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Dazzling outlook from Phuket's Mangosteen Resort, soon a Golden Tulip

Tulip Time as Phuket Resort Gains Golden Glow

Monday, December 7, 2009
Mangosteen Photo Album Above

THE SOUTH of Phuket had good news yesterday. The Netherlands-based hospitality group, Golden Tulip, is to manage the Mangosteen Resort and Spa from February 1.

This is the top-10 global management brand's first Thai venture, and Rawai is a good place to begin. The GT Mangosteen will be offering a healthy dose of Ayurveeda, the holostic Indian diagnosis-massage treatment.

Resort owner and popular managing director, Hajo von Keller, has spent the low season pondering the best option for the hilltop Mangosteen, which has a reputation for great views and excellent Sunday brunches.

Opened in 2003, the 41-villa Mangosteen has shared all of Phuket's bumps and grinds. Mr von Keller's ponderings have included what to do with the resort and whether any arrangement should also take into account the 20 rai of the property that has yet to be developed.

''The only option that doesn't work is to keep everything and do nothing with it,'' he told Phuketwan.

The villas are scattered around a central swimming pool and restaurant. Ayurveeda sounds an ideal option, with no disadvantage in being on a hilltop and beyond walking distance from the sea.

''If you have to drive to the beach anyway, you might as well find a good resort location,'' he said.

Another resort manager told Phuketwan recently that a large percentage of people who holiday on Phuket never go to the beaches anyway.

Mr von Keller also believes those who do enjoy beaches will not be disappointed by the GT Mangosteen.

''One of the nicest beaches is close,'' he said. ''Not walking distance, but that doesn't matter.''

From now on, though, the medium is the massage. Mark van Ogtrop, Managing Director of Golden Tulip South East Asia, said: ''We hope to re-position The Mangosteen as a unique Ayurveeda destination, offering very special Ayurveeda treatments to our guests for ultimate relaxation.''

Mr von Keller added: ''In selecting Golden Tulip, we are confident that the resort will be taken to the next level of being internationally recognised and promoted.''

GT has two more Thailand openings scheduled and may join several other newly-arrived brands in aligning with a second resort on the island before long.
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