June 2015 (Newsletter)

Hpa An Lodge, HPA AN, Kayin State

DIAMOND NGAPALI HOTEL
he HPAN An Lodge is located in Kayin State in eastern Burma between Mawlamyaing and the Thai border; it offers in a green Cottages 18 spacious decorated and furnished in a mix of modern and traditional style; at the foot of the famous mountain Zwegabin and Hpa An entry, the eco-lodge offers a pleasant and relaxing atmosphere in the surrounding nature; The service and the food are excellent; the lodge also offers a swimming pool and is the best address to stay during your discovery of the Kayin State.

Novotel Max, YANGON

GREEN RESTAURANT MANDALAY

Located between Yangon Airport and the historic center of the city, Novotel Yangon Max is close to Shwedagon Pagoda and embassies. This new 5 star just recently opened in March 2015 and offers 366 contemporary rooms with Wi-Fi and a variety of dining with 3 restaurants, 4 bars and room service 24/24. Customers Executive Floors enjoy additional benefits and access to the Premier Lounge. Last fitness center art, spa, yoga room, pool and tennis court. Located on Pyay Road, Novotel Yangon Max is a short walk from Junction Square Shopping Centre and 30 minutes drive from Yangon International Airport. This 366 room hotel is the ideal choice for business and leisure travelers.

Novotel Inle Resort, INLE LAKE


Since the recent opening of Burma, Accor is redeveloping with strength in the country with the opening of the Novotel Yangon, M-Gallery in the administrative capital of Nay Pyi Daw and Novotel Inle Resort in last October 2014.
Novotel Inle Resort enjoys a prime location on the East shore of Inle Lake; built in a contemporary style, offering all the elegance and comfort of a 4 star establishment, the Novotel Resort is one of the few hotels on the lake to enjoy a heated pool as well as a conference room; the resort has 62 junior suites, 57 villas on the lake and 2 Presidential Suites.

The Sanctum Inle Resort , INLE LAKE


Sanctum Inle Resort will open its doors in July 2015; it is ideally located on the east bank of Inle Lake; the main building reflects the architecture of a monastery in a large green compound with separate villas near by the lake; the whole hotel offers a peaceful and intimate setting. The hotel will soon have a spa and a swimming pool; the rooms are spacious, decorated with elegance; the terraces made with three levels overlook at the gardens and the lake; Sanctum Inle Resort is a recommended address for a stay at Inle Lake in a pleasant, relaxing and elegant atmosphere.

Thanakha Inle Hotel, NYAUNG SHWE


Tanakha hotel opened its doors in March 2015, located in Nyaung Shwe, the town where to take boats to access to Inle Lake; at the shore of the Nyaung Shwe channel, Thanakha Inle Hotel offers 29 rooms, spacious, nicely furnished and decorated; in the coming weeks, the roofs will welcome an outdoor restaurants and bar. The hotel offers a pleasant atmosphere for a stay at Inle Lake, well located in Nyaung Shwe and on the way to Inle Lake, in a modern and warm setting style.

Royal Kalaw Hills Resort, KALAW


The main house built in 1898 of this newly refurbished bootique hotel was completely renovated in its original style; the all renovation gives to the lodge a lot charm and quietude; The Royal kalaw Hills set in manicured flowered gardens with 14 rooms combines style, mordernity and comfort such as air conditioning or access to Wi-Fi; a restaurant, a spa and two terraces overlooking the gardens will make a stay at Royal Kalaw Hills Resort more than agreadable to enjoy some days to discover Kalaw and its surroundings.

Royal Kalaw Hills Resort, KALAW

In recent months, the fees of few sites have increased in a significant way, such as:

Shwedagon Pagoda from Kyats 5000 to 8000, about USD 8
Sule Pagoda from USD 2 to USD 3
Bothataung Pagoda from USD 2 to USD 3
Bagan from USD 15 to USD 20,

Furthermore the airport tax for domestic flights from Yangon, Mandalay and Naypyidaw increased from 1,000 to 2,000 Kyats, about USD 2

Credit cards accepted by Think Asia Travel & Tours

Think Asia now accepts payment by Visa or MasterCard credit card an addition of a 4% surcharge to reflect the costs of banking operations.

