love the sea view, I made some very big windows, an open plan saloon and a kitchen.

It took about six months to build. That was very slow because I didn’t have much free time (I had to run a boat charter company at the same time). I worked with Latitude 8 Shipyard to build the hulls and the platform and with a Bamboo shop from Chalong for the house. It was a pleasure, and everybody was excited to do something unique and fun. To move the house boat we will use a big dinghy with 40hp engine. We can only do it when there is no wind and a flat sea. The plan is to find some nice anchorages around Phuket coast, and move the house boat from one to an other always in a protected and calm mooring. She has just been completed, but soon I will try mooring her in between Rawai beach and Koh Lon. I will spend a few days and nights on board with the powerful feeling of freedom and quietude. I don’t know if I will rent her to tourists yet. First it will be for family and friends, we will try it and then we will see. I think that creating is something we all have deep inside us. What ever the result is, it makes you feel alive.

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DREAM FASTER THE OTHER WAY TO VISIT PHUKET The world is our playground… It’s time to play! By Lilly Carrion



1. James bond Island - Phang Nga Bay



2. Koh rong - Near Koh Lanta

3 Call us +66 (0) 612 480 285 +66 (0) 924 419 232


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3. Coral Island - Near Phuket (Koh Hae)


I spend a full day with Speed Boat Xperience and theirprofessional teamsharing an exceptional experience. With their private charter service combining luxury, comfort and safety, it wasn’t long before we took off on a remarkable journey to discover another Phuket, the hidden Phuket, the unknown, unique and unexpected Phuket ... From this island of puzzles and a thousand faces, Idiscovered the most enchanting corners, away from beaten paths and far from standard and overcrowded circuits.



5 5. Koh Pak Bia - Krabi

5 With the fastest speedboat in Phuket, Speedboat Xperience are true ocean riders combining flexibility and maneuverability with advanced comfort and unrivalled equipment, delivering bespoke excursions 4

which combine charm, dreams and pleasures of heavenly places with sweet fragrances of adventure.

4. Koh Poda, koh Chicken - Krabi

I came back with unforgettable memories to share, full of colors, flavors and wonderful scents... T r av e l


Chhatrasagar The Tented Camp on a Dam Desig n is defined as the purp ose , pl an n ing , or intention that e x i s t s or is tho ught to e xist behind a n a ct ion, fact, or m aterial obje ct. By Lakshimi Ramaswami

riving in off the highway, led us through a scrub forest, not very green being so close to a large Desert. We parked below some old, beautiful trees, no signs of any reception or desk…in fact we could see a few cars under the large trees but nothing more. Then walked down one person, with a welcome and cold water. We walked up along a path, shaded by wild trees…and it meandered onto the Deck, where we were warmly greeted by the owners. Awe inspiring it indeed is, to see the massive lake, and as you step closer to the edge of the aged brick Terrace, you realise this is the Retaining Wall. The clear blue expanse, the dull green scrub grassland beyond, the breeze messing your hair and clothes, the Sun glinting off the water and the two massive canvas tents with flapping edges on either size…..Camp Chhatrasagar. The walk at the entrance, is planned to underwhelm…to allow the first view to be memorable. Chhatrasagar(the reservoir) is indeed the result of a conscious design, as is Camp Chhatrasagar (the luxury tented resort). Successful Design permits one step cohesively to the next…elevating the Design Experience. This clearly is one of the hallmarks at CampChhatrasagar. In the late 19th century, a forefather, had the vision to create a water reservoir that harvested the meagre rain and the will to see it through. He might have appeared a tad quixotic. Deserts are some of the most challenging places to inhabit, and water in a desert, so precious. Today his Design is alive perched at the edge of the Thar Desert, ably supporting all the villages around having birthed an ecosystem that thrives off it. The hundred and twenty seven year old dam quite remarkably houses the result of the Design of his future generations. It is indeed fortuitous to be the bearer of such a rich legacy, estate and home and abundant flora and fauna, generously dotted with wildlifethat lives in the receptacle of Nature, fashioned generously by a visionary forefather.


Art T a v&e lC u l t u r e

Camp Chhatrasagar stands as the perfect jewel on the on the crown, on the 129 year old wide brick retaining wall, leading up to some hills in the background, with 13 tents, 2 higher up boasting 360 degree views. An eye for perfection and loving attention to detail is obvious right from the huge Lounge tent, arranged with tasteful aged furniture and large telescopes. I particularly loved the geometry of the white canvasbig top. The patina, grace and charm of an age gone by, surrounded by the dancing ivory edges of the huge tent take you in. Separating this large tent from the Canteen Tent is the Terrace, with the Bar…from which we enjoyed the Sunset, with a G and T. A fire blazing intensely warming the chilly evening air.*pic So distracted was I, by the surreal silence, the endless vista, the darkening sky, the leaping flames, digging my palms into my jacket, relishing the delicious “pakoras” and “tandoori” chicken and the distant chattering of night fowl. And the stars, definitely brighter and bigger to my city dweller eyes laid out like diamonds. I looked beyond the Lounge tent to see row upon row of candles lovingly edging the path onto the tents. No electric lights at all along the path. That moment remains poignantly suspended in my mind as one of true beauty. The gently lit quiet path was poetry. Stepping into the massive tent, it is luxurious and lavishly proportioned with a huge comfortable bed, seating and a perfectly appointed bathroom finished in local stone. It does feel like stepping into the past. The layered tents are tethered onto poles all round. It’s a fine balance of volume, texture and joints. One can sit outside the tent and gaze onto the grassy wetlands and enjoy the tranquility and changing light. That is blissful. T r av e l


The bathroom, is a revelation, rough local slate slabs, an ornate wood basin counter and large enough to house a kitchen. It spans the width of the tent. With just a curtain at the doorway, it offers the luxury and privacy of a real bathroom, unlike at a Camp. Again, a conscious choice to be rustic and luxurious simultaneously…and it succeeds. God, is in the details said legendary architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. At Chhatrasagar you see it in the traditional Rajasthani motifs block printed onto the interior of the 11 Tent rooms, each unique. In the choice of bar table,In the beds turned down for the night, with a hot water bottle tucked in, duly covered in a Rajasthani cotton block printed cover. In the rose petals scattered in the Bathroom. In the perfect pigeon blood ruby color of the pomegranate served with honey and perfect homemade yoghurt and honey at breakfast. It is apparent in the complete lack of ostentation yet, a sense of heightened luxury using locally sourced materials. No fancy lighting scheme on the Terrace….a conscious choice to let the fiery flames add the drama every evening. No extravagant seating on the Terrace either, armchairs like they had on the verandahs in most of our Grandparents’ homes. The bar counter- literally on a wooden limb is a conversation piece; the unobtrusive yet prompt service, the warm hosts talking of the story of the land and water…nothing detracts from the experience, only heightens it. Across the water body is an unspoiled wetland, allowed to grow wild, preserving much of the flora and fauna…several small animals and over 200 species of birds inhabit it. Telescopes are set up and walking tours

organized through this…a much beloved Back to Nature activity. The deliberate choice to let the wetlands grow wild, is again Design. That it adds tremendous value to the visit experience and forms an endless vista is magical. Sitting outside my tent with my binoculars, I spotted a spectacular peacock. As I sipped my ‘chai’, ruminating in the quiet off the lake and the floating horizon, beyond the vast wetland, seemed to beckon. A moment of quiet reflection. Another interesting visit is to see the farms and the villages that live around the lake. Simple, hardworking folk, living off the land, respecting the land and all it gives them. A lifestyle similar to that of their ancestors. Colorful turbans, beautiful long skirts, a long flowing fabric shading their eyes from the sun, the rural folk work hard and are in harmony with Nature. How water is managed is a hallmark of city planning and testifies the intent of the governing body. Deserts are some of the most challenging places to inhabit and water in a desert so precious. The finest tribute to the vision of their great grandfather Thakur Chhatra Singh was to establish the Chhatrarsagar Tented Camp. The 11 tents situated on the hundred and twenty nine year old Retaining wall, with 2 tents a bit higher up, along with the 2 larger tents for Meals and the Lounge comprise Camp Chhatrasagar. I had the privilege to visit last year, and it more than lived up to the story. It was a revelation in terms of scale and material…and what struck me was the sheer simplicity of it all. It was exactly as promised, and so much more.



innovativ e pr ofessiona l s ge t toge t he r onc e a ga in to cr eate a ne w and e xc i t ing fa shion shoot for I nsider A si a M agaz ine .

Summer Breeze I n side r A si a M a g a z ine Col l a b or at ion By Lisa Allen Photography by Adriano Trapani

or this collaboration we had been generously given stunning swimwear from Kaanda Beach Life. The gorgeous dresses and accessories were from Dalaya Store and the groovy inflatable props by La Franchise. The date had been set, the model assigned and we were ready to go! A couple of days before the shoot we brainstormed ideas and the team then discussed them over social media. I loved the idea of recreating a vintage swimwear look with post war designs. Reminiscent the old Esther Williams film, Million Dollar Mermaid. The challenge was then to source a swimming cap of that era. I quickly realised the best option was to make one myself. The theme complemented the look and style of the swimwear by Kaanda Beach Life. After a brief search in a local department store, I managed to locate a pink fabric ladies swim hat. I bought some artificial flowers, then got to designing. I created a rather lovely floral swimming cap, if I do say so myself!


