Village Festival showcases next generation of Thai designers’ tourism products

Bangkok, 24 November, 2017 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is showcasing a range of the Kingdom’s creative tourism products developed by the new generation of Thai designers at the Village Festival from 24 to 26 November at Chulalongkorn University Centenary Park in Bangkok.

Thailand Village Festival
Mrs. Sujitra Jongchansitto (left), TAT Deputy Governor for Tourism Products and Business, and Associate Professor Wisanu Subsompon (right), Ph.D. Vice President for Property and Innovation Management, Chulalongkorn University, jointly opened the 3-day Village Festival

Mrs. Sujitra Jongchansitto, TAT Deputy Governor for Tourism Products and Business, said the three-day Village Festival anchors many of the other exciting events during the first month of the ‘Amazing Thailand Tourism Year 2018’ according to the Thai government’s development agenda for the Thailand 4.0.

“The event also reinforces TAT’s message to highlight unique Thai local experiences, encouraging to invest in promoting sustainable tourism development that ultimately benefits the local community.

“This strengthens Thailand’s position as a preferred destination among international visitors, and at the same time boosts domestic travel while encouraging more involvement from a new generation of Thai designers and business entrepreneurs,” Mrs. Sujitra added.

Twenty finalists are using the Village Festival to showcase individual entries of their creative tourism products in the ‘Thailand Local Tourism Design Awards 2017’ competition.

This new generation of Thai designers created and designed concepts for their products based on the local wisdom and culture of 30 communities in eight regional tourism centres nationwide. Their products will be presented at the Festival alongside 40 other selected small and medium-sized enterprises, community enterprises and local communities across the country.

Thailand Village Festival

Thailand Village Festival

Shoppers attending the event will be pleased to find a wide range of food and drinks, souvenirs, accessories, clothing, handicrafts and household items available at the Village Festival. Other special activities include an interactive ‘Chef Theatre’ presentation that showcases the talents of three Thai celebrity chefs while they create innovative dishes using local ingredients. There is also an ‘Art Workshop – DIY’ class on how to make chic souvenirs, and a ‘Village Inspire’ panel discussion by new business entrepreneurs and mini concerts by Thai singers and celebrities.

Shanghai Mansion Bangkok named Southeast Asia Best City Boutique Hotel 2017

Shanghai Mansion Bangkok

Bangkok, 24 November, 2017 – Shanghai Mansion Bangkok was named ‘Southeast Asia Best City Boutique Hotel 2017’ at the 7th annual World Boutique Hotel Awards gala dinner and ceremony held in London earlier this month.

Situated in the heart of Bangkok’s historic Chinatown, Shanghai Mansion is nearly a century-old building that served as the city’s first Chinese Opera House, when it was regularly visited by the Thai Royal Family.

After years of neglect, Burasari Group converted the landmark building into a Bangkok Chinatown’s first boutique hotel. The hotel immediately created buzz and excitement for its 1930s Shanghai and Art Deco inspired interiors.

Shanghai Mansion Bangkok

The World Boutique Hotel Awards is the first and only international organisation exclusively dedicated to recognizing excellence among luxury boutique hotels.

Unlike large chain brands, luxury boutique hotels are defined as style-driven properties that provide an intimate environment, distinctive experiences and intuitive guest services.

Winners are selected by a panel of judges comprised of travel industry experts and luxury travel journalists.

Play Thailand’s Conqueror 12 Hidden Gems Plus social media contest to win travel privileges and prizes

Bangkok, 24 November, 2017 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is using social media and a creative package of promotions to support its latest incarnation of the sparkling ‘12 Hidden Gems Plus’ campaign during 2018.

Conqueror 12 Hidden Gems Plus
Mr. Noppadon Pakprot (middle), TAT Deputy Governor for Domestic Marketing, presided over the press conference to announce the incarnation of the ‘12 Hidden Gems Plus’ campaign during 2018. He’s joined by Mr. Krid Pattanasan (2nd from right), Business Relations Manager of Thai AirAsia​, as well as representatives from other strategic partners

TAT, in cooperation with strategic partners Thai AirAsia, Nok Air and Toyota Motors (Thailand), will release a series of promotions targeting Thai domestic travellers during Thailand’s traditional high season (January to April) and the so-called ‘green season’ (May to September).

The key for social media addicts will be the Conqueror of the ’12 Hidden Gems’ contest held in cooperation with Application One Map, Fuji and Samsung. Travellers are encouraged to check-in to ‘12 Hidden Gems Plus’ destinations to collect badges or complete missions to be eligible to win special privileges or prizes.

This is just one of several promotions that TAT Governor, Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, said will highlight the uniqueness of each ‘hidden gem’, boosting domestic travel and tourism revenue.

“There will also be other activities launched under the concept of ‘less volume more value’ to focus on unique Thai local experiences, spotlighting each destination with a combination of other tourism marketing concepts,” he added.

These include:

*A series of online promotions and offline advertisements, media fam trips, plus a dedicated website www.citieshiddengemsthailand.com and Facebook page.

*Caravan trips in cooperation with Toyota Motors (Thailand) on four primary routes during 2018: Udon Thani-Loei and Phitsanulok-Phetchabun in February, and Chanthaburi-Sa Kaeo and Chumphon-Ranong in March.

