Conrad Koh Samui

Conrad Koh Samui

Sometimes you book a resort to get away from the daily landscapes and the usual sights. You are not so interested in getting out to explore the area so the location becomes less relevant. It is then that the resort’s amenities, the facilities and, perhaps, the view, become key. As does the company.

After five years living in Singapore, I had not managed to go to Koh Samui. The price was never right and there wasn’t an appealing and magnetic reason to go, so I kept postponing it. In the long Diwali weekend, I finally made up my mind and decided to head to Koh Samui. Knowing Alex’s excitement for the Conrad, we booked a pool villa.

Conrad Koh Samui

Conrad Koh Samui

The resort looked stunning. The pool villas and the infinite views over the islands in the Gulf of Thailand made for a picture perfect view. In the laad-up to the trip, I read Ben Schlappig’s review and, even with his high well-known snobbish standards and extreme penchant for luxury, he, too, was impressed, so I knew I was in for a treat.

Continue reading for the insider views on staying at Koh Samui’s most beautiful and luxurious property and one with one of the most impressive views in Southeast Asia: The Conrad Koh Samui.

Arrival and Check-in

Conrad Koh Samui Pool Villas

Conrad Koh Samui Pool Villas

The resort is perched on the side of a cliff, literally, and away from any civilization. You could come here and never see a local Thai person.

Now take a second to fully grasp this.

You could be in Thailand or you could be in Benidorm, for all intents and purposes. You are far away from any interference and all there is is the lush greenery and the complete seclusion of an inaccessible resort.

The villas jot out of the cliff wall into the void and hang on top of concrete legs. To reach the lobby, you must drive all the way to the top of the cliff on a series of zigzagging turns. Arrival is dramatic as you peek your head down to the rows of pool villas below.

The reception is open, sleek and modern. As it was late when we arrived, we were handed wet towels and a beautiful lemongrass drink to enjoy while we signed all the check-in paperwork. Within a few minutes, we were escorted to the buggy that would take us down, through a series of snaking paths, to our room. The descend was exhilarating, not least because the views from the reception down into the pool villas had built-up an anticipation and I was ready to step into our dream villa. It all looked slightly unreal. I almost needed to be pinched. Alex will know that I tried to hold my breath as I didn’t want to look like a child with a new toy.

The pool villas at Conrad Koh Samui

Conrad Koh Samui pool villa

Conrad Koh Samui pool villa

All villas are the same except for the larger family villas which have two levels and a living room for families to get together. There is also a Royal Villa, go figure how splendid that one may be.

Each of the pool villas had a 10m infinity pool with views into the ocean. The sunsets from the pool edge were spectacular.

Inside, the space was large with two clearly separated areas. The bedroom, with a king size bed, a desk, a TV and a sofa, was decorated in earthy tones and felt very warm. The bathroom, across sliding doors, was almost as large as the bedroom and had a free standing circular bathtub that looked like a cereal bowl and had the same views as the pool, his and hers sinks and mirrors and pale marble walls and floors providing a sense of continuity. The bathtub could easily fit a few people, I couldn’t reach the other end of it with my feet when sitting in it.

The space flowed really well and the bright colors were punctuated by dashes of purple orchids. Did I mention that the bathtub had a TV? That’s right. There was a subtly hidden TV screen in front of the bathtub, should you prefer the modern day amenities to the stunning sunset… Not me.

Conrad Koh Samui bathroom

Conrad Koh Samui bathroom

The walk in closet had enough coat hangers for us both to neatly hang our clothes so they would not get wrinkled. It also provided us with enough space to lay out all our suitcases, the drone case and everything else in a tidy manner, even if I am not the tidiest of persons.

All of the villas face the sunset, and that is a treat. I could go on and on about it. Seeing the sun slowly descending was simply beautiful, one of the most romantic sunsets I have ever seen.

The villas were, no doubt, the best there is on Koh Samui. They were large, they were perfectly crafted and they were full of small details. The controls were easy to find and operate and you could plug your iPhone/iPod or play any movie from the Apple TV. The WiFi was strong and it covered the entire resort. Even when we were in the buggy going up and down, the signal never dropped. That was some pretty impressive set up they had.

When we arrived, we had a fruit bowl with a colorful dragon fruit and a mango and beautiful macarons in pretty pastel colors, shame neither of us is a fan! There was a welcome letter and a pretty turtle paperweight which I took home – a small Conrad tradition. I have collected various little animal teddy bears from a few Conrad Resorts and I already have a crab, a nemo and now a turtle.

Conrad Koh Samui Bathtub

Conrad Koh Samui Bathtub

The walls of each villa and the vegetation were built in a way where privacy was almost entirely guaranteed but I would not recommend dipping into your pool naked because it is easy to be seen by the neighbors around if they walk to the end of the pool’s edge, or above you, an angle we would never think to check.

The facilities

The villas are scattered along a fairly stretched out area so you never felt like there are any other guests and, since the villa pools are so impressive, there is hardly any reason to venture out into the common areas. Not that they were uninviting.

