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Countries with the ‘host’ factor

Published June 14, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30370995

Countries with the ‘host’ factor

lifestyle June 14, 2019 01:00

By THE NATION

Thailand, Indonesia, Mexico, Taiwan and India are the top five countries where locals consider hospitality to be in their DNA when comparing experiences of being a guest in their home country and being a guest aboard, according to research conducted by Booking.com across 21,500 travellers from 29 countries.

The website team uncovered what it is about these countries that make them so welcoming while delving into its more than 5.7 million listings of homes, apartments and other unique places to stay, to suggest friendly and inviting places in each of these destinations that have the host factor.

 

Thailand

Across all of the 29 nationalities surveyed, it was respondents from Thailand (85 per cent) who thought their country was more hospitable when compared to others. Most commonly known for its beautiful beaches and temples, it’s the perfect destination for travellers seeking to experience a warm welcome and immerse themselves in the local culture. Thailand also offers many opportunities for visitors to enjoy cultural activities such as experiencing the vibrant hill tribe culture.

Where to stay: If the culture vulture in you is bursting to break free, then Hongkhao Village, located outside the city centre of Chiang Mai, is the perfect accommodation and location for you. It’s a jungle paradise, offering an authentic Lanna culture style stay close to the Mae Ping River. Guests are introduced to the highly recommended and helpful onsite staff who are known for assisting guests with any restaurant reservations and travel recommendations throughout their stays.

Indonesia

Indonesia, home to beautiful volcanic islands and Komodo dragons, will bring out the inner adventurer in everyone as you island hop across this beautiful and exotic destination. Visit the tropical island paradise of Nusa Penida and be mesmerised by the crystal clear waters and abundance of marine life. Hop on a traditional Jukung boat to Medan, the hub for cultural diversity and spend a full day on a private adventure, exploring the remote jungles of Bukit Lawang, learning about the animals and plants and enjoying a jungle lunch with your tour guide. But not only is Indonesia known for all of these, it is also known for its hosting as 83 per cent of Indonesians believe its country is more hospitable than others.

 

Here to stay: Nestled on the beautiful island of Nusa Penida is the Kabeh Jati Garden Villa & Restaurant, your own piece of paradise that you can call home. After a relaxing nights stay in your wooden bungalow, take in the impressive vistas of the emerald waters from your private terrace or balcony. A friendly host will be on hand to arrange car hire so you can explore nearby sites such as the Nusa Penida Harbour and the white sands of Atuh Beach.

 

Mexico

Mexico falls into third place on the list of the countries where locals (77 per cent) believe they are more hospitable than other countries. The capital Mexico City caters to the modern traveler as it features upscale shops, fabulous restaurants to tickle your taste buds and beautiful museums. Mexico is also home to various stunning beaches, majestic mountain ranges, jungles and deserts for the adventurous type. Mexico offers something for every traveller and Mexican hosts are known for going above and beyond to offer their guests a warm welcome.

Where to stay: For a host that exceeds expectations, look no further than the selfcatering apartments of HomFor Napoles. Not only are guests provided with a fully equipped kitchen and a stunning terrace for those who want to enjoy their breakfast in the beautiful sunshine, but the host is also known for being friendly and going above and beyond.

 

Taiwan

Venture to Taiwan and discover why 77 per cent of Taiwanese travellers rated their country as providing the best hospitality. Many people visit Taiwan for its bustling nightlife and famous landmarks such as the Taipei 101, the National Palace Museum and the Shilin night market. But why not swap the hustle and bustle for a breath of fresh air? Take a trip to the idyllic crescent shaped Chishingtan Beach, or a relaxing stroll along the bank of the picturesque Liyu Lake or an adventurous hike through the Taroko National Park.

Where to stay: Located in the city of Hualien, Hualien Wow Hostel provides affordable accommodation, with both private and dormitory rooms and friendly staff offering the best local tips. In fact, Booking.com travellers rated the friendly staff as one of the top things they loved during their stay here. Take advantage of the 24hour front desk where staff can help organise various activities such as snorkelling, rafting, diving and cycling.

 

India

India is the home of cultural and historical hotspots such as the Taj Mahal, an iconic ivorywhite marble mausoleum commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal Emperor, Shah Jahan for his wife Mumtaz Mahal, Amber Palace, a palace constructed of red sandstone and marble and Hawa Mahal, another palace constructed of red and pink sandstone. With all of these interesting and beautiful attractions catering for travellers from around the globe, it’s evident why 75 per cent of Indians believe their country to be more hospitable than most.

Where to stay: If convenience is key, a stay at The Oberoi Grand Kolkata is the place to be. Located in the heart of Kolkata’s shopping and business district, the Oberoi Grand Kolkata offers guests an outdoor pool, gym and spa as a perfect retreat to relax in tranquillity. Once you have soaked in the pool or spent hours in the shopping district, you can splurge in your room where guests are offered 24-hour room service or take a quick trip downstairs to indulge in four fantastic dining options.

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A modern take on old traditions

Published June 14, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30370998

  • From left, Watchanee Mesamarn, Jira Mesamarn, Sobchai Griyoonsen, Tar Mr Team, Surin Yangkhiaosod, and Nives Waewsamana talk about the second edition of Dhipaya Art of Siam.
  • Dhipaya Art of Siam is back for its second year at The National Theatre on August 25.

