Sheraton Pattaya Resort
Michael Delargy, an Ireland national, leads and motivates a team of 200 associates to ensure that Sheraton Pattaya Resort remains the leading luxury world class resort in Pattaya where he is general manager (GM). As well as the normal business focus, he said, their role is to make sure that every guest feels special and has a great experience at the resort. “I’m generally optimistic and relaxed, and I try to enjoy everything that life has to offer,” the GM tells Lookeast. “Probably one big trait I have is curiosity. It’s great to find out about things, learn about stuff and explore! This has probably led to my love of travel, working in many different countries and my love of exploring new places.”
Delargy said his ideal holiday destination is somewhere he hasn’t been before, “a destination that really gives you the feeling that you are exploring somewhere new. I love a mix of things to do, a great culture to immerse yourself in and also an ability to totally unwind at the end of the day. Maybe biking, trekking or diving in the morning so you don’t feel guilty about eating that huge breakfast, wandering through local villages or temples in the afternoon and then chilled out in the evening with a glass of something cold. This is probably why Thailand is such a fantastic destination for me.”
His favorite place in Thailand at the moment is Bang Saray, located down the coast from Pattaya. “It is only 20 minutes from the hustle bustle of Pattaya, but seems like a thousand miles away,” he said. “It has a lovely beach, fishermen going about their everyday business, fascinating local stalls selling everything, wonderful seafood restaurants, an inspiring temple and a lovely relaxed friendly atmosphere that makes everyone welcome.”
Delargy learned about it from some of the team at Sheraton Pattaya when he was asking about where he can go on his days off. “There are great places in the area such as Silverlake, but as soon as I got to Bang Saray, I knew I had arrived somewhere special,” he said. Since there, he’s been to Bang Saray many times, primarily because “it is so close to Pattaya,” and he added, “If the weather is nice, it is easy to make a last minute decision to drive down for the afternoon. In fact I was just there a few days ago!
“For a quick getaway from Pattaya, and even from Bangkok, it is almost perfect. Like any pleasant area on the weekend, you may have to park a few minutes away and walk, but this is really no problem, as it is so pleasant to walk around. There is some residential development continuing in the area, and so I can see prices increasing over the next few years. The people are super friendly and welcoming, and even the dogs seem chilled out!,’ he said. “It is a perfect little getaway to enjoy either with my wife or with friends. If you know someone who would enjoy a stroll along the beach, a wander through the Temple markets and some wonderful seafood, then they sound like the perfect person to accompany you.”
The only potential downsides, he said, “are that the more people learn about Bang Saray, there is a possibility that it will lose its charm from over-crowding or over-development. Thankfully this certainly hasn’t happened as yet.”
He would certainly go again, he said, “maybe even this weekend to sit over the water, feel the breeze and enjoy some delicious locally caught seafood washed down with a cold beer!”
Must-Do: Take a deep breath, slow down your pace and leave the city behind
Don’t-Do: Expect to have a Big Mac or a Starbucks Latte!
Must-See: The Temple at Bang Saray
Sleep at: 20 minutes away at Sheraton Pattaya!
Eat at: Bang Saray Club — a completely charming restaurant with English and Thai menus. It’s been in Bang Saray for decades, and is really an icon there with a chilled out atmosphere and wonderful views.
Drink at: Any of the seafood restaurants or relaxed local bars
Bring: A camera to take photos of the spectacular sunsets
Don’t forget: Turn off the iPhone and the Blackberry and enjoy a chat with friends.