The swimming pool was fancy, with glass walls through which you could see the beach, one level down. There were sun loungers sunken in the pool water edge and cabanas where to relax protected from the sun. It was private and secluded, like everything else in the resort.

Conrad Koh Samui hammocks

Conrad Koh Samui hammocks

At the lowest level laid the two beaches. A first one, slightly above the water, with a sandy and grassy area, and a second one, a few steps down a wooden staircase. The “real beach” was relatively narrow and could be washed away by the high tide but it was perfect when we were there. In the shallow waters by the beach there are two hanging hammocks in the water and two floating platforms where two sun loungers had strategically been placed. From there, you could admire the beauty and incredible architecture of the resort. The beach faces a few of the islands and islets.

The hotel provides a free snorkeling service to a nearby island on the resort’s speedboat twice daily and that beach, although we didn’t heck it out, seemed to be quite pretty.

Conrad Koh Samui beach

Conrad Koh Samui beach

There is also the usual gym and a magnificent spa with the same views and on the top level. We did not try it out but it had good reviews for the usual hotel price of $100 per hour.

Conrad Koh Samui pool

Conrad Koh Samui pool

The resort had a few scheduled activities like yoga and boxing in the boxing ring by the artificial beach stretch. A few people were trying their luck at beating the instructor while we were enjoying our breakfast, I thought I had made a much better choice

The food

Jahn Conrad Koh Samui

Jahn Conrad Koh Samui

Conrad Koh Samui has three restaurants and a great room service. Given the isolation of the place you are not likely to venture out unless you have a car. And even then, the resort is so inviting and romantic that you will be hard pressed to miss sunsets there.

Zest is the breakfast venue and it is also open for lunch and dinner. It has both an indoor and outdoor area and it is about half way down from the reception area. The breakfast spread was rather short. I was a bit surprised by this. Not that it was bad, but for a resort of this cache I was expecting the breakfast to be mind blowing. It was good, but it had nothing that I and never seen before and it did not surprise me in any way. Let me be clear here, I enjoyed the smoothies and the waffles looked fabulous. Being a croissant connoisseur, I will say the pastries were good. But there was nothing that was impressive. I am trying to be picky here because of the room rate and because I had to find something to fault the resort on! There was an egg and waffle/pancake station and a menu to choose cooked options like eggs. Chinese and Thai options were also available and several tiny bite sized canape-style concoctions were neatly placed in the wall’s shelves. The fresh juices and banana/strawberry smoothies wee divine.

We had dinner at Zest to a mix of international and local dishes. Stick to the Thai options and you will be fine, they were delicious.

There are two other dining options, Azore by the pool, were lighter dishes were available, and Jahn, the fine dining venue on the hill.

Azore Conrad Koh Samui

Azore Conrad Koh Samui

Azore is informal and offers cabana dining, a great option for a private and romantic dinner under the stars or for a lazy lunch in the sun. The menu had salads, sandwiches and other light options and a long cocktail list for a pool umbrella drink. The staff were remarkably friendly and helpful, even taking the mosquito repellent and spraying my legs for me.

Jahn was formal, think shirts and jackets, necessary given the strong AC, and offered a la carte and a degustation dinner menu. The chef re-interprets Thai dishes with a fine-dining approach. Presentation matched the style and the price. The resort offers complimentary pick up and drop off service from other resorts to Jahn as it is one of the few fine-dining options on the island and the Conrad Koh Samui is pretty far away from everywhere. Jahn had pretty sunset views so it was a god idea to come before dinner to see the sun come down at the open air sofas in front of the restaurant. The set-up was cozy and romantic with dimmed lights and darker black and golden tones. It was refined Thai food with international influences. It was good, and a welcome to the rest of the more casual settings, but it was a tad expensive. On Saturday night there were fireworks on the beach which could be seen from anywhere in the resort.

The service

Conrad Koh Samui pool

Conrad Koh Samui pool

As soon as we arrived and I realized that we would need a buggy to go everywhere (do not attempt to walk, even if it is just a few metes away, the steep incline will make you sweat straightaway), I was a slightly worried. Having been to a fair amount of resorts where you need the staff to pick you up and drop you off everywhere I get claustrophobic and stressed when I have to call, wait, call again, complain, etc. At the Conrad there was none of that. Every time we called the buggy, or we needed one, it would magically and quickly appear from somewhere. The resort had a real fleet of them and they were never too far away. That made the stay really convenient.

All our dealings with the staff, including a time when our WiFi stopped working or when we needed to order fresh ice and a bucket for our prosecco, were perfect. Everything was delivered with high speed and diligence and they were excellently trained and very friendly.

The verdict

Conrad Koh Samui sunset

Conrad Koh Samui sunset

What can I say. This was a sublime stay. The service was personal, swift and great. The food was good and enjoyable and the pool villas were just superb. There are few words one can use to describe the place, best is that you just look at the photos. And yes, everything else that you may need will also be of the same luxury and professional service as the views. If you are going to Koh Samui for a romantic getaway, Conrad Koh Samui is the place to go, for those views will make you fall in love again.