A modern take on old traditions

lifestyle June 14, 2019 01:00

By Kitchana Lersakvanitchakul
THE NATION

The Dhipaya Art of Siam project once again brings together various performing art forms for a new show in August

Many forms of performing arts in Thailand are under threat today. Considered old-fashioned and irrelevant to the modern lifestyle, they fail to ignite young people’s interest. That started to change last year when the Dhipaya Art of Siam project was launched with the aim of bringing these art forms back to life and keeping them current.

“I shed tears of pleasure when I saw the show,” recalls Watchanee Mesamarn, an expert in Thai dramatic arts at the College of Dramatic Arts for 45 years and senior adviser for this show.

“I was surprised that Dr Somporn [Suebthawilkul, managing director of the main sponsor, Dhipaya Insurance] was so interested in Thai performing arts that he put on Hanuman’s costume and performed on stage between acts. Today I’m more confident than ever that these Thai performing arts will not completely disappear.”

 

Nives “Nueng” Waewsamana, the founder of Baan Tookkatoon Hoonkrabok Thai, agrees. “First of all, I would like to thank the main sponsor bringing forgotten Thai performing arts back to life again. It is very important that conservation and development go hand in hand. We must open our minds and accept the consequences of change. Dhipaya Art of Siam is a stage that can support Thai performing arts to be more sustainable.”

 

Surin “Kru Klae” Yangkhiaosod, a descendant of the original Joe Louis Traditional Thai Puppet Theatre, is all in favour of the initiative, noting that it’s a good opportunity to mix science and art on the same stage.

Dhipaya Art of Siam was created in 2018 by artist Sobchai “Ford” Griyoonsen, the founder of 9 Fox Entertainment, in collaboration with Dhipaya Insurance. Bringing together several forms of traditional arts in one performance, the project launched with “Peree Prab Arin” or “Peree conquers the Greatest Enemy” and focused on the fight between heavenly beings and demons. It introduced two newly created leading characters, Peree and Phaya Vanarin, a white monkey. The plot of the first show was newly written and included good thoughts and morals as well as sacrifice. Fortunately – and quite unexpectedly – the response was excellent and tickets for all four rounds of the show sold out.

 

“I’ve had the chance to be associated with many Thai arts such as khon (masked dance) and puppets and the idea of gathering all of them into one show came into my head. It isn’t easy to see performances of such Thai arts as sword and pole fighting and puppets these days. Kru Klae [Surin Yangkhiaosod], called it ‘prasarnsilp’ (coordination of the arts). It is a fusion of Thai arts with a newly created story and has no negative effect on traditional Thai arts,” Ford Sobchai tells The Nation.

 

“I have co-written a new plot with Kru Nat [Jira Mesamarn], who is the performance director. He is also a director of the Buddhaisawan Sword Fighting Institute in Kanchanaburi and was action director on many period movies such as ‘The Legend of Suriyothai’ and ‘King Naresuan’. We read many textbooks about purana in Indian literature before coming up with the story.

“We had less time putting things together for the first show and didn’t want to take the risk of defaming traditional Thai arts. So, we selected to write a new story but based on the characters from khon and literature. This year, we have had much more time and that allowed us to read and watch the Ramayana and the Ramakien and select some interesting parts that connect with our new plot. We’ve also benefited from the advice of Watchanee Mesamarn at the Fine Arts Department,” he adds.

 

“It was not without its challenges,” Jira acknowledges. “Due to the limitations of Thailand’s classical high art form khon, we maintained the origins of the storyline, dialogue and music, but we made it more colourful by showing both dimensions of Phra Ram. In khon, he maintains his traditional costume but in Indian movies about the Ramayana, he is shown as a human. The two characters are portrayed by different performers. It gives the story more flavour to have Phra Ram performing khon and as a stuntman,” he explains.

 

This second show, which is being staged at The National Theatre on August 25, is titled “Suek Haeng Ong Ramavatar” (“The Battle of Ramavatar”), and is loosely based on the Ramakien, Thailand’s national epic derived from the Hindu epic Ramayana and khon.

 

Sobchai and Jira have brought together a strong production team and cast and written new songs. The performance, they say, will be bigger the better than the first, featuring 10 acts from the birth of Tossakan to the triumph of Phra Ram.

 

“Members of the public and even young people will have no trouble understanding the language. There is a variety of music too, ranging in genres from traditional Thai music and Western music to rock and hip hop. I am confident that this second show will be more exciting than the debut,” says Jira.

 

“We have plenty of surprises for the audience and more special effects such as slings, lasers and stage bombs. We will see greater audience participation too.”

Sobchai agrees, adding: “Our show will be more colourful with good sound and lighting and graphics. The story is newly written but based on the structure of the Ramakien with its original characters. However, we will introduce Phra Ram, Phra Lak and Nang Sida in human form before they transform into their heavenly selves in a performance of Thai classical masked dance khon. It will also feature two bands, Rohitajol and Phetch Jaras Saeng, the latter a very popular contemporary ensemble with a tight schedule but who has generously found time to take part in this show.

