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You know you’ve been living in paradise too long when you start getting picky about which resorts to stay at. But if you’re one of those people, let me tell you about the TwinPalms in Phuket.

Before I get into the details, I would like to point out that Thailand is not just a backpacker destination full of $5 per night dirty bungalows. This country is also home to some of the best hotels in the world. Take the Mandarin Oritental in Bangkok or the Rayavadee in Krabi, Thailand has countless award winning venues for your next holiday in the sun.

Seriously, here in Thailand, we take vacationing to a whole new level. Phrases such as “Would you like another cold towel, miss?” or “Please, allow me to organize a dinner transportation itinerary and then send it to your room.” become all too common. These expectations are not just luxury, they’re necessity. Talk about spoiled.

Now back to the hotel at hand. When it comes to choosing a place to stay, sometimes it’s hard to find the perfect balance between relaxation and fun. Personally, I prefer small hotels. I find the intimacy provided by such places to be more appealing than being lost in the crowds of a huge resort. However, when it comes to small hotels, sometimes one must sacrifice relaxation for fun. There simply isn’t space for both.

Luckily for us, the TwinPalms has managed to incorporate both relaxation and entertainment in their “small luxury hotel” on Surin Beach, Phuket. The thing about TwinPalms is that it is located just a five minute walk from the beach. Although this may sound unappealing, they make up for the lack of beach view by providing poolside rooms, suites with private pools and views of the jungle filled hills.

The wonderful thing about being located just off the beach is that TwinPalms also owns the beach front property that is located next to it. This results in both a relaxing jungle escape and an energizing beach resort, coming together in the form of one small hotel.

At the beach, TwinPalms owns a series of beach bars, the biggest being Catch Beach Club and Bimi Beach Club. These bars provide food, drinks, music and fun. The afternoon can be filled with lounging in the cabana’s, drinking rose at the bar, swimming in the ocean, playing volleyball or eating at the buffet beach grill. As the sun sets, the clubs fill with high quality DJ’s and various fire and dance performers. The TwinPalms has literally created that beachfront party atmosphere you only see in the movies. The best part is, it’s nothing like a Full Moon Party. The vibe on Surin beach integrates the layout and services of a luxury hotel and the chilled out vibe that the beach has to offer. No, you won’t be drinking from plastic buckets.

Generally, if you’re at a small hotel that’s also providing a party, you really can’t escape the party. Whether it be music blasting all night, noisy late night swimmers, or a never ending flow of people talking far too loud, a party resort is far from relaxing. This is where the TwinPalms is different. You walk away from the beach, down a small path and about five minutes later you’ve arrived at the hotel. It’s is a whole new world.

You will arrive at the lobby and hear nothing but the chirping of birds and the greetings from hotel staff. I know, birds chirping sounds cheesy, but it’s true. You would never guess what is happening down at the beach. The hotel itself feels like you’re in a constant state of spa level relaxation. Whether it be the pools, the restaurants or the rooms, I can assure you that TwinPalms is nothing but calm.

It’s this perfect balance between excitement and down time that I love about this hotel. The TwinPalms has managed to incorporate two very different vacation lifestyles together, in a way that is both tasteful and intimate. At this point, I’m just waiting until I can go back.

1.5 2 5.1 5.5 5 6.2JPG 6.5 7 9 10photo 2 photo 1Top: Jonathan Saunders for Jaspal – Bikini: H&M – Phone Case: Mara Hoffman

Bag: Tilley Endurables – Glasses: Celine – Necklace: H&M