Pleasure island

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 28 June, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 28 June, 2011, 12:00am


Serenity Bay is a sprawling resort complex that includes high-rise luxurious apartments, the International Yacht Club and Marina, an art gallery and music hall, and the sleekly designed InterContinental Sanya Resort.

The InterContinental Sanya is relatively new, having opened only last summer.

With the luxury market fully established, new hotels have the option to innovate with design and services, as the InterContinental has done.

The InterContinental design differs from most others in Sanya in that it merges a modern feel with a classic Asian seaside flavour.

The hallmark of the resort's design - and the places that best fuse modernity with classic ocean-view elegance - is the Sea Pavilion Chinese seafood restaurant.

'Of all the beautiful elements of this hotel, this restaurant, I think, is my favourite,' says Catherine Lee, director of sales and marketing for the InterContinental Sanya.

But even with established players opening their third and fourth hotels in Sanya, the market is still growing and shows no signs of slowing down. 'There is no doubt that Sanya is becoming a fast-growing international leisure and MICE [meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions] destination,' says Sergio Bretti, general manager of the Pullman Oceanview Sanya Bay.

The Pullman opened its doors on December 31 last year and is the 100th hotel for Accor on the mainland, and the second Sanya position for Bretti.

The hotel is an amazing sight - especially as night falls - dominating the Sanya Bay curve. The massive main edifice and wings provide a garden and ocean view for all of the hotel's guests.

The Pullman and the InterContinental realise that being luxurious is not enough in today's Sanya market.

There isn't an international resort around that doesn't offer world-class service, excellent rooms and a great experience.

Within the next 12 months, hotel capacity is set to double in Sanya and, with major international events such as the Volvo yacht race that will stop at the Serenity Coast marina, the future looks bright for Sanya's hotel managers and their guests.

'I am really excited to be here,' says Michel Koopman, general manager of InterContinental Sanya. 'The growth here is amazing, our location and services are some of the best I have encountered in my career and every six months another batch of excellent 5-star resorts open their doors.

'It's an exciting time to be in Hainan [Island].'