Dhipaya Art of Siam will later go on tour to major Thai cities including Khon Kaen and Chiang Mai, and also part in the world puppet festival.

“I call it a ‘playground of Thai arts’. We don’t only encourage young Thais to become interested in Thai arts but are also making these Thai arts more sustainable,” says Ford.

On a stage near you

– “Dhipaya Art of Siam: Suek Haeng Ong Ramavatar” will be staged at The National Theatre on August 25 at 1pm and 5pm.

– Admission is free, but tickets should be reserved by calling (094) 256 9615.

– Audience members must wear yellow shirts in honour of His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn.

An examination of local philanthropy

Published June 14, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30370992

An examination of local philanthropy

lifestyle June 13, 2019 01:00

By THE NATION

While there is much talk of the shrinking of civic space in Southeast Asia, public discussion rarely touches on how this also affects the availability of funding for civil society organisations, in particular those that advocate for human rights.

Last February, SEA Junction launched a series of events and publications focusing on the funding challenges experienced by civil society in the region, with support from the Open Society Foundations (OSF). This initiative named “Wielding the funding strings of civil society in Southeast Asia” was born out of an article with the same title written by SEA Junction’s director, Rosalia Sciortino, for New Mandala.

In the first event of the series, the issues at stake were introduced from the perspective of NGO activists, who spoke about the challenges they encounter in finding funding for their organisations and what could be alternative ways of finding much needed resources. In the second event, the focus was on the same issues, but as experienced by fund raisers, those who try to help find funding for civil society through various means, as resource mobilisation officers, consultants or representatives of intermediary organisations.

The third event is a panel discussion titled “Home-Grown Philanthropy in Southeast Asia: A Bonus for Civil Society?” and takes place at SEA Junction on June 23 at 6pm. It will explore the funding opportunities offered by the robust growth of the home-grown Southeast Asian philanthropic sector and whether these translate into regular and sustainable support to civil society. This is especially in light of the risk-a-verse tendency of home-grown philanthropy, dominated by family corporate foundations and, even more commonly, corporate giving programmes operated through informal or corporate channels.

The panel features moderator Rosalia Sciortino, IPSR, Mahidol University & SEA Junction and four speakers.

Ada Chirapaisarnkul founded the Thai Young Philanthropist Network (TYPN) in 2008, mobilising local and foreign students and institutions for a social investment and skillbased volunteering movement across Thailand and Southeast Asia. In 2017, she founded taejai.com, the first and largest fundraising website for social-impact projects. She has also taken on government projects, such as the first National Master plan for Social Enterprise Development with the Prime Minister’s office, and academic roles, such as lecturing and founding G-Lab at Thammasat University. On top of her various ongoing projects, some of her recent roles include Head of Social Impact Advisory for ChangeVentures, and Board Member of NEEDeed.

Cavelle Dove is the Team Lead of Women’s Economic Empowerment and Financial Inclusion at United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), Myanmar. She has lived and worked in Southeast Asia since 2002, and has managed economic development and aid programs in Thailand, Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia. She is the co-founder of a social business in Myanmar (YangonBakehouse); the founder of a NGO in Thailand (ImagineThailand); and has developed shared value partnerships across government, private sector, and civil society.

Ismid Hadad was the chairman of Perhimpunan Filantropi Indonesia, or the Association of Indonesian Philanthropy (PFI), an independent non-profit institution committed to facilitating the interests of the Indonesian philanthropic community. Prior to joining PFI, he was the executive director of Kehati, the Indonesian Biodiversity Foundation, a grant-making institution he helped found in 1994. Ismid is an economist and institutional development expert with more than 30 years of professional experience in the areas of governance, social communication, capacity building and environmental management. Before working with environmental NGOs, he spent several years in the private sector.

Mdm Ton Nu Thi Ninh is the president of the Ho Chi Minh City Peace and Development Foundation (HPDF). Prior to holding her current position, she served as deputy chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Assembly of Vietnam and was for more than decades a diplomat in Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, specialising in multilateral institutions and global issues. From 2000 to 2003, she was Vietnam’s Ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg and Head of the Mission to the European Union in Brussels. She also served a term on the Central Executive of the Vietnam Women’s Union.

The event is free, but donations are most welcome to enable SEA Junction to continue its activities and keep events accessible to the public.

For more information and reservations, email southeastasiajunction@gmail.com or call (097) 002 4140.

Making your own MV

Published June 14, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30371016

Making your own MV

lifestyle June 13, 2019 01:00

By THE NATION

TikTok, the world’s leading short video platform, has launched a new Photo Templates (MV) feature that allows users to select photos on their camera roll and upload them into a premade video template with background music, making content creation even easier on the app.

To introduce the new feature, TikTok is encouraging users in Thailand to participate in the #Memory Trip challenge by selecting their travel photos and uploading them into one of the unique templates, such as, Beat Switch and Countdown template.

Showing how it is done for the first time, local pop icons, influencers and creators have joined the #Memory Trip challenge to create their own videos using the new Photo Templates (MV)  feature.

