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Archive for October, 2008|Monthly archive page

Give Yourself a Great Christmas Break with the Top 10 Beach Resorts in Southeast Asia: The Recommendations

In Asia Travel, Travel on October 20, 2008 at 2:56 am

Asia beaches is always the best tourist option

Asia beaches is always the best tourist option

Well, it’s now October already. There are two more months to go until a big break at the end of the year. The year which rocked the world with worldwide economic crisis, unexpected natural disasters and unfinished war. The year which makes lots of people felt powerless, uncontrollable and stressful. As Christmas is now approaching, it’s time to leave all problems behind your back and give yourself some relax and quiet vacation…at least just for a moment.

 

However, with all economic concerns pressing from every perspective, an inexpensive and safe plus enjoyable destination would be a perfect option for this difficult period. Well, Southeast Asia would certainly remain as the best answer in this case. Besides harboring some of the world’s purist shores, the Southeast Asian region has also become more accessible to travelers in recent years with the development of international airports, health and sporting facilities.

So, how about staying in the some of the top beach resorts in Southeast Asia region? Here’re the recommendations for you;

1. Centara Grand Beach Resort and Villas, Krabi, Thailand

Sitting majestically affront the private beach of Ao Nang in Pai Plong Bay against a backdrop of dramatic limestone cliffs, the Centara Grand Beach Resort offers luxury accommodation and a stunningly beautiful view. Guests can journey to the resort with relative ease now that the township of Krabi has a domestic airport, where they are picked up and whisked away by boat to the serene shores of Ao Nang. Drawing on contemporary tropical Thai architecture, the resort’s design complements the natural elements outside, bringing the spectacular vista inside. This is a heavenly combination of opulence and naturally striking surrounds.

2. Pandanus Hotel, Phan Thiet, Vietnam

Acknowledged as the most luxurious hotel in the Phan Thiet province, the Pandanus Hotel is also located on one of Vietnam’s most attractive coastal stretches. Built inside a 10 hectare tropical garden, with its own private beach, the resort is within close proximity to the area’s famed ‘red’ sand dunes and the canyon of Mui Ne. Friendly, service-oriented staffs ensure guests are in want for nothing – and with an oceanic view like this on offer, exotic cocktail in hand, what could be better?

3. Sokha Beach Hotel, Sihanoukville, Cambodia

Poised on a peninsula that extends into the Gulf of Thailand, the Sihanoukville shore is a largely unknown treasure of Robinson Crusoe proportion. And Sokha Beach is its highlight. With such magnificent surrounds, a hotel need not go to too much effort, and yet the Sokha Beach Hotel embodies the warm hospitality of the Cambodian people and their rich culture. Its Khmer-styled, hand-crafted architecture comprises of mostly natural materials such as wood and stone, adding to the wonderful ambiance of the location.

4. Le Meridien Khao Lak Beach Resort & Spa, Khao Lak, Thailand

Overshadowed by nearby island neighbor and tourist giant, Phuket, the Khao Lak stretch of Thailand’s Southwest mainland has managed to maintain a tranquil atmosphere and an unspoiled, awe-inspiring landscape. The Le Meridien Khao Lak Beach Resort&Spa doesn’t disappoint in terms of location and service. Within an oar’s reach of the stunningly famous Phang Nga bay and accessible by car from Phuket International Airport, Khao Lak is an excellent choice for a tropical beach sojourn.

5. Shangri-La Mactan Island Resort, Cebu, Philippines

Located within the province of Cebu on Mactan Island, this Shangri-La resort certainly lives up to its name. Guests will have panoramic views of the azure Visayan Sea and its cluster of remote islands. With state-of-the-art facilities and luxurious interiors, the high standards of service further enhance this beach resort in the Philippines. The island airport also allows for easy access from many international destinations.

6. Sanur Beach Hotel, Bali, Indonesia

Sanur beach is Bali’s best-kept beach jewel. Quieter than the popular surfing beach of Kuta and other favorites such as Nusa Dua and Seminyak, this stretch of sand offers a glimpse into the Balinese fisher village lifestyle, as well as providing visitors with pristine bathing waters teeming with colorful fish. The hotel’s staff will go to extraordinary lengths to meet guest wishes and the hotels’ plush interiors and exotic Balinese design will ensure pure comfort and luxury.

7. The Empire Hotel and Country Club, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam

Built on a colossal 162-hectare landscape of tropical garden, the Empire Hotel takes the concept of luxury accommodation to an entire new level. It is impressive in every detail when it comes to service and facilities, but more importantly (well, for the purposes of this article at least), is located on a magnificent stretch of coastline. Guests can fully escape into this private utopia which also boasts its own golf course.

8. Zeavola Hotel, Koh Phi Phi, Thailand

Phi Phi is a long island favorite among Thailand’s frequent beach travelers. Its beaches are simply idyllic with their powdery sand shores and clear waters. The boutique Zeavola hotel offers Phi Phi paradise with luxury amenities disguised by a rural feel and charm. A unique accommodation option positioned in front of a prime, serene stretch of beach, couples can relish in the resort’s privacy and lush natural environment.

9. Berjaya Redang Beach Resort, Terangganu, Malaysia

Malaysia is often surpassed by the highly publicized tourist destinations of Indonesia and Thailand for its natural offerings, despite it being rich in beauty. Redang Island is one such example and the Berjaya Redang Beach Resort offers guests private access to one of the country’s finest beaches – one accentuated by vibrant corals and tropical fish. The comfortable villas and rooms have a tropical beach feel that encourages relaxation, while friendly staff and excellent water sports facilities make it a good choice for families and couples alike.

