Brett Melzer & Khin Omar Win

It was a chance meeting in July 1997 in Yangon which brought Brett Melzer and Khin Omar Win together. Born in Yangon and raised in the UK, Omar with a degree in Development Studies and Geography at the University of Wales, had returned to her homeland to follow her passion in travel and development. Brett, an Australian citizen, had graduated from the London School of Economics and had just arrived in Myanmar to seek opportunities in tourism.

During the infancy of Myanmar’s tourism industry, they established together the first commercial hot air balloon operation in South East Asia - Balloons over Bagan. Over the past 14 years Balloons over Bagan has grown from a single small balloon operation with 8 crew, to a 10 balloon operation employing over 100 local staff and 16 foreign pilots and technicians. Further expansion is planned in the immediate future.

Following the growth of Balloons over Bagan, Brett and Omar pioneered the first white water rafting expeditions on the headwaters of the Ayeryarwady River, which was the precursor to developing a luxury wilderness lodge - the award winning Malikha Lodge, which became, the country’s first Conde Nast Hot list property.

Following on from this, since 2009, Omar and Brett have overseen the company's own Myanmar project management team in the construction of their second hotel project Gangtey Goenpa Lodge in Bhutan, which opened in November 2013.

Award winning Gangtey (Goenpa) Lodge Bhutan, winner of Travel and Leisure's Design Award 2014 and in Conde Nast's Hot List of Best New Hotels for 2014.







Bart D' Hooge & Mark Simmons

Our Chief Pilots Bart D'Hooge and Mark Simmons bring a decade of experience in management and flying over Bagan. When not flying for Balloons over Bagan Bart has flown in Kenya, Namibia and throughout Europe, while Mark has spent years running one of Virgin Balloons largest UK Franchises out of Bath.

Cary Crawley

Cary Crawley is best known for his start up experience, In addition to being an Airworthiness Inspector and flight check Examiner, Cary has extensive global experience in rigorous crew and new pilot training in some of the worlds most challenging environments.

Andy Davey

Andy Davey has years of experience in the field and the factory in taking apart and re assembling balloons. His tireless work behind the scenes as part of our approved maintenance organisation ensures that our balloons are checked and maintained in strict compliance with the aviation law in Myanmar.

Our Pilots

All our UK commercial pilots have a wealth of experience flying in the UK Europe and America, and of course Bagan!. Many of our pilots come back to Bagan year after year, which allows us to maintain our highest possible attention to safety and provide our clients with a professional and beautiful experience. Each year new pilots are introduced to the line up as we continue to expand our services. All our pilots are selected on the basis of their extensive flying experience and clean safety records.

Our Team

Above all it is our dedicated and professional team on the ground in Bagan and Yangon that makes Balloons over Bagan tick so smoothly. Many of our crew managers and their assistants have been with us since our very first flights more than a decade ago. As we have expanded, opportunities for advancement into administration and more senior management have allowed our most able crew to move on and upwards. In Yangon, our Reservations and operation team has grown from one assistant to a team of ten, working tirelessly and often behind the scenes.

Brett Melzer & Khin Omar Win

It was a chance meeting in July 1997 in Yangon which brought Brett Melzer and Khin Omar Win together. Born in Yangon and raised in the UK, Omar with a degree in Development Studies and Geography at the University of Wales, had returned to her homeland to follow her passion in travel and development. Brett, an Australian citizen, had graduated from the London School of Economics and had just arrived in Myanmar to seek opportunities in tourism.

During the infancy of Myanmar’s tourism industry, they established together the first commercial hot air balloon operation in South East Asia - Balloons over Bagan. Over the past 14 years Balloons over Bagan has grown from a single small balloon operation with 8 crew, to a 10 balloon operation employing over 100 local staff and 16 foreign pilots and technicians. Further expansion is planned in the immediate future.

Following the growth of Balloons over Bagan, Brett and Omar pioneered the first white water rafting expeditions on the headwaters of the Ayeryarwady River, which was the precursor to developing a luxury wilderness lodge - the award winning Malikha Lodge, which became, the country’s first Conde Nast Hot list property.

Following on from this, since 2009, Omar and Brett have overseen the company's own Myanmar project management team in the construction of their second hotel project Gangtey Goenpa Lodge in Bhutan, which opened in November 2013.

Award winning Gangtey (Goenpa) Lodge Bhutan, winner of Travel and Leisure's Design Award 2014 and in Conde Nast's Hot List of Best New Hotels for 2014.







Bart D' Hooge & Mark Simmons

Our Chief Pilots Bart D'Hooge and Mark Simmons bring a decade of experience in management and flying over Bagan. When not flying for Balloons over Bagan Bart has flown in Kenya, Namibia and throughout Europe, while Mark has spent years running one of Virgin Balloons largest UK Franchises out of Bath.

Cary Crawley

Cary Crawley is best known for his start up experience, In addition to being an Airworthiness Inspector and flight check Examiner, Cary has extensive global experience in rigorous crew and new pilot training in some of the worlds most challenging environments.

Andy Davey

Andy Davey has years of experience in the field and the factory in taking apart and re assembling balloons. His tireless work behind the scenes as part of our approved maintenance organisation ensures that our balloons are checked and maintained in strict compliance with the aviation law in Myanmar.

Our Pilots

All our UK commercial pilots have a wealth of experience flying in the UK Europe and America, and of course Bagan!. Many of our pilots come back to Bagan year after year, which allows us to maintain our highest possible attention to safety and provide our clients with a professional and beautiful experience. Each year new pilots are introduced to the line up as we continue to expand our services. All our pilots are selected on the basis of their extensive flying experience and clean safety records.

Our Team

Above all it is our dedicated and professional team on the ground in Bagan and Yangon that makes Balloons over Bagan tick so smoothly. Many of our crew managers and their assistants have been with us since our very first flights more than a decade ago. As we have expanded, opportunities for advancement into administration and more senior management have allowed our most able crew to move on and upwards. In Yangon, our Reservations and operation team has grown from one assistant to a team of ten, working tirelessly and often behind the scenes.