Thavorn Palm Beach Resort is one of the oldest and finest accommodation options on Phuket’s lovely and long Karon Beach. Built in 1984, it has weathered the years very well and still looks and feels as fresh and modern as any recently-completed resort. The facilities, too, are as up to date as you would expect of a four-star facility with in-room amenities including free Wi-Fi internet access, air conditioning, flat-screen television with cable channels, mini bar and in-room safe.
The buildings, rooms and surroundings give the Thavorn Palm Beach Resort an almost colonial feel, similar to that which is pervasive in Phuket Old Town. The feeling is also palatial and it is impossible not to feel like a noble while you are staying there. Some of the reasons for this are shown below, along with the other reasons why we love this 198-room resort.
- Phuket FantaSea Cultural Theme Park
- Phi Phi Islands Tour with Express Boat
- James Bond Island Full-Day Tour via Big Boat
- Coral & Racha Islands Full-Day Tour
- Whitewater Rafting & 4-Wheel-Drive Adventure
- Sea Kayaking at Ang Thong Marine Park
- Flying Hanuman Ziplining Experience
- Canoeing Excursion in Phang Nga Bay with Thai Buffet Lunch
- Introduction to City Tour
- John Gray's Cave Canoeing Tour in Phang Nga Bay
Each of the five separate free-form pools has different features, including swim-up bars, fountains, waterfalls and artificial beaches, with two of them being particularly large in size. If one is getting a bit too busy for you, you’ll almost certainly find a bit of peace around one of the other four.
Not only is the resort merely the width of a quiet road away from a 500m stretch of beautiful white sandy beach and clear tropical waters, but it is also well placed for other attractions. A few hundred metres north are the various shopping options of Karon, including the local market, the Bazaar and even some small malls while the heart of the town’s nightlife – Bangla Plaza – is a short walk south.
The Thavorn Group’s motto is “where Thai tradition meets nature”, and that is particularly evident at the Thavorn Palm Beach Resort. The hotel grounds cover a total of 20 acres (83,000 sqm), of which roughly 25 per cent is hotel. The rest has been nurtured for decades, turning all-but-barren land into beautiful landscaped gardens, including the Orchid Garden which forms an oasis of perfect peace.
Amongst the choices of places to find peace and tranquility in the grounds of the resort, the Orchid Garden is one of the finest, with its colourful blossoms, natural fragrances and quirky hidden gems. A considerable portion of the garden is also set aside to growing and maintaining the majestic plants, which are synonymous with Thailand and bring splashes of colour to the hotel.
Thavorn Palm Beach Resort has a number of somewhat unusual long-term guests. The two oldest are both past retirement age, despite being still in the first flushes of youth. That’s because they’re tortoises. The hotel group’s devotion to nature extends as far as turning the grounds of this property into a menagerie, also featuring rabbits, goats and exotic birds, all of which can be visited and interacted with.
Most hotels boast an “international menu”, which is usually a selection of popular but quite basic dishes from around the world cobbled together into one list. Thavorn Palm Beach Resort takes the concept of international cuisine one step further. Alongside a café, there is an Italian Bistro with a wood-fired pizza oven, a traditional Royal Thai restaurant, a colourful Mexican eatery and various poolside and lobby cafés and bars.
Although there are certainly traditional Thai touches to the 198 rooms in the hotel, the predominant influence is Old European, which increases the colonial feeling of the place. The pastel colour scheme, colourful artworks and particularly the design of the bed and other furnishings will reminds western guests of home, albeit a palace-like home with a large private balcony overlooking a tropical paradise.
As if the little zoo was not enough for the youngsters, the hotel has a kid’s club featuring fun activities, video games and movies. Right outside is one of the five swimming pools which, at no more than 40 cm deep, is specifically for the kids. The club even has its own menu of tasty and healthy treats.
The hotel’s beachside coffee shop features a selection of very fresh and flavoursome beverages and first-class Italian ice cream in chic surroundings. However, the star of the menu is the “Iced Tea” (also coffee and chocolate). Take a glass filled with solid cubes of frozen tea and add milk. The tea cubes slowly melt and swirl into the milk, creating an experience which is as fun to watch as it is to taste.
Each of the 198 rooms of the hotel has the same first-class furnishings and fittings, but the size and view varies across the five different room classes. The 20 budget superior rooms are the only ones which do not enjoy a wonderful pool or partial sea view, unlike the 150 spacious deluxe, 12 premium deluxe and five family deluxe rooms or the four one-bedroom, six two-bedroom and one three-bedroom suites.