A relatively unexplored island in Thailand - at least for the luxury market - appears poised to become a new destination of choice. Koh Samet lies just over 70km southeast of Pattaya and has 14 beaches surrounded by coral reef. Thanks to the mostly budget accommodation, the island has until now attracted the backpacker crowd and budget travellers. But all that is set to change. A new 40-villa Paradee Resort on the southern tip of the island will be the island's most luxurious accommodation when it opens in November. Accommodation ranges from garden villas to beachfront cottages with private pools. Resort facilities include a spa centre with four private treatment rooms, a swimming pool, and a beachfront grill restaurant. The resort is targeting couples, with rates starting from 8,900 baht (HK$1,800). Three other resorts on the island have undergone renovations to upgrade their facilities. They include the four-star Le Vimarn Resort which has a two-storey spa overlooking the beach, and four honeymoon cottages (prices from 7,800 baht). www.samedresorts.com/resort/paradee.htm . Moving away from Thailand, a 'cultural tour' of some of Asia's historic landmarks is being offered by the Worldhotels Deluxe Collection. The Historic Route promotion offers packages at hotels in Vietnam, Cambodia and Singapore. A city visit to Singapore includes one night at the Goodwood Park Hotel for S$255 (HK$1,250). The hotel on Scott's Road was built in 1900 and all renovations and modifications have remained true to its turn-of-the-century architecture and interior. In Cambodia, travellers will stay at the Angkor Palace Resort & Spa. In addition to a visit to the famous Angkor Wat temples, guests will also receive a traditional Khmer massage, and a three-course Khmer dinner. The package costs US$200 (double). The Vietnam package leads to Danang, where travellers stay at the Furama Resort Danang. Visits to nearby Unesco World Heritage Sites, such as the ruined city of Hue, can be arranged on request. The US$394 price tag includes two nights' accommodation and breakfast, a facial at the hotel's spa, plus a cycle tour to Danang town. Packages are valid until the end of the year. Call 800 968563. Destination travel takes on a whole new meaning at the newly opened Xianglu Grand Hotel in Xiamen province on the mainland, where size clearly does matter. The 1,525-room hotel is more a community than a hotel, tapping into the business traveller (the hotel is located in the city's Huli Zone industrial district and is near Hubin), tourists (especially those with a major shopping habit), and trade events from galas to weddings. Facilities include a 6,740-metre shopping mall, business centre, spa and fitness centre, and even a travel agency. The hotel has two ballrooms which can accommodate up to 950 guests each, and there are a further 26 function rooms able to accommodate many events. The hotel was designed by Asian architect C. Y. Lee. Check the website at www.xianglugrand.com . Sky Travel is organising a cruise to the Eastern Caribbean islands of Fort Lauderdale, St Maarten, St Thomas, and Princess Cays. The 11-day trip includes seven nights aboard the Caribbean Princess plus two nights' pre and post hotel accommodation. Departure dates are November 4, 11, 18 and 25, and December 2, 9 and 30 (high season surcharges apply for the latter). Prices start from HK$10,888 a person based on twin cabin share. The fee does not include extras such as port charges and taxes. Call 2956 6811.