The Hotel: Mandarava Resort & Spa
Combining the amenities of modern accommodations with the charm of a tropical hillside resort, Mandarava Resort & Spa is situated amongst an environment rife with waterfalls and greenery on Karon Beach in the province of Phuket. The resort boasts five pools, each set on a different slope of the property, while guests who prefer to take their dips in the ocean have only to wander 700m to reach the beach. The Mandarava Resort & Spa also offers a range of free activities for its guests to enjoy throughout their stay. These include yoga by the pool every Thursday, towel folding class every Wednesday, and a game and fitness rooms.
A private balcony gives sojourners a perch from which to appreciate the tropical splendour around them and is a perfect spot to relax at the end of the day. The Tropicana superior rooms feature floor-to-ceiling windows, that give an open-air feeling to the elegant decor.
- Bed size/type: Double or twin beds
- Standard occupancy: Two people
- Maximum occupancy: Two adults and one child
- The room features a large balcony, flat-screen TV, mini-fridge, minibar, tea- and coffee-making facilities, and bathroom with walk-in shower and soaking tub.
The Area: Phuket
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.