Our Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort Review
We love Chiang Mai city and everything that it offers us when living there but at times we just have to escape to the nearby mountains and countryside for some needed fresh air. Chiang Mai’s close proximity to the mountains of Northern Thailand makes it easy to take a hike for a few hours but for something far more special there are heaps of amazing hotels and resorts dotted around the hillsides for a weekend getaway. Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort is one such place and we couldn’t wait to check it out.
Read on for our review of Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort including our stunning suite room, restaurant food, spa experience, the breakfast buffet and other available facilities.
Where is Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort?
The resort is in the mountainous Maerim district which is about an hour drive from Chiang Mai city centre or the airport. The resort offers a free shuttle bus from either location so there is no need to worry about hiring a car or paying for an expensive taxi to get there. We made such little effort and spent such little time to get to the resort but once we arrived it felt like we were a million miles away from busy Chiang Mai. The views from every corner of the resort are absolutely stunning!
Our Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort Room
Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort has 8 different types of accommodation (52 rooms in total) from deluxe rooms up to villas with private pools on the balconies! On the weekend we stayed, the resort was fully booked so we were given a lovely Sky Mountain Junior Suite. Villas aside, these suites are the biggest rooms they offer and come with the best views of the entire property. It was a huge suite with a giant king size bed, a separate living area, massive bathroom and shower and a breathtaking balcony with 180-degree views of the surrounding mountains. We had one of the highest elevated rooms in the resort so really felt on top of the world!
The Food at Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort
The resort has just one restaurant but the food they offer is so delicious. The menu consists of all the usual Thai favourites as well as some local Northern Thai dishes that many travellers may not have tried before. For the less adventurous there are some Western options too.
There aren’t any other restaurants nearby so we eat dinner at Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort all three nights of our stay. We stuck with Thai food for the entire weekend and sampled such tasty and well-presented dishes such as chicken with cashew nuts, Northern Thai style pork curry, grilled salted fish, deep fried pork, chicken satay and coconut creme brulee. At just around 200 baht a main dish you get very good value for money here. It all got a double thumbs up from us.
The breakfast at Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort was a highlight of each day of our stay. The two words “breakfast” and “buffet” always get us excited and the breakfast buffet here did not let us down. There was a lot of choices. Hot food consisted of spicy Northern Thailand sausages, bacon, baked beans, rice, noodles, steamed dumplings and much more. There was an egg counter where staff can make you the best omelettes we’ve ever tasted, pancakes and waffles. Then there’s all the cereals, fruit, bread and pastries you can eat! We also have a little tip for you. The staff walk around with tea and coffee jugs but they don’t make it obvious that you can order lattes and cappuccinos from their coffee machine. They’re as good as you get in a decent coffee shop so we recommend politely asking.
Couples Spa Experience
Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort has a gorgeous spa situated down the bottom of a valley next to a small lake. Apart from the treatment rooms, the entire spa is open air with views of the lake and surrounding jungle. Our 90-minute spa experience started with a drink of hot lemongrass while we chose the oils we wanted for our massages. There were 5 oils to choose from, each offering something different but we were mostly choosing from the lovely scents they were emitting. We could also choose from a menu of different treatments including facials, body scrubs, full body oil massage, Thai massage and massages for particular body parts like feet, neck and back. We opted to spend the whole 90 minutes getting an oil massage but asking them to concentrate on certain areas.
The masseuses looked very young but their massage skills and attention to detail clearly meant these ladies are older than they look, which is pretty common in this part of the world. They used just the right amount of pressure to relieve our body’s aches and pains and had a repertoire of various massage techniques that only a well-trained masseuse would know.
Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort has so much in the way of facilities so we didn’t need to leave the property for the entire weekend. The highlight is their tiered swimming pool which offers more epic mountain views across the valley. There’s also an open-air gym, meditation cave, table tennis and foosball tables, giant chess, mini golf, souvenir shop, coffee shop and lots of garden space to sit at with a cool beer while enjoying panoramic views.
The big selling point for Panviman Chiang Mai Spa Resort is their friendly and welcoming staff. The resort hires 60% of their staff from the nearby village further down the mountain so it’s great to know that a resort like this is helping the local community by providing them with full-time work. Because of this, the resort is full of native Northern Thailand smiles, the sort of genuine smiles that made this country so popular in the first place. We’re not just talking about the reception and restaurant staff, we’re talking about them all, from the gardeners to the maintenance staff, they would all smile and say hello whenever we passed, which in turn, made us truly happy guests.
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