We have been coming to the Banyan Tree in Phuket for 15 years and what keeps us coming back? The property and the service! In Phuket one is spoiled with choice in the luxury hotel market. But the Banyan Tree is the best of all, whether you are travelling with children (as we have on many occasions in the past) or as a romantic getaway for two. The Banyan Tree is located within the Laguna Resort area which means one has the use of the facilities at the other hotels as well. In addition to the wonderful 4 restaurants at the Banyan Tree, you can eat at any of the other restaurants within the complex, including the phenomenal Thai restaurant at the Dusit Thani. We have played golf at the Laguna Golf Club (that shares the main entrance with the Banyan Tree), gotten certified as a family for scuba diving, using the Sheraton Hotel's dive shop and pool. When the children were very little, we also used the Sheraton pools and play area, as the Banyan Tree does not have those options for really little ones. The beach is one of the longest in Phuket -- some 4 miles long, with gorgeous sand and shade in the morning for good morning jogs and of course the perfect spot to watch the sun go down in the evening. Along the beach front there are also wonderful casual and inexpensive restaurants serving Thai food. Our favorite is Lotus -- a leisurely walk down the beach from the hotel. There is also a really cool bar, called Reggae which is our favorite for watching the sun go down over a cold drink in the evening. (They also now rent stand up paddle boards.) We have stayed in every type of villa the resort offers. With children, our favorite is the deluxe two bedroom pool villas, which is a walled complex with a long pool and jacuzzi. I would NOT stay here with toddlers who don't swim as the bedroom and living room open straight on to the pool area. These villas afford absolute privacy. The most attractive style of villa are the double pool villas, with floating bedrooms surrounded by lily ponds. But these are fitted out with slick marble which makes using the pools tricky with kids and for honeymooners, the pool areas face directly onto internal lagoons, so you can see what all your neighbors are doing around their pools (and vice versa #@!). Once we messed up our reservations at Easter and spent one night spread out among 3 of the smallest villas and they were very lovely and private with mature tropical plantings and a small outdoor jacuzzi. This past weekend we stayed for the first time in the Spa Pool Sanctuary villas. These have a private entrance which made check in an easy process but we sort of missed arriving in the stunning main lobby of the hotel! There are 14 villas in this section, 10 that face the lagoon (and have the same privacy issues at the double pool villas) and 4 that have a water fountain wall at the end of the pool area. We chose the one with the privacy and the lovely sound of running water. The pool was long with a heated jacuzzi tub that spilled into the pool. In addition there were two built in lounges in the pool that had their own bubbling units. At the end of the pool next to the wall fountain was a sala for massages. The bedroom was a floating room surrounded by lily pads and there was a steam room as well as an outdoor bathtub in the master bath. As part of the "sanctuary", we were treated to a romantic surprise at turn down service every night. The first night we arrived to find that the sheets on the bed had been changed to soft silk sheets, there was a bottle of sparkling pomegranite juice in an ice bucket with candles lit all around the room and flowers strewn across the bed. The second night there were flowers and candles in the bathroom and a whole spa treatment of scrubs presented in the steam shower. The last night we found chocolates, a bottle of red wine, body oil and the outdoor bathtub full of floating orchids. Not to mention lots and lots of flickering candles. WOW! It was lovely. We had a spa treatment every day. Our favorite treatment rooms are the outdoor salas that are villas surrounded by water in a private garden area. To have a lovely massage with the sound of running water and birdsong is heaven on earth. Remember to request an outdoor treatment room when making the booking! This time the hotel was only 70% occupied so we had no trouble playing it by ear in terms of tee times, spa treatments and restaurant bookings. If you go during a busier time of year, be sure to book a dinner every night, RESERVE BIKES for your stay! (they never have enough which is just stupid and annoying), get tee times and spa appointments. You can always change things around when you see what you like, but at least you won't be frustrated. We came home yesterday well rested and so very pleased to have had such a lovely time again. There are a few things I would change to make this the totally perfect experience: a better mattress on the beds (the Thai style hard mattress is a sleep killer), our villa needed a face lift -- new cushions outside and tiles repaired, and really there need to be more bicycles in better condition (my husband's lacked effective brakes). But these were minor imperfections in an otherwise perfect vacation experience. We will be back!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Banyan Tree Phuket, Banyan Tree Spa Sanctuary and DoublePool Villas by Banyan Tree each deliver a unique experience in a tranquil setting. Located at Bang Tao Bay on the northwest coast of Phuket Island in Thailand, a 20-minute drive from Phuket International Airport. Banyan Tree Phuket Resorts is part of Laguna Phuket, Asia's first integrated resort, and is also the first Banyan Tree resort to be conceptualised and built, setting the benchmark for future properties. This flagship resort offers 173 luxuriously appointed villas surrounded by lush tropical gardens and Asian watercourts. All villas feature a king-sized bed, bathtub and private pool in a landscaped garden. Complimentary minibar except alcoholic drinks with daily refill for all villa categories. The perfect haven to spend time with loved ones, Banyan Tree Phuket Resorts caters for romance, with its private pool villa, fragrant gardens and saltwater lagoons. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Banyan Tree Phuket Hotel Thalang
- Banyan Tree Phuket Cherngtalay
- Banyan Tree Phuket Thailand