There are many memorable places in this world you think you will only see once in your life, but then life gives you back some loving and takes you back to a little piece of heaven like Thailand to savour the smells, tastes and lush nature, just because you woke up one day and decided to take a long weekend. Tsunami warning did you say? At this point of the lovely dusty Dubai spring, you’d shrug your shoulders and secretly dream of a small wave rather than eating and breathing sand.
I had a brief stop in crazy Bangkok, where one night is really all you need: some sightseeing and walks in lush manicured gardens and a stroll along trendy Sukhumvit road, exploring funky side streets, quircky cafes, local art galleries and eating street Thai Noodle Soup for less than 2 dollars. The smells and colours are always intense: from deliciously ripe mangoes to fragrant curries to thirst quenching coconuts full of natural electrolytes, everything awakens your senses, including the solitary pink painted sidewalk café, the Pink Taxi Meter cabs and even the Pink public buses.
A lonely neon pink stool on a Bangkok pavement
Pedro’s on Sukhumvit road, Bangkok: cafe or powder room?
Bangkok public bus
Pink is the new Yellow cab
Moving on to Phuket island, pink also seemed to be the natural choice; aside from Pink looking ridiculously great against vibrant backgrounds of lush green Bamboo forests, coconut groves and turquoise blue lagoons, Pink carries great significance in Thai culture. Every day of the week carries a different colour in Thailand; Tuesday is pink for the Mars god and is associated with Thai King Chulalongkorn. Wearing pink brings good fortune and good health, a sentiment that is even echoed with Muay Thai boxers, who wear pink shorts, representing strength and endurance as opposed to the negative and girly connotations evoked by men in other parts of the world.
Neon Zip bag from Stravidarius
Flowers and ribbons for buddhist shrines
Pink tropical-print slim Havaianas
To make packing easy and survive the melting temperature, I opted for a base palette of pink and built around it complementary colours that could go well with the same pink Havaianas , pareo (or sarong) lipstick and giant zip-up bag from Stravidarius, big enough to carry my sunscreens, phones and ipad, I may not be able to surf the waves even to save my own life but I am certainly a sport at surfing the net.
Coral print bikini by Pistol Panties, vintage cotton voile pareo, white denim shorts from Topshop, Neon Zip bag from Stravidarius
Bamboo tree forest in Phuket Thailand
Pareo worn in a halterneck knot
The essential piece on holiday is a really good sarong that you can use as a beach cover up, a wrap-around dress to go to the spa or top-knotted at the front or around the neck. The one I chose was an old favourite bought ten years ago at a small boutique in a lost corner of Beirut.
Aqua green bikini by Milly
, Cotton jersey kaftan by Reiss, Pink tropical print slim Havaianas, Lipstick by Color Riche from L’Oreal Paris, floppy straw hat from Accessorize.
For a bit more of a serious cover-up outside the resort, I opted for a simple cotton jersey kaftan from Reiss in a taupe colour , easy enough to wear with any bikini colour and a strapless romper in a tribal print . My bikinis came in vibrant shades of coral and cream from Pistol Panties, deep aqua green with coconut shell detailing from Milly and a strapless floral number from Seventh wonderland.
Romper tribal print suit from A Boutique Society
Wearing starpless Seventh Wonderland bikini at Maya Bay Phuket where Leo Decaprio’s The Beach was filmed
No tropical holiday is complete without a visit to the Spa, after some serious floral charcoal scrubbing, I came out as buffed and smooth as a peeled mango. An hour and a Thai massage session later, I felt worthy of a contortionist and I do swear that my masseuse was walking on top of me, untangling every knot in my body and tapping away furiously at my thighs, trying to chase away the evil that is cellulite. I packed one dress for the evenings, an asymmetric maxi by Riller & Fount that was the perfect show-off for my newly buffed shoulders and back , plus the essential spritz of mosquito repellent. Forget about high heels and opt for metallic gladiator-style sandals , anything over 1cm will just look misplaced and make you look like a giant next to the petite frames of Thai women.
Sunset over Pond in Anantara resort Phuket
All photos by Style Under Fire