H e a lt h a nd Be a u t y

Model : Maria Prikhodko

After a few days of planning, sewing and designing we met at the Café Del Mar in Kamala. Initially it was a bright sunny morning, we unpacked our equipment and I got to work on our model Maria. The scene was to be the inviting pool utilising one of the funky inflatables provided by La Franchise as a prop. It was not long however and heavy storm clouds started gathering. During a quick changeover, the clouds darkened, so I quickly adjusted Marias’s look, and we decided to shoot under cover. The heavens opened which forced us to re-evaluate our shooting schedule. However, the energy of the shoot wasn’t interrupted by the heavy downpour, because we had the upbeat support of the resident DJ at Café Del Mar. In total we shot for about 9 hours, from light to dark, in between rain and power cuts, under cover, waiting patiently for the perfect conditions and shooting when there was a window of opportunity. In the end seven different locations were used for the photo shoot around the fantastic Café Del Mar. Despite the unexpected weather conditions, we all had positive musical vibes flowing throughout the day and the hot tea and coffee provided definitely helped too!


Summer Makeup Tip s by L i s a Al l e n One of the most common questions I get asked is, ‘How can I make my makeup last and stay on in this heat and humidity?’


1. Use an oil free or gel based moisturiser with sun protection. 2. Use a face primer, this will create a smooth base and extend the longevity of your makeup. 3. Lightly conceal required areas. 4. Apply an oil free foundation or tinted moisturiser. 5. Powder your T-Zone area. 6. Apply a powder based blush as this will last better in the humidity. 7. Comb through and shape brows with a wax based brow product. Apply a brow setting gel. 8. Apply eye primer and then your desired eye shadow. Add waterproof liner and mascara. 9. Opt for a matte or sheer lip colour; this will stay in place more than a gloss. 10. Spray your face lightly with a makeup setting spray. 11. For touch ups during the day use makeup blotting paper.


BangTao Beach, Phuket


SPA AAAH! Massage is an art of a touch

The N ai H a r n By Lilly Carrion

he Nai Harn hotel spa is all about spreading the wisdom and traditions of Thai massage and healing. Wellness here is glamourous and fresh with indulgences that last all day. All custom Spa Voyages are inspired by the elements: the purity of the Andaman, the softness of a gentle sea breeze, the warm radiance of the sun and the nurturing earth. I start my two-hour treatment with a salt coconut peel followed by a divine Pearly Shells signature massage. The professional therapists and the music take me far away; the sea breeze offers sweet fragrances of frangipani.

The therapist places special heated sea shells on key muscles of my body to provide deep, penetrating, relaxation and therapy. She uses other heated shells to massage the rest of your body in a warm, flowing massage! Unlike hot stones, the texture of the shells provides a very mild exfoliation and incredible sensations! A unique, fun, and therapeutic experience. I left completely relaxed, with a smooth skin and full of positive vibes … It was a feel good experience! The Nai Harn 23/3 Moo 1, Vises Road, Rawai, Muang District, Phuket 83130 Thailand Tel: +66 7638 0200-10



H e a lt h a nd Be a u t y


source of Happiness s i e r u t a N

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YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT If you do not know what you eat, how can you know who you are ? Annebe van Dijk is based in Bangkok. She is a nutritionist who studied health and orthomoleculair nutrition. She shares her passion for healthy eating and healing on Anna runs workshops and consultations on healthy diet and lifestyle. By Annebe van Dijk

am not a big sugar lover and I can behave myself… well most of the time. But over the years, like all of my friends, I grew a little tummy. Just eating normally (and yes with an occasional transgression and certainly that glass of wine). The regular refrain of the day with girlfriends became: “Why can’t we close our old jeans”. Well girlfriends, I understand now that our sugar addiction has nothing to do with willpower or lack of perseverance. Our bodies are well-programmed to crave sugar (in combination with fats and salts). Have you noticed how many products in the supermarkets are fueled with this highly addictive combination? Michael Moss understands a vital and terrifying truth in his best selling book ‘Salt, Sugar, Fat’. He describes how the food giants direct us to that seventh heaven feeling. We are not only eating fast food when we succumb to the siren song of these addictive ingredients. We are also fundamentally changing our lives - and the world around us.” I would like to share something with you to understand how this cycle works. And if you understand this, it it will be easier to be smarter about sugar!

addictive. Two other things that are going on: nowadays there is no scarcity and the food giants know how to sell their addictive products to us. Unfortunately, the power of supermarket food suppliers is vastly underrated. We have to understand what we eat in order to break this damaging circle. Here we go with a bit technical basic info of what these supermarket products do to our body. They all contain (hidden) sugars (carbohydrates). The Glycemic load (GL) is a measure that takes into account the amount of carbohydrate in a portion of food together with how quickly it raises blood glucose levels. A high GL means a peak in blood glucose levels, something that can have a disastrous effect on our health if it continuously stays high. In other words, we should keep our glucose levels as constant as possible! There are lists with this GL for most foods (not on the packet but on google!) We are eating food, with product information and we still don’t know what exactly is doing to us. A simple rule: Basically all the processed food that is for sale in the supermarket and that you need scissors to open contains a higher GL. A smart way to eat these foods with high GL without raising our blood glucose with a huge peak is to combine these with healthy (omega 3 fats), (plant) proteins and our big friend: fibers! High: We’re talking foods like white bread, processed breakfast cereals, white rice, pretzels, potato chips, cookies and and cakes. Choose low glycemic-index foods instead, like vegetables, whole grains, sweet potatoes, and most fruit. But how do we prepare a healthy low GL meal everyday in when most people feel they already do not have enough hours in the day. We buy ready-made packs, bags and trays from the supermarket to make life easier and save time. With their strong taste explosion they mostly contain the hidden sugars that we have to avoid. What is healthy on the shelf in the supermarket? And how does your daily diet boost the nutrients for you and your family?

In most western countries, nature gives us seasonal sugars. When the sun is shining we enjoy the abundance of fruit and fresh greens. In fall we harvest apples, beets, tubors, carrots and potatoes. Nature gives us sugars, carbs and starch to prepare us with a little fat layer to protect us. Our body then needs to produce insulin. As long as there is insulin circulating in your blood, you are not able to burn fat. Traditionally a life saver because food in the winter was scarce. So nature makes us crave sugar as it is an essential survival mechanism of our body. So we are programmed to like sugar! Eating sweet food (sugars and white carbohydrates) leads our brains to produce the happiness hormone dopamine. And asks for more because we like this feeling. This is what makes some food so


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Those who can’t a cook have to be creative and smart! We have to buy more fresh ingredients and stay away from the ready made food on the shelves. It is a matter of combining carbs, healthy (omega 3) fats, proteins and fibers! If you eat a slice of bread with jam (both high GL), this food mash can easily pass from your stomach to your intestines resulting in a peak of glucose in your blood. If there are fats or proteins or fibers in your stomach as well, another part of your digestive system has to work hard causing a delay in processing your food so it stays longer in your stomach with 2 very positive effects: 1) It releases in small batches causing no peaks in glucose levels and 2) you feel a sense satiety of longer because your tummy is full. So a beautiful slice of whole wheat bread with avocado, or some slices of salmon or a hard boiled egg with some coconut oil spread is better for your blood sugar levels than a slice of bread with only some slices of tomatoes and cucumber. Don’t be afraid of good fats as we need them to neutralize the sugars (read carbohydrates) we eat. So next time you go shopping, think about what to take home! Act smart and know what you put in your trolley, your new diet will make you happy and healthy!!




Kaanda Beach Life By Lilly Carrion

Lilly Carrion talks to Katarina BonÊr founder of Kaanda Beach Life, a company setting Thailand’s beaches ablaze with their stunning swimwear, with retail outlets in 12 department stores in Thailand as well as several five star resorts. Her flagship store is in Boat Avenue in Cherng Talay in Phuket. 84

Katarina Bonér founder of Kaanda Beach Life atarina Bonér grew up in Sweden near Stockholm. She tells me: “We left Sweden in 2009. My husband was ready to leave the hotel industry and retire. But I was not ready to slow down. It was entirely my husband’s choice to move to Phuket. It took me few months to adjust but we decided to make our extended vacation into our new home project…”

“It is important to be kind. If you are good to others; you feel good about yourself. And then the circle starts over. Good, kind, feel good, love, reboot.” Katarina Bonér

I wonder if Thailand has changed her and she replies: “I would love to say I know the answer to that. But I am not sure… Life has changed me. But it’s difficult to know what part is due to Thailand… Perhaps I appreciate what we have more. Expat life separates us from our friends and family at home. So we have to open up to new types of friendships and respect and understand other cultures. That part is never over; always renewing our perspective. Katarina tells me she has always been interested in fashion & design: “But not fanatically. I had my own ideas and used a lot of vintage. My mum had amazing stuff from the 60’s. I love the lines from that decade. Tomboy styles with jeans, classy tweed or silky dress were all in my wardrobe. I didn’t follow trends particularly. I always loved shoes and boots. But also, architecture and design. I wanted to become an architect when growing up, either that or an actress.”

