Agoda in the News

Agoda Wishes You a Merry Christmas in Asia with Last Minute Availability & Hot Hotel Deals

SINGAPORE, December 13, 2007

To join in on the Christmas festivities and welcome 2008, Agoda Company, an online travel and discount hotel bookings website is offering customers a number of last-minute, unbeatable hotel deals in Asia.

Definitely the most romantic of the Thai celebrations, the popular Loy Kratong is a must–experience for those visiting the land of smiles. Held on the 24th of November this year, the festival was originally adopted by Buddhists during the reign of Thai King Rama IV in 1863.

Loy translates to "float" in Thai, while Kratong is the tray used made from banana leaves. The light from the candle is to honor the Lord Buddha, while the act of floating symbolizes the release of anger, resentment or faults in a person's character. Hence the act of floating a kratong is a means for a person to make amends and start afresh.

However, most Thais also float their kratong to honor and thank the goddess of the rivers and waterways, Mae Nam, who they also believe will bring good luck. This relates to the romantic legend of Nang Nopamas, who was a royal consort to King Ramkhamhaeng (the founder of Sukhothai in Northern Thailand).

According to the legend, Lady Nopamas made the first Kratong as a gift to please the river goddess and set it afloat in the palace canals so that it would pass by her lover, the King. The King was enchanted by this creation. This is why it is believed that if two lovers set a kratong into a waterway and it stays afloat until it has left their sight, the love will last forever.

Celebrations abound across Thailand during Loy Kratong, especially in Sukhothai, Chiang Mai and along Bangkok's Chao Phraya river. Beauty queen contests also run concurrently with the festival called "Nopamas Queens Contests" adding more color into the mix of activities.

While the event is very popular and most hotels in prime spots are booked out, Agoda.com has exclusive availability and competitive rates for the following hotels:

Bangkok
• The Oriental Hotel – Rates starting at US$ 335
• Menam Riverside – Rates starting at US$ 68

Chiang Mai
• Rarinjinda Wellness Spa & Resort – Rates starting at US$ 167
• Ayatana Hamlet & Spa – Rates starting at US$ 97

Ayuttaya
• Woraburi Ayothaya   Rates starting at US$ 36
• Ayothaya Riverside   Rates starting at US$ 25

Pattaya
• Dusit Pattaya   Rates starting at US$ 113
• Woodlands Resort   Rates starting at US$ 69

Phuket
• At Panta Hotel – Rates starting at US$ 88
• Alpina Phuket Nalina Hotel – Rates starting at US$ 84

For more information regarding Agoda, please access its website at www.agoda.com or contact the Agoda Team via e-mail at info@agoda.com