Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Loi Krathong, 28 November 2012

Today Thailand is celebrating Loi Krathong and I wanted to share my first Krathong making experience experience with you. 

Every year Thailand  celebrates a beautiful experience of Loi Krathong - probably the most picturesque and beautiful of all Thai celebrations. The annual event falls on the night when the tides are at their highest and the moon at its brightest - the full moon night of the 12th lunar month, which is usually in mid- or end of November.

In the evening, people send their hand-made or purchased krathongs (translates roughly as "floating basket") down the river after lighting the candles and incense and making a wish for the coming year.  It is said that the wish will come true if the candle remains lit until the basket passes out of sight, and also that the longer the candle remains lit the better the coming year will be.

Originally, the krathong was made of banana leaves or the layers of the trunk of a banana tree or a spider lily plant. A krathong contains food, betel nuts, flowers, joss sticks, candle and coins. Nowadays kratongs are much more creative as many more materials are available. 

Yesterday we went with friends and kids to Sweet Sisters Cafe in the south of Samui, where they held Krathong making workhop. The krathong making process was a great fun, I tried it first time in my life, but the results was much better than I expected :-) 

Today most of Samui people will gather in Chaweng Lake and release their Krathongs to the water of the lake. Some people go to the seaside, but Chaweng Lake is the main point of celebrations. 

Some pictures from our krathong-making workshop:

All these beautiful krathongs were made yesterday in Sweet Sisters cafe by local Samui people, Thais and foreigners, and I think it's a great learning experience for both kids and adults. We enjoyed it a lot!!

And we will let them go tonight....

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Rain, rain go away...

Rainy season is back on Samui. 3 days in the row it rains, rains and rains. My son's school is closed ( Panyadee),  the roads are not too good, and it's just very depressing in general.
Really hoping it will go away soon and sun will be back here again in  no time!

A few photos and videos from the last 3 days.

Monday, 5 November 2012

Samui Webcam and current weather

Today I would like to spread the word and introduce a great new website with Samui Webcams:

It's a brainchild of my friend Matt and the quality is amazing, the best I have actually seen here.

So, now you can see Samui very clearly and in the few different points in Chaweng, Lamai, Bang Po.... Also it helps when you want to know about the weather in Samui. 

Talking about the weather - it's mostly sunny here, with some rains here and there in the previous few days, especially in the evening... yesterday was an exceptionally cloudy and rainy day ( at least in Maenam), the rain was not heavy at all, more like a drizzle, but still it was a pretty wet day. 

Today it's all nice again, some fluffy clouds out there, but still plenty of sunshine! 

Don't forget that I update the weather nearly daily on our villa booking website  
Even when I am not in Samui - my staff and friends supply me with the info and daily picture, so the page gets regularly updated. 

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Back in Samui + new Vikasa Yoga.

Hello everyone, I am very happy to be back here, in Samui and in my Samui blog after a summer in London.

A few things have happened here while I was away....

My favourite Vikasa Yoga moved to a new absolutely unreal stunning location, my good friends Bonnie and Ian have opened a long awaited yoga studio in Fishermans Village in Bophut ( I still haven't visited it yet though, so will let you know about it later) , the Montessori school was opened in Bophut, organic dairy shop Lucky Cow has changed the management and added some new very yummy products to their already fantastic range, a few more lovely villas have been built, huge Central Shopping Mall was opened in Suratthani, Bangkok Airways started flying to Kuala Lumpur, and I heard some rumours about possibility of building an airport in Donsak ( if someone doesn't know where Donsak is - this is the place the ferries leave to Samui from).
Probable that's about it....Oh, and the best news is that Bangkok Airways decided to "postpone their price increase", so they will do it after high season... really nice of them, isn't it?

Otherwise the life is going on here in the same way, my son has just started in Panyadee school, which is lovely,  my beautiful garden has almost died during the summer ( 3 months no government water in Samui and I didn't have a tank with a pump), but now it's recovering as it started to rain here nearly on a daily basis, and the water is gradually coming back.

Today I am going to show you some photos of a new Vikasa studio, which is not just a studio any longer, it's the whole resort with the rooms for those who are staying there.
Vikasa now located after Chaweng Noi, in Coral Cove area, one of the most beautiful spots in Samui. They were oficially opened a short while ago, the monks gave them the blessings, and the classes started. They will also have a retreat coming soon 23-30 december 2012, I will let you know more after the photos. Enjoy!

Now a few more words about the retreat they are having.

Start date : 23 December 2012, finish 30 December ( just in time for you to enjoy New Year!)

This is an introduction to Vikasa Yoga retreat, suitable for all levels of practice, whether you are considering taking a longer course at Vikasa, or would just like to shape up before the new year. This is a rare opportunity to practice all-week long with the founder of Vikasa Yoga – Konstantin Miachin, as he has been extremely busy during the last year opening the Vikasa Retreat center, leading teacher training courses, and presenting at yoga events around the world, it was really difficult to catch him teaching regular classes throughout the year.

