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S Hotels and Resorts partners with Thailand Marine Discovery Centre in conservation of vulnerable bamboo shark

S Hotels and Resorts partners with Thailand Marine Discovery Centre in conservation of vulnerable bamboo shark
November 20, 2021

Global hospitality company - S Hotels and Resorts - has collaborated with the Phuket Marine Biological Centre and shark protection program at Marine Discovery Centre in Thailand’s Phi Phi Islands.

The important new partnership to breed, nurture and release bamboo sharks will be led by resident marine biologists at SAii Phi Phi Island Village’s Marine Discovery Centre, as part of the company’s long-term commitment to protecting the environment

The Phuket Marine Biological Centre will entrust the care of bamboo shark eggs to the Marine Discovery Centre  at SAii Phi Phi Island Village

The new SOS (Save Our Sharks) program will see S Hotels & Resorts work hand-in-hand with experts from PMBC. Together, they will oversee every stage of the bamboo sharks’ development, from incubating eggs and nurturing them at the resort’s Shark Nursery Pond, to releasing the juveniles back into their natural environment.

This is the latest in a series of campaigns led by the Marine Discovery Centre, an innovative facility which serves as the nerve centre of SAii Phi Phi Island Village’s environmental efforts. This interactive hub houses indoor and outdoor exhibition areas, video rooms and aquariums, presenting a fascinating window into the underwater world and driving key projects such as coral propagation, mangrove planting, and breeding and release programmes for native fauna.

Dirk De Cuyper, Chief Executive of S Hotels & Resortsadvised “we are proud to join forces with Phuket Marine Biological Centre on this critical project. Bamboo sharks are classed as ‘vulnerable’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), so the SOS programme will play a crucial role in safeguarding a keystone species. This forms part of our company’s pledge to the planet, which is guided by our support for the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially the SDG14, ‘Life Below Water’, which focuses on the world’s oceans, seas and rivers.

“Our Marine Discovery Centres at SAii Phi Phi Island Village and SAii Lagoon Maldives play a crucial role in the preservation of their underwater ecosystems and the protection of wildlife. Led by resident marine biologists, they also educate our guests and local residents in our communities about the importance of conservation. We look forward to cooperating with our friends and colleagues at PMBC to save southern Thailand’s bamboo sharks.”

Dr. Kongkiat Kittiwatanawong, Director of the Phuket Marine Biological Centre added “our centre has trusted in the capability and expertise of Singha Estate in terms of marine life conservations considering the company’s experiences from the past projects. Besides, the company has employed many marine scientists and staff at Marine Discovery Centre, who have capabilities to take care of Bamboo shark eggs until they become juveniles.”

S Hotels & Resorts and Singha Estate have collaborated on many successful marine conservation campaigns. The ‘Phi Phi Is Changing’ project is aiming to solve the issue of coral bleaching, while the ‘Toh Wai Wai’ is helping to release clownfish, propagate coral and plant mangrove trees in Hat Noppharat Thara-Mu Ko Phi Phi National Park. In addition, a new partnership with Kasetsart University is using drones to monitor and photograph the coral reefs in the area. Earlier this year, the Marine Discovery Centre at SAii Phi Phi Island Village rescued and rehabilitated an injured bamboo shark and lionfish.

In the Maldives, coral propagation efforts by the Marine Discovery Centre team at SAii Lagoon Maldives led to a ten-fold expansion of the local reef, and the return of hawksbill sea turtles, scalloped hammerhead sharks and bottlenose wedgefish to the area. A pregnant Olive Ridley sea turtle was also found nesting on the beach in 2020 – the first recorded sighting of this species nesting in the Maldives.

S Hotels & Resorts has committed to abolishing single-use plastic, reducing waste, recycling water and championing the use of sustainable and biodegradable products. With so many initiatives ongoing, it is no surprise that the group has won multiple awards, including the ‘Green Leadership’ title at the Asia Responsible Enterprise Awards 2020. SAii Phi Phi Island Village was the ‘Marine & Nature’ winner in the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) UK Responsible Thailand Awards 2020, while Santiburi Koh Samui was awarded the 2020 - 2021 Green Hotel Award’s ‘Gold Level’ - the only resort in Samui to achieve this level out of over 100 properties that applied.

For more information about S Hotels & Resorts, visit

Image top: The Marine Discovery Centre will nurture the bamboo sharks in its Shark Nursery Pond, before releasing them back into their natural environment; image centre: The Phuket Marine Biological Center will entrust the care of bamboo shark eggs to the Marine Discovery Centre  at SAii Phi Phi Island Village; Image above: S Hotels & Resorts’ Marine Discovery Centres are interactive hubs that aim to educate guests and local residents about the importance of conservation

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30th April 2021 - K’gari World Heritage Discovery Centre now open on Queensland’s Fraser Island

27th April 2021 - Busselton’s Australian Underwater Discovery Centre aims for 2023 opening

14th December 2018 - WA Dolphin Discovery Centre delivers new tourism experience and attraction

9th June 2011 - Dolphin Discovery Centre redevelopment opens

17th November 2021 - Phuket kicks off Thailand’s tourism recovery with a focus on sport

2nd November 2021 - Anantara highlights COVIDSafe requirements as Thailand reopens borders to international tourism

1st April 2021 - GlobalData advises quarantine-free travel for vaccinated tourists will expedite Thailand’s tourism

1st January 2021 - Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort secures Tourism Authority of Thailand environmental award

15th March 2021 - SAii Phi Phi Island Village reopens with new facilities and upgraded accommodation

9th January 2014 - Zeavola resort’s clean sweap of beaches leaves Phi Phi green and pristine

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