“Now if I was not designing swimwear I would you be doing something creative like writing or cooking. I worked 10 years in the TV industry so maybe I would be in producing. I am inspired by people with ideas, food, quiet time. A certain beauty in nature, colours and history.” Katarina started her business after ‘a lot of coincidences’. “I took about a year looking for what to focus on when friend visited from Sweden. Her husband was well connected in the lingerie and swimwear industry (after 30 years). We discussed the lack of well-fitting, high quality swimwear here in Thailand. He offered to introduce me to the owner of a factory and the brand Sunseeker Australia, in Hong Kong. I flew there thinking I would make my own brand and came home with their brand instead. I had some ideas on how to start and the beginning of my business plan. That was in June 2010. We launched in December in Central Department store, and in 2013. We, at last, launched our own brand. We had learnt a lot over time and built up a solid distribution network to establish it. Now we are on our fourth collection and exporting to several other countries.” To succeed at business in Thailand is a question of luck, timing, respect, hard work and having some really great Thai people on your side. And, of course, a great product. But without the former; it won’t matter.” When I ask Katarina about the ethos of her company she tells me: “We play by the rules and try to do things better. My team would say “camaraderie”; loyalty to the team. Forgiveness has to be there. I teach them same lesson as my husband taught his team; no one person is perfect, but a team can be.” I ask Katarina what her favourite Kaanda collection is so far and she laughs: “The one that is on the drawing table now for 2018! But honestly, I am very proud of the way we have developed to date, and to know all our efforts are working. It is not a set formula; it keeps evolving.



“Every starts early with the family and the school run. Hopefully I manage to squeeze in a workout, coffee, emails, (emails and emails!). Meetings with my team, a step back to think about the bigger picture, back into small things, looking at print designs and ignoring my husband’s call about dinner, home, hugs and wine.” “In swimwear my inspirations are print driven, as opposed to other brands which use microprints and solid colour. I tend to look at similar designers like Mara Hoffman. To me she is the leading print and swim designer. It’s all about the lines. Caffé is another brand I love because of its strong tropical colours and prints.” I ask what single life event changed Katarina and what did she learn. She confides: “Meeting my husband and allowing myself to be loved. Before that I had been in relationships that were a struggle. I was always insecure and did not feel loved. With him I know he loves me so I’m free. I can go on and be myself in every way, good or bad. The advice I would you give my younger self would be: ‘Don’t listen to haters. Follow your instinct. Take every opportunity you have to celebrate life.”

“It is important to be kind. If you are good to others; you feel good about yourself. And then the circle starts over. Good, kind, feel good, love, reboot.” Katarina’s Favorite Phuket Hotspots I’m not great with this as I’m not into partying so much… But I do like to go early to Catch, Café del Mar and loving the brunch at Trisara for example. And my favourite beach is the tiny one that only exists during low tide at Chock Dee, the Koh Kai Noi Island.



Katarina’s Top Tips for Choosing a Swimsuit? Fit and fabric first; so trying on is important. Enhance your particular beauty; if you have a slim waist, show it, if you have a nice round butt, show it. If your neckline or shoulders are gorgeous, show it. Secondly, make sure you have something to wear with it; caftan, cover up, hat, bag the whole look should work together…. Where are you Going in Holidays this Year? “This year unbelievably the Caribbean! And New York. Talk about inspiration!”



Summer Mood he AMBRE JOLIE story began in 2007. Enter Fine’s showroom and walk into her magic closet. Open your wardrobe in the morning and be inspired by the season’s amazing variety of beautiful colours and combinations. Dresses in comfortable light fabrics, soft and stretchy that breathe like a second skin. Use your mood to choose the magic of the day - to lighten, balance or lift you up!



Green - the color of balance, harmony and growth. Mangenta - Universal harmony and emotional balance. Let Fine at Ambre Jolie guide your spellbinding choices

French-Khmer Designer Dresses Facebook: AMBRE JOLIE Line ID: ambrejolie Phone: +66 (2) 7115981 Email:


EAST MEETS WEST JUNE FIFTH DESIGN BY BONNY SETHI T he e xquisite tradition of In dian saris, je wellery an d accessorie s mee t the modern a g e By Debbie Oakes

was born and raised in Jammu and Kashmir, India, and later moved to New Delhi. We came to Thailand in 1992, when my husband took up an assignment here. I have always been drawn to beautiful fabric, and quality clothing since childhood. I have designed my own clothes since I was a teenager, and made up my own colour combinations. My first showroom was in New Delhi. The brand was called ‘Bonny’s’ back then. I was a young, self trained novice, and it was on a very small scale. I try to create within a sensibility. Anything that appears outside of it, I cannot and don’t do. It doesn’t come to me. I am, as a designer, very inclined towards traditional textures, styles and embellishment. I like to stay true to a weave, a culture, and an art, thus rendering my creations somewhat rustic, and pricey. It takes people a while to justify that. But those those who do, don’t think twice.



To help my customers choose something special I encourage them to think of themselves first. Then I ask them to choose something that fits their age, personality, body type, and skin tone. I also urge them to specify the “don’ts” for their outfits, as opposed to the “dos,” which gives me the freedom of creativity to do my best for them. I firmly believe the secret to helping a woman to feel magical is that every woman must be able to recognize her inner beauty, and self worth. I cannot imagine any woman feeling magical trying to emulate people she is not, and styles that are totally contrary to who she is. I’m passionate about what I do. Period. But I have learnt that one cannot please everybody. My inspiration to design is the mind blowing history of traditional Indian culture and art!

A classic Italian Oven restaurant delivering a unique dining destination, offering the best of regional Italian cuisine. Specialised in wood fired pizza.

An outfit must always be age appropriate, body appropriate, and occasion appropriate. It must NEVER belong to a rat race. I believe my designs are simplistic, classic and evergreen.

Open Every day 28/75 Moo1, Saiyuan Road Rawai, Phuket 83130




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A FINE LINE Templeton Dean Interviewed by Lilly Carrion

empleton Dean is a Phuket based British designer. He tells me: “I haven’t always been a designer but but it was always there, somewhere inside. My mother was a model and I share a birthday with Yves Saint Laurent, so I think my destiny with fashion was set. I strive for quality and to be radical. I’m just a little ‘Brit’ different” he laughs. Dean graduated from The University of the Arts in London. “I studied mainly at The London College of Fashion, but I always consider myself to be uneducated. That way I retain a thirst for learning and a ruthless curiosity. My greatest teacher has been my mistakes, which I never look upon as negative things, they are positive learning tools.” “During my time at university and through internships, I came to understand that haute couture is a laboratory of dreams. It exists to help people either create an identity or to escape one. While filtering through past designers I stumbled across Sonia Delaunay, who said ‘The future of fashion lays in industrial couture’, or what we today call ready-to-wear. “Any good designer can be affiliated with a subculture. I tried to fit in with many groups, but I never felt comfortable. Then while doing some historical research for a project, I found my association. I am a ‘constructivist’.”



“The short-lived Constructivism movement grew out of Russia prior to the Revolution. It favoured art as an act of social change. Purposes. Their ideas were clearly laid out in a manifesto: ‘Don’t add ornaments to a dress. Rather the seams themselves, which are essential to the cut, give the dress form. So this is the foundation of my style: visually simple ready-to-wear clothing. Utilitarian beauty with subliminal psychology to move the eye around the body.” “My garments are different in the way they are constructed. Complex in their simplicity. I draft my block patterns by hand, and then grade my blocks in accordance to EU regulation for sizing, drafting, cutting and grading. All part of the craft of fashion. I am hands-on with all my staff and follow the garments from start to finish. I offer three lines. The one-off pieces, which come with a price, a modest range of Thai silk clothing in the constructivist style, and an inexpensive fun range of Thai rayon.” “Inspiration and ideas can come from anywhere. They begin as a spark and develop from there. It could be the roll of the waves and the shale on the beach, a line on a car, or shapes on the skyline. Inspiration for my current project came from a Sophia Loren movie. I break down what I see into its simplest form, reinterpret, and construct the garments for how we live and function today.” “I love working in the 4th dimension. It’s about the ability to interpret a one dimensional drawing, and take a flat two dimensional piece of fabric, cut and manipulate, structure and mold it around a three dimensional form, then make it move. The possibilities are endless.

I am passionate about it rectifying what I consider to be the moral failure of the fashion industry. Fashion has become more about business and less about art. I was once controlled by aristocracy, then by governments, then designers, magazine editors, photographers and models. Now it’s the shareholders who control fashion. There are already predictions that over the next 10 years, the U.K. is going to loose 10 million jobs to automation. These losses are just one country, but there are going to be global losses. And while governments in Europe are planning to pay people to stay at home, currently there are workers in Asia working between 12-14 hours a day for an average daily wage of 13 cents. No computer or robot can do what we do, and it will not be long before machinists take power and demand compensation for their value. Licentious corporations take my warnings as jest. They forget 1968 and 1984, when machinists went on strike bringing the industry to a halt and forcing the government to intervene. The results were not advantageous to corporations. We need to change our current manufacturing practices. I’m extremely passionate about the need for reform.” “Advertisers and marketers have made us into weapons of mass consumption. For years they have been persuading people to buy low quality products with high profit margins. Take time to look at smaller boutiques and independents before you go to the large chain stores. We strive to give a high quality product with a lower profit margin. Our clothes will last longer which means you have less need to throw away poor quality clothing. After plastics, fashion is the second biggest global polluter.” “At the moment I am a small design and manufacturing business, but I am planning on growth. I’m working through ideas to create an eco-factory. Using solar and wind turbines to power machinery. To reclaim the moisture from the air for dying and printing with natural dyes in order to save vast amounts of ground water, which many factories do. This leaves villages with dry wells. I want to build reed bed systems to clean water before giving it back to the environment. To use silk, wool, bamboo and tree bark to create sustainable fabrics. To offer workers fair wages for a fixed working week and a crèche so that mothers can work without having to rely on elderly relatives to supply childcare. These are just some ideas, but this would be the beginning of a chain of satellite factories around the globe, to help reduce the global footprint.

