Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Amazing Thai Taste Festival 2017 to showcase authentic cuisine of Thailand

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The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is joining hands with more than 40 public and private organisations to stage the Amazing Thai Taste Festival 2017 in Bangkok. Scheduled to take place from 8-11 June in the area around the Airport Rail Link Makkasan Station, the event will showcase authentic cuisine of Thailand in a range of meaningful and fun-filled activities.

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn (3rd from right in photo), TAT Governor; chaired today’s press conference to announce the Amazing Thai Taste Festival 2017. He was joined by Mr. Thawatchai Chan-ngam (3rd from left), Chief of Tourism Division under the Culture, Sport and Tourism Department of the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration; Mrs. Thaniwan Kulmongkol (2nd from right), President of Thai Restaurant Association; Chef Supamongkol Supapipat (right), Thai Celebrity Chef; and Ms. Pitchanart Sakakorn (2nd left), Thai Celebrity Foodie.

Mr. Kalin Sarasin, Chairman of the Board of TAT said, “The Festival is part of the Amazing Thai Taste campaign, which was launched in 2016 to promote the many aspects of Thai food and to encourage both Thais and visitors to discover distinct Thai tastes. As a result, the campaign can play a part in helping to generate sustainable income for farmers, food producers and restaurants.”

The four-day Amazing Thai Taste Festival 2017 will showcase the characteristics of Thai cuisine in 10 distinctive zones – local food, royal cuisine, partner and foodie tour, Thai herb and organic, local fruit, fruit buffet, street food, fusion and celebrity, food innovation and food truck. All are designed to offer everyone the chance to experience the very best of Thai cuisine, from fresh ingredients to sumptuous dishes and traditional cooking methods and innovative recipes. There will be booths by famous street food stalls and fine-dining restaurants as well as certified local eateries.

On each day of the festival, there will be activities taking place including cooking demonstrations of dishes from around the country, cooking shows by Thai celebrity chefs, culinary competitions and the sale of fresh ingredients, including herbs, fruits, and vegetables. There will also be daily music and entertainment to enjoy.

The Amazing Thai Taste Festival 2017 is one of the four key activities under the Amazing Thai Taste Campaign, including promoting six Thai dishes – Phat Thai, Tom Yum Kung, Green Curry, Som Tam, Massaman and Tom Kha Kai as well as seasonal Thai fruits; such as, durian, rambutan, mangosteen and pineapple. This is in line with the campaign’s three main aims: to improve income distribution nationwide; to raise income for the country and to promote sustainable tourism.

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor said, “With so many small and grassroots communities up and down Thailand being directly involved in fruit, rice and general food production, promotion of Thai food helps them to sell their crops and to create a strong international brand for Thai food and ingredients. At the same time, we can use Thai cuisine to drive tourism and boost spending.”

“Thai food is something that all visitors to Thailand enjoy, and for locals, our national cuisine is an obsession. After all, food production and dining plays a huge part in Thailand’s economy and tourism sector and deserves to be celebrated on an international level,” Mr Yuthasak concluded.

CHRIS FROOME TO RIDE IN L'ETAPE AUSTRALIA

The Snowy Mountains will welcome back the biggest name in world cycling, Chris Froome, who has announced he will again ride in L’Etape Australia by Le Tour De France.

Exclusive to NSW, the world-class cycling event is the renowned race for amateur road cyclists, secured by the NSW Government through Destination NSW.

The 157 kilometre course is described by Tour de France Director General Christian Prudhomme as providing a very similar experience to a mountainous stage of the Tour de France, with a multitude of stunning landscapes, topographies and ascents.

NSW Deputy Premier and Member for Monaro John Barilaro said the NSW Government was proud to support L’Etape Australia by Le Tour de France.

“I encourage cyclists across the country to register to be part of this exciting experience in the Snowy Mountains which provides the opportunity to ride with three-time Tour de France champion Chris Froome, one of the giants of world cycling.”

More than 3,500 riders participated in the inaugural event in 2016, with 95 per cent recommending it to friends.

L’Etape Australia by Le Tour de France will take place on 2 December 2017.

