Where to stay in Thailand
Anantara Bangkok Riverside Resort, Thailand
Anantara Bangkok Riverside is a welcome addition to the Bangkok hotel scene and is a resort style luxury hotel located right on the Chao Praya River. One of its best features is the setting in 11 acres of peaceful, verdant tropical gardens making it an oasis from the bright lights of the buzzing Thai capital. There is a large swimming pool on site and the rooms are designed in a beautiful Thai style.
Banyan Tree Bangkok, Thailand
The Banyan Tree Bangkok is one of the tallest and most stylish luxury hotels in the Thai capital, with fabulous panoramic views over the city. It combines the old world charm of Thailand with the elegant and understated sophistication synonymous with the Banyan Tree brand.
The Peninsula Bangkok, Thailand
One of Bangkok’s best known hotels, The Peninsula's reputation for the finest quality and excellent service is consistently well-deserved. Located on the banks of the Chao Praya river, it enjoys uninterrupted views across the lifeline of this busy city.
Siam Siam Design Hotel, Bangkok
A very cool and hip design hotel with an excellent location on the doorstep of the shopping, restaurants and bars of vibrant Siam Square and within walking distance of Jim Thompson’s house and nearby MBK shopping and entertainment complex. Siam @ Siam is a great option for those looking to be in the heart of it all.
Capella Bangkok, Thailand
Capella Bangkok is located right next to the Chao Phraya River, all 101 rooms, suites and villas have unobstructed views of the river. Combine tranquility with exceptional service and Capella makes the ideal retreat after a busy day exploring exciting Bangkok.
Anantara Golden Triangle, Thailand
The design of the resort is very traditional Thai and all rooms have private balconies overlooking the Golden Triangle. Using the Anantara Golden Triangle as your base gives the perfect opportunity to explore. The location is spectacular with superb views and its own Elephant camp. Have a mahout teach you how to handle the enormous beasts, go on a trek by the river or through the forest, rice fields and bamboo groves, join in with elephant bathing time or discover tips for surviving in the forest from the mahouts. The camp is designed like a traditional mahout hill village and sits right beside the resort.
Four Seasons Resort Chiang Mai, Thailand
Located 30 minutes from Thailand’s cultural capital, Chiang Mai in the Mae Rim Valley, the location of the Four Seasons is perfect for a rural Thai escape with access to all the highlights of northern Thailand. The resort is built around working rice terraces with breath-taking views across the paddies and mountains in the distance. Besides relaxing in the tranquil setting of the resort there is plenty of options to experience Thai lifestyle, from guided gardens tours, join the farmers and learn how rice is planted or join a birdwatching tour around the verdant grounds, borrow one of the resort mountain bikes and explore the local area or join a cookery class. Beyond the resort visit one of the nearby villages for a sample of local hill tribe life or visit on of the elephant parks and spend the day discovering these magnificent creatures.
Tamarind Village, Chiang Mai
Located in the heart of Chiang Mai, Thailand’s cultural hub, Tamarind Village is a charming and unique Lanna-style boutique property. Found at the end of an inviting bamboo lined driveway just off one of the main streets that runs through the walled old town of the city, the resort is typically northern Thai architecturally set around a series of garden courtyards. One of the courtyards is home to a 200-year-old Tamarind tree from which the resort takes its name.
137 Pillars House, Chiang Mai
The charming boutique 137 Pillars House was originally an old colonial house, built in the early 1800’s, designated to foreigners by the Siam Government, and it was built around the construction of 137 pillars, hence the name. Converted into a hotel in 2012 the design is spectacular, fully capturing the elegance of by-gone days, but with a contemporary finish. Located close the banks of the Mai Ping river it is just a short taxi ride from the centre of Chiang Mai and the lively night markets.
Anantara Chiang Mai Resort, Thailand
Simply one of Northern Thailand’s most elegant, stylish and luxurious hotels, the Anantara Chiang Mai combines the facilities of a luxury hotel with a highly convenient location, just a five minute walk from the famous Night Market. The site itself was home to the former British Consulate and thus enjoys one of Chiang Mai’s prime locations, on the banks of the Mae Ping River. The main Consulate building dates back to the 1920’s and has been integrated into the hotel – it is now the location of the stylish restaurant, whose leather chairs and colonial style afternoon tea are designed to recreate the British club feel.