In order to create a MV with Photo Template, simply follow the instruction by recording a video and then choosing the “Photo Templates (MV)” option. Choose a template. Some templates are good for multiple photos. Each of them comes with the default background music. Then select photos from your memorable trip on your phone’s camera roll and enjoy the magic!

TikTok is now available in over 150 markets, and in 75 languages. Find out more at http://www.TikTok.com/en/.

Goodwill in question

Published June 14, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30370975

Goodwill in question

lifestyle June 13, 2019 01:00

By PAWIT MAHASARINAND
SPECIAL TO THE NATION
Singapore

A new play tells stories less often told in other media

Apart from groundbreaking and genre-defying performing arts works from many countries, the recently ended Singapore International Festival of Arts (SIFA) also took on the task of commissioning a new work by local artists, giving them a opportunity to create a work that they wouldn’t do in a normal season. Checkpoint Theatre’s “Displaced Persons’ Welcome Dinner”, written and directed by their co-founders and co-artistic directors, Huzir Sulaiman and Claire Wong, both Malaysia-born and Singapore-based, was one prime example, and proved such a hit that another show was added to the originally scheduled three at the Victoria Theatre.

Glancing at the title and the play’s brief info, I initially thought this, being a local work from the company whose slogan is “original Singapore stories with honesty and humour, head and heart”, would be about Thai construction workers enjoying papaya salad at Golden Mile. As always, I was completely wrong. The play took place in a fictitious Organisation for Emergency Assistance’s (OEA) refugee camp and focused on the life and troubles of a group of international aid workers there rather than those of the refugees with which other media have already acquainted us.

Based on indepth research and interviews, the play provided a good amount of intriguing, if not startling, information, yet never sounded too educational. For instance, onethird of such a humanitarian organisation’s budget is being spent on fundraising, explaining why they came up with an idea, which was never realised, of inviting Gwyneth Paltrow to a dinner prepared by the refugees – hence the title – for a PR stint. Also, because of this, the headquarters in Geneva has to always make sure that the organisation keeps a clean image, no matter what actually happens in any of their operations around the world.

The drama that unfolded in the 140-minute play also reminded me of the talk accompanying a photo exhibition on refugees I attended a few days earlier. A representative of an actual organisation informed the public that the best way for us to support their operation is to donate; to work in camps means one has to always be ready to move from one to another. In the end, these aid workers, whose life and work rely on many factors including politics, might actually end up feeling like displaced persons themselves.

 

A sign of a long and efficient period of rehearsals, the cast members lived the lives of multinational characters and formed a united ensemble, most evident in intermittent surrealistic moments with physical movements accompanied by the sound and music created live by composer-musician duo “.gif”. Standing out was stage and screen actress Jo Tan, as Angela Ling, who, amidst all troubles, attempted to keep control of the situation.

After the Saturday evening performance, I joined three other critic colleagues, from Indonesia, Japan and Singapore, on a panel where we shared our thoughts on the play with the theatregoing public. Among the topics on which we agreed to disagree was whether or not the play would have better conveyed its messages had it been less experimental in style and trusted more on Sulaiman’s dialogues which otherwise flew naturally. The fact that many of us have smartphones doesn’t mean we’re always connected to the internet, making all calls on messaging apps and using all downloaded apps; sometimes a simple voice call sounds the best.

It’s noteworthy also that the panel wrapped the twoday inaugural Asian Arts Media Roundtable (AAMR), organised by Arts Equator, to not only network performing arts critics from eight Asean countries – including four from Thailand – plus India and Japan but also shared information, identify issues and find possible ways to work together in the future.

The writer’s trip was supported by ArtsEquator. Special thanks to Kathy Rowland and Denise Dolendo, and Huntington Communications’ Charmaine Lau for all kind assistance.

Mark your calendar

– “SIFA 2020”will run from May 15 to 31. Keep your eyes on http://www.sifa.sg.

– Checkpoint’s next work is “Eat Duck”, a family drama written by young playwright Zenda Tan and directed by Wong. It runs from August 29 to September 8. For more, http://www.CheckpointTheatre.org.

– To read what critics discussed at AAMR, check out http://www.ArtsEquator.com/AAMR

Letting your fingers do the running

Published June 11, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30370883

Letting your fingers do the running

lifestyle June 11, 2019 11:10

By The Nation

Asics has officially launched Asics.com in Thailand as a one-stop destination offering online exclusive products and seamless checkout for fuss-free shopping.

To cater to the demands of a fast consumption generation in Thailand, the e-commerce site will further strengthen Asics’ retail channel strategy in Thailand and provide avid runners easy access to acquire the latest shoes and a platform to browse for new purchases on the go.

To better enhance the customer’s shopping experience, Asics is offering the convenient platform delivered straight to the home.

“Shopping habits are constantly evolving and it is no longer sufficient to have just a brick and mortar store. Asics hopes to enhance the shopping experience with the addition of an e-commerce site,” says Yogesh Gandhi, managing director of Asics Asia.

The site will also offer shoppers the opportunity to get their hands on exclusive shoe drops and shop for a wider range of products from various sports categories including tennis, track and field and basketball.

New signups will get 10-per-cent site-wide discount and the website also offers free shipping with minimum spend of Bt2,000 and free returns.

