On August 2nd, over 40 Rotary Club of Royal Hua Hin members and guests attended Swiss National Day celebrations at the Hua Hin Marriott Resort & Spa as a more festive alternative to the usual weekly Rotary meeting.
This is a club tradition with the club having special Swiss connections. Many members, including President Gianni Battistini and Past President (and event coordinator) Paul Grab are Swiss nationals. There is also a special relationship between Thailand and Switzerland which includes many royal connections. Before becoming the present King of Thailand, Bhumibol Adulyadej lived as a student on Lake Geneva. In 1950 he returned to Thailand having spent 17 of the 23 years of his life in Switzerland. His Majesty holds a degree in law and political science from the University of Lausanne.
VIP guest was His Excellency the Swiss Ambassador to Thailand, Ivo Sieber. After being the Ambassador of Switzerland to the Philippines, on 27th November 2015, he had the distinguished honor to present his Letters of Credence to His Royal Highness Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn. August 1st is really the Swiss National Day, but understandably attending celebrations in Bangkok was a necessary priority for the Ambassador. His attendance in Hua Hin the following day, which he described as “Thailand’s second city”, was more than acceptable and appreciated by an assembled capacity crowd at the Marriott Paksa Sawan Ballroom.
The Swiss national colours of red & white were on display with the guests wearing their own carefully chosen personal selection. Had it not been for the far better behaviour, the scene could have been mistaken for a gathering of celebrating football supporters; maybe Manchester United for Premier League fans or Sydney Swans for AFL followers! For more information: www.rotaryroyalhuahin.org