Birds Nests, Seedpods, thatched hobbit holes. Phuket resort Keemala’s pool villas are incredible architectural anomalies and an intriguing mix of history and myth, loosely based on ancient tribe dwellings. Nestled in Glorious greenery- a short drive from Patong beach-the resorts holistic philosophy proposes healing spa rituals, healthful home grown cuisine and an eco-friendly ethos.

Need to know
38 pool villas
12 noon. Earliest check-in 2pm

Double rooms from £502.45 excluding tax at 18.7 percent

More Details

Rates usually include breakfast, a villa host, personalized fitness program me, daily fruit plate, minibar items and in-house activities. A three-night minimum stay is required during peak times (24 December-10 January). Sorry guys!

Your villa host is on hand to help with spa, restaurant and excursion bookings, and they’ll unpack your bags and deliver room service personally. If you’re particularly fond of your villas decor you can pick up home wares in the hotels boutique. Take a minute to peek at the mosaic by local artist Surachai Sripaiboon in the welcome pavilion, it tells the history of the four clans of Keemala; ask nicely and staff will regale you with the full saga.

At the hotel

Spa and fitness centre, hourly shuttle to Kamala beach, wine cellar, library, boutique, free WiFi throughout. In rooms: private pool, flatscreen TV, iPod dock, traditional coffee-grinder and beans from Chiang Rai (Nespresso coffee machines available on request), kettle with a selection of local teas, free minibar and bottled water, and Siam Botanicals bath products.

At the hotel

Spa and fitness centre, hourly shuttle to Kamala beach, wine cellar, library, boutique, free WiFi throughout. In rooms: private pool, flatscreen TV, iPod dock, traditional coffee-grinder and beans from Chiang Rai (Nespresso coffee machines available on request), kettle with a selection of local teas, free minibar and bottled water, and Siam Botanicals bath products.

Our favourite rooms

Each villa is ingeniously designed; but if hard-pressed, we’d pick the Bird’s Nest Villas. This cocoon of woven wood has a glass wall overlooking the rainforest, mountains and Andaman Sea. Scope out the scenery curled up in your four-poster, while submerged in your alfresco bath tub or from the edge of the private lap pool. The Tent Pool Villas – canvas-covered hideaways each set on a rocky outcrop, with sea and forest views – are also rather dreamy.


Close to the main hotel pavilions there’s a sparkling, freeform pool and Jacuzzi with sunloungers by the side. Surrounded by greenery and nestled up to the lagoon that wends through the resort, it’s a palliative for on-the-go minds.


Set in thatched huts among the trees, Mala spa’s eight treatment pods (four with a sauna and steam room) are like a small village. Siam Botanicals, Voya and Spa Ritual products are used in healing therapies, from massages and reiki, to restorative raindrop and sound treatments. There’s a programme of guest practitioners, including chiropractors and nutritionists, and a mani-pedi salon sits on the lower floor of the main spa pod. Little waterfalls and streams trickle by the yoga pavilions, and there’s a meditation cave for tranquility seekers.

Packing tips

Chic and comfy yoga gear. Pick up a few Thai phrases before you leave too; this authentic stay offers a chance to meet and greet the locals (to get you started, here’s hello: swạs̄dī).


Guests are whizzed to their rooms on golf buggies. Public areas and two of the Clay Pool Villas (116 and 108) are wheelchair accessible. Staff will happily arrange shuttle trips to wherever you wish.


Over-14s are welcome, but the villas are best suited to twosomes.


Indeed; the hotel contributes to non-profit organisation Kamala Green Club and participates in their monthly beach clean-up. Food is grown on site or locally sourced, and leftovers are composted. Natural cleaning-products are used, and styrofoam packaging has been banned. Staff are schooled in eco-friendly practices, and the hotel strictly vets companies who run excursions involving animals.

Food and drink
The intimate dining pods dotted around the swimming pool; if these two-person hidey-holes aren’t quite romantic enough, a man-made waterfall cascades close by.
Prim Phuket partygoer: tropical prints, bold colours and just a hint of flashed flesh for ladies, tailored khakis and loose linens for men.
Hotel restaurant

Bamboo and wood-clad Su Tha’s dishes hail from south Thailand and spice-route stops China, India and Sri Lanka. Spoils from the hotel’s ‘enchanted garden’ and mushroom-patch, and a rack’s worth of spices are added to fragrant fare: coconut curries pepped up with chilli; exotic salads tossed with papaya, ivy gourd and banana blossom; and tasting platters with Fine de Claire oysters and herby catches of the day. Find healthy organic fare at the spa, and light meals at Cha-La Pool Bar. A tasty Thai afternoon tea has samosas and tropically tinged pâtisserie. For breakfast there’s fresh fruit, organic Asian dishes, and a live-cooking station. Intimate dining options include gourmet picnics, and lavish dinners served in the hotel gardens or on a rocky outcrop.

