TOP
h
  /  Highlights

Hilton, one of the world's leading hospitality companies, has recently unveil the opening of Hilton Garden Inn Kyoto Shijo Karasuma, being the first Hilton Garden Inn in Japan. The hotel is situated in a premium location in central Kyoto, offering 250 stylishly-appointed guest rooms and appealing facilities. Throughout the hotel, you can revel in the sleek interior design that combines traditional Japanese elements with contemporary beauty, with 9 types of guest rooms, ranging from functional standard rooms to luxurious family rooms that can accommodate up to 6 people comfortably. To take care of your appetite, all-day-dining Together & Co. pampers your tastebuds with Western and Japanese cuisines created using Kyoto's seasonal ingredients, served in a cosy and lively setting. "Japan is one of the world’s most sought-after travel destinations and we are delighted to celebrate the timely debut of Hilton Garden Inn following the reopening of Japan’s borders to international travelers. Opening in Kyoto, Hilton Garden Inn Kyoto Shijo Karasuma will cater to the pent-up travel demand that we anticipate will sweep over the country. This debut is especially significant as it also represents the 600th hotel to join the Hilton portfolio in Asia Pacific, cementing Hilton’s position as the fastest growing hotel company in the region and a great milestone in our drive to have 1,000 trading hotels in Asia Pacific by 2025," said Alan Watts, president, Asia Pacific, Hilton. For more information and reservations, please call +81 75-320-5111 or visit hgikyotoshijokarasuma.jp

JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort & Spa has officially unveiled the new face of the resort, with 127 additional rooms and villas, and new dining, recreational, and event facilities to become a stunning 'destination within a destination'. Situated by the long stretch of soft sands of Khuk Khak Beach in Khao Lak, Phang Nga province, JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort & Spa now features a total of 420 spacious rooms, suites, and villas, including new Lagoon Pool View Rooms, Deluxe Lagoon Pool Access Rooms, Family Pool Access Studios, One-Bedroom Villas and a Two-Bedroom Villa, plus the debut of JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort Suites, an exclusive collection of 52 stylish two-bedroom suites. More additions encompass the Aqua Play Zone with a wave pool, fountain trampoline, a big a waterslide and outdoor playground setting along the 2.4 km lagoon pool waterway, which is the longest in Southeast Asia; beachfront Drift Beach Bar & Grill serving heavenly Mediterranean cuisine and seafood grills; a brand-new beautiful ballroom that can accommodate up to 810 people, being the largest in southern Thailand; JW Garden, where organic fruits and vegetables are cultivated, welcoming guests to enjoy a family picnic amidst fragrant herbs and flowers; and more to come! "We are delighted to be unveiling the reimagined JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort & Spa today. There is high demand for fully-integrated, beachfront resort experiences in Thailand from around the world and we are positioned to deliver this across multiple segments and market sectors. I believe Khao Lak is ready and I believe the destination will become one of Thailand’s leading leisure tourism and MICE hubs in the years to come," said Abhimanyu Singh, General Manager, JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort & Spa.  To find out more about experiences at JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort & Spa, please visit www.jwmarriottkhaolak.com

The St. Regis Bangkok has recently unveiled its new afternoon tea experience, the 'Autumn Afternoon Tea', featuring tempting savouries and sweet treats made with seasonal ingredients at the side of the classics, reflecting the earthy shades of the season. The Autumn Afternoon Tea set includes specials like Pistachio Éclair and Raspberry Pate de Fruit; as well as Red Velvet Bread; Smoked Duck and Berries Sauce; Octopus and Heirloom Tomatoes; Beetroot and Mustard Marinated Salmon on Éclair/ and Organic Root Vegetable, Hummus; Green Olive Crumb; chocolate indulgences; and more. The afternoon tea experience is priced at THB 1,800++ per set including tea or coffee for two persons, served from 14:00 to 17:00, available until 20 November 2022 at The St. Regis Bar and The Drawing Room. Reserve your seats at +66 (0) 2207 7777 or fb.bangkok@stregis.com

