CityBuzz This Month
Fabulous arty maps, a mae baan to join your family, or a night in a five star hotel in Chiang Rai. Here are three interesting places, people and things we have discovered this month.
Nancy Chandler’s Map of Chiang Mai
When searching for the best route to a destination in Chiang Mai, most people immediately reach for their phones and type the name of the location into an app like Google Maps. But travellers looking to truly explore the city should pick up a copy of Nancy Chandler’s beautiful and meticulously drawn printed map. The tangibility of unfolding this detailed work of art is a treat in and of itself, as it gives the opportunity to have in hand a sprawling record of all of the city’s most worthwhile stops. Instead of staying limited to a pre-determined target when setting out for the day, open this map to look over all the hidden gems in an area that would have otherwise been overlooked. The map includes comprehensive plots of the Night Bazaar area, Old Town and Kad Luang, as well as a foldout with routes to all the best out of town trips for weekend excursions. This isn’t just a map, it’s a work of art crammed with pithy and truly in-the-know details. Now in its 21st edition, Nancy Chandler’s maps are a treasure to be cherished. It is also a great gift and introduction to Chiang Mai for any visitor. Available in bookshops around Chiang Mai for 320 baht, or online on Amazon and Asiabooks.com.
Bliss Mae Baan Network
The Bliss Mae Baan Network and their new partner, Bliss Clean + Care Company, finds housekeepers (mae baan), trains them and matches them with families. They also ensure that the housekeepers receive at least minimum wage, proper holidays and work hours as well as comply with labour laws. Bliss believes in empowering the women in their programme to feel dignified and fulfilled in their work through specific job training and ensuring compatibility between the mae baans and their employers, which they reinforce through their interview and application process, a 30-day trial period and translation services. Bliss’s five-day training course teaches thorough cleaning and sanitation skills and gives lessons in the cultural values of foreign families. If you are looking for a good mae baan, whether to live in or come in by day, Bliss works to find you a perfect match while continuing to look out for both employer and employee interests.
Le Méridien Chiang Rai Resort
Le Méridien Chiang Rai Resort is an exquisite property with vast gardens alongside the quiet banks of the Kok River in Chiang Rai. A perfect getaway for honeymooners or romancing couples, each of the 159 rooms are spacious, modern, and come with generous balconies with daybeds to laze away the afternoons. A massive river-front swimming pool and deck chairs is a roll away from the Parvati Spa where pampering hands will melt you body and mind. Enjoy a cocktail at river-facing Chill Bar as the sun goes down before heading to the fabulous Italian restaurant, Favola, for a hearty and tasty meal and a cheeky nightcap at Latitude 19, where drinks are going for 100 baht each through April! Wake up in the morning and stop by the gym to get rid of the excess pasta before digging into a huge breakfast at Latest Recipe. April promotions also include dinner at Latest Recipe on Friday Thai Dining Nights and Tuesday Asian Theme Nights at 650 baht per person (or pay for three with four people!) Sparkling Saturday nights at Favola is offering a special of 150 baht per glass and 800 baht per bottle of wine and you can stay on to enjoy the Chef Knows Best three course Italian dinner for only 999 baht each! Still hungry? Stop by Chill Bar for a 300 baht settrio of burgers.