I always wanted to drive from Phuket to Chiang Rai and see the countryside of Thailand. Around Songkran (Thai new year) 2008, I finally took time out, rented Thai’s national car (Honda Jazz), armed with Michellin Thailand Map and Google Maps on my iPhone and headed north. Google Maps, other than for the purpose of calculating the distance and estimated driving time, was a non-starter because all geographic labels in Thailand were in Thai.
With the exception of Thailand’s experiment with U-turn systems which defy international norms (“U-turn Bridge” flanked on either side by “Frontage Roads”, mix for instant spaghetti of traffic, and U-turn on through-traffic speed lanes, must-culprit of hundreds of accidents yearly), I found Thailand highway driving easy. On the primary and secondary highways, all signs were in English (avoid anything four digits).
I am contributing a series of hotel reviews accompanied with short observations of the cities I visited during this driving trip. My itinerary was:
Phuket >Evason Hua Hin > Conrad Bangkok> Ananda Museum Galley Hotel, Sukhothai, Centara Mae Sot> Phu Chai Sai Mountain Resort Chiangrai>Orchid Hibiscus Guesthouse Sukhothai>VN Guesthouse Kanchanaburi>Evason Hua Hin>Phuket .
First, Evason Hua Hin
First of all, Evason Hua Hin is not in Hua Hin but located halfway between Hua Hin and Pranburi. I stayed here twice, both ways up and down highway 4 but struggled to find it both times. If you exit at Hua Hin on Highway 4, it’s 25km drive south (that’s in addition to the 20km to Hua Hin before I discovered that Evanson Hua Hin is not in Hua Hin). If you exit from xxx, chances are you will not find it and resort to returning to Hua Hin only to trace your way back to Pranburi on the local road.
How I booked it
I called up the hotel, told them I live in Thailand, asked for discount for B&B. Amazing how this still works in the new millennium. I paid B3,500 including VAT and Service charge (which adds up to 17.7%).
Rooms and facilities
Once you get here, the resort sprawled across 20 acres of lush gardens and everything in earth tones offer a real hideaway. I always admired the natural reinterpretation of Evason’s (or Six Senses which is their umbrella brand) resort experience. I say “re”-interpretation because today’s typical luxury resort design is so predictable and recycled, the old-world and back-to-basics charm of Evason’s design is in fact refreshing. Sitting by the poolside, their white sunbrellas, lush and thick sun-chair futons, earth-tone concrete pool all seemed so at ease with the resort experience than the uber-chic resorts we come to take for granted.
In its pleantifulness and quality, this is the second best breakfast in Thailand after Sheraton Grande Laguna, Phuket. I only discovered their egg station on my second stay (look for it outdoors toward the lounge around the corner from the pastry station).
A lot of well-heeled ADULTS. Evason must have a super-agent in Germany... Lots of Russians, as always, in their D&G tops and Puma pants (I actually saw a dude with Superman T-shirt with Shell logo shorts today).
Wireless is available only in the common areas, by the pond and the pool. These are the central points which connect the beach, the pool, restaurants and shops etc. I’m sure there’s excuses like unplugged resort experience etc. etc. but not having in-room wireless in a luxury resort today has no excuse.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Evason Hua Hin is approximately 230 kilometres or 140 miles south of Bangkok. An excellent highway provides for a three-hour drive. King Rama VII built a palace there in 1926 and it remains the Thai Royal family Summer Palace to this day. Evason Hua Hin is located in the quiet area of Pranburi, south of Hua Hin Township. Set amongst 8 hectares or 20 acres of gardens, facing the Gulf of Siam, it offers 196 guest accommodations in a garden setting, including 40 private pool villas each measuring 110 square metres. Evason Studios feature an oversized terrace complete with a daybed. Guestrooms offer eco-friendly designs adhering to a renowned responsibility to the environment and the Evason philosophy of Redefining Experiences. Dining options include The Restaurant serving a daily International breakfast buffet, while Kieng Sah restaurant features authentic Thai cuisine. Coast is opened for dinner and serves Mediterranean cuisine with a strong Italian influence. The Bar is located adjacent to the main pool and offers an all day drinks and dining option serving a comprehensive range of wines and cocktails along with traditional international and Asian favourites. Six Senses Spa offers a truly relaxing and revitalizing experience with therapeutic and pampering treatments to balance the senses. Just Kids! Has its own swimming pool and keeps children entertained all day, and at night offers evening sleepovers with professional supervision.Free wifi is available in all guests rooms and public areas. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Evason Hua Hin Hotel Pran Buri
- Evason Hua Hin Thailand/Pranburi