The Pavilion, Langkawi

The Pavilion, Thai Restaurant, Langkawi

Arriving at dusk, The Pavilion is alive with chatter from the jungle. A family of shy dusky leaf monkeys is nestled in a tree less than a metre from our table: we can almost reach out and touch them. Birds are calling, insects are chirping and the air is crisp following the afternoon tropical storm. It’s a remarkable location and we’re thankful for the chance to experience such natural beauty in such a luxurious setting.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
Surrounded by Jungle
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
Table for Two
Award winning Thai cuisine is found in the open-walled Pavilion. Seeming to float at the same level as the rainforest canopy, this wooden stilt structure gifts views not only of verdant treetops, but too of the calm Andaman Sea and further out to the Thai Tarutao islands.
Linking the not-too-distant archipelago to the current location are soft Thai tunes and gourmet Thai dishes that are just as much entertainment for the eyes as they are for the taste buds. The renowned freshness of this cuisine type and presentation in ceramic bowls and on hot plates is flaunted in every recipe.
Settling in, I order The Pavilion’s signature cocktail, the Ram Buh Thai (RM 45). White rum, egg white, lime juice and sugar syrup are blended together producing a white froth atop a sour reviving liquid. It resembles a Pisco Sour in both appearance and flavour. Thumbs up! Hubby goes with his predictable order of bubbly, a Barbier-Lemaire Prestige NV (RM 75), which keeps him happy as he sips from his flute feigning an air of sophistication.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
Ram Buh Thai Cocktail
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
We’re sipping and gawking at our incredible surrounds when an Amuse Bouche arrives reminding us that this location holds more allure than solely the environs. The lemongrass salad with anchovies wakes up our palates and leaves our tongues with a light tingle.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
Amuse Bouche
The meal officially underway, we switch to drinking a Wittmann Riesling Trocken 2012 from Rheinhessen (RM220 bottle). This versatile drop fares aptly across a variety of flavours and handles particularly well the zesty kick often found in Thai dishes. It mirrors some of the salads and starters with acidic flavours of lemon and lime, and produces welcome refreshment from the heavier saucy dishes cleansing our palates with a clean fruity finish.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
The Taste of Siam (RM75) demonstrates a cracking beginning as we get to sample a trio of starters. Adharn Thai Piseat Som Tam, brings young papaya salad in an edible cup. It’s tangy and reaches every nook of our mouths with its sharpness. It showcases the style of the restaurant, Thai cuisine from the south, which is less sweet and more spicy than recipes from the north.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
A Taste of Siam
Gai Hor Bai Toey, deep-fried pandanus wrapped chicken, is delicious! Meat from the chicken leg is marinated with oyster sauce, soya and pandan juice then sheathed in the leaves and deep-fried. The result is a charred exterior with moist succulent meat interior. It’s great on its own but dip the flesh in the ginger, soya and sesame seed sauce and our taste buds are doing a happy dance.
Poh Pia Goong, prawn spring rolls, are encased with crispy layers of pastry and stuffed to the edges with firm to the bite prawns. Another flawless example of a classic
recipe executed to perfection.
Tom Yam Goong (RM42), spicy prawn soup with abalone mushrooms, is served in a bowl held in a metal tripod. For such a small bowl it’s packed with springy superbly cooked prawns, verdant coriander and a rich red liquid. Nostrils cleared, tongues and lips prickling, smiles on our faces, we’ve accepted and devoured the challenge to the very last drop.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
Tom Yam Goong
The mains are about to arrive and hot ceramic plates are delivered to our places. It’s a small but important touch. When sharing dishes, food can get cold quite quickly, so the heated bases hold the warmth keeping our food hot for longer.
Pla Sam Rod (RM115), crispy fried snapper with three flavoured sauce, is presented on a long rectangular platter. Flaky white fillets are coated in a thin batter and crowned with a sweet, sour and spicy sauce. The moist fish is complemented wonderfully by the fruity sauce, and even though this is a large portion, not a bite is left at the end of the meal.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
Pla Sam Rod
Chu Che Goong Lai (RM95), deep-fried tiger prawns with kaffir lime leaf sauce are giant specimens. A decadent drizzle of coconut cream zig-zags the crest and is contrasted in colour and taste with vibrant pieces of the lime leaves. The curry is rich and flavoursome and we stretch the dish to its very last blob by soaking it up with the accompanying rice.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
Chu Che Goong Lai
A large pottery bowl holds Phad Phak Naam Man Hoi (RM36), stir-fried seasonal vegetables with oyster sauce. Their freshness makes a terrific break to the intensity of the sauces for the prawns and fish.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
Phad Phak Naam Man Hoi
There are over a handful of desserts on the menu but I simply can’t resist the classic of mango sticky rice, Khaw Neow Mamuang (RM28). Ripe yellow mango is sided with sticky rice rich with coconut milk and given a savoury splash with sesame seeds. It’s an excellent ending to an incredible experience.
The Pavilion, The Datai, Langkawi
Khaw Neow Mamuang
If you’re ever on the island of Langkawi, be sure to visit. Heck, plan to visit Langkawi so that you can eat here: food and setting are worth the air tickets.
Reasons to visit: stunning location; authentic southern Thai cuisine.
The Pavilion
The Datai
Jalan Teluk Datai
07000 Pulau Langkawi
Kedah Darul Aman
+6 04 9500 500
Open 6:30pm –
(Visited 110 times, 1 visits today)


  1. Thai? Count me in, I love Thai food. Incidentally, "datai" in our local Sarawak ethnic Iban language means "come".

  2. Nope – those monkeys are a bit TOO close for me to eat there.
    I don't want to take a chance with a possible monkey bite.
    Cerebral malaria and dengue fever – thanks to mosquitoes are
    bad enough in jungle / tropical settings – monkeys are another
    But the setting does look nice.

    • As I wasn't 100% sure where Langkawi was located – an island resort
      in the top of the Malaysian Federation – and just below the sea boundary
      with Thailand.
      Yes it would certainly be an exotic location and no doubt pricey????
      Colin (Brisbane.Australia)
      ps: Perfect summer like day today – short sleeves!!!!!

  3. Lovely ambiance and the presentations are beautiful!

  4. I like how the mango is used as a vessel to keep the coconut milk in! 😉

  5. The deep-fried tiger prawns look particularly appetizing! And that Sticky Rice Mango…mmmm!

  6. This hotel looks like a real foodie destination!

  7. The jungle description sounds interesting. Food looks wonderful. Don't care for eating so close to monkeys, even though I do like them..

  8. Thai food!
    My favourite 🙂

  9. I've been meaning to go to Langkawi for quite some time but just not got around to it.

    That mango sticky rice has recently become my favourite food – can eat that all day long!

    Duncan In Kuantan

  10. a genuinely romantic venue for a great thai meal! 🙂

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