Combining contemporary Korean design with the charm of the riverside neighbourhood, Hotel Naru Seoul – MGallery Ambassador is now open in the Mapo-gu district of Seoul, being South Korea's first hotel in the MGallery Hotel Collection, reflecting the story and unique beauty of the historic area while pampering guests with boutique facilities and services, featuring biophilic-inspired interiors and eye-catching exteriors. Situated in the northern banks of the Han River, the hotel's setting has long been a centre of transportation and businesses, in a close proximity to Incheon International Airport and other visit-worthy areas, making the 196-key hotel an ideal base of exploration. In addition, the hotel offers five dining journeys such as a chic French bistro Restaurant Voisin overlooking the serene river, among others. "We are proud to introduce the new boutique hotel concept to South Korea. Hotel Naru Seoul – MGallery Ambassador strives to deliver a memorable experience that is as unique as the neighbourhood itself. Maponaru and the Han River have inspired many artists in the past. Today, I believe the hotel will also inspire our guests, as they will be surrounded by the iconic views, compelling design, and art pieces from local artists," said Simon Kim, General Manager of Hotel Naru Seoul – MGallery Ambassador. To celebrate its opening, Hotel Naru Seoul – MGallery Ambassador offers The Good Mood Package and The Good Food Package, starting from KRW 349,000+. For more information and reservations, email mgallery.seoul@accor.com or visit hotelnaruseoul.com.

An avid food enthusiast from an early age, Sahil Rattanaphas spent his childhood mesmerised by cooking shows rather than cartoons, and learned to read poring over cookbooks! It was perhaps inevitable that he would find his calling in merging his love of food with his other great passion: photography. The prolific food photographer specialises in producing stunning visual assets for hospitality businesses under his agency, 'The Turquoise Truck Creative'. Sahil has worked in 15 countries so far, photographing extensively in Asia and Europe.   Capturing Bangkok’s Finest Chefs in Action Sahil’s instinctive creative flair stands out in his dynamic movement shots—a unique skill he’s carefully honed over the years with careful diligence and dedication. Apart from his profound understanding of food, his ability to visualise and create breathtaking compositions on the fly is what makes him such a highly sought-after food photographer in the hospitality industry.  Currently based in Bangkok, Sahil Rattanaphas has worked with some of the city’s finest chefs, from iconic street food establishments to Michelin-starred restaurants. He shares his perspective on working with them through his captivating shots and personal impressions.     Jay Fai: Bangkok’s Michelin-Starred Street Food Legend Being contacted by The World’s 50 Best Restaurants during the middle of the pandemic for a photo shoot was thrilling enough for Sahil, having been a huge fan since he was a kid. But when he discovered that he would be taking photos of Jay Fai, he couldn’t believe his luck!  Supinya Junsuta, better known as Jay Fai, has been operating her humble street food stall since the 1980s. She received international fame when her roadside eatery became Bangkok's first street food stall to be awarded a Michelin star in 2018 and then again in 2019.   Photographing Jay Fai for Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants: Icon Award 2021, Sahil found her an absolute inspiration up close. As a food lover, Sahil was initially sceptical about the feverish hype surrounding Jay Fai—how good can an omelette possibly be?  But when she forced him to stop shooting to eat, one bite of her signature crab omelette blew him away. He immediately understood her viral success. Jay Fai’s passion and dedication in transforming simple ingredients into masterpieces are, in his opinion, what makes her a true culinary artist.   Chef El Palanca: An Eccentric Force of Nature  Head Chef at Vaso When Sahil first met Chef El Palanca, he couldn’t help but feel slightly bewildered at the Madrid native’s outrageous eccentricity and flamboyant personality. Covered in tattoos from head to toe, with a forehead tattoo that reads “Can’t Lose”, Chef El Palanca is an absolute force of nature in (and out of) the kitchen. But despite their vastly different cultural backgrounds from different corners of the world, Sahil and Chef El Palanca quickly bonded over their passion for food (and beer). The chef’s quirky yet delicious Asian-influenced traditional Spanish cuisine at Vaso, Bangkok’s hottest new tapas bar, embodies his love of both cultures in his highly individualistic style.    Wilfrid Hocquet: A Classical Chef with an Urban Edge Executive Chef at Blue by Alain Ducasse When asked what he enjoyed most about

