Half of the 492 rooms at Hilton Sanya Resort & Spa have ocean views
Raymond Zhou and Huang Yiming revel in the onsite lagoons, top-notch service and tropical allure of Hilton Sanya Resort & Spa.
Along the 400-meter pristine beach at the southernmost tip of Hainan Island lie a dozen luxury hotels, all of them resorts offering great style and comfort. But a bird’s-eye view of Yalong Bay shows one really stands out – or, more accurately, makes waves.
Hilton Sanya Resort & Spa doesn’t just provide ocean views in half of the 492 rooms on offer in suites and villas. It actually brings waters to the doorstep of many ground-floor units with a labyrinth of nine swimming pools.
The pools form a meandering and sometimes interconnected lagoon that visually extends the sea, with the security, peace of mind and calm of water free from the vagaries of the vast ocean.
Some of the pools have manmade sandy beaches while others cascade with water. Water slides are available for kids. From the terrace of as many as 14 rooms, you can literally jump into the water and wade or swim through a maze of waterways lined with tropical flora and fauna.
You can even find seclusion in Jacuzzi-style pavilion pools with thatched roofs and an abundance of low-hanging plants.
But you may want to share your sun-soaked merriment with other vacationers by combining your dip with a foray to poolside bars, where even the menus float and are waterproof.
Covering 100,000 sq m, the Hilton Sanya was designed according to the Chinese cosmology of five elements – water, wood, metal, earth and fire.
Water is obviously the dominant theme. Next comes the wood of dark, brown pillars and beams that contrast with the ubiquity of sparkling, crystal-clear water.
Visual balance is also evident in staff uniforms, which are black with silver or orange cloth belts, reminiscent of ethnic Li and Miao attire.
The touch of southern China is subtle overall. It is everywhere and nowhere, just like the balmy air from the sea.
But if authentic China is what you are looking for, China Harvest is the place. Here you can have the best Chinese cuisine the island offers, yet without an exorbitant cost.
Many of the country’s quintessential dishes are available, but the gastronomically accommodating can try some local Hainan food, including its widely popular seafood and Wenchang chicken.
To wind down from the day, you can stop by Bar D’Or – French for "gold". The name is golden and the music metallic, another of the essential elements.
Hilton Sanya prides itself on its top-notch service. "We have the lowest turnover of employees in the business," says Ella Dai, a manager with the resort.
"About 30 percent of our staff are local hires, and they bring an enthusiasm and hospitality unique to Hainan."
Before the 2008 global financial crisis, international guests made up more than half the resort’s clientele. Now the base of increasingly affluent Chinese travelers is expanding rapidly, and for them the resort’s appeal is its international standards.
"Winter is the busiest season for Sanya, but June really offers great advantages in terms in cost, for either convention planners or vacationers," Dai says.
A tropical forest with all the modern amenities one can imagine surely enables the perfect combination of sun, ocean, shelter and a fresh sea breeze.
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