The city of Chiang Mai was one of my all-time favorites. For this sailor girl though, the bustle of the crowds can sometimes be overwhelming. After nearly a month in the city, a friend and I decided to get away for a two-day retreat in the mountains.
My across-the-hall neighbor Alice Teacake (of Teacake Travels) organized the little getaway for the two of us. We were excited to take a two-day break and head up the mountains for a little R&R at the Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort.
As we approached this resort, it seemed to emerge from the clouds; Panviman loosely translates to “like heaven” in Thai, and I couldn’t think of a more accurate description for the moment we arrived. The hotel had sent a vehicle to pick us up from Chiang Mai city, where we had been greeted with cold towels scented with essential oils. We were instantly on cloud nine, as we relaxed for a forty-five minute ride up the winding roads.
The hotel is situated on plenty of land in the mountains with incredible views. In fact, though they were at 90% occupancy when we stayed, we felt as if we were the only people there! As of now, this hotel in its sixth year of existence has approx. 30 rooms with plans to expand in the future.
Alice and I stayed in a private villa with a Jacuzzi tub. The room was mixed with beautiful traditional Thai accents and modern amenities – the perfect combination of luxury and culture. Charles, the hotel manager, gave us a tour of the entire property where we were able to view the other rooms.
The main hotel sits atop a hill and overlooks the entire property – although this is considered the “budget” option, the room had incredible views with a beautiful balcony. The bathroom was immaculate, complete with a freestanding soaking tub!
Charles also took us to a private villa with its own swimming pool – this is the most expensive option, but definitely worth it!
No matter where you choose to lay your head at the Panviman Spa Resort, you can’t go wrong! To be honest we hardly spent any time in the room, opting instead to explore the property and indulge in the spa.
The pool area is pristine with three different levels, all flowing into one another. Much of the area is covered with natural shade or umbrellas, but for sun bums like me you can head to the bottom level and soak in the rays with almost complete privacy.
If you continue down the trail you will come across meditation caves. Watch your head!
This adorable seat was too cute to not take a photo!
Best Massage Experience in Thailand
The spa was definitely the highlight for me. We were fortunate enough to receive a 90-minute massage treatment – likely one of the best of my entire life. It began with a presentation of delicious cold hibiscus tea, and a selection of essential oils to choose for my massage – a sensory delight. Next, we were escorted over to a comfortable seat where our feet were soaked and scrubbed. We were then brought into a private room with a soaking tub and steam shower. Our massages were done with great care, expertise and the perfect pressure. I really cannot say enough about this experience overall. In fact, if you are not fortunate enough to stay at the Panviman, please consider coming by just for an afternoon massage!
Charles topped off the experience by treating us to tea and dessert overlooking the mountains while we learned about his interesting life. The entire experience was flawless and when I return to Chiang Mai, the Panviman Spa Resort will be my secret escape for a little R&R.
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*I was an invited guest of the Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort, but as always, the opinions written here are my own.