Facilities? We’ll give you facilities. Apart from the home cinema, there’s a cigar smoking area in the wine cellar, a huge dedicated spa, a flat-screen TV in every room and, just quietly, a bowling alley is in the planning. It doesn’t stop there though; the three and five-bedroom villas have two pools each in addition to the communal pool. Kids will be in heaven with their dedicated playroom, which has slides, murals, games, books and not one but two games systems with a TV for each – could this concept of ‘no sharing’ perhaps be the secret to successful parenting?
Villas with ten bedrooms are very rare but offer wonderful potential for big get-togethers between groups of families or friends. They also make perfect corporate retreats. Ten bedroom villas are the best for hosting special events since space is at a premium and your invitees can actually stay in situ too.
The suites and communal areas are all exquisitely furnished and the entire property is incredibly well staffed. This means you can either choose your spot and stick to it, or make the most of what is essentially a millionaire's playground. Our host had plenty of people dropping in and out throughout the weekend, plus 20 of us staying over, so it was easy to drift between different scenes and social groups at will.
The poolside party included parents and kids, who tended to favour the sun deck and pool lounge, the drinkers meanwhile hung out in the club house bar with their ipods permanently plugged in to the Bose music system, the beach bums switched between the sand, the sea and the games room, while the inner circle often retreated with the birthday boy and his partner to the master YL Suite, which became affectionately known as "the lux lounge". Every space had its own dedicated staff with exquisite meals, snacks and a full range of drinks served at almost any hour. The barbecue was a particular treat and big enough for a banquet. Unequivocal extravagance!
As an extended party pad, YL Residence is hard to beat, but not everyone would choose to stay here on a wild weekend. Unofficially, it is the largest villa in Thailand so rock star connotations are virtually unavoidable, but the property also manages to hold onto its natural side thanks largely to the dramatic beachfront setting and the forest of coconut palms and casuarina trees that fill its grounds (a fellow guest suggested cutting a few of them down to build a 9-hole golf course!). Even for those on a more sedate holiday, the villa offers a one-of-a kind experience. The staff, cuisine and multitude of diversions make it a rounded luxury holiday haven. The only drawback being that without a gang of fellow guests to share its vastness, one could feel a little lonely and isolated.