Atlantis Sanya

China’s tropical, family-friendly megaresort

Atlantis Sanya is China’s first and only Atlantis resort, located on the southern tip of Hainan Island facing the South China Sea. Specifically, the massive resort sits on Haitang Bay alongside several other luxury hotels, but visitors aren’t likely to mistake this dazzling property with another.

For one, the sheer size of it — the campus is spread out over 130 acres — dwarfs others, as do the countless activities travelers have come to associate with Atlantis resorts. There are impossibly tall twisting waterslides, marine mammal encounters, underwater guest suites, gigantic displays of aquatic life, pretty pristine pools, an AHAVA Spa, 21 different restaurants and a 52-story tower shaped like a sail.

Notice the aquatic theme? That’s no coincidence. The luxury resort leans heavily on sea-inspired imagery throughout, with design materials (silver leaf, mother of pearl) meant to glisten like water, ceiling panels that look like waves, green and gold marble floors, and the lobby’s giant wall of glass panels that open like fish gills.

Our Inspector's Highlights

  • Aquaventure Waterpark is rightfully one of the main attractions. The waterpark’s 50 acres are filled with adrenaline-pumping slides, a rushing rapids river, underwater tunnels, a wave pool and more for thrill-seekers of all ages.
  • Another family-friendly attraction is the enormous Lost Chambers Aquarium, where 86,000 marine animals reside. Inside, you’ll find an open-air aquarium with a 54-foot viewing panel for pointing out a variety of sharks, angelfish, stingrays and thousands of other colorful fish.
  • The Neptune Underwater Suites and the Poseidon Underwater Suites allow guests to experience life under the sea. Each has floor-to-ceiling windows in the bedrooms and bathrooms for exploring the depths of the aquarium from your private space.
  • At the Sanya hotel, guests can meet, greet and swim with dolphins, sea lions and even stingrays. Adventurous types can scuba in the open-air aquarium among the sharks and other fish.
  • If you’re longing for a little adults-only time, drop the kids off at Miniversity, the resort’s kids club. Activities, which range from arts and crafts to movies and animal encounters, vary throughout the day.

Things to Know

  • Hainan Island is often compared to Hawaii for its similar balmy weather, white beaches and palm trees — in fact, the two tropical hot spots are almost equal distances from the equator.
  • While Atlantis Sanya has a private beach, don’t be surprised if you gravitate toward the resort’s freshwater and saltwater pools.
  • The resort’s shopping mall, The Avenues, is a good place to pick up Atlantis-themed souvenirs, resort wear, toys, wellness products and gifts.
  • The focus here is on making family memories. Unlike some of China’s other megaresorts in Macau (about a four-hour flight away), the luxury hotel does not have a casino.

The Rooms

  • All of the 1,314 guest rooms have ocean views and a modern design aesthetic that reflects the resort’s sea-inspired theme. Expect airy, aqua tones and natural materials like marble and locally harvested woods.
  • Imperial and Royal suites provide panoramic water vistas, a formal dining room, a grand living room, a media room and stunning bathrooms with stand-alone tubs.
  • Guest rooms, in general, are on the larger size, ranging from 527 to 11,400 square feet. Standard amenities include Bluetooth speakers, soaking tubs and balconies.

The Restaurants

  • Famed chef Gordon Ramsay has an outpost of his buzzy Bread Street Kitchen & Bar at the Atlantis. Expect fish and chips, Ramsay’s famous beef Wellington and slow-roasted pork belly prepared in a sleek, warehouse-like setting.
  • Ossiano Restaurant & Bar is another remarkable underwater experience. With floor-to-ceiling window walls looking into the aquarium’s Ambassador Lagoon, you can stare at the fish between forkfuls of seafood pasta and lamb.
  • Asian delicacies can be found at Tang (Cantonese), Netsu (Japanese) and Crab Kitchen (Singaporean chili crab).
  • Other options — and there are plenty — include two buffet-style restaurants, a brewery, a food court, an ice cream shop and numerous lounges, including an outdoor tiki bar.

Fitness classes
Meeting rooms
Outdoor pool
Getting There
North Haitang Bei Road, Sanya, 572013 China
SYX (45 min)  
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