The poolside vibes remain.

The two-decades-old Banyan Tree Phuket has given tired and old restaurant Tamarind the flick and replaced it with Taihei (, a similarly Japanese effort that claims to straddle the line between fine and casual dining.

Here, “contemporary Asian design” skews towards minimalism (blond wood and an aesthetically pleasing array of sake bottles). The poolside vibes remain.

Food sticks to this theme with veteran Kumamoto-hailing chef Shiraishi Kikuo doling out the full selection of sashimi, sushi and yakimomo (grilled and pan-fried dishes), as well as presiding over sushi and sake masterclasses (from B700). 

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