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Lately in Thailand, there has been a rising awareness on the quality of the air we breathe. A lot of urbanites check the quality of the air first thing in the morning, but we cannot fully avoid breathing some pollutants in – we can only try our best to "minimise" the unclean air intake and get our bodies an immunity. Although mostly invisible to the naked eye, the air we breathe is full of particulate matter (PM); chemicals, soil, smoke, dust or allergens, containing sulfates, nitrates, ammonia, black carbon, and mineral dust. These particles can be small enough to penetrate deep into our lungs, or even pass into our bloodstream, leading to much more serious lung and heart problems over time. Dr. Tal Friedman, Head of Naturopathic and Research & Development Specialist at Chiva-Som International Health Resort, gives some highly beneficial advices for us to safeguard our health amidst the fine dust situation.   Changing air filters - Make sure to keep the air filters at home, and at work if possible, clean. Replace when necessary and see if HEPA or better filters are available for your HVAC system. Filtrete rolls are an option to add to an existing system. Keep in mind that the finer the filter, the harder your systems fan will have to push. Clean more often - Vacuum and clean up dust often. Daily if your neighborhood air is very polluted and you have young children, older folks or those with medical conditions. Much of this dust is brought in from the outdoors and then recirculates inside your home. Doing a quick cleaning inside can improve indoor air quality. Get some plants - Get some household plants. There have been a couple of studies looking at the ability of plants to accumulate PM. Its seen that leaves with greater amounts rougher surfaces collected and accumulated greater amounts of PM. Epipremnum aureum (also called money plant, devils vine, devils ivy) is a good choice as the texture of the leaves has been shown to collect more PM than similar plants, but most plants with big rough leaves are good choices. Avoid strong fragrance - Avoid fragranced products like air fresheners, laundry detergents, etc. These contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs). VOCs can irritate the eyes, nose, throat and lungs. VOCs are also more commonly found indoors than outdoors. When outdoor air quality is poor it would be wise to limit exposure to VOCs when we are indoors. Eat more broccoli - Eating broccoli can help your body fight inflammation and expel pollutants.   Experiencing a wellness retreat at Chiva-Som is another way to improve your health, surrounded by nature and in the care of Chiva-Som’s wellness experts.  Wellness consultations and treatments to enhance your breathing and cardiovascular system. For more information or reservation, please contact Chiva-Som at +66 (0) 32 536 536, reservation@chivasom.com or visit owww.chivasom.com

Even though the global pandemic in 2020 may halted your international travels, it is still great to learn about wonderful things to look forward to when the situation eases up. For your future trips, here are some of the soon-to-be-launched tropical havens that could become your next favourite stays!   The Ithaafushi Private Island by Waldorf Astoria Maldives In January, The Ithaafushi Private Island Estate by Waldorf Astoria Maldives will make the paradise island even more paradisiacal. The elegant Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi invites you to experience its one-of-a-kind spin-off with superb privacy and first-rate luxuries on the secluded 32,000 sqm island. The Ithaafushi Private Island Estate features elegant standalone villas, accommodating up to 24 guests, accessible by a private yacht, alongside a team of dedicated Experience Curators to satisfy your every need while you are relishing in the stunning vista of endless sea of turquoise and gleamingly white sands.  