Radisson is a name synonymous with quality hotels. The chain's, excellent service standards, attractive accommodations and wide-ranging facilities and amenities are all well respected in the hospitality industry. Radisson Plaza, at Cape Panwa, upholds the tradition of style and comfort and its setting – in a cosy bay – adds a village-like atmosphere to this 211-rooms-villas-and-suites property.
Spread over a generous ten acres, the east-facing resort straddles a gentle incline down to the sea and embraces a nautical leitmotif throughout, with embossed waves, aqua-blue décor and fittings and themes. The lobby is an appropriate foretaste of what Radisson delivers with its regal touches, calm atmosphere and mélange of modern, traditional and post-modern décor and fittings.
Where Is It?
Radisson is located on Phuket's southeastern coast on the peaceful Makham Peninsula. It is a 45-minute drive to Phuket International Airport, just 15 minutes from Phuket Town through spectacularly green countryside and about 40 minutes from Phuket's main tourist draw and nightlife centre, Patong.
Cape Panwa village with its shops, restaurants and Phuket Aquarium, part of the Phuket Marine Biological Centre, is a stroll or a short car ride away. (View location map...)
How Many Rooms/Villas?
All in all there are 211 rooms, villas and suites including Deluxe Rooms (50sqm), Deluxe Sea-View rooms (50sqm), Junior Suites (72-90sqm), Radisson Suites (117sqm), Water Deluxe (50sqm), Serenity Suites (130sqm) Garden Villas (125sqm), Pool Villas (150sqm), Ocean Villas (125sqm), and Pool Villa Sea-views (150sqm).
In the main room the attractive mini-bar features top-of-the-range drinks and snacks, an outstanding seasonal fresh fruit selection and four free bottles of drinking water. For entertainment there's the above-mentioned free internet connection but also a 40" TV with 24 international channels and the option of free DVD's from reception.
The king-size bed is eminently comfortable and features colourful throw cushions as well as plenty of soft pillows. Next to the TV is a practical workspace while a comfortable balcony is made more so with a sofa and cushions, a coffee table and an armchair.
Views extend out over the resort into Panwa Bay with its quaint long-tail fishing boats.
My Deluxe Sea-view room sported facilities common to all rooms, villas and suites at Radisson Plaza. Particularly praiseworthy is the free plug-in and WiFi internet connection – guests simply have to claim a username and password from reception and log on.
The 50sqm room featured smoother than smooth parquet flooring, pastel yellow walls set off by dark wood fittings, a full-length mirror, fairly spacious bathroom with bathtub, rain and normal shower, basic toiletries, various lighting options, heaps and heaps of good-quality towels, a combination lock safety box, robes, slippers and umbrella.
Restaurants and Bars
Aqua, an all-day-dining restaurant deals with 122 covers and features an air-conditioned and al fresco section. The menu covers international choices along with a 270-lable wine list. Features include granite flooring, cocoa furnishings plus a spiral patterned wall fresco. To the side stands an immaculate stainless steel open kitchen for breakfast buffets and pizza preparation.
Swirling ambient music enhances the atmosphere. Outside has a smoking section. Downstairs, guests can sample Mediterranean fare at Azur, a 58-seat Midi-fisherman-themed restaurant with a substantial wine choice and both in and outdoor dining areas. The views out over the beach and bay from Azur are especially pleasant.
Edge is a state-of-the-art pool bar (it even has swim-up seats) that serves guests in the pool area smart cocktails, pastas, sandwiches and cold beer. Meanwhile, to experience one of the most unusual bar arrangements around, grab a seat in the lobby or in the Octo 'bar' overlooking the gardens and sea and try to figure where the drinks are coming from. Answer: from inside a circular wall arrangement where the drinks are prepared – it really is a unique feature. Radisson also offers room and villa service, Thai cooking classes, and Romantic Dining arrangements.
Sri Trang Ballroom is on the second storey and is suitable for meetings of up to 220 delegates theatre style and banquets for up to 170. It features an LCD projector, online digital signage, stereo surround sound and VDO conference system. Radisson also features two other, 135sqm and 85sqm meeting rooms and of course, there's free WiFi throughout the grounds.
The entire resort has a distinctly leisurely feel to it so any extras come as the cream on the cake, but with three beautifully designed freeform swimming pools, a children's pool and the adjacent beach water sport activities, all things aquatic lead the leisure list here.
The beach is not rocky as are other Panwa beaches and when the tide is out it makes for interesting exploration. Organised beach activities take place and guests can stroll up the coast to a fishing village. 'Form' is the resort's state-of-the-art air-conditioned fitness centre with all the workout equipment one could want.
A kid's club 'Saparot' (Pineapple) stands close by while adults can enter the wonderful world of spa treatment at Talay Spa on the lower level. Talay boasts an exceptional variety of treatments, massages, scrubs, body wraps, facials, masks and even an 'Ancient Himalayan Stone Therapy' which this reviewer enjoyed intensely. All in all, there are some 40 treatments to choose from in a delightfully appointed spa. Guests can purchase Biodroga and Pevonia beauty and treatment products here, as well as attractively designed flip-flops and Thai pajamas.
Radisson scores once again with a tastefully themed, cheekily appointed modern resort set in an undeniably charming spot as far away from Phuket's west coast 'pack 'em in' mentality as possible.
Radisson Plaza Resort Phuket Panwa Beach Location Map
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