When you are sitting at home daydreaming of a tropical vacation, The Racha is everything and more that you are dreaming of. A truly spectacular 5* resort, located on arguably the most beautiful island in Thailand, Koh Racha.
With the check-in lounge on the mainland, you then arrive by boat at what is undoubtedly paradise. This is certainly an escape to get away from it all. The beach has the whitest sand you have ever seen. The same goes for the blue of the water. This is paradise before you even see the hotel, which is equally as impressive. We mean it when we say it, we felt like a James Bond villain arriving at his secret lair.
The buildings are a striking white colour scheme and many resemble ancient Mediterranean villas but with a modern twist. The Racha is extravagant in every possible way and never ceases to surprise. I mean where else lets you choose the scent of your amenities and has sparkling wine at the breakfast buffet?!
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The Racha – Koh Racha Yai – Thailand
The Racha occupies the entire beachfront of beautiful Batok Bay on Racha Yai island. Possibly the most beautiful and pristine island in the Andaman Sea. The Racha has a speedboat transfer option to the island, however, their co-ordinates are provided if bringing your own superyacht or smaller vessel.
There’s no doubt about it, The Racha is one incredibly lavish resort and offers true luxury to guests in the most picturesque setting you can imagine. Sprawling across 20 acres of lush gardens and tropical plants, the resort seemingly blends into the nature around it. Offering 85 villas of eight different categories, there are plenty of accommodation options available. The most opulent of all being the five-story Lighthouse that looks over the resort and out to sea. All rooms at The Racha are luxuriously appointed and many offer there own private pools, even the most discerning travelling is sure to be satisfied here!
Inside Our Spa Pool Suite
Walking up to our villa we couldn’t help but ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ at the stunning design of the buildings, and the smell of paradise filled the air. Before reaching the front door we noticed the spacious private terrace, shaded by the leaves of palms and frangipani. Yep we could already tell we were in for a treat here at The Racha. At 72sqm exluding the pool and terrace, it is a very spacious villa!
Upon stepping inside you are immediately wowed by the view through the floor to ceiling windows of your own private spa pool. A large sofa/day bed elegantly blends in with the design of the building. The perfect place to kick back after enjoying the day relaxing. This state-of-the-art living room is equipped with some high tech extravagance.
Firstly the multimedia theatre system is top of the range, featuring Bose surround sound speakers and a 60″ flat-screen tv with a range of pre-loaded movies. Ollie was thrilled to see that a few Disney movies were on offer, so of course, we watched one with him in our downtime. We loved playing the provided music CD as a playlist of our stay, consistently filling the villa with happy tropical tunes.
There is even a lighting control panel offering mood lighting selections at the touch of a button, whilst the blinds are fully motorised. Additionally, the air-conditioning unit is dual-zone, with the lounge and bedroom room having their own control units.
The minibar was equally as extravagant with a Jura coffee machine for your morning brews, yep this means you can even have frothed milk! Us being the big coffee lovers we are, loved that this was on offer.
The bedroom was equally as nice with the King Size bed seemingly floating above a stone base. The bed was heavenly to sleep in and you could feel the quality of the linens. Large glass double doors lead directly to the terrace and flooded the room with natural sunlight.
At the press of a button, the blinds could be lowered. Then we found another remote. Pressing ‘up’ on it, suddenly the desk in the centre of the room popped open and a 42″ flat screen tv popped out! On the bedside table was a Bose iPod speaker system, ensuring you are never without music. Although the living room system could easily be heard from miles away if you cranked the volume!
The ensuite is just as decadent and just as drenched in sunlight as the bedroom. There’s a glass wall and door leading to the pool on one side, a window and door looking out to a garden courtyard, and above the standalone bathtub is a large window looking through the bedroom out to the terrace. Of course, there is also a large rainfall shower off to the side. This is all topped off by luxurious eco-friendly amenities, of which you chose the scent at check-in!
With entry from either the bathroom or living room, the pool area is definitely the standout feature of the villa. Roofed overhead this ozonated 14m² pool feels like a secret underground lair, but with tropical greenery beside it. To add the luxury touch, that lighting control inside allows you to activate dramatic led strip lighting around the pool. We told you this place was James Bond like! Of course, it’s not a tropical resort without an outdoor rain shower as well!
The Racha Experience
Chalong Lounge & Checking In
Before you even get to The Racha you check-in at the Chalong Lounge on mainland Phuket. The lounge itself is just moments from the pier and is a modern retreat to freshen up before your speedboat transfer. It is full of comfortable sofa chairs and the tables have charging stations with reading material (there is also free Wi-Fi). In the corner, you’ll find various complimentary snacks and beverages (including a coffee machine). We were starving before arriving here and the snacks provided were able to suffice for our lunch.
As part of the check in they provide you with an array of scents. You are then able to choose which scent you would like your amenities to be. The staff then communicate with the resort and ensure your room is prepared accordingly. We chose Jasmine which really set the tropical tone of our trip and smelt divine.
