If you are seeking a holiday in a beautiful setting with great service, consider JW Marriott Phuket Resort and Spa. Set on the white sands of the stunning and secluded Mai Khao beach, a quick 15-minute drive from the Phuket International Airport, this luxury resort is sure to impress.
Many of us are familiar with the JW Marriott brand name, synonymous for quiet luxury and world-class service. However, this resort in Mai Khao surpasses even the greatest expectation. The highly trained staff’s service is extraordinary and the resort’s rooms and facilities are world-class. It certainly deserves the five stars the resort is rated, and more.
There are several different types of rooms available at the resort; some with views of the tropical landscaped gardens, the pool or the stunning Andaman Sea. All the rooms are elegantly appointed with highly polished floors, decorated with Jim Thompson Thai silks, marble bathrooms and a ‘sala’ which is a traditional Thai-style raised area with cushions (perfect for reading a book on an afternoon). Each room also features a balcony or a terrace. If you want the ultimate luxury, there are one- or two-bedroom villas with private access to the Andaman Sea. Regardless of what class of room you choose, you’ll be spoiled with luxurious bedding, spacious rooms and wonderful room service.
The rooms are all close to the beautiful white Mai Khao Beach as well as the three large resort pools. The main pool is the perfect spot for families, dotted with stone turtles and complete with a water slide. Staff provide fresh fruit slices and icy poles to children (and adults!) by the poolside. ‘Beside the Sea Pool Bar’ is also popular with families for breakfast and lunch. The other two pools are more suited to adults – quiet and surrounded by lush, tropical landscaped gardens. ‘Out of the Blue Splash Bar’ is a definite must if you feel like a drink, with it’s wonderful swim-up bar and cascading waterfall. Enjoy a delicious cocktail made by the friendly staff at the bar and enjoy a cooling swim.
If you want to be active during your stay, there are also tennis courts, beach volleyball courts, bikes for hire and jogging trails, as well as the resort gym fitted with essential equipment. For travellers with children, whether small or in their teens, there is a fantastic Kids Club on the resort that runs fully supervised programs during the day. I recommend a visit to the Mai Khao Marine Foundation, located at the resort. This Foundation ensures the conservation of the leatherback and other sea turtles of Phuket. Read more about the sea turtle conservation on Phuket here.
The resort also offers luxurious spa treatments at the Mandara Spa. We tried the aromatic massage and the traditional Thai massage. The aromatic massage was luxurious and relaxing, and the traditional Thai massage, also known as Nuad Borarn, was a wonderful healing therapy of acupressure and stretching techniques.
Befitting a five-star resort, JW Marriott Phuket Resort and Spa boats several top-notch restaurants. We tried four of the restaurants at the resort during our stay. Marriott Cafe served the delicious breakfast buffet. We feasted on fresh fruit, freshly baked breads, perfect coffees and so much more each morning, all while enjoying the stunning views of the landscaped resort from the deck.
Cucina serves authentic Italian fare and was awarded the best Italian food in Asia by Conde Nast Traveller. A casual restaurant with an open kitchen and a wood-fired pizza oven, the dishes are created using many local ingredients and there’s also a great wine list. We feasted on a sumptuous lunch of linguini vongole and a creamy burrata salad. Burrata is a cream-infused mozzarella cheese, and the chef told us that Cucina’s burrata is sourced locally. This delicious salad was simply served with burrata cheese, rucola and balsamic vinegar dressing topped with sun-dried tomatoes. I would definitely go back for a meal at Cucina, as it was thoroughly enjoyable. The seafood served at Cucina and all other restaurants at the resort is purchased from local sea gypsies. It’s part of JW Marriott’s commitment to sustainability, purchasing fresh seafood and produce from local sustainable sources.
At the resort’s Thai restaurant, Ginja Taste, we had the opportunity to try their famous Ancient Wild menu. The menu, created by Chef Tham, features ancient recipes passed down by the legendary Premchit family utilising wild, local ingredients foraged from Phuket and Phang Nga provinces. Chef Tham’s family recipes are also featured on the menu. He grows most ingredients in his famous ‘Chef Tham’s jungle’. The dishes we tried were all divine; traditional Khao Yai-style smoked shrimp dip served with fresh and blanched garden vegetables, Phang Nga-style rice salad, red curry of cockle mushroom and spring chicken, Mai Khao white prawns in coconut milk, and grandmother’s favourite turmeric-infused fish and coconut soup. Ginja Taste also has an incredible wine list.
Another restaurant to dine in at the resort is the Andaman Grill. It’s an American steakhouse set in the tropical landscaped gardens of the resort. It’s an open air, wooden pavilion restaurant, where you’re treated to the stunning views of the ocean and the gardens. Enjoy perfectly grilled steak or fresh seafood caught in the Andaman Sea. Their wine list features more than 200 different wines from around the world. We had an incredible five-course meal here, complete with a bottle of amazing pinot noir. Our dinner started with an amuse of tuna tartare, followed by an appetiser of oysters. Our third course were Hokkaido scallops swimming in gin white sauce and garnished with blue pea flowers. This dish was so delicately flavoured and delicious. Our fourth course was sea bass with white sauce, served with roasted fennel and cherry tomatoes with a dollop of house-made tomato jam. We then had the mouthwateringly delicious wagyu beef cheeks with truffle mash and roasted potatoes, pearl onions and baby carrots for our fifth course. The beef cheeks were so tender, and no wonder, we later learned that the preparation involved three and a half hours at 180 degrees Celsius. This beautiful dinner was finished off with the most delicious mango mille-feuille for dessert.
To book your getaway at the JW Marriott Phuket Resort and Spa or to find out more about this fantastic holiday destination, click here.
Images courtesy of JW Marriott Phuket Resort and Spa.
About the Author – Shiori Cochrane
Shiori has been involved in the book and magazine publication and TV production industries for almost 15 years. Her articles are focused on travel, food and sustainability. When she is not writing or editing, she spends her time travelling with the Explore TV team, producing the popular travel series Explore TV on Nine. She lives in the beautiful hills of Western Australia with her husband and three boys.