Bay of Bengal Resort on Ngwesaung beach is the place to stay if you want to get away from everything, yet have all you need within one sprawling seaside resort. Taking a right as you drive into the village of Ngwesaung, the quiet road soon leads to the Bay of Bengal Resort which is the most northerly accommodation on the beach.
Built in 2007, the Italian architect designed the reception building as a wide, open-plan structure with a breeze blowing in from the ocean. Through the reception area with in-house bakery, library and gift shop, you walk through a garden, past the dive centre and the sound of the waves crashing on the shore comes to your ears as you enter the restaurant.
The generous terrace space runs right down to the sand and the sea.
There are 62 rooms spread across a 14-acre site which fronts hundreds of metres of the coast line. All buildings are low-rise and surrounded by greenery. The Royal Bengal Villas are right on the beachfront with Bengal Suites and Deluxe rooms just behind them while the Garden View rooms overlook a water feature further inside the compound. The rooms themselves are a little dated in their decoration but all are very spacious and filled with natural light.
Every room has a balcony.
The facilities at the resort make it really stand out from others – a 24-hour clinic with resident doctor, tennis court and kids club with a supervised playroom on top of the expected spa and water sports. The resort is currently establishing an organic farm and cooking classes are available.
The resort’s Pier Restaurant is next to the beach and pool. By day, the high roof does provide shade and let the breeze in but the best time to be in the restaurant or out on the adjacent terrace is the evening – it’s perfect for cocktails and dinner while you watch the sun set over the rocks and endless ocean. The menu prices are quoted in US dollars and dishes are fairly expensive. Traditional dishes fried rice will cost around US$4 and if you want to indulge a little, a meal for two such as pepperoni pizza and crab masala with a bottle of Myanmar wine will come to around $60. The cocktail menu has a good selection of both classic and signature options and the Bartenders Special – a refreshing and zesty gin-based cocktail – is a top choice.
A favourite hangout spot is the open-air Fisherman Bar located hidden away at the back of the site at a distance from the other buildings. It’s easy to indulge yourself in a true tropical ambience sipping cocktails, playing pool and listening to live music in the palm tree surroundings. This is a real gem of a bar to have on the grounds and offers a casual escape from the typical resort vibe.
For daytime activities, the resort can arrange water sports along the beach, or to hire a boat out to a coral area for snorkeling or diving. Boat trips to nearby islands are a great way to spend a few hours as is a stroll to the village, which is about five minutes away.