Jan 152016

WORD ON PHUKET CELEBRITIES: Shoppers at Central Festival Phuket rushed to snap up free 2016 calendars handed out by trending celebrities Jeda Saranya and Aun Chaiyaphon on Wednesday (Jan 13).

The calendars feature glam shots of a variety of stars from Channel 7’s popular TV soaps, dramas and movies.

Aun Chaiyaphon (1) Aun Chaiyaphon (2) Jeda Saranya (1) Jeda Saranya (2) Jeda Saranya (3) Jeda Saranya and Aun Chaiyaphon (1)

Dec 262015

WORD ON PHUKET: The festive spirit was in the air at Central Festival Phuket on Christmas Day with seasonal fun and entertainment brightening up Phuket’s most popular fashion mall.

Santa and his dazzling Santarina helpers gave out sweets to Christmas shoppers, who were also treated to traditional Thai music and dance performances.


Santarina gives a treats to a young visitor at Central Festival Phuket on Christmas Day.

Young visitors at Central Festival Phuket surround Santa and two 'Santarinas' as they gave out gifts to shoppers at Phuket's biggest fashion mall on Christmas Day.

Young visitors at Central Festival Phuket surround Santa and two ‘Santarinas’ as they gave out gifts to shoppers at Phuket’s biggest fashion mall on Christmas Day.

Traditional Thai dance, entral Festival Phuket

Christmas Day entertainment for shoppers at Central Festival Phuket included traditional Thai dance on stage at the Grand Hall.

Dec 162015

WORD ON PHUKET SPORT: The Asian Cricket Sixes Tour (ACST) are proud to announce that the ICC Award Winning Phuket International Cricket Sixes Tournament will be played at the Alan Cooke Ground, the premier cricketing venue on the island following talks with the Phuket Cricket Group (PCG). The Sixes forms part of the Phuket International Cricket Week along with the Kata International Cricket 7’s Tournament. The 7’s will once again take place at the Kata Group Republic Ground in the south of the island.


Cricket Phuket

Up to thirty teams will congregate in April from all over the world for the Phuket International Cricket Week to join up with locally based Phuket sides. The Sixes, which were first competed for in 2004, will be played between Thursday 14 April and Sunday 17 April 2016. The fifth annual 7’s will follow between Wednesday 20 April and Saturday 23 April 2016.

The Phuket International Cricket Week will offer participants a unique two holidays in one for the first time, as the Sixes team up with the Arinara Bangtao Beach Resort, before moving to the Kata Beach Resort and the Andaman Seaview Hotel for the 7’s.

ACST Chairman, Michael ‘Cat’ Maher is delighted with the development. “The ACST are constantly looking at ways to invigorate and make our events more exciting and better for all involved. The PCG have been an enormous help in us being able to offer the exciting new developments for 2016, and we can’t thank them enough.” “We are also thrilled that our 7’s event continues to develop with huge thanks to the Kata Group,” he added.

PCG Chairman, Anthony Van Blerk is equally enthusiastic at the news. “The PCG are delighted that our long lasting relationship with the ACST continues to prosper since the first Sixes tournament back in 2004. We look forward to welcoming teams to our superb facility in April.”

Team entries for both events are now open for what will be a superb festival of cricket and camaraderie. Don’t miss out on your chance on a dream cricketing holiday, making lifelong memories and friends.

For further details, please contact Mr Maher at or by telephone on +61 407 385 481.

Nov 282015

WORD ON THAI CULTURE: Thailand celebrated Loy Krathong on November 25th, lighting up waterways around the country with candle lit floats or “kratongs” made from banana trees and decorated with flowers, incense and candles. Scroll down for video.

Loy Kratong Phuket

The ancient Buddhist festival is one of the most spectacular and serene occasions in the Thai lunar calendar, held on the full moon night of the twelfth lunar month (usually in November), marking the end of the rainy season.

Originally a Brahman festival, Thai Buddhists adopted the occasion to honor Buddha and give thanks to the Godess of water, Phra Mae Khongkha.

The candle venerates the Buddha with light, while the krathong’s floating symbolizes letting go of all one’s hatred, anger, and defilement or attachments.