From ‘Rocketman’ to ‘Crystalman’

Published June 11, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30370812

From ‘Rocketman’ to ‘Crystalman’

lifestyle June 10, 2019 13:30

By The Nation

Swarovski collaborated with BAFTA-nominated costume designer Julian Day to bring a shine to “Rocketman”, the new musical fantasy film from Paramount Pictures based on the life of Sir Elton John.

Day designed the costumes, including 64 different looks for the character of Elton and one million crystals embellish the costumes and accessories, bringing to life the extraordinary showmanship of the legendary singer.

Directed by Dexter Fletcher, “Rocketman” traces Elton John’s extraordinary breakthrough years, from student prodigy to pop-rock sensation. Taron Egerton as Elton performs his greatest hits and wears ever-more fabulous costumes in this fantastical retelling of the true highs and lows of stardom. The film also stars Bryce Dallas Howard, Jamie Bell and Richard Madden.

Among the elaborate costumes that form part of Elton’s flamboyant wardrobe is the Dodgers costume – a fully-crystallised baseball kit that is a stunning reimagining of the iconic costume worn by Elton to perform at his legendary Dodger Stadium concerts in Los Angeles in 1975. The shimmering design worn in the film by Egerton was created using 140,000 Swarovski crystals to be even more dazzling than the original.

The dramatic Devil costume was also designed for a moment when Elton feels unloved, so Day surrounds him with love in the form of a fiery-red jumpsuit with heart-shaped wings. The costume blazes with bespoke crystal flames, a headdress and sunglasses all glowing with over 60,000 hand-embellished crystals.

The Yellow Brick Road costume brings to life Elton’s much-loved album, with design details to represent characters from “The Wizard of Oz”. The blue suit with crystal red lapels and the iconic ruby crystal slippers symbolise Dorothy, and the fur coat, silver shirt and straw hat characterise each of her companions: the Lion, the Tin Man and the Scarecrow.

The extravagant Elizabeth costume is worn during a wild stage performance. Bursting with crystal and Swarovski Crystal Pearl embellishment it plays on Elton’s penchant for theatrics as well as his reputation as rock royalty. The show-stopping star headdress was inspired by Hedy Lamarr’s Swarovski original in the 1941 film Zeigfeld Girls.

Day also worked closely with Swarovski’s design team to create more than 750 bespoke crystal transfers to accent his outfits, including 91 personalised Elton John patches. Day designed a red jumpsuit with an Elton John patch emblazoned across the back for Elton’s 1970 performance at the Troubadour in Los Angeles – a pivotal moment when he transforms into the Elton John we know and love.

For the final flourish, Day adorned numerous glasses – a signature Elton John accessory – with crystals; as well as shoes, accessories and jewellery for added rock-star glam. Swarovski has previously partnered with Day on costumes for Oscar-nominated “Bohemian Rhapsody” (2018).

“I’ve used Swarovski crystals on numerous films and they are very much part of the idea of showmanship. What they do is elevate and exaggerate an outfit. Wherever we could find a place for a crystal in this film, we put it there. Swarovski and Rocketman is a perfect partnership,” said Day.

Swarovski’s history on the silver screen goes back to the early days of Hollywood over 85 years ago, when its crystals made their Hollywood debut in the Marlene Dietrich film Blonde Venus.

It is a history sparkling with iconic moments, from Marilyn Monroe singing “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend” wearing dazzling Swarovski jewels in “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” to Audrey Hepburn accessorising her Little Black Dress with a chic Swarovski tiara in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”.

Go ‘mini’ for top films in Tokyo

Published June 8, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30370731

Film buffs crowd the lobby of the Kino Cinema Yokohama Minatomirai cinema complex. /Japan NewsYomiuri
Film buffs crowd the lobby of the Kino Cinema Yokohama Minatomirai cinema complex. /Japan NewsYomiuri

Go ‘mini’ for top films in Tokyo

lifestyle June 08, 2019 01:00

By Makoto Tanaka
Japan News Yomiuri

Cineplexes around Japan win big by thinking small

A NEW type of “mini-cinema” with multiple screens is popping up in and around Tokyo, apparently driven by the convergence of strategies to fill seats, diversifying tastes and an ageing audience.

Taking the concept of “mini theatre complex”, Uplink Kichijoji opened in December in a shopping complex in the Kichijoji district of Tokyo.

All five cinemas in the complex are mid-sized or small, with a capacity of between 29 and 98 people.

With an emphasis on films that attract the biggest fans of movies, the selection being screened ranges across diverse genres.

The most unusual aspect of the cinema’s appeal is flexible scheduling enabled by utilising all five screens. The operator changes the schedule every week to try to avoid leaving seats empty.

Film buffs crowd the lobby of the Kino Cinema Yokohama Minatomirai cinema complex. /Japan NewsYomiuri

 

Although popular titles are screened four or five times a day, the operator sometimes screens 25 different movies a day – five films on each of the five screens.

Digitisation means it’s not necessary to change reels, which enables more flexible scheduling.

Since the cinema’s opening, the documentary “Bill Evans: Time Remembered”, about the revered jazz pianist, has attracted the largest audience.

Likewise, screenings of the Netflix movie “Roma” attracted lots of people.

