Pimalai Resort & Spa, the iconic and idyllic five-star retreat in Koh Lanta, has reaffirmed its commitment to environmental conservation and community engagement by hosting a spectacular sculpture contest at the recent Laanta Lanta Festival.
At this exciting event, which took place in March 2020, Pimalai invited kids from local schools on Koh Lanta to create imaginative sealife-themed sculptures using recycled materials. With guidance from expert instructors, including Koh Niair from the Art Faculty at Prince of Songkla University, and Khun Mook, a Bangkok-based designer who specialises in waste products, the teams of students, teachers and parents presented a series of amazing artworks that enthralled festival-goers.
These eye-catching entries included colourful clownfish, squid, crabs, starfish and more, all crafted using waste products such as plastic bottles, drink cans, discarded shoes and food packets, many of which had washed up on the island’s stunning shores. One of the most evocative artworks depicted a family of sea turtles caught in a fishing net, showing how the children are aware of the plight of marine creatures.
The first prize, as chosen by Mr. Somsak Kittidhrakul, President of Krabi Provincial Administration, was a sculpture of a seahorse made from rubber flip-flops which had been collected from the beaches of Koh Lanta. The winning team from Baan Tung Yee Peng School was presented with a trophy and cash prize of 12,000 Baht.
This activity, which was launched in cooperation with B. Grimm, the multinational conglomerate active in healthcare, energy, building and industrial systems, real estate, e-commerce, and transport, succeeded in educating the youngsters about the importance of marine pollution and waste reduction, while also showcasing their artistic flair. In fact, the contest was such a success that Pimalai has been invited to expand the event for next year’s Laanta Lanta Festival to include villages, hotels, restaurants and other business operators on the island.
All the sculptures will now be on display on the island until April 2020 at different locations, including the jetty in Koh Lanta Old Town – the main entry point to the island and the Saladan Bridge area. This exhibition will be a strong symbol of the island community’s commitment to sustainability in Mu Koh Lanta National Park.
“We are thrilled with the success of our sculpture contest, and especially with the impact it had on local schoolchildren. At Pimalai, we consider ourselves Koh Lanta’s guardians; this is not our island – we are simply trying to preserve it for future generations. Ocean pollution in one of the biggest threats to our pristine ecosystem and projects such as this sculpture contest help to raise awareness about this critical issue, while also educating future generations and letting the kids express themselves through art,” said Patrice Landrein, Pimalai’s General Manager.
This marks the latest important environmental campaign conducted by Pimalai; for the last three years, the resort has worked with Thai government’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife & Plant Conservation on coral restoration programmes at Koh Rok and Koh Haa, and it is planning to expand this initiative in future.