KHAO YAI, THAILAND A Unesco World Heritage rainforest and a majestic mountain rain provide the backdrop of an early morning hot air balloon flight from the Kirimaya Resort in Khao Yai, Thailand. Kirimaya means "illusion of a mountain" in Thai.
Two hours by car from Bangkok, the rare experience is offered between January to February with a package now running from January 15 to February 28, 2013.
Perfect as part of a conference or incentive programme, three hot air balloons are supplied by the Flying Media Company and manned by pilots certified by the Thailand’s Department of Civil Aviation. These can accommodate three passengers and one pilot at one time and so long as they do not exceed 200 kg.
The journey lasts about 45 minutes and is packaged with pre-flight drinks of tea, coffee and juices, while on landing, guests will enjoy the sounds of a jazz band and a champagne breakfast with either Western items or Thai style, including the highlight of seafood boiled rice, priced at US$517 per person. The pilot will also recount the colourful origins of hot air ballooning, and then present a certificate souvenir to each participant.
A more comprehensive bundle including deluxe accommodation in a Plantation View room, breakfast, free wifi and the balloon ride is available at US$833 a night.
For more serious work, there are 600 sqm of function space at Kirimaya Resort, consisting of a grand ballroom, two breakout venues, an executive boardroom and one more in the club house. The resort counts 42 guestrooms, categorised as Plantation or Horizon, four Terrace Suites and four tented villas with their own indoor spa pool and deck. The nearby 18-hole golf course, designed by Jack Nicklaus, and the Maya Spa round up the onsite leisure offerings.
For more details, visit www.kirimaya.com
Margie T Logarta