Just off the coast of Phuket lie the Koh Phi Phi, six tiny but perfectly-formed islands that offer Thailand’s ultimate tropical getaway.
Accessible only by ferry or speedboat, Phi Phi Don — the largest and only populated island — boasts some of the best luxury hotels in Thailand. And with Maya Bay set to re-open next year, the best Koh Phi Phi luxury resorts are preparing for an influx of A-list celebs and others with money to burn.
In this article, we’re looking at sheer, unabashed opulence. Our detailed list of the 5 best luxury hotels in Koh Phi Phi will reveal the most exclusive places to stay — from the hillside villas in Long Beach to the private beach resorts in Laem Tong.
So read on, and let us help you choose the best hotel in Phi Phi Island, the first step to your dream vacation and your own personal slice of paradise.
Best Luxury Hotels in Koh Phi Phi: How We Chose
Drawing from a combination of personal experience and trusted reviewers, we’ve looked at over twenty different accommodation options, including a few you won’t find on the major booking sites. We’ve looked at the important factors like location and exclusivity, but we’ve also considered all the VIP extras that add a special touch of luxury.
To get a fair idea of price, we’ve looked at the room rates for two people staying for four days (three nights). We’ve selected two sets of dates: at the end of January in the middle of Thailand’s peak season, and at the beginning of August which is when accommodation is at its cheapest.
Wherever possible, we’ve taken our prices directly from the hotel’s official website, which are usually non-discounted. The lowest prices can usually be found on the major booking sites such as booking.com, but always check the official websites first in case the hotel is running a promotion or special deal.
Choosing a top seven from that original group of twenty was pretty tough, but we think we’ve managed to include something to suit everybody. So, without further ado, here’s our pick.
The 5 Best Luxury Hotels in Ko Phi Phi Don
- Zeavola Resort and Spa, Laem Tong Beach
- Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort, near Laem Tong Beach
- Phi Phi CoCo Beach Resort, Ton Sai Beach
- Holiday Inn Resort Phi Phi Island, Laem Thong Beach
- Phi Phi The Beach Resort, Long Beach
A Quick Guide to the Neighbourhoods of Phi Phi Don
Although it’s a relatively small island, barely 4 square miles in size, Phi Phi Don is divided into four distinct areas, or neighbourhoods, and each has its own personality. You can find hotels and resorts in every neighbourhood, so here’s a quick overview of what to expect.
- Ton Sai Village is the heart and soul of Koh Phi Phi’s nightlife. During the day people flock to Ton Sai’s beautiful beaches, but at night the area comes alive as couples and friends choose from the many excellent pubs, bars and clubs in the centre of the village.
- Loh Dalum is where you’ll find tourists who are travelling on a budget, with many backpacker hostels and economy hotels. The sandy beach, hidden amongst tall cliffs of limestone, is a great place to relax during the day, and at night it transforms to an open-air club with dance music and fire shows.
- Laem Thong (also spelt Laem Tong) is at the north end of the island and it’s the ‘cool’ place to stay, as it’s a little off the beaten track. It’s a calm and peaceful place, with a small selection of high-quality restaurants.
- Long Beach is on Koh Phi Phi’s southwestern shore, and it’s a calm peaceful place but close enough to Ton Sai to offer the best of both worlds. A lot of families choose to holiday here, so be prepared for the possibility of a few unruly kids running around.
Please note: Ton Sai Village and Loh Dalum Beach are both party areas with loud music playing until the early hours, and the music can be heard from some of the hotels. If you prefer your nights quiet and peaceful, then you should look for a hotel on Long Beach or Laem Thong.
Pool Villa Suite: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Peak Season: $660 per night
Pool Villa Suite: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Low Season: $395 per night
A 10-acre tropical retreat on the northern tip of Koh Phi Phi Don, the luxurious barefoot Zeavola Resort is one of only two 5-star accommodations on the island (the other is Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort – see below).
Boasting a stunning and secluded private beach, Zeavola offers hidden-away individual suites fashioned from hand-hewn teakwood. The suites are designed to be reminiscent of the old-style island houses once lived in by early settlers, and the effect really works.
The overall feel is of solid old wood panels, rich fabrics and heavily-canopied beds. There are modern conveniences of course, such as powerful air conditioning, but anything too contemporary is hidden behind teak panels so as not to detract from the rustic surrounds. Little touches, such as fresh flowers left every day after the turndown service, help to add to the old-world charm.
Florian Hallermann, the General Manager/Custodian, is a keen environmentalist and has done a lot to make the Zeavola Resort an eco-friendly concern. All drinking water is purified and bottled on-site, and Florian has even written a (very funny) book about the challenges of creating a sustainable luxury resort on a remote island.
