Exclusive Interview with Mr Nicolas Reschke and Mr Jon Ashenden of SALA Phuket Resort & Spa ahead of the 2016 ASR
Less than ten days left until the opening day of the 2016 Asia Superyacht Rendezvous in Phuket, Thailand, organised in collaboration between Asia Pacific Superyachts’ General Manager, Gordon Fernandes and Charles Dwyer, former captain of the striking sailing yacht Yanneke Too. The prestigious, invitation-only sailing yacht regatta accompanied by an entourage of beautiful motor yachts will be hosted by the SALA Phuket Resort and Spa for the first time this year, offering participating guests unprecedented luxury and deluxe services during their entire stay at the resort. We have spoken to SALA’s Group Director of Business Development, Mr Nicolas Reschke and the Regional General Manager, Mr Jon Ashenden about their new and exciting collaboration with the most distinguished racing event of its kind in the South Pacific.
SALA Resort and Spa has been announced as the new home for the upcoming 2016 Asia Superyacht Rendezvous. This must be very exciting for you and the entire resort. How did the collaboration with Asia Superyacht Rendezvous initiate and what made Sala resort to decide to host ASR guests and the event?
We have been approached by ASR on a possible collaboration and soon saw the potential this Event can have for the SALA Phuket Resort and Spa. Both ASR and SALA Phuket cater to the same lifestyle, combining a relaxed but sophisticated approach on daily life with love towards the Sea and Beach. Elements like Design, exclusivity, privacy and exquisite hospitality are common terms for both ASR and SALA Phuket Resort.
What are your expectations from the event?
We aim to expand our reputation as a leading Hotel on beautiful Mai Khao Beach with an emphasize on privacy, great food, design and true Thai Hospitality.
Are there any special events that will take place during the three days of the rendezvous?
There will be the ‘Opening night cocktail party’ on the Dunia Baru superyacht on Friday evening of the 16th Dec followed by the ‘Benetti Challenge’ cocktail party & model boat-building races held on the Hotel premises on Saturday 17th Dec. Final closing will be the ‘VIP Gala Dinner’ on Sunday 18th Dec for owners & captains at the SALA Phuket Resort.
When it comes to the high-end, luxury tourism on the island of Phuket and in Thailand in general, how do you see the situation now, as opposed to the past 5-1O years? Has there been an increase in demand for luxury services and quality accommodation?
We think there will be always a demand for high-end tourism. However, everything became more volatile compared to 5 or even 10 years ago. Traditional strong markets have disappeared or shifted to other areas within Thailand. We experience a complex mix of external factors including financial, political or ecological aspects. For Mai Khao the area has seen multiple changes over the past years but we are confident that due to an appropriate infrastructure the area will further increase over the next years.
Are there many guests arriving aboard superyachts coming to your resort in general and how do you see the future when it comes to this type of clientele?
This is a relatively new and exciting opportunity for us. We already have experiences in this area, but feel that there is a perfect match in the making, hence our engagement in the ASR.
What special services could guests visiting Phuket aboard luxury superyachts enjoy at your resort, given that they are most likely to spend the night aboard their motor yacht or sailing yacht?
We are proud to offer facilities boasting a very high standard. For example our award winning Spa featuring Clarins trained staff and products. Or our SALA Restaurant which with our Executive Chef Davide Pritoni, hailing from Italy, has received countless accolades over the past years. In general we feel that to be on a boat is one of the most beautiful places to be, but there is always time to experience something new and SALA Phuket offers just that in Mai Khao.
What are the busiest time of the year and the best time of the year to visit Phuket and the surrounding areas?
We consider the period from November to May the best season considering the weather. As such, this is also the busiest time of the year. However, we also see a growing trend in visiting Phuket during the so called green season. Which comes with the occasional rains, but less crowded areas across the island.
Why is SALA resort special and what makes her stand out amongst other luxury resorts on the island?
This luxury resort in Phuket provides the best accommodation, which combines rare historical Sino – Portuguese architecture with luxury hotel facilities, in one of the most dramatic settings in Phuket. Located on pristine Mai Khao beach in Phuket’s northwest shoreline, our luxury Spa Hotel is only 20 minutes from Phuket International Airport along with nearby Blue Canyon Country Club and famed Phang Nga Bay. 63 out of 79 rooms are villas featuring private pools and privacy in a marvelous setting.
About Asia Superyacht Rendezvous
The upcoming ASR will take place from 16th until 18th December 2016 in the enchanting destination Thailand, on the island of Phuket. Main sponsors of this event are Benetti and AsiaPacific Superyachts.