When your boat transfer is ready, all passengers will be taken a 1-minute drive down the pier to the awaiting speedboat. The speedboat is a large and modern speedboat capable of fitting quite a number of people. The transfer usually takes between 30-40 minutes depending on sea conditions. Our ride was all smooth sailing and very comfortable. Ollie being a lover of boats was in paradise already. If you happen to suffer seasickness the staff in the lounge can provide herbal remedies to combat it.
It wouldn’t be a tropical getaway without swimming, and at The Racha, we were spoilt for choice. Of course, we had our own private pool in our suite which was next level amazing. Then situated at the front of the resort up a flight of stairs is the (adults only) infinity pool, with a money can’t buy view over Batok Bay. In the middle of the resort is the aptly named garden pool which is suited more to the families. Ollie loved getting soaked by the pretend waterfall feature. The final pool is the Club Del Mar pool, a beach bar with underwater music and hydro jets!
If pools aren’t your thing then the beaches are sure to take your fancy. Batok Bay at the front of the resort is the perfect temperature, ell sheltered and extremely calm. There are also several bays within walking distance that will quite often be empty, yet are just as idyllic with crystal clear blue water.
Adventure the Island
If you feel like getting the blood pumping, the Racha Water Sports Center provides a huge range of complimentary equipment rental. This includes mountain bikes, snorkelling gear (masks/fins), tennis gear, body boards, kayaks and stand up paddle boards! They even regularly host guided island walks or jogs. The Racha resort boasts its own tennis court as well as pool table and well fitted out fitness gym. There is no excuse for sitting by the pool all day long!
For an epic view of the island, there is a short 30-45 minute hike up the hill beside the resort. The staff can help point you in the right direction.
Being on an island, being a sustainable resort is incredibly important to The Racha. They have their own waste-water and laundry treatment systems, a bio-gas and charcoal station, a hydroponic farm, a solar-diesel hybrid station, reservoirs and more!
The half acre 250 kWp Solar-Diesel Hybrid Station produces up to 50% of the resort’s daily electricity requirements, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 24% or 1,500 Kg per day. At the Racha’s Bio-Fuel station, food waste is converted into Bio-Gas. This, in turn, is used for cooking in the Staff Canteen. Wood and vegetation scraps are converted into charcoal briquettes at our Charcoal Station. These are used in the BBQ grill at the Sunset Beach Restaurant daily.
Rainwater is collected, recycled and treated at The Racha’s own reservoirs on the island for use throughout the resort. Plastics, glass, paper are recycled throughout the resort. The resort’s drinking bottles are eco-friendly, reusable glass. They are sterilized and bottled in our Glass Water Bottling Facility.
The coconut tree, the symbol of The Racha, takes pride of place at the resort. Many of the trees you see are the island’s original inhabitants. Villas were built around them. For every coconut tree that was cut, two were planted to replace it.
There are several other super cool initiatives in place at The Racha and it is awesome to hear about how they manage to implement them.
There are various restaurants on-site at The Racha with various specialties. The Sunset Restaurant overlooks the ocean and features a heavenly menu of both Thai and Western Food. The Fire Grill is more suited to Mediterranean fare and features a woodfired oven for authentic pizzas. We ate dinner at The Sunset Restaurant and being in Thailand, ordered a couple of Thai curries, both were spot on and went down a treat.
Buffet Breakfast @ Earth Cafe
The Earth Cafe is on the ground level and you can choose to take breakfast inside or out on the grass. We chose the grassed area as it gave an amazing view of the ocean. From hearty to healthy there is something for everybody here. What’s more, the quality of everything was fantastic, even the honey was dripping straight off the honeycomb.
It was hard to believe we were on an island. You could order eggs any way you want them from an egg menu, and there was even free flow sparkling wine, it doesn’t get much more luxurious than that! Surprisingly Ollie’s favourite food was all of the delicious dumplings! It may be hard to ever feed him cereal again!
How Kid-Friendly is The Racha?
The entire resort is ultra-clean and modern, meaning you can be more at ease with your little ones. There is no need to pack a cot or high chair as these are provided free of charge. If bottle feeding, all rooms have kettles and fridges. Babysitting can be arranged at a charge upon request. Additionally, the speedboat transfer was equipped with baby-sized lifejackets.
When dining there is children’s cups plates and cutlery available. There are kids menus with plenty of variety that will suit smaller children taste buds. At the breakfast buffet, there was a section where all of the children’s utensils etc were so they felt like adults grabbing their own plates.
The Racha is a haven for children. With world-class swimming and snorkelling on your doorstep they will be entertained for hours! With loads of complimentary equipment rentals, they will be able to kayak, mountain bike and even paddle board. Then there are the tennis and basketball courts for them to blow off steam. The resort also hosts activities and workshops such as batik and glass-painting.
The garden pool is best for children and is nicely shaded from several palm trees. There is an adults-only pool on the property so generally only families will be around this pool. The beachfront is also ideal for little children as it is very sheltered and gradual in its changes of depth.
Book Your Stay at The Racha
Address: Batok Bay, Koh Racha Yai, Phuket, Thailand
Luxury deluxe villas start at approximately AUD $400 per night. Enquire now!
Have any questions or comments about our stay at The Racha? Let us know in the comments below…
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Disclosure: This post was created in partnership with The Racha. As always, all the reviews and opinions expressed are based on our personal view and experience.