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Published May 20. 2014 4:00AM

Top American companies including pharmaceutical giant Pfizer Inc. are saving at least $550 billion in taxes by holding profits in overseas tax havens, according to a report Monday by the advocacy group Citizens for Tax Justice.

The report said 28 U.S. corporations acknowledge paying less than 10 percent in taxes on foreign holdings totaling $409 billion. Pfizer, which the report said has subsidiaries in Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, Ireland, the Isle of Jersey, Luxembourg and Singapore, “does not disclose how much of its $69 billion in offshore profits are stashed in these tax havens.”

“Corporations exploit all manner of loopholes to avoid paying their fair share, and then they get their lobbyists and allies on Capitol Hill to say this tax dodging is justified because the U.S. corporate income tax rate is too high,” Robert McIntyre, director of the advocacy group, said in a statement.

But McIntyre said U.S. corporate tax rates are not much different from those in other developed countries, where these corporations make most of their profits.

In addition to New York-based Pfizer, the report looks into a variety of multinational corporations from all 50 states.

In Connecticut, General Electric, United Technologies, Praxair, Xerox, Priceline.com, Terex, Pitney Bowes and W.R. Berkley are among the companies placing money in foreign accounts to save on taxes.

The report said U.S.-based Fortune 500 corporations are holding profits of nearly $2 trillion in offshore accounts.

“While congressional hearings over the past few years have focused attention on the tax avoidance strategies of technology corporations like Apple and Microsoft … a diverse array of companies (is) using offshore tax havens,” the report said.

Among these are U.S. Steel, pharmaceutical marketer Eli Lilly, apparel maker Nike, financial powerhouse American Express, gaming empire Wynn Resorts and banking giant Bank of America.

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Pfizer, other companies accused of dodging taxes



Bitcoin or Gold? Squawk Walk Singapore feat. Chen Shien of Imaginary Markets
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Singapore (PRWEB) May 13, 2014

Reading about the illuminati and other secret societies sparked author Mohammed Rafayet Hossain Rimes curiosity as a young boy. Thus, after hearing a piece of news that an anonymous evil society has convinced tons of people to infiltrate the internet, Rime realized that he can write an adventure book about the topic. He now introduces Maniac In Blue (M.I.B.), a heroic adventure novel.

Maniac In Blue (M.I.B.) tells the story of Ban-Man, a humble maniac with many hopes and dreams. Ban-Man accidentally divulges a deep secret he is not supposed to share. Now, he has to stop the secret from reaching a wicked professor, Larvoger. After defeating Larvoger, the Demoncar let a spark out of him and affected Joney Loansoney. Now, its up to Ban-Man to save the day.

In his first novel, Rime weaves together fantasy and action into a captivating tale portraying a young hero determined to save the world at all costs. A book for both young and adult readers, Maniac In Blue (M.I.B.) emphasizes the importance of having dreams in life and doing everything to turn them into reality.

Displaying remarkable courage and strength, Ban-Man will win readers admiration as he fulfills his mission to society. Rime believes that like Ban-Man, everyone can do great things for the world. His novel serves to inspire a spirit of unity among people to work together and make the world a better place.

Author Rime wishes to donate some money to the Autism Society (http://www.autism-society.org) for each book that will be sold.

For more information on this book, interested parties can log on to http://www.Xlibris.com.au.

About the Author

Mohammed Rafayet Hossain Rime was born in Bangladesh in December 2003. He moved to Singapore in December 2007 with his family. He is a student of Primary 5 (Standard 5) of Unity Primary School in Singapore. He loves to play online games and watch cartoons when he has the time. He also loves to write stories in his diary when time permits. Rime started writing stories and drawing cartoons on paper since he was in Primary 1 (Standard 1).

Maniac In Blue (M.I.B.) * by Mohammed Rafayet Hossain Rime Publication Date: April 15, 2014 Trade Paperback; AU$19.99; 64 pages; 9781493135769 Trade Hardback; AU$39.99; 64 pages; 9781499000023 e-book; AU$4.25; 9781493135776

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Primary School Student Debuts With Science Fiction

Windfalls lost to artful dodgers.

Australian companies sent almost $60 billion to related parties in tax havens in 2012, with payments to Singapore and Ireland featuring high on the list, according to new data.

