How Chiva-Som helped to preserve Krailart Niwate, the last remaining mangrove ecosystem in Hua Hin

The Krailart Niwate mangrove in Hua Hin

For hotels and resorts, guest experience is the number one priority.

But there is another goal which is becoming increasingly important for hotels and resorts everywhere: sustainability.

Most hotels and resorts will now have some form of sustainability or an environmental program.

And while for some, the emphasis on sustainability is a relatively new concept, others have put the environment front and centre of their business operations for many years.

Locally, the world renowned Chiva-Som International Health Resort has been at the forefront of sustainable best practices within the wellness and hospitality sector in Thailand for more than two decades

“At Chiva-Som this is our commitment since starting business in 1995 to deliver the professional and exceptional service to the guests as well as sustainability responsibility to the local community where we are, Chiva-Som General Manager Mr. Vaipanya Kongkwanyuen told Hua Hin Today.

“We believe that individual wellness must go hand-in-hand with environmental wellness”.

Since its foundation, Chiva-Som has been dedicated to operating at the world’s highest environmental, ethical and sustainable standards at all levels of operation.

Its pioneering and considered approach to sustainable practice has gained Chiva-Som a reputation as a respected authority on green practices within the travel industry.

The resort has initiated many projects for environmental and community sustainability including joining the United Nation Global Compact to contribute to delivering the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

New and innovative initiatives and policies are constantly being explored and employed throughout the resort. These include practices for energy efficiency and conservation, wastewater treatment and reuse, freshwater conservation, waste minimisation and recycling, air quality management and environmentally friendly product usage.

The resort’s approach to sustainability and the environment is also benefiting the community in Hua Hin.

In 2004, Chiva-Som formed the Preserve Hua Hin Group, as a community development organisation, under Royal Patronage of HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn to organise events such as carbon neutral, climate positive outdoor concerts, full marathon races, reforestation projects and beach clean-ups. The objective is to promote environmental awareness and preservation, and to increase social interaction in the local community.

Through Preserve Hua Hin, Chiva-Som is the environmental preservation steward of Krailart Niwate, the last remaining mangrove ecosystem in Hua Hin.

Krailart Niwate is the result of a collaboration between Chiva-Som, the Hua Hin municipality and Silpakorn University. Together, they have created the first ‘green’ ecotourism centre in Hua Hin, providing mangrove preservation and education to students, as well as the general public.

Krailart Niwate is a mangrove preservation and environmental wellness project spearheaded by Krip Rojanastien, Chairman and CEO of Chiva-Som and Chairman of the Preserve Hua Hin Group under the Royal patronage of HRH Princess Maha Sirindhorn. The Group has driven many environmental sustainability projects in Hua Hin.

Chiva-Som and Preserve Hua Hin have been developing the Krailart Niwate Mangrove Ecosystem Preservation & Science Education Centre by conducting reforestation projects at the mangrove, planting over 5,000 trees since 2007 and continuing to expand.

The resort also sponsored the construction of the 1,000-meter elevated interpretive boardwalk throughout the mangrove which cost THB 7 million (USD 210,000) in 2015. The aim of the project is to promote eco-spiritual tourism and raise awareness on the importance of the mangrove ecosystem.

The Chiva-Som team has been continuously planting mangroves every year and has expanded the area to 18 Rais in total up to now.

Krailart Niwate is located at the entrance of Wat Krailart temple, Hua Hin district, Prachub Khiri Khan, and is open daily, free to the public, for relaxation and for ecosystem education from 07.00 – 19.00.

The mangrove is open daily for the public to walk, run, relax and experience the ecosystem.