by Mick & Di, The Food Lovers
Centra Maris is the younger sibling of the mighty Centara Grand Mirage. It’s a young funky hotel nestled close by to Na Jomtien Beach and is already receiving compliments and good reviews. It’s a striking structure, modern in the extreme complete with dramatic waterfalls, bars and restaurants and with a positive family-friendly ethos.
Coco & Rum Restaurant & Bar is the latest food outlet to open. It is located adjacent to the spectacular lagoon-shaped swimming pool and presents a modern eatery offering a range of Thai and western favourites. It was here that Mick and I were invited recently to taste their Friday and Saturday night special tapas table and contemporary a la carte menu.
Friday and Saturday nights from 6 to 10 pm the central table at Coco & Rum is laden with its innovative tapas-style buffet. It’s a sensational sight, polar fresh seafood such as scallops, calamari, and mussels join a first-rate selection of hand-rolled sushi, freshly cut sashimi plus salmon, poached sea bass, fish mousse with prawns and seared tuna. Salads abound with various pastas, plus there’s Italian cold cuts the likes of salami, prosciuttos, mortadella and all sorts of other treats including a feast of single bite delicacies. It really is an amazing spread and that’s before you savour the delights of the homemade desserts. Jellies, crème caramel, cakes, and lots more beautifully constructed confections make for a sugarista’s dream. The cost of this gourmet feast is B.385 net and if you choose to enjoy a main course to boot the price is only B.285 extra.
The a la carte menu definitely has a touch of whimsy about it with playful descriptions and imaginative presentations. “The Chill Element” lists items called Beneath my Wings (coriander battered chicken wings served with homemade sweet chilli sauce) or Burning Lips (raw Pacific salmon with chilli, garlic, lemongrass and tangy lime). Salads are deconstructed paying special attention to the classic elements but served with Chef Pie’s zoosh of playfulness. I plumped for Samurai Salmon while Mick opted for the Wild Pork chop. Both were exceedingly good. The tempura battered fish fell in shards under the fork and the butter crushed potatoes were particularly scrumptious as were the slow-roasted herbed potatoes that accompanied Mick’s Kurobuta grilled chop. There’s a potato wizard at work in this kitchen. To round off a splendid dinner we shared a wickedly good double chocolate brownie with homemade vanilla ice cream.
We were staying the night at the hotel so having been superbly fed and watered we made our way to our room on the 7th floor. There are 282 suites and rooms at Centra Maris, all designed with modern, clean lines, neutral, muted colours, big contemporary bathrooms with baths and state-of-the-art showers plus all the expected amenities including complimentary internet access.
Breakfast next morning contained everything you could possibly want. Freshly brewed coffee and tea, an efficient egg station, noodles with all the add-ons, rice congee, salads and cold meats, fresh fruit, yoghurts, and so much more. Hot, flaky croissants are my delight and these in-house pastries were just perfect accompanied by home-made conserves and creamy butter. Across the table all was well with Mick tucking into eggs and crispy bacon for a mid-week treat.
Centra Maris hits all the spots for an affordable family-orientated beach resort. The contemporary décor and relaxed ambiance makes it a very special place. The standard of cuisine is first-rate and the diversity of the accommodation makes for a very agreeable lifestyle complex.
Centra by Centara Maris Resort Jomtien is located adjacent to Na Jomtien Beach.