The data, never before released by the Australian Tax Office, provides an insight into how multinational groups shuffle money between countries and comes amid an international push to halt the use of tax havens by major corporations.

Due to their low tax rates, Singapore and Ireland are used by multinationals, especially technology companies such as Google and Apple, as locations for sales hubs or corporate headquarters.

In 2012 almost $40 billion was sent to Singapore, which led the payments table despite being only Australia’s fourth-largest import market that year, according to Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade data.

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At more than $7.5 billion, Ireland, which ranks 32nd among Australia’s trading partners, was sixth on the payments table.

Mark Zirnsak, a representative of the Tax Justice Network, said the data demonstrated the need for Australia to be aggressive in its pursuit of companies that shift profits offshore. He said it highlighted the need for greater transparency around corporate transactions to establish which transactions were legitimate and not simply tax dodging.

”There are some very concerning transfers here that need an explanation,” he said. ”If companies aren’t going to voluntarily disclose this information to the public, then there needs to be an explanation as to why money is ending up in these exotic places.”

The ATO data shows that Australia was also on the receiving end of flows from tax havens. Switzerland was the top source of revenue for Australian companies, at $35.6 billion in revenue, and Singapore came second at $12.3 billion.

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Singapore, Ireland top tax havens

Australian companies sent almost $60 billion to related parties in tax havens in 2012, with payments to Singapore and Ireland featuring high on the list, according to new data.

The data, never before released by the Australian Tax Office, provides an insight into how multinational groups shuffle money between countries and comes amid an international push to halt the use of tax havens by major corporations.

Due to their low tax rates, Singapore and Ireland are used by multinationals, especially technology companies such as Google and Apple, as locations for sales hubs or corporate headquarters.

In 2012 almost $40 billion was sent to Singapore, which led the payments table despite being only Australia’s fourth-largest import market that year, according to Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade data.

Advertisement

At more than $7.5 billion, Ireland, which ranks 32nd among Australia’s trading partners, was sixth on the payments table.

Mark Zirnsak, a representative of the Tax Justice Network, said the data demonstrated the need for Australia to be aggressive in its pursuit of companies that shift profits offshore. He said it highlighted the need for greater transparency around corporate transactions to establish which transactions were legitimate and not simply tax dodging.

”There are some very concerning transfers here that need an explanation,” he said. ”If companies aren’t going to voluntarily disclose this information to the public, then there needs to be an explanation as to why money is ending up in these exotic places.”

The ATO data shows that Australia was also on the receiving end of flows from tax havens. Switzerland was the top source of revenue for Australian companies, at $35.6 billion in revenue, and Singapore came second at $12.3 billion.

However, a BusinessDay analysis of the ATO data shows Australian companies paid $1.22 billion more to 26 tax havens, including Singapore, Ireland and Luxembourg, than they received from the same countries.

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Aussie companies make the most of tax havens

Unless stronger forces prevail, the U.S. is set to relinquish authority of Internet domain naming and maintenance to an international multistakeholder group next year. The move will endanger First Amendment rights, national security and economic growth.

U.S. control of this space has been critical to protecting the freedom of expression throughout the globe.

But the new governing group includes the governments of Russia, China and other authoritarian regimes with abysmal track records on free speech.

Since the Internets inception, the U.S. has overseen the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), which assigns and maintains domain names, ensuring individuals and organizations can act online without political interruption or harassment.

But the Obama administration recently agreed to hand ICANN over to a global community of businesses, public interest groups, academics, businesses and governments. Russia and China have postured for this for years.

ICANN head Fadi Chehade said all governments are welcome to be involved in the organizations new rules, and its diverse stakeholders deserve a voice in its governance.

But only countries with constitutional protections for free speech should be in charge of ensuring access to the Internet.

Authoritarian regimes and dictators will suppress human rights and breach international diplomacy with new power, just as they do in other areas of rule. In the past, Saudi Arabia tried to outlaw such domain names as .gay, .bible, .islam and .wine.

Under U.S. control these actions were stopped. But one can only imagine Vladimir Putins response to a website encouraging Ukrainians to protest his actions.

The new groups March meeting in Singapore was less than transparent. Few reports are public, and it is clear theres no plan to keep despots from engaging in censorship.

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Editorial: Global web governance threatens free speech

That's epic!