WALKING AROUND MANDALAY

GENTLE WALIKING TOUR IN MANDALAY


The hilly area of Sagaing, 25 kilometers far from Mandalay is considered as the hearth of the Buddhist faith in Mandalay where plenty of monasteries are located among the mountain chain facing at the Irrawaddy River. Sagaing is also one of the ancient capital city with a rich historical past not too miss when visiting Mandalay.

To enjoy a gentle walk in Sagaing will give you another approach of this site, authentic and typical where the majority of tourists usually do not go.
Sagaing is located at 45 minutes drive from Mandalay; you will cross the Irrawaddy river on the main bridge, a massive metallic structure bridge opened in 2008 and next to this bridge, you will see a second one built during the British time and still in use nowadays.

The drive will bring you to the highest part of the Sagaing Hills, named Padamya Hill where your walk will start at Padamya Zedi. From the monastery, you can enjoy beautiful sceneries over the Irrawaddy and the countryside. Then, your walk will bring you along clear but sometime steep paths from a monastery to another one in a peaceful environment and dense vegetation. You will have a first stop at Asshae Pakarama Monastery, an old wooden monastery surrounded by well maintain gardens, a peaceful location for a break where you will visit in the compound a cave carved out of the rock for the monks to meditate in a cool and peaceful place; from a terrace located at the second cave level, you can observe the trees and particularly, frangipanis, flamboyant and huge tamarind trees ; after this pleasant stop, your walk will bring you to U Min Thonzae and Swan Oo Pyone Shin temples where you can also enjoy scenic views along the Irrawaddy and Sagain Hills; after some steep parts during the first part of the walk, you will then walk down hill along a tiny mountain road looking at monastery complexes along the way until you reach an intersection with the road to Mingun where your car is waiting for you; The entire walk with the visit at few monasteries is around 5 kilometers and takes 3 hours; it is preferable to make the walk early in the morning or in the afternoon around 4pm to enjoy the sunset. This walk will bring you out of the beaten paths where usually tourists are very few and you will enjoy the serenity and the sightseeing on the way in a quiet environment.

MAY 2014 (Newsletter)

ORIENTAL BALLOONING

BALLOON FLIGHT IN MANDALAY

For the first time in Mandalay, a newly launched Oriental Ballooning Company is offering balloons flights service from last December 2013 till last March 2014 and will restart operation by October 2014. The balloons are made by the UK’s largest and longest-established balloon manufacturer, Cameron Balloons, and are inspected and maintained to the highest standards by certified Balloon Inspectors working to standards set by the UK Civil Aviation Authority.

The company has total six balloons, among them two balloons can carry four passengers each and the remaining four balloons can carry eight passengers each. It will also be expanding balloons flight operations to Bagan and Inle Lake very soon. The company hired experienced British pilots and they are UK Commercial Balloon pilot licensed holders. International insurance also covered for the passengers. Oriental Ballooning is a subsidiary of Amata Group, which is currently doing Amata Resort and Spa in Ngapali beach and Amata Garden Resort in Inle Lake. The balloons launches just before sunrise, subject to suitable weather conditions and the price is US$ 300 per person, according to the company.

MYANMAR LIFE HOTEL

YANGON AIRPORT HOTEL

For those who have few hours to spend between 2 flights connection at Yangon Airports but do not want necessarily drive to the city center, the Myanmar Life Hotel offers a perfect place to take some rest with no stress and enjoy the swimming pool at few minutes’ drives from the Airport.

MANN YADANARPON AIRLINES


Mann Yadanarpon Airlines is a privately owned domestic airline based in Mandalay International Airport with IATA code 7Y. The airline began operations on February, 2014 with one aircraft, a brand new ATR 72 – 600 providing flights to 7 destinations. The airline has ordered a second ATR 72-600 to complete her fleet soon as well an Airbus A-320 to develop regional flights after two years operations period.