W: www.waldorfastoriamaldives.com/private-island   Regent Phu Quoc If you seek an exquisite sanctuary for your body and mind, Regent™ Phu Quoc is the place. The all villas and suites resort offers options from one bedroom havens to expansive seven bedroom ultra-villas, all of which are dressed elegantly, as well as daily vista of breathtaking sunset best viewed from your private infinity pool, rooftop bar, or a Personal Haven fashioned on the beach. Besides, the resort's facilities and wellness journeys will make you feel more rejuvenated than ever. W: www.ihg.com/regent/hotels/us/en/phu-quoc/pqcrr/hoteldetail   Kagi Maldives Spa Island  Situated in the secluded tip of North Male’ Atoll, the adults-only five-star Kagi Maldives Spa Island has freshly debuted with 50 polished villas and top-notch wellness experience. At the heart of the island sits Kagi’s 1500-square-meter spa and wellness hub, offering personalised programmes for guests to Release, Restore, and Regain with a wide array of therapies ranging from the classics to the alternatives. To discover pristine underwater glamour, a dive centre is there to assist you. W: www.kagimaldives.com   Andaz Bali, Indonesia In historic Sanur, Andaz Bali will open its wondrous door in April with eye-catching design inspired by the surrounding traditional Balinese villages, while adding a contemporary twist. Andaz Bali will offer guests vibrant culinary experiences including grilled seafood on the beachfront alongside a myriad of leisure options including shared wellness facilities with the adjacent Hyatt Regency Bali. W: www.hyatt.com/en-US/hotel/indonesia/andaz-bali/dpsaz

Novotel has announced their collaboration with Disney and Pixar’s "SOUL" to provide its guests, fans and followers with a range of electrifying in-hotel experiences, one-of-a-kind augmented reality animations and more. From late 2020 to 2021, guests will be delighted to access unique augmented reality games at selected Novotel properties across the world. In Thailand, guests can immerse themselves in the world of Soul at Novotel Bangkok on Siam Square, Novotel Bangkok Sukhumvit 20, Novotel Suites Bangkok Sukhumvit 34, Novotel Hua Hin Cha Am Beach Resort & Spa, Novotel Phuket City Phokeethra, and Novotel Phuket Kamala Beach, with an option to book a Family Fun package, including complimentary access to an augmented reality game inspired by the Soul Universe, complimentary daily breakfast, and complimentary extra bed for kids under 16 years old. The package is available to book and stay from now until 31 March 2021. Bookings can be made here. Novotel has long welcomed families and children as important guests, even bestowing them with small gifts upon arrival. Families are given complimentary accommodation and breakfast for up to two children under the age of 16 in their room, or they can opt to book a second ‘family extra room’ at a 50% discount. Families checking out on Sundays also enjoy a relaxed day with a 17:00 late departure option (subject to availability) – giving them even more time to enjoy lobby-level entertainment and play areas designed for all ages.

With the Covid-19 pandemic crisis hitting the globe, a new genre of travel has appeared i.e. private, whether individual or group. Lifestyle + Travel has compiled a list of top villas and suites in Thailand for your next holiday in private and in style, as it looks like we will have to live with the ‘new normal’ for quite some time.   Soneva Kiri, Koh Kood Known for its unparalleled luxury meets eco-friendly philosophy, Soneva Kiri nestles within lush rainforest on an unspoiled island with some of the best beaches in Thailand. The Six Bedroom Sunset Ocean View Pool Reserve, a magical haven atop the cliff, spans over 2,928 sqm and caters up to 16 guests with its six bedrooms. The tree house is a dream come true for children, their own realm in a private jungle canopy. There is a separate master bedroom with walk-in dressing area and bathroom with outdoor vanity, blitz shower, steam room and bath. Four further ensuite bedrooms have with indoor and outdoor showers, bath and personalised deck areas. Other enticing features of this haven are the gargantuan swimming pool with its own water slide, gym and steam room, games room, outdoor dining table and oversized cushions on enormous day beds overlooking the water. E. mail@soneva.com / reservations@soneva.com W. soneva.com   Villa Siam at Iniala Beach House, Phang Nga Designed by Eggarat Wongcharit, Villa Siam is an eclectic fantasy inspired by Thai culture and Buddhism in Phang Nga. Eggarat’s extraordinary creations use a modern take on traditional Thai craftsmen’s techniques, and his unique and original work includes beds and sofas suspended from the ceiling by wicker bamboo, as well as a spa inscribed with Buddhist teachings translated into English, located within an ancient golden Thai