Where is it?
If 007 was feeling stressed while trying to track down Scaramanga in T_he Man with the Golden Gun_ he should have stopped off here (it’s almost within firing range of Khao Phing Kan, aka James Bond island where the 1974 movie was filmed). Less than 45-minutes by boat the island of Koh Yao Noi is a world away from the hustle and bustle of Phuket.
Why the hype?
Spilling down the leafy hillside on the island of Koh Yao Noi, the resort’s spa is modelled on a typical village house from northern Thailand – think bamboo interiors, thatched roofs and lily ponds. The wellness programme is led by Aneesh Vadakkeveedu, a fourth generation ayurvedic doctor, yoga teacher and Reiki master from India, who specialises in personal consultations based on an individual’s body type or dosha.
What to have?
Those looking for a complete overhaul can elect for a medical screening that will dictate a full regime for your stay. If, like Bond, you don’t have much time on your hands go for the Signature Yao Noi Journey. The three-and-a-half-hour package includes a Thai herbal steam, a scrub using freshly grated coconut and turmeric, a massage using warm poultices containing plai (a species from the ginger family with anti-inflammatory properties), turmeric and lemongrass, and an anti-ageing facial using natural silk cocoons, which are rubbed on your face to improve skin elasticity.
Best by boat:
Anchor out in the bay and tender in to the resort’s private jetty, where a golf buggy will whisk you up the hillside.