Beachfront Bliss in Phuket

Mimi ON Dec 28, 2009 AT 10:20 am

The Radisson Plaza Panwa Beach

The Radisson Plaza Panwa Beach

By Tamara Hinson

The Radisson Plaza Resort Phuket Panwa Beach  is a relatively new addition to the tourist mecca of Phuket – opened last year, it’s located on the relatively undeveloped southern tip of the island, although the fact that the resort is still only a short drive from both the airport and the madness of party town Patong means guests really do get the best of both worlds.

After five days soaking up the buzz of Vietnam, my boyfriend and I were desperate for some down time, and from the moment we arrived it was obvious this was exactly what we were in for.

A Junior Suite at the Radisson

A Junior Suite at the Radisson

As someone who normally spends their holidays snowboarding, my mental image of a beach front resort is largely the result of what I’ve seen on TV- think white, sandy beaches fringed with palm trees. After dropping off our bags and walking the short distance from our room to the beach, it became obvious that in this instance, the reality was even better.

It’s immediately clear that the whole place has been designed with meticulous attention to detail. While the resort has an undeniable “wow” factor, the effect is subtle, rather than immediate – beyond the reception area, the manicured grounds slowly drop away towards one of the most beautiful beaches I’ve ever seen.

The sloping grounds cry out to be explored, boasting three large pools all surrounded by luxurious seating, with the central area boasting individual cabanas and a poolside bar. The same attention to detail was evident in the rooms – I saw several during my stay and while each room is unique, all feature gorgeous colour schemes and stunning works of traditional Thai art. The rooms themselves are large and airy – we loved the fact we could take a bath within sight of the beach – but our favourite bit was definitely the balcony with its ample day bed and stunning sea views.

The Talay Spa Walkway

The Talay Spa Walkway

While my boyfriend was keen to sample the cocktail menu at the poolside bar, after five days pounding the streets of Ho Chi Minh City my muscles were crying out for some TLC, so I headed to the hotel’s Talay Spa where I was again immediately seduced by the stunning design. The main reception area is lined by koi-carp filled waterways, while the treatment rooms take the form of individual cabins linked by wooden walkways – all within hearing distance of the waves.

I’d opted for the signature treatment – the Ancient Himalayan Stone Therapy – which claims to help restore well-being with the use of Gui Shi – hot stones blessed by monks. I wasn’t sure what to expect and often find it difficult to relax during massages but the warm stones felt wonderful on my aching muscles. The treatment also incorporated a fabulous full body massage and finished with one of the best – and firmest – head massages I’ve experienced.

Radisson Plaza Resort Phuket Panwa Beach
Rates: Rooms start at £78.00 a night for a deluxe room.
Packages: Guests staying between 11th January and the 15th of April 2010
for two nights can enjoy a third night free of charge.

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