bell. Intricate wickerwork and glass mosaics grace the rooms, one of which pays tribute to the sacred Buddha with three large illuminated images on the wall behind hanging white sofas, covered in mother of pearl. A wrapped pagoda with traditional Thai weaving expanding over it onto the ceiling ties the room’s contemporary lines with its Thai roots seamlessly together, and the weaving incorporates an elaborate dream catcher facing down upon guests as they walk in. A dining table seats up to six, with a backdrop of playfully-waving cats. E. info@iniala.com W. inialathailand.com   Villa 24 at Samujana, Koh Samui Set on a tranquil, pristine beach of Samui, Villa 24 is the largest of the Samujana villas at an impressive 1,808 sqm. This is a home for a big family or someone with many friends, as it showcases eight bedrooms. Villa 24 has both south and west views over the Gulf of Thailand for enjoying sunrises and sunsets over the ocean. It comes complete with an outdoor dining sala, private gym, cinema, large infinity edge pool and jacuzzi. The friendly Samujana Villa hosts have been handpicked and professionally trained to ensure guest needs are not only met, but exceeded. For fun beyond the villa, Samujana offers an extensive range of land and water experiences from boating excursions on a private sailboat to chauffeured tours

Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse brings you to a whole new GLAMPING experience without having to leave Bangkok! “Surawongse Glamping” has landed in Bangkok for the very first time, transforming the hotel's pool terrace into your one-off outdoor get-together, with the whole space all-to-yourself for ultimate enjoyment with an exquisite choice of indulgent tailored menu and beverages while soaking in splendid views of the glittering city under a starry sky. Open for booking for every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and starting from this 18 December onwards. Priced at THB 2,888++ per person, including dinner and beverages. The package is for 2.30 hours and 2 - 10 persons. For more information and booking, please contact pawika.j@marriott.com or send us Facebook message via www.facebook.com/marriottsurawongse

Since 2016, ART x Lagos has been a cornerstone of the African art scene, as well as the first of its kind in West Africa. Over 30,000 visitors, from art collectors, art patrons, scholars, to critics and more, have traveled from all over the globe to visit this cutting-edge art fair. The fair has also hosted delegations from leading global art institutions. The growth of the scene is undoubtedly indicators of Lagos’ position as a fast-emerging and exciting cultural hub. As this year has given most people a reason to reflect and pivot, these galleries represent the resilience and creativity of the African continent. Visitors to the online fair via ARTXLAGOS.COM will be able to explore 200 works from leading artists offering up new perspectives on histories grounded in Africa and its people.   BLOOM ART LAGOS Lagos, Nigeria Currently a unique fusion of an art gallery and private studio, Bloom Art Lagos offers intimate exhibitions in an accessible format that is supported by coveted ancillary programming, tailored to each exhibition. Inspired by a desire for innovative approaches to showcasing and challenging Nigerian artists, the gallery offers pointed perspectives on contemporary visual art, connecting it to significant cultural precedents. Featured Artists: Angela Amami Isiuwe, Gbenga Offo, Olu Ajayi, Richardson Ovbiebo and Uchay Joel Chilma.   ED CROSS FINE ART London, UK Ed Cross Fine Art collaborates with emerging and established artists on the African continent and its Diaspora, seeking to stage conversations between practitioners and international audiences, as guided by its artists. The exhibition platform seeks to amplify voices historically silenced, and to create space for their independent development. Featured Artists: Abe Odedina, Tiffanie Delune and Wole Lagunju.   GALERIE CÉCILE FAKHOURY Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire Opening its doors in 2012, Galerie Cécile Fakhoury had by 2018 expanded to Dakar, Senegal, and Paris, France. Strongly rooted in their respective identities and stories, the artists it represents distinguish themselves through the use of a language that abolishes barriers and rejects geographical stigmatisation. Featured Artists: Aboudia, François Xavier Gbré, Ouattara Watts, Roméo Mivekannin and Sadikou Oukpedjo.   