Santhiya – A sublime confluence of Natural & Manmade Luxury

Luxury to me is not owning a lot of stuff. Luxury to me, is feeling unrushed

-Tim Ferriss

This quote was running around in our minds right from the beginning of our stay on this serene island.  Phuket has so many options to stay. With a myriad of hostels, homestays, hotels, resorts you can find the perfect accommodation for your budget and requirement. It is hard to chose one amongst so many. Almost everyone promotes their proximity to the sea and other attractions. For a week’s stay, we decided to split it in two different islands. With lots of research we finalised two accommodations, one in Phuket mainland and this one, on the island of Koh Yao Yai.

Koh Yai Yai :

90% of the people who asked us about our trip to Thailand were new to this name. Not suffocated by tourists yet, the island of Koh Yao Yai is covered by mountains and rain-forests.  Koh Yao Yai is just 20 mins by speed boat from Phuket. The island is abundant with wildlife, hidden beaches, and traditional fishing villages making the area an abode of nature. There is one main road and few side roads leading to houses in the village. We hired a bike to roam around the island. There are pretty souvenir shops, eating joints, one hospital, one school and one seven eleven (7-11) to the south of the island. The resort which we chose was to the south west of Koh Yao Yai.

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Bike ride to explore Koh Yao Yai

After many ifs and buts, since we usually always seek budget traveling options we finally decided to pamper ourselves to this amazing luxury stay nestled on the quiet island of Koh Yao Yai. The best part of this island was that it was close enough to Phuket mainland and far enough from the crowd.

Hidden in a serene cliff on the west coast of the island, Santhiya Resort is encircled with acres of tropical forest, with the backdrop of the sea. ‘Santhiya’ means natural beauty. The resort is defined by its golden teakwood structures of intricately carved woods. Each and every thing that you see in this resort is made of wood.

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Koh Yao Yai  and Santhiya Resort seen form the ferry

While checking in, we were served a refreshing welcome drink followed by which we were escorted to our room in a wooden vehicle. The rooms are built on the sides of the cliff and the resort runs these wooden cars up and down on regular intervals. It is a steep climb up to the rooms and unless you are an avid trekker and in good shape, these wooden cars are the best option to get you there. The ride in this unique wooden car was itself one of the most memorable part of the stay at Santhiya owing to the spectacular views that if offered while driving up to the cliff.

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Looking back at the ocean while climbing up to our room in this elegant wooden car

The rooms are built to luxuriate you in the best possible way. Right from the lobby to the balcony overlooking the ocean, the room does not fail to dazzle you. We fell in love with each and every small part of the room. The petite wooden house for the doorbell, the pretty adorable knobs of the drawer, the elegant dresser, the fine carving on almost every little thing in the room instantly attract your attention. The grandeur and finesse is visible on all fronts in this remarkable resort.

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Our wooden room at Santhiya

Santhiya has a swimming pool under a glittering waterfall which is surrounded by boat shaped wooden lounge chairs. It is hard to generate the will to get out of this pool once you are in. A dinner on the beach by the sea with dim candles and shimmering waves to give you company can be rejuvenating beyond imagination.

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Swimming pool & the cascade with the lounge chairs

The resort’s infinity pool with stunning views is one of its USP. Some villas also have their private pools.The showers near the infinity pool were perfectly aligned to the rustic Thai theme.

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Gazing at the Andaman in this infinity pool

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The wooden elephant shower near the infinity pool at Santhiya Resort

The breakfast options are huge and it is difficult to choose what all to eat at one time. The breakfast restaurant offers breathtaking views to start your day with a bash! Each element in the resort is so carefully thought of, that it does not fail to gain the viewer’s appreciation.

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Breakfast with such phenomenal views

Santhiya’s private pier is one of the best places in the resort to view the sunset, apart from your room’s balcony. In addition to admiring nature and its wonder, there are plenty of activities to do here. You can opt for Thai Boxing, Thai Cooking, kayaking & pedal boarding classes in the resort. For a rainy day, they also have a pretty library and a ravishing souvenir store.

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Santhiya’s Private Pier on a rainy day

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Library in Santhiya

We spent three amazing days at Santhiya and would recommend anyone looking for tranquility, luxury and proximity to nature to visit this lovely resort and stay here.  The stay at Santhiya was one of the most astounding part of our trip to Thailand. Read 13 Extraordinary Experiences that defined our Thailand Getaway.

Reaching there :

Santhiya Resort offers its transfer service directly from the airport or from any hotel in Phuket. With this, you will reach directly to the resort via speedboat on their private pier. With some extra effort and a little less money, you can hire a cab to go to the pier from your hotel /airport and catch a boat to Koh Yao Yai. From here (depends upon which pier you arrive at) you can get cabs from 200 baht onwards. The Laem Yai Pier is the closest to Santhiya Resort.

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Location of Koh Yao Yai near Phuket Island

10 experiences

The balcony of our room at Santhiya, overlooking the ocean

There are far better things ahead than any we leave behind

P.S. We live on a beautiful planet. Please go green & eco friendly.. Be a responsible traveller.

10 reasons to visit Thailand beyond Elephants & Massage
Phuket – a classic 4 days itinerary
13 Extraordinary Experiences that defined our Thailand Getaway!
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