Anantara keeps elephant charity alive

BANGKOK, 21 December 2018: Anantara Hotels and Resorts will launch a new event, a weeklong festival to raise money for Thai National Elephant Day, to replace its elephant polo charity event that has been discontinued.

Last month, the Thailand Elephant Polo Association confirmed it would not seek permission for a 2019 King’s Cup Elephant Polo Tournament in 2019.

The final  elephant polo event was hosted by the Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort, earlier this year, an annual event that over the years has raised more than USD1.5 million to improve the welfare of Thailand’s domesticated elephants.

Replacing the debunked elephant polo event, the new charity project promotes a pre-event stay at Anantara Golden Triangle that overlooks the Mekong River in Chiang Rai province, 13 March 2019.

Guests can interact with domestic elephants in a natural habitat created in the resort’s parkland before moving to Bangkok for the signature event to raise cash for the care of Thai elephants. Staged at Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River, spectators will be able to watch the first ever  “elephant boat races” 15 to 17 March.

International teams that usually participate in the age-old cultural tradition of dragon boat racing will paddle what the organisers call “unique elephant themed and designed boats”, creating a colourful sporting event for spectators, while driving fundraising for elephants.

It promises to be an action packed weekend filled out with concerts, food, educational elephant expos, family fun and parties and fireworks all with the goal of fundraising for elephant conservation and welfare.

TTR Weekly comment

Kudos to Anantara for creating an alternative to elephant polo. Recognising urgent change was needed the hotel group has responded with an event that hopefully will win the support of company sponsors and organisations dedicated to improving elephant welfare.

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