Plenty is happening with Pandaw Cruises next year as the premium Asian cruise company celebrates its 20th birthday.
Pandaw teamed up with the luxury Hua Hin, Thailand, beachside hotel – Laksasubha Hua Hin – to host a media and agents function at the Sydney Rugby Club to outline developments.
Australian representative of Pandaw Cruises, John Boyd, discussed with more than 40 members of the travel industry the diverse river cruises Pandaw offers on Asia’s waterways.
Pandaw now operates 15 ships, Boyd said. Most are colonial-style river cruise ships.
A new development entails the purchase of a small steamboat freighter, which will be deployed on the Mergui Archipelao Ranong in Thailand out of Phuket up to Rangoon. At times of the year when heavy rains fall, the vessel could switch to the islands around Bali and Komodo Island and Kalimantan.
General manager and owner of Laksasubha Hua Hin, ML.Laksasubha Kridakon (Lak) outlined details of the re-branding and refurbishment of the popular beachside property and the increasing popularity of Hua Hin, three-hours from Bangkok.
Pandaw River Cruises has been operating on the major rivers of Asia since 1995 and has built up its luxury fleet, modelled on the first Irrawaddy Flotilla Company ships that plied the rivers of Burma from 1865. Today, Pandaw’s ships operate in Burma, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, and from Halong Bay to Hanoi on the Red River in North Vietnam.
Baan Laksasubha Resort Hua Hin is a beachside property comprising 16 two-story villas with 65 rooms within walking distance to the night market and many restaurants. Guest villas are set in their own lush landscaped garden with plenty of space plus a large terrace and bar. The decor reflects the traditional lifestyle influenced by the Thai nobility. The property is currently undergoing a name change to Laksasubha Hua Hin. The new website is www.laksasubhahuahin.com
Boyd pointed out that although it rains more than in October to March, travelling with Pandaw to Burma and Indochina between June to September 2016 has many advantages including lower prices, fewer crowds of tourists, higher water levels and beautiful lush, green landscapes cleansed by the seasonal rains. With the rich blue water and dramatic sunsets, June to September is also a great time for photography.
Also, prices are lower. Pandaw offers the same luxury, all-inclusive experience with all meals, all excursions, free local soft drinks, local beer, local spirits and crew gratuities all included in the price of each Pandaw owned cruise.
Written by Peter Needham