Although Zeavola has three suites which sit right on the beach, the most luxurious space on offer is the Pool Villa Suite, which has a stunning and uninterrupted view of the surrounding rainforest. Referred to as a suite, this is actually a self-contained villa with a private hilltop plunge pool, two outdoor sundecks with privacy screens and a discrete concierge service (if requested).
It’s actually quite easy to get lost walking back through the acacia trees to your villa at night but, as one review puts it, “the journey to your suite is half the fun!”
Zeavola offers two styles of resort dining. Baxil is their authentic Thai restaurant, which serves a free buffet-style breakfast, or there’s a more traditional Thai morning meal available with sticky rice and Thai spices.
For a more relaxed menu, Zeavola offers the beach-front Tacada restaurant, which specialises in Italian cuisine. Then chefs and waiters there will also help you arrange picnics and private seafood barbecues, or even an intimate candlelit meal on the beach.
Zeavola offers a self-contained spa with two treatment rooms, just a short walk away from the villa suites. Treatment oils are made from local spice and fruit extracts wherever possible, which maintains the island’s economy and helps to promote a sustainable ecology. Services included Swedish and Thai massages, rejuvenating facials and cleansing body wraps.
Zeavola’s secluded saltwater pool offers a great place to learn scuba diving, or to get a quick refresher course. PADI-authorised divemasters are on hand to help you learn new skills or brush up on your old ones, and private coral dives can be arranged for whenever suits you best.
Apart from scuba diving, the on-site Zann Zanook Activity Centre can help you with boat trips, shark-spotting tours and island-hopping excursions. There’s also a gym with cardio equipment, and a sauna and steam room.
If you’re looking for a romantic getaway or just a chance to recharge your batteries by stepping into a rustic paradise, Zeavola offers probably the best accommodation experience in the whole of Koh Phi Phi.
“Every aspect of our stay was unbelievable. The staff, the service, the food, the beach, EVERYTHING WAS AMAZING. The manager, Florian was very informative and attentive and checked in with us every day. Our room was beautiful, everything was clean, and the beach was pristine.”
– Rida, USA (taken from a review on booking.com)
Beachfront Junior Suite: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Peak Season: $975 per night
Beachfront Junior Suite: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Low Season: $405 per night
The Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort offers guests the perfect balance of seclusion and refinement. Set in 70 acres of private land at the northern-most end of Phi Phi Don, the resort offers a half-mile stretch of private beach and an infinity pool with a swim-up bar.
The superb location, remote enough to silence the dance music from Ton Sai Village, is a great hit with travellers looking for a luxurious stay in Koh Phi Phi. It’s a family-friendly resort, but the upscale facilities tend to attract mostly couples who are celebrating an anniversary (or just a few days away from the rush).
The most luxurious space for this resort is the Hillside Pool Villa, which is very similar to that offered by the Zeavola, above. So, by way of a contrast, this time we’re looking at the Beachfront Junior Suite, which is the second-most expensive option.
All of Phi Phi Island Village’s accommodations, even the base-level units, are of an exceptionally high quality. Most of the rooms are built to resemble a traditional Thai bungalow, complete with wooden stilts, a thatched roof, and a carved bamboo exterior. The 750-square-foot Beachfront Junior Suites, as the name suggests, are set facing the beach and have over-large sundecks to take advantage of the view, plus an outdoor pavilion. There’s no exclusive pool (you’ll need to book a villa for that), but there is a private whirlpool with views out to the bay.
Being a private and fully-enclosed resort, Island Village are responsible for ensuring a wide range of food is always available. They do this is style, with four separate restaurants (alternatively, room service is available for no extra charge as part of your Junior Suite privileges).
The main dining area is the Api Restaurant & Bar, which opens with a breakfast buffet from 6:30 am and continues serving Thai and western European fare until midnight, accompanied by live music from early evening until close. The Api is also the place to visit for vegan-friendly food, with many dairy- and meat-free meals prepared as standard.
If you’re after authentic Thai food, look no further than the Ruan Thai restaurant, which has been modelled on a traditional Thailand home for an authentic ‘mama’s cooking’ feel.
From 6:00 pm onwards, fans of surf ‘n turf should head to the Beach House Grill & Chill for al fresco dining, which is another outdoor area featuring local fish dishes, imported steak, live music and cocktails. Finally, small bites and homemade ice cream are available from Bean/Co, which specialises in tea, coffee and casual conversation.
One of the most recent additions is the Marine Discovery Centre, where guests can learn about the local ecosystem and get a chance to see sharks feeding in their natural environment, as well as shoals of the ever-popular clownfish. If you’re more into diving than observing, then you’ll be pleased to know that Phi Phi Island Dive Village is a PADI-certified 5-Star Gold Palm dive centre. On the 18th of every month, the instructors run a clean-up operation on the local coral reef, and guests are invited to help. It’s one of the most worthwhile diving trips on the whole island (and you get an exclusive cool t-shirt).
