Splendid and superb Sri Panwa…

Story & photos by Dr. Michael Lim The Travelling GourmetTM

Copyright All rights reserved

Photos are of REAL food with no photoshop

MAN’S lust for gold is the theme in the iconic “Sphagetti Western” “The Good The Bad and the Ugly. Square-jawed, laconic Clint Eastwood was the Good. On a recent gastronomic escapade in Asia, the indomitable Travelling Gourmet landed on the island of Phuket, the dream destination of many Europeans to encounter…

MAYHEM and bedlam on Patong Beach…

Latitude: 7°53′45″ N Longitude: 98°17′47″ E

Sailing through choppy waves, my small boat heaved to a pier attached to a long rickety jetty. I had boarded the tender boat from Deck 1 of the majestic Mariner of the Seas. Deck 1 is just above the water line. The majestic Mariner of the Seas cruise ship of the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, was anchored some distance from Patong Beach in deep waters. With a ship’s population of over 5,000 passengers and crew…getting a spot on a boat for ‘shore leave’ was a complicated affair…The Mariner is bigger than some small towns in Europe. For example, my beloved Cison di Rolle, high in the mountains near the Dolomites has a population of only 76. It is the heart of Prosecco di Valdobbiadene and Cartize and Bisol…but I digress…

Disembarking is actually a very hazardous process. The gangway down is very steep and if wet, very slippery. A bad fall and you could break a leg or worse. Moreover, the step from temporary jetty to the bobbing tender boat is also somewhat dicey, especially for the unfit and infirm and elderly. The boat with its Thai crew sped nonchalantly off through the choppy waters towards Patong Beach…


I walked very carefully on the swaying jetty to the end where it met the main road. This road runs alongside Patong Beach. The sun shone strongly. The sky was blue. The tropical heat hit me like a Kung Fu punch from Donnie (Ip Man) Yen. Patong Beach was standing room only. To say crowded would be an understatement…The hustlers, pimps and unlicensed pirate-taxi touts swarmed around me. It reminded me of the famous song, “Lola” by Marlene Dietrich…Maenner umschwirren mich wie Motten um das Licht…”(Men flutter to me like moths to the flame…translated from the German) If they had been aesthetically advantaged blond Italian or Spanish ladies…I would not have minded, but…

“Sawasdee kraap…mi dai…mi dai, karuna…” I told them politely but firmly. Many, many times. It worked for most of the natives and riff-raff, but one persisted. He was scruffy and looked like a Mexican bandido. Maybe he was one…in a previous life. He did not get it…until I was compelled to take extreme measures…Extreme measures always work. Unpleasant for those on the receiving end…

So ist das Leben.

I found refuge in the “grand” Rayaburi Beach Club. It is the kind of no-star hotel beloved of budget, bare-chested, unshaven, uncouth, poorly educated, frequently drunk Australian tourists and hippies. MERCENARY Mosquitoes buzzed around me like vultures, looking for a quick bite. I was thirsty. I had to converse in Thai with the young lady in the Monkey bar next door. Her features were nice…she would have looked attractive 10 years ago. For some US Dollars in cash, she sold me a chilled bottle of Minere mineral water. She added on a tip for herself. It was daylight robbery…but if I had not been able to speak Thai it would have cost much more…Mai pen rai…(it means ‘never mind’ in Thai)

A few calls and I arranged salubrious transportation to a most delightful place..that I shall tell you about…

far, far, from the madding crowd.


Dr. Michael Lim The Travelling GourmetTM finds paradise far from the madding crowd of hoi polloi on Patong Beach in the…

MARVELLOUS…serene and splendid Sri Panwa Resort. It is quite far from the main tourist areas full of wierdos, hustlers, pimps and filles des joie. About 1 hour 38 minutes drive up to the cool mountains.

