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Sri panwa

Phuket, Thailand - Hotel Review

Oceanfront Villas

by Evelyn Chen

Views of the sea from a villa
Enjoy a commanding view of the azure sea from all areas of the villas

On the southeastern tip of Phuket lays a sleepy fishing village called Cape Panwa. Made up largely of Muslims, Cape Panwa is located far from the madding crowd of Patong, and has long been known for its exhibits of marine life at the Aquarium. Since the inception of Sri panwa in late 2005, Cape Panwa has decidedly gone upmarket, attracting attention of a different kind; from local party types, wedded couples with deep pockets, celebrities and corporate jet setters seeking an elegant place to chill out.

Sri panwa is arguably the slickest, most starry arrival on the Phuket resort scene. Constructed on a cliff above the bay over 32 acres of undisturbed rainforest, Sri panwa is a boutique resort development comprising 30 villas (one and two bedroom villas as well as residential homes with up to six bedrooms.

From the moment you step out of the four-wheel drive limousine transfer, you enter a pavilion surrounded by lily pads, you see nothing but the glistening Andaman Sea. The same sweeping sea view beguiles you as you descend the steps to an airy chamber for check-in.

Like all villas here, our glorious one bedroom villa was surrounded by lush vegetation with a massive Thai style sala, a hugely decadent infinity pool that wraps around the glass-framed master bedroom, an outdoor terrazzo-soaking tub and deck chairs for sun worshipping. The living suite is decked with a glass-top dining table and an oversize lounge sofa with cushions in cream and matt. Yards of light cream cotton blinds conceal the pool and an outdoor sala that overlooks the azure sea.

A bedroom inside a villa An outdoor shower and tub

A double panel wooden door opens into a master bedroom with wooden lath rooftop and sliding ceiling to floor glass windows framed by deep red Bordeaux cotton blinds. A set of Spanish lamps with veneer shades adds a designer touch to this chic bedroom, while complimentary iPod and laptop use complete the modern elements.

If you are in a serious mood for some pampering, try the charming Cool Spa, best described as relaxed rather than glamorous. Men with kinks to be kneaded may consider a "strong" Thai massage. Ladies, on the other hand, may opt for the Purity Aromatic treatment, a Thai style facial that ends with a relaxing warm herbal compress to restore balance. While it may not erase your wrinkles, this facial compress improves blood circulation and works wonders in plumping the skin immediately to reveal a radiant complexion, not bad at all for a 60-minute job.

For those who prefer a simple fare without the pomp, Baba dining lounge provides European fare (truly delicious pan seared scallops with black pepper sauce) and contemporary Thai food (fried rice or noodle). If you are just feeling peckish, checkout Baba's lemongrass fried chicken wings, which we hear, are attracting quite a following in and around Phuket.

Sri panwa
88 Moo 8 Sakdidej Rd.,
Tambon Vichit
Phuket 83000 Thailand
(66) 76 371 0000

Going to Thailand? Check out our guide

(Updated: 05/01/08 DN)

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