“The advice I give to people that are interested in developing their talent as a designer is to study! Study mathematics, art, anatomy, history, psychology, and politics (but don’t affiliate yourself to any party, instead, use design to subliminally express your opinions). Also, you must always remember it’s the woman wearing the dress that is important, not the label. Allow her to take your idea and make it individual to her with the use of hair, jewellery and shoes. My clients are not the type to grab the attentions of newspapers or to feature in magazines, they aspire to be associated with biographies.” The definition of success for me is understanding that people wear 20% of their wardrobe 80% of the time… but there is always that one occasion when you stand in front of your wardrobe and say: ‘I have nothing to wear’. But there is that one dress you turn to; knowing that it will serve the purpose. Knowing that you can rely on my pieces is my definition of success. “I think the greatest challenge for me is, changing people’s perceptions. People see me working with my staff, and working with a sewing machine and immediately assume I’m unskilled and poorly educated. That’s how people see anyone who works with a machine. So, in the beginning I had to decide whether to spend more time working on the strength of my image or on the strength of my craft. I chose the latter, which means it’s more of a challenge to get people to try the clothes on, but when they do, and they see themselves in the mirror for the first time; that smile is worth all the effort. “I have a kind of mantra: ‘The path to enlightenment is searching for the truth, but once you start believing in something you stop searching for the truth. Remember, the master has failed more times than the student has tried.”

I’m located at 14/6 Moo2, Wiset Road, Rawai, Phuket Contact details Phone number: +66(0)83 521 9993 - Templetondean











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TROPICAL VIBES EDITOR’S SELECTION OF THE COOLEST STUFF FROM LF OUTDOOR STORE IN THAILAND. Phuket: 49/44 & 49/45 Boat Avenue Bangkok: First Floor Racket Club Building Sukhmvit 49/11 CDC Crystal Design Center Building F, Shop F101, 1448/1 Pradit Manutham Rd., Bangkapi




Strength very loving and supporting home life, and by all accounts, it was pretty normal. Normal would take on a pretty diluted definition by my late twenties. The definition of normal for an addict or alcoholic is different from how most people define normal. For me normal was not doing any cocaine after 5am, because only real junkies use all the time. Not injecting also made me normal. Normal also meant that I would do anything possible to get my next score: manipulate, lie, cheat, beg, borrow and steal. I would do anything to protect my secret identity, because I didn’t want anyone to find out just how abnormal I really was. The only person I was hiding from was myself, by constantly rejecting and devaluing myself. Normal, also meant drinking until I would black out, and not remembering anything from the night before. Having to change the sheets a few times a week, because I would piss the bed was also normal. Are we normal if we are having conversations with bottles of booze? “You will not get me tonight.” And guess what. I’d wake up and find empty bottles littered throughout my bedroom. Is normal not having the love to look at ourselves in the mirror when brushing our teeth? Normal used to be crawling on the ground looking for a forgotten sliver of redemption, a speck of the insanity of my addiction to cocaine. The allure of the razor blade, soon took on a different meaning than for chopping the perfect line. The real puppet master controlling my strings, wasn’t the cocaine which was merely a solution to my problem; it was lack of love and acceptance for myself.

is a Healing Process Insider Asia columnist Darren Scherbain is a life coach, lifestyle presenter commentator mentor, recovered addict and 5x Ironman finisher. He has been teaching New Tricks in Asia since 2008. By Darren Scherbain

Photography by Adriano Trapani

o man for any considerable period can wear one face to himself and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be the true. Nathaniel Hawthorne Hi, I am Darren Scherbain. I’m an addict, an alcoholic, and a fallible human being. Just so we are on the same page lets make sure w note that recovery is an ongoing process. Over 5873 days; one day at a time. Expansion vs Constriction. I am Canadian by birth. That means that I basically grew up with a hockey stick in my hand. I was an active child and loved to spend hours out on the rink. Summers were spent working out on the farm, at camp, or getting dirty on my bike. From an early age I felt happiest when I was playing outside, and moving around (thankfully I have now found that sense of play again). I had a


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Sixteen years ago, I was in such a deep dark pit of hopelessness and despair that I sat with the razor blade and I wanted it all to end. I even got the direction of the cuts right. My saving grace was that I didn’t cut deep enough. My thought at the time was that I was such a worthless piece of shit that I couldn’t even get that right. I did get it right; my deepest scars are my greatest strength. There is a part of me that likes to think that some mechanism of self preservation kicked in and I stopped. Saw the light, so to speak, and came to my senses. Who in their right mind would admit that they are a result of their own thoughts? It’s a pretty huge hit for that precious sense of self.

In my early days of recovery; I was looking for a “magic pill” to relieve the pain as quickly and painlessly as possible. I was trying to think my way out of it. I was frustrated and felt stupid that I couldn’t get myself. Thinking the same thoughts over and over again and expecting different results is INSANITY. Those rigid intense feelings of shame and guilt were a difficult part of myself to accept and lead me to a sense of learned helplessness and ineptness. Let’s be honest, the cocaine and booze were a solution to my problem; a lack of self love. I hated the fact I was an addict and alcoholic and was very angry...”This shouldn’t be happening to me”. I saw it as something hideous that I had to get rid of. It was arrogant on my part to think I could just hate it away, shame the shit out of it, and bury it deeper in the darkness of my shadows. Underneath the anger, hatred and shame was a call for love. When you don’t have a lot of love for yourself you don’t need to keep smacking yourself with the anger and rejection stick. The true turning point for me was not when I had the razor blade in my hand. It was when I finally confronted my misguided relationship with myself. For the longest time I filtered my identity through my different masks. I couldn’t just be me. I lacked the strength to stand on my own two feet naked in front of you and most important MYSELF. My masks were my armour. They allowed me to play it safe, to play hide and seek with my insecurities and inadequacies. Once I let go of the protection it allowed me to love myself and not need anyone else’s permission to love myself. I had to stop rejecting myself. I needed to learn how to forgive myself and accept all of my beautiful messy scars through peeling away my different masks.

My Different Masks Addict / Victim Mask The addict mask allowed me to keep blaming my unhappiness, and being a reactive victim, on my circumstances. It allowed me to keep playing small and constantly settling for bread crumbs. It offered me the security and safety of settling for less so I could minimize my perceived pain. It’s so much easier repeating the same old narrative of why we are not ___ enough, than it is to step out and embrace uncertain and unfamiliar. People Pleaser Mask For the majority of my life I had a misguided sense of love. How to receive and give love. I had no idea how to love myself and this lead to some pretty maladapted ways of looking for love and some rigid rules. Love was something that I had to earn. That I had to somehow prove that I was loveable. I searched high and low for love, thinking that it was buried treasure hidden outside myself. I would use almost anything to fill a void that could only be filled by myself. I was afraid to say no and desperate for people to validate me. I was always trying to stay one step ahead of the game and do whatever it took to please people. But if I couldn’t love myself; how could someone else love me?” Ironman Mask The Ironman mask relived some of my guilt for the shame of my past. I was the Ironman and no longer the ex-coke head. I used this guilt to train harder and log more and more training hours. But guess what? It never alleviated my sense of shame. I was still trying to pay my debt and listening to that condemning and judging voice that would tell me that justice is equated with punishment. I had

lost al sense of balance in my life. It never had anything to do with a fantastic sport and lifestyle. It was me all about me. No matter how many finishers shirts I had in my closet, it never gave me that sense of validation that I was craving. Still chasing the dragon but this time with shaved legs and a tight aero position. Masculinity Mask As men we don’t want to show any chinks in our armour or any sign of vulnerability. It’s a sign of weakness. Stripping ourselves naked in uncertainty and embracing change can be paralyzing. Especially when you are white knuckling your only life line: self-doubt, fear, and who we think we should be. One step at a time and painstakingly slowly we can start to question if we have the strength? To ask: do we have what it takes? The true test of strength is reaching out and asking for help. Just because we have crossed that magical line in the sand and asked doesn’t mean it’s happy ever after. In fact; it’s brutal some days. I think that we have mislead ourselves into this notion that we don’t have to keep working on our “stuff”. A samurai sword goes through a process of extreme heat to extreme cold over 1300 times to free it from internal stress. It’s a process and at times it can feel painstakingly slow. You want the immediate gratification, the instant hit, the comic snap of the fingers…… Everything will be better when… Better than what? I’ll let you figure that out for yourself. Connect to Darren at

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Five Ways to Live a Full and Empowered life Change Maker. NLP Trainer. Motivational Speaker. Empowerment Coach and SuperMum By Rebecca Leiler iving the life you dream of is within your reach. Maybe this is a new concept; or maybe it’s something you have been thinking about for some time. What we all need are tools to help us move forward. Below are five ways that will help you to begin a journey to the life you have dreamed about. I encourage you to wire these into your day through consistent practice. Consistency is the key to success. It’s not the things you do once a year that are going to lead you to a spectacular life, it’s what you do consistently every single day.

