Phulay Bay, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve review

12 February 2016 / By

One area that piqued our interest was Krabi. Less developed than nearby Phuket, Krabi conjures thoughts of tranquil beaches, scenic byways, and lush landscaping. From the moment we landed in Krabi, we got spoiled with all of our expectations surpassed. Our Krabi retreat was perfectly complemented by a stay at the incomparable Phulay Bay, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve.

Phulay Bay is the first property in the ultra-exclusive subset, Ritz-Carlton Reserve. As such, Phulay Bay has the intimacy of a boutique hotel boasting a local esthetic and supreme luxury and service, complete with personal butler service.

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The Location:

Overlooking tranquil Phang Nga Bay, the property boasts some of the most stunning views we have witnessed. Throughout the bay, stunning limestone mountains emerge from the sea, creating a unique sea view that sets the backdrop for gorgeous sunsets.

Beach bar at Phulay Bay, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve

Beach bar at Phulay Bay, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve


The Property:

Our arrival set the tone for our stay. Dramatic, vibrant aubergine colored walls framed the walkway leading us to a path over water to the welcome pavilion where a traditional Thai Gong ceremony greeted us. We sipped on a tasty lemongrass and ginger tea and met Tee, our butler. After our warm welcome, we set off on a property tour.



Lek Bunnag, a top Thai architect, recently renovated the property. The esthetic is grand. Everything is large and soulful. Moorish inspired architecture blended with Royal Thai ambiance sounds odd, but it works.


Executive Chef Alex Gares heads the culinary program at the property which boasts seven dining options, ranging from casual to a personalized culinary adventure experience. Chef Gares focuses on fresh, local ingredients and flavors. During our stay, we experienced three of the dining outlets. Jampoon hosts the breakfast buffet as well as Mediterranean-inspired cuisine throughout the day. The breakfast buffet was diverse with tasty Asian and Western fare in addition to a la carte dishes. Chomtawan, the sunset lounge, was our favorite place to sip on cocktails, nibble on snacks, and enjoy the remarkable beauty of Phang Nga Bay. Sri Trang features traditional Thai cooking. We dined here both nights, and it appeared to be the most popular place. With great reason! Chef Gares is passionate about Thai food and creates flavorful, local dishes and doesn’t compromise to appease the Western desire for “Americanized” Thai food. Even Tom was impressed and took inspiration for his cooking at home!



A stay at Phulay Bay is perfect for those who want to do nothing more than relax at the spa, lounge by the sprawling infinity pool, nap in a hammock, and sip on cocktails at the beach. However, for more adventurous types, the options are limitless. Explore the nearby jungle on the back of an elephant. Kayak around the islands of Phang Nga Bay. Take the property’s complimentary long boat service to Hong Island, where you can snorkel and swim in calm, clear waters and sunbathe on a powdery soft and clean beach. One of my favorite experiences was meeting Koko, Phulay Bay’s baby elephant. I got to hand feed bananas to Koko on the beach at sunset. Where else can you do something fun like this?!

Activities abound at the Phulay Bay, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve

Activities abound at the Phulay Bay, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve

The intimate resort features 54 one-bedroom unique Pavilions and Villas. Each room boasts oversized beds, spacious bathrooms, a mini-bar with a handful of complimentary non-alcoholic beverages, and a sprawling outdoor patio. Our villa even had a rooftop deck offering the most spectacular view of Phang Nga Bay.



Phulay Bay, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve is the premier place to stay when exploring Krabi. Personalized attention, delicious food and drinks, comfortable accommodations, exciting activities, relaxing areas to lounge, and gorgeous views abound. The majority of the guests are adult couples. However, Phulay Bay boasts a very popular Kids Club that features activities for all ages. If you are traveling to Krabi and want a luxurious and individualized experience, look no further than Phulay Bay. You will not be disappointed.

Virtuoso Amenities for your stay  

For 2019:

  • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
  • Buffet breakfast, for up to two in room guests
  • USD 100 Equivalent Food & Beverage credit, or Spa credit per room to be utilized during stay (not combinable, no cash value if not redeemed in full, non-transferable)
  • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi


Contact Us for additional information about this property or others you may be interested in Southeast Asia.  Krabi E-brochure (pdf)

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