Kids are in their element at the new Holiday Inn Vana Nava Hua Hin, but it’s a dream for couples too
WITH SUMMER vacations being planned, the seaside is a favourite destination, and one of the top new choices for a family stay by the shore is the water-park resort Holiday Inn Vana Nava Hua Hin.
All 300 rooms and suites in the tallest building in town share an ocean view from private balconies, complete with glorious sunrises to start the days perfectly.
At last month’s glittering grand opening, centred on the resort’s lofty Vana Nava Sky Deck, more than 400 guests, including many celebrities, were treated to live entertainment and fireworks.
The Vana Nava Sky Deck, 110 metres up, has a glass floor.
On any day or evening, though, the 27th-floor Sky Deck with its 360-degree views is stunning. Guests are required to demonstrate a little bravery, however. The floor is clear glass, so you’re looking straight down at the ground 110 metres below.
Bangkok-based consultant Ashley Sutton, who’s designed some of Asia’s most eye-popping bars, including Maggie Choo’s and Iron Fairies in Bangkok and Ophelia in Hong Kong, conceived this breezy, thrilling experience in Hua Hin.
The lofty double infinite pool.
One storey down – that’s still way up on Floor 26 – are two infinity pools with their own jarring front-row seats for the sweeping panorama of the Gulf of Thailand. This is another fantastic spot to greet the morning sun, but also ideal for all-day lounging as well as family fun – there’s a separate pool for kids, with a slide.
Right next door, opposite the gulf, is the Vana Nava Water Jungle Park, filled with adventure rides and huge slides that guests can enjoy for free as many times as they like. Non-guests pay a high price for admission, but everyone staying at the resort has unlimited access.
Youngsters will take full advantage of their unlimited access to Vana Nava Water Jungle Park.
The hotel – though fully equipped for top-notch hospitality, meetings and other large events (there are five function rooms and a large ballroom with cutting-edge technology) – is not actually on the beach, so the water jungle is a major draw.
The resort is suitable for any type of stay, from fun-filled “stay-cations” to couples’ getaways, family holidays and special business events. Its owners expect the Holiday Inn Vana Nava Hua Hin to become an iconic destination.
Every room has free Wi-Fi, and there’s a fitness centre open round the clock.
The Kid Suites are the stuff dreams are made of.
For children age 12 and under, the entire Holiday Inn chain has a “Kids Eat and Stay Free” deal.
Guests are greeted on arrival by a realistic likeness of the resort’s marine emblem, a Bryde’s whale, one of the more common cetaceans in the Gulf.
The subterranean theme continues throughout the hotel, including in a series of inter-connecting rooms painted bright sea blue and vivid coral orange. The bathrooms in all guestrooms have wall tiles designed to resemble fish scales.
The Kid Suites are set up like submarines, decked out with bunk beds and play areas. Elsewhere in the hotel is the Bryde Kids’ Club for more fun. It has rides, toys, games and digital media, and alert staff members keep an eye on the action.
The parents, meanwhile, are apt to be relaxing and unwinding at the Tea Tree Spa, where trained therapists use wholly natural products to rejuvenate muscles and ease away the tensions of the urban hustle and bustle.
The restaurant Plamong serves seafood all day.
There’s great dining all day long at the resort restaurant Plamong, which is festooned with netting and traps to evoke Hua Hin’s past as a fishing village.
Seafood is in the greatest demand, of course, but a wide range of international dishes is also on offer. Everything we sampled was quite flavourful, though there was room for improvement.
AT A GLANCE
Highs: Unlimited access to Vana Nava Water Jungle Park. The hotel is stylish and well designed.
Lows: Amid plentiful safety measures, there is no first-aid room. And staff at this new hotel needs more training.
Find it: 129/129 Petchakasem Road, Nong Gar, Hua Hin, Prachuab Kiri Khan
Call it: (032) 809 999
Browse it: www.HolidayInnResorts.com