Transhuman Comments Off
Mar 302014

Mythological narratives are getting a major upgrade with science fiction and fantasy writers injecting them with strong doses of reinterpretation and realism, finds Daniel Pinto

Writers are ushering India’s myths into the realm ofspeculative fiction such as sci-fi and fantasy. One such writer isUS-based entrepreneur and IT professional Ravi V whose The ExiledPrince, the first in his Crystal Guardian trilogy, was releasedrecently. The series, told from Rama’s point of view, begins and endsin the British Raj and seeks to seamlessly connect magic, futuristictechnology and the mystical Crystal of Creation which is critical tomankind’s survival.”The series explains events that happen in Rama’slife and the reason why his name sounds in every corner of thiscountry,” says Ravi.However, the writer, who spent three years researchinglegends before embarking upon the series, maintains that he isn’tretelling folklore.

“My series is not the Ramayana; it just usesthe tale as a vehicle to deliver the plot. The book would be auniquely presented perspective with twists and turns in the sciencefiction format, and as one reads between the lines, the lateral plotwill present itself”.When one mentions the marriage of science-fiction andscripture, the seminal comic series Ramayan 3392 AD which wasenvisioned by filmmaker Shekhar Kapur and self-help guru DeepakChopra comes to mind. The series, which started in the now defunctVirgin Comics in 2006 in the US, details the exploits of Prince Ramain a post-apocalyptic future where mankind is plagued by Ravan,depicted as a transhuman entity.Shamik Dasgupta, the writer of the series, reveals howthe characters in his universe differ from those in myth.

“Wemade them more realistic and instilled real modern human emotions inthem except Ravan, who is a synthetic being. Rama doesn’t havegreatness bestowed upon him.From the beginning he has to strive andfight for greatness, he has to prove himself in this postmodern,savage, dystopian world, and it is not easy, not by a long shot.”Dasgupta credits the series for revolutionising the artof graphic novels in India. “It is true that Ramayan 3392 AD isresponsible for the emergence of modern graphic novels and comicbooks in India, with high caliber art and intricate storytellingmeant for all ages and not just kids.”Another sci-fi work which is injected with a heavy doseof mythology is The Guardians of Karma. The novel, penned by MohanVizhakat, CTO & EVP of Manappuram Finance Ltd, fills the voidthat is India’s prehistoric past with a saga that sees two advancedcivilizations, the spiritually inclined Dev Lok and theall-conquering Daityan Empire, face off.

“The idea germinated few years back while readingabout the apparent disconnect between Indian mythology’s rich legacyand the lack of any tangible archaeological evidence to support it.This got me thinking that if the myths had any shred of truth, theymust have been long forgotten or misinterpreted, either because ithappened so far back in prehistory that no records have survived orpossibly because all such evidence must be deep under sea ever sincemuch of the habitable world during the ice-age became submerged,during the deluge following global ice-melt,” says Vizhakat.”The book also explores the age-old wisdom of thescriptures from the perspective of modern scientific analysis,especially considering latest advancements in the fields ofrelativity, quantum mechanics, dark energy and biocentrism,”says Vizhakat who added that he relied heavily on mythological themessuch as the destruction of the demonic realms of Tripura depicted ashi-tech, free-floating cities.What is it about the golden age of yore that makes itsuch a haven for anarchronistic technological advancement?

“Anythingrelative to ancient Vedic mythologies can be looked at from thescience fiction point of view. It is known that, the father ofnuclear bomb, RJ Oppenheimer had quoted the Gita and has mentionedthat he may not have been the first to know about these atomicweapons. Take the Brahmastra; it is said as a source that can destroyworlds, like a nuclear weapon. But then these legends used to firethem from a bow and arrow! Did that technology exist or was it purelyfiction? We can’t really say, but it does make a fantastic storyand that spawned imagination of several creative geniuses across theglobe,” says Ravi.The Aryavarta Chronicles, a series by KrishnaUdayasankar, a lecturer at at Nanyang Business School, Singapore, isanother example of a “genre-bending” fantasy books look at thepower tussles in the titular kingdom in India’s distant past. Thoughit reimagines the Mahabharata, there are supernatural elements.