Hotel bar

Sparkling bellinis, a lime-and-lemongrass-infused Tom Yum cocktail, and bittersweet martini with raw cacao: the bar’s cocktail list is inventive and classic. Set next to Su-Tha Restaurant, the bar has a terrace for sundowners. Cha-La Pool Bar is laid back with brilliant snacks, and the wine cellar has biodynamic, organic and dessert wines, renowned bottles from around the globe and a full flight of champagnes and proseccos. Wine tastings with cheese and chocolate platters can be arranged with the sommelier.

Last orders

Su-Tha Restaurant opens for sunrise breakfasts and late-night digestifs from 6.30am–midnight. Chill out at Cha-La Pool Bar from 10am-7pm. Wines and cocktails in the Wine Cellar and Bar run dry around 1am.

Room service

Just ask your villa host and dishes will be ferried to your hideaway.



10/88 Moo 6, Nakasud Rd., Kamala, Kathu District


Phuket International Airport is a 45-minute drive from the resort. Direct flights arrive from Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Australia, Russia, Japan, the UAE and Europe. Some flights connect via Bangkok (just over an hour’s flight), which has connections to major international destinations globally. Private transfers can be arranged through the hotel for an extra charge.


Coastal route 4018 from Phuket International takes about 10 minutes longer than inland Route 402, but its scenic vistas make up for fashionable tardiness. There’s an Avis car-hire booth at Phuket International, and free parking onsite.

Worth getting out of bed for

Kamala is the restful yang to Patong’s shady yin; set inland from the coast in dense woodland, Keemala’s setting is more meditation and yoga (three free sessions of each are held a week), than Go Go bars. Free classes include tai chi, fitball or aqua aerobics, or pulse-pumping Muay Thai and circuit training. Learn how to make gaeng phed goong (red curry with prawns) or kluoy buad chi (bananas in coconut syrup) at the culinary academy; guests pick their ingredients, then whip up a feast in the ‘enchanted garden’ (THB3,500 a guest, for two guests or more). Your villa host can arrange zorbing, ziplining through Kathu forest and long-tailed boat trips to pretty Paradise Beach (entry is THB100 a person). The resort’s selective about animal encounters, but eco-friendly options include elephant bathing, and a trip to the Gibbon Rehabilitation Project (+66 76 260 4912) near Bang Pae Waterfall. Kamala’s night market is held each Friday; head to the food stalls for skewers of fried fish, bags of spicy noodles and banana pancakes with condensed milk. A free shuttle takes guests to Kamala Beach, and craft shops and cafés line lantern-lit Kamala Walk Way. Patong is filled with backpackers and dodgy bars, but the Muay Thai matches (Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays) at Patong Boxing Stadium (+66 76 345 578) are some of the town’s less-salacious activities, where guests can mingle with locals.

Local restaurants

Keemala’s cuisine is of such a high standard and so flexible (all dietary needs are tended to) that you’ll rarely stray from Su-Tha Restaurant. However, Kamala’s no culinary desert; mod-Asian eatery Silk Restaurant & Bar (+66 76 338 777), by Kamala Beach has panoramic views of the Andaman Sea and Mediterranean and Asian dishes include tom kha gai (coconut-poached chicken), blue-crab curry and beef tenderloin with foie gras. After dinner, take a nightcap on the terrace’s alfresco ‘opium beds’. Bianconero da Tuveri Restaurant (+66 76 385 952) in Kamala has chic monochrome furnishings; Sardinian chef Salvatore’s handmade pasta, breads and desserts; and wood-fired pizzas are a tasty diversion from Thai fare.

Local cafés

German café Kokosnuss (+66 81 538 5285), close to Kamala Beach, has a few aromatic Thai favourites on its menu, but it’s beloved for its schnitzel, sausages and all-you-can eat roast-pork buffet. The drink list offers both Thai and German beers, and neon-hued cocktails.

Local bars

Rooftop-set Vanilla Sky Bar & Lounge (+66 76 337 300) is a bit more burnished than most local drinking dens and overlooks Kamala’s curve of coastline. The terrace is furnished with wicker bucket chairs and the cocktail list is lined with tempting fruity sundowners, including mango daiquiris and passion fruit mojitos.

By Smith Global Ltd.

Keemala the Magical Resort

Just Stunning

Lush gardens- a real life paradise

Amazing good, everything produced on site

Welcome Pavilion

Birds nest pool villa bathroom

Tent pool villa bathroom

Clay pool cottages exterior

Clay pool cottage bedroom

Another view of clay pool cottage bedroom

Clay pool cottage bathroom

Tree pool houses exterior

Tree pool house bedroom

Tree pool house lounge

Tree pool house bathroom

Keemala pods

Mala spa exterior

Mala Spa lobby

Mala Spa treatment room

Swimming pool

Su Tha Restaurant

Al Fresco Dining

Spectacular wine cellar

Hotel overview

Map location

Officially a favorite getaway spot

Slaytified by the slay team

Leave a Reply