As we all know, city life can be non-stop and sometimes a quick escape is required to reboot the body and soul back into gear. Just a couple of hours flight away, located in a beautiful spot on the Mediterranean coast, Asia Gardens Hotel & Thai Spa is a unique concept that combines contemporary luxury with Asian philosophy – transporting guests into another world where Asia meets the Mediterranean. One hundred and fifty metres above sea level, the views are spectacular – the Benidorm skyline against the twinkling ocean in front of the property, and the majestic scree of the Sierra Cortina mountains behind. The area is famed for its microclimate – the hotel claims to receive an average of 8 hours’ cloud-free sunshine every day over the year, making it one of the sunniest spots in the Mediterranean.
Travelling in the last week of September the hotel wasn’t particularly busy, although I was told that it was back at full occupancy at the weekend. And that must be quite a sight. The property is vast. Staggering in size, the lobby is a wonderful sight for arriving guests, with stunning views of the gardens and coastline beyond. Decorated in modern Balinese style, there are over 300 rooms, and my entry-level double deluxe was over 30m², with a beautiful bathroom and spacious terrace.
On arrival, guests are presented with a map of the property, along with a schedule of daily activities including various classes such as Tai Chi, meditation and yoga, children’s activities and restaurant opening times. The map is required when weaving your way along the paths through the gardens laden with palms, bamboo, bonsai trees, bougainvillea, frangipani, ponds full of colourful fish, Balinese wooden carvings, and much more. With over 160 different botanical species and rambling water features throughout the resort, the subtle Eastern scents and soothing sounds promise the ultimate in relaxation. It’s a tropical paradise with plenty of space to explore.
The property’s elaborate network of six uniquely designed pools interspersed by thatched palapas and wooden walkways is a wonderful sight for tired eyes and sore limbs. And if you are after the VIP treatment, Asia Gardens is the spot for you. Thatched poolside cabanas with billowing white curtains are cordoned off for those who book ahead (for a fee, of course), and guests staying in suites have their own elaborate pool area and team of staff to go with it.
When the heat of the day becomes too much, the Thai spa is a haven of relaxation where therapists who studied at the Wat Po Temple in Bangkok – where the first traditional Thai massage techniques were originally taught – deliver pampering treatments.
With ten bars and restaurants to choose from, guests certainly don’t go hungry either. Highlights include Koh Samui specialising in the flavours of south-east Asia, and La Palapa which serves Mediterranean cuisine including an outstanding gazpacho, perfect after a morning by the pool.
The property stands beside two 18-hole golf courses, and the bright lights of Benidorm no doubt offer plenty more, if you’re brave enough to break the peaceful reverie found on the property. From the expanse of Asian-styled tropical gardens, to the private Thai spa cabins, everything is designed to bring complete peace of mind. A few things could have been better at Asia Gardens, but despite that, it really was a rather lovely experience. One thing I’m sure of is that after 48 hours, my mind was clear and I was walking a little slower.
Rooms at Asia Gardens Hotel & Thai Spa start from €240 per room per night for a double deluxe with breakfast based on two people sharing in November. To book, please call +34 966 818400 or visit www.asiagardens.es
Asia Gardens’ new Rebirth Wellness Programme
Designed to improve physical and mental strength, prevent illness and promote general wellbeing, the package is based on sacred oriental principles, and can be booked on a two, four, seven and nine night basis. The programme involves three key components:
• Guests are given a Bioenergetic screening (with a doctor), a pioneering, non-invasive evaluation of a person’s energetic health and balance. Imbalances are addressed and a bespoke wellness itinerary is designed to meet individual health requirements.
• Daily 60 minute master-classes with experts in the Eastern-inspired practices of yoga, meditation and Tai chi.
• A full-board healthy meal plan allowing guests to dine in any of the resort’s restaurants where nutritious meal options are highlighted, allowing guests to capitalise on the health benefits of the Programme.
The programme is available to book during the following weeks: 13-22 November, 11-20 December, 15-24 January 2016, 19-28 February 2016 and 4-13 March 2016.