Situated in the heart of Kuala Lumpur's Chinatown, the city's new boutique hotel Else is slated to open in September 2022 in the former Lee Rubber Building, honouring the landmark's architectural legacy while embracing contemporary design, featuring 49 well-appointed guest rooms, 2 compelling dining concepts, and modern wellness facilities. Else Founders Justin Chen and Javier Perez commissioned local leading designers, artists and partners to create their vision of conscious hospitality. Malaysian design firm Studio Bikin conceptualised the design and oversaw the restoration which was executed by Faizah Architect, another celebrated Malaysian partner. Complex, thought-provoking and inspiring art pieces have been acquired from emerging and award-winning Malaysian artists. "Else has been a four-year project realized through the challenges of the global pandemic and inspired by the emerging new era of traveller. The result is an urban haven for the globally minded and curious. Our design and construction team have sensitively balanced a contrast of new and old with a refined juxtaposition of a pre-war building beautifully preserved and innovative design that invites all our guests to explore the property on their own, and discover intimate pockets to pause and reflect," commented Justin Chen. Else opens on 10 September 2022 with opening rates from MYR 398 until 31 October 2022. For more information, visit www.elseretreats.com

Award-winning Elements, inspired by Ciel Bleu, at The Okura Prestige Bangkok has unveiled its latest 'Summer Guestromonic Journey' set menu, featuring exquisite indulgences with cheerful tastes of summer crafted by brilliant Chef Gerard Villaret Horcajo from today, 29 June 2022, onwards. The culinary creations focus on the use of seasonal ingredients to take you on a buoyant journey inspired by vibrant blooms, refreshing fruits, and light-flavoured greens. Bursting with fresh zests, the 8-course delight features Hamachi with sweet peas, oyster and rhubarb; Smoke eel with kureson, crème fraiche and caviar; Norwegian Wild Cod with spinach, takenoko and cockles veloute; Fleur de Crouguette a la Barigoule with miso béchamel, Perigord truffle and gyojya niniko; and the signature Satsuma Wagyu A5 with pommes dauphine, shallot and umeboshi; followed by a choice of delicate dessert between Binchotan with Japanese whisky, citrus and milk chocolate; or Mono with verbena, buckwheat and smoke vanilla. On top of the new summer set menus, the chef has also included signature dishes from Element's all-time favourites as a la carte options for guests to order as add-ons. The Summer Guestronomic Set Journey at Elements, inspired by Ciel Bleu, is available from 29 June 2022, from 18:00 to 22:30  ‘Mizu’ 8-course experience is priced at Baht 5,900++ per person; ‘Chikyu’ 6-course experience is priced at Baht 4,600++ per person; and ‘Ku-Ki’ 4- course experience is priced at Baht 3,800++ per person. For more information and reservations please call +66 (0) 2 687 9000 or email elements@okurabangkok.com

