Naphalai's Diary: January 7-20
I've been desk-bound for most of the last two weeks.
There weren't that many events to attend, but even more than that, I have been tied to the computer trying to finish two special publications, Society and Expat Society. That's the reason two weeks have been combined in this edition as there wouldn't have been enough for two separate ones.
I have decided that not being able to get out and about is bad for me. Other than the eye, wrist, shoulder and back aches one gets from being fixed in front of the computer, some days until 8pm, I find that being stuck at the desk saps my energy. Sure, I complain if I have too many events to go to and have to run up and down the skytrain, walk the streets and brave the traffic, but I realise that all that action keeps my energy levels from falling. I feel invigorated with all the exercise, as long as I don't overdo it. My problem is sometimes I don't know when to stop so this year, the goal is to find the right balance.
During the week of January 7 to 13, I only made it to two events: the launch of Thanachart Bank's new staff uniforms and Asava's thank-you lunch. Thanachart's new uniforms have been designed by Phisit Jongnarangsin of Tube Gallery, who came up with a versatile collection sporting the bank's signature orange and brown colours of pants, skirts, jackets and polo shirts to be mixed and matched as appropriate. The collection was launched at the Glass House of Nai Lert Park with staff members modeling them.
It is always nice to see Polpat Asavaprapha of his eponymous fashion brand. This is one guy who never stays still and with all that he does one wonders how he is able to find time for everything. The thank-you lunch was at his Sava Dining at The EmQuartier. The restaurant is collaborating with Doi Tung and featuring fresh produce from this social enterprise, prepared with Sava's unique twists and turns.
Last week I had the chance to rub shoulders with Miss World 2018 Vanessa Ponce De Leon from Mexico. She was in Bangkok with Julia Morley and the Miss World team to discuss hosting the next Miss World pageant in Thailand. I joined a dinner hosted by Tanawat Wansom of TW Investment Group at Bussaracum, and learned that the Miss World effort is more than just the beauty pageant as the charity projects that follow is also part of its work. Tanawat was supposed to have been the organiser of Miss Universe held in Thailand in December last year but had to pull out at the last minute. He is determined to make sure Miss World goes ahead as planned.
There was also a lunch hosted by Sub-Zero and Wolf, American refrigeration and kitchen appliance company at its house showroom. In order to show off its products, distributor Yam Churn Meng and Karen Gonzago host regular events featuring well-known chefs. This time it was Peranakan cuisine by Singapore MasterChef finalist Sharon Gonzago, also Karen's sister. Since this is not a cuisine that is easily available here, I finished everything that was placed in front of me!
I stopped by as well at the Soaring Skies exhibition of Matthew Campbell Laurenza at Wolf Pack. I have always known this American guy as a jeweller who produces creative designs manufactured in Thailand and sold in international markets. Well, he is also a talented artist and the exhibition showcased his abstract paintings and sculptures, which will move to New York after Bangkok. Woof Pack owner Jay Spencer was also there and took me on a tour of the building now almost completed and featuring a nice rooftop bar.
Talking about rooftop bars, Octave at Bangkok Marriott Sukhumvit was the venue of a party hosted The Ritz-Carlton Samui to thank its supporters. Opened in the middle of last year, the hotel is looking located on a 58-acre site that stretches from hilltop to beach. General manager Mahmoud Skaf and communications director Tracy Khee welcomed guests to find out more about this stunning new property.
Finally, I showed up at the birthday party of Supaluck Umpujh at EmQuartier's also rooftop venue, Escape. The Iron Lady of Thai retail assured me it would be a small party, but then small is relative as the adjective has a different connotation for her. With her staff members and all the guests who turned up to wish her well, the Glass space of Escape was nearly overflowing. As with most of Supaluck's parties, it didn't end until very late.
(Previously: Naphalai's Diary: December 31-January 6)