Early bird registrations are now open.

Photo: Chris Froome at the 2016 L'Etape Australia by Le Tour de France in the NSW Snowy Mountains.

MTF 2017 – FEATURED INTERVIEW: LUANG PRABANG VIEW HOTEL

The hotel on the hill will be the venue for the Mekong Innovative Startup Tourism (MIST) final startup pitch competition. During MTF, delegates will debate hotel investments while enjoying a spectacular view.

Luang Prabang View opened its doors in 2010 as a 5 star hotel with 74 rooms and has five categories of rooms, ideal to suit a wide range of guests from all over the globe.

This Venue will host the MIST on Tuesday 6th of June and will be one of the 16th venues. A great opportunity to show its leadership as an incentive hotel able to hold various groups and function to cater for all requests.

John Morris Williams, General Manager of the Luang Prabang Views share his thought about MTF 2017 with our storytelling team: Léa and Simon. Please also see the article “When Luxury meets Sustainability“.

Could you describe your position at Luang Prabang View Hotel?

John Morris Williams (J): I am the General Manager of the hotel. My responsibilities include improving the hotel and it’s direction in order for it to become a leading model here in Luang Prabang, as well as being the owner’s consultant for his business adventures.

Why are you happy that Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office have chosen Luang Prabang as a host for their future forum next June? How does it benefit your organisation?

J: Mekong Tourism Forum has been a great help for our green season period, where we experience the lowest occupancy.

Overall MTF brings in a wide range of people who can then talk about our city, hotels and Laos in general, opening more doors and avenues.

It’s also a great way to meet new people. Making friends is very important.

What do you think about the new format of the MTF 2017?

J: Nicely put together to share the venues and spread the event throughout the town.

It also creates opportunities for all 16 venues to showcase their abilities and what they offer, again creating a team effort.

Finally it gives clients a view of the city which is vital for Luang Prabang to share venues in any event.

Can you tell us more about the Mekong Innovation Start-up Tourism (MIST) event that Luang Prabang View Hotel will be hosting?

J: It’s of great value to the city hotels and those who contribute to work outside the box. This concept is required at all times to improve, MIST helps those who need some help and gives them guidance for the future SME.

It’s a great initiative for sure. Moving towards the future.

Finally, a word about your future project “Wearelao.com”?

J: “Wearelao.com” is a new website that will cover all of Lao in regards to questions we have encountered from Travel agents and guest alike.

We are in the early stages of this ambitious project.

Keep an eye open for August/September when we launch the site with over 800 pages, links and connectivity to the world!

We hope to be able to support Lao Tourism in their endeavour to create more awareness and bring tourists to all destinations in Laos.

www.wearelao.com site will be fully operational by August 2017

Visit http://www.mekongtourismforum.org/

Bamurru’s NEW Ultimate Kakadu

A new experience is now available with the launch of Wild Bush Luxury's own Kakadu program just a hop, skip and a jump from Bamurru Plains. Guests can now immerse themselves in neighbouring Kakadu National Park on Bamurru’s new small group experience.

The full-day adventure starts with a scenic flight to Jabiru in the heart of Kakadu where Bamurru’s field guide and new custom built vehicle will be waiting to explore escarpment landscapes, fascinating rock art galleries and ancient Aboriginal culture. Guests will cruise the East Alligator River with an Aboriginal guide, revealing local mythology, the river’s abundant food chain, traditional uses for many plants and animals and bush survival skills before returning overland, with a stop at the Bowali Visitor Centre, in time for sundowner drinks, canapes and the comfort of the safari lodge as the sun sets over Bamurru Plains.

For further information or to book this experience, visit.

Rendez-vous Canada (RVC) is showing that Canada is open and travellers are invited to explore.

Canada’s premier tourism marketplace, RVC, is an annual event that brings Canadian tourism providers together with buyers from all over the world. RVC provides a unique platform to launch new tourism products, share market insights, network, and increase the range of tourism experiences that the industry offers.

