Where to stay in Phuket

Anantara, Thailand

Anantara Phuket Villas

What’s so special?

Get away from the crowds in Phuket at the Anantara Villas. Right next to a protected conservation beach, the resort offers guests peace and seclusion.

How they rate it

“There may be lady boys, fake watches and ping-pong revues aplenty in parts of Phuket, but you’d never know it from Mai Khao beach,” says Amanda Hyde in The Sunday Times Travel Magazine. “This steeply shelved, coconut-milk-white stretch is heavily protected, thanks to some of its regular holidaymakers – turtles.”

This means Anantara itself is set back from the beach to avoid disturbing the animals, “carefully hidden among palm trees and completely secluded”. The bedrooms are “sheds gone luxe, with sliding doors that open onto private pools and each has a double-sized daybed for lounging in, with a beer fridge thoughtfully positioned next to it”.

The menu

“It’s not the deserted beach, the innovative drinks or the knockout rooms that make this place – it’s the breakfasts.” There is everything from omelettes to fry ups to sushi or dim sum. “The turtles won’t be the only repeat visitors.”

The cost

A double room costs from £280. For more information, visit the website at www.phuket.anantara.com, or call 00 66 76 336 100.

Naka Island, Thailand

Naka Island

What’s so special?

If you’ve always fancied a holiday on a private island, but don’t want to break the bank, then Naka Island is for you. This resort offers secluded villas, beautiful views, spa treatments and private dinners on an island that’s just a 15-minute speedboat ride from the mainland.

How they rate it

This is a “high-style tropical haven with airy villas, a pampering spa and sweeping views over Phang Nga Bay”, says Lee Cobaj in The Daily Telegraph. “There’s not a lot else to be found on the island other than a small fishing village and a couple of near-empty beaches. Perfect.”

The villas are “wrapped in clay walls and draped with jungle greenery so no one can see you skinny dipping in your private pool”. There is also an outdoor bathroom suite “complete with steam room – and maybe the occasional bright yellow tree frog”.

The menu

The food “is excellent (although pricey), which is a plus, as nipping off to the nearest restaurant involves a boat trip and a drive”. Private dinners and barbeques can be arranged either at your villa or on the beach.

The cost

From £305, including breakfast and boat transfers (www.nakaislandphuket.com; call 00 66 76 371 400).

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