Romance is often in the air though, as amorous couples enjoy the intimate ambiance of it all under the full moon, releasing kratongs together in a courting ritual, placing strands of their hair and nail clippings in the kratong as a symbol of letting go of past transgressions and negative thoughts.

Oct 082015

WORD ON PHUKET ARTS SCENE: Phuket-based performers Theatrix Phuket are putting on “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare” at the Green Man Pub on Saturday, October 17, at 6:00pm.  The group of professional performers promise a funny, fast-paced show covering all 37 of Shakespeare’s plays in 97 minutes more or less!

Tickets are only 150 THB per person and can be bought in advance at Green Man Pub and Restaurant; HeadStart International School Admin Office; Oasis Ed.; The Book Cafe, or online via Ticket Master. 


If none of those are convenient, you can contact me here at or call me at 093 6490066, and I will reserve tickets for you. If you do choose to reserve tickets to pay for at the door, please come a bit early since, if need be, we will need to release unpaid tickets a few minutes before curtain. Thanks for listening and I look forward to hearing from you and seeing you soon.

Oct 022015

WORD ON BANGKOK: On the occasion of the 146th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the Embassy of India, Bangkok in collaboration with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission of the Asia and Pacific (UNESCAP) commemorated the 9th International Day of Non-Violence on Friday, 2 October 2015 at the UN Conference Centre (UNCC), Bangkok. The Day has been celebrated in UNCC since 2007 when the United Nations General Assembly decided to observe 2 October as the International Day of Non-violence.

International Day of Non Violence in Bangkok

Dr. Shamshad Akhtar, Executive Secretary of the UNESCAP read out a special message of H. E. Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary General of the UN. In her remarks, Dr. Akhtar highlighted the significance of non-violence and urged the International Community to secure a culture of peace, tolerance and understanding. Ambassador Harsh Vardhan Shringla in his address underlined the importance of Mahatma Gandhi’s ideas of non-violence and truth in today’s world and urged the gathering to strive to adopt Gandhian methods to the present day challenges, with sincerity and diligence.

Ambassador Rajiv Bhatia, former Director General of the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA), delivered a special lecture on the “Relevance of Gandhian Philosophy in the Contemporary World”. Ambassador Bhatia highlighted the multi-dimensionality of Mahatma Gandhi’s personality and his philosophy and its relevance today. A short documentary titled “the Visionary Dreamer” produced by Prasar Bharti was screened. Students from the Modern International School of Bangkok and Ms. Ravinder Kaur & Group paid a tribute to Mahatma Gandhi by performing Bhajans and songs. A presentation titled ‘a simple man, the world calls Mahatma” produced by Public Diplomacy Division, Ministry of External Affairs was shown at UNCC. The event ended with the offering of floral tributes by the attendees at the bust of Mahatma Gandhi installed by Government of India in UNCC.


The function was well-attended by Ambassadors and members of the Diplomatic Corps, members of UN agencies, teachers and students of various Universities and schools in Thailand (Thammasat, Mahidol, Silpakorn, Siam and Assumption), representatives of various Indian Associations and media.

Sep 282015

WORD ON PHUKET: Brain development franchise for toddlers Babies Genius opened a brand new branch at the Boat Arcade edutainment and family centre in Ko Kaew on Saturday the 26th of September.

Babies Genius director Ms Pinrudee Rakkito was joined by Deputy Managing Director of Phuket Boat Lagoon, Mr Boon Yongsakul to cut a ribbon to mark the grand opening event, and local monks performed a Buddhist blessing ceremony for directors and staff along with local parents and children.

The colorful indoor activity area at the family mall is now offering daily early-learning fun and games for children aged six months to six years, including music and yoga as well as physical and sensory play activities in a stimulating child-friendly environment.

Babies Genius Phuket Boat Arcade

Sep 282015

WORD ON PHUKET:Phuket Governor Nisit Chansomwong hosted a dinner at Sam’s Steak, Holiday Inn Patong on the weekend to celebrate his birthday and bid farewell to some of Phuket’s dignitaries past and present. Governor Nisit leaves his post after a year as the Phuket provincial head and is scheduled to take up a new position as Governor of Nonthaburi province in the coming weeks.