“As Minister for Small Business and Tourism, I’ve had the opportunity of meeting many Canadian tourism business owners this year at RVC,” said the Honourable Bardish Chagger, Minister of Small Business and Tourism. “The best ever attendance record is a good indicator that these hard working Canadians are helping to shape Canada’s thriving tourism industry.”

Some details:
  • RVC 2017 broke all attendance records: around 1,840 delegates attended—the most in RVC’s 41 year history.
  • Global interest is higher than ever before: there was more than one buyer for every seller in attendance, from 28 international markets. 
  • All provinces and territories were represented, showing that tourism really is from coast to coast to coast; 567 tourism organizations promoted Canadian products and services this year.
  • Deal-makers: delegates conducted over 29,000 face-to-face business appointments during the four-day event.
  • The Aboriginal Tourism Association of Canada brought together 32 aboriginal tourism businesses, the most in RVC history. 
  • Interest from China was at an all-time high representing more than 20% of buyers.

THE WORLD’S LARGEST PRODUCTION OF GREASE PARTIES ONTO THE STAGE IN SYDNEY AT QUDOS BANK ARENA

The world’s most loved musical, GREASE, will hit the stage at QUDOS BANK ARENA starring over 600 performers in the largest production ever staged. 

GREASE THE ARENA EXPERIENCE 
Tickets are on sale now from www.greasearenashow.com or www.ticketek.com.au

The ultimate party musical features all the favourite hits including; "You're the One That I Want", "Greased Lightnin'", "Summer Nights", “Beauty School Drop Out” and "Born to Hand Jive". This is a unique arena spectacular that you cannot afford to miss.

SINGING IN THE RAIN’s Meghan O’Shea and Drew Weston (Ghost The Musical) take on the iconic roles of star-crossed lovers, Sandy and Danny. And, after taking the nation by storm with her critically acclaimed performance as Tracy Turnblad in the national tour of HAIRSPRAY - THE BIG FAT ARENA SPECTACULAR, Lauren McKenna will swap the can of hairspray for a Pink Ladies jacket when she takes on the role of Jan. Also starring X Factor’s Barry (Southgate) Conrad as Kenickie, Ruby Clark as Rizzo, Stacey de Waard as Frenchie and Emily Monsma as Marty alongside a mass ensemble of over 600 young performers.

Grease is the timelessly funny story of 1950s teen love, cliques, and peer pressure. Join your favourite Rydell High students, Danny & Sandy, The T-Birds and the Pink Ladies along with a cast of hilarious characters as they jive and bop their way to Graduation. It's GREASE like you've never seen it before! Take the whole family along for a night you'll never forget!

Produced by Harvest Rain, this production will follow in the footsteps of their previous arena productions of CATS and HAIRSPRAY, which both played to capacity audiences and rave reviews around the country.

GREASE - THE ARENA EXPERIENCE plays at QUDOS BANK ARENA, Sydney Olympic Park for two shows only on Saturday 20th January at 2pm & 8pm.

Directed & Choreographed by Callum Mansfield, Musical Direction by Dennett Hudson, Design by Josh McIntosh, Lighting Design by Trudy Dalgleish, Sound Design by John Taylor.

Book Music & Lyrics by Jim Jacobs & Warren Casey
By Arrangement with Origin Theatricals

Tickets will go like GREASED LIGHTIN’. 

Book now at www.ticketek.com.au

Ibaraki: Hitachi Seaside Park

Hitachi Seaside Park shows a different color depending on the time of the year you visit. 

The most popular times to go are during early spring when about 4.5 million "baby blue eyes," or nemophila flowers, carpet the area, and during early autumn when the green kochia turn to spiky red balls scattered all around the park. 

Apart from the majestic natural wonder, the park also has a giant Ferris wheel, a seaside train and a cycling course to enjoy.

Giant Ice Slide - School Holiday Fun

Southbank will once again be transformed into an action-packed winter playground when Eureka Skydeck present the return of the Melbourne Ice Slide for kids, parents and the whole of Melbourne to enjoy.

Welcoming more than 11,000 sliders last year, the giant icy slip-slide has become a must-see and do activity for Melbourne locals and visitors and is this year set to be bigger and better than ever. 

