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The Hotel Pools of Phuket: Lounging and Lingering at the Anantara Villas

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  Site Where: Phuket, Thailand
October 13, 2011 at 5:43 PM | by | ()

If you love swimming, if you want to spend your vacation alternating between lounging in a pool and lounging next to a pool, and especially if you're a huge hotel pool geek like us, you'll want to add the three pools of the Anantara Phuket Villas to your bucketlist.

First off, it's extremely important to know that every single villa—all 83 of them—have their own private pools. If you're sleeping here, you've got a pool just outside your bedroom. There's no way around it. Second off, that means that the main pools out near the beach (the ones featured here) are blessedly calm and never packed. Guests come out to these pools to socialize, to get a drink, to enjoy the breeze and the Andaman Sea view, and to do serious tanning.

Finally, each of the three pools has a distinct purpose. There's one large pool with a swim-up bar and sunken whirlpool nooks. There's another that's quite shallow, but dotted with adjustable lounger beds shaded by their own umbrellas. And finally, there's the deepest and largest of all the pools, bookended by a large traditional Sala and an infinity whirlpool that flows right into the main pool. All three are connected and making a transition to each is as easy as climbing or descending a few underwater steps.

During our recent stay at the Anantara Phuket, we truly got a feel for exactly how private it is. We rarely encountered other guests, but when we did we noted that they were far more diverse than those we had spotted at the JW Marriott just next door. There were Europeans, Koreans, some South Americans and even Thai guests we met at breakfast, poolside and taking in the sunset on the beach. In fact, we may have been the only American there and we enjoyed that; being so far away from home in Thailand, the more variety of accents and cultures, the better.

We'll let the photos above and the video below do the rest of the talking, but one final suggestion: plan to spend a half-day out here, beginning when the sun is high around noon and you can chill with a cool glass of water and a fresh apple under the umbrellas, on the loungers. Then swim in the afternoon, grab a drink and dinner at the swim-up Sala bar when in the evening, and head out to the beach to dry off and take in the famously vibrant Andaman Sea sunset. Then it's back to your own villa—your own private pool—for the late night skinnydipping.

Tomorrow we'll show you those private pools, too.

Disclosure: We paid a media rate to stay at the Anantara Phuket Villas, but all photos and opinions are completely our own.

[Photos and video: Cynthia Drescher for HotelChatter]

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