With its doors opening today, the "BoI Fair 2012" will certainly mesmerise visitors with a wide range of innovation created in light of global climatic changes.
Under a clear blue sky, the 42 pavilions at Impact Muang Thong Thani yesterday were ready to open to visitors, expected to reach 5 million by the time the fair ends on January 20.
Under the theme "Going Green for the Future", nearly all exhibitors present themselves as "greeners" through videos, movies and product exhibits.
For an exciting experience, not to be missed is the earthquake simulator at the SCG Pavilion, located near the Thailand Pavilion. The seconds-long ride gives visitors a glimpse of the Japanese experience when the devastating magnitude-7.2 earthquake hit their country last March.
Another recommended spot is the Idemitsu Pavilion, where visitors are taken on a journey to the Earth’s core, with exhibits that are normally on show at the energy company’s museum in Japan. Through a number of simulators and a sloping tunnel, it effectively gives a feeling that you are riding a speedy vessel to the centre of the planet.
Among the exhibits at other pavilions, the giant tapioca roots in front of the CP Pavilion are astonishing. The group has also creatively erected a panel lined with its ready meals, which can be flipped open to let visitors into its "Kitchen of the World".
Meanwhile, a long, tall water curtain awaits visitors at the Honda Pavilion.
Last but not least, the pavilion designs should inspire many wannabe architects.
Indorama Ventures invested Bt25 million to decorate Thailand’s first pavilion made from PET (polyethylene terephthalate), reflecting the idea of living with recycling in the future world. Its pavilion has been created from more than 25,000 used PET bottles.
Kan Trakulhoon, president and CEO of Siam Cement Group, said the high-investment pavilions at the fair could play a part in restoring foreign investor confidence.
Participating companies are showing their latest technology and future products, representing the
country’s industrial development, he added.
However, visitors should be prepared for some hiccups, particularly traffic jams, bright sunlight at the outdoor venue where the highlights – 42 pavilions – stand, shortages of food, and some diesel fumes despite the fair's green theme.
For traffic, closely follow the signs to parking areas, from where you can take a shuttle service to the venue, which is both outdoor and indoor.
Arriving at the outdoor venue during the day, an umbrella or hat is recommended as there are few trees in the area. Solar cells are brilliantly used as shades in rest areas, but they cannot effectively absorb the heat.
Bring your own food, as only McDonald’s is available on-site, and a piece of pineapple pie costs Bt30.
Around the area, you are shuttled by Impact buses, which are unfortunately run on diesel. It would be much better if the i-MiEV and electric cars seen at the show could be used to facilitate commuters.