Resorts' own time, own target

At Song Saa, a private island resort in Cambodia, clocks are set forward an hour so guests can catch sunrise at a more rested time.
At Song Saa, a private island resort in Cambodia, clocks are set forward an hour so guests can catch sunrise at a more rested time.PHOTO: MARKUS GORTZ

In Cambodia, the private island resort of Song Saa has been cavalier with the clock since it opened three years ago.

Management calls it "island time" and sets all the clocks forward an hour to allow guests to catch sunrise at a more rested time.

The resort's boats, used for arrivals and departures, run on mainland time schedules in order to sync with real-time flights.

Two Four Seasons properties in the Maldives, Kuda Huraa and Landaa Giraavaru, both run an hour ahead of official time to extend daylight for guests.

For more prosaic reasons, the Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita in Mexico has long kept Central time, originally an hour ahead of its municipality's Pacific time, to stay in sync with the airport in nearby Puerto Vallarta, which runs on Central time.

In 2010, the town made dialling the clocks back an hour official.

The latest time-zone flout, Las Catalinas, a 486ha town development on Costa Rica's Pacific Coast, including vacation homes for rent surrounded by wilderness, instituted its own time zone this year by setting all clocks forward two hours.

"The best time for doing outdoor activities is early in the morning," said Mr Charles Brewer, managing partner of Las Catalinas, mentioning cooler temperatures, smoother water and more active wildlife.

But his advice to get out at 5.30 in the morning was having no impact until he moved time itself.

"It can be a wee bit confusing interacting with the rest of the world within a 486ha time zone," he admitted.

"It's all tongue in cheek. I'm hardly serious about this, but I am serious about getting people out in the early part of the day."

NEW YORK TIMES

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on November 22, 2015, with the headline 'Resorts' own time, own target'. Print Edition | Subscribe