But,that’s not to say there’s no sci-fi. “Utopia is supposed to be theultimate aim or achievement of humankind and science is the tool thatwill get us there. This is the premise of the story. An order ofscholars, the Firewrights, believe that their science and technologyis the means to peace and prosperity until things go wrong and theirweapons became a cause for terrible bloodshed,” she explains.She happily categorises her books as fantasy. “Fantasystories have a structure or flow that fascinates me most of themare stories of an age, that show, in their own way, revolution andchange. It is this element that fascinates me, as also the fact thatthere is a certain sense of dramatic growth and transformation thatcharacters go through as though the story is their journey. Ifeel quite thrilled when readers place The Aryavarta Chronicles asfantasy, the reason being that I think there is the same sense ofmythopoesy, the creation of a story-world distinct and complete initself, not unlike Tolkien’s Middle Earth,” she says

Elaborating on why she chose to keep things real, shesays “Both religion and mythology have been, and still are, usedto legitimise or justify social elements that range from irrelevantto downright reprehensible. So, the attempt to demystify ancientstories is like a quest for a more believable truth, an attempt tomake these amazing characters and stories more ‘real.’ I want tobelieve that things were not always the way they are now; thatequality, compassion and reason were things heroines and heroesfought for and that’s what makes my stories fantasy.”

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That's epic!

A trip sampling the diversity of Southeast Asian destinations can take you from the sleek modernity of Singapore to the ancient temples of Cambodias Angkor Wat. And then there are the beaches of Thailand: relaxing and beautiful with gorgeous stretches of sand, water sports, nearby outdoor activities and cheap food and drink.

Off the Andaman Sea are famed Phuket and Koh Phi Phi, which rose to international prominence after being featured in the Leonardo DiCaprio film The Beach, but the beaches along the Gulf of Thailand have an equally renowned trio of Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao.

Each of these has its own charms and attractions, and regular boat service makes it easy to travel among them. All three have vibrant party scenes, as well, drawing young people from around the world.

As for the recent political unrest in Thailand, tourist numbers at the beaches were down midwinter as some visitors canceled trips, but the islands have been unaffected and some hotels have been willing to negotiate room rates.

Heres a look at some of the Thai island destinations:

Koh Samui

This is the main transport center for the islands, with a fancy airport it even includes its own Park Avenue with designer shops and built-up infrastructure.

The island boasts gorgeous beaches all over its coasts. Chaweng Beach appeals to the young; its dotted with hotels for all budgets, open-air massage parlors where you can get an hourlong treatment for less than $10, and vendors peddling everything from corn on the cob and pineapple to beachwear and decorative wooden keepsakes.

Thats by day. By night, the main drag, a block away from the beach, buzzes with thumping music and busy restaurants. The laid-back daytime schedule means the venues dont become crowded until about 10 p.m. or 11 p.m.; penny-pinchers should head to Walking Street for cheap pint bottles of Chang beer, barbecued crocodile or fruit shakes, affordable swimwear and sarongs, and people-watching.

Koh Phangan

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From peacefulness to wild parties on three Thai islands

Mar 182014



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Illuminati Singapore Autumn Annie Trailer
Freemason ESOTERISM high level evilness call it. Singapore Russia rt ww3 bombs nuclear war putin Russian nazis kneeology Jamie Foxx Spiderman movie Malaysia …

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Singapore’s Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and UK’s University of Southampton (UOS) jointly announced Wednesday the official launch of a joint laboratory in Maritime and Offshore Engineering R&D to develop innovative technological solutions through modelling and simulation using high performance comuting technology to solve technical issues facing the maritime, energy and offshore sectors.

The joint laboratory (Joint Lab), operated by A*STARs Institute of High Performance Computing (IHPC) and UOS’ Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute (SMMI), is located on A*STAR premises to promote engagement and more seamless scientific exchanges with researchers from other research fields, such as those from the Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech), and the Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE).

“The strategic aim of the IHPC-SMMI Joint Lab is to deepen the understanding of the science and technology deployed in the design, construction and operation of future ships used, and new offshore structures that are utilized for the exploration and extraction of oil, gas and renewable energy sources from deep oceans under extreme harsh environments and translate these insights into impactful industrial applications,” the joint press release said.

