Laguna Phuket Celebrates Past and Future Success
Laguna Phuket celebrated its 20th Anniversary this past weekend with much fanfare. Twenty years ago, what was to become Asia’s finest destination resort began with the opening of the Dusit Laguna Resort. Now, the resort complex has grown to comprise six deluxe hotels, spas, a golf course, a shopping village, a wedding chapel, an outdoor recreation facility, private residences and villas.
In keeping with its commitment to contribute to the Phuket community and to commemorate this milestone, Laguna and its business partners donated THB 1,500,000 to the Phuket Special School to support the construction of a skill development playground specifically for autistic children at the school.
Laguna’s donation was presented to the Director of the Phuket Special School, Mr. Virach Klaharn, during an invitation-only gala dinner on Saturday 29 September. “Tonight we are gathered together to share in Laguna Phuket’s 20th Anniversary celebrations,” said Claire Chiang, Chairperson of Banyan Tree/Laguna Groups Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Committee. “But, as we enjoy ourselves at this fine event, let’s not forget those less fortunate than ourselves, especially children in need and at risk, a target group that our company has identified to direct our CSR efforts at.”
The Phuket Special School provides educational opportunities to mentally and physically handicapped children, providing learning and teaching in an effort to make them as selfdependent as possible. It currently provides lessons for 290 children with disabilities, autism, and retardation syndromes. A certified boarding school operated by the Thai government, it is located in Paklock, on the east coast of the island, approximately 15 kilometres from Laguna Phuket.
In his keynote speech, Ho Kwon Ping, Chairman of Laguna Resorts & Hotels Plc., emphasized Laguna’s social commitment, “Laguna Phuket has flourished because it exists not just for its shareholders, nor its employees, but for a larger community of stakeholders whose common interests will always prevail.”
The event was not only to celebrate Laguna’s past, but also its future, as Mr. Ho demonstrated by announcing new developments such as Laguna Phuket’s next hotel, the Angsana Phuket, which, with its sky pool villas, will debut in 2009, as well as other large projects.
“Laguna Phuket has become so successful that we will be replicating the same model in Laguna Vietnam, our next integrated destination resort near Hue,” he said. “With seven hotels, golf course, holiday homes and apartments in a private, three kilometre long bay, this will be the single largest resort project in Vietnam.”
He also announced a new joint venture with Mr. Kanit Yongsakul, a prominent Phuket businessman, to develop 400 rai (160 acres) of prime land adjacent to Laguna Phuket for residential, commercial, retail and entertainment purposes.
Celebrations for Laguna Phuket’s 20th Anniversary on Saturday night concluded with a spectacular fireworks show and guests releasing Chiangmai lanterns, which, in Thai culture, is believed to bring good luck and make wishes come true.
Laguna Phuket also organized a concert on Sunday to thank its 3500 staff for their contribution to Laguna’s success. Staff who have been with Laguna since the beginning were honored and presented with commemorative plaques. Leading Thai pop stars Christina Aguilar and Academy Fantasia singers were flown in specially for the occasion and kept the thousands of staff dancing and singing well into the night.
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