Welcome to our April edition of the Absolute Newsletter. Over the past months, Absolute has added several new resorts on the paradise islands of Phuket and Koh Samui, which you will find featured here. Further Absolute has won two acknowledged prizes at prestigious events within the industry. Ending this newsletter we have also added information on what April-June has to offer in form of weather, annual festivals and activities for those of you thinking about your next holiday in Thailand.
Winners of Fractional Life Award 2010
Following the recent success at the Fractional Life event at which yooPhuket, our new fusion of Absolute Real Estate, scooped the much coveted prize for being the best fractional development in the Readers’ Choice Awards, Absolute have done it again by being presented with a prestigious ARDY Award at the recent ARDA conference held in Las Vegas, claiming top spot for the “We are Your World” video in the category for best video production.
>>> Watch video >>>
About Fractional Ownership
Picking up speed and interest; Fractional Ownership opens up a new way of vacationing, allowing you to increase the quality of life in a dream destination.
>>> Download Pdf: Fractional FAQ >>>
Our Featured Hotels & Resorts
Absolute Nakalay Beach Resort
PHUKET ~ Seascapes, sundecks and sunsets. Peaceful or pulsating, whichever way you choose it to be. It is as ideal for couples as for family fun. Brand new Nakalay Beach Hotel is a perfect romantic getaway in Thailand, nestling in a quiet cove on Nakalay Beach, yet within minutes of the 24-hour heartbeat of Patong Beach. Here, luxury beachfront apartments offer breathtaking panoramic views of the Andaman Sea, jungle clad mountains and some of the world’s best sunsets. Shape up in our fully equipped gym, laze with a cocktail on your sundeck around the freeform pool, then hit the Patong party scene, and tomorrow? More of the same!
Absolute Elements Beach & Spa resort
KOH SAMUI ~ Welcome to paradise. In a sunset cove, amid tropical jungle in a sunset cove, amid tropical jungle, vast coconut farms and dotted with swaying palms sits Absolute Elements Boutique Resort & Spa. Here on Koh Samui’s south-eastern point, you can escape, refresh, renew and rebalance, the better to face the real world once more. This luxury five star resort is idyllic, quite and secluded with an emphasis on nature, diet, health, fitness and relaxation. Truly, this is life as it should be. And yet, the bright lights twinkle within a manageable driving distance. The choice could be the toughest thing you face on Koh Samui.
Thai Public Holidays 2010 ~ Annual Events & Festivities
April 9-11th (Event): Phuket Bike Week
“This year’s BIKE WEEK will be the biggest in Asia” says organizer; Wittaya Singkala, of Ride Thailand magazine. Around 3000 motorcycles will make the roads on the island gently palpitate with riders gathering from almost 30 countries, steering some awesome machines towards Patong Beach. The event is expected to bring a much needed boost to the island’s revenue. Although the Phuket Bike Week (PBW) spans over less days than a week this year 4 days and 3 nights; 9-12 April 2010, there is plenty of participants expected to either arrive early or leave late. The PBW Exhibition at Jungceylon will feature the latest in gleaming chrome, the odd bit of leather and more of what the biker world has to offer. This year also including the very first International Tattoo Convention held in the country. Further bike show, entertainment and music performances will be held down by the beach at Loma Park and a big bike gathering at the Patong football field, where numerous bikes will be parked to write 2010 from an aerial point of view. PBW entry cards are available from 100 to 1,000 THB, depending on activities. The 1,000 Baht ticket comes with a t-shirt souvenir, a hat, stickers and a VIP Dinner Card, which also entitles local business’ offers of 30 to 50% discounts.
Friday, April 9th
See the bikes of this year’s exhibition at Jungceylon from 10:00 with the Big Competition starting at 16:00 and the grand opening of the Motorcycle show at 18:00-19:00 after which the big PBW Beach Party begins down by Loma Park with its music festival of Jazz & Blues featuring Tom Dundee and the band PongTep, from 20:00 until midnight.
Saturday April 10th
Various competitions held at Jungceylon from 14:00. The Big Bike gathering at the football field at 16:00 and with the PBW Beach Party continuing the music festival by Loma Park, this night featuring Rock & Reggae with Carabao, one of Thailand’s longest playing bands appreciated by handfuls of Thai generations, and the popular Job 2 Do will be among the performers, with the concert wrapping up at midnight.
Sunday April 11th
The big ”Ride for Peace” begins in Patong at 16:00 and roars south to Karon and Kata, then onwards to Nai Harn and Cape Promthep before the convoy heads north where a Grand Dinner will be held 18:30 at Tainaan Restaurant (opposite Central Festival) with visitors from 26 countries expected to attend. From 20:00 the PBW Beach Party continues at
Loma Park with Pong, Pae Hyrock, Jeab Pisut, and a collection of supermodels.
Monday April 12th
Motorcycles will be spotted leisurely cruising around the island or bikers just recuperating on the beaches of Phuket, taking a day recharging before the big Songkran Festival ~ Rumor has it that quite a few of them are heading for boat trips to surrounding islands…
Further details about this year’s events are available from Khun Sumon on (0)76 352069 or (0)81 6919346 ~ for international dialing add +66 and remove (0).
April 13-15th (Public Holiday): Songkran Festival
The Songkran Festival, an “astrological passage” celebrated in Thailand as the traditional New Year’s Day. It coincides with the New Year of many calendars of Asia and its date was originally set by astrological calculation, but has since been fixed to the 13th – 15th of April. The traditional celebration of paying respect to the elders, gathering of families, the cleansing of home and its household Buddha images and shrines, as well as, making offerings to the temples and monks is still a very revered tradition maintained by most Thai families, who take this time each year as an opportunity to meet up, traveling across the country in order to spend the Holiday with their loved ones.