Website: www.airmyp.com

ARIENDAMAR HOTEL


Areindamar hotel is a newly opened hotel in Bagan after an entire renovation in November 2012. The hotel is located in New Bagan area. The property offers 50 large and nicely decorated Deluxe rooms with facilities such as wifi Internet connection, safety box, coffee making facilities, 24 hours room service. The interior hotel compound offer privacy with magnificent trees as well as a beautiful swimming pool. Among the 50 rooms, 36 are located in the main building and 12 in a new annex opposite to the hotel; Areindmar Hotel is managed by Tarabar group of hotels.

BLUE BIRD HOTEL


Blue Bird is a nice small lodge in the New Bagan area with 24 deluxe rooms; The large rooms and the swimming pool are set in tropical gardens giving a very private atmosphere, a kind of Oasis in Bagan to relax in a peaceful and private environment

ZFREETI HOTEL


Zfreeti hotel has newly opened in last December 2013 and is conveniently located in the heart of Nyaung Oo, the small provincial town of Bagan area; the hotel has a total of 102 rooms in different rooms categories, deluxe, Superior, Standard and Suites; Internet wifi access, swimming pool, payment by credit (Visa and Master) are among the services available at the hotel with a restaurant located at the rooftop.

April 2014 (Newsletter)

NGAPALI BEACH WHERE TO STAY

There are few resorts which have opened in Ngapali Beach the last couple of years; among them, some offer a very pleasant retreat to enjoy a beach as per below listed.

DIAMOND NGAPALI HOTEL

DIAMOND NGAPALI HOTEL
The new hotel opened in 2012 is located at the end of the beach close to the fishermen villages; The hotel can be classified as a 2 stars resort and offer 24 nice spacious rooms either with separate or attached side by side bungalows with Beach front or garden view; the hotels offers good facilities as swimming pool, Wi-Fi access, air conditioning in the rooms, a large front beach deck; The Diamond Ngapali Hotel is a very pleasant place to enjoy holidays in Ngapali with reasonable room rates.

NGAPALI BAY VILLAS AND SPA

GREEN RESTAURANT MANDALAY

The Ngapali Bay offers a beautiful retreat in a very private environment with manicure gardens and exclusive well decorated and spacious villas. The Resort offer 32 Villas and deluxe rooms, with the villas facing the sea among a wild and tropical gardens; All facilities are provided like Wi-Fi access, swimming pool, spa, a refined cuisine served by an Australian Chef; the hotel accepts payment by Visa and Master credit cards;
The Ngapali Bay Villas & Spa offers a peaceful retreat in stylish environment.

THINGAHA NGAPALI


The Thingaha Resort is one of the very last Resort opened in last October 2013; The Resort offers high class accommodation in a refined and tasteful contemporary decoration; The hotels has 51 rooms and among them, the most beautiful ones are the Ocean View Suites with large terrace and private swimming pool; The hotel has a very impressive swimming pool at the edge of the beach and propose all modern facilities like Wi-Fi, air conditioning, 24 hour room service, payment by credit cards as Visa, Amex, Master, Dinners Club and JCB.

JADE MARINA AND SPA


The Jade Marina Resort and Spa was opened recently in 2013 with 40 rooms, villas and deluxe rooms. The villas are two story buildings to provide a scenic view on the beach front and ocean; rooms are spacious furnished in an elegant and modern design; A large swimming pool and A Spa are among the facilities proposed at the Jade Marina as 24 hours Reception and room service.

THE RESIDENCE BY SANDOWAY


Newly established as an extension of the famous and exclusive resort, The Sandoway Resort, The Residence by Sandoway is situated directly on the beach at few minutes’ walk-away from The Sandoway Resort.
The Residence consists of 14 rooms, 6 rooms with beach view and direct beach access and 8 rooms with garden view. Breakfast basket is served every morning to the rooms and guests can use other facilities (restaurant, spa, cinema, library, swimming pool) directly at the Sandoway Resort.

