Anantara Hotels, Resorts and Spas recently launched Black Ivory Coffee at its four Maldives resorts, following on from its Anantara Golden Triangle resort in Thailand. What is Black Ivory Coffee you ask? Well, it’s coffee that is digested and naturally refined by elephants in Thailand and costs $1,100 per kilogram.
Many coffee connoisseurs complain that coffee is often too bitter. That isn’t a problem when it comes to Black Ivory Coffee, since the enzymes produced during the elephant’s digestion break down the protein in the coffee, which is what causes the coffee’s bitterness. The best Thai Arabica beans are picked and then consumed and excreted by the elephants. After excretion, the beans are gathered by the elephant trainer and dried in the sun. Instead of shipping the beans elsewhere for refinement, the process takes place at Thailand’s Anantara’s Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation, where over 30 elephants, their trainers and families have been rescued and looked after.
After refinement, the coffee is ground and brewed in four minutes using late 19th century Austrian technology at a temperature of 93 degrees Celsius. The originality of the process doesn’t stop here though. Eight percent of the proceeds from the sale of the Black Ivory Coffee will go to hiring a veterinarian to care for the elephants at Anantara’s Golden Triangle resort, building a lab, and paying for medication for the elephants. Delicious Thai coffee and humanitarianism – that’s a winning combination!
In 2001, Anantara Resorts and Spas opened their first property in Hua Hin, Thailand, providing guests with experiences seeped in local cultural traditions and history. The resort chain then expanded into the Golden Triangle region of Thailand, with the Anantara Elephant Camp and then into Samui. Anantara Resorts and Spas branched out to the Maldives in 2006 and there are currently plans to open properties throughout Asia and the Middle East in the next several years. For more information on Anantara Resorts and Spas properties, please go to www.anantara.com