1. Explore corners of the world you have never seen Nearly all of my most memorable experiences have been through life on the road. I have traveled globally as a fitness influencer, trainer, and lived in 5 different cities throughout Asia over the past 15 years. It has expanded me beyond words and has been my greatest teacher in personal development. Quite often I hear of people who haven’t left the comfort of their own city, state or country, and it blows my mind! My perception of Asia before traveling here, the way media had led me to believe it was like, was scary, dangerous and under-developed. We can take


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misleading information on as truth. It stops us, holds us back from living fully and experiencing a life filled with culture, compassion and understanding. Every place I have visited has altered my perceptions. This has opened me up to endless possibilities because I have been willing to let limitations go and create my life on my terms. One memory that is still so vivid was exploring PuCheefa. Sleeping in a mud hut, waking in the early hours of the morning and climbing to the Summit to witness an ocean of mist between Thailand and Laos on New Years Day. My best friend and I were the only foreigners yet we formed a bond and connection with the hundreds of Thais there, whilst witnessing the beauty of nature.

2. Have creative conversations When was the last time you had a deep, creative conversation with someone? Until recently, I don’t really remember my last. It was long ago; way too long. Over the past 8 weeks I have been devoting a lot of energy into conversations - deep, real, authentic conversations with the people in my life. We have explored topics on a spiritual level, which creates expansion, excitement, and are absolutely energizing. This is powerful!

Along the way we have become disconnected in the process of ‘staying connected’ through social media. It has created a separation, a breakdown of real true, honest and open conversation. To reignite your inner light, make the time to talk, really talk. pick up the phone, get on a video call or have a coffee with a friend and be really present with each other. Each week, make this a ‘must do’ in your diary. You will be filled with a richness and fulfillment words cannot describe. You will be tapping into your inner creativity through words and true emotion.

3. Private Reflection

5. Get curious

Replace fear of the unknown with curiosity! Curiosity is something we were incredible at as kids. Most of us have forgotten how to do something which used to be second nature. Can you remember how fun it was to try new things, explore new parts of the house and neighborhood, and to learn new games you had never played before? Oooh the excitement! One of the biggest things that stop us from traveling, exploring new ideas or a new way of living, is fear of the unknown.

Make time for you. Take time to switch off, disconnect from your devices, get out of the craziness of your surroundings and your mind. We keep ourselves busy in an attempt to escape from what is REALLY going on within. We try to ignore those little thoughts or ideas which pop up. Those thoughts about wanting something new in our life, a desire to travel to a country you have never been, improve your relationship, follow your passion, do something you have never done, whatever it is – it needs exploring. That requires space which can only come from the time you create to allow yourself to reflect.

When we focus on fear and uncertainty it stops us from experiencing the incredible beauty and excitement the world has to offer.

Consider what your future would look like without following these ideas? Then consider what your future will look like with these in your life? Enjoy this private reflection and exploration!

With a background in health, fitness, and wellness, Judy King has always been fascinated by the power of the mind and what leads individuals to do what they do. She is a Certified trainer of NLP, Time Line Therapy™ and Coaching, Master Practitioner of Hypnosis and she now delivers these transformative tools in Bangkok, empowering people to take control of their lives and to find positive meaning in everything they experience.

4. Eat clean & find the joy in food A healthy, strong and functional body begins with the fuel it receives. Your body is a high-powered machine that requires nothing but the best fuel to run efficiently and powerfully. You can double or triple the engine’s horsepower simply by changing the fuel. Now that’s a huge improvement! When you eat foods that are real, whole, pesticide free and full of high-density super nutrients your body will flourish, feel energized and free from inflammation. Cut the CRAP and eat the real deal! Flip the ‘old school’ food pyramid on its head and eat more of the good fats from good oils like olive, coconut, macadamia (no vegetable oils), butter (not margarine), animal fat, fish, nuts, seeds and avocado. Eat moderate protein and low carbohydrates (especially the starchy carbs and high sugar foods). Believe it or not, fats and protein are essential for your survival. Carbohydrates are not. Carbs are either used immediately for fuel or stored as fat.

Get curious about what you have never seen or experienced. It has opened my world up to incredible opportunities and a new empowered way of living, and I know it will do the same for you with the right mindset!

About the author:

Having achieved tremendous results in her own personal evolution through the practice of these powerful techniques, Judy provides one-to-one coaching sessions, seminars, NLP Practitioner and Master Practitioner accelerated trainings to assist people in unleashing the power of their minds, free their emotions, take action, heal and experience more of what each individual is capable of in all important areas of life.

Eat loads of vegetables and in particular the greens - some of my favorites when cooked the right way are beans, brussels sprouts (yes, most of us despised these as a child! But it’s all in your mind, try them again and you could be pleasantly surprised), asparagus, spinach and broccoli. Eat organic fruits and vegetables, grass-fed meat and wild fish. Meal time is also a perfect opportunity to switch off from everything else. Be present and thankful for the food and nutrients that support your survival, energy and ability to focus. You will be amazed at how this will positively impact your day! Truly experience the full flavor of your foods, the textures, tastes, and yumminess within each bite. When I am traveling around to different countries and experiencing different types of foods, I get a deep understanding and insight into the beautiful differences within food. This opens up more creativity and curiosity in my mind.

M i n d M at t e r s


THAIGER FM Interview with Tim Newton By Lilly Carrion

Have you always been a Journalist? I’ve been in radio, marketing, event and video production most of my working life. Fell into journalism as a newsreader in some of Melbourne’s big FM radio stations in the 1990s but it was always a side-job. Never trained as a journalist but learned the hard way by having to get more than 7,000 news bulletins to air on time, day after day, without stumbling over my words. I had some notoriously funny news-reading moments with the names of Czech Republic tennis players. What is your latest project and what inspired it? The Thaiger is modern media beast built around an FM radio station but reaching out into social media, online TV and options to expand into other areas around Thailand. After spending four years with Phuket’s biggest media group I got an excellent education about running media in Thailand and the contacts to make it work. I had to re-learn everything I knew about the media in the past as the whole marketing scene in Thailand is very different and, of course, just changing every day as technology and social media turn all the old rules about media and marketing upside-down. People love the name The Thaiger and, apart from being a ‘Thai’ company, we’re also passionate about the plight of Asia’s dwindling wild tigers and are supporters of the Save Wild Tigers group. he Thaiger is an FM station and social media outlet in Phuket. The Thaiger Bangkok and regional ‘Thaiger’ stations will be launched throughout 2017. Tim is the head of the Thaiger Team whose staff, technology and resources come from different countries at different times of the day. Where are you from and when and where are u based now? From Melbourne, Australia and now based in Phuket, Thailand for the past five years. I grew up next to the beach so living on an island with amazing beaches feels very familiar to me. I’ll be happy to live and working Thailand for the rest of my life. It’s not for everyone but it suits me. Do you like living there? Living in Phuket is like living in the United Nations, but with lots of tourists. Everyday you’ll work with and hear many world accents and learn something new about the many cultures that pass through this little rock in the Andaman Sea. As a local I know where to find a beach all to myself, amazing, cheap food and the right side streets to avoid the traffic. The island has multiple personalities - the crazy party town of Patong, the cultural mishmash of Phuket Town, the expat havens of Chalong and Rawai, the hills and jungles of the northern East coast and the beautiful beaches along the West coast. There’s also 32 islands around Phuket which have all their own personality and beauty. You’re never stuck for something to do in Phuket!


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People think a whole lot of clever people sat around a table with sheets of blank white paper for weeks coming up with the name ‘Thaiger’ but I simply woke up at 3am one morning with the name in my head. I designed the logo in approximately 20 seconds. Describe how your work has evolved and why Over the past ten years I’ve tried to embrace as much flexibility into my work as possible - being able to complete my work remotely and not necessarily sitting in the same office every day. This is partly because I have the concentration span of a an impatient kitten and partly because I get bored easily. So changing my workspace often and being able to work from a laptop anywhere, anytime is important for me. Luckily I can do just about all my work with a laptop, microphone, wi-fi and my amazingly patient Thai staff. Working remotely is a trend in so many businesses these day. The whole idea of an office, where staff come and work at set times five days a week, is a guarantee you’re not getting the best out of technological advances that have liberated us from our desks. I haven’t had a desk for 15 years. If you still have a desk in 2017 you’re doing your business wrong. Where do the ideas come from? I read a lot, I love catching up with smart people and hearing their ideas on everything. I binge on the latest news and try, as best I can, to keep immersed in the latest trends and toys that can make my life and work smarter, better and

more fun. So the ideas are really an adaption of all the cool things I’ve read about that might have inspired me that day. (I might add I haven’t read a newspaper in five years - by the time it’s printed it’s already yesterday’s news.) My team have to put up with me rolling through the door from time to time with a big grin declaring ‘I’ve got a great idea’. They generally tolerate all my crazy innovations and, I’m glad to say, are the beneficiaries of our thoroughly modern workplace and studios. What do you love about what you do? I love working for myself, number one. Whatever I’m doing I enjoy the freedom to work the hours I want, take a break whenever I want, work as hard as I want and be my own master. For now it’s in the media but whatever I do, it has to have flexibility. The main thing I love about what I do is ‘I love what I do!!’ If I’m not enjoying it I’ll find a way to make it more enjoyable or change directions quickly. Who or what has been your greatest inspiration and why? I have a few key inspirations in my life. Firstly it has to be my parents and an appreciation of the DNA passed onto me. My father was creative and my mother was a hard worker. My father was a bit of a dreamer. My mother was thoroughly practical. I seem to have inherited the best of both and ended up a creative hard worker who’s always dreaming. Secondly, and not just because I have used exclusively Apple computers for my professional work since the 80s, Steve Jobs’ inspiration as a creator and game-changer has taught me valuable lessons. Every time I get stuck trying to sort out a solution to, well anything, I remember the simplicity of Steve Jobs and his single button iPhone. There were smartphones before the iPhone but Steve Jobs brought it all down to one button. In radio, in particular, there are many bits of software, cables, mysterious ‘black boxes’ and technology that test your patience every singe day. We’ve set up The Thaiger to be a ‘one button’ system with simplicity built into everything we do. I sleep better at night that way.