10. Furama Resort, Danang, Vietnam

The largely undeveloped coastal stretch which stretches 25km from Hoi An to Danang on Vietnam’s Central Coast, is one of the countries most magnificent. Known in English as China Beach, the Furama Resort was the first luxury hotel to be built along this unspoiled coast. The design blends Vietnamese style with tropical architecture and the staffs are friendly and helpful. Only 10 minutes drive from Danang International Airport, this hotel has become a preferred choice among Southeast Asian beach seekers.

 

 

Top 10 Bangkok Hotels with Amazing Views: The Recommendations

In Asia Travel, Travel on October 2, 2008 at 7:02 am
Stays Top of Bangkok

Stays Top of Bangkok

Everyone knows that Thailand has been one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world for years, and if you don’t know…its capital city “Bangkok” recently earned the award “Best City in Asia,” for the seventh year in a row in the recent Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards. The city is well-known as the best place which has everything to offer to different types of visitors, from its modern infrastructure and world-renowned hospitality and service, to our rich culture and to-die-for cuisine. Moreover, three of the ten “Best Hotels in Asia” from the same institution awards are amazingly also located in Bangkok: The Oriental, The Peninsula and The Shangri-La.

Being a city so rich in sights and sounds, seemingly everywhere, Bangkok can feel overwhelming at times. Luckily Bangkok hotels have made enjoying the city’s wonderful madness a little easier, by creating outstanding viewpoints to enjoy this vast city. Today, Bangkok sprawls in every direction, extending beyond the horizon. Still a massive network of streets and sois, the city now bristles with skyscrapers, mega malls, elevated expressways and sky trains. The ubiquitous food stalls, markets, world class shopping and nightlife still attract tourists in droves, but it’s the elegance and modernity of the city that consistently surprises.

So, if Bangkok is one of your top favorites or there will be your first-time visit to this great city in the near future, here’re recommendations for the top 10 hotels showcasing Bangkok’s amazing views:

1. Lebua at State Tower, Sirocco-Located on the 63rd floor of The Dome at the Lebua at State Tower, Sirocco is the world’s highest al fresco restaurant. Also one of Bangkok’s most coveted dining choices, the experience never fails to leave one mesmerized. This award-winning restaurant offers breathtaking views of Bangkok and the Chao Phraya River.

2. The Banyan Tree, Vertigo Grill & Moon Bar – Located on the 61stfloor, Vertigo is one of the landmarks of fine dining in Bangkok. The top floor of the Banyan Tree Hotel offers spectacular panoramic views of Bangkok. Even without trying the decadent menu, just witnessing the sunset at Vertigo is an unforgettable experience. The slow melt of the sun into darkness, ultimately revealing the sparkling lights of the Bangkok night, leaves guests awestruck.

3. Centara Grand at CentralWorld, A gourmet dining & grill restaurant, Fifty Five is dramatically perched on the 54th and 55th floors, with amazing views of Bangkok, set to serve the very best Thailand has to offer. Red Sky a chic, urban bistro and lounge with breathtaking, al fresco vistas of Bangkok, located on the 55th floor. Both scheduled to open in September 2008.

4. The Dusit Thani, D’Sens – A graceful French restaurant, D’Sens is located on the top floor of the hotel. The large windows allow guests to gaze out onto all the early evening activity of historical Lumpini Park and the hustle and bustle of Silom, Bangkok’s city center.

5. The Landmark Hotel, RR & B Bar- A roof-top steakhouse and bar, RR & B is located on the 31 stfloor, offering breathtaking views of the city’s skyline and one of Bangkok’s best grills.

6. The Westin Grande Sukhumvit Hotel, Horizon Sky Lounge and Karaoke- Follow dinner with drinks, music and questionable karaoke at the Horizons Sky Lounge and Karaoke with its panoramic views of Bangkok’s sparkling lights.

7. The Baiyoke Sky, Thailand’s tallest hotel with 3 fantastic restaurants located at its peak. The Bangkok Sky Restaurant on the 76th and 78th floors, the Crystal Grill on the 82nd floor and the rocking Roof Top Bar & Music on the 83rd floor, Thailand’s highest entertainment venue.

8. The Oriental Hotel, The Verandah – With a massive patio extending out onto the Chao Phraya River, the elegant Verandah is the perfect spot to enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner. Renovated in 2005 the Verandah serves delectable Asian and Western cuisines in subtle Thai surroundings. The majestic Oriental Hotel was just ranked number 14 in Travel and Leisure’s Top 500 Hotels.

9. The Millennium Hilton Bangkok – Three Sixty Lounge- Sitting 32 floors up and chilling out to a little jazz, the Three Sixty Lounge provides the perfect setting to take Bangkok all in. A relaxed, romantic setting with an extensive cocktail list, this jazz bar is quickly becoming a city favorite.

10. The Peninsula Hotel, Thiptara Restaurant – Thiptara literally translates to ‘heaven on water’ and the Thiptara Restaurant is just that, set on the picturesque banks of the Chao Phraya River nestled under a huge Banyan tree. The Peninsula’s new Thiptara Thai restaurant offers authentic, Thai home-style food served outdoors, in teakwood, Thai-style pavilions. Bangkok’s outstanding Peninsula Hotel was just ranked number 17 in Travel and Leisure’s Top 500 Hotels.