New airport plan passes hearing

Nakhon Pathom's airport has recently passed a second public hearing.

The project was initiated last year by the Airports Department, whose aim is to ease congestion at Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang airports.

The investment is expected to be 20 billion baht. The tentative location is a 3,500 rai plot of land in Bang Len and Nakhon Chaisi districts, west of Bangkok. The site is about 5km away from access to the Bang Yai-Kanchanaburi motorway. It will take about an hour to drive from the capital.

The new airport is expected to handle 5,100 passengers per hour with a maximum capacity of 25 million passengers a year.

The Airports Department will submit the project proposal to the transport minister, who will further pass the project to the cabinet for approval. If it receives a green light, the construction will take about four years.

Booking.com launches travel app

Booking.com has launched its CityBook app.

The digital guide leverages machine learning to make instant recommendations for travellers to explore a city destination in terms of things to do, local offers and discounts, or content to help users get a general feel for the city to help them make decisions.

During the pilot period, the cities available are Paris, London and Amsterdam. The next cities to be added over the coming months will be Tokyo, New York City, Berlin, Barcelona and Rome.

The CityBook app is available for Android and iOS phones and the web (citybook.booking.com).


AIRLINES UPDATE

A new low-cost carrier, Thai Eastar Jet, has postponed its schedule to launch direct flights between Bangkok and Kaohsiung in Taiwan, from January until April.

The airline is a sister company of Eastar Jet, the Korean LCC. The service will be available from Suvarnabhumi airport and will be a daily flight. The first flight will be launched on April 1. Meanwhile, Thai Summer Airways has announced a plan to launch its service from Utapao Rayong-Pattaya International Airport in Rayong. It aims to fly to Macau, Taiwan, China and India in the near future.

AirAsia has begun operating two new Airbus A321neo aircraft.

The plane is known as an energy-efficient aircraft. It can reduce energy consumption at a rate of 23% per seat compared to the existing Airbus A320, and it also generates less noise-pollution.

The body is also 6.9m longer than the A320, so it can accommodate up to 236 passengers when compared to a 180-seat A320 aircraft. Each seat in the new model is equipped with USB charging ports and a tray table that can be adjusted for the placement of a smartphone.

The new aircraft are initially available for routes from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Hat Yai, Surat Thani, Phuket and Khon Kaen.

Visit airasia.com.


HOTEL DEALS & UPDATE

Three resorts in Thailand have been listed among the 2019 Destination Deluxe Awards.

The Destination Deluxe is one of the leading wellness and travel online publications. It announces the awards yearly to honour the leaders and pioneers in wellness and travel. The awards consist of 28 categories, including top awards for hotels, spas, treatments, skincare and wellness brands.

The Kamalaya Wellness Sanctuary & Holistic Spa at Kamalaya Koh Samui Resort was awarded Wellness Retreat of the Year.

The Barai Spa at the Hyatt Regency Hua Hin was named Spa of the Year.

Himalayan Thermal Therapy of Anantara Spa at Anantara Mai Khao Phuket Villas won the Holistic Treatment of the Year award.

Visit destinationdeluxe.com/award/destination-deluxe-awards-2019-winners.

The Sala Hospitality Group is launching a "Weekday Specials" promotion offering up to a 35% discount for Thai nationals and expats.

The discount is available for rooms and suites for staying from Sundays until Thursdays until the end of March. The package also includes a complimentary drink at a bar or lounge.

The promotion is available at Sala Boutique Hotels in Bangkok, Ayutthaya, Khao Yai and Chiang Mai.

Prices for a night's stay start at 1,872++ baht.

Visit salahospitality.com.

Star Convention Hotel in the city of Rayong will be rebranded the Novotel Rayong Star Convention Centre.

The 571-room property will undergo a major renovation. During the first phase, 253 rooms, public areas and dining outlets will be refurbished and will be followed by another 336 rooms in the second phase over the next two years.

The hotel is about a 2.5-hour drive from Suvarnabhumi International Airport and 1-hour drive from U-Tapao International Airport.


Email karnjanak@bangkokpost.co.th if you have any comments to share.