“Customers’ tastes are diversifying. When mini-theatres were in their heyday in the 1980s and 1990s, cinema operators used to just present their own selections. However, now that customers get more information through the internet, we’ve changed the way we present films,” says Uplink president Takashi Asai.

“We present our line-ups and let customers choose what to watch.”

Another cinema complex, Kino Cinema Yokohama Minatomirai, opened in a multipurpose building in the Minatomirai district of Yokohama on April 12. The first theatre launched by Kino Cinema Co, it has three screens with a capacity of 55 to 111 each.

“We initially thought about having two screens with a capacity of about 150 each, but that limits the number of titles and the variety we can screen,” says president Yuichiro Nishijima.

“To secure steady box-office sales, we wanted to increase the number of screens as much as possible.”

Adhering to the initial concept of “making a place where quality films from around the world are constantly screened”, the majority of titles seen are art-house movies from overseas, including last year’s Cannes screenplay winner “Happy as Lazzaro”.

But popular titles from Japan and abroad, such as “Bohemian Rhapsody”, are also screened. The operator is considering making schedules that would meet the respective needs of seniors, families and company employees, varying depending on the day of the week or the time.

Kino Cinema will this month open a second cinema complex at the Tachikawa Takashimaya Shopping Centre in Tokyo.

“Movie enthusiasts are getting older. Some such customers say they want to watch reputable art-house movies, but such films are only screened in Tokyo’s 23 wards. They say they want to watch such films at cinemas close to their homes,” says Nishijima.

Food with a trending factor

Published June 8, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30370738

An increasing number of restaurants in Thailand are pursuing the trend of procuring ingredients from sustainable local sources.
An increasing number of restaurants in Thailand are pursuing the trend of procuring ingredients from sustainable local sources.

Food with a trending factor

lifestyle June 08, 2019 01:00

By Khetsirin Pholdhampalit
The Nation Weekend

A recent seminar addresses the move towards vegan and other healthy dishes made with locally sourced organic ingredients

SET BACK from the chaos of downtown Bangkok, the restaurant Haoma sits on a serene patch of Sukhumvit Soi 31 and boasts a lush backyard garden and an aquaponics system that allows pla nil (tilapia) fish and edible plants to grow together.

This is a green destination where the zero-waste principle is pursued and all the ingredients have been raised free of pesticides and antibiotics. Its own produce ends up on diners’ plates and the dish called Cured Wheel, which offers 15 different herbs grown in the backyard and the fish, is a particular favourite.

 

Misshapen fruits and vegetables regarded by supermarkets and other retailers are given a new lease of life in special menus called Perfectly Imperfect at Greyhound Cafe until August 31.

Instead of ending up as fertiliser or worse still, simply thrown in the garbage, the restaurant has joined with the Royal Project to bring overlooked produce such as portobello mushrooms, sweet potatoes, passion fruit and baby carrots to such beautiful dishes as salads with imperfectly shaped greens, and stir-fried spicy ugly portobello mushroom with minced pork and herbs.

Before entering the dining area of Taan restaurant at Siam@Siam Design Hotel Bangkok, diners can study the wall bearing the portraits of all the local food suppliers who help stock the kitchen. On the menu, too, the ingredients of each dish are accredited to their origins, complete with the distance from Bangkok in kilometres.

Charna restaurant offers ingredients from a network of local producers.

The idea behind Charna at Siam Center is also based on a happy supply chain – all the ingredients come from a network of local producers certified as environmentally and ethically responsible. The menu even has QR codes for the main producers that, when scanned, reveal more information about them.

These are among the increasing number of restaurants in Thailand pursuing the admirable trend of procuring ingredients from sustainable local sources rather than importing what they need.

“Locally grown produce that includes storytelling, concerns over food waste, artisanal and hand-crafted food and home-made desserts are among this year’s food trends. Diners today are increasingly interested where the food comes from, how it’s grown or produced and what ingredients are used. They want to learn more about the produce and the producers and are willing to pay for its real value,” said Phanumas Zaw-raksa, executive chef of Unilever Food Solutions during the seminar Trend Watch for food entrepreneurs on Wednesday.

An increasing number of restaurants in Thailand are pursuing the trend of procuring ingredients from sustainable local sources. 

Over the past year, Unilever Food Solutions has been conducting global research on changes in the lifestyle of consumers by looking at the popular keywords people use to search online as well as online conversations.

“In Thailand, in addition to the interest in the local table, we have spotted four key trends. Plant-based protein menus with vegetables are the stars and along with smaller portions of meat, continue to be on the rise. Beyond pleasing the palate, a multi-sensory experience can make dining out special.

The rise in the popularity of the vegan diet plays a significant role in the demand for plant-based protein.

“Serving food in a bowl rather than on a plate can create a homey atmosphere. The afternoon tea set is still popular in Thailand thanks to its healthy benefits and the variety of choices available and is crafted with creative twists,” Phanumas added.

Underlining the trend for hyper-local food production –meaning food grown, processed and consumed at the community or neighbourhood level, is new bakery Baan Baan by Baker Gonna Bake in Nakhon Ratchasima’s Pak Chong district. Like Haoma restaurant in Bangkok, this small cafe occupies a 15-rai plot and grows a variety of plants and vegetables. Its philosophy is based on zero waste.

