Like fine wine, Andara has managed to age elegantly, maintaining its romantic appeal even after 10 years
Strategically nestled atop a hill in the West Coast of tourist favourite Phuket, Andara Resort & Villas is a destination in itself. With palm trees, freshly-manicured gardens, and water features, its lush exterior ensure interconnectedness with nature. Indoors, the wooden pillars, mahogany floors, and Buddha statues reflect Thai culture, exuding warmth and comfort, enchanting guests to a zen-like state.
The 47-acre five-star resort comes with 63 grandiose pool villas and suites, featuring unparalleled views of the majestic Andaman Sea. All the rooms are spread out to maximise privacy, with on-call buggies to take guests to the onsite restaurant, spa, gym, or even to the nearby Kamala Beach.
Founded by the father of Lan Kwai Fong in Hong Kong Dr. Allan Zeman, Andara has proven to be the perfect getaway for couples looking for a romantic retreat, or for families looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city. This elegantly designed, impeccably managed resort came into fruition after one of Dr. Zeman’s many trips to his vacation home in Phuket.
Looking out from his home, he saw this pristine piece of land on the other side of the bay. Fortunately, at the time, the land became available.
“So I bought it and came up with the vision to do Andara. Basically, dara in Thai means star combined with Andaman Sea where the resort would be,” reminisced Dr. Zeman.
It was kismet.
Fast forward 10 years or so, the resort is still at the top of its game, with zero hints that it has been operating for a decade. The outstanding customer service, the cleanliness of the rooms, and the timeless design of the resort are definitely key to their long-term success.
Leading the team on site is general manager and seasoned hotelier Daniel Meury who has worked in Asia since the start of his career 25 years ago and has been based in Phuket for over 10 years now. Having led the resort’s accomplishments firsthand, we were quite intrigued as to how he managed such a feat, and so he shared his insights with us.
Can you tell us a brief intro about yourself, as well as your vision for Andara?
I have been with Andara for over seven years now and it feels like it was just yesterday when I left hotel management school in Switzerland to venture on my first job in Asia! I have had the pleasure of working in six Asian countries and Thailand is by far, the most dynamic.
Our vision [for Andara] is a shared one, and it’s really to make a positive impact on our guests’ journey in Phuket. Throughout their stay and even after they leave, we want them to feel that their decision to stay with us is very much appreciated. In today’s global environment, with an overwhelming amount of choices, making these moments special and positive for our guests is something our entire team is able and excited to deliver. Our guests know this, and that’s why so many of them come back, year after year.
How do you maintain such a massive development that was built 10 years ago?
We have a strong team who are highly skilled and committed to our guests. Andara has 63 multi-bedroom suites and villas, and our service standards are one of the highest in Phuket, with that, comes training and a respectful culture. Plus, our resort was built on very high-quality materials so the upkeep and maintenance is easier. We also put strong emphasis to ensure that all our suites and villas are kept in best condition.
What can guests expect when they stay at your resort?
Our resort experience team is here to make sure that each of our guests has a memorable stay, and that is different for each guest. But they can expect to enjoy the beauty of Phuket and a team that is happy to assist with making those moments a reality!
Expect to feel special, even if it’s a small thing, like learning about Thai dancing during our Tuesday night Thai cultural dinners where the focus is on the cuisine and dance of a specific region! Guests can also indulge by having a private chef during their stay, which is complimentary for pool villa bookings, and is also available for a surcharge in all our suites, which comes with a fully equipped kitchen.
We have an in-house recreation team for personal training and tennis coaching, as well as daily group classes at our fitness centre, including Muay Thai and yoga. One of the best-kept secrets of Andara is that we also offer our guests a complimentary Kamala Bay shuttle service, and our guests love the open-air rides to the beach.
Ever since SILK Restaurant & Bar expanded from Surin Plaza to Andara a few years ago, we were able to do more exciting culinary events, particularly with connecting pool area outside. We schedule poolside BBQs or special dinners, such as our recent “Widder Kitchen Pop-up” in conjunction with Chef Tino from Zurich and FIN Wines from Bangkok for organic, one of a kind boutique wines.
For guests looking for something really special, Andara has a private yacht called the Celebrity, which is great for day trips to explore the beauty of Phuket, as well as memorable overnight trips to secluded islands.
And since it is love month, we could not help but ask Daniel about the romantic amenities and special deals at the resort.
Do you have any special offers for Valentine’s Day or for the entire month of February?
On February 14th, we have a special poolside romantic dinner prepared by our Italian Executive Chef Andrea and his team at Silk! The Andara Spa couple’s massage is also a must, and available all month-long, either in one of our spacious couple’s treatment rooms or in-villa.
Can you tell us about the romantic features of the rooms?
We are a sea view all-suite and villa property so privacy in the spacious suites and villas is in itself, one of the most romantic features of the rooms. Modern Thai designed suites start at 153 square metres, but one of the most requested room types for couples is our Penthouse Pool Suite.
The penthouse pool suite is like a villa, in that it has a lot of open space, but also has a private staircase leading up to an exclusive rooftop infinity pool and deck.
This is a popular suite for couples and romantic occasions, especially with a private candlelit dinner at the rooftop.
For really romantic moments, a pool villa is the perfect sanctuary for a couple who really wants privacy and something truly special.
For more details, special savings, and direct booking offers, visit our website andaraphuket.com
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