Living a tasteful life

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Thailand Part 1: The Surin Phuket

Well friends, I finally found time to do a recap of my recent trip to Thailand! There are two reasons it took me a while to write this post. One, I was finding it tough to put into words just how much we enjoyed the trip. Two, I knew this post would require a lot of time and effort, especially sorting through all of our photos. I didn’t want to overload you with too much at once, so I split up the recap into three posts. Today I’m sharing the first of half of our trip!
Our flight departed Charleston on Saturday, October 10, at 6 a.m. I don’t think I got a wink of sleep the night before because I was so worried that I would oversleep. Our first flight was from Charleston to New York. We had three hours before our next flight, which meant time to grab some breakfast and mentally prepare for the long trip ahead of us. Our second flight departed JFK at 11:20 a.m., with an arrival in Dubai early the next morning. We flew Emirates for this leg of the trip and I loved it. I’ve never flown with them before, but I have nothing but positive things to say about the experience. From the warm towels we were greeted with, to the plentiful food and beverages we were served, Emirates service made the thirteen-hour flight bearable.

We arrived in Dubai on Sunday morning and had to get on yet another flight. I will admit, it was pretty tough getting on another plane after such a long flight and knowing that we had to do it all over again. I remember thinking to myself how beautiful our destination better be in order to make up for all the travel time. Our flight from Dubai left at 10:30 a.m. and we arrived (surprisingly, with no delays) in Phuket at 8 p.m. Sunday evening. To say we were ready to get to our room and lie in an actual bed would be an understatement. We got off the plane and immediately went outside to catch a cab, which didn’t go as smoothly as we had hoped. In an effort to exchange some money at the airport, the ATM machine ate my Whit's credit card, but thankfully, we had several others as backup. After a few minutes of panic, we were in a cab and on our way to the resort.
We arrived at The Surin Phuket, exhausted and ready to get to our room. We were also pretty anxious to see what the place looked like, praying that the photos were a replica of the real thing. We were greeted by the staff immediately as we stepped out of the cab. We were given flower bracelets, refreshing lemongrass beverages and cool towels, which were such a delightful treat after all of the travel. 
After we checked in, we hopped on a golf cart and were driven up a ridiculously steep hill to the top of a lush green hillside, where our cottage sat nestled at the top. We were in complete awe when we opened the doors of our private little one-bedroom cottage. A quaint and spacious, amenity filled room awaited us. 
We changed our clothes and headed down the hill to grab a quick bite before heading to bed. We had dinner at The Sunset Cafe, one of the restaurants on-site. I kept it light with a Caesar salad, while Whit sampled the chicken satay. 
The bread and butter was almost too pretty to eat. I later learned that each evening, a different butter was served. After dinner and a little nightcap, we made our way back up the hill for some shut eye.
Because we had slept so much on the plane, we were actually well-rested the next morning, up at 6 a.m. and ready to go. I think I was just too excited to waste any time sleeping, knowing where we were. We got dressed and headed downstairs to enjoy the resort’s complimentary breakfast buffet. 
This buffet put others to shame. Fried rice, dim sum, pastries, fruit, parfaits, cheeses, and chef-attended omelet and pancake stations. You name it, and they had it. It was just the beginning of a downward-spiral eating marathon. Not only was the food delicious, but the service was amazing. Our chairs were pulled out for us, napkins placed in our laps and cups of coffee delivered to our table. There was no need unmet. The breathtaking views from breakfast made it hard to contain our excitement to get down to the beach and pool.

The rest of our afternoon was spent lounging by the stunning and dramatic black tile swimming pool, and casually strolling the sugar-like, white sandy beach.
Perched in the white sands is The Beach Bar, where we also spent a good amount of our time, enjoying cocktails and delicious food. Fish and chips seemed like the appropriate choice for this beach setting. Whit went with the green curry chicken, which I sampled and loved. 

We decided to venture outside of the resort for the evening. A short walk from the resort was the public part of Surin Beach. We stopped in one of the beach bars to enjoy a cocktail and a breathtaking sunset. I couldn't get over how beautiful the sunsets were. There was something so different about the beautiful colors of the sky compared to ours. The disappearing sun seemed so close, but yet so far away.
The sunset literally got prettier by the minute. 
While researching for the trip, we had considered staying at The Twin Palms. I had read great things about the Oriental Spoon, which is their on-site restaurant. Since the resort was on our walk back, we decided to stop in and check the place out. 

I don't recall what the name of this appetizer was, but it was delicious as well. 
I ate a lot of pad thai on this trip, but I have to admit, theirs was one of the best I had in Thailand.
Whit went with the fish, and had dinner envy the rest of the evening. 


We started the next morning with the endless buffet at The Surin, followed by pool time. We woke up around 6 a.m. every morning in order to make the most of our days. 

So, by mid-afternoon, it was time to give our bodies a break from the sun. We figured it was a good opportunity to venture into town. The hotel arranged a taxi for us, and luckily our driver spoke pretty good English and was so helpful. There just so happened to be a festival taking place in Phuket Town that day, so off we went to check out the festivities. 
It was the Phuket Vegetarian Festival, a meatless celebration where everyone wears white, showing respect for the local customs. (We didn't get that memo.) The meatless part made me feel a little better about experimenting with the street food. I wish I had been courageous enough to try more, but I didn't want to take my chances. I could not wrap my head around the endless amount of vendors and food. It was nearly impossible to choose one to try. Not to mention that we didn't know what any of it was. 
I am so glad that we came across this festival. I felt so immersed in the culture just walking down the streets amidst the festival-goers. 

On our list of things to do while we were out was to find one of the big Buddah statues. After wandering around aimlessly and failing to find one on our own, we hopped in a cab with yet another extremely helpful driver. He took us to all the places he thought we would like to see, including this beautiful lookout point over Phuket Town.

We found Buddah, and he was massive!
The sheer details in the artwork and craftsmanship of these temples was unbelievable. 
The sun started going down and that was our cue to head back to the resort. We opted to have dinner at the hotel and call it an early night so we would be well rested for our trip to the jungle the next day. The chicken satay was ridiculously good. Whit ordered it multiple times during our stay. 

More to come on our trip to the jungle and time with the elephants!



  1. ahhh so much fun! it looks like such a beautiful place with REALLY good food! xo jillian - cornflake dreams

    1. It was so beautiful, and the food was amazing! I would go back in a heartbeat!

  2. ahh i've been so excited for this recap! these pictures are amazing. cannot get over the food. you guys are too cute!

    1. Aw, thanks! Yes, it took me forever to write this recap because I wasn't sure where to even begin. More to come! :)

  3. Love this!! Totally bookmarking. Phuket is on our travel list for next year. I can't wait!

    1. Thanks! It was by far the best trip I've ever been on. You will have an amazing time. Feel free to email me if you have any questions about anything. :)

  4. So happy to read about your Thailand adventure! Can't wait to read more!

    1. Yes! Thank you for your tips and suggestions. I can't wait to hear about your recent trip!

  5. Looks like such a wonderful trip! Love all the food photos and that black tile pool is gorgeous.

    1. It was an amazing trip! Thanks for reading!

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