27 February 2013

Six Senses, Thailand

Who'd have thought that there was somewhere in the world that would make Cocoa Island look second rate?

If we're honest, our opinion of Cocoa Island did deteriorate a little as the days went on - too many niggles that just weren't right in a hotel of that stature.  For the money they charge you expect more - at least not to have an outside sunbathing area that was in full shade from 12.30pm onwards.  But I don't want to dwell on it, we had a great time.

But today we arrived in Six Senses - a hilltop hotel reserve on Yao Noi, a little island off the coast of Phuket.  We were greeted at the airport by the rep and whisked off by car then boat - about an hour and 15 to get here.

From the approach in the boat you could see how stunning and secluded the place was. It's surrounded by lush vegetation and plants that you can tell the gardeners must spend hours maintaining.

We were driven by buggy up to our villa; number 28 (there are 60 in total).  What can I say?  I think I'm going to leave the photos to do most of the talking.

We were taken on a buggy tour around the reserve.

Alex's holiday was made when he discovered that the hotel has 30 flavours of complimentary homemade icecream (along with a lot of other baked goodies)

Despite the urge to just lay back and do nothing but savour the beauty and serenity of Six Senses, it would be a shame not to get involved in the numerous activities that the hotel has to offer. Today we had a 1 hour Thai massage lesson in the spa!

Here he is

The girls who were teaching us were so lovely and informative and we really came away feeling like we'd learned something as well as feeling very relaxed after being massage guinea pigs for each other.  The spa itself is fantastic too.

Over the next 3 days here we have booked a cocktail making class (naturally), a Thai cookery session and a private meditation class.  We've both talked of our interest in learning how to meditate - whether we'll be able to do it or not is another matter!

After our Thai massage class we went over to the Living Room bar for to see some Thai dancing

....and - deep intake of breath - try the cocktails!

We are back in the game! They were wonderful. I tried the Phuket Mai Tai which was delicious, bursting with flavour and served in a very cool, wonky glass.

Alex went for One Of Those - Baileys, Creme de Banana and butterscotch.  Also awesome.  Nibbles are always a bonus and we weren't disappointed with the dried banana crisps. I'm not sure if they are healthier than normal crisps or not but they were polished off within a few minutes.

So now we are back in the room.  I'm enjoying a glass of the local wine before we head out for our first dinner at Six Senses.

The hotel also show movies on a large screen on the beach from 9.30pm and serve homemade popcorn.  Seriously, can this place get any better?

I will let you know tomorrow.


26 February 2013

Our last day at Cocoa

This morning the sun rose on our final day at Cocoa Island.  As stunning as the place is, we are looking forward to moving on to pastures new - Yao Noi and Phuket, Thailand.  We will be flying back to Singapore at 11.30pm to get a connecting flight onto Phuket airport.  Then part deux begins!

Holiday life has continued as normal: beautifully lazy.

Here's another hand-on-hip picture of me (I really need a new pose...)

The cocktail situation here has continued to deteriorate.  I ordered a Ginger Mojito again today and not only did it not taste remotely of ginger, it didn't really taste of mojito.  Just fizzy water and lemon.  Come on Thailand; I'm relying on you to kick ass on the cocktail front!  

But I did have this lovely dessert that was worth sharing - banana cheesecake with tropical fruit and lemon sorbet, beautifully presented and delicious

Yesterday afternoon we decided to call the dog at home.  It's amazing what you can train dogs to do!  Here he is, mid-Skype.  

He's having a lovely time with his Grandad so no need to worry there - thanks Ian!

There was a full moon on our last night.  It really looked something special, shining above our hut.

Today has been pretty similar to yesterday - albeit with a bit of kayaking thrown in for good measure - and we are ready to go now.  Alex and I have a tendency to get a little bored when we stay in one place for too long, especially when we feel a bit trapped inside the resort.  But it has been perfectly timed so mild boredom has hit just as we're about to move on.  

So this evening, the sun will set on our visit to the beautiful Cocoa Island.  
See you in Thailand!


24 February 2013

A stingray, a heron called Michael and even more fish

I'll be honest and tell you now that this isn't going to be one of my more exciting blog entries.  Sorry about that.

Today was a very lazy day.  Being on a little island which is a good 45 minute speedboat ride from anywhere means that unless you want to get on boats every day - and having a husband prone to sea-sickness makes this unappealing - your activity choices tend to be a) sunbathe/sleep, b) eat, c) swim, d) gym, e) visit the spa.

All of the above were achieved today.

Here I am, raring to go

Dress from Wildfox Couture

I know I haven't posted many food pictures from the lovely restaurant here.  Even though the food is really good, the pictures haven't inspired me to post them. But this was a lovely Lobster, Mango and Avocado salad I had today that I decided was worth a look.

Healthy and delicious!

While I'm at it, here was the Coconut Panna Cotta with Raspberry Sorbet which wasn't so healthy but was equally as delicious!

Despite all I have written in my past posts, this place is not 100% perfect. Oh no. I've been rather disappointed with the quality of the cocktails and considering the name of my blog I feel I should bring this to your attention.  It's a sad story.

This is a Blueberry Mojito

Or is it just a measure of rum, blueberry cordial, soda water and a bit of mint?  I think you can guess.  But I refuse to be deterred and will continue to work through the cocktail menu to find one they do well!  It could happen!

This is Michael the resident heron.

One of the guys that works here told us that you can bring a heron up to be 'like a dog'.  I'm not quite sure what he meant and I'm not planning on testing it out but if you fancy giving it a go, send me a tweet and let me know what happens.

This afternoon I visited the spa for a treatment.  As I am a big lover of foot massages I decided to go for my first ever session of reflexology. The spa here is beautiful and as relaxing as you would expect. The treatment itself was quite an experience - I loved it but have to say it was 80% pleasure and 20% intense pain. Is pain supposed to happen in a spa? I suppose he had to get those pressure points and I came out feeling great so I'm not complaining.

After a half hour gym session (are you impressed?) we went to the weekly hotel Feed the Fish event!  We walked to the end of the pier, were given some small chunks of fish (they are cannibals) and fed the little critters.

On the walk back, we noticed our first stingray, sat in the shallow waters.

I've been quite wary of them whilst in the water here (I always wear my strap-on sandals having been bitten by something nasty in the past) but despite what a lot of people believe after what happened to Steve Irwin, they are really docile creatures, bless 'em.  You really don't want to step on one though!

So this was our day.  Tomorrow is likely to be as lazy too so I may give the blog a day off.  But do not fear! On Wednesday we're moving our holiday on to Thailand - I cannot wait to hit the markets and grace these pages with more wonderful things...