A thing of beauty is a joy forever…


Here, perched on top of Cape Panwa like a free-wheeling Maltese falcon is a resort that brought tears of joy to my eyes on seeing it! Especially after the chaos and mayhem on Patong Beach. The pools, the villas, the food, the service so good yet unobtrusive…what is there not to like??? One swim is NEVER enough in the 25m infinity-edge Lap Pool where you feel like you have come to a tropical Utopia where time stands till…The architect who designed this resort is a Genius! The food is authentic Thai cuisine at the Baba Pool Club cooked happily with passion by a real Thai lady momma Chef! The Pad Thai with fettucine like rice noodles and seafood plus peanuts, raw bean sprouts and granulated sugar for you to add to taste, is excellent. As is the Tom Yam Goong or sour and very spicy soup with succulent seafood and lots of zesty, zingy lemongrass and chillies! I also adore the sweet and spicy dipping sauces with ueber-crispy rice crackers, and the nourishingly healthy Green Papaya Salad. Beware, the Thai dishes are prepared for local tastes…so if you can’t take too hot & spicy or too sour food, please advise the service staff when you order. This is a plus point in my book! It’s authentic! Thai food has extremes in terms of flavour profile. Thais like very sweet, very sour, very spicy and very salty, not necessarily in that order.

I know, because I trained in Thai cuisine at the renowned Mandarin Oriental Hotel School of Thai Cooking in Bangkok and also in Chiangmai. For Japanese food lovers, there is SAS aka Sushi and Sashimi…ocean-fresh! Indulge too in sweet Thai temptations like “Red Rubies” and exquisitely cute jellies and cakes made with Mung bean and sexy coconut cream. Stewed Banana with Ice Cream spiked with Baileys Irish Cream Liquer is intoxicating Ha! Ha!

As Arnold Schwarzenegger said in “The Terminator” : I’ll be back…” 🙂


Tel: 76-371000

88 Moo 8 Sakdidej Rd, Tambon Vichit,



Baba Pool Club Restaurant is excellent for casual dining and authentic Thai specialities


Foreign tourists aka “farang” in Thai who have NO appreciation or respect for Thai culture, food and traditions…and their own Thai people who are willing to sell and exploit whatever they have to sell…for the mighty Yankee dollar or Euros…A wise man once said: law is born from despair of human nature. C’est la vie…

At this link you can ENJOY watching the classic Spaghetti Western starring The Man with NO Name…Clint Eastwood in…

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (Extended Version)



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About thetravellinggourmet

As a renowned Travel, Food & Wine Writer he has travelled the world in a keen & indomitable pursuit of exotic delicacies & fine wines. His articles have been published in over 20 prestigious publications, both local & international. Dr. Lim has toured and trained in Wine Evaluation & Oenology in most of the world's top wine producing areas from France to Australia. The Travelling Gourmet says, "Gastronomy has no frontier. These are the gastronomic voyages of The Travelling Gourmet. My unending mission. To explore strange new cuisines, to seek out new wines and new culinary experiences, to boldly go where no gourmet has gone before...." Have pen, will travel. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any other information storage & retrieval system, without permission from Dr. Michael Lim The Travelling Gourmet and/or MSN. Material may be works of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents may be true but may also be products of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance whatsoever to actual person or persons, either dead or living, events, or locales may be entirely and purely coincidental and unintentional. No part of this website may be used to villify others or for criminal purposes. Interests: Travel, Food, Wines, Cooking, Wine Appreciation, Parachuting, Languages, Music, Reading, Swimming, Hunting, Ballet, Fencing, Archery, Anthropology and more... The Travelling Gourmet is a copyrighted trademark. All rights and photos reserved. No part may be reproduced without permission.
This entry was posted in Commercialism & Hypocrisy, Entertainment, Fabulous Food and Gorgeous Drinks, Food and drink, Friends & Comrades, Gourmet cuisine, Hotels & Resorts, Language learning, Let them eat Cake..., Materialismus, Nobody's perfect..., Philosophy, Snacks & Little Bites, Travel, Voyages and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Splendid and superb Sri Panwa…

  1. Reblogged this on The Travelling Gourmet and commented:

    Watch the classic movie that brought Clint Eastwood to Super-Star status! It’s The Good The Bad and The Ugly!


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