 

  • Alana

    This Conrad is amazing! I love all the little lux details. Plus, the hammocks and floating platforms are genius!

  • That looks amazing! Those hammocks look too inviting. What a great find x

  • Carol

    Wow, this looks absolutely amazing. And near Singapore!!! Definitely an oasis from the busy city!

  • I’m really impressed. The island is amazing, no doubts, but this resort, I’m speechless! I’d be happy to spend there a few days! 😀

  • The hammocks are such a nice touch. Personally, though, I don’t know that I’d ever leave the tub. I’m a sucker for a glorious soak in a luxurious tub. I’ve read some of your other posts about hotel stays and each time unbelievably the place seems to get better! Lucky for me with this one, it’s a Hilton property so there’s hope I could redeem points for a stay!

  • Elaine J Masters

    I visited Koh Samui decades ago before this level of luxury was available, to the public at least, I would’ve wanted beach access to snorkel but imagine it was a short ride away. Romantic!

  • I have been to Thailand twice but never made it to Koh Samui. This post has certainly changed my mind and I will certainly head back to Thailand and Koh Samui for some luxury at some time in my life. If you don’t mind me asking what was the approx price for a night??

  • Nomadic Boys

    This looks just incredible! The bath photos and that infinity pool shot. I wanna lay in that beach hammock all day long…..

  • I was going to ask how you took the 1st photo under “The Room” above, then I read about the drone case. Nice! The resort looks seriously amazing! But then I suppose, that’s what you can expect of a Conrad. Totally love the private pool and hammock and loungers on the water.

  • Jen Ryder

    It can be hard shopping for travelers, but this is a great list! We would love that laundry line and a Scrubba! May need to send this to our families for inspiration 🙂

  • iluv2globetrot

    Oh wow I Loved Koi Samui. Went for a full moon party once a few years back and now I Totally want to get back so I can stay here, fantastic!

  • Jen Ryder

    This place looks incredible!! A private infinity pool on a cliff overlooking the ocean-now that’s paradise. You always find the best spots!

  • Lesley

    I’m so in love with this place! Nothing catches my eye like an infinity pool, especially when it’s private. That last sunset photo looks like an ad or a movie set.

  • Karilyn (NoBackHome)

    Love the Conrad! We wanted to stay at their Maldives location, but couldn’t. This one looks just as fabulous as that. On the to do list!

  • Laura Lynch

    What a gorgeous resort! The villas are so modern and luxurious and the grounds are quite extensive. I’d definitely stay there!

  • Elegance, luxury, style, and a perfect location… who could ask for better! I imagine it was very hard to leave!

  • Nancy

    Wow! The Conrad Koh Samui looks fabulous! I am about to stay at the Four Seasons Koh Samui and I hope it is as nice as the Conrad. The hammocks and floating platforms look like great places to relax, although I’m not sure I would be able to tear myself away from the luxurious villa and private pool!

  • Brianna @ The Casual Travelist

    The view from the infinity pool is definitely one I could get used to. Where there any activities besides yoga and boxing on the resort?

  • Buddy The Traveling Monkey

    I think the small details are so important. I get so happy when there are enough hangers in a room! lol And of course the sunsets are great too 😉

  • Holly

    That looks like the ultimate room to have, a pool right outside the room. And the hammock in the water is epic.

  • Girl Unspotted

    Love all the photos! Do you use a drone to take your photos? I think I see a guy holding one, is that what I think it is?

  • Jenna

    Looks like a great hotel! Those pools definitely look amazing. I would love to paddle out to that little raft you were on–how fun!!

  • Megan Claire

    Wow Mar, this looks incredible. My biggest question is how you got the photo of you on the side of the pool looking into the room!! Seriously…WOW!

    What a perfect place for an escape – granted, I would probably want some time set aside for immersing myself into the Thai culture and meeting some of the local people, though that’s not to say you can’t enjoy a retreat and then spend some time ina more local setting.

    And it’s good to read that there are ample buggy’s and that they’re available for you whenever you need them. I have similar claustrophobic fears – don’t like feeling like I’m trapped in a place.

    Can’t wait to plan a stay!

  • What a resort! I’ve never been in an infinity pool – so to have one to yourself sounds incredible! Sometimes you have to really get away from it all, and I’ve heard that Thailand can get extremely hectic!

  • Gemma

    Such luxury! I am extremely jealous of your stay in Koh Samui. Did you love flying into Koh Samui with Big Buda in the skyline? One of my favourite flights.

  • I definitely prefer beach over pool, but in this kind of surrounding I wouldn’t mind spending some time in a pool. And the hammocks in water – awesome!

  • What a luxurious experience. It’s always nice to treat oneself and enjoy the finer things. The pictures are amazing. The infinity pool….divine!!! Lucky you!

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  • Himanshu Barsainya

    Incredible. I am in awe. I have to be there 🙂

  • This looks like an amazing place!! So luxurious and well-placed. I’ll definitely be taking note of this! Thanks for sharing us your experience.

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