Cape Panwa is the name of the area on the south easternmost tip of Phuket island, Thailand Though this part of the island was one of the first areas to boast a luxury hotel, today it lags the development seen on the west coast. Although the area is quite remote, Cape Panwa is one of the most popular destinations on the island, thanks to stellar high-end resorts like Sri Panwa Resort and Cape Panwa Resort.

Around this area there are few must-visit attractions, from beaches, islands, waterfalls and, of course, magnificent views, while still being only 15 minutes (10 kms) from the center of Phuket Town.

Mr. Kitti Attakitmongkol from Rainy Night magazine has taken his audience to visit Cape Panwa Resort which is located here (via photo). This website is aimed to circulate trips reviews from foreign travelers. If you can read Thai, please his review in Pantip.com or his online magazine in Thai at Rainy Night or “ชานไม้ชายเขา”. All photos were taken by him.

The Cape Panwa Hotel is one of server luxury hotels on the island of Phuket. According to reviews from many sources, it is considered one of the first luxury resorts on Phuket upon its completion in 198o. Cape Panwa boasts one of the most perfect locations in Phuket, cascading down a hillside above a long secluded stretch of pure white sands. The resort is consider to have one of the best spot for sunrise in Phuket. Don’t be confused with Sri Panwa Hotel, which is another luxury hotel in the same area.

The following is advertising description from the hotel’s website.

The luxurious Cape Panwa Hotel is in a quiet area on Panwa Beach. It features 10 dining options, a well-furnished spa and luxurious accommodations with sweeping views of the sea.  The resort excellent service, modern rooms and private beach are mixed with a natural beauty of Andaman Sea and exotic tropical forest.

All rooms are classified in a low rise one to four storey buildings and are all bounded by a scenic coconut grove and lush tropical gardens. The elegant rooms at Panwa Cape hotel have spacious balconies and lounge chairs. A flat-screen TV and DVD player are also provided. Make your vacation escape from the busy world in a peaceful corner of southeast Phuket, combination excellently Thai hospitality with the natural beauty of the vicinity.

Guests can take a dip in two outdoor swimming pools, or go on a snorkeling trip. Day trips and travel arrangements can be made at the on-site tour desk. Café Andaman serves Thai and international dishes and fresh seafood is available at Top of the Reef. Light snacks and refreshing beverages can be enjoyed at the beach-side Bamboo Bar. Hotel Cape Panwa is a 10-minute drive from central Phuket and a 50-minute drive from Phuket International Airport.

What to do around here.

Enjoy the beaches
Cape Panwa has one of the beautiful beaches in Phuket.  Beside the beach in front of Cape Panwa Hotel, others in this area are not ideal for swimming but are perfect for lazing about in the sun. The most of hotels here have the most beautiful private beach of all the resorts in the area. White sands and idyllic blue water make this beach a great place to unwind, and it is restricted to hotel guests. Not sure this is socially friendly or not but it is the way they do hotel business here. A little drive away is a beach called Ao Yon. This quiet beach is home to fishermen and a number of yachts. Local restaurants offer boat trips if you fancy a spot of fishing.

Visit water falls
Phuket is a relatively small island. Who will believe it has a lot of waterfall in it. In fact, it is the second most popular natural attractions of the island behind beaches. Near Cape Panwa, there is Ao Yon Waterfall which is situated 10 minutues from Cape Panwa. This place is quite difficult to find for new comersm it is right where Soi Ruam Jai Ao Yon ends. It also takes a little trekking to reach the spot but it’s worth it for its strong water flow, especially during rainy season.

View from the lookout
If you want to see panoramic view, there is a place nearby. Khao Khat Views Tower is located slightly out of the way, in Wichit District on Skdidej Road past through Mudong Canal. Here you have to climb a few steps or take the natural wooden bridge trail to reach the top for a 360-degree view of south Phuket and its nearby islands. From here you can see many of popular spot at the distance, such as Chalong Bay, Makham Bay, Cape Panwa and, the Big Buddha. To get the best view, go there in the afternoon until sunset.