Who inspired you the most in your life? Christopher Hitchens, the English (and then American) writer, raconteur and bon vivant is a daily inspiration. His cut-through-the-noise journalism, verbal artistry and fearless writing is always entertaining and honest. He can tear shreds off people and do it in such a delightful way they don’t know they’ve been insulted until it’s too late. We’re lucky enough to have a rich library of Christopher in full flight on thousands of Youtube clips ripping up sacred cows like Mother Teresa and the Catholic church with a combination of hard facts, a witty turn-of-phrase and a cheeky grin. His indulgences in alcohol and cigarettes brought an early end to one of our generation’s best wordsmiths. Where do you find inspiration? Many would say wandering along a deserted beach or watching a waterfall in a rain-forest. I’ll walk along the beach or take a short trek in the rain-forest but I’ll rush back to my friends, laptop and work. My work is about creating interesting media and I’m inspired by immersing myself in the ideas, news, toys and people that we use to make good radio every day. I love my work and find constant inspiration in it and the people I work with. Describe what your brand/concept is to you. How did it develop? We don’t have a slogan. Slogans tie you down and in the media you have to keep nimble, flexible and be willing to try things one day, persist if need be, and be prepared to throw them out and move on. Learn from your mistakes but be prepared to take risks and make more mistakes in the future. If you’re not making mistakes you’re not trying hard enough.


PHUKET ELEPHANT SANCTUARY “Take us elephant riding!” By Debbie Oakes

he often heard call of the visiting friends to Thailand. It is a tempting and accessible adventure, but one that should not be taken without understanding the darker side of elephant training, shows and riding. Asian elephants are endangered species. Experts believe there are less than 2000 wild elephants in Thailand. This is due to loss of habitat as well as Illegal capture and trade for use in the tourism industry. Wild elephants need to be brutally tamed before they can be ridden. The process of breaking their spirit is called Phajaan, or “the crush”. It involves confinement, solitude, beatings, bull hooks and sleep deprivation. The good news however is that there are ethical places to have an elephant experience. The Phuket Elephant Sanctuary is one such place. Tourists can see the animals in their natural habitat - no chains, prodding, tricks or abuse. Guests can watch elephants roam the grounds, forage, bathe in one of three fresh water lagoons, cover themselves in thick mud to cool down, socialise and enjoy being elephants. Visitors have the chance to get up close, to feed them watermelons, bananas, and pineapples and follow their huge footsteps into the forest for a mid-morning stroll amidst nature.


M i n d M at t e r s

Located literally off the beaten path as the only access is by a dirt road, and with virtually no fencing in sight, the 77 rais of Phuket Elephant Sanctuary land is part natural rainforest and part rubber plantation, and is adjacent to Khao Pra Thaew National Park in Paklok area in Phuket. At the heart of the Sanctuary is the Tree Top Reception & Observation Platform, where guests enjoy a panoramic view of the land and surrounding mountains, and can sit back and relax while watching elephants wander. Talk with the team of experts and learn about the plight of working elephants, their rescues, and how these lucky elephants are rehabilitated into forest life. ‘A Morning with the Elephants’ is available daily from 10am - 2pm and costs THB 3,000 per adult and THB 1,500 per child between 3-10 years. Entry is free for children under 3 years. Reservations can be made at http://www.phuketelephantsanctuary. org/book-here. Phuket Elephant Sanctuary also accepts donations from supporters worldwide at http://www.phuketelephantsanctuary. org/donate. As a non-profit organization, the Sanctuary relies on generous donations to give the rescued elephants a happy and healthy life, as the funding helps provide nutritious food, veterinary care, shelter and enrichment for the elephants. Phuket Elephant Sanctuary Co. Ltd, 111/116, Moo 8, Saunneramit 1, Thombol Paklok, Amphur Talang, Phuket, Thailand

M i n d M at t e r s


The Two Sides of Earning Rental Income For most r ea l estate in v e s tors , re n tal incom e com pr i se s a signif ic an t p ort ion of their e xpected pr ofi ts .

(The other main profit driver is price appreciation.) By George Mathew

herefore, properly managing rental income is critical. Unfortunately, many investors believe this to be a relatively simple task and do not realize that two very different, but complementary, skill sets are needed to optimize rental income: marketing and operations. On the marketing side, the goal is to find good tenants at the highest rental rate possible net of marketing expenses. Achieving this goal is typically best done



through a combination of traditional and online channels. In many markets, including much of Thailand, online rental portals are not yet well developed or have large followings. Most renters continue to search with the aid of established real estate agents, physical advertisements, or simply via wordof-mouth. Consequently, knowing the local rental market and having good connections is key.

As for the online world, costs and reach differ greatly. At one extreme, there are free listing sites which generate revenues through online ads. Although these free sites may have large user bases, it can often be difficult to make a listing stand out from the crowd and be noticed at all. Other listing sites charge a fee per listing or even a percentage of the rental rate. Regardless of which sites are chosen, wording and picture quality is extremely important. An experienced online real estate marketer knows which sites and advertising layouts are most effective. And then comes the operations side: the relatively mundane but vital job of properly maintaining rental units. The name of the game here is availability, attention to detail, and cost efficiency. Non-resident owners particularly have a problem offering availability and this can prove to be very costly. For example, a small water leak, if not quickly resolved, can turn into major water damage, which in turn can make a rental unit uninhabitable. Cost efficiency comes with scale. It’s difficult to be cost efficient when making purchases or service contracts for only one or even a few units. Partnering with other owners would help achieve scale, but coordinating among owners with different budgets and preferences can prove daunting.


The need for effective marketing, maintenance availability, and cost efficiency is what drives many property owners to hire professional property management. In fact, in most cases, property management companies more than pay for themselves through higher rental income (from effective marketing) and lower maintenance costs (from cost efficiency). In Phuket, a market with a high ratio of non-resident owners and strong rental demand, many owners have turned to companies such as Asia PHM ( to manage their units after having tried to do it themselves with dismal results. If you want invest in real estate, protect your rental income and hire a proper property management company.


P h o n e : +6 6(0 ) 8 8 876 24 94 Em a i l: i n f o @ p h u k eta dv i s o ry.c o m


By Lilly Carrion

illy Carrion meets Michaela & Martin Michalik, founders of Project Artisan. Originally from Slovakia, they came to Thailand when Martin was working in hospitality project management. The idea of Project Artisan came to life after eight years of living in Phuket. We felt that the island lacked a community oriented place with ‘soul’. There was nowhere that represented the diversity of modern Thailand (including the local expat community). We visited Bali and couldn’t really figure out why little inspiring Cafes that are there, are still missing in Phuket. We believe Thailand has all elements necessary including culture, history, food and climate for places like that to be created. And as a family we missed a place where you can spend time together or separately while engaging in creative activities. A venue dedicated to promoting local art and crafts and art in general… a community place with interesting workshops, healthy food and inspiring design.



Michaela & Martin Michalik

Martin’s passion is hospitality and mine has always been interior design and creating a grounding ambience. So, our concept was and is to create one place that embraces the culture of Thailand in more than one way. A place where you can relax, be inspired, eat, shop, work, learn something new, meet friends or chill on your own and enjoy life in general. We wanted to capture the essence of old Siam and modern Thailand and give people the opportunity to spend time in well balanced place for coffee, massage, lunch, workshop or just to buy a bread.

Project Artisan 53/17 Moo.6, Chengtalay, Talang District, Phuket Call : +66(0)93 790 9911 Email :



ROLLS ROYCE COOL MODERN LUXURY By Debbie Oakes talks to Pol Kulnarernatwanich about the iconic luxury brand.

olls-Royce Motor Cars has been in Thailand since 2009. However, the marque has been exclusively distributed by Millionaire Auto Sales and Services (Thailand) Co. Ltd in Thailand since 2012.