Lanjia Lodge, Chiang Rai
A stay at Lanjia Lodge offers a unique opportunity to live amongst the Hmong Villages in a community based lodge in Chiang Rao Province in northern Thailand. Offering dramatic views of the Mekong Valley and Laos, the lodge is building in complete harmony with the lush green environment as well as the Hmong and Lahu villages in which it is located.
Raya Heritage Chiang Mai, Thailand
This new sanctuary located on the banks of Chiang Mai’s River Ping has been designed with northern Thailand’s Lanna heritage in mind. Those seeking a serene escape on the outskirts of the bustling ancient city should look no further, as the tranquil atmosphere of Raya Heritage provides a balance of Thai charm with luxurious contemporary touches. This is a gorgeous base from which to explore the enticing sights, sounds and smells of Chiang Mai and the peace of the verdant Thai countryside.
SO Sofitel Hua Hin, Thailand
The stylish SO Sofitel is located in Cha Am, a low key seaside town close to the popular resort of Hua Hin, just a two hour drive south of Bangkok. The hotel is set on a long stretch of beach overlooking the Gulf of Thailand and offers an easily accessible hideaway for those not wanting to fly to Thailand's islands. It is ideal for a relaxing, pampering sojourn at the beginning or the end of an itinerary to Thailand or Indochina.
Just a two hour drive and short ferry ride from Bangkok, Paradee is located on the island of Koh Samed, an ideal choice for those who prefer not to take an additional flight down to one of the islands in the south of Thailand. You really don’t need to fly to find paradise - Koh Samed is just as beautiful, if not more, as it is much less developed but still boasts idyllic beaches and jungle clad national parks. Guests can enjoy the beautiful setting amongst lush, tropical jungle and white sand beaches, relaxing or taking advantage of the excellent snorkelling and diving in the area.
Soneva Kiri, Thailand
Seen from above Soneva Kiri appears as a scattering of white canopies punctuating the emerald green of the jungle, curving around a gentle bay filled with impossibly blue water and gleaming white sand. Reached by private plane from Bangkok, Koh Kood is the Thailand of old, peaceful beaches, untamed jungle and smiling fishermen peacefully going about their business. The 24 spacious pool villas – in this case the phrase ‘plus size’ is entirely apt – have a beach or hillside location. All have half-moon infinity pools, personal buggies for scooting around the resort, and the unobtrusive service of a personal Mr or Ms Friday to attend to your every whim and desire.
Anantara Rasananda, Koh Phangan
Arrival is via a 40 minute speedboat dash from Koh Samui and your boat arrives on the beach, so be prepared to ditch the shoes and dabble your toes – this is definitely barefoot territory. A stunning, white sand beach fringed by the turquoise waters of the Gulf of Thailand greets your arrival, Koh Phangan remains that unspoilt, rustic and untouched island from your travelling days; this is the real Thailand, how Thailand used to be. Contemporary style pool villas blend into the landscape with Pool Suites located on the second floor, offering huge terraces and outdoor plunge pools.
SALA Samui, Koh Samui
SALA Samui is a great option for honeymooners and couples looking for a romantic, luxurious and peaceful retreat. It is located on a quiet stretch of beach in Choeng Mon, a scenic and low key area in the north-east of Koh Samui, just 15 minutes from the airport. This part of the island offers an ideal escape with easy access to the bars and nightlife of Chaweng Beach or the restaurants at the quaint Bo Phut Fishermans Village, both just a short taxi ride away.
Six Senses Samui, Koh Samui
It feels like a million miles from anywhere, peaceful and secluded with some of the most jaw-dropping views over the Gulf of Siam we have seen. In true Six Senses style it has a real feel of rustic luxe but there is absolutely no compromise on the luxury element, the blend is just perfect. 66 wooden-clad villas are scattered across a gentle hillside and there is a wonderfully relaxed ambience about the place. Each villa is perfectly in tune with its surroundings, utterly private and all with outstanding views.
Anantara Lawana Resort & Spa, Koh Samui
Anantara Lawana nestles at the very northern end of Chaweng beach on Koh Samui - far enough from the hustle and bustle of this busy area to be a tranquil oasis, yet close enough for guests to take advantage of the many shops, restaurants and bars Chaweng has to offer. The unique architecture is inspired by the island's original Chinese merchant settlers which blends with a beautiful tropical setting that could only be Thai. A unique feature of the resort is Sky Hug - Anantara Lawana's signature dining experience, set in the tree tops in a private sala that overlooks the sea. Other dining options include Ocean Kiss and private in-villa dining. And of course the Infinity edged pool and Anantara Spa is not to be missed!