Visit the Aquarium
If you are a aquarium kind of person, at at the tip of the cape is the Phuket Aquarium (51 Mu 8, Sakdidej Road, 076-391-051, www.phuketaquarium.org). It is located on beachside at the tip of Cape Panwa.  Though it is quite old now, it still acts as a valuable education center exhibiting all kinds of seawater fish species, as well as doling out knowledge on how to protect the local ecosystem.

Here, they also house turtles that have been rescued from the sea and are now looked after by the aquarium officials. The Panwa beach next to it also has a great view from afternoon till sunset when colorful longtail boats dot the beach.

Take a trip to islands
If you are here for a long stay, visit some of the island nearby is a great idea.  There are two islands close to Cape Panwa. One island is called Coral Island or Koh Hae, three kilometers southeast of Phuket, has two beaches, Banana Beach and Long Beach, where you can view the impressive coral reef with a bit of snorkeling. The island is also great for doing water sports like kayaking.  There are longtail boat at the aquarium to the island, it take approximately 45 minutes each way.

The cost is B1,200 roundtrip including and include lunch and light snacks. Another island is located 12 kms south of Phuket lies Racha Island or Koh Raya. This island is famous for diving and snorkeling. The clear waters and white sands see day-trippers flock here, with some even staying on in the bungalows and resorts that have begun to spring up. Day trips by speedboat take around 30 minutes each way and cost B1,600 roundtrip inclusive of lunch and light snacks.

Hotel Facilities

  • Airport Transfers
  • Babysitting
  • Banquet Facilities
  • Bar/Pub/Lounge
  • Beachfront
  • Beauty Salon/Barber
  • Business Centre
  • Car Rental
  • Children Play Ground
  • Children Pool
  • Coffee Shop
  • Conference Facilities
  • Fitness Centre
  • Internet Access
  • Jacuzzi
  • Laundry
  • Limousine Service
  • Massage
  • Non-smoking Rooms
  • Parking
  • Restaurant
  • Room Services
  • Room with Balcony
  • Sea View Rooms
  • Shopping
  • Spa
  • Steam/Sauna
  • Swimming Pool
  • Tour Desk
  • Water Sport Equipment
  • WiFi Internet

Room Facilities

  • Air-conditioning
  • Baby Cot
  • Bath Tub
  • CD Player
  • Cable / Satellite TV
  • Coffee / Tea facilities
  • Hair Dryer
  • IDD / Direct Dial Lines
  • In-House Movies
  • Mini bar / Fridge
  • Safe Deposit Box
  • Telephone
  • Television
  • VCD / DVD Player

Room Types

1) Superior Rooms
Newly renovated, all Superior Rooms feature sea-facing balconies with partial view of Cape Panwa and the Andaman Sea.
Size: 36 sq.m.
Availability: 37

2) Junior Suite
Room is spacious & comfortable and features everything needed for a relaxing & comfortable stay.
Availability: 55

3) Cape Suite
The Cape Suite strike the perfect balance between modern resort living, complete with LAN internet access.
Availability: 55

4) Cape Signature
Our Cape Signature Suite are simply stunning; elegant and spacious live and sleeping.
Availability: 89

5) Cape Signature
Our Cape Signature Suite are simply stunning; elegant and spacious live and sleeping.
Availability: 2

6) Family Suite
The Family Suite is comprised of a connecting Superior Room Perfect for families.
Availability: 5

7) Bedroom Pool Villa
All 6 Pool Villa are surrounded by lush tropical gardens ensuring total privacy for occupant.
Availability: 2

8) Panwa Lodge
Enjoy the privacy of Panwa Lodge, our unique three-bedroom Mansion with a private pool.
Availability: 1

Positives
– Hotel is set on the beachfront. The beach here is clean and very private.
– Most of room can see ocean view from balcony. However, some room have trees obstruct the view.
– Absolute Suite is the best here, with private pool and panoramic seen view from the room.
– Great spot to see sunrise.
– There are a few dinning room, cafe and restaurants inside the hotel.
– The hotel is very old but the management try very hard to keep in it good condition.
Negatives:
– Some parts of the hotel look old, and some of them are not well-maintained.
– Many staff don’t speak English.
– Even the staff in management level has good reputation of giving superb service, past years the hotel have been criticized for dull service from staff in operational-level, for example there was not greetings, staff were not friendly, less support from staff when guests needed help, etc. Nowadays, this would probably improved.