As you’d expect, Island Village boasts a fully-equipped fitness centre and gym, with qualified fitness instructors on hand to help maximise your workout. Or if you’re more into competitive sports, there’s a set of full-size tennis courts on site. After all that effort, The Wana Spa offers a great way to wind down, with the usual Thai massage treatments on offer. Or you can book a private session in your suite, including ‘his and hers’ aromatherapy and massage.
The Village Beach Resort is technically only a 4.5-star hotel, although it’s hard to see how that extra half-star could be earned. Luxury and attention to detail seem to be the resort’s watchwords, and a series of recent renovations have added many new and upgraded guest facilities.
“Resort was amazing. 2 pools that were never overcrowded. Right on private beach. Staff couldn’t do enough for us during our stay! Hotel offers shuttle boat into main […] but can also get a water taxi if times don’t suit you. Ate in Thai restaurant and Api and both were lovely. Breakfast was varied and catered for everyone. Would definitely recommend for anyone wanting total relaxation.”
– Claire, UK (taken from a review on hotels.com)
Pool Beach Villa: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Peak Season: $117 per night
Pool Beach Villa: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Low Season: $83 per night
Offering quality accommodation on the ‘party’ side of the island, the CoCo Beach Resort is one of the newest hotels in Koh Phi Phi, with uniquely designed accommodation and an enviable beachfront location.
Up to now, we’ve looked at accommodation on the quiet side of the island. But what if you want to party, and still fancy a luxurious room to head back to at the end of the night? In that case, the CoCo Beach Resort could be the one to book.
Most guests immediately notice the spectacular outdoor swimming pool, which is the centrepiece of the resort. Access to the beaches is superb, with Loh Dalum Beach literally at your feet as you step out of your beachside villa. And the popular Monkey Beach is only 550 yards away by kayak, which is a free service for all guests.
The 77 rooms are all in the form of bamboo huts, with a unique modern twist. We’ve chosen the top-of-the-range Pool Beach Villa, which comes with an extra-large balcony and a separate seating area. However, the size of the rooms are all the same — the differences in price are due to location, with a premium being paid for proximity to the beach.
Apart from a separate pool bar, all food is served in the one main restaurant, which is set on the beach and continues the bamboo construction theme. As well as serving European staple foods, the restaurant specialises in what it refers to as ‘New Asian Cuisine’. This combines eastern and western tastes but also works with the different textures and hot/cold contrasts. It’s hard to explain — you should just try it!
We’ve noticed that some of the reviews for this resort complain about the noise that emanates from the nightly beach parties. We feel this criticism is unfair, as one of this resorts main selling points is the nearness of the pubs, clubs and beach parties.
The CoCo Beach Resort is ideally positioned for the famous night life of Koh Phi Phi, and you can spend the following morning lying in luxury while you decided what to eat for lunch.
“Great location on the beach. Amazing infinity pool. Great breakfast buffet with helpful attentive staff. A nice swim-up bar in the pool. Can get noisy at night because of a local nightclub.”
– Garry, UK (taken from a review on hotels.com)
Coral Beach Studio: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Peak Season: $253 per night
Coral Beach Studio: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Low Season: $107 per night
Overview:The name ‘Holiday Inn’ probably makes you think of sterile, business-like rooms, but their Phi Phi Island resort is refreshingly different. It’s no mistake that Trip Advisor has placed it in their top 5, and the resort has a gained a well-earned reputation for quality at prices that aren’t too outrageous.
The resort is set on Laem Thong Beach, far from the noise and crowds of the central beaches. And as it’s located in the far north of Koh Phi Phi Don, it’s a great place to catch the sunset.
The Accommodation:The room choices at the Holiday Inn Resort are either bungalows for up to three adults, or modern studios designed for couples. All of the rooms share the same modern and bright Holiday-Inn chain decor, with some extra Thai accents such as dark wood flooring and black-and-gold wall decorations. For our price comparison, we’ve chosen the Coral Beach Studio with a sea view, but please note that not all Beach Studio rooms have the same view.
All rooms come with a private balcony, which gives you a chance to relax amongst the lush tropical garden that surrounds your room. All the amenities you expect are included in the room rental, such as free Wi-Fi, a satellite access TV and air conditioning. To help with the challenges of a tropical island, Holiday Inn have also included a torch and umbrella in every room, which is a thoughtful touch. Concierge services are available by request.
The main restaurant is the Tai Rom Prao, which serves buffet breakfasts, brunch and lunch. In the evening, the same venue offers a different chosen cuisine every night, and many guests choose to eat on the open terrace in the cool evening breeze. An a la carte menu is always available, and meals can be served in your room at any time.
The restaurant is complemented by two bars, the first being the Mong Tha Lay Bar, which offers refreshing fruit juices and smoothies right on the beach. You’ll often find live bands here, and frequent special events such as a movie night.