On 28 July 1998, BMW acquired the rights to the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars marque from Rolls-Royce Plc. This has allowed Rolls-Royce Motor Cars access to the latest in BMW Group Research & Development, engineering and design as well as unique technologies and production capability, combined with pinnacle craftsmanship. The takeover marked a modern technologically-driven renaissance for the 113-year old brand. With a brand-new manufacturing facility in Goodwood, West Sussex in the UK. Always with founders Charles Rolls and Henry Royce vision to create “the best car in the world”, at the forefront. The launch of the new Phantom in 2003 reinstated Rolls-Royce Motor Cars as a pinnacle purveyor of super-luxury goods. Since then new products, (Phantom variants, Ghost, Wraith and Dawn) have been introduced to the market, almost every year. This is a feat not easily achieved by a brand with a relatively small workforce producing hand-built super luxury goods.


Motor and Technology

BMW Group ownership ensures that Rolls-Royce Motor Cars remains a super luxury product. Every Rolls-Royce motor car features effortless technology: • Phantom VII –world’s largest aluminium spaceframe on a car • Phantom VIII will use a new spaceframe aluminium structure that will underpin all future Rolls-Royce models • Powerful V12 twin-turbo engines that provide effortless acceleration and ‘waftability’ • Four-corner air suspension systems that provide that signature ‘Magic Carpet Ride’ • Satellite-aided transmissions that read date from GPS systems to ensure the car is always in the perfect gear for the road ahead However, every car also remains true to the traditional Bespoke craftsmanship synonymous with Rolls-Royce: • One of the marque’s founding beliefs is that true luxury is deeply personal. Accordingly, Rolls-Royce continues to invest heavily in its Bespoke capabilities and craftsmanship. • Dedication to complete handcrafting of our cars means there is only

one robot in the manufacturing facility at the Home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood. This is for painting, and even then, it is purely for health and safety reasons • Virtually every Phantom, Ghost, Wraith and Dawn produced in 2016 contained specially-commissioned and unique Bespoke design elements, reaffirming Rolls-Royce as the world’s only truly handcrafted luxury motor car • The average time needed to produce a single Rolls-Royce motor car is at least two months. This means no rushing or hasty delivery. Just pure dedication to creating a perfect motor vehicle worthy of our customers


At Rolls-Royce Motor Cars we often say “Inspiration Is Everywhere”. Rolls-Royce’s unique interpretation of Bespoke comes without any catalog or manual – the only limit for custom-made possibilities is the customers’ imagination. • No request is left unexplored • There are 44,000 different paint hues and can even be custom-matched to your favourite lipstick • There are 20,000 different wood veneers – or even wood sourced from a customer’s estate • Spirit of Ecstasy can be etched with your favourite quote, or finished in gold The collaborative process begins with customers working with appointed Rolls-Royce representatives in a specially designed ‘Bespoke lounge’. In a relaxed, private setting they are given an insight into what can be achieved at Goodwood. The lounge is equipped with samples of the exquisite materials that furnish a Rolls-Royce motor car. Hand-building is a process that involves around 60 pairs of skilled, experienced hands in specialist departments including the Surface Finish Centre, Leathershop, Woodshop, and Test & Finish. The Artisans in Goodwood, the House of Rolls-Royce, often come from Bespoke industries such as Yachts, Furniture and now also from the fashion industry.

Goodwood is also home to design, R&D, sales and marketing, senior management and other corporate teams. From Goodwood, cars are dispatched to customers across six continents. For many however, part of the magic of ownership is taking delivery in person at the Home of Rolls-Royce itself in the dedicated Customer Studio.

The Sir Henry Royce Institute, the company’s academy for apprentices and centre for technical training, ensures its people have the skills and knowledge they need to build the best cars in the world.

Rolls-Royce has always keenly encouraged its customers to come and see for themselves where their car is designed and built; and meet the people responsible. In 2016, almost every motor car that emerged from the Home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood, was Bespoke. Hence, many, very personal and exciting projects are ongoing at any given point in time. Some examples: Phantom Serenity: the first time the Rolls-Royce Bespoke team experimented with silk as a fabric for an interior. Hand-dyed silk from the craftspeople of Suzhou then taken to one of Britain’s oldest mills to be hand-woven into the 10 metres of fabric that lines the interior of Serenity Phantom. Phantom Celestial: Celebrates the beauty of craftsmanship and is recognised as the most exclusive Bespoke Rolls-Royce ever. The first time Rolls-Royce Bespoke team adorned the door-cappings, centre console lid and partition wall with 446 diamonds, allprecisely hand-set. Ghost Elegance – Revealed in Geneva 2017, the Ghost Elegance is the first time the Rolls-Royce Bespoke team explored the use of precious stones in exterior paint, with 1,000 crushed diamonds infused onto the surface of the car. In addition, the car also features twin hand-painted coach lines, 21-inch wheels with matching red pinstripes, wool carpet and oak wood trim.

Motor and Technology



Thai ultra-luxury connoisseurs have a deep appreciation for the brand. So much so that Thailand is the only market in South East Asia to have three showrooms (Rama III, Siam Paragon and in Phuket). It is also interesting to note that increasingly, our cars are bought by younger entrepreneurs and captains of industry. That is the reason why we selected Thailand for the South East Asian premiere of Rolls-Royce Black Badge, the new, bolder and darker alter-ego of Rolls-Royce. It is not for us to brand ourselves with the taglines, but with “Cool, Modern Luxury”, we aim to ensure that the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Brand remains relevant to our customers which come from a broad spectrum of ages and backgrounds. This means ensuring our design, look and feel is contemporary and in some cases, just as with our Black Badge range of cars, even edgy.

No two Rolls-Royce customers in Thailand are the same. They range from from business leaders and actors to rock stars and sports personalities. These are th e sort of people that drive economies, supporting jobs and generating wealth. There is no doubt Rolls-Royce motor cars are for the select few. Exclusivity is key. But we do not regard our audience in monetary terms. Instead we acknowledge them as rightly deserving their own hard-earned successes with a truly personal super-luxury automobile.

The Wraith is for the discerning gentleman driver – the sleek fastback roofline and raked Pantheon grille exude poise and the promise of dynamism, while the coach doors and contemporary panelling in wood and leather indicate distinct super-luxury provenance. The Rolls-Royce Ghost is ultimate automotive sign of success for the business entrepreneur who creates wealth for his or her society. The car delivers ground breaking dynamism, capable of supercar performance (0-100km/h in 4.9 seconds) with its 563bhp, 780Nm twin-turbocharged V12 engine.

Inside, Ghost features exquisite materials and a luxury experience whilst offering class-leading technology and connectivity to today’s business person. It is a pinnacle product for and an oasis of calm and luxury in the otherwise hectic businesslife of its owner.

They are among the most successful entrepreneurs in the world and as such are strong characters in their own right.

The new Rolls-Royce Dawn promises a striking, seductive encounter like no other Rolls-Royce to date and begins a new age of open-top, super-luxury motoring. It is a beautiful new motor car that offers the most uncompromised open-top motoring experience in the world. The only proper, uncompromised full four-seater motor car in the luxury market, it will be the most social of super-luxury motor cars. For those who wish to bathe in the sunlight of the world’s most exclusive social hotspots.


Quite simply; it is the sexiest Rolls-Royce ever built.

The Phantom VIII is launching in 2018.

With the Wraith Black Badge, we have created the most powerful Rolls-Royce ever, with a twin-turbocharged V12 producing 624 bhp and 870Nm. With carefully considered, darker aesthetic accents, additional torque and recalibrated handling, the Wraith Black Badge is the also more dynamic and taut, a dramatic alter-ego to the Wraith. All in all, it is the ultimate expression of the Ultimate GT. The Wraith Black Badge speaks to a younger, more assertive customer, the rule breakers and the disruptors, those that work hard in the day but commit the same intensity to play once darkness falls. This spirit closely follows the audacity of pioneers like Muhammad Ali and our very own Charles Rolls, untrammelled by social convention and pushing every boundary to realise their personal vision. A truly Bespoke interpretation of character as only Rolls-Royce can do.


Rolls-Royce Motor Cars considers the Wraith the Ultimate GT, a sublime combination of Power, Style and Drama without compromising on the effortless driving experience Rolls-Royce is renowned for. It offers the most dynamic driving experience of any Rolls-Royce, without being hard or jarring; instead it still cossets all four of its occupants luxuriously with Rolls-Royce’s signature Magic Carpet Ride, while delivering a 0 – 100km/h acceleration time of just 4.6 seconds.

Motor and Technology


The Rolls-Royce Motor Cars brand identity does not differ from abroad. It is a global identity like our customer base. Many of our customers are jet-set citizens of the world; with more than one residence. The experience of a Rolls-Royce Motor Cars customer must not differ, no matter where he or she chooses to stay at any given point in time. In Thailand, the Ghost and Wraith continue to be best-selling Rolls-Royce models. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars are well-suited to Thailand. In the dense urban environment of Bangkok, the four-corner air suspension, double-laminated glass and powerful engine make for a serene cocoon, an ocean of calm in the middle of a bustling city. Performance does not compromise comfort. With power in abundant reserve, the car will cover great distances across Thailand with utmost ease, with owners arriving fresh at their eventual destinations no matter how far away they are.




Sing Sing Theater

Why don’t you store


Decorated by Ashley Sutton, the designer behind Maggie Choo’s, SING SING shares the same DNA. It’s as if a modern days Jules Verne was throwing a party with Chinese spirits from the 1920’s. This sumptuous den aims to become Bangkok’s hottest party venue, so check it out when in the area...