From July 1 – July 16, the Southbank waterfront activation will feature a mammoth 36-metre long, four-metre high ice slide complete with imported Canadian inflatable ice tubes and specially designed lanes of two for punters to glide down on. 

Taking three days to erect using a fine misting system at -12 degrees, Melbourne’s first and only giant ice slide is the perfect way to soak up the winter atmosphere. 

Open daily from 10am until late, with prices starting at $12 for three ice slides or $20 for six slides, kids will be vying for a turn to race down the mega ice slide these school holidays. 

To add to the winter fun, all patrons of the giant ice slide will be offered discounted admission at both Eureka Skydeck and Federation Square’s riverside ice rink. 

A portion of the funds will go to not-for-profit organisation Variety: The Children’s Charity. For more information visit www.eurekaskydeck.melbourne. 

Tickets must be purchased in person from the box office on the Southbank spillway, once the attractions open. 

About Eureka Skydeck: Eureka Skydeck is the highest public vantage point in the Southern Hemisphere. Located on the 88th floor of Eureka Tower, the observation deck provides patrons with 360 degree floor-to-ceiling views of Melbourne and beyond. 

During the school holidays guests will also be able to take full advantage of: 
 The Edge - The world’s only Edge experience is an awe inspiring a 3m by 3m transparent glass cube, which slides out from the building on Level 88, suspending guests above the Melbourne skyline. Patrons can purchase their official photo taken while out on the Edge, ready for upload to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. 
 The Outdoor Terrace - Enclosed by a wire grid, the Outdoor Terrace exposes guests to the elements on Level 88. The Terrace is right next to the Edge, so family and friends can view those inside. 

For further information about Eureka Skydeck, visit www.eurekaskydeck.melbourne or call 03 9693 8888.

VIVID Sydney 2017 at Tumbalong Park

Take a stroll through Darling Harbour, Sydney and immerse yourself in the interactive #vividsydney experiences of sound, light and art at the Huawei Mobile Hub at Tumbalong Park. 

Check out the animated faces on the new Huawei P10 phone and have your own GIF taken as a souvenir to share. 

Monday, 29 May 2017

LIGHTS ON FOR VIVID SYDNEY 2017

Sydney will be awash with colour until June 17 as more than 90 light installations illuminate the city for the annual Vivid Sydney festival, projecting colourful art on the world-famous Sydney icons and throughout the city.

Vivid Sydney is the world’s largest festival of light, music and ideas and officially opened for 23 nights until 17 June 2017.

More than 180 Australian and international artists have created the light installations and projections that will appear across seven festival precincts spread throughout the city.

Vivid Sydney also features more than 390 Vivid Music events and 280 Vivid Ideas talks and forums.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the festival is a boost for the State’s visitor economy and is expecting another bumper year following a record-breaking 2.31 million attendees in 2016.

“The lights are on at Vivid Sydney for another year and NSW is ready to welcome even more visitors who’ll fill our city hotels, visit our major attractions and eat at our restaurants, bringing great economic benefit to the State,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“We’re hoping to surpass last year’s massive $110 million injection into our State’s visitor economy and going on indications from hotels and major attraction bookings, we’re on track.”

NSW Minister for Tourism and Major Events Adam Marshall said visitors are coming to NSW, not only to experience Vivid Sydney in all its shining glory, but to venture further afield into rural and regional NSW.

“Visitors to Vivid Sydney are coming for the lights and staying for the sights of this great State. In fact, visitors who travelled on to rural and regional NSW after experiencing Vivid Sydney last year, delivered an additional 65,000 room nights into the regions and $11.5 million in visitor expenditure,” Mr Marshall said.

An extra 9,000 public transport services will run during Vivid Sydney 2017 to cater for the huge number of anticipated visitors to the festival.

With so much to see and do, visitors are advised to plan ahead to spend more than just one night at the festival, and importantly to leave the car at home.

For more information about closures and public transport services to and from Vivid Sydney, go to vividsydney.com/transport.

Vivid Sydney is owned, managed and produced by Destination NSW.

To see the incredible program, go to vividsydney.com.