Located on a hilltop above the resort, the exclusive Sunset Bar is the second of Holiday Inn’s watering holes, which is the best place to view the setting sun whilst relaxing with a signature cocktail.
If you want to work up a sweat before diving into the pool, you’re free to use the air-conditioned gym which offers cardio machines and a good selection of free weights. If you’re travelling with kids there’s a special club for the under-12s, leaving you a few hours a day for exploring the beachfront, or perhaps taking a trip with the Scuba School International Dive Centre.
Other activities include spa treatments, a range of yoga classes, Thai cookery classes with the resident chef and even Muay Thai (Thai kick-boxing) lessons.
With direct access to the beach and three private landscaped pools to choose from, this Holiday Inn easily distinguishes itself from the bland chain hotels. It offers something for everyone; with an added touch of class.
“It is a real paradise! It has the best beach in the island. Great for snorkeling. The staff was so nice, I can’t describe in words how much! The best treatment that we have got in Thailand.”
– Adi, Israel (taken from a review on booking.com)
Grand Deluxe Villa: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Peak Season: $183 per night
Grand Deluxe Villa: 2 people, 4 days/3 nights, Low Season: $116 per night
The minute your longtail kayak drops you at reception, you know you’ve found somewhere special. Set into the side of a gently-sloping hill overlooking Long Beach, the traditional teakwood villas are world-class and very popular with the 25-50 demographic, offering seclusion and privacy amongst the tree canopy.
Long Beach itself stretches for nearly two miles and boasts some of the whitest, softest sand on the whole of the island. Luckily, you’ll get to explore this for yourself as the sand is literally sneaking between your toes as soon as you step outside your villa.
Unlike some other resorts, all the villas at The Beach Resort are constructed to be exactly the same. The low-density teak wood bungalows are equal in size, but the daily rate varies according to the villa’s position on the hill. Grand Deluxe villas are at the top of the hill, Deluxe villas are in the lower ‘step’, and the Front Side Deluxe villas are at ground level. Every villa has a private balcony with an ocean view.
For our rate calculations, we chose a Grand Deluxe Villa. The 55 square metre interior is very generous, but the real standout feature is the uninterrupted view of the Andaman Sea from your balcony. Importantly, this includes a view of Phi Phi Le, the uninhabited island which acts as a gateway to the famous Maya Bay, as featured in the Di Caprio movie ‘The Beach’.
The villas all sleep two, but can be converted to one adult and up to three children if required. The villa’s decor is ‘rustic beach tropical’, and is arguably the best interior design of all the Long Beach hotels.
A comprehensive buffet breakfast is served daily from 7:30 am at the resort coffee shop. For lunch and your evening meal, there’s only one restaurant serving the resort, which offers Western, Chinese, fresh seafood, BBQ and traditional Thai cuisine from 11:30 am until 11:00 pm.
However, this is not your only option, as there are quite a few restaurants and diners in and around the Long Beach area, and plenty more if you take a slow 1-mile walk to Ton Sai Village.
For the ultimate in relaxation, The Beach Resort offers a spa with a range of traditional Thai massages and body-wrap treatments. If water sports are more your thing, the resort runs diving trips and a swim -with-the-sharks experience run by a qualified dive instructor.
In the evening, once you’ve finished your meal, why not order yourself a cocktail at the resort’s beach bar? The bar hosts a DJ and a fire show, which will keep you entertained until 1:30 am.
Phi Phi The Beach Resort offers a location that’s really the best of both worlds. Long Beach is a quiet and relaxing place, but you’re close enough to the action in Ton Sai if you fancy a change of venue. It’s one of our favourite places on Long Beach and we’ve never heard anything but praise for the accommodation and the staff.
“Great location, five star service! Wouldn’t book anywhere else on the island.[…]Long beach is the best spot in PhiPhi Don for a relaxing stay! The rooms have an amazing view to the bay.[…] From beach towels to room cleaning and the room itself, everything was perfect! We were truly happy during this 3 days and enjoyed PhiPhi more than we could have imagined.”
– Teresa J (taken from this review on Trip Advisor)
Koh Phi Phi’s seclusion is what makes it so desirable, and a lot of the hotels and resorts cater to the budget travellers who have Phi Phi Don on their bucket list. However, we hope we’ve shown that it’s possible to find luxury accommodation on all parts of the island: you may need to pay a bit more but, as the saying goes, what price luxury?
All of us at Journeying the Globe are great fans of Asian vacations and backpacking trips, and we’d love to help you with any questions you might have.
Please get in touch with us if we can help in any way, or why not forward this article to someone who might be interested in a trip to Thailand?
Thanks for reading, and we’ll leave you with the links to a few relevant articles that you might enjoy.