6 Of The Newest, Hottest Beachside Resorts To Stay At In Asia
Hyatt Koh Samui, Thailand
Where: Sitting at the intersection of lush tropical rainforests and expansive blue seas, the Hyatt Regency Koh Samui offers a private sanctuary in the heart of North Chaweng, Koh Samui.
The Low-down: The 140-key resort is nestled amid 600 protected Yang Na and coconut trees, and has been designed thoughtfully to incorporate elements of nature. The horse-shoe shaped layout of the hotel ensures that each room faces the sea from its floor-to-ceiling French windows, making for a splendid way to wake up every morning. The resort offers a number of cuisines to satiate different taste buds, from Yangna Cuisine’s Thai-friendly bites to Sesun Grill Beach & Bar’s Mediterranean fare. If nothing catches your fancy, fret not – the hotel is conveniently located in Chaweng, which is known for its wide array of restaurants and bars.
What We Love: The resort has been cleverly designed to be both a couple’s retreat and a family-friendly destination. In fact, there are four free-form pools in the centre of the horseshoe design that cascade towards the shoreline. The children’s pool is adjacent to the topmost one, replete with a slide. There is also a dedicated Camp Hyatt space for children, where four different zones, including Arts and Crafts, Fun and Active, Learning and Technology, and Resting, cater to kids up to the age of 12. The space also adjoins a playground and pool, ensuring that your little ones are kept entertained at all times. Activities such as kayaking and snorkelling are available for adventurous families.
HW Recommends: If you prefer more privacy, the thatched roof villas come with their own plunge pool for kids to enjoy.
Regent Phu Quoc, Vietnam
Where: Located at the pristine beach destination of Phu Quoc, this marks the first Regent beach resort in South-east Asia. Dubbed the Emerald Island, Phu Quoc is one of the 22 islands that are part of the Kien Giang Biosphere Reserve, which has been named a World Biosphere Reserve by Unesco.
The Low-down: White sands, turquoise seas, and spectacular and lush gardens are balms to the nature lover’s soul, but what sets Regent Phu Quoc apart is that the hotel has really outdone itself with the design experience that it offers. The group enlisted the expertise of Blink Design Group – which is behind hotels such as the Raffles Maldives Meradhoo Resort and Four Seasons Jimbaran Bay – to curate an experience that taps on the tropical surroundings, while paying homage to the Vietnamese crafts indigenous to the region. The resort has 176 suites and 126 villas that each overlook the ocean.
What We Love: While privacy and ample rest are guaranteed, Regent Phu Quoc also offers a wellness programme to match. The hotel focuses on “mindful self-care”, and has created three pillars to cater to different travellers: high touch, high frequency and high energy. Apart from a comprehensive spa menu, the resort also offers the services of a Holistic Wellness Coach, who can curate a tailored programme for different needs. Activities include the usual yoga and fitness routines, but what we’re most intrigued by are the interesting mindfulness activities, such as acoustic, vibrational and hot sand therapy, as well as crystal quartz bowl meditation.
HW Recommends: While there are six dining venues at the resort, spanning the likes of French-Japanese cuisine to Asian comforts, we recommend one (or four) gin cocktails at Fu Bar for the best view of the sunset.
Tilar Siro, Andaman Islands, India
Where: The Andamans form an archipelago situated in the Bay of Bengal, home to 572 islands. The largest of these is Havelock Island, an eco-tourist attraction known for its pristine seas and water activities. Tilar Siro is the latest resort on the island, built to protect the biodiversity and give travellers the best that the Indian islands have to offer.
The Low-down: CGH Earth, the parent company behind Tilar Siro, is an Indian hospitality group that has curated some of the most beautiful nature-inspired resorts and retreats across South India. This is its latest offering, and it is in line with the group’s ethos of caring for the environment and the communities that surround its hotels. Here, 25 rooms are interspersed within lush foliage on this two-and-a-half acre property. There are two restaurants on the property, including the Marakele Restaurant, which offers both international and Indian cuisines. If you’re looking for variety, the surrounding area is filled with culinary gems.
What We Love: The topography of Havelock Island makes it a special destination – you’re ensconced within lush rainforests, with a foot in the Indian Ocean. Tilar Siro offers a comprehensive list of nature activities, including scuba diving, snorkelling, fishing, bird watching, trekking and intertidal walks. You can also receive your divers’ certificate by Lacadives right at the resort; you will first learn the ropes at the resort’s pool, then hit the great ocean the following day. Lucky divers might get to spot clams, parrot fish, clown fish, rays and more, making for a colourful experience.
HW Recommends: Opt for the bird-watching tours, where you can spot up to 242 different varieties of birds.
V Villas Phuket
For a romantic sojourn: The intimate V Villas Phuket sits on the hilltop enclave of Ao Yon Bay, with only 19 villas available in one-, three- or four-bedrooms configurations. From its vantage point, your eyes can skim the horizon and imbibe the placid waters of the Andaman Sea. The boutique hotel has been commended for its unparalleled service, with a 24-hour butler service should you decide to indulge.
Hilton Maldives Amingiri Resort & Spa
For families with teenagers: The number of new hotels in Maldives has exploded in recent years, but the one that we’re most looking forward to is the Hilton Maldives Amingiri, which will open its doors in September this year. It’s a 20-minute speedboat ride away from the main city, Male, with 109 villas, each with its own private pool. Early reports say that this will be a family-friendly resort, with a kid’s club as well as a teen’s rooftop area and bar.
For activity seekers: Like every other Andaz hotel around the world, the recently opened property in Bali is an exercise in design excellence. It is located in Sanur, which might not receive the same love as Ubud or Seminyak, but still has plenty of charm. Andaz was designed to replicate a typical Balinese village — a must-see is the Village Square, which offers a host of programmes catered to travellers of all stripes.