GALERIE MAM Doula, Cameroon With nearly 25 years of experience and a strong professional reputation in the art market, Galerie MAM continues to offer exciting programs to its collectors and art lovers, in addition to providing advisory and logistics services. The gallery plays a significant part in the promotion of contemporary African art offering a robust program with a diverse catalogue of works. Featured Artists: Bernard Matussière, Boris Nzebo and Claudie Poinsard.   Kó Lagos, Nigeria In Yoruba, kó translates as a verb meaning ‘to gather’ or ‘to build’. The art space is dedicated to promoting modern and contemporary art with a dual focus on championing Nigeria’s leading artists from the modern period and celebrating emerging and established contemporary artists across Africa and the Diaspora. It aims to support the visual arts in Africa by providing a platform to communicate, share and grow. Featured Artists: Ben Osawe, Chike Obeagu, Chioma Ebinama, Isaac Emokpae, Toyin Loye and Uzo Egonu.   LOUISIMONE GUIRANDOU GALLERY Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire LouiSimone Guirandou Gallery was formed from pioneering gallery Arts Pluriels, one of the first traditional and contemporary art galleries in Africa. Through an eclectic program

Rosewood Bangkok introduces "Sweet Soirée" – a new evening dessert concept at Lakorn European Brasserie under the romantic theme of "Love Letter to Thailand". As the sky at dusk is turning glamourous pink, you can enjoy an expansive array of intricate all-you-can-savour desserts including mignardises, chocolate bonbons, pâte de fruits, marshmallow, mini tartlets, cannelés and cookies, as well as a choice of one exquisitely crafted patisserie from award-winning Executive Pastry Chef Florian Couteau. You can also enjoy pairing the confections with unlimited infused gin from 20:00 until 23:00, featuring one of three gin-of-the-week flavors: pineapple, strawberry or mango, while the vinyl-spinning DJ plays the funky tunes. For the Sweet Soirée debut, Executive Pastry Chef Florian Couteau created “A Love Letter to Thailand”, showcasing Thailand's alluring tropical fruits on the extravagant desserts. It deliciously exemplifies the “Partners in Provenance” program of Rosewood Hotels & Resorts®, in which hotel chefs share a passionate commitment to source, present and beautifully showcase locally produced, fresh, sustainable and seasonal ingredients. Sweet Soirée is available every Friday from 18:30 to 22:30 at THB 888++ per person, including one plated dessert and unlimited access to the sweets buffet. For more information or reservations, please call +66 (0) 2 080 0070 or email bangkok.lakorn@rosewoodhotels.com  

Phuket is an island of sophistication with an ever-evolving cultural scene. The recent opening of Living Art Gallery has elevated the local art scene to international level. Set in the centre of Blue Tree, the lifestyle hub of Phuket, the new gallery promises to showcase revolving exhibitions of works by Thai artists of different genres, as well as by designers who work closely with Thai artisanal communities, which the gallery intends to support. Led by Somchat Krainara, The Living Art Gallery will host its inaugural annual festival in Phuket during 26 - 29 November 2020. “Phuket is a tourist destination because of its local attractions. The city has its own charms and characteristics, drawing in visitors from all over the world. The city is incredibly rich in culture, and by bringing art into Phuket I’m hoping it will enhance the art and cultural reputation of the destination -- in other words making Phuket become known as a MICE destination for arts, and creating a truly cultural and creative city,” said Somchat. Both the gallery and the upcoming festival hold on to the same purpose – to provide a platform for emerging Thai artists to showcase their work to an international audience, and to support artisanal communities across Thailand with opportunities to make connections with art lovers, fellow artists and designers, and an international audience.   