The research areas seek to address two major challenges facing the maritime and offshore sector:

This joint lab is another key component toward building a hub to catalyze further R&D (research and development) activities in marine and offshore companies in Singapore. IHPC is keen to promote the development of high performance computing techniques that can be applied to pertinent issues, that will lead to improved design of offshore structures and better understanding of their performance and reliability in harsher environment and more severe conditions. We intend to draw upon participation from industry players so that the benefits of the research can propagate through the economic sector, Professor Alfred Huan, executive director of IHPC said.

The multidisciplinary research leverages the complementary expertise and skillsets possessed by the SMMI researchers, and IHPC research scientists from the Fluid Dynamics and Engineering Mechanics departments. The collaboration draws upon IHPC’s strength in computational modelling and simulation, and SMMIs strength in marine research. The Joint Lab projects will focus on developing solutions in the marine and offshore sector where the technical challenges are complex and often beyond the capabilities of a single organisation.

The Joint Lab will undertake projects in collaboration with partners in the maritime and offshore R&D community, including researchers from National University of Singapore (NUS) and the IHPC-Lloyds Register Joint Lab co-located within IHPC premises.

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Singapore, UK Researchers Launch Joint Lab for Marine, Offshore R&D

Topics: apple, editors picks, ireland, taxation, tax havens, tech

THE peak group for Australian taxpayers has called for a crackdown on international firms avoiding tax through offshore havens.

The call from Taxpayers Australia came after US tech giant Apple was accused of shifting $8.9 billion in untaxed profits from its Australian operations to Ireland over the past decade.

Taxpayers Australia’s Head of Tax, Mark Chapman, said: “Today’s disclosures about Apple highlight that there is no level playing field for Australian businesses when it comes to tax.

“Firms like Apple are able to set up complex structures which see all their profits siphoned into an Irish holding company which, astonishingly, pays no tax at all anywhere in the world, whilst its Australian operations are no more than low margin shop fronts fully taxable on tiny profits because they are loaded with costs charged by overseas Apple entities.”

Last tax year alone, Apple reported pre-tax earnings of a mere $88.5 million while it simultaneously sent an estimated $2 billion of income from Australian sales to Ireland via Singapore, where it had previously negotiated a tax deal.

“This is all legal but decidedly unfair,” Mr Chapman said.

Apple has not formally responded to the claims in the Australian Financial Review but made it clear it was meeting all of its obligations under Australian tax laws.

Apple says the figures used as the basis for the AFR article were from 2000 to 2009 with no more recent figures.

Apple has not confirmed the accuracy of the figures used by AFR.

Read this article:
Call for crackdown after Apple shifts $9b profits offshore

1. Singapore, 5 March 2014 Building on the fruitful past decade of UK-Singapore cooperation in scientific research and development, A*STARs Institute of High Performance Computing (IHPC) and the Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute (SMMI) officially launched a joint laboratory in Maritime and Offshore Engineering R&D today, to develop innovative technological solutions through modelling and simulation using high performance computing technology, aimed at solving technical issues faced by the maritime, energy and offshore sectors.

2. The opening of the joint laboratory symbolises both countries continued commitment to the fostering of greater synergy and cooperation in moving the frontiers of science. The Joint Lab opening was witnessed by UK Minister of State for Universities and Science, The Rt Hon David Willetts MP.

3. As a globally leading maritime hub that is home to many companies in the offshore sector, Singapore provides an excellent base for the development of innovative technological solutions. The long legacy of the UK as a global maritime powerhouse further ensures the synergy of complementary expertise from both organisations that will greatly enhance the maritime, energy and offshore sectors and bring about economic benefits to both countries.

4. The strategic aim of the IHPC-SMMI Joint Lab is to deepen the understanding of the science and technology deployed in the design, construction and operation of future ships used, and new offshore structures that are utilised for the exploration and extraction of oil, gas and renewable energy sources from deep oceans under extreme harsh environments and translate these insights into impactful industrial applications.

5. The research areas are aimed at addressing two major challenges faced by the maritime and offshore sector:

6. Prof. Alfred Huan, Executive Director of IHPC, said: This joint lab is another key component toward building a hub to catalyse further R&D activities in marine and offshore companies in Singapore. IHPC is keen to promote the development of high performance computing techniques that can be applied to pertinent issues, that will lead to improved design of offshore structures and better understanding of their performance and reliability in harsher environment and more severe conditions. We intend to draw upon participation from industry players so that the benefits of the research can propagate through the economic sector.

