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LATest e-bulletin April '24

In this issue: ① Quote of the month ② Roots of Malaysia ③ LAT New Centralized Customer Service ④ Tulips of Cameron Highlands ⑤ So Many Good Reasons to Work with LAT ⑥ Myanmar, The Lady’s House Auction ⑦ Malaysia, MH370 ⑧ Indonesia, Avoid Kopi Luwak ⑨ Malaysia Airport Transfer Fees


"He who rejects change is the architect of decay"

Harold Wilson.


Roots of Malaysia


It was only after a team of 11 researchers cleared the thick bushes and secondary jungle from the top of the hill, and gently scraped away at the soil that a missing piece of Southeast Asian history was revealed. The 1,200-year-old Buddhist stupa of Bukit Choras was discovered last August in Malaysia’s Bujang Valley – a river basin scattered with several clusters of protohistoric sites in the country’s northwestern Kedah state. Until six months ago, none of the inhabitants of the village of Bukit Choras, set amid rice fields near the steep and lush hill of the same name in northwestern Malaysia, had any idea they had been living next to an archaeological wonder all their lives. The stupa is the best preserved in the country and experts say it could hold the key to Malaysia’s long history of multiculturalism.

"This site is an anomaly because it stands all by itself" says the team from the University of Science Malaysia’s Global Archaeology Research Centre (CGAR) in the northwestern island of Penang, who supervised the excavation between August 28 and September 12 last year.

Bukit Choras is situated near the small town of Yan on Kedah’s southern coast about 370km north of the capital, Kuala Lumpur.



LAT New Centralized Customer Service

We would like to remind of our new Customer Assistance Service which revolves around a single, easily accessible number for all our destinations introducing a Multilingual IVR Telephone System, a cutting-edge Interactive Voice Response (IVR) telephone system, now available in four languages to guide passengers through inquiries, ensuring language is never a barrier.

The new number for IVR Service, effective April 1, 2024, is: +62 21 508 896 86.

The new number for Text-Based IVR Service, which will be effective April 1, 2024, is: +62 811 390 390 88.

Be reminded that all other existing numbers will be disabled by April 30, 2024.

Should you have any questions or require further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are dedicated to continuing our partnership and serving you with excellence.

Cordially,

The LAT Team



Tulips of Cameron Highlands


In the picturesque landscapes of Cameron Highlands in Pahang, the national flowers of Turkey and the Netherlands, tulips, have burst into a riot of colours, captivating the hearts of beholders.

With over 2,500 tulips thriving in Malaysian soil, their full bloom is not just a spectacle but a vibrant display attributed to the country's prevailing higher temperatures. The tulips have found an unexpected home in the tropical Malaysian climate and have become an annual attraction, drawing unexpected visitors who flock to witness the blooming beauties.

Originating from Iran and Turkey, these tulips undergo seed-breeding technology led by the Netherlands (Holland), and the bulbs are imported from there. Tulip flowers bloom gradually, displaying colours within five to 10 days after being transplanted into warm soil. However, they continue to bloom for two to three weeks, depending on the weather conditions.

The ideal temperature for growing tulips is below 12°C, with a tolerance limit of up to 29°C. They require direct sunlight, preferably in the morning or evening, and do not thrive in high heat. The soil must have good drainage, a neutral to slightly acidic pH between 6 and 7, and be fertile, dry, or sandy. Mulch, such as sphagnum moss, is used to control soil temperature and retain moisture.

After the flowering period ends, the stems and leaves must naturally wilt and turn yellow or brown before being removed from the soil. Cleaned tulip bulbs are stored in mesh bags at below 5°C in a cold room for 12 weeks to six months during their dormancy phase.

Subsequently, the bulbs are placed in a planting medium like peat grow for three to four weeks to stimulate growth before being transferred to the display site.

This year's tulip varieties include Rood (red), Yellow Baby (yellow), Flair (orange mix), Roze (light purple), Paars (dark purple), and Flaming Baby.

In addition to the tulip festival, the park offers a variety of Mediterranean fruits such as apples, pears, grapes, and strawberries, as well as popular flowers like impatiens, camellias, dahlias, petunias, lilies, and roses.

Situated at an elevation of 1,400 meters above sea level, the park serves as a key destination for highland tourism in Cameron Highlands. Its strategic location near the town of Tanah Rata ensures a comfortable temperature throughout the year.



