Over 75% of our collection is located either on, or close to, the beach. We have some really outstanding options here. Of course the Caribbean, with the west coast of Barbados and St Lucia and virtually everywhere in Antigua worth emphasising. In the Indian Ocean Mauritius is equally blessed, plus of course the magical Maldives. And then Asia, with Thailand, Malaysia , Indonesian and in particular Lombok and Vietnam all offering some fantastic relaxing opportunities. In Arabia , the beaches in Oman , Dubai and particularly Abu Dhabi are special . Closer to home, the beaches of the Algarve in Portugal and the Canary Islands are world famous, but just as enticing would be the stunning water clarity of Greece and Turkey.
We like to think we were one of the first to fully appreciate the desirability and appeal of a real boutique hotel. The word has now probably become over used and maybe abused, but those we have identified can truly be classified as boutique. Keep in mind you generally choose boutique for the unique style and the personalised attention rather than extensive resort facilities. If you want choice of restaurant and extensive on site activity, then you need to look at a larger, maybe less personalised, property. Also boutique, given their style, generally tend to be more adult focused than family friendly. We have so much choice here, particularly in Asia, but we think Zazen on Koh Samui is very special, as is Heritage Suites in Cambodia. In Bali we particularly like the traditional combined with contemporary quality of the Kayumanis Retreats. , located in the Nusa Dua area or Pavilions in Sanur
Of course culture exists in all of all featured destinations. The appeal of the cites such as Barcelona, Seville, Madrid and Malaga is well known and popular. Within the tropics, Asia is probably the region with the most fascinating and contrasting cultures, totally different to anything you have experienced in Europe which rather adds to the appeal. The lifestyle, the food, the contrasting scenery, the pace and the faces – they all form part of the very diverse culture of the region.
We have identified several resorts that are particularly good for families, yet at the same time adults do not have to compromise their own high expectations. Particularly worth mentioning would be Sheraton Algarve, Sani Resorts and Daios Cove in Greece, Princesa Yaiza Lanzarote and both Abama and Bahia Del Duque in Tenerife. In Mauritius Paradis, Trou Aux Biches and Residence are all popular whilst in Thailand Pullman Khao Lak and Santiburi in Koh Samui are both very good options. In Malaysia we would suggest the Shangri-La Rasa Ria in Sabah and the Pelangi Beach in Langkawi . For those whose children have moved beyond the face painting stage, we particularly like the idea of a tor around the Far East and the phrase “education can start when term time ends“ comes to mind.
Romance and Honeymoon
A real speciality of ours. Some totally unique hide and chic retreats. In some cases, deliberately off the beaten track, but the seclusion is all part of the appeal. Koh Kood in Thailand, or The Aava Resort in Khanom come to mind, as does Princess D’Annam in Vietnam. Or up in the hills of Ubud in Bali, where we have some very special hotels, simply wonderful. Gaya Island in Sabah , Malaysia . The Maldives of course, they seemed to have created with romance in mind. The resorts are mainly attractive to compatible couples focused, as much of the appeal will be enjoying and (re) discovering each other, rather than extensive resort distractions. In many resorts we are able to offer villas with private pools, which can certainly add to the romantic mood.
Over 90% of our resorts have some kind of Spa facility. Where we think the facilities are exceptional, we have highlighted with a special Spa logo. Particularly worth considering would be Asia Garden And Thai Spa in Alicante, the touch of the Orient yet just 2 hours from UK. The Anassa in Cyprus which is equally attractive. The incredible spas of the Indian Ocean, with The Maldives particularly innovative, including some underwater options. And of course the Far East, the originators of the concept and probably still the most influential with new ideas and therapies constantly introduced. In Thailand and Bali you are really spoilt for choice , but we have to particularly mention Chiva -Som International Health Resort in Hua Hin .
Villa Holidays .
Many of our featured hotels have freestanding villas within their resort estate so you can enjoy the best of both worlds -extensive in site facilities plus the independence of a villa holiday . We generally do not work with privately owned villas as this is beyond our level of expertise and we are unsure who will are working with and tend to get nervous handing over 50% of the rental way in advance . Examples we enjoy would be Pine Cliffs Algarve , Bahia Del Duque in Tenerife , Borgo Egnazia in Italy , Wanakarn and Pullman in Khao Lak Thailand , Samaya in Bali .
Escapism and Hide and Chic Retreats .
Intentionally off the beaten track resorts where the longer journey is all part of the experience . Generally away from developed areas , hotels will be mainly small and self contained with limited dining options once outside . Compatible company is a must ! Sometimes incidental costs can be high as a taxi might be required to get to alternatives . Call us on this and we would be delighted to go through the options .
I would say that at least 50% of our featured resort hotels have at least one championship golf course within 15 minutes drive . Several have a course adjacent to the resort . Ask us for suggestions . Names that come to mind with excellent courses adjacent would be Abama Tenerife , Finca Cortesin Malaga , Borgo Egnazia in Puglia , Pine Cliffs Algarve , Datai Langkwai , Dusit Thani & Outrigger Phuket , Santiburi Samui , Naman in Hoi An Vietnam .
Colonial style , grand and opulent , with refined elegance . Names like Raffles Singapore or Peninsula in Hong Kong immediately come to mind but within Asia there are many more delightful little gems . Sri Lanka in particular has some stunning boutique heritage former tea plantations converted into delightful small hotels .