UPDATE (Monday 30/3):
Nikki Beach Resort has still not responded to requests for comment, but has released another statement from its Dubai HQ:
"To elaborate on our last statement, we would like to make it clear that we do not, have no and will never own an elephant.
"The elephant in the photo is from a reputable elephant caretaker who has no affiliation with Nikki Beach.
"With the above said, we understand that this has upset many of our customers and animal advocates around the world, so effective immediately, we will stop granting requests for elephants at Nikki Beach Phuket.
"The Nikki Beach family will never stand for mistreatment of animals."
UPDATE (Sunday 29/3):
TripAdvisor has, within the space of 24 hours, deleted all the reviews on the Nikki Beach's profile regarding the elephants.
There are currently no reviews for the property since 6 March 2015 and its overall rating is very positive.
TripAdvisor has a strict policy around reviews, it says in an email.
"...our site is intended as platform for customers to share their first-hand experiences of the places they visit.
"Therefore, any review which is a second hand account, such as commentary on a current news story, would be in breach of our guidelines."
The guidelines are here.
Not a good week to be the Nikki Beach Resort on the island of Phuket in southern Thailand - or one of the local elephants.
The property - popular with clubbers and those generally not looking for peace and solitude on a trip - has found itself on the receiving end of a tirade of criticism in recent days.
Nikki's social media operators posted a picture titled "Amazing Sunday Brunch" on it's Facebook page, showing guests appearing to be enjoying the pool area of the property.
Nothing wrong with that, of course, except the image also featured a reveller sitting atop a baby elephant, close to the pool's edge.
The picture (inevitably now removed from the Facebook page) triggered a wave of criticism of the property from travellers and conservationists.
(There is a good article here covering the issues involving elephants in Thailand).
Anger across numerous forums seems to be split between blaming the property for bringing an infant elephant on-site and letting a guest ride it for entertainment, to slamming the guests for enjoying such activity. Or both.
Within a day or two of the incident coming to light and the barrage of negative reaction, Nikki released a statement on both on its Twitter profile and on the Facebook page.
The statement has kick-started a new round of anger on its Facebook page (perhaps the only element to the story in which the hotel deserves some credit is that it has not deleted any of the comments).
Nikki has not responded to questions about the incident.
The story has now evolved into a new area after many of the comments urged people to slam the property on its TripAdvisorpage.
Many of the reviews that have been posted on the property's TripAdvisor profile appear to be from angered travellers, rather than actual guests - an issue which is now forcing TripAdvisor's hand to take action.
A TripAdvisor official says it is "investigating the reviews in question".
"Our guidelines state that reviews must relate to a genuine customer experience, and if we find evidence that reviews breach these guidelines we will remove them.
"If owners are concerned about a review, they can report it to us and we will investigate."
There is now a rather interesting debate which could emerge as a result of the Nikki incident.
Should any type of product be exempt from receiving criticism on TripAdvisor over its behaviour when an incident has captured the attention of concerned bystanders?
Or does TripAdvisor have a duty to visitors of the site to allow reviews or content which inform travellers about something that could influence a decision to stay a property, regardless of whether the reviewer stayed at the property or not?
Currently the guidelines would support the hotel, but perhaps a high profile incident such as this could ignite a rethink of the policy.