Boat racers at their competitive best in artistic elephant-themed sculptures soaring from the bow of the vessel, paddle slicing through the water in perfect rhythm, guided by a mesmerising drumbeat. There was sheer revelry in the air, as they were cheering each other with gusto to triumph over the other one. Festival goers caught all the enthusiasm from their champagne tents, while sipping on their bubbly. With beer, wine and champagne pouring around and Thailand’s top restaurants and Bangkok’s favourite chefs, dishing out diverse culinary offerings, at pop-up stalls and mini food trucks, the second annual Elephant Boat Race and River Festival to celebrate Thailand’s majestic national animal - the elephant, on the banks of the mighty Chao Phraya River, next to Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort was clearly buzzing and how.
The inaugural day kickstarted with an adrenaline-packed frenzy as various boat racers jostled at the races for the winning spot. On the river, the final four teams – Raja Navy (Royal Thai Navy) – Citi, Thailand National Sports University Lampang Campus – Casillero Del Diablo; Samut Prakarn – PWC Thailand; Pradu Thong Goddess – Keith&Kym; went head to head in the thrilling finale, but it was last year’s winners, the Raja Navy that blitzed the race and claimed the final glory for the second year running. The Royal Thai Navy won the royal trophy graciously granted by His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn Phra Vajiraklaochaoyuhua.
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WOMAN OF METTLE
Full-time actress and a full-time mother, one wonders how she does it all and with so much passion; yet, one conversation with Uma Riyaz Khan is all it takes to know one can have it all! She is one of the few actors who love acting and takes cinema passionately and has shared screen space with some of the leading stars of Kollywood. For her acting is a craft and she proves her mettle every single time she’s on-screen and has been constantly juggling between many mediums of entertainment. The versatile actor speaks to RITZ about her career choices, her family life, and her experiences on and off-screen as a mother and much more.
THE POWER OF GRIT
Jewellery designer, socialite, philanthropist and now the President of Terroir - The Madras Wine Club, Minnie Menon has added one more feather to her colourful hat. Minnie, who is now on mission Terroir, speaks to RITZ about her passion, love for jewellery, her recent responsibility and what it took to get in there.
THE ART OF MAKING TEA
Kausshal Dugarr - Founder and CEO of Teabox shares how he took his Indian tea brand to 117 countries.
SPREADING MASSIVE WINGS
Zorawar Kalra, founder of Massive Restaurants speaks on how he likes to innovate and stay ahead of the game.
READY TO FACE THE ARC LIGHTS!
As a child, she was always under the limelight for her amazing performances at the Kerala Youth Festival. It came as no surprise that her very first film offer came from Sibi Malayil for Ishtam opposite Dileep. Though her parents were reluctant initially, with a little coaxing from her uncle, Director K Madhu, they agreed to let her chase her dreams and ever since, there has been no looking back for this beautiful actress. Her memorable performances during the early stages of her career in films like Nandanam, Kalyanaraman and Kunjikoonan made her one of the most sought after actresses in Mollywood. With close to 50 films to her credit in Malayalam, Tamil and Kannada, she is the recipient of two Kerala state film awards. Ritz is in conversation with the South Indian Star, Navya Nair, who after a hiatus of eight years, is making a comeback to Mollywood with her much awaited film, Oruthee!
‘Raftaara’ the song from the blockbuster Mollywood film, Lucifer went viral the minute it was released online. It came as a surprise to many that it was Malayalam Cinema’s very own Jyotsna, who had sung this fast Hindi number! The gorgeous playback singer herself didn’t expect to receive such an overwhelming response and she is thrilled that the song has topped the charts. Of late, Jyotsna has been busy with her independent projects such as ‘Krishna the eternal’ - which is an offbeat meditation album, her single ‘Enni Varumo’ which won the Mazhavil manorana music award for best independent song of the year and of course ‘Paranne’, an original, written, composed and sung by the melody queen herself! Ritz catches up with the brilliant musician, Jyotsna Radhakrishnan, who recently won the ‘Kochi Marriott Presents Ritz Super 8’ felicitation for her exceptional and inspirational work in Music.
FUN, FOOD, FRENZY, FESTIVITIES, FIREWORKS & FINESSE
Thailand’s Elephant Boat Race and River Festival saw a spectacular adrenalinefilled weekend of paddlers, singers, music, food and tipple lovers, and some celeb spotting too.
FROM RAGS TO SHAYYA!
Pure Living is back with yet another incredible initiative. On women’s day this year, the firm that focusses on eco-friendly products and eco awareness, launched a special product titled ‘Shayya’, a handcrafted mattress that is being distributed free of cost to the poor and homeless. What makes it special is the fact that it is upcycled from cloth waste. Yes, the cloth scrap generated at fashion design or tailoring units that is usually burnt every single day is what is being used to make the Shayya. The result? Less pollution and a warm coz y surface for the poor and homeless! Read on to know more about this wonderful initiative by Lakshmi Menon.
DREAMS MAKETH A WOMAN
She’s a sensation in the wrestling ring. Sakshi Malik made India proud by bagging a bronze medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics. She was the first woman wrestler from the country to secure a podium finish. No highs or lows, or ups and downs stopped her from reaching her goals. Just one step short of the Summer Olympics 2020 in Tokyo, Sakshi seems to be fitter and stronger than ever before, thanks to the confidence, she’s gained from her last victory. Endorsing the partnership of Herbalife Nutrition with the Inspire Institute of Sport (IIS) as it’s sports nutrition partner, the young IIS wrestler spoke to us about her journey after Rio Olympics and her dreams for Tokyo Olympics.
Creating ENTERTAINING SOCIAL SPACES
Riyaaz Amlani, CEO & MD, Impresario Handmade Restaurants shares his journey on providing unlimited entertainment options.
Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad — For Most People. For STAMP FAIRTEX, However, It’s Not Enough!
A Taste of Asia
Carole Mac takes you on an exotic gastronomic tour featuring Wine4Food’s top bites and sips across Asia. From lavish beach-side seafood in Bali, decadent wines in Myanmar, traditional noodle curry in Thailand, to the finest sake and Yamaga cuisine in Japan, this trip must not be missed.
HOW TO CROSS THE INDIAN OCEAN, BY JANNEKE KUYSTERS
Bangkok – Go with the Flow
Wellness options blend work and play in Bangkok.
Living With Korats Is Kaotic!
“Move over, rabbit’s foot.
How Two Seasteaders Wound Up Marked For Death
If a tiny floating cottage brought down the wrath of the thai navy, is there any hope for stateless life at sea?
Travel - Far, Fast, And Light
Travel gear brand Tropicfeel wants to lighten your load on your next trip.
Bangkok bustles with options for wining and dining clients.
Koh Kood: Beyond Buddhas In Thailand
This distant island resort delivers Robinson Crusoe seclusion, service by Fridays and tea in the trees
Find Out New Travel Points Of View
Hotels are enhancing their guests’ stays with unique experiences and privileged access to create new travel points of viewTom Otley takes an art tour in Thailand, while Laura Miserez provides snapshots of the myriad options available around the world.