Day 9: Last day in Chennai

Unfortunately we had to cancel our factory visit of Royal Enfield. A remarkable producer of motorbikes in India, all their bikes are all handmade and are recognized as one of the finest in the nation. Canceling this visit had freed up our schedule, allowing us to do individual sightseeing trips, special massage treatments or simply just to sleep a little bit longer.

McDelivery

Individual sightseeing tours gave everybody the opportunity to explore the city by themselves.

We all gathered in the hotel lobby at 13:00, fully packed with our entire luggage we were all set to leave this vibrant city of Chennai. But before leaving we decided to have lunch in this City one last time. Honestly, who likes to travel with an empty stomach?
Our guide Kannan lead us to a very popular restaurant called fusion9. It is rumored that reservations have to be taken early in advance in order to get a table in this super fancy restaurant. But thanks to Kannan, who has managed that we would get a table for 20, we were able to experience an exceptional Indian cuisine one more time. After all, time flew by and we headed to the airport for our evening flight to New Dehli.

After arrival at Dehli international airport, a bus drove us to the nearby hotel. We will stay at this hotel for the next 4 days.

Day 7: Chennai – sight-seeing


Government Museum Chennai


MGR Memorial

Marina Beach

After waking up in the fabulous Marriott Hotel, sight-seeing was scheduled. The few steps between the hotel entrance and the waiting bus were enough to predict: It’s gonna be a terribly hot day!
First object to see was the Government Museum Chennai where we lionised lots of historic sculptures of Vishnu, Ganesh, Shiwa (not Mike), Buddha and his other friends. These sculptures were not as old as they seemed to be, some were “just” around 200 years. However, some were really amazing detailed elaborated. The zoological section showed all kinds of animals found in India, a few foreign species could be seen as well. Because the rooms of the museum were not cooled, everybody was glad to re-enter the bus, although we saw only few of the generally interesting museum.

The short visit in a park near the sea with the MGR Memorial and the Anna Memorial caused everybody to sweat, some only little, others a little more. It was quite muggy and hot, around 33°. Our last stop before lunch was at the “International Schrein of St. Thomas Basilica” where a mass was just in progress. The drive to the place where we were supposed to have lunch lead us through some lively streets. Tons of people, hectic traffic, markets, beggars and even artists could be seen.

After a typical Indian buffet and some moments of rest, our two buses carried us to marina beach, a part of the remarkable wide beach of Chennai. On our way along the sea to get to marina beach we saw empty parts of beach, fishermen maintaining their nets and finally the well populated area of marina beach. The 250 meters from the street to the sea were characterised by Indian children, as well as adults, extensively watching us. As swimming was prohibited, we soon went back to the buses.
The heat and moisture was heavy for us to take and we all were quite idle and powerless. Back in the hotel at 16:30 most went in their rooms, some went to the gymnastics-room and few took a massage.

By Kristian Bubalo, Dario Cocchi, Simon Guldener

Day 6: Sightseeing in Hyderabad and flight to Chennai

After a very good dinner and an exiting night out (at least for some of the guys), the day started an hour later than usual. Giving us a chance to rest a little bit longer, we met at 9 at the hotel entrance and headed to a shopping mall in Hyderabad. It took us about 30min to get to the “Hypermall” located at the outskirts of the city, only to find out that they open at 11 o’clock. So we decided to visit a special market known for its unique handcrafted art items, such as wooden sculptures, pearls or luxurious pashmina shawls. After driving another 30min, we found out that this market has moved to another location. However, we decided to go back to the shopping mall as we were running out of time.

On arrival we have split up and moved on to an individual shopping trip. The mall consists of more than 50 shops and was beautifully decorated.  Although the “Sale” season was still on the prices were moderate.

We met at 14:00 at our usual restaurant within the Savory hotel. The hotel has just been opened and therefore it was still unknown to the locals, causing the rickshaw ride to be an adventure, once again.

The lunch was very good, truly one of the best restaurants in Hyderabad! We headed back to our hotel afterwards to pack our luggage and to check out. After loading our baggage on the bus, we shared some of our Swiss Chocolate with the local kids and a few workers from the construction site next to our hotel.

Mr. Boev from his social side

As we headed to the airport, the bus took us through various beautiful sceneries with lots of green vegetation and impressive rock structures, a pleasant chance of scenery in a very urban trip so far.

A spectacular view on Chennai’s skyline was revealed as we approached the airport. Later after we loaded our baggage on the bus, the driver took us to the Marriot hotel where we had dinner and a few good drinks.

Day 13 – Happy Chinese New Year!

First of all, happy Chinese New Year to all! 2011 is the rabbit year, a lucky year in which you can catch your breath and calm your nerves, so congratulations and good luck to all those bunnies out there!

Getting ready to celebrate!

