With more villa accommodations than rooms and suites, Anantara Phuket Layan Resort and Spa lands on Thailand’s white-sand shores.
Why Go: The jagged shape of Phuket island accounts for some of Southeast Asia’s most beautiful beaches, tucked into coves and natural recesses. The world-famous sands get quite crowded at times, but Layan Beach in front of the Anantara is nestled in a shallow bay away from heavy foot traffic. The surrounding Andaman Sea is breathtaking, and the Anantara lends kayaks, canoes, and surfboards free of charge to guests.
What to Expect: In a remake of the former Bundarika resort, Anantara has enhanced the property’s sprawling collection of structures. The existing 47 villas (from $274) and 30 suites (from $171) have been taken to the next level with all-new contemporary Thai furnishings and decor. Even standard rooms include ocean views. Some villas are beachfront, while others are set back from the coast and surrounded by private gardens. Two restaurants, two bars, and a spa that blends Chinese massage techniques, Thai ingredients, and other Asian-influenced wellness traditions with Western methods round out the property. The resort feels quite secluded, but is just a 10-minute drive from the busy Laguna area’s shops and restaurants and a 35-minute drive from the nightlife on Patong beach.
How to Get There: Find Anantara Phuket Layan 20 minutes from Phuket’s international airport. (+66.76.317.200, phuket-layan.anantara.com)