Living Art Gallery is divided into four zones:   Zone 1: Peranakan Culture (Baba-Yaya) in Phuket Province Inspired by the traditional Peranakan houses of Phuket old town, Awika Samukrsaman – the apparel designer – creates woven textiles in pastel hues that interpret the patterns, colours and symbols of southern Thai culture. Awika has been w orking closely with local communities to preserve the local traditional knowledge of textiles and weaving, while pushing it into a contemporary direction. Within the conceptual Peranakan house, the vivid and intricate embroidered paintings of Sunisa Assawinrungroj are displayed. Stirred by the death of her pet rabbit, Sunisa embroidered delicate rabbits in traditional Phuket dress into these pieces. Hanging in one corner is Rungcheewan Kamvichit’s collection of contemporary tie-dyes, made using fine Thai silk and the rare Shibori tie-dye technique. On the opposite side hang a painting titled Sao Phuket by Sarawut Yasamut which depicts a southern woman carrying a Chinese-style food basket and embraced by flowers native to Phuket and Indonesia. Ongkorn Sinlapangkul is also featured in this zone, with the artist’s special interpretation of the colours and sights of Phuket in two fantastical paintings of a seahorse and woman with a dragon mask.   Zone 2: Forest and Landscape of Phuket The second zone of the gallery takes visitors on a journey through Phuket’s landscape from the viewpoint of artists. It kicks off with a special collection of nature-inspired ceramics crafted by master artisan Professor Somlak Pantiboon, known for his pottery studio Doi Din Dang in Chiang Rai. Also hailing from northern Thailand, but from Chiang Mai, is Likit Tunoud who describes the interaction of humans and nature, and its oftentimes destructive consequences, in intricate ink-on-paper drawings. Adding his influence to this zone is Professor

This December, 3 of Marriott International’s world-class hotels in Bangkok will showcase the finest Chinese cuisine this December, as they host the “Flavors Explosion : A Journey through Chinese Cuisines” – a series of delectable dining events that demonstrate the skills of 3 Chinese culinary artists and the finest local and imported seafood. The series will be led by these hotshot chefs: Chef Oscar Pun is a native of Hong Kong who likes to combine classical recipes with innovative cooking techniques, having mastered his culinary skill for over 20 years in the kitchens of leading luxury hotels and top restaurants, including Michelin-starred establishments in Beijing and Singapore. He now delights diners at Pagoda Chinese Restaurant at Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park. Chef Bruce Hui is a Chinese Chef who has a passion to develop and refine time-honoured Chinese recipes. His simple yet sophisticated style focuses on the spirit of each dish and its ingredients, while not strictly adhering to tradition. Guests can discover his inventive culinary creations at Yào Restaurant, an award-winning dining destination of Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse. Chef Cheng Kam Sing learnt the art of Cantonese cuisine in Hong Kong, but has been a resident of Thailand since 1989, where he has worked at some of the most sought-after Chinese restaurants in Bangkok. At The Silk Road, The Athenee Hotel, A Luxury Collection Hotel, his modern yet authentic style is intended to accentuate the natural flavors and textures, with eye-catching presentation. For 3 nights only, on 15, 16 and 17 December 2020, diners can savor delicious and highly authentic dishes created exclusively for the event by the aforementioned trio of Chinese executive chefs. On each evening, these 3 epicurean experts will use their experience and ingenuity to craft an original menu, focusing on sublime seafood. This gastronomic gathering will be hosted on 15 December at Yào Restaurant, Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse; on 16 December at Pagoda Chinese Restaurant, Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park; and on 17 December at The Silk Road, The Athenee Hotel, A Luxury Collection Hotel. The “Flavors Explosion: A Journey through Chinese Cuisines” set menu is priced at just THB 2,888++. À la carte dishes are also available.  Marriott Bonvoy and Club Marriott members will enjoy exclusive Restaurants and Bars benefits. For more information and reservations, please contact: Yào Restaurant: www.yaobangkok.com / Wimolthip.L@marriotthotels.com / +66 (0) 2 088 5666 Pagoda Chinese Restaurant: restaurant-reservations.bkkqp@marriotthotels.com / +66 (0) 2 059 5999 The Silk Road: gec.theathenee@luxurycollection.com / +66 (0) 2 650 8800