This day was very particular for each one of us, given the fact that it was our free day when we landed in Beijing.
Wake up call was at 3:00 AM and already at 4:00 AM we were on our way to Ho Chi Minh Airport. Everybody was very tired, but to our surprise some were still full of energy from the night before. Our flight was leaving at 7:05 AM so we had some time to sleep at the airport. After almost 3 hours of flight we made a “quick” (almost 1 hour) stop in Shenzhen, which resulted to be quite funny by the fact that we were asked to abandon the aircraft with all our belongings in order to pass security, while they were disinfecting the airplane. Apparently this is very common in China when a flight arrives from southern Asia. The Chinese tend to disinfect aircrafts arriving from these regions to prevent any germs and virus from entering the country. Afterwards we had another 3 hours flight until Beijing. When we arrived all noticed the drastic climate change, it was freezing cold! However, it was impressive to see parts of rivers frozen by the cold weather.

Chinese New Year

We were transferred to the Prime Hotel. The hotel was located in the center of Bejing, very near from the Wang Fu Jian district, Bejing’s most famous shopping street. After we checked-in into the hotel, everybody was free to plan their late afternoon. Some stayed sleeping, some went to shop in the center and others to explore and taste some odd delicacies at the special food street, as scorpions, maggots or snakes etc. Others passed their time bargaining for souvenirs at the Chinese market, which was also located in the Wang Fu Jian Street.

Christine Kolp, Corinne Bayer and Eléonore Ost

Day 12 – Chau Doc to Saigon & New Year

Day 12 started with a busride back to Saigon and the students had the rest of the day off. Since we had been in this hotel before, we all felt like coming back home. Some days before, many students had ordered a tailor to come to the hotel. By now on day 12, the suits, shirts & ties were delivered – some were ok, some were not.

The highlight of the day clearly was the new year spectacle.The

streets were jammed. Music at every corner, wild dragon dances and beautifully decorated trees let us feel the magic of Ho Chi Minh City. The park near us was packed with flowers, orange bushes and bonsai trees (a bit like their version of our christmas tree custom), the main street was also filled with flowers, lanterns and sculptures of all different sizes and colours, and there was a general party atmosphere.

The wonderful firework concluded the night and increased our excitement for the following adventures in Beijing.

Day 9: VW and Suzhou Industrial Park

After a delay due to the non acceptance of international credit cards in the hotel check out in the JinJiang Hotel we finally arrived at Shanghai Automotives Volkswagen (SVW) by bus. We were impressed by the sheer size of the plant. The tour of the company was very well organized and structured and started by a video presentation which explained the history of SVW. Unfortunately the whole visit was not very personal as the Secretary left the room. Continue reading

Day 4: Summer Palace and trip to Handan

Still having the great impressions of the great wall in mind, we had to pack and to check out from the hotel because later that day we had to catch the train to Handan. After loading the baggage into our bus we didn’t leave Beijing before visiting the awesome Summer Palace. The weather was very nice that day, so Petrus was with us. Continue reading

Day 1: Welcome to Beijing

Welcome to China. The official start of our three weeks China field trip with Prof. René Rüttimann was the Beijing duck dinner in a Beijing restaurant nearby our hotel, the Beijing Rich Hotel. This meal is the most famous dish for Beijing and therefore, a wonderful welcome dinner. Some of the 34 Bachelor Business as well as Business Law students arrived later as expected and therefore, the program had to be flexible. At least all students arrived safe in China. Continue reading

First day in Guangzhou

Very early in the morning, 7 am to be exact, we met each other in the lobby of the Lido hotel in Guangzhou. Topic number one was our first impression of the city and the hotel. The tenor was not very positive at first. At the arrival on the previous day at around 00:25 all the streets were empty and the city looked like a ghost town in a certain way. Our hotel did not really change the opinion.

At 9 am we arrived at Lonza and were introduced to several managers of Lonza by Mr Lim, the general manager. Lonza is one of the worlds leading suppliers to the pharmaceutical, healthcare and life science industries. Lonza is the global leader in the production and support of active pharmaceutical ingredients both chemically as well as biotechnologically. Mr Lim gave us a brief introduction of the company. Lonza was founded in 1897, as Lonza AG Electricity works in Gampel, Valais (Switzerland). The joint venture in Guangzhou was signed by Lonza in 1996 to build up a plant to satisfy the regional market needs in China. Further he gave us a short impression of China and the business of the company in China. After asking a few questions we enjoyed a coffee break with dragon eggs and litchi’s followed by a tour through the facilities. Generally the machines offer the same standard and quality as the ones in Switzerland because they used exactly the same technology. They, however, did not think of the temperature differences between Switzerland and South China. This made the management of the machines more difficult.We also gained an insight in the monitoring-system of the facilities which has the same security standards as in Switzerland.

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