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Few travellers arrive in Langkawi by pure chance. The result? An exotic jewel that, so far, escapes the crowds that flock to neighbouring Phuket and Bali.

Stepping off the Kuah dock, I hail a taxi and drive south. Finally, the tropical fantasy I have been dreaming about reveals itself.

A jungle-luxe island hideaway 

The St. Regis LangkawiThe St. Regis Langkawi

The St. Regis Langkawi, the only premium luxury resort that’s both close to tourist-friendly areas of interest and the airport, is the perfect place to zone out in unabashed luxury. Tucked on the far end of a secluded beach, the resort offers unobstructed Andaman Sea views and miles of sandy beaches to dig your toes into. 

The art of indoor-outdoor living

The St. Regis LangkawiThe St. Regis Langkawi

The Pinterest-worthy interiors of The St. Regis Langkawi are designed around central themes that echo the island’s biodiversity, be it ocean, mountain or rainforest. Although every aspect has been elevated to utter grandeur, the stylistic and architectural choices constantly remind you of your destination; this property is uniquely Langkawi.

Outside, down near the shore, palm trees sway in the breeze and frame the infinity pool as it drops off into sparkling ocean views. It's every bit as picture-perfect as it sounds.

Suite dreams

The St. Regis LangkawiThe St. Regis Langkawi

Premier rooms, where ocean-facing, highlight the glistening water with unobstructed views from a generous 10 m² square balcony. Garden-facing rooms invite guests to peep into the rainforest through lattice woodwork arches. 

The St. Regis LangkawiThe St. Regis Langkawi

Luxury Suites and villas, for that special occasion or once-in-a-lifetime trip, invite you to star in your own opulent fantasy, complete with glass floors and a private swimming pool. But it's the small touches, like fresh cut local flowers and sun care concierge services, that inject a Malay hospitality that's hard to beat.

Retreat into the rainforest

Langkawi: The Hidden Malay Paradise You've Been Daydreaming AboutFlickr/WIL (CCby2.0)

Although guests often won't want to leave the splendour of the resort, Langkawi offers a wide variety of attractions.

Take for example, the Langkawi SkyBridge. This 125-metre curved bridge suspends visitors 100 breathtaking metres above the jungle canopy.  Have a peek through the glass-bottom window - if you dare. 

Fancy a jungle swim? Make for Telaga Tujuh Waterfalls, otherwise known as the Seven Wells. A dip in these natural pools is the perfect way to cool off after the 638-step hike it takes to reach them. 

UNESCO declared the Langkawi archipelago a Global Geopark in 2007. To see exactly why it made the grade, take a stroll along the mangrove boardwalks of Kilim Karst Geoforest Park.

Malaysian cuisine: melting pot of flavours

The St. Regis LangkawiThe St. Regis Langkawi

After a day exploring the island, you’ll need to refuel.

Malaysian cuisine is a blend of different traditions imported from ports all over South East Asia. Palates are pleased by a cornucopia of fresh seafood, fragrant curries, rice and noodle dishes. My favourite: beef rendang, a slow cooked curry with kaffir lime leaves and coconut.

The St. Regis LangkawiThe St. Regis Langkawi

The St. Regis honours the roots of Malaysian cuisine whilst introducing modern fusion elements in what it calls a “reinterpretation” of traditional regional cooking. The over-water dining concept is five-star sophistication at its very best. Executive Chef Gaetan Biesuz of Kayu Puti Speciality Restaurant leads the way with inventive plating that looks so artistic, it’s almost too good to eat. (Not that it has ever stopped me.)

Decadent rituals seep into the space between meals. Fill your lazy days in paradise observing afternoon tea (a tradition that nods to Malaysia's British colonial influences), cocktail hour with a Malaysian tamarind twist to a Bloody Mary, and the elegance of brandy and bonfires, an evening beach tradition.

What's paradise without wellness? 

lavendar milk spa

The scent of coconut always makes me think of Malaysia, an evocative experience that is mirrored in the Bath Beyond spa treatment you can request right in your own room. A coconut milk and lavender-infused bath will be drawn for weary travellers to renew their spirits while they sip on an accompanying warm coconut milk refreshment.

Pinch me, I'm in paradise!

 

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The St. Regis Langkawi sounds like a fantasy,  
but it doesn't have to be just a day dream...

With over 1,300 Starwood hotels and resorts across the globe to choose from, there’s a property to suit every passion. By using the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express, you can earn Starpoints faster and redeem for free nights at eleven distinct brands including The St. Regis Langkawi, part of The Luxury Collection. You can also earn a limited time welcome bonus of 25,000 Starpoints. Offer ends October 18th, 2017.

           

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