Craft Bread in Bangkok sells artisan breads crafted from whole-wheat and 100-per-cent organic flour, natural honey and olive oil and guarantees that no milk, butter, eggs, additives and preservatives are used. It’s made fresh loaf by loaf to order.

“I’m a sort of carnivore, so I give credit to the 101 Mahaseth restaurant in Bangkok whose Isaan-style dishes highlight local beef. The taste of locally grown coffee beans is second to none and the Root Cafe is one of the places offering a cup brewed from premium Thai beans. People today don’t look just for tasty coffee. They also want to learn about the unique characteristics of the beans. It is about the experience and high-quality coffee is considered an artisanal beverage produced by artisanal means,” says Yod Chinsupakul, chief executive and co-founder of the popular food website Wongnai.com.

Vegan diets or simply reducing the consumption of animal products is on the rise and menus based on plant-based protein are gaining in popularity.

A packet of Beyond Meat burger patties are displayed on a store shelf in New York./EPA-EFE

Take the California-based vegan burger start-up Beyond Meat, which made a sizzling Wall Street debut in early May, more than doubling its share price. Backed by Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio and Microsoft founder Bill Gates, the California-based firm had valued itself at about $1.5 billion (Bt47.7 billion) at opening on the Nasdaq exchange, according to Agence France-Presse. It uses peas, fava beans and soy to make steak, sausage and minced meat alternatives and uses beets to make its burgers bleed.

Fast food giant Burger King recently launched a plant-based version of its signature Whopper in US stores in a nod to vegans. It’s made up of mostly soy and potato protein, and features coconut oil, sunflower oil and heme – an iron-rich protein that simulates the texture, colour and taste of actual meat.

A plant-based ‘Impossible Whopper’ sits on a table at a Burger King restaurant in Richmond Heights, Missouri./AFP

According to Agence France-Presse, Nestle has also announced plans to introduce plant-based burgers in Europe – under the Garden Gourmet brand – and in the United States under the Sweet Earth label. Its competitor Unilever in December bought Dutch brand De Vegetarische Slager (the Vegetarian Butcher) to cement its presence in the expanding sector.

During the seminar in Bangkok, Chaowalit Yimprasert, executive sous chef with Unilever Food Solutions, presented several dishes that satisfy this growing trend. Among them were cauliflower chia crust pizza with a dough made of cauliflower, chia seeds, black pepper and a batter mix, as well as benedict with tofu and beetroot sauce, and cream of tomato soup with walnut pesto.

“I’m actually a non-meat eater and chickpeas are among my favourite foods. Trends let us know how the world is moving but more important is what you personally can do. Take the trends just an accessory that may integrate with your creation,” actor-turned-chef Phol Tantasathien told the seminar.

Serving food in a bowl rather than a plate gives off a homey feel.

Saying goodbye to plates and serving food in bowls takes account of those trends.

“The food bowl has been trending on social media since 2016. If you search Instagram with the hashtag #bowl, you will find over two million pictures along with 2.2 million pictures with the #acaibowl tag featuring fruit smoothie bowls topped with a variety of grains, fruits and superfoods.

“This trend soared after the wedding reception of Prince Harry and Megan Markel last year when guests enjoyed various options of canapes served in hand-sized bowls, allowing guests to stay standing and mingle while they ate,” Phanumas noted.

For those who want to join the bowl game, he suggested starting with preparing an American breakfast served in an attractive bowl.

“It gives a homey feeling and allows diners to customise their meals. Another benefit is the reduction in the quantity of tableware,” Phanumas added.

 Set in an enchanted forest ambience, the dimly lit, temporary Wang Hinghoi restaurant in Bangkok offers a multisensory experience by allowing diners to see the natural lights of hundreds of fireflies.

The multi-sensory experience is one of the key trends in drawing in customers. In Bangkok, Wang Hinghoi is an enchanted-forest restaurant featuring semi-enclosed rooms with ecosystems that allow hundreds of real fireflies to thrive. The restaurant will dim its lights at around 8 or 9pm, allowing guests to see them. Like the 18-month lifespan of the firefly, the temporary restaurant is designed to run for the same period and will close in September.

“The most avant-garde, multi-sensory restaurant is Ultraviolet by Paul Pairet in Shanghai that serves only 10 diners a night over a 20-course menu. The dining room which has a single table and bare white walls is transformed throughout the meal by lighting, projections, sounds, and scents and temperatures to create a unique culinary journey linked to the food at the table,” Chaowalit explained.

“Look no further than the comeback of the bubble tea craze in Thailand. A glass of brown sugar bubble tea topped with brown sugar sauce, bubble jelly and caramelised creme brulee can create a multi-sensory feeling too through different layers of textures and aromatic flavours. It is also pleasing to the eye and begs to be photographed though at about Bt150 a glass, it isn’t cheap,” Yod added.

 An afternoon tea set with flavoured or infused tea crafted with new textures and sensory experiences is also gaining in popularity. 

Tea is still trending and chef Chaowalit says that afternoon tea served with flavoured or infused leaves crafted with new texture and sensory experiences is increasing in popularity.

