Today: Top 10 best luxury hotels & resorts in Phuket
Phuket is Thailand’s largest and most popular island. Located a one hour flight south from Bangkok, the Andaman Sea island and its idyllic beaches, coves and bays are recognised as one of the Kingdom’s best tourist attractions. While Phuket has plenty of accommodation for the budget traveler, it has become a magnet for the well-healed and jetset in recent years because of the presence of a string of ultra-luxurious and super-exclusive hotels. Here’s my top 10 list of Phuket’s best luxury resorts (although my all-time favorite resort in Thailand remains phenomenal Soneva Kiri, which sits on Thailand’s 4th largest but least populated island, Koh Kood, in the Gulf of Siam).
There is more information (with review & YouTube videos) below the slideshow. Think I missed a resort in Phuket? Leave a comment.
The Racha, one of Thailand’s premier deluxe island hideaways, is set on a pristine, white beach on Racha Island, which is located 12 miles (20 km) or 35 minutes by speed boat from Phuket’s Chalong Bay. The island is known for its natural beauty, excellent corals and stunning marine life. The resort features 85 luxurious villas that range in size and price. The Lighthouse is one of the world’s most unusual hotel rooms as it is a superb five storey villa with private pool, terrace, sun deck and observation lounge offering magnificent 360 degree views over Racha Island and the Andaman Sea.
- Hotel website: The Racha
Nestled among lovely beaches, lush coconut groves, with never-ending views of the emerald-green Phang Nga Bay and idyllic landscapes of the Phuket coastline, The Naka Island is an exclusive boutique resort on Naka Yai Island, a 10 minute speedboat ride from the mainland. The highlight are the 67 magnificently designed, organic shaped villas that combine authentic island details with spectacular views. Guests can embrace a laid-back island life, rejuvenate at Spa Naka, lounge on the resort’s private beach, splash in the very large beachfront pool, or settle in for the sunset with an innovative cocktail or custom-blended juice from the resort’s spectacular Z-bar.
- Hotel website: Naka Island
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Classic Travel (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and $100 USD resort credit).
- Review: read my review of Naka Island here.
COMO Point Yamu is a stylish luxury resort located at the tip of Cape Yamu overlooking the Andaman Sea and the dramatic limestones of Phang Nga Bay. Interiors by Italian designer Paola Navone offer a unique expression of contemporary Thai luxury, alongside a COMO Shambhala wellness retreat and two world-class restaurants for Thai and Italian cuisine. Its location above the Cape, overlooking Phang Nga Bay, affords 360 degree spectacular Andaman Sea views, but there is no direct beach access. However the resort does have a private COMO Beach Club on a small island, 40 minutes by complimentary boat shuttle from the hotel.
Anantara Phuket Layan Resort & Spa is a charming tropical sanctuary in a tranquil bay setting on Phuket’s stunning western coast. The resort opens onto a private stretch of beautiful Layan Beach, where soft white sands are gently lapped by the turquoise waters of the Andaman Sea. There are 30 rooms and suites, as well as 47 pool villas in nine uniquely impressive styles, all combining pure indulgence with Anantara’s renowned hospitality. Guests here spend lazy days at the shoreline pool, plunge into a new adventure with thrilling and relaxing water sports, or unwind into signature Anantara Spa journeys.
- Hotel website: Anantara Layan Phuket Resort
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, and a complimentary 60 minutes Thai massage session for up to two).
Trisara, in Sanskrit “The Garden in the Third Heaven” is one of Phuket Island’s most special resort experience. Wrapped in a tropical forest and exotic gardens, the 48 spacious ocean facing pool villas and 2-6 bedroom private residences all embrace a lovely bay on Phuket’s sophisticated and natural north-western coastline, just 15 minutes from Phuket Airport. All pool villas, suites and residences are designed with rich interiors and enjoy a wonderful sense of privacy. Attention to detail defines the experience throughout the property, including unique natural grey marble infinity pools in all villas and suites which overflow toward the Andaman Sea.
- Hotel website: Trisara
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and $100 USD resort credit).