NOVEMBER 2013 (Newsletter)

BAGAN LODGE


With stylized tenting and furnishings, Bagan Lodge’s 85 rooms and suites is the new luxury address for a stay in the famous Bagan Archaeological Complex.

Conceptualized by French designer Brigitte Dumont de Chassart, the interiors and grounds of Bagan Lodge combine traditional Burmese design, colonial-era trappings and contemporary decor. Three classes of accommodation range in size from 538-square-foot deluxe rooms to the 2,110-square-foot Queen Victoria Suite, which includes four bedrooms, a living room and private garden.

Bagan Lodge also has an open-air restaurant, Tiffin Box, as well as a spa with eight private treatment rooms, and a swimming pool.

Situated 186 miles southwest of Mandalay, Bagan Lodge is operated by Apple Tree Asia, a hospitality group that owns and manages a collection of boutique properties in Southeast Asia.

KYI TIN HOTEL MANDALAY

KYI TIN HOTEL MANDALAY
The Kyi Tin Hotel is a completely renovated hotel sitting on two acres of landscaped gardens. Kyi Tin Hotel is situated right in the heart of Mandalay city, from five blocks south of Mandalay Royal Palace & few minutes’ walk from central railway station.

Kyi Tin Hotel has 19 Superior Bungalow with Balcony, 10 Deluxe Rooms, 3 Junior Suite Rooms and 1 Kyi Tin Suite Bungalow. All rooms are equipped with modern and comfortable facilities

GREEN RESTAURANT MANDALAY

GREEN RESTAURANT MANDALAY
The Green Restaurant is a new nice restaurant recently opened in Mandalay at Kandawgyi Lake under the same management as the Monsoon Restaurant in Yangon; it is a new elegant and comfortable outlet proposing a wide range of Myanmar, Chine, Thai and Western food. The Green Restaurant has a capacity of 150 seats for indoor dining and 400 seats for outdoor dining in the garden with lake view.

HOTEL YADANARBON MANDALAY


Located in Central Mandalay, Hotel Yadanarbon is a new Standard 2 stars hotel offering comfortable, clean and modern rooms at reasonable rate. With its convenient location, the hotel offers easy access to the city’s must-see destinations.

Hotel Yadanarbon offers facilities as room service, airport transfers, babysitting. All guest accommodations feature amenities such Wifi access, min-bar, air conditioning.

Nor-air
NOK AIR TO FLY BANGKOK TO YANGON AND MAE SOT TO MAWLAMYINE

Nok Air, a Thai regional airline is the latest international company to operate services to Yangon from Bangkok four times a week since the 1st November 2013.

Nok Air is also operating since 1 September 2013, daily connections Mae Sot / Mawlamyine in Mon State and Mae Sot / Yangon.

BANGKOK / YANGON
Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday
DD4230 06:30/07:15

YANGON/BANGKOK
Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday
DD4231 08:00/09:15

MAE SOT/YANGON
Daily flight
DD4226 11:35/12:00

YANGON/MAE SOT
Daily flight
DD4227 12:30/13:55

MAE SOT/MAWLAMYINE
Daily flight
DD4212 09:45/09:40

MAWLAMYINE/MAE SOT
Daily flight
DD4213 10:05/11:05

June 2013 (Newsletter)

FXB SHOW ROOM

FXB Association was recently relocated to a more vast showroom close to Shwedagon junction. The association focuses on aid by providing HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment, counseling, vocation training for poor and marginalized women and children who produce a large choice of handmade items.