“Trends may call attention, but the most important factors are ‘tasty and value for money’. Achieve these and customers will keep on coming back,” Yod advised.

Your heart on your wrist

Published June 8, 2019 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/lifestyle/30370734

Your heart on your wrist

lifestyle June 08, 2019 01:00

By Paisal Chuenprasaeng
The Nation Weekend

Slightly more expensive than its more basic siblings, the Fitbit Inspire HR keeps you constantly informed about your health

WITH THE numbers of individuals determined to take care of their health by working out and wanting to know just how well – or otherwise – they are doing in the fitness stakes, leading makers of wearables are constantly launching new devices to satisfy their demands.

One of the latest to hit the market is the Fitbit Inspire HR, a |fashionable fitness tracker with a heart rate-monitoring function that comes at an affordable price.

The Inspire HR is light, made from silicone and stylishly sleek. It is available in three colours – black, white and lilac – and comes with a back light for its Greyscale OLED touch display that matches the colour of the wristband.

You can further enhance its look with optional wristbands made of sophisticated metal mesh or premium Horween leather.

Inspire HR’s price is a little bit higher than the entry level Inspire but it has several more features including an embedded heart rate sensor.

It uses that sensor to provide guided breathing sessions to calm you down or reduce your tension. Data from the heart-rate sensor is also used by the Fitbit app to give you cardio fitness data aimed at improving your exercises.

To start using Inspire HR, you will need an account with Fitbit to store your lifetime fitness data on the cloud. The data is also compiled as weekly stats to encourage you to try to improve your fitness status.

Once you’ve set up your account, you download and install the Fitbit app and log on and use it to connect your smartphone to Inspire HR.

Once connected, the Inspire HR will let you stay connected on the go with updates from smartphone apps and calls, calendar, and text alerts when the phone is in within Bluetooth communication. You can also use the Fitbit app to customise which apps send alerts to the fitness tracker.

The Inspire HR is a very light and its ability to monitor heart rate around the clock basis is useful to maximise your exercise regime, see sleep states and better track calories burned.

The sensor will track your resting heart rate and inform you while app recognises your Fat Burn, Cardio and Peak heart rate zones and helps you optimise your workouts.

You can also use the Inspire HR and the Fitbit app to get your Cardio Fitness Score, which is a snapshot of how fit you are.

Navigating the tracker is intuitive and involves just the touchscreen and a sole button. You navigate by tapping the screen, swiping up and down or pressing the button.

Swipe down to scroll through the apps installed then open the app you want by tapping it.

Swipe up to see your daily stats, which include the number of steps you have taken, your current heart rate, the calories burned, the length of time you have been active, the distance you have walked and the number of paces you have managed of your 250-step hourly requirement.

To keep you active throughout the day, the Fitbit HR will remind you to move every hour from 9am to 5pm.

The tracker has more than 15 goal-based exercise modes, among them swimming, weights, workouts, elliptical, hiking, golf, climbing stairs, tennis, walking, yoga, circuit training, and kick boxing. Six modes are available on the fitness tracker and you use the app to customise which ones you want.

Some of the exercises can use the GPS of your smartphone to provide you real-time pace and distance.

The Fitbit HR also comes with SmartTrack function that automatically recognises workouts like walks, runs, swims, bike rides and more, then records them for you in the Fitbit app. You need to do each of these exercises for at least 15 minutes for SmartTrack to detect and record it.

The Inspire HR is also waterproof and you can use the Swim mode in the Exercise app to count the number of laps covered. Do remember to customise the length of the swimming pool so the Inspire HR can accurately record your swim.

The Inspire HR also has timers and a stopwatch and, for women, the HR can work with the Fitbit app to track cycle, record symptoms and more.

The Inspire HR has up to five days of battery. It takes about two hours to fully recharge it from zero per cent.

The tracker’s internal memory can store up to seven days of detailed motion data – minute by minute and heart rate data at 1-second intervals.

During the test, I found the Inspire HR very comfortable to wear because of its slim size and light weight. I didn’t feel uncomfortable where I wore it to bed either.

I tried using it to do a 10-kilometre walk in my neighbourhood and found that the accuracy of the map depends on the GPS of the connected smartphone. During the walk, Inspire HR tracked the elapsed time, the distance and the current pace. It alerted me every hour of my walk.

Fitbit Inspire HR retails for just Bt3,790 and it is available from Fitbit official store on Lazada.co.th.

Key specs:

Sensors: A MEMS 3axis accelerometer, which tracks motion patterns. Optical heartrate tracker

Wireless technology: Inspire HR contains a Bluetooth 4.0 radio transceiver.

Haptic feedback: Inspire HR contains a vibration motor for alarms, goals, notifications, and reminders.

Battery: Inspire HR contains a rechargeable lithiumpolymer battery.

Memory: Inspire HR stores your data, including daily stats, sleep information, and exercise history, for 7 days.

Display: Inspire HR has an OLED display.

Wristband size: Small: 140 mm  180 mm in circumference; Large: 180 mm  220 mm in circumference

Water resistance: Up to 50 metres

Maximum operating altitude: 8,534 metres

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