Curving shapes and a highly unusual architecture are the inventive dwellings of Keemala, an all pool villa wonderland nestled well away from the Phuket crowds and overlooking Kamala Village and the Andaman Sea. Shaded by an enchanted canopy of rainforest and connected together by a network of jungle walkways, the resort’s 38 villas are designed for guests wishing to experience a rustic, yet lavish, escape. Some villas are built in the canopy, featuring two floors complete with a private pool, upper level master bedroom, and a large lounge and dining area on the lower level.
- Hotel website: Keemala
- Other accolades: Keemala also features in my top 10 lists of the most instagrammable hotels in the world.
- Review: read my review of Keemala Phuket here.
Encircling the sparkling waters of a saltwater lagoon, Banyan Tree Phuket is a tropical fairytale where the roads are lined with casuarinas and palms, the fields are bright with Allamanda blooms and the Bang Tao Bay always sparkles in sapphire brilliance. The hotel is a glorious spread of elegant Thai architecture complemented with every modern amenity imaginable. The hotel is cradled within Laguna Phuket’s exclusive community, a 400-hectare former abandoned tin mining site that includes 3 km of sandy shores and is home to more than 30 restaurants and bars (with free use of inter-resort transportation by shuttle vehicle or lagoon boat).
- Hotel website: Banyan Tree Phuket
- Other 10 accolades: Banyan Tree Phuket also features in my top 10 list of the best luxury hotels in Thailand.
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and one lunch or dinner for two).
- Review: read my review of Banyan Tree Phuket here.
Six Senses Yao Noi sets the highest benchmark for island resort living in Asia. The attention to detail and focus on the unique destination reinforces the Six Senses brand’s commitment to sustainability. The 56 pool villa accommodations provide generous personal space and present an uncompromised lifestyle. Some villas overlook the striking limestone monuments that rise out of the Andaman Sea, providing an idyllic backdrop for days of tranquil indulgence. Natural materials used in the modern architecture, together with a beautiful island setting and excellent personal service, support the Six Senses philosophy of creating exceptional experiences.
- Hotel website: Six Senses Yao Noi
- Other accolades: Six Senses Yao Noi also features in my top 10 lists of the best luxury hotels in Thailand and the best Six Senses hotels & resorts in the world.
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and a complimentary 50-minute massage for up to two people, per room).
- Review: read my review of Six Senses Yao Noi here.
At an exquisite location along a 600 m (2000 ft) beachfront at Emerald Bay, Rosewood Phuket is a tropical beach hideaway akin to an ideal ocean village. Innovative design with subtle Thai influences blends organically into a lush natural landscape, while sun-weathered shores and glistening, crystalline waters help celebrate luxury island living. Featuring 71 pavilions and villas, the resort offers a secluded island escape and celebration of the brand’s ‘A Sense of Place’ philosophy, taking inspiration from the natural landscape, diverse cultures and unique sensibilities of this distinctive southern isle.
- Hotel website: Rosewood Phuket
- Other accolades: Rosewood Phuket also features in my list of the best new hotels of 2017.
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. villa upgrade, breakfast, early check-in , late check-out,’ a Sense of Place’ amenity and greeting card from management, and $100 USD food & beverage credit).
- Review: read my review of Rosewood Phuket here.
This timeless retreat on the west coast of Phuket is in harmony with its idyllic setting. Ancient Ayutthayan architecture determines the design of its pavilions and villas, which overlook lush vegetation, a gorgeous white beach and the pristine Andaman Sea. Interspersed throughout a mature coconut plantation, the Thai-style Pavilions and Villas are approached by elevated walkways, and all have a private outdoor sala (room) for dining and relaxing, shaded by tropical flora. Sloping roof lines frame soothing, spacious interiors, furnished with Thai textiles, art and antiques. The resort is the flagship hotel of Aman, one of the world’s most exclusive hotel brands.
- Hotel website: Amanpuri, Phuket
- Other accolades: Amanpuri also features in my top 10 lists of the best luxury hotels in Thailand, the best Aman hotels in the world, and the world’s most insanely beautiful hotel beaches.
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and one lunch or dinner for 2).
- Review: read my review of Amanpuri here.