All the reasons why this traditional beach town is chef Kent Arnon Masanglong’s favorite place.
Born and raised in Bangkok, chef Kent Arnon Masanglong is better known as the winner of Thailand’s 2012 “Iron Chef” competition. He is the chef in charge of the official receptions of the Royal Family of Thailand, and he has worked for more than 30 years in upscale hotels and restaurants around the world, including in Canada, New Zealand, Shanghai, Dubai, Switzerland, Cape Town, and Thailand. He has cooked for the team of Miss Thailand Universe 2011, and has given Thai cooking classes for personalities such as tennis players Caroline Wozniacki, Victoria Azarenka, Kim Clijsters, and Rafael Nadal, and renowned singers like Paul Anka and Francis Yip. But it was one experience in particular which gave Hua Hin a special place in his heart: working at the InterContinental Hua Hin.
“As Chef de Cuisine, I was responsible for each restaurant and every catering reception in the hotel. The InterContinental Hua Hin has regularly been chosen as the accommodation for royal guests, dignitaries, Hollywood stars, and celebrities; it has set up major international venues such as Hua Hin Film Festival—the red carpet parade of stars on the beach—where Michelle Yeoh, Jacky Cheung, Luc Besson, Alex Meraz, Johnny Nguyen, Ryan Gosling, and many others famous film directors and superstars from Hollywood, Asia, and Thailand have passed by,” he explains.
Chef Kent received an honorary Bachelor of Arts in Hotel and Tourism Industry Management from Rajamangala University of Technology Rattanakosin Wang Klai Kangwon Campus, Hua Hin, in 2012. He then decided to make a contribution back to Thai society, and today he collaborates with the Thai Chef Association and with the university’s Faculty of Hospitality and Tourism Industry. Even as he helps governmental bodies to promote authentic Thai cuisine and Thai export food products, he also gave us recommendations for Lookeast’s readers to keep in mind when visiting Hua Hin.
Must-do: Have an elephant ride at the Siam Winery Hua Hin vineyard. And give merit to the Big Buddha (Luang Phor Tuad Statue) at Wat Huay Mongkol Buddhist Temple.
Don’t do: Don’t honk the horn in front of Klai Kangwon Palace.
Must-see: Good night skyline! The northern end the rocky mountain of Khao Takiab has an amazing view; it’s the most colorful spot in Hua Hin at night.
Must-buy: Shopaholics should go to Chatsila Night Market.
Eat at: Coco 51
Drink at: Cantaloupe Island Bar & Bistro
Sleep at: The InterContinental Hua Hin