Banyan Tree Samui, Koh Samui
There are many beachfront, luxury resorts on Koh Samui, and indeed in Thailand, but every now and again you come across one which seems to epitomise everything you would expect from a fabulous retreat in the ‘land of smiles’. The Banyan Tree Samui is just such a place. Set into the hillside, the resort commands exceptional views over the sapphire waters of Lamai Bay which lap the pristine white sands of the beach below.
Melati Beach Resort & Spa, Koh Samui
Melati Beach Resort is another Turquoise favourite, perfect for both couples and families it’s certainly one of Koh Samui’s hidden gems. It enjoys a secluded beachfront setting at unspoiled Thongson Bay on Samui’s northern-most tip, just 10 minutes from the airport and within easy reach of the island’s lively Chaweng Beach area as well as the renowned Bo Phut Fisherman’s Village, with its many shops and restaurants.
Santiburi Beach Resort, Koh Samui
Santiburi Beach Resort, a member of the exclusive ‘Leading Hotels of the World’ group, is located on a 300 metre private swimming beach in Mae Nam Bay on the north coast of Koh Samui, just 15 minutes from Samui Airport and 5 minutes from Bo Phut fisherman’s village with its many shops, restaurants and bars. The resort offers 71 luxurious Suites and Villas set within 23 acres of exotic palm filled gardens and is a perfect choice for families seeking a hotel with plenty of activities for children.
Zazen Boutique Resort & Spa, Koh Samui
If you crave the intimacy and charm of a boutique family-run establishment then look no further than the truly enchanting Zazen. With a peaceful location on Bo Phut Beach there are just 26 rooms to choose from. The design echoes a stylish Thai home with warm wood and cool terracotta floors, rich Thai silks and a large veranda. In keeping with the boutique style, the spa here is small, but perfectly formed, with outdoor treatments salas and a free form swimming pool. For adventure seekers, the location of Zazen means you are perfectly placed to discover the beautiful island of Samui.
Pimalai Resort & Spa, Koh Lanta
Koh Lanta is a very peaceful place, a natural island with a quiet charm that is thankfully still largely unspoiled with beautiful beaches and soaring emerald green mountains but it is more than this that makes Pimalai so extraordinary. We think it’s the luxury of somewhere very special that manages to be very unique and exclusive but without any of the fuss. Overlooking beautiful Kantiang Bay and surrounded by native forest, this well laid out and low-rise resort sits absolute beachfront and then clambers into the hills behind. Access to the resort is from the mainland jetty by launch – all adding to the sense of exclusivity.
If your expectation of a beach escape in Thailand involves giant sun-kissed limestone karsts rising majestically from the ocean and white sand beaches encircling jungle clad hillsides, then Rayavadee might just be the place for you. Although theoretically located on the mainland, the resort is dotted across a beautiful peninsula and only accessible by boat. This is a truly breathtaking property in a dazzling location with a wonderful sense of traditional Thailand.
Elephant Hills Tented Jungle Camp, Thailand
Inspired by the African safari camps Elephant Hills is the first luxury camp of its kind in Thailand. Set in two locations – the original camp has 30 tents in a stunning position with expansive views of the jungle and river below, while the Rainforest Camp offers 10 tents set on a floating platform on Cheow Larn Lake – for the ultimate experience we recommend a night in each.
Six Senses Yao Noi, Thailand
There is a distinct feel of the ‘Jungle Book’ meets ‘Castaway’ about Six Senses Yao Noi and if Mowgli was all grown-up, and looking for a luxurious, sensuous retreat, this is most definitely where he would come! Resting in the ocean halfway between Phuket and Krabi, amongst the iconic limestone shards of Phang Nga Bay, getting there is all part of the experience. It’s just a 45 minute boat transfer from Phuket or 20 minutes by speedboat from Krabi. The views are quite simply ‘larger than life’ and it is one of the most idyllic retreats we have ever found.
