A private white sand beach, a private morsel of forest, a private stretch of river. A private winery, we have seen it all. Nevertheless, a private lovely waterfall was a first. At first sight, I didn’t wonder why this resort is listed among the “Best Paradises” by the Tourism Authority of Thailand. It is a plot of paradise indeed.
Sukantara Cascade Resort lies twenty-four kilometers north of Chiang Mai, in Maerim, on the Maerim-Samoeng road. After zigzagging for about eight kilometers through the greenest possible landscape, I arrived in this cascade-studded forestry heaven.
The first building I saw while entering, partly hidden in the half park half jungle, was the Chiida Spa. The timber-just about everything is wood at the resort-spa rooms are designed in the northern Thai Lanna style and combine a romantic, luxurious and “mystical” interior with hill tribe decorative items. The relaxing and rejuvenating therapy-massage pampers guests through an extensive menu of not less than forty-five choices, lasting from thirty minutes to six hours.
Sukantara Cascade Resort has six Deluxe Bungalows, two “Luxury Camp Tents” on the opposite side of the river, and one exquisite Suite Pool Villa monopolizing the spot’s prime view.
For the close-to-nature lovers, a stay in a Luxury Camp Tent, a spacious, high-roofed tent with all the necessary room amenities, is an unforgettable experience. Honeymooners or those who emphasize intimacy and exclusivity will adore the Suite Pool Villa and its cute, private Jacuzzi pool.
My Deluxe Bungalow had a very spacious terrace with a gorgeous view and a set of deck chairs. The interior was rather simple but impeccable. The creamy curtains and ditto sofa matched harmoniously with of the room. All the pleasurable room amenities, such as bathrobes, coffee set and soft cotton slippers, were available, and a fruit basket waited to be massacred. A half circular sofa filled up the bay window, a comfortable piece of furniture to watch TV, one of the DVD movies provided by the resort, or to use as a cozy reading haven.
An outdoor shower, caressed by foliage, surrounded by flowers, and witnessing a rising or setting sun, is always a romantic affair. A wide showerhead splashed its hot jet, welcome in the evening coolness, while a white peacock settled down as an onlooker.
At dusk, cicadas briefly outrivaled the waterfall in decibels. When their piercing cacophony finally calmed down, the mountain stream got the upper hand again.
The newly roofed, open air, riverside dining terrace was dimly lit and very atmospheric. For more eccentric tastes, there is a bamboo set planted right in a little pond at the foot of the waterfall, where one can sip its cool beer with feet flooded by the river water. A bamboo plateau is fixed in the middle of a water mass between two cascading stretches. It sports a two-tiered, Bordeaux-Lacquered umbrella and serves as a unique kantoke dinner venue for romantic couples.
You can sit, read, or just relax the whole day in this little heaven, with the unrelenting sound of the cascading river scrubbing the rocks and boulders, which make up the Mae Raem riverbed. And there’s a scenic Tad Mok Waterfalls nearby which is just a walking distance. Throw in the breath-taking new “Deluxe Panorama”villa, and The Sukantara Cascade Resort and Spa is just delightful, and people who don’t enjoy this kind of nature resort must have veiled eyes and concrete hearts.
SUKANTARA CASCADE RESORT&SPA
12/2 Moo8, Maeram Sub-district
Mae Rim District, Chiang Mai