Tag Archive: Marriott



Yes. It’s a wrap. All of 8 days and 7 nights. As someone in our group said, “Sri Lanka was a revelation”. There were some mishaps, some missed sites, some meals not making the grade, a few frustrations, but this trip was just marvelous. Sri Lanka has much to offer. I do not think they’re there yet in terms of promoting their country best but it should get a lot of attention soon. Hopefully too, tourism promotion does not adversely affect the character of the people here — smiling, helpful, charming.

We feel this trip deserves a repeat. I enjoyed the safari but won’t do it again unless my family is going with me. (Birdwatchers would!) Instead, I’d return to Nuwara Eliya in time for tea harvest, do a bit of hiking in Ella to view the Nine Arches Bridge and Adam’s Peak, climb Sigiraya Rock, visit the Royal Botanical Garden in Kandy’s Peradeniya (we missed it as we lacked time), take another scenic train ride, spend more time in Weligama and stay in the same Jetwing and Marriott Hotels we booked including those in Negombo and Kaduruketha! I’d also enjoy the same hotel breakfasts and dinners there and make sure to do better for our midday nourishment. 💕💕💕

Thank you, Sri Lanka.

(Just click on the links)

Dambulla Rock Caves

A Sri Lankan Safari

Ancient and Sacred Cities

A Scenic Train Ride

Budurugawala Temple

Stilt Fishermen of Sri Lanka

The Ramparts of Galle

Last Day in Colombo

Travel buddies, young & old

Different folks, Different strokes

Foodies, shoppers, culture vultures

Tell me, do we hold a future?

Morning strolls, cocktails by dusk

Chatting each day’s highlights in a flash

Oh what a journey with these peeps

As we discover food, places & pet peeves.


Whenever I thought of Phuket back then, I thought it was just a single destination area where one chooses which beach corner to claim for a getaway. I didn’t realize that Phuket is Thailand’s largest island and that there is a variety of beach resorts to choose from. Neither did I know that it is the jump-off point for smaller islands like Phi Phi Don, Phi Phi Lei, James Bond Island, Maya Beach, Koh Lanta, Monkey Island, etc.

 

 

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Marriott Vacation Club in Mai Khao, Phuket.

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JW Marriott Hotel and Spa

 

 

We stayed in Marriott Vacation Club in Mai Khao Beach which is near the airport. It is nearly an hour away from where the action is (Patong Beach, Karon Beach, Kata Beach, NaiYang Beach, etc) but we don’t mind as you have everything you need in this more quiet corner of the island. Perhaps not so for the party crowd and the shoppers, but we’re neither so the “remoteness” is perfect for us. Besides, there’s a free shuttle to the sister-hotel (JW Marriott Phuket Club) where one can enjoy charming sunset views. For retail therapy and other dining outlets, just a stroll away is the Turtle Village. We highly recommend the Coffee Club here not just for the coffee and desserts, but also for their Pad Thai, Thai Prawn Rice and Curry Dishes. We went there for 2 consecutive dinners. And guess what, we ordered nearly the same dishes.

 

Check out these links:

 

Holy Cow, We’re in Mai Khao

 

 

Oh, So ChiChi in Ko Phi Phi

 

 

Sunsets In Phuket

 

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Prawn Rice. Ohhhhh such goodness!

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Lunch was in this place with this view in Phi Phi Don.

 

 

We devoted an entire day visiting some islands on a speedboat. Booked the tour online via AsiaWeb. No hassles. They picked us up from our hotel, brought us to the Royal Phuket Marina, enjoyed unlimited drinks and fruits on the boat, had an authentic Thai lunch in Phi Phi Don, snorkeled and enjoyed the islands. Some may still have the energy to shop and party later that night, but not us. After a good dinner at Turtle Village, we just wanted to crawl into our beds.

 

 

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Snorkelers Haven

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Just another beach.

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AsiaWeb bundled up the speedboat tour with a choice of airport transfers, or a city tour or a night with the ladyboys. We chose the city tour where we had the van & driver all to ourselves visiting temples, the old part of town and about 4 beach areas. The beach resorts especially Patong Beach underwhelmed us. Overhyped, if you ask me. But maybe I’m saying this because I’m extremely biased in favor of our Boracay (yes, despite the rowdy crowd and the trash), the islands of El Nido and other parts of Visayas. But I love how the Thais do this tourism business nearly seamlessly.

 

 

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In the end, we simply breezed through the beaches. Declaring ourselves beach-fatigued, we skipped the stroll on the sandy shores and only managed one temple visit and a drive around the old town. No need to get sand between our toes. We had enough of that when we did the islands. As for shopping, we were just interested in food items! Can you blame us?

 

 

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Monday delights. Left Manila at noon via Thai Airways, made a brief stop in Bangkok, then flew onwards to Phuket. It’s the biggest island in Thailand and we found our retreat here in Mai Khao. The beach resort is blessedly isolated and away from the tourist crowd. Very much self-contained with an option to do some retail therapy in the nearby TurtleVillage. But who wants to get out? A 2-room villa with its own plunge pool tempts you to stay in. In fact, we opted to dine in and used the well-appointed kitchen to cook our pasta pomodoro dinner to go with a bottle of good shiraz. L.U.X.U.R.Y. Pure luxury. This is the life! Happiness 🙂

 

 

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JW Marriott Phuket

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It is tempting to just stay IN in JW Marriott Phuket Resort and Spa

 

 

In the end, we decided to skip the shiraz. It can wait till tomorrow. We turned in early to prep for a whole day of activities tomorrow. The stroll around the lovely resort hotel can wait too….. and so with a dip in the plunge pool. It could have been perfect. Four friends around the pool, each holding a glass of wine, chatting like there’s no tomorrow, while keeping their heads dry and the rest soaking in the pool. Holy cow! We must be getting old. All we wanted to do after dinner is to climb into our heavenly beds.

 

 

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One of 2 villa bedrooms in Marriott Vacation Club in Mai Khao, Phuket.

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That’s the plunge pool right outside the room in Marriott Vacation Club

 

 

This is NOT an advert. But MARRIOTT VACATION CLUB in Mai Khao, Phuket is a lovely place to stay in. The 2 bedroom villa with a well-appointed kitchen is a sanctuary for weary bodies and tired souls. The plunge pool is a bonus. Easily, the villa can accommodate 6 pax. Maybe even 8 pax. Best for families or good friends. You can even choose to stay in, buy your supplies from the nearby Turtle Village, cook and dine in. Tonight, that’s exactly what we did. Tomorrow and days after, we’d be in serious search for Pad Thai and some curries. 🙂

 

 

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Who’s cooking dinner tonight?

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Towel elephant on my dining table!

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The Living Room. Marriott Vacation Club. Mai Khao, Phuket.