This eccentric bohemian laboratory brings all unique Bags, Straps all the way from Paris. Under the brand “Rosebud”, you can customize it just like your style. One stop Unique fashion for you all.

Embracing the Asian culture by adding the necessary quirky tweak is our moto…the colourful curios and artwork at toineinbangkok are designed with a touch of humor and crafted in a thought-provoking and unconventional manner. Many of the trendsetting items are limited edition, with the majority custom made in collaboration with local artists in small workshops. Shops ‘toineinbangkok’ & ‘petit toineinbangkok” at SO SOFITEL are opened from 10am to 9pm.

Hotel Muse, Bangkok


Sky on 20

Hotel Muse is part of Accor’s MGallery collection of distinctive properties, each unique in style and décor. It brings to the city its only hotel dedicated to fashion and the arts, and dedicated as well no less to the art of pure pleasure. Every element of the PIA-designed interior reflects a devotion to Rama V-era elegance yet with contemporary and sometimes playful twists.

A scalp and haircare specialist only using two products: Kerastase L’Oreal. The owner, Fon has an extensive knowledge of these products and strongly believes in their high quality and effectiveness. They assess individual needs of clients and customise treatments. An oasis behind Benchasiri park on Sukhumvit Rd. They also have waxing and a nail spa using high quality products. The staff all speak English and are trained by L’Oreal technicians

Novotel’s latest dining concepts that serve superb local and international cuisine, and ‘Sky on 20’, our Rooftop Bar on the 26th Floor, the perfect venue to round off the evening with a nightcap while taking in the colors and lights of the Bangkok nightscape.

Hotspot Bangkok

“Be yourself, everyone else is taken”! FB@WhyDontYouStore / 092 270 1933


The Siam


Mandarin Oriental

The Siam offers traditional, home-cooked Thai cuisine at Chon restaurant overlooking the Chao Phraya River. Amazing glamourus place for an unforgettable romantic dinner.

Mejico is a perfect place to hang out with friends. Have fun with tequilas, margaritas, signature cocktails, and best Mexican food in town.

The Author’s Lounge is known as one of the most photogenic place in the hotel that gives the feeling of old world charm while bringing 140 years of history back to life.



Catch Beach Club

Kaanda Beach Life

HQ Beach Lounge

This season Kaanda beach life are tilting their panamas to the enigmatic bohemian. 2017 will launch stunning collection full of fabrics, patterns and designs that inspire one to embrace the bohemian lifestyle. There are many translations for the word Kaanda, however one description has a particular appeal to it, embracing the spirit of being truthful to yourself and to others. I think we can all agree - there is nothing more beautiful than an attractive woman who is just as lovely in her demeanor as her form. Run now to their shop in Boat avenue and discover the Bohemian Collection

Phuket’s Most Exciting & Stylish Contemporary Beach Lounge Located in kamala,enjoy splendid seaside Lounge experiences in chic simplicity and celebrate wonderful company with light beach side fares, true cocktails and sensuous wines.


Kate’s hair & makeup studio

Little Paris

Stylish and trendy, Lalita finally brings in Phuket, at Boat Avenue the unique Italian quality and style! You should stop and discover amazing shoes brands for men and for women, from everyday shoes to special occasion ones, Lalita will be your reference shop in Phuket for good quality fashion shoes from sneakers to high sky heels up to size 41 for women and 46 for men. FB@lalitaitaliandesignershoes

“Mirror, mirror, tell me who is the most beautiful in this country?” Your beauty is perfect your Majesty! But a young girl is preparing to be more pretty than you thanks to Kate’s team! If you go to Kate’s Studio, you will be treated as a princess with expert advice, massages, nail spa, make up or a new haircut the team will provide all you need to be perfect. Call 076 620 020

Amazing place with an incredible atmosphere! I would recommend highly this restaurant, especially for their choice of salad, reasonable price & portion. The desserts are yummy! Pop in at Boat lagoon and enjoy the experience.

Catch Beach Club on Bangtao Beach is Phuket’s most inventive, style-setting beach club. Bringing glamour and exciting tropical nights to the sands of Phuket, Catch Beach Club is open to all who love fashion, fun and fabulous seaside dining.


Hotspot Phuket

@insiderasia Got a Hot Tip? Want to display your business on this section of the magazine?



Royal Pennae Shop

Le Winch

HOME Kitchen, Bar &Bed

A specialist Florist in Phuket Town. Royal Pennae offers superb flowers imported from around the world. They provide flower arrangement for weddings, garden parties, banquet and also other occasions which includes Birthday, Anniversaries, Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, Grand Opening, Sympathy. Tel.+66 (0)88 752 6691 Line. Royalpennae

Le Winch, at Phuket’s east coast Boat Lagoon, run by Chef Vincent Meuwly from Lausanne, is a cosy, 40-cover restaurant. Le Winch is recommendable in that it presents a regular plat du jour and a menu offering wholesome and unpretentious French Mediterranean fare with an emphasis on absolute freshness prepared by Vincent himself who, by the way, insists on serving food on piping hot plates. FB@lewinch.phuket.9

Their large, yet intimate trendy interior allows you to relax with a few drinks after work or enjoy a delicious meal with family and friends before a night out on the town! You can customize and plan perfect events using their three main areas, which include the Rooftop Bar, Terrace and Main Restaurant. Unexpected soul place in Kalim.


Usha Decor

The CAFÉ Gourmand

Located on Phuket’s sunset coast 10 minutes from pristine Bangtao Bay and famous Surin Beach. A confidential luxury estate of 4 private pool villas (2 bedrooms & 3 bedrooms) Thai Balinese style with a serene tropical garden. Enjoy a no stress vacation in a 24h secure resort with residential hotel services. Close to residential Laguna area and all amenities: shopping avenue, restaurants, spa, superstores, etc. Few minutes walk to local village, typical fresh outdoor market and temples.

“Doctor, I think I’m suffering from chronic nostalgia of Holidays, It is serious?” “Dear Lady, good news, I have the remedy for this: Go immediately to Usha Decor! Amazing tropical, Balinese style decoration is waiting for you! Soak up the zen and colourful atmosphere to bring some sun touch at your home”Located in Boat Avenue and Home Pro in Chalong, these new concept stores are offering a stylish selection of trinkets.

Just a stone’s throw away from Wine Connection and Tesco Lotus Bangtao, Café Gourmand is a lovely place with ultra comfortable seating and large tables. Cafe Gourmand is a place where you feel at home with casual elegant dining. Enjoy a convivial atmosphere where diners relax and soak up the experience. Awaken all the senses as lounge music plays in the background. A new generation of dining that leaves you feeling invigorated. Call 087 278 4038

Hot Spot Phuket




Red Frog Shop

Havana Cafe

The Cove

A desire to please or to be pleased? Red frog is a concept shop offering a unique boutique experience. Coming from all around the world you will discover amazing lithographs from Christian Develter, art scarfs by BUBU, Amore Essentials candles, gypset jewels and a lot more of accessories and decorations... Located in Boat Avenue, Red Frog is the shop where you will find the perfect gift for that someone who has everything! Call 080 781 8162 BOAT AVENUE Cherntalay

A great steakhouse should fulfill three criteria: the quality of the meat, the seasoning and of course, the preparation. Havana Cafe delivers quality Black Angus steaks with fine texture and tenderness. Perfectly seasoned simplicity. A charming and lively restaurant with an abundant wine list.

The Beach Cafe situated on the waterfront in Ao Yon Bay is a relaxed restaurant and beach bar. it’s a perfect secret spot for a lazy lunch under the shade of the palm trees with your feet in the sand or a romantic dinner.




Let’s Camp in Style with THE TENT ! Phuket town has a new little corner offering home-made dessert, food & delicious drinks in a unusual scenery. It’s open every day .

The Italians are masters of seduction, everyone knows it. In keeping with this reputation, Cecconi Italian Cuisine seduce you and resistance is futile. Start with Parma ham on wood board, follow with pasta and crispy pizza. The homemade tiramisu is divino. There is nothing to do, you are lost in paradiso! You will be back again and again …

Krisna will provide you high quality creative graphic design that delivers powerful, compelling and effective business solutions. Explain to her what you need and she will get back to you with a fresh and original concept. Contact: Krisna Gallerne Mobile +66(0)80 591 6288 Email:

Hotspot Phuket

For 7 years now, toineinbangkok team is proposing in the Boutiques numerous revisited Asian products from all around, with a twist of humor and disalignment. Recently, 2 boutiques were merged at the Street Lobby of the SO Sofitel Hotel on Sathorn, one big is dedicated to Design, Art&home decoration items and the second one toineinbangkok is full of fancy stuff for kids, decoration, accessories and clothes. The places are set-up to make your eyes meandering, wandering, and create delight, surprise and enchantment... “We love to source and develop pieces with artists, we also have fun to add unexpected and personal touches to the items, to mix material and colors in a different manner”. This gives a funky mix of object’s d’art and a unique feeling. Both the prices and the wide selection on offer allow for something for everyone. The stated mission is ‘to make you feel happy’…. Colors, shapes and details are particularly studied to express this. Mixing different styles but always in a gentle and joyful manner, here at toineinbangkok

“we love to make you look and feel your best. Let’s make every day a good day! ”





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