Now days, the obvious celebration of Songkran is the nationwide throwing of water where locals and visiting foreigners alike indulge in being able to play like children; squirting, throwing and splashing around with water. Individual or communal water tanks are stationed along trafficked routes or simple garden hoses are used, as friends and family gather by the water source to battle each other as well as passersby. Tanks are also filled up on pickup cars, lorries, open buses and onto sidecars of motorbikes, all cruising slowly around with a full load of cheerful cavalry ready to battle till tanks are all watered out and need refilling. Scented powder is also used to wish fellow combaters a Happy New Year; “Sawadee Pee Mai” or “Suksan Pee Mai”, as it is said in Thai. As the emphasis has turned to fun and water-throwing rather than the festival’s spiritual and religious aspects, it sometimes prompts complaints from traditionalists. In recent years there have been calls to moderate the festival to lessen the many alcohol-related road accidents, as well as, the use of menthol powder or colouring of water causing minor injuries or those more serious attributed by extreme behavior such as water being thrown in the faces of traveling motorcyclists.
Around the country Buddha images are cleansed at the temples, by a gentle pouring of fragranced water, which is believed to bring good luck and prosperity for the year ahead. The larger shopping centers or chains also provides their Buddha images on display for the same procedure and in many cities, such as Chiang Mai the Buddha images from all of the city’s important monasteries are paraded through the streets so that people can toss water at them, ritually ‘bathing’ the images, as they pass by on ornately decorated floats. In northern Thailand, people may carry handfuls of sand to their neighbourhood monastery in order to recompense the dirt that they have carried away on their feet during the rest of the year. The sand is then sculpted into piles and decorated with colorful flags. Some people make New Year resolutions – to refrain from bad behavior, or to do good things as Songkran is a time for cleaning and renewal.
The throwing of water originated as a way to pay respect to people, by capturing the water after it had been poured over the Buddhas for cleansing and then using this “blessed” water to give good fortune to elders and family by gently pouring it on their shoulder or over their hands. Among young people the holiday evolved to include dousing strangers with water to relieve the heat, since April is the hottest month in Thailand (temperatures can rise to over 100°F or 40°C on some days). This has further evolved into water fights and splashing water over people riding in vehicles.
Songkran is also celebrated in many places with a pageant in which young women demonstrate their beauty and unique talents, as judged by the audience. The level of financial support usually determines the winner, since, to show your support you must purchase floral necklaces which you place on your chosen girl.
Although the calendar like most of Asia utilizes a lunar calendar in sanskrit it was named sankranta and meant “a move or change” – actually it was the movement of the Sun into the zodiac formation of Aires, which happens between March and April, and surprisingly seems to bear out parallel to the Easter celebration in the western Pagan and Christian festivals. So, when our Anglo Saxon ancestors were slapping on the wood and dancing naked around Stonehenge, it is comforting to know that our cousins in Thailand were doing something similar
May 5th (Public Holiday): Coronation Day
Commemorating the coronation of the 9th King of the Chakri Dynasty; King Bhumibol Adulyadejin in 1950.
May 28th (Public Holiday): Visakha Bucha Day
Wan Visakha Bucha, informally called “Buddha’s Birthday” though, encompassing the full circle of Buddha Gautama’s birth, enlightenment and passing. To celebrate this day Thai people gives morning offerings to monks and gather at temples all over the Kingdom towards the evening, where they walk 3 times, symbolizing the 3 cycles of life, around the temple with burning candles, fire of life.
Holiday Weather April – June
April is the hottest month of the year with temperatures averaging between 25-40°C. It also ends the dry season. The month predicts a 46% chance of having a partly cloudy day, rain showers and thunderstorms. However, these rains may be very local, often in the evening and over in a short time, or they may be ongoing for a few days. Humidity is high at around 80% and the chance of a really windy day is a mere 1%, though towards the end of the month, the breeze picks up slightly. The ocean is changing, with days of calm waters and those of rough sea, as the waves are building up. (Caution whilst swimming recommended.)
May is a month where the ocean serves waves and the sun is still partly shining with a 57% chance of having a partly cloudy day, rain showers and thunderstorms. The temperature stays hot with a 50% chance of a hot day (over 32°C), the monthly average being 26-35°C. Though, the humidity stays high, averaging 85%, month of May sees more breeze which clears the air. (Remember to wear sun block even if the days are cloudy as the sun is just as effective and apt to burn especially as there is less thought of keeping in the shade.)
June is when surf’s up! These months Phuket attracts surfers from all over the world, whom can been seen waiting for the waves out at sea off several of the West Coast beaches. The humidity lessens, averaging 75% and gentle winds make the days seem cooler with the average temperature of 25-31°C and 67% chance of a cloudy day, with or without rain and thunderstorms. (On days of big surf, be aware of strong undercurrents.)
Mid Season Activities
GOLF ~ for those passionate about golf, which is ideal with the cooler temperatures offered in the 2nd quarter of the year, do take a moment to hear our Absolute Chairman, Mr Bryan Lunt talk about the different courses in Phuket, and around the country.
>>> Watch video 1 >>>
>>> Watch video 2 >>>
SURFING ~ Phuket shows good ratings for beginner / intermediate surfing at several of the islands beaches, offering a “beach break” course, explaining the conditions for those more in the loop. If the thought of standing on board, riding the waves, seems intimidating good fun may also be had by boogie boarding or just plain bodysurfing. Basic equipment rental can be found at most beaches though those wanting go a bit more advanced tend
RAFTING ~ an adventure that may not be fully enjoyed over the high season as the waters in the rivers are not as rich as they are when the rains have started to fill up the natural reserves and by thus offering an thrilling white water joyride!