So Many Good Reasons to Work with LAT

Established in 1991

 

Independently owned and operated

 

Purely B2B with travel industry partners

 

Online booking engine with immediate

confirmation of hotels, tours and transfers

 

Skilful Contents Provider and Technology user

 

Knowledgeable and efficient reservations personnel

 

Long and proud association with the MICE industry in all Lotus destinations

 

Fully committed to Sustainability and CSR

 

Climate Contribution for all packages and services on offer

Extensive selection of scheduled group departures and innovative product lines

 

Direct access to a vast pool of local professional contributors

 

Owns small boutique island hotels strategically located

 

LAT Indochina subsidiary operating in Thailand and Vietnam

 

Multilingual guides in all destinations

 

Operations offices throughout its destinations

 

Centralised bookings and payments for multi destination tours

 

Assistance in language


TATTLER

Myanmar, The Lady’s House Auction

The strained relationship between Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar's imprisoned elected leader, and her estranged older brother, Aung San Oo, hit a new obstacle on Wednesday as no bidders appeared for the court-ordered auction of their renowned family home in Yangon.

At 10 a.m., officials emerged from the steel-spiked gates, famous worldwide for the stirring speeches Suu Kyi delivered from them following her release from three rounds of house arrest totalling 15 years between 1989 and 2010.

Despite ringing bells to signal the auction's commencement, officials found no bidders, only journalists who were photographed by the secret police as part of standard procedure. The military's expected crony buyers, anticipated by one of Suu Kyi's friends from her teenage years at the Methodist English High School, failed to materialize.

It's a beautiful building. The woodwork is very good, solid teak. But the land is the most important thing. They would most probably want to build a hotel or whatever there.

Kim Aris, Suu Kyi's second son, has spent over a year in the house and cherishes memories of the rare time he had there with his mother. He welcomed the failed sale, expressing hope that it would continue to attract no bidders. He expressed his desire for the house to be used as his mother intended, as a centre for the charitable foundation she established in her mother's name, the Daw Khin Kyi Foundation.


HIGHLIGHTS

Malaysia, MH 370

A decade ago, Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 vanished with 239 souls on board. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the aviation industry's biggest unsolved mystery. Despite extensive searches that lasted for three years, concluding in 2017, the plane and the cause of its disappearance remain unknown.


Indonesia, Avoid Kopi Luwak

Tourists planning visits to Bali are being urged to reconsider tours to civet cat coffee plantations and purchasing 'kopi luwak' to take home with them. This call comes from animal rights organization PETA, along with other leading animal welfare organizations like World Animal Protection and Four Paws Australia, who have also launched campaigns to raise awareness of the cruelty involved in producing kopi luwak. Kopi luwak, also known as civet cat poo coffee, is a local delicacy. However, there is a misconception that it has a distinct and highly sought-after flavor. Coffee experts have confirmed that this is simply not the case.


Malaysia, Airport Transfer Fees

From June 1, 2024 Malaysia introduces fee for passengers transferring through airports, USD 1.5 for domestic, up to USD 9.5 for international.

Our whole product for free and independent travellers, groups and MICE are based on a Climate Contribution programme. This means that part of the greenhouse gas emissions that will be generated are offset by projects in collaboration with Climate Partner, one of the leading climate protection solution providers for companies. 

 

The arising emissions are being compensated by supporting a third-party certified geothermal energy project in Darajat, Java (Indonesia). ​The project helps to meet the growing demand for electricity in Indonesia. By increasing the share of renewable energy, the dependence on fossil fuel-based electricity decreases, and about 705,390 tonnes of CO2 emissions are saved per year.



For over thirty years, Lotus Asia Tours Group has provided services and assistance to travellers the world over, specialising in the design and implementation of corporate events, activities, incentive tours and motivational travel, targeted at FIT, GIT and MICE markets, in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Indochina. The group also operates four boutique island hotels in Indonesia, in Lombok, Bali, Sulawesi and Papua.


To learn more about our brand please head to our website, or contact us directly; we look forward to hearing how we could help make your next trip, tour or event memorable and successful.

Corporate Office D-5-4 Megan Avenue 1, 189 Jalan Tun Razak, 50400 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia T: +60 (0)3 21617075 · F: +60 (0)3 21617084 · E: latgroup@lotusasiatours.com


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