Movenpick Asara Resort & Spa Hua Hin review: Thailand meets Bali

I’m in one of the private villas, with a high wooden gate that opens into a small courtyard. The room itself features a spacious living area, bedroom with king-sized bed, an enormous bathroom with large bathtub, open wardrobe-cum-dressing area, and shower which has its own door outside, leading to a second outdoor shower. On the opposite side of the villa is the private plunge pool with two recliners, a table and chairs. The decor is largely dark wood contrasted against the bright floors and walls. Even the bathroom eschews metal in favour of natural materials. If one so chooses, it would be easy to remain in the villa and never set foot outside your gate, with options like a floating breakfast delivered to your plunge pool or a barbecue cooked in the villa.

Food + drink

Baan Dum (“black house”) specialises in seafood with Thai and other Asian influences.

Baan Dum (“black house”) specialises in seafood with Thai and other Asian influences.

There are two restaurants on site, with Kampu by the main pool offering a mix of Thai and Mediterranean dishes (and also hosts the extensive buffet breakfast), while on the waterfront the Baan Dum (“black house”) specialises in seafood with Thai and other Asian influences, served al fresco in front of the titular building that dates back about 100 years to the reign of King Rama VI. The food is uniformly excellent, even when I opt to take a break from spicy Thai and order a pizza for lunch. Being a Movenpick, there’s also “chocolate hour” where complimentary sweet treats are served.

Out + about

There’s not a lot to see and do within the resort’s own neighbourhood, but it’s a short ride by car to Hua Hin’s downtown area, where there’s plenty of shopping, cafes, massage parlours and restaurants. Go to the headland to see the gold buddha and make the short hike up the hill to the Wat Khao Takiap temple (but be aware that a large population of macaques lives here, though they are not particularly aggressive by monkey standards). In the evening the large Hua Hin night market offers plenty of souvenirs though if, like me, that’s not your thing there are plenty of places to eat there as well.

The verdict

If you love Balinese-style accommodation but prefer Thailand as a destination, Movenpick Hua Hin offers the best of both worlds.

Our score out of five

★★★★

Essentials

Rooms start from $233 per night with villas from $402 per night. See movenpick.accor.com

Highlight

There are plenty of resort villas out there but the service here lives up to the Thai reputation for hospitality.

Lowlight

There’s no natural beach at the location, though the resort pools offer an adequate alternative.

The writer stayed as a guest of Movenpick Hotels.

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