Well, I guess the secret is out now. Phuket has some great places to eat! Michelin, the influential dining guide, is now set to cover the Phuket scene. It will release a new guide for the island and neighbouring Phang Nga province in late 2018.
It will be interesting to see how this plays out, especially in the local media, where currently most dining reviews follow this formula:
Restaurant X books an advert in Publication Y.
Publication Y writers are invited to enjoy a lavish and free spread of food at Restaurant X.
Glowing, gushing review of Restaurant X appears in Publication Y, usually without any prices or useful info like opening hours included. (it was free for the writers, so who cares about price!)
Publication Y gets paid.
Hopefully having an internationally-known review process will help Phuket restaurants — and the publications that write about them — raise their game, and hungry diners will benefit as a result. Let’s see!
Here’s a press release by Michelin Guide about the planned launch in Phuket:
Phuket and Phang Nga added to the 2019 edition of The Michelin Guide Thailand
Following the very first 2018 edition of The MICHELIN Guide dedicated to Bangkok, Michelin today announces the extension of The MICHELIN Guide’s reach to Phuket and Phang-nga, with a new 2019 edition: The MICHELIN Guide Bangkok, Phuket, and Phang-nga 2019, to be released at the end of 2018 – featuring Thailand’s vibrant food cities with a wealth of accommodation options in one single guidebook. Bangkok’s inner zone and its vicinity provinces – i.e. Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Nakhon Pathom, Samut Sakhon, and Samut Prakan – will also be substantially covered in this new edition.
According to Michael Ellis, International Director in charge of the MICHELIN Guides, this year, apart from Bangkok, The MICHELIN Guide has explored new territories in the South of Thailand, in search of the finest restaurants and hotels. Thrilled by the culinary and hospitality scene of Phuket, which offers unique and fascinating characteristics as it consists of a blend of various different cultural influences; MICHELIN inspectors are excited to discover and reveal the best dining and lodging experiences.
Segsarn Trai-Ukos, Country Director of Michelin Siam Co., Ltd. and Secretary General of Michelin East Asia and Australia, revealed that the extension of The MICHELIN Guide’s reach to Phuket and Phang-nga is part of Michelin Group’s commitment to contribute to the prestige of local Thai gastronomy and hospitality scenes on a worldwide scale, and make travel more enjoyable for everyone – in line with Michelin’s corporate slogan: “A Better Way Forward”.
“While placing more focus on the inner zone of Bangkok and its surrounding provinces, the 2019 edition of MICHELIN Guide will draw more international attention to the restaurant and hospitality industry in Phuket and Phang-nga. In addition to world-famous beaches, the variety of cuisine, dining experiences and exceptional hospitality services are the major attractions of both Andaman cities. The local cuisine in Phuket is distinctive and flavorful with a wonderful blend of influences from India, Malaysia, China, and the Peranakan ethnic group. Basically, it truly offers an infinite variety of flavors worth discovering.” said Mr. Trai-Ukos.
In addition to being the melting pot of cultural cuisine, Phuket is also well-known for excellent super-fresh seafood. Similar to the food scene in Bangkok, the Pearl of Andaman offers ultimate culinary experience of both traditional and inventive creations, across all levels of price range from sophisticated restaurants to street vendors. As popular tourist destinations, both cities have a range of accommodation options on offer to visitors to suit all budgets and preferences, from international-standard hotels to simple guesthouses.
Yuthasak Supasorn, Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), said: “In line with TAT’s policy, The MICHELIN Guide Bangkok, Phuket, and Phang-nga will help in sustaining the momentum of the debut edition of The MICHELIN Guide Bangkok in promoting Thailand as an international gastronomic destination. With this latest guidebook, we hope tourists and travelers – both local and international – enjoy discovering the fascinating history and rich culture of these three featured cities through their dining and lodging experience.”
The MICHELIN Guide Bangkok, Phuket, and Phang-nga 2019 will be available in a bilingual edition (Thai and English), in both print and digital versions.
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