Marking the final phase of its maiden voyage, InterContinental Khao Yai Resort features 19 suites and villas, housed inside repurposed historic carriages. A spa, French bistro and cocktail bar have also been revealed, also housed in repurposed carriages, hailing from across the country.
The train carriage suites tell the story of Khao Yai during the era of King Rama V, when the region was a gateway for train travel to northeast Thailand and surrounding destinations: Sri Lanka, India, Hanoi, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Yangon, Luang Prabang, Saigon, Phnom Penh, Chiang Rai, Khon Kaen, Songkhla, Sukhothai, and Chanthaburi; these journeys became the inspiration for the design of each of the train car designs.
Each carriage is uniquely designed and named after a different destination, transporting you to the glamor of rail travel of yesteryear. Set around a lake, the well-appointed 47-square-meter suites are elevated for a train-like experience, with a comfortable bed, bathroom, and walk-in closet. The rich paneling, cleverly crafted to emulate the original carriage windows, is complemented by scenic wallpapers and ambient backlighting that evoke the feeling of rolling countryside vistas. In each carriage, delicate bespoke fabrics from famed Thai silk company Jim Thompson further add to the uniquely Thai locale feel. All rooms also feature outdoor spaces, be it a balcony, terrace, or a private plunge pool, as in all four of the Heritage Railcar 1 Bedroom Pool Villas (116 m2) and the Heritage Railcar Two-Bedroom Pool Villa (223 m2), giving guests the opportunity to be closer to nature.
Passionate about fusing storytelling with restoration and construction in a way that preserves nature, designer Bill Bensley brought back train carriages from all over Thailand; some of them had not been used for more than 50 years, and Ficus trees had taken root on the roof, almost completely enveloping the carriage. Some of the root systems have been preserved, furthering the feeling of being connected to Mother Earth.
In addition to the Villas and Suites, two additional dining concepts have opened. Poirot it’s an elegant French concept with a succinct menu that focuses on memorable tastes and flavors, while a tableside cocktail trolley evokes first-class train travel of days gone by. Signatures include soup a la oignonclassic slow-cooked French onion soup with beef broth and caramelized onions, served with grilled marrow and Gruyère cheese; Boeuf Bourguignon, a standard of French cuisine elevated here with Australian Wagyu beef tenderloin (8/9 marbled score) braised in rich red wine sauce and served with mashed potato, pearl onion and streaky smoked bacon; and traditional Savarin Cake with a touch of Poirot with macadamia nuts, vanilla ice cream, 70% dark chocolate sauce and a Cognac flambé.
Located inside the adjoining recycled train car is Papillon Bar, a lively and flirty bar with a name that means butterfly in French. Classic French cocktails are at the forefront of the drink offerings, while a selection of champagne, fine wines and whiskeys are also on display.
Back on track: Spa at InterContinental Khao Yai Resort embrace the tranquility of Khao Yai’s abundant nature. Housed within an old recycled railcar, the spa features four luxurious, self-contained treatment rooms where highly-trained therapists deliver a variety of treatments using Siam Botanicals’ natural and 100% certified organic skincare products. Treatments include organic facials, full body massages, full body scrubs, full body wraps, relaxing bath experiences, hair treatments, and even a junior spa experience. Drawing on traditional Thai remedies, the traditional healing full body massage harnesses the healing properties of ginger and plai root, which have been used for centuries to relieve muscle tension and improve mobility. The Coastal Breeze bath experience uses rich organic oils, coastal sea salt from Thailand, and complementary essential oils of rosemary and peppermint to promote a deep sense of well-being.
InterContinental Khao Yai Resort planet walkers The program is designed to keep little explorers entertained. Suitable for guests ages 4 to 12, the activities are designed to educate and excite children, allowing them to connect with nature and learn more about the history of the Khao Yai area. A scavenger hunt in the Botanical Gardens allows children to identify the resort’s flora and fauna, while an expedition to the miniature garden teaches them the importance of sustainably sourced ingredients. Thai dance, koi fish feeding and origami making classes are also offered.
The resort opened earlier this year with 45 rooms in the main buildings, a Cross-Fit-inspired gym, and a series of exploratory adventures for guests. Also unveiled were Somying’s Kitchen, a farm-to-table dining concept, and Tea Carriage, which offers formal afternoon tea.
InterContinental Khao Yai Resort, an IHG hotel
Khao Yai, 30450
+66 44 082 039