Phuket Governor Nist Farewell dinner

Phuket Governor Nisit Chansomwong (centre) was joined by Central Festival Phuket Senior Vice President Property Management & General Manager Ms. Wilaiporn Pitimanaaree (3rd from left) and former Phuket Provincial Police Commander Pikat Tantipong (2nd right) and other distinguished guests for a farewell dinner at Sam’s Steak, Holiday Inn Patong, on the occasion of his birthday, on Sunday (Sept 27).

Wilaiporn Pitimanaare with gift for Phuket Governor Nisist



Governor Nisit will be replaced on 1st December by returning Phuket Governor Mr Chamroen Tipayapongthada, who was instrumental in negotiations to end a long-running standoff between local taxi drivers and district authorities.

Sep 262015

WORD ON PHUKET SHOPPING: Customer service staff at Central Festival Phuket show off the Polo canvas travel bags and Harnn aromatic candle sets being given away free to shoppers and tourists spending between 1,000 and 10,000 baht with bonus discounts with purchases on Mastercard at the mall until November 15.

Central Festival Phuket

To get a free Harnn  travel candle set spend a total of 10,000 THB in cash or only 8,000 THB with Mastercard at participating outlets.

To get a free Polo canvas bag spend a total of 7,000 THB in cash get or only 5,000 THB with Mastercard or get a Polo foldable bag when you spend 1,500 THB in cash or only 1,000 THB at participating restaurants and cafes. To claim your free travel accessories present your receipts as proof of purchase at the Information counter.


Sep 192015

WORD ON PHUKET: Bargain hunters had fun rummaging through the 90-plus stalls at the first East Meets West Garage Sale on September 5-6.

Held at the new Boat Arcade edutainment and family centre at Phuket Boat Lagoon in Koh Kaew, the garage sale was a treasure trove of high-quality used and second hand items, plus a selection of top fashion brands.

Phuket garage sale

East Meets West Garage Sale at Boat Arcade Phuket

Attracting a mix of Thais, expats and tourists, enjoying the chance to rummage and haggle for books, toys, ornaments, fashion wear, accessories, artifacts and much more, the stall holders did almost two million baht in trade.

There was something for everyone, and for every kind of budget, from second hand designer brands and homemade bakes to big bikes and super cars.

A significant portion of the trade during the two-day event comprised sales of luxury brand lifestyle products, including a 130,000 baht Hermes handbag. An Audi car was also one of the luxury second hand items on sale with a Bt2.4m price tag.


A variety of used motorbikes and brand new imported bicycles were also put on display by a local dealership as well as kayaks and even imported caravans from Europe.

Apart from the luxury brands on sale, the majority of the stall holders were private individuals selling second-hand items from their homes and businesses.

The garage sale also gave local food & beverage vendors the chance to introduce their products to new customers and potential sales and distribution partners.

GarageSale5-6Sep (2)

Organizer Kanittha Prasopsirikul, Managing Director of By Kanittha Co., Ltd said solid plans for future garage sales were yet to be confirmed. However, many of the stall holders are already demanding regular garage sales.

“The aim of the garage sale was to help boost business within the local community in a convenient location with many benefits for both shoppers and stall holders, including a sheltered place to do business and with ample parking for visitors, all with minimum outlay costs, so in that respect the first garage sale has most definitely been a success,” said Ms Kanittha.

“Based on this initial success, we are considering making the garage sale a monthly event,” said Kanittha. For more information about future garage sales contact By Kanittha. Tel: 0818103328. Email:

Sep 022015

WORD ON ENVIRONMENTAL NEWS: Leading dolphin freedom campaigner Ric O’Barry has been released after a night in jail following his arrest in Shingu, Japan, where he has been campaigning against the slaughter and capture of dolphins at Taiji Cove.

Ric O’Barry, Founder/Director of Dolphin Project, recently hosted a group of students, teachers and parents from Phuket so they could monitor the slaughter of dolphins at Taiji Cove and help generate international awareness of the dolphin culling for the Japanese food industry and the capture of some to be sold to sea parks, aquariums and dolphinariums across the world.

