Luxury hotels and resorts in Phuket

By Julie Finnegan

Centara Villas is a favourite on Karon beach

Visions of sparkling turquoise seas, waving palm trees and cool island breezes are what most visitors to Phuket are dreaming of as their plane takes off from home. Phuket has a wealth of tropical pleasures waiting, and the right hotel or resort with attentive staff, excellent food and the best location can make those dreams a reality.

Phuket has many fabulous resorts and hotels, but how do you know that the gorgeous picture on the website doesn’t hide the souvenir shacks huddled next to the main building or the smell from the fish market just down the street? Here is a sampling of some of the best, most intriguing resorts on the island with can’t lose locations.

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Impiana Phuket Cabana Resort & Spa (Patong)
Patong is the top destination for many visitors to Phuket. Known for its anything goes nightlife, jumble of souvenir stands and fabulous stretch of beach, Patong is a kaleidoscope of chaos. This makes the calm, cool Impiana Cabana Resort & Spa a welcome addition to the Patong beach scene. The only hotel set directly on the beach, you can’t beat this location...More details and booking

The hotel’s décor is modern with clean lines and tropical details such as bamboo and exposed wooden beams. Landscaped gardens surround the luxurious bungalows and serene swimming pool, and lead you out to the white sand beach. The Impiana also has some of the best restaurants in Phuket, so you don’t even need to leave the resort for a fine meal. When you want to be in the middle of the action but also want to enjoy some down time, the Impiana is an excellent choice.

Centara Villas Phuket (Karon)
For a jungle retreat with all the conveniences of a luxurious villa, the location and ambience of the Centara Villas in Karon is perfect. Set on the hillside overlooking Karon beach, this is the perfect place to chill out and relax. Fitness buffs will enjoy the natural workout that the hillside location provides, while holidaymakers more devoted to hammocks will love the complimentary beach and resort shuttle...More details and booking

The white sand of Karon beach is a short walk down a coastal trail. Spend your leisure hours on a sunlounger on the sand or at one of the resort’s two refreshing swimming pools. At night, Karon has just enough nightlife to keep you entertained and dining in style, or take a local tuk-tuk to nearby Patong or Kata for more choices.

Cape Panwa Hotel has its own exclusive beach

Indigo Pearl (Nai Yang beach and Sirinath National Marine Park)
Far from the madding crowd, the Indigo Pearl offers a taste of what Phuket was like before international jet-setters discovered it. Just five minutes drive from Phuket International Airport, Indigo Pearl is set on the pristine Nai Yang beach and Sirinath National Marine Park, virtually untouched by the tourism parade...More details and booking

Designed by internationally known architect Bill Bensley, this post-modern hotel is chic and hip, but hasn’t forgotten its tropical location. The gardens and rooms offer artistic surprises everywhere you turn. Relax by the swimming pool or take a long walk on the unspoilt beach.

This hotel is a 40-minute drive to the nightlife of Patong, but if you want a relaxing stay far from the hordes of fellow travellers, you won’t mind that. The award-winning restaurants offer plenty of fabulous dining options. Local restaurants on the beach offer fresh-from-the-sea specialties and home Thai cooking at prices that can’t be beat.

Cape Panwa Hotel
Most visitors don’t seem to have discovered the east coast overlooking spectacular Phang Nga bay. That’s a shame, because Phuket’s east coast has calmer seas, better boating, and great snorkelling and diving. The Cape Panwa Hotel on Phuket’s southeast coast offers fantastic sea views, cultural activities such as Thai cooking classes and batik painting, and even table tennis on the beach.

Tastefully decorated sea view rooms and villas are surrounded by coconut groves and tropical gardens. Private pool villas offer the ultimate in private relaxation. With 10 restaurants and cafes to choose from, there is no shortage of superb dining choices close by. For more choices, Phuket Town is a short drive away, or hop over the hills to Kata and Karon.

Note! To secure a guaranteed room and find the best rates, we suggest you look online at Agoda.com. They seem to be the most competitively priced of the hotels sites.

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