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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Restaurant Treasures Bangkok April 2011

It's a tough job but someone has to Thai

As "Aussie Exec Tours Bangkok" rises with popularity so too does the shared smiles and great experiences. 

Editorial by Phillip Smith.  Director AusWaThai
Our guests are amazed at what this Megga city has to offer and quite frankly every outing I get a little "gob smacked" by yet more Gemstones! 

Bangkok is a fountain of wellness, mostly because of the people you meet; the source of synergy and it goes without saying Thai hospitality is unique. 

In April we add a few Restaurants to our treasure map! 

The Long Bar : 5 Star dinning
click on photo to expand

25th flr, a hidden jewel in Bangkok’s crown. It's stylish and elegant and the Panoramic view of the city skyline is all consuming.

The worlds "Longest Table" or slide into a booth with lavish cushions to cuddle up and relax into the evening.   All elements are outstanding.

A cutting edge concept.

Zone: Sukhumvit (Soi 16)

MahaNaga:   5 star dinning
click on photo to expand

I would never have believed this place until I saw it for myself. 

A rose among thorns, rich earthy colours inside and out.  Elegant courtyard, surrounded by cosy dining rooms all offering garden views.

It's a Thai fusion fare at its best. The dishes on offer are clearly the fruit of the chef's creativity and hard work.

Zone: Sukhumvit (Soi 29)

River City BBQ:   3.5 stars + a treat
click on photo to expand 

You'll either love or hate  "Moo Gadaa" (DIY Thai BBQ) - this one is a Diamond.

DIY or menu sets at ridiculous low prices.  
5th flr rooftop view at the Chao Phraya River (priceless views)
The roof is alive with a "tropical garden" which divides the BBQ area from the "Balco Bar" an alfresco rooftop bar where you can enjoy cocktails and jazz music at basement prices. Sink into an outdoor lounge and absorb the view of the river.

The location is a "Travel Spot" directly opposite Millenium Hilton. 

Good news
All venues are logged to a Public Access Tourism Database Bangkok.  
The database (for tour planners) shows functional data such as:-
Intensity, Price Point, Map location Photos, Venue rating, Zone location, Transport methods.

You can view the Database (under construction) at this link
The database is rated "Advanced user", so we added a link to the consumer style search engines.

The Database is a collaborative effort by 
Aussie Exec Tours Bangkok, local travel agents field work by enthusiastic PA's from "Asoke PA", a unique local "Personal Assist (Concierge) service for Tourists. 

"Asoke PA" service was initially for Corporate clients but the cost is so low and great value now everyone is "Getting on Board"

In April we met more special people at the AustCham Sundowner in Bangkok

Andrew Smith, Director of Inovastra:  
  • Accounting Services in Bangkok and Perth WA.  Andrew (WA lad) is a frequent flyer
Brett Gannaway, former Executive Officer of AustCham Thailand
  • WA bread, Bangkok based 17yrs now serving as a Business and Events consultant.

I'm pleased to confirm both are gentlemen and highly qualified for their Portfolios. The social contact at AustCham Sundowners is well known (Bangkoks' number 1 Bis networking event). If your serious about Bis Thailand you have to meet these guys, their skill and knowledge is priceless!  

Visit soon, share Thai Smiles, a memorable experience.   

Friday, April 15, 2011

International Data Roaming costs are sending you broke!

Telstra sign on an Telstra Telephone ExchangeImage via WikipediaWe continue to hear stories of travellers with smartphones (particularly iPhone users) incurring huge data-roaming bills, particularly Telstra customers.

One (big) reason for this is the charging mechanism used by Telstra (Optus also has its problems). Telstra charges 1.5 cents per kilobyte, PLUS a 50c per-data-session flagfall. A data session is a connection from your handset.

There can be (and often are) many simultaneous data sessions running on an iPhone, for instance the default e-mail setting is to check e-mails every minute - that means that even if you don't send or receive e-mails but don't change the settings you will incur a charge of more than 50c each minute.
Image representing iPhone as depicted in Crunc...Image via CrunchBase 
If you leave your phone on whilst roaming for a 16-hour day, that is more than $720 per day, just for (no) e-mail! It makes a mockery of the per-kilobyte charge, as the effective rate jumps up to perhaps as high as 2.5 or more cents per KB when the flagfall is included

People are constantly confused by the topic..  is it a call cost or a data pack cost?
You can actually use one for the other and vice versa - but be warned doing so will either save you a bucket of money or bury you in debt.  They accumulate cost diferently .. see this forum article about the data rate for either and how it is effected by which application you use (ie., talking or surfing the web)
Good News
  For the Aussie Business Exec's travelling to Bangkok
The "Asoke PA" service has set up a bargain deal on Thai Sim cards with Phone and Data Packs!
They can hook you up to include unlimited Internet use for about 15% of the rate you would pay in Australia.   The idea is to switch sim cards on arrival and use the local service.  
Lovebettie at RockFest Stage I 
Apart from the massive savings on net use you will also save huge costs on phone calls
Make sure you have made sure you phone is unlocked so you can switch sim cards.
Asoke PA service is a new concept to provide "Personal Assistants" for busy travellers or those on short term stay. The PA's fastrack everything for you  to ensure a seamless experiencfe; Orientate, Translate and Negotiate.
see more at Asoke PA.

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