Metal lamps, candle holders, wooden toys, furniture, fabric for interior design, purses, scarves are some of the handicrafts produced. By making an appointment in advance, it is also possible to visit the FXB workshops where are provided the training programs on wood, metal, weaving and sewing

FXB Products Outlet,
Hnin Si Myaing Residence,
21 Kabar Aye Pagoda Road, Bahan Township, Yangon
Open from 9am to 5pm (closed on Sundays)

FXB International Website: www.fxb.org

POMELO

pamiloPomelo is another social project to provide a faire trade market place for small Myanmar producers opening opportunities for them to improve their social and economic situation.
The large variety of handcrafts is all using local materials. The local artisans produce quality, handmade products with a contemporary twist.

Pomelo handcrafts producers include HIV sufferers, street youths, mentally and physically disabled persons, and small family businesses fighting poverty.

The showroom is located above Monsoon Restaurant, 85-87 Thein Byu Road in Yangon, open every day from 10:00am till 9:00pm.

THE FINE ART INSTITUE OF YANGON

The State Fine Art School previously called Chin Tsong Palace was the lavish mansion of Lim Chin Tsong, a shipping and rubber merchant. The house was built in 1915 in a blend of European and Chinese architecture. During World War II, the Japanese army used the property as a radio station. After independence, it became a hotel and then the building became attached to the Ministry of Culture. Nowadays, the Fine Art School hosts around 60 students. The place is generally not opened to the public but with an appointment in advance, it is possible to make a visit which gives a great opportunity to discover the incredible architecture from inside the building but also the workshop where the students learn the techniques of painting as well as a permanent exhibition to displayed the paintings produces by the students.
At the first floor, there are some fresco painted by Ernest and Dod Procter, famous British couple of painters from the beginning of the XX century.

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LA MAISON 20

La Maison 20 is a newly established restaurant in Yangon, at midway between the city center and the airports. It is a good address for tasting an authentic Myanmar food in a cozy colonial style dining. La Maison 20 is decorated in an elegant mixed of classic and contemporary style and offers the possibility to enjoy dining in private rooms or in the gardens during the dry season.

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HOME 23

New restaurant in Nyaung Shwe, the small town at the edge of Inle Lake; The restaurant is managed by Inle Princess Resort and located just in the heart the small city; Food is tasty and homemade and it is a perfect place for a break. The restaurant proposed a range of homemade bakery like croissants, but also fresh coffee, ice cream and homemade cheese and is large enough to welcome individuals or groups. The restaurant hosts regular photos exhibitions and will soon accommodate a SPA.

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March 2013 (Newsletter)

RAZAGYIO HOTEL IN BAGAN

Razagyio Hotel is a 40 rooms hotel located in New Bagan, close to the main temples attractions and 10 kilometers from the airport. The building was totally refurbished and reopened in December 2012. The hotel has 34 Superior rooms and 6 deluxe rooms, with air conditioning, spacious and comfortable with modern facilities. Wifi connection is available in the entire building; Facilities such 24 hours room service, Satellite TV, swimming pool are available.

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SHWE YEE PYINT HOTEL IN BAGAN

Shwe Yee Pwint Hotel is an elegant small boutique hotel situated in New Bagan. The existing building was totally refurbished and reopened under the new hotel name of Shwe Yee Pwint in September 2012.

The hotel and accommodations offer a charming atmosphere. The 33 rooms, 14 Superior and 19 Deluxe are nicely designed with elegant decoration; rooms are spacious and nicely furnished; Facilities like Wifi connection, separate bath tap and showers are available in all rooms. The hotel has a swimming pool and equipped with conference facilities. The property is located at short distances from the main temples, 10 kilometers from the airport and 12 kilometers from Nyaung Oo.

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OASIS HOTEL IN BAGAN

Small charming hotel of 15 rooms located close to Nyaung Oo. The hotel was totally renovated and reopened recently in December 2012. Rooms are cozy and elegant with modern facilities; the hotel has a total of 10 superior and 5 deluxe rooms. Surrounded by manicured gardens, the hotel offers a peaceful retreat, close to the city center of Nyaung Oo, as well as the temples. Wifi Internet is available in the roomS and AT the reception area. Ownership and management are the same as Tharabar Gate and Ariendmar Hotels in Bagan.