The Sarojin, Khao Lak
This truly elegant, Thai-style resort is a secluded tropical retreat, offering undisturbed privacy and a very warm welcome on a pristine swathe of beach. Managing to offer the best of both worlds, this secluded resort is perfect for a relaxing, tropical beach escape but also incredibly well located for exploration if you prefer to be just a little more active. The Sarojin has a team of ‘Imagineerers’ armed with all manner of unique ideas to create memorable moments just for you. Want to take to the high seas aboard the Lady Sarojin to a world-class dive spot, or trek through the rainforest on foot or astride a majestic elephant to find chilled Champagne waiting for you at the end?
The Surin, Phuket
Overlooking one of the best beaches in Thailand, with a backdrop of rolling jungle-clad hills, this charming resort is as distinctive in its setting as it is in its design. The tranquil and secluded white sand of Pansea Bay, washed by the clear warm turquoise water of the Andaman Sea, is the stuff of dreams… whilst the architecturally designed cottages and suites of The Surin are some of the most sought after on Phuket!
Anantara Mai Khao Phuket Villas, Thailand
With a secluded location in the north of the island we love the very tranquil and utterly romantic aura that pervades the Anantara Phuket Villas – if you are looking to avoid Phuket’s sometimes loud, brash, busy persona then this may just be the place for you.
The Racha, Phuket
The Racha offers exclusive luxury on its tiny island paradise. Nestled in a picture perfect bay with a beautiful white sand beach and clear turquoise water – its location really is quite exquisite. The island of Koh Racha is just 40 minutes by speedboat from the marina on Phuket. The resort is very contemporary in design and the manicured grounds are filled with frangipani trees and the simple elegance of this white flower reflects the hotel’s own refined chic. Rooms are white, airy and spacious, so very modern yet, with an Asian feel.
The Shore, Phuket
Set into the hillside, the Pool Villas are tropical hideaways with cool, cream colours, spacious living areas, private pool and deck facing the emerald green hills. These also come as a two bedroom option – but our favourites have to be the Sea View Pool Villas with private, infinity-edge pool and sun deck, sunken lounge and fabulous bathrooms all with that panoramic view that will make you reach for the camera time and time again.
Rosewood Phuket, Thailand
Tucked away on a beautiful beach in Emerald Bay, on the south-west coast of Phuket, Rosewood Phuket is a secluded hideaway and yet is only ten minutes from the busy bars and restaurants of Patong Bay. Ideal for those who like to get out and explore and want to retreat to the privacy of their luxury resort at the end of the night. The freeform pool is the heart and soul of the resort, located right behind the beach, beneath the swaying palms - choose from lap, activity and children’s pool sections. Kids will love it here. With spacious and interconnecting rooms, plus two-bedroom options there is space for everyone.
Koyao Island Resort
If you are seeking a peaceful and beautiful location with authentic Thai hospitality then Kohyao Island Resort is just the place. This boutique retreat is located on the remote island of Yao Noi, a lovely little island, sandwiched between Krabi and Phuket in the magnificent Phang Nga Bay.
Sailing in Phang Nga Bay, Thailand
The incredible Islands of Phang Nga Bay are an unmissable part of any holiday to Thailand. However, you do have to share them with everyone else. On a live-aboard Dream Yacht Charter trip, you can spend either 3 or 7 nights sailing amongst the beautiful islands,
SALA Phuket, Thailand
SALA Phuket Resort and Spa is a fantastic choice for honeymooners and those simply looking for a luxurious retreat to indulge in some serious pampering and well-earned R&R. Set on Phuket’s pristine Mai Khao beach on the north-west coast, SALA enjoys one of the island's best locations thanks to its proximity to many of Phuket’s attractions. It is just a short drive from the airport and many of the island marinas which are used to access Phang Nga Bay’s beautiful limestone islands, not to mention an easy drive north to Khao Lak or south to enjoy the bright lights and nightlife of the islands famous southern beaches.
The Slate, Phuket
Located on the island of Phuket, just ten minutes from the airport, the award-winning The Slate (formerly Indigo Pearl) is just minutes from the white sands of Nai Yang Beach. Designed by Bensley Design Studios and inspired by Phuket’s tin mining past, Indigo Pearl’s architecture and décor combines mining themes with Thai chic giving the resort a truly unique, quirky and fun feel.
Hintok River Camp, Kanchanaburi
Nestled on a ridgetop overlooking the world famous River Kwai in Thailand’s Kanchanaburi province, this unique tented camp is located at Hellfire Pass on the same site as the World War 2 Japanese military-based camp. It is also close to the Hellfire Pass Museum where you can read the true story of the Thai-Burma Railway and its construction by allied prisoners of war.
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