The Hotel: Diamond Cottage Resort
Pristine shores of the Andaman Sea are just a stroll away from Diamond Cottage Resort. Perched on the hillside of Karon, this hotel boasts Thai-inspired facade and decor as well as easy access to Patong Beach and Phuket Town. Guests who do not wish to venture further afield will have plenty to keep themselves entertained with on site, too - two outdoor swimming pools, fitness room, beauty salon, sauna and a hot tub. Two on-site restaurants take guests on a culinary adventure through international classics and local delicacies, while the bars overflow with various refreshments. Sojourners can take their relaxation a step further with a massage and facial offered at the spa. When it is time to wind down, Groupies retire to their Superior Pool View Room with elegant, sleek interiors and private balcony.
The Hotel: Centra by Centara Coconut Beach Resort Samui
Perched on the secluded Thong Tanote Beach, Centra by Centara Coconut Beach Resort Samui invites travellers to soothe their senses with a four-star retreat. The resort boasts a beachfront pool, access to a pristine beach, and views of Koh Tan and Koh Mutsum, two renowned diving and snorkelling spots. Extra pampering can be enjoyed in the spa. Culinary delights can be savoured in the bars and restaurants on site, while the sleek rooms equipped with air conditioning, en suite facilities and balconies make for comfy relaxation hubs.
Superior Pool View Room
- Bed size/type: Double bed
- Standard occupancy: Two people
- Maximum occupancy: Three people (the third person needs to buy an extra voucher)
- Private bathroom with toiletries; minibar, fridge, tea and coffee provisions, satellite TV, and air conditioning
The Area: Phuket, Thailand
A melting pot of religions, experiences and of course international tourists, Phuket combines everything that can be expected of a tropical island destination and puts it all into overdrive. Idyllic beaches and lush forests are juxtaposed against the hectic energy of Patong, often referred to as the party capital of not just Thailand but the whole of Asia. Patong is the island’s beating heart, a city of frenetic energy and bright lights surrounded by the gracious curve of glittering Patong Beach. Patong Beach is one of Thailand’s most famous where everything from sun lounges to jet skis are available to hire, and locals offer on-the-spot hair braiding and massages.
Just a short hop to the south of this lies the areas of Karon and Kata, famous for their pristine beaches and proximity to all the action of Patong without being in the thick of it. For something quieter and more picturesque, take a long tail boat around the southern headland to Freedom Beach, which is only accessible by water. By night, busy Bangla Road comes to life with bars, restaurants and nightclubs at every turn. The streets are closed to cars from 6pm and throng with people every night of the week. For something different, check out a Las Vegas-style magic show at the Joe Conrad Magic Theatre. During the daytime, explore the spectacular surrounding area with a tour to Phi Phi Island, a scuba-diving day trip or an elephant trek through the jungle.
The Area: Koh Samui, Thailand
From its clear, warm waters to palm tree-lined white sands, Koh Samui is a beach lover’s paradise. Brimming with awe-inspiring scenery along with seafood restaurants, coral reefs, and a cultural oddity or two, the island pulses with pure fun. Whether it’s sampling the signature spicy cuisine of South Thailand or snapping a photo with the Big Buddha, travellers from all walks of life find an experience to write home about in this hub of both serenity and excitement.
Koh Samui is really all about the beaches, whether it’s the popular tourist hotspots of Chaweng or Lamai or one of the many deserted little bays. Splash about in the clean waters, relax on the sand, or try the myriad water sports available from kayaking to jet skiing or snorkelling. More serious enthusiasts sign up for a diving charter, exploring the reefs around the smaller islands, and meeting the array of unique marine life.
Holidaymakers eager to experience new nature sites journey to a series of waterfalls in jungle surrounds, while others meet new friends at the tiger zoo or butterfly garden. For something a bit different, measure up against the Big Buddha in the north or see a mummified monk at Wat Khunaram. Days are finished in style with a meal at one of the beachside restaurants, where tables can be set up on the sand for a romantic experience.