*Slow Life bike trips in cooperation with the Nation Group and Mitsubishi Electric Kang Yong Watana on five routes in Nan, Loei, Ratchaburi, Trang and Trat will take place between January and May 2018.

*Special packages at the ‘12 Hidden Gems Plus’ Consumer Fair from 14 to 17 December, 2017, at Bangkok’s Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre. To support the packages, Thai AirAsia will offer special deals between January and April; Nok Air will offer special deals between May and September.

Key events with other special promotions and privileges for 1the 2 Hidden Gems Plus destinations are:
Poinsettia Festival in Loei, December 2017 – January 2018;
Starlight Celebration, Nan, December 2017 – April 2018;
Castles of Buri Ram, December 2017 – September 2018;
Strawberry Land and Green Market, Khao Ko, Phetchabun, 6-7 January 2018;
Makha Bucha Hae Phra Khuen That Festival, Nakhon Si Thammarat, February-March 2018;
The 101st Anniversary Ratchadaphisek Bridge, Lampang, March 2018;
Chumphon Sea World Festival, Chumphon, March 2018;
Trang Food Festival, April 2018;
Nang Yai Wat Khanon Festival, Ratchaburi, 13-15 April, 2018;
Dream Island Run, Trat, May 2018;
Fruit Festival, Chanthaburi, May – June 2018;
Samut Songkram Festival, July 2018

Photo gallery: some of the unique Thai local products in the 12 Hidden Gems destinations

Conqueror 12 Hidden Gems Plus

Thailand posts increased visitor numbers and tourism revenue for January-October 2017

Bangkok - night sceneBangkok, 24 November, 2017 – Thailand welcomed over 28.8 million international visitors from January to October 2017 and earned 1.47 trillion Baht in tourism revenue. Mr. Pongpanu Svetarundra, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, recently told a press conference on the kingdom’s tourism performance. Both figures represented increases over 2016.

The precise number of overseas tourists for the 10 months of January to October was 28,824,753, an increase of 6.69 percent over the same period of 2016. Tourism revenue generated was 1,472,698.81 Baht, up 9.31 percent over the 2016 period.

For the month of October 2017, the number of foreign tourists jumped 20.92 percent over October 2016 to 2,723,971. Tourism revenue for October 2017 also rose significantly, up 24.38 percent to a little over 142.63 billion Baht.

Among source markets, Southeast Asia stood out with 29.38 percent growth in tourists sent to Thailand during October. The top 10 individual markets were China, Malaysia, Lao PDR., South Korea, India, Japan, Russia, Cambodia, the US and UK.

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, Tourism Authority of Thailand Governor, commented: “With the launch in November of the TAT’s new ‘Amazing Thailand Tourism Year 2018’ marketing concept, which focuses on segments like sports, gastronomy, weddings and honeymoons, luxury and community-based tourism, we’re confident of even higher visitor growth.”

Thailand’s domestic tourism sector also showed positive growth. January to September 2017 saw Thais made 109.15 million trips in their own country (up 6.32 percent over the same 2016 period) generating more than 695.23 billion Baht in revenue (up 7.34 percent over the same 2016 period).

Combining the overseas and domestic markets, total tourism revenue for January to October 2017 amounted to 2,167,932.74 Baht, an 8.67 percent rise over the same 2016 period.

The Ministry of Tourism and Sports highlighted the main reasons behind the growth in tourist numbers and revenue, including the International Civil Aviation Organisation’s lifting in October of the red flag imposed on Thailand since 2015 over significant safety concerns in its aviation sector. This, Mr. Pongpanu said, had since resulted in a lot of requests for more flights into Don Mueang International Airport, the second of Bangkok’s two main airports.

Also, Thai Airways International launched a new four times weekly direct Bangkok-Vienna route in November and NewGen Airways introduced new flights from Nakhon Ratchasima to Chiang Mai and Phuket, among several new routes and increased flight frequencies by both Thai and international carriers.

Kimyong selected for the launch of “cashless market” in Songkhla

Kimyong market in Songkhla’s Hat Yai district has been chosen as the southern region’s first cashless market to be officially launched on Monday (Nov 27) during a meeting of the mobile cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.

About half of some 200 shops in the market have joined the cashless market project, a brainchild of the Finance Ministry, and all of them have been equipped QR code system through which customers can make online payments without using cash.

According to Finance Ministry’s branch office in Songkhla, besides Kimyong market, QR code system has been installed at two other spots � the canteen in Rajamangala University of Technology Srivijaya in Muang district of Songkhla and the farm market in the compound of Prince of Songkla University, Hat Yai campus.

One vendor at Kimyong market, Mrs Chaleo sae Lim, told Thai PBS that she was satisfied with the financial technology because no cash was needed and that money was immediately wired into her bank account.

Since it is new, she said both vendors and customers will have to get used to the system. However, she didn’t think that the system will push up her sale.

Many customers said that they still preferred to pay in cash because they were not familiar with the system. They added that they wanted authorities concerned to teach them how to use the system.

The country’s first cashless market was launched at Sam Chuk market in Suphan Buri during the mobile cabiet meeting in September.

The cashless market pilot project is supported by Krung Thai and Government Savings banks which supply the EDC devices to be installed at the shops that joined the project.

The Finance Ministry plans to set up cashless markets in all provinces throughout the country.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)