An enormous white rabbit-like sculpture stands in the middle of a green courtyard with its hands clutching a clock, implying that time has stopped and we are about to be lost in the realm of imagination upon entering.

So Sofitel Hua Hin promotes itself as an imaginative escape and my travel companions and I felt as if we’d entered the beloved fairytale Alice’s Adventure In Wonderland during our stay there.

The property is nestled on the peaceful Cha-am beach and surrounded by lush hilly landscapes, adjacent to natural tourist sites such as Khao Nang Phanthurat Forest Park and Nayang Bat Cave. There is a wide range of entertaining activities and recreational facilities for people of all ages to enjoy unique holiday experiences among stunning scenery.

Design and Facility

Award-winning architect Duangrit Bunnag was in charge of creating a space that combined modernity, aesthetics and nature under one roof. Focusing on seclusion and comfort, this resort is blanketed by towering trees and local plants and the original structure was redesigned to become an interwoven maze of open courtyards and private pathways, with a palette of naturally aged woods.

Donatien Carratier, a forward-thinking interior designer known for creating resonant spaces in which vivid fantasies mix with reality, has converted every corner into a painting canvas to inspire exotic holiday moods under the “Evolution Of Life” concept.

Inspired by the Grand Galerie de l’Evolution natural history museum in Paris, greenish courtyards and other recreational places are embellished with a vibrant array of artworks.

Bunny sculptures, for example, leap to a wall of magical mirrors and sprint throughout the resort, while a group of wildlife-inspired sculptures congregate in a reflecting pond at the front of the lobby.

Renovated two years ago, the resort offers 109 spacious rooms, suites and pool villas that range in sizes from 60m² to 260m² and are decorated in two different styles — So Arty and So Nature. All rooms have a MyBed, plus a cutting-edge sound system and a complimentary in-room private bar.

During the day, four swimming pools in different themes are bustling spots to relax and soak up beach sensations. The 60m² Signature Pool is in the middle of the resort and is a watery playground where families and friends can put their athletic abilities to the test on a Wibit inflatable water pool adventure.

On the 3,600m² So Wonderland Adventure Golf course, golfers can pretend they are looking for magical herbal items to help Viola the Witch. It’s like an enchanted forest, complete with 18 holes where stone creatures can be brought back to life.

The multifunctional tennis and basketball court, as well as the pickleball court, are great places to burn calories. A 2.2km cycling track is also on offer with bike rentals available.

The resort also features a kids’ club, with a wide selection of leisure activities like a ball pit, Nintendo Switch games, kids’ yoga, sand paintings as well as the life-sized chessboard at the Rabbit Lawn.

My Room

I stayed overnight in a 60m² So Comfy room with a contemporary design. A collection of life-size portraits in a gold frame and vivid nature-inspired furnishings lightened up the cement-like walls and floor. USB hubs and plug outlets are available both in the work area and bedhead. For entertainment, there’s a smart TV with satellite channels and a reliable signal of complimentary Wi-Fi.

The bathroom is large enough to accommodate a closet and a minibar corner, which has a coffee machine and tea-making facilities as well as a small refrigerator fully packed with soft drinks and snacks. There is a corner of two basins with full amenities, a bathtub, a separate toilet and a rainshower with simple controls.

Dining

The White Oven restaurant serves an international breakfast buffet from 7-10.30am. A comprehensive salad bar, an American breakfast, and local delicacies like pan-fried eggs with topping and noodles, as well as a variety of freshly baked pastries and fresh juices were among the highlights of my meal.

The beachside club and restaurant Beach Society was a terrific site to view the sunset over the Gulf of Thailand and enjoy refined dining. Grilled Hokkaido scallop served with sour and spicy pomelo salad was also a great way to wake me up while my other favourites included grilled prawn with parsley, grilled seafood platter and salt crust grilled fish.

Leisure Experience

The resort recently launched the So Explorer programme that allows vacationers to see natural wonders while learning about local culture. Early in the morning, our personal guide took us on a three-hour hike to the peak of the limestone Khao Nang Phanthurat Forest Park, which is supposed to be the source of inspiration for the Thai folk tale Sang Thong.

In the evening, we headed to Nayang Bat Cave, just a 10-minute drive from a resort. It was the best spot to view the sunset while thousands of bats left their habitat in search of food.

We were also greeted with a selection of tantalising pre-dinner beverages and small bites.

Verdict

So Sofitel Hua Hin is far from the resort town and convenience stores. It’s situated on a tranquil beach but provides a variety of fun recreational activities for people of all ages to enjoy their leisure time, making it ideal for those looking to get away from the crowds.

From now until Dec 23, the resort is offering the Family Fun at So package from 5,000 baht++ for a stay in a So Comfy room with daily breakfast for two persons, 500 baht food and beverage credit to be used at any outlets, 500 baht spa credit and 50% discount on food and non-alcohol beverages at So Sundae or activities at Kids’ Tent.

So Sofitel Hua Hin is at 115, Cha-am District, Phetchaburi, 76120. Call 032-709-555 or visit so-sofitel-huahin.com.


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