Now let’s begin exploring the hotel. If you arrive Phuket buy air, you can arrange a hotel pickup from Phuket airport. It will take approximately 1 hour from the airport to the hotel.

 

First, please note that this hotel is not a new hotel. In fact, as its opening in 1980, it is one of the oldest luxury hotel Phuket. Being old doesn’t mean look and feel have to be old. Here the hotel has renovated its structure and change the decoration from time to time.

This is the lobby area.

The lobby is decorated to have sea feeling.

Seats near the lobby, and stairs to somewhere beneath. As you can see from the floor, the hotel shows appearance that it has been operate for a long time.  There is a restaurant called “Cafe Andaman”. In front of Cafe Andaman, there is a big pool. Sunlight here is quite strong, there are roofs for some of pool chairs.

Another angle of the pool.

Now let’s check the rooms. First type of rooms is Cape Signature Suite. It’s spacious and very beautiful. There are only 2 Cape Signature Suite available.

The normal rate of this type of room is 12,000 Baht a night, but normally it will be around 8,000 if booked via online travel agencies (OTA) like Agoda, Booking, Expedia, etc.

There is another bathtub in the balcony. You can see the ocean clearly from here. It’s really nice in the evening but during the day it is usually hot.

There is daybed available for you relaxation.

Rooms have always been renovated, repaired and keep maintenance high. The look and feel inside the rooms are just the same as of those new modern hotels. You wouldn’t believe that this is a 40-year-old hotel.

Now let’s go to dinning area. The dinning area which is another house near the beach is intentionally preserved to have the same style as it was 40 years ago. This house is called “Baan Panwa”

You can see it’s old style stars and corridor. Some guests complained about how this area look. But according to the hotel, it wants to keep it look this way. Don’t know why. Maybe the owners want to remind themselves about good old days.

Now let’s go for some food.

Thai sweet – Mango with sticky rice is very famous dessert.

You can sunrise from your room. Of course, in this hotel you will miss ocean sunset. You can see the view, including the ocean, for almost 180 degree angle. All Cape Signature Suite have very good outlook.

You can see some clues that the hotel is old. Now going to the beach. The beach is very close. There is a walk way from the hotel to small harbor nearby.  The beach here is very long.  The view of sandy beach in front of the hotel – not very crowed. Water is very clear. You can see how clear the water is. Beach at Cap Panwa is a very good location to view sunrise.

Another view of the beach and Andaman sea. Since this part of Phuket is mostly visited by wealthy people, you can usually see a few yachts in the sea.

There is a building for dinning. This old-styled house is called Baan Panwa. It’s close to the beach.

Now let’s go to hotel’s bar. The bar is decorated to have a feeling of fish market. The light house is one of the most popular spot here.

The hotel also has another dining room called “Cafe Andaman”. It serves international food.

Now let’s visit what has to be the “highlight” of the hotel. The room called Cape Absolute Suite. It’s the best and most expensive room in the hotel.  This type of room is set on separate building. There is private pool at the rooftop of the building. The room has a butler to provide service for 24 hours. Living corner is spacious. Great view of ocean can be seen from here.  There are 2 separate bed rooms, but judging from the size this type of room can fit 8 people because it is really huge. You can see the view almost 180 degree angle.  In early morning, this room has great view of sunrise.

Source:
Rainy Day (ชานไม้ชายเขา) By Kitti Attakitmongkol

 Images:
All images were taken by Mr. Kitti Attakitmongkol of Rainy Day Online Magzine

 

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