This course is totally suitable for beginners, and for long time practitioners as well. You will receive a lot of personal attention during this course, and a personal program can be tailored for you upon request by Konstantin upon completion of the course.

What you will learn:

Fundamentals of Vikasa Yoga methodology
Alignment principles of asana that can be applied to any practice afterwards
Breathing fundamentals – how to maximize your breathing potential and connect it with the rest of your practice.
Basic Vikasa Yoga sequences
Core salutations

Complete info
If you register before November 1st, you will get 20% discount.  Good present for X-mas IMHO.

Have a great day, everyone!!!!!  We are so happy the dreadful forecast has changed and instead of 99mm or rain we got sun today! :-) Even the best forecasts are no always right :-)

Friday, 10 August 2012

Emirates to start direct flights to Phuket in December

Posted on August 3rd, 2012 by Phuket Observer in Travel
Emirates Airlines continues its network expansion with the announcement of the start of daily flights to Phuket. Phuket will become Emirates’second destination in Thailand.
Operated by a three-class Airbus aircraft, EK378 will depart Dubai at 1245hrs and arrive at Phuket International Airport at 2155hrs. The return flight, EK379 will depart at 0035hrs the following day and arrive at Dubai International Airport at 0435hrs.
“Emirates is looking forward to the launch of our non-stop, daily service to Phuket, which will be just in time for the holiday season. We have always had a strong affiliation with Thailand and have been operating flights to Bangkok since 1990,” said Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline.
“Thailand is an important market for Emirates, we currently operate four daily flights between Dubai and Bangkok, including one with our Airbus A380 aircraft. We are confident that Phuket will prove a popular destination for our passengers, especially those from the UAE, Middle East and Europe,” added Mr Clark.
Phuket will become the 15th route launch for the airline this year and the second in South East Asia following on from Ho Chi Minh City in June.
Emirates Holidays, the airline’s tour operating arm, offers tailor made holidays to Phuket, that include a hand-picked selection of five, four and three star hotels.
Emirates offers its customers in all cabins meals prepared by gourmet chefs, award-winning service from the airline’s international cabin crew recruited from over 120 countries, as well as ice, the airlines’ entertainment system which offers over 1,400 channels of entertainment and the facility to send and receive emails and text messages. With a fleet of 178 aircraft and already the largest A380 operator in the world, with 22 in service, Emirates currently flies to 125 destinations in 74 countries.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Vikasa yoga teacher training 15 April-13 May

Some time ago, in November, I wrote about an opening of a new yoga studio - Vikasa

Today, after being a loyal member of this place from the day one, and after watching daily studio life, I want to share with you one of the most incredible journey, which I have ever witnessed in Samui (pity - couldn't join) - Vikasa first yoga teacher training 15 April - 13 May

For those who didn't read my post before - Vikasa Yoga in Koh Samui, Thailand is a boutique yoga studio and raw food organic restaurant, created by Konstantin Miachin and a team of professionals.

Although this might be hard to believe, this is the only open-air yoga studio in Koh Samui at the moment, located in a beautiful Zen Garden, between Chaweng and Bo Phut, just opposite Makro supermarket on ring road.

Konstantin is an international yoga teacher and founder of Vikasa Yoga studio.  He has been passionately learning, practicing, and teaching Yoga for over six years, and his passion has lead him to search out his own personal development throughout the world, with many different schools and masters all over the world, in places such as Rishi-kesh, Uttar Kashi, Gangotri, Kerala, Goa, Canada, Thailand, Hong Kong and Ukraine to name a few. He has completed teacher trainings in three different disciplines, including Ashtanga Vinyasa, Yoga 23 (by master Andrei Siderski) and Sivananda.

That's what our typical daily class looks like (well, a bit slower than that, but you get the idea :-)

This first Vikasa Yoga Teacher Training at Koh Samui, Thailand welcomed 26 amazing people from all over the world as the students. Like the relaxing pace of the island life style, it went by smooth with teachers and students getting closer with one another. There is a great deal of respect between all of them. There were many nice relationships developing, and also amusing, or provocative interactions amongst them all.

For four weeks they’ve been working really hard on practice, anatomy, and philosophy.
Amongst the students there was a very talented photographer, R2. She was daily documenting and producing an amazing album of group classes and everyone’s Asana, she also took a camera with her while going to the beach at Chaweng Noi for sunrise pranayama and swim.

Here’s some photos from her amazing album, which the studio let me share with you,  and by the way - the next Yoga Alliance Certified 200 Hour Teacher Training in Vikasa studio will be taking place September 16 – October 14, 2012.

 Wasn't it amazing?.......  I think it truly was...