7. Prof. Don Nutbeam, Vice-Chancellor, University of Southampton, said: The Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute is a world-leading hub for international collaboration which really has no parallel in terms of its scale and ambition. With Singapore being home to the worlds leading maritime economy and supporting major strengths in marine and maritime engineering we are very pleased and excited for the SMMI to be working in collaboration with A*STAR here to deliver a number of projects to develop safer, improved and more efficient offshore and marine structures and ships to deliver real and tangible economic and environmental benefits for the future.

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:: 05, Mar 2014 :: SINGAPORE AND UK RESEARCHERS TEAM UP TO TRANSFORM MARINE & OFFSHORE R&D THROUGH JOINT LAB



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Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 Liberty Walk LB Performance Larini Exhaust Loud Sound
Maxson Goh Films The Rare Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 by LB Performance and fitted with Larini Exhaust accelerating out of Millenia Walk, Singapore. Photos …

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Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 Liberty Walk LB Performance Larini Exhaust Loud Sound – Video

TICKS ALL THE BOXES: Why not lie back in a shaded hammock on the stunning Koh Samui.

A trip sampling the diversity of Southeast Asian destinations can take you from the sleek modernity of Singapore to the ancient temples of Cambodia’s Angkor Wat.

And then there are the beaches of Thailand: relaxing, beautiful, and for the adventurous holiday-maker, a lot more exotic than Miami.

Thai beaches offer gorgeous stretches of sand, water sports, nearby outdoor activities and cheap food and drink.

Off the Andaman Sea are Phuket and Koh Phi Phi, which rose to international prominence after being featured in the Leonardo DiCaprio film The Beach.

But there are also the renowned beaches along the Gulf of Thailand – Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao.

Each of these has its own charms and attractions, and regular boat services make it easy to travel to them.

All three also have fantastic party scenes.

KOH SAMUI

This is the main transport centre for the islands, with a fancy airport.

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The irresistable lure of Thai beaches

KOH PHANGAN, Thailand A trip sampling the diversity of Southeast Asian destinations can take you from the sleek modernity of Singapore to the ancient temples of Cambodias Angkor Wat. And then there are the beaches of Thailand: relaxing, beautiful, and for the adventurous spring-breaker, a lot more exotic than Miami. Thai beaches offer gorgeous stretches of sand, water sports, nearby outdoor activities and cheap food anddrink.

Off the Andaman Sea are famed Phuket and Koh Phi Phi, which rose to international prominence after being featured in the Leonardo DiCaprio film The Beach, but the beaches along the Gulf

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Sunrise Beach in Koh Phangan, Thailand, is among the destinations that offer an exotic alternative to more traditional spring-breakspots. (Full-size photo)

KOH PHANGAN, Thailand A trip sampling the diversity of Southeast Asian destinations can take you from the sleek modernity of Singapore to the ancient temples of Cambodias Angkor Wat. And then there are the beaches of Thailand: relaxing, beautiful, and for the adventurous spring-breaker, a lot more exotic than Miami. Thai beaches offer gorgeous stretches of sand, water sports, nearby outdoor activities and cheap food anddrink.

Off the Andaman Sea are famed Phuket and Koh Phi Phi, which rose to international prominence after being featured in the Leonardo DiCaprio film The Beach, but the beaches along the Gulf of Thailand have an equally renowned trio of Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao. Each of these has its own charms and attractions, and regular boat service makes it easy to travel among them. All three have fantastic party scenes, as well and while not traditional spring-break destinations, American college kids would certainly feel at homethere.

As for the recent political unrest in Thailand, tourist numbers at the beaches were down midwinter as some visitors canceled trips, but those who went ahead found the islands as lovely and as much fun as ever. And due to cancelations, some hotels are even willing to negotiate roomrates.

This is the main transport center for the islands, with a fancy airport it even includes its own Park Avenue with designer shops and built-up infrastructure. While the island boasts gorgeous beaches all over its coasts, head to Chaweng Beach for a proper spring-break vibe. The beach is dotted with hotels for all budgets, open-air massage parlors where you can get an hour-long treatment for less than $10, and vendors peddling everything from corn on the cob and pineapple to beachwear and decorative woodenkeepsakes.

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Thai beaches an exotic spring-break alternative – Sun, 16 Feb 2014 PST



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