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Man About Town

HOTEL GM RESHUFFLE
Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra Golf and Spa resort held a swank cocktail party on Wednesday night to welcome the new general Manager, Fabrice Ducry, whose last port of call was the Sofitel Dubai Jumeirah Beach where he was resident manager, and part of the pre-opening team of the glitzy 438 -room Dubai hotel.

Ducry is a graduate of the prestigious Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne in Switzerland, and he has also worked at The Ritz-Carlton Dubai, and Le Beau Rivage, Mauritius.

He brings much valued expertise to Siem Reap and replaces the irrepressible Charles-Henri Chevet who has been promoted to general manager at Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra.

Over at Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor, Christian Sack has been appointed as the new general manager effective August 23.  

He has more than 22 years of hotel experience and has worked with international hotel chains such as Orient Express, and Banyan Tree.

Meanwhile, Greg Williams has been signed on as general manager of Siem Reap’s recently rebranded Alila Sothea 39-room boutique hotel.

Williams, originally from Sydney, Australia, was previously the general manager of Alila Villas Hadahaa in the Maldives.

Furthermore, the former Alila in Luang Prabang, Laos, has been rebranded as HÔtel de La Paix Luang Prabang.

Former Bed Hotel Management executive Douglas Louden will continue to manage the HÔtel de la Paix in Siem Reap, while also getting involved in the re-branding of HÔtel de la Paix Luang Prabang.

GIANT BUDDHA UPDATE
The saga of mystical San Francisco-based Indian philanthropist Madam Sulata Sarkar and her amazing giant Buddha statue in Siem Reap continues.

Word of her worthy project, the carving of a huge seven-metre-tall stone Buddha, is now spreading internationally, and this week IndiaWest.com wrote about Madam Sarkar and her trusty sidekick, Siem Reap guide Mr Bobo.

IndiaWest noted that: “The Phnom Penh Post [i.e. 7Days] has followed the construction of the statue from the beginning.”

The 80-ton statue is made of pink sandstone and sits on a lotus stand, which in turn sits on a large pedestal, and was carved by a disabled former soldier-turned-stone-carver, 78-year-old Him Tour.

There have been numerous delays in bringing this project to its conclusion but the good Madam is positive that the work will soon be unveiled in all its final glory
Madam Sarkar told IndiaWest: “By the first week of January 2011 the installation of the lotus and Buddha was completed. The Apsara Authority is putting a roof and water pond around the pedestal and completing the pavement and garden around it. “We expect everything to be completed by the end of December 2011.”

Here’s hoping.

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