Social Media Savvy Resorts and Hotels around Southeast Asia
Holiday snaps have long been an integral part of the travel experience. But with “pics or it didn’t happen” being the mantra of the Instagram era, gathering visual documentation of leisure time has become a pressing priority for many. With this in mind, social media savvy resorts and hotels around Southeast Asia are going the extra mile to deliver specially curated photo opportunities that provide ample fodder for IG feeds.
Banyan Tree Samui
Nestled into a lush tropical hillside overlooking the Gulf of Thailand, the 38-acre property of Banyan Tree Samui is ripe for some of the most picturesque beach-and-sea views you can imagine. In fact, the resort has published its own “7 Photo Spots” brochure for guests to ponder ahead of arrival. From either of two restaurants or the reception area, the amateur photographer is blessed with a magnificent panoramic vista encompassing sapphire sea, a palm-fringed white-sand beach, a cove flanked by coral reefs, and the flora and greenery of the resort in the foreground. The more intrepid selfie-seeker can climb even higher to the hilltop where they can take in a sweeping 360-degree shot of the entire coastline. And if you’re shooting from your villa, you may be able to sneak in a cocktail-and-bikini moment from the edge of your private infinity pool.
Alma Cam Ranh
Alma this year clinched a coveted spot in ‘The Most Instagrammable Hotel in the World’; tens of thousands of readers of the well-respected United States-based website Luxury Travel Advisor voted Alma the winner of the Asia and Indian Ocean bracket, placing it in the poll’s top four resorts worldwide. And for very good reason. The resort is anchored by 12 swimming pools that cascade down to Long Beach, with sun loungers and cabanas dotted among them, that have attracted serious attention from a who’s who of Vietnamese celebrities. Singers Quang Vinh, Bao Thy, Dan Truong, and Trinh Thang Binh, actors Hoang Yen Chibi and Tuan Tran, power couple Thuy Tien and Cong Vinh and the ‘Xoai (Mango) Family’ are among many influencers who have shared Alma’s pools with their followers, resulting in countless guests replicating their popular images.
Hyatt Regency Koh Samui
The designers of the newly unveiled Hyatt Regency Koh Samui knew that snap-happy guests would find it hard to resist the visual allure surrounding them. Therefore, they baked in a Gallery of Eight, a collection of eight sites dotted around the property specially selected for their photogenic appeal. The property fully leverages the beauty of Koh Samui through its coastal location, incorporation of protected native yangna trees and numerous inspired architectural features. The latter includes a showpiece lobby—the starting point for the Gallery of Eight—where numerous skylights allow for natural illumination by the sun and the moon. Other likely photo ops include a valley that abounds with colourful tropical flora and the largest pool zone on the island, a collection of four pools, each cascading down from the main pool on the upper deck of the resort.
Tanah Gajah, a Resort by Hadiprana
Bali’s only hot air balloon rises over the verdant rice fields of Tanah Gajah, a Resort by Hadiprana, multiple times a day, and although the view from above ground is stunning (you can take in Mt Agung on a clear day) the most popular shot is just below with the impressive balloon in the background of a paddy-side picnic. World travelers and content creators, Giulia and Donato, of @_dgtravel_ are one of a number of visitors who captured the resort’s most insta-worthy moment for their feed.
Vietnam’s top actors, supermodels, and social media influencers have been flocking to Azerai Resorts’ three properties in Vietnam in recent years to stage fashion photo shoots amid the resorts’ colorful and picturesque backdrops. From celebrity Quynh Anh Shyn, with her 2.6 million Instagram followers, to international supermodel and singer Ha Anh Vu, and popular actress Le Ha Truc, these Vietnamese stars and others have treated their social media followers to gorgeous imagery, along with travel inspiration (these photos were all shot prior to the latest wave of pandemic lockdowns). Quynh Anh Shyn captured the multi-hued sunset overlooking the ocean from Azerai Ke Ga Bay’s beachfront pool. Le Ha Truc appeared on Azerai La Residence, Hue’s elegant new 55-foot (17-meter) riverboat as it plied the Perfume River at dusk. And Ha Anh Vu snapped a shot on Azerai Can Tho’s Mekong Delta cruise boat, with the 2.75-kilometre Can Tho Bridge in the background. The three Azerai properties in Vietnam are renowned for their natural surroundings.
Hyatt Regency Phnom Penh
One quick scroll through the Instagram hashtag of #HyattRegencyPhnomPenh, which opened in the Cambodian capital in January, brings up plenty of iconic snaps of the hotel’s stunningly revamped Colonial House entrance. Originally built as a secret villa for a princess in the early 20th century, the lemon-colored French heritage building with its wooden shutters, arched doorways, and terracotta-tiled roof has quickly become the property’s go-to selfie spot, thanks to a recent fashion shoot by SOVRIN Magazine, Cambodia’s top fashion glossy. The shoot features well-known Cambodian actress and model, San Kosamak, posing in a trenchcoat on the steps of the Colonial House, spawning a number of copycat photos on Instagram.