When you think of paradise in lush mountains of Thailand, Panviman is exactly where you’re thinking of. It’s about an hour drive from the Chiang Mai airport, despite only being about 23 miles but it is so worth a visit if you’re staying in Chiang Mai. Just as you round the last corner on the drive you up, these white pillars of paradise erupt out of the surrounding hills and you’re left with this sprawling view of Panviman Resort. It’s so large, in fact, that hotel staff drive around the property all day in golf carts to pick up walking guests who might want a lift. I felt like royalty staying in this little slice of heaven and the outdoor Jacuzzi tub didn’t hurt either.
I was lucky enough to stay in one of the Jacuzzi Villas and I have to say, it was so roomy and generous I felt like I was in my own little paradise apartment. The beds faced double glass doors that opened up onto a balcony surrounded by lush greenery. I woke up to soft golden light flitting through the leaves and curtains and it was the most serene sleep I got during my entire time in Thailand. Panviman provides you with everything you need for a comfortable stay. Even essentials, like a toothbrush, that you might have forgotten (or that might have been overtaken by ants in Pai – like mine). I spent a good many hours soaking up the waning sunlight in the open air Jacuzzi tub, watching the last few rays of golden light slip behind the hills.
BONUS: The views from any of the rooms are amazing, but if you can get a room that faces the pool… you’re in for the best view in the house.
Panviman offers several options when it comes to dining. There is a full service breakfast every morning (complimentary!) with Western and traditional Thai fare. I pretty much tried some of everything. There’s all kind of breakfast meats, eggs and pancakes to order, cereal, fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh juices, there’s literally something for everyone. There is also a little cafe in the lobby that serves coffee and some pretty scrumptious cakes and desserts.
But let’s get down to brass tacks here. The Panorama Restaurant and room service is really where it’s at. It’s not only a beautiful spot (with obvious Panoramic views of the property and surrounding mountains) to have a nice dinner but they also provide killer room service.
TIP: I had this amazing SOUP that I for the life of me cannot remember what it’s called. I remember it was under the curry section, I think, and it was something to the effect of “chicken khao soi soup”. Something similar to that. It was the BEST FREAKING THING I HAVE EVER EATEN. No, I don’t have a picture of it because I devoured it while it was still practically boiling. And I have made it my mission to find somewhere in the states that serves it. Because let’s face it, it just isn’t realistic to go all the way to Chiang Mai for soup. Or is it…
The Grounds and Pool
Like I said before, the property is massive. But definitely worth walking through. Almost every corner of the property offers astounding views and the property itself is pretty stunning to look at. There are two pools, a fitness center (semi-outdoors – super cool), a meditation cave, mini golf, yoga, archery, giant outdoor chess (HP style), and a beautiful spa! The lower pool is the perfect spot to relax, sunbathe, go for a dip, order a drink, rinse, repeat. Unfortunately, due to re-herniating a disc the DAY before a two month stint in Thailand I declined (regretfully, woefully, hesitantly, through gritted teeth) a massage. But if you get a chance to stay at this hidden resort in the mountains, please – visit the spa and tell me how it was. So gutted I didn’t get a chance to try their services.
TIP: If you plan on having a pool day, go claim a lounge chair in the morning before breakfast. On nice days they can be a hot commodity!
BOOK THIS HOTEL IF
You are looking for a paradise-esque escape that feels like stepping into another world. If you want to experience Thailand and Thai culture away from the hustle and bustle of the crowded big cities. Panviman Resort is best suited for couples, honeymoons, families, and travel with close friends.
Kayti VS the World was invited as a guest of Panviman Resort however, as always, all opinions are my own
*based on current prices and exchange rates