If you are into creative drinks, design-forward venues, or one-of-a-kind tasting experiences, check out these recently-opened bars offering surprises that could be one of the highlights of your travel.   Club Soda Bali, Indonesia Images by Club Soda Bali   The 'postmodern happiness portal' has recently been launched in Berawa, curated by the founders of award-winning Restaurant Locavore in Ubud. Here, you can indulge in creative concoctions while surrounded by art installation and energetic beats. What to expect: Innovative cocktails, mocktails, as well as natural wines that will never cease to amaze, as well as Asian and Japanese-inspired bites – all of which are crafted using local Indonesian ingredients. Hours: Open Tuesday-Sunday, 17:00 onwards More details: locavorenext.com/family/club-soda     Villa Frantzén Cocktail Bar, Bangkok, Thailand Images by Villa Frantzén   The cosy Nordic barn is situated in the very heart of Bangkok, serving up fascinating modern Nordic cocktail with Asian influences. The bar is led by Gabriel Valdés, who was the mastermind behind Pharmarium, a unique bar experience in Stockholm. What to expect: Smooth cocktails boasting pure taste of natural ingredients that reflect the Scandinavian landscape. Don't be fooled by the drinks' plain looks – you will definitely be stunned. Hours: Open daily, 17:00 until midnight More details: villafrantzen.com     COCOA XO at Centara Grand at CentralWorld, Bangkok, Thailand Image by Centara Grand at CentralWorld   Centara Grand at CentralWorld has recently introduced its new, unique tasting experience in an alfresco setting, COCOA XO, Bangkok's first cacao pod, on the 57th floor, in collaboration with Martell Cognac and artisanal French Chocolatier Cacao Barry. What to expect: A marvelous world of decadence featuring premium chocolate and cognac, a chocolate fountain, bespoke choctails by talented mixologists, among others, overlooking stunning Bangkok skyline. Hours: Open daily, 16:00-00:30 More details: www.cocoaxobangkok.com     Metropole Underground at Hyatt Regency Phnom Penh, Cambodia Image by Hyatt Regency Phnom Penh   Phnom Penh's first subterranean bar, Metropole Underground, takes inspiration from the metro system of the early 20th Century Paris, seamlessly blending European with Khmer influences. What to expect: Speakeasy-style cocktails to be savoured in a chic surrounding, together with lively DJ beats. Hours: Wednesday-Sunday, 18:00-01:00 More details: www.hyatt.com/en-US/hotel/cambodia/hyatt-regency-phnom-penh/pnhrp/dining

On 18-19 June 2022, ASAI Bangkok Chinatown will host 'The Hamlet for Good' charity weekend filled with creative funs, organised by the team behind renowned The Hamlet bar-camp at Wonderfruit Festival, featuring exciting culinary collaborations by up-and-coming local chefs, a creative bar takeover, art therapy workshops, cutting-edge DJs, and other unique activities. Net proceeds go to support humanitarian assistance for victims of conflict. Situated in the heart of Bangkok's vibrant Chinatown, the hotel's concept of elevating local experiences seamlessly matches with the one-off mini-festival, being an ideal base of exploration. During the event, special room rates will be offered to the participants, starting only at THB 1,500 per night inclusive of complimentary access to the creative bar takeover (THB 550 on the door for non-guest / non-dinner ticket holders). Alongside three exclusive dinners held at three nearby venues, the tasty offerings include a creative Sunday Brunch at the hotel’s JAM JAM Eatery & Bar. Here's a peek of what's going to happen: Art Therapy with Peace Please and Watercolour Paints with Sansuwanya; an interactive art exhibition featuring curated masterworks from 15 emerging artists presented in 16 different rooms; not-to-be-missed collaboration meals at the hotel's JAM JAM Eatery & Bar and 3 partnering venues by Chefs Paolo Vitaletti (Appia Trattoria), Billy Bautista (Billy’s Smokehouse), Napol ‘Joe’ Jantraget (Samlor), Koranat ‘Tle’ Robkob (Mother), and Jirapat ‘Sept’ Praphotjanaporn (Aunglo by Yangrak), Chefs Bo & Dylan (Bo.Lan) and Num Weerawat Triyasenawat (Samuay and Sons), Chalee Kader (100 Mahaseth), Prin Polsuk (Samrub Samrub Thai), and more; a morning yoga session with Kru Jah; among others. Each dining experience at The Hamlet for Good is priced at just THB 3,000++ per person and includes one welcome drink. Special drinks pairings created by event sponsors Campari, Aperol, and Wine Garage will also be available. Workshops start at THB 1,750 per person. Special room rates are available via direct booking at asaihotels.com or call +66 (0) 02 220 8999. Dinner and workshop tickets are available at ticketmelon.com/asaihotels/thehamletforgood2022