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AUNG THA PYAY HOTEL YANGON

Aung Tha Pyay Hotel has recently opened in the heart of Yangon, close to the Sule Pagoda and the Independence monument. The hotel has 35 rooms; most of them are Standard rooms, with a family room and a Suite room. Rooms have air conditioning, hot water, mini-bar, IDD telephone for International phone calls, flat screen TV. Wifi Internet connection is accessible at the lobby. The hotel serves breakfast only but does not propose meals for lunch or dinner. The hotel, to be classified in Standard category, is conveniently located in the city center at walking distance from the historical sites of interest such as the various colonial building around the area.

AVENUE 64 HOTEL YANGON

Avenue 64 Hotel is a new trendy 34  rooms hotel opened in February 2013 and located 10 minutes driving from the International and domestic airports. Rooms are spacious, elegant with modern design and facilities. The hotel is a perfect address for leisure or business guests to stay overnight before a connecting flight or for a day-use. The top floor has a large fitness center with modern equipments. Lounge, Jacuzzi and Sauna are also available as well as a meeting room. A swimming pool will be ready by end of 2013. Wifi connection is available in the rooms and Internet access at the business center.

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MORE INTERNATIONAL AIRLINES TO FLY TO MANDALAY

Air Asia was the first International airlines carrier to operate direct flights from Bangkok to Mandalay in last January 2013. Myanmar Airways International has now followed recently by launching a daily connection between both cities.

Thai Airways will soon also start to operate a 4 times a week flight to Mandalay from Bangkok by the 31st of March 2013

Below are the flights schedules from/to Mandalay to/from Bangkok:


MAI

Flight

Days

From

To

Departure

Arrival

8M 335

Daily

Mandalay

Bangkok

08:25

10:45

8M 336

Daily

Bangkok

Mandalay

06:15

07:35

Air Asia

Flight

Days

From

To

Departure

Arrival

FD 2761

Daily

Mandalay

Bangkok

12:50

15:15

FD 2760

Daily

Bangkok

Mandalay

10:55

12:20

Thai Airways

Days

From

To

Departure

Arrival

Sun, Tue, Wed, Fri, Sat

Bangkok

Mandalay

07:30

08:55

Sun, Tue, Wed, Fri, Sat

Mandalay

Bangkok

09:35

12:00

 

 

Travel Newsletter (December 2012)

With the recent moves in Myanmar to led a resurgence of both tourism and business interest in the country, many airline carriers have launched or increase services to Myanmar to face the growing demand.

Dragon Air

Dragon Air is set to become the latest carrier to tap into Myanmar market, with planned 4 weekly Hong Kong – Yangon Airbus A321 service, starting the 9th of January 2013.

There will be 24 seats in Business Class and 148 in economy.  The flight will leave Hong Kong on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays at 2120 for a 2335 arrival in Myanmar’s capital. The return leg, meanwhile, will depart at 0100 on Mondays, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturdays and touch down at Hong Kong at 0600.

Golden Myanmar Airline

Golden Myanmar Airlines is the latest company to join the Myanmar domestic Airline Industry. Golden Myanmar will launch its first flight Yangon Mandalay route on the 11th January 2013 nine times a week using an Airbus A320 with 180 economy seats.

Golden Myanmar has adopted for a low cost model to offer a Kyats 27 000 airfare when other airlines charge Kyats 80 000 for a Yangon Mandalay flight.

A second Airbus A320 will be added soon. Golden Airlines plans to add one new aircraft every six months and to extend his network to the rest of the ASEAN region, the Middle East, Europe, the USA and Australia in the next few years.

LA MAISON BIRMANE

La Maison Birmane is a new small charming Inn located in the small town of Nyaung Shwe at the edge of Inle Lake. It consists of 3 spacious bungalows and one villa with two bedrooms. The bungalows are 35 square meters and the villa, 55 square meters offering 24 hours electricity, Wi–Fi service, room-service, hot and cold water.