BANGKOK, June 03, 2008
Its summertime and online hotel booking site Agoda Company says the living is easy in Southeast Asia with the release of its top 10 beach resorts. As the Northern Hemisphere warms towards summer, Agoda has recommended a number of resorts in the region for holidaymakers to cool down in style.
According to Agoda CEO Michael Kenny, "Islands such as Bali and Phuket are still extremely popular beach destinations for customers booking on our site. But we've also noticed a trend in customers booking hotels in lesser-known areas because accessibility is better and there are now luxury accommodation options. Destinations such as the Central Coast stretch of Vietnam from Danang to Hoi An and the unspoiled Southwestern shores of Thailand including Khao Lak are examples of places where customer interest has significantly increased."
Kenny added that the Southeast Asian sense for hospitality was another attractive feature to foreign visitors. "The friendly and laidback nature of the people in most Southeast Asia destinations is definitely one of the main attractions for tourists visiting these shores. It certainly complements a beach lifestyle."
Agoda's top 10 beach resorts in the region are listed as follows:
1. Centara Grand Beach Resort and Villas, Krabi, Thailand
Sitting majestically affront the private beach of Ao Nang in Pai Plong Bay against a backdrop of dramatic limestone cliffs, the Centara Grand Beach Resort offers luxury accommodation and a stunningly beautiful view. Guests can journey to the resort with relative ease now that the township of Krabi has a domestic airport, where they are picked up and whisked away by boat to the serene shores of Ao Nang.
2. Pandanus Hotel, Phan Thiet, Vietnam
Acknowledged as the most luxurious hotel in the Phan Thiet province, the Pandanus Hotel is also located on one of Vietnam's most attractive coastal stretches. Built inside a 10 hectare tropical garden, with its own private beach, the resort is within close proximity to the area's famed 'red' sand dunes and the canyon of Mui Ne. Friendly, service-oriented staff ensure guests are in want for nothing - and with an oceanic view like this on offer, exotic cocktail in hand, what could be better?
3. Sokha Beach Hotel, Sihanoukville, Cambodia
Poised on a peninsula that extends into the Gulf of Thailand, the Sihanoukville shore is a largely unknown treasure of Robinson Crusoe proportion. And Sokha Beach is its highlight. With such magnificent surrounds, a hotel need not go to too much effort, and yet the Sokha Beach Hotel embodies the warm hospitality of the Cambodian people and their rich culture.
4. Le Meridien Khao Lak Beach Resort & Spa, Khao Lak, Thailand
Overshadowed by nearby island neighbor and tourist giant, Phuket, the Khao Lak stretch of Thailand's Southwest mainland has managed to maintain a tranquil atmosphere and an unspoiled, awe-inspiring landscape. The Le Meridien Khao Lak Beach Resort & Spa doesn't disappoint in terms of location and service. Within an oar's reach of the stunningly famous Phang Nga bay and accessible by car from Phuket International Airport, Khao Lak is an excellent choice for a tropical beach sojourn.
5. Shangri-La Mactan Island Resort, Cebu, Philippines
Located within the province of Cebu on Mactan Island, this Shangri-La resort certainly lives up to its name. Guests will have panoramic views of the azure Visayan Sea and its cluster of remote islands. With state-of-the-art facilities and luxurious interiors, the high standards of service further enhance this beach resort in the Philippines.
6. Sanur Beach Hotel, Bali, Indonesia
Sanur beach is Bali's best-kept beach jewel. Quieter than the popular surfing beach of Kuta and other favorites such as Nusa Dua and Seminyak, this stretch of sand offers a glimpse into the Balinese fisher village lifestyle, as well as providing visitors with pristine bathing waters teeming with colorful fish.
7. The Empire Hotel and Country Club, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam
Built on a colossal 162-hectare landscape of tropical garden, the Empire Hotel takes the concept of luxury accommodation to an entire new level. It is impressive in every detail when it comes to service and facilities, but more importantly is located on a magnificent stretch of coastline.
8. Zeavola Hotel, Koh Phi Phi, Thailand
Phi Phi is a long island favorite among Thailand's frequent beach travelers. Its beaches are simply idyllic with their powdery sand shores and clear waters. The boutique Zeavola hotel offers Phi Phi paradise with luxury amenities disguised by a rural feel and charm. A unique accommodation option positioned in front of a prime, serene stretch of beach, couples can relish in the resort's privacy and lush natural environment.
9. Berjaya Redang Beach Resort, Terangganu, Malaysia
Malaysia is often surpassed by the highly publicized tourist destinations of Indonesia and Thailand for its natural offerings, despite it being rich in beauty. Redang Island is one such example and the Berjaya Redang Beach Resort offers guests private access to one of the country's finest beaches - one accentuated by vibrant corals and tropical fish.
10. Furama Resort, Danang, Vietnam
The largely undeveloped coastal stretch which stretches 25km from Hoi An to Danang on Vietnam's Central Coast, is one of the countries most magnificent. Known in English as China Beach, the Furama Resort was the first luxury hotel to be built along this unspoiled coast. The design blends Vietnamese style with tropical architecture and the staff are friendly and helpful.
For more information regarding Agoda, please access its website at www.agoda.com or contact the Agoda Team via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.