Read about the trip to Taiji by Phuket campaigners

Ric O'Barry - Dolphin Project

Founder of Dolphin Project Ric O’Barry.

O’Barry’s arrest occurred just before a new round of dolphin killing in Taiji Cove on September 1st and follows a letter from the International Marine Mammal Project
Earth Island Institute to Taiji officials pleading them not to go ahead with the planned September 1st dolphin hunt.

According to the Dolphin Project: Following his arrest on August 31, 2015, for allegedly not carrying a passport, Ric O’Barry,  was released after spending the night in jail by Shingu Police a short time ago with all charges against him, dropped.

O’Barry was arrested in the town of Nachikatsuura, a town located in Wakayama Prefecture, Japan at approximately 8:30 p.m on Aug. 31,  on suspicion of a violation of the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act of Japan. Several hours after impounding his vehicle, local police located the passport inside the car.

O’Barry, who travels to Taiji, Japan every year to document the start of the dolphin hunting season, was forced to miss the September 1, deadline this year. Tired, but in good spirits, he said over the phone that his arrest, “only brought more international media attention to the plight of dolphins in Japan.”

Toshio Fujita, a Shingu police official, would only tell the Associated Press that the activist, “no longer had to be kept in custody,” but he would not elaborate on the release.

O’Barry believes that the combination of elevated pressure on Taiji, and Japan’s, “extreme, right-wing, radical government,” is currently placing Westerners at risk. “They’re trying to get all Westerners,” he said, “and the orders are coming from higher up — not the local police. We have always had a good relationship with them.”

Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project wishes to thank the offices of Assemblymember Richard BloomCongressman Ted Lieu & the US Embassy & Consulate in Japan for ensuring Ric’s speedy release.

Japan’s penal system is notably harsh. According to a paper by Harvard Law School’s Ramseyer and Rasmusen, in 1994, Japanese district court judges convicted 99.9 percent of all defendants. The paper also suggested that high conviction rates in Japan could, “well reflect innocent convictions.”

Free to focus on the mission again, O’Barry had only one thing on his mind, “I gotta get four hours sleep and get back to the cove,” he said.

Dolphin Project Cove Monitors are on the ground in Taiji throughout the entire killing season to document and disseminate information to the rest of the world. O’Barry has been traveling to the cove for the past 13 years, multiple times per season. Please consider joining our team as a Cove Monitor, or learn how you can support our mission.

Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project is a non-profit charitable organization, dedicated to the welfare and protection of dolphins worldwide. Founded by Richard (Ric) O’Barry on Earth Day, April 22, 1970, the organization aims to educate the public about captivity and, where feasible, free captive dolphins.

The mission of the Dolphin Project is to end dolphin exploitation and slaughter, as dolphins are routinely captured, harassed, slaughtered and sold into captivity around the world – all in the name of profit.

Dolphin Project works not only to halt these slaughters but also to rehabilitate captive dolphins, investigate and advocate for economic alternatives to dolphin slaughter exploitation and to put a permanent end to dolphin captivity.  This work has been chronicled in films such as, ‘A Fall From Freedom,’ the Oscar-winning documentary ‘The Cove,’ and in the Animal Planet mini-series, ‘Blood Dolphin$.’

Sep 022015

WORD ON PHUKET: A handful of local skateboarders are taking their sport to a more extreme level for a bigger thrill by longboarding on Phuket’s steep and winding coastal roads.

Longboarding in Phuket

Phuket skaters take on downhill longboarding


A south African skater was teaching the local skaters some of the finer points of downhill longboarding, which seems set to catch on. These skaters were behind the push a few years ago to have public skate park built for Phuket skaters. Some of the local skaters that learned stunts, flips and tricks at Phuket’s only skate park have competed at national and international levels of the sport.


The skateboarders reckoned they could get speeds of up to 60 kmh on good downhill runs. Gliding down the twists and turns, the skaters risked a steep drop over the cliff edge if they overshot the curves.