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Confused: Where to stay?

Singapore, Singapore
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161 posts
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Confused: Where to stay?

Hi everyone

I'm planning to go Koh Samui with my fiance from 30th April (we should be arriving late at night as we're taking Bangkok Airways from Singapore) to 4th May.

I have read that May is the start of the rainy season but I'm not sure if it starts "pouring" the moment the month of May crosses over, so I thought we'll give it a shot/gamble. Any feedback on this is appreciated.

I'm having a headache deciding which hotel to book with. My options currently are (in no particular order):-

1) Anantara Resort and Spa - Bo Phut

2) Centara Grand Beach - Chaweng

3) Centara Samui Villas - Chaweng

4) Bo Phut Resort & Spa - Bo Phut

From what I've gathered online, Bo Phut beaches aren't that nice as the sand is quite coarse and some say the water isn't that clear. I haven't seen any feedback on Chaweng beach yet. However, I understand that Chaweng beach is like the HUB of Samui where most of the shops/restaurants are (I could be wrong, please correct me if I am :) or in short, where the action is. Am I right to liken Chaweng beach to say Patong beach of Phuket? Although I don't think Chaweng is THAT crowded compared to Patong?

I would like to stay in a hotel where beach access/front is available. would be a plus as well if the beach is clean. Given that the time that I'll be there is low season, I'm not too woried about the crowds. Can someone tell me if Chaweng beach is cleanar/better than Bo Phut or vice versa?

Any other hotel recommendation would be helpful as well. My budget for accomodation during this period is around SGD1,000, roughly SGD250/night.

Ko Samui, Thailand
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1. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

Ok, here you go... May is not really rainy season, it may rain occasionally but not more than any other month...Rainy season is at it's worst in November...May is HOT! Very hot indeed.

Chaweng beach is better than Bophut beach, but more busy. Same as Patong. You are exactly right on that one. Both beaches are pretty clean but Chaweng has better sand.

Chaweng has many restaurants but they are crap apart from one or two.Touristy places where staff don't care about quality even if it may look ok... Bophut has many restaurants too but we are talking about quality place as it's ex-pats area, so everything is quite high standard here ( but not necessary high price), it's a famous dining area of the island, which i not comparable to any other area.

From your hotel list, I can say that Anantara beats them all, it's 100 times better than all the rest, it's 5 star, it's stunning, it's in a best location and has the best pool area, although Centara is not bad too. Bophut resort and spa is not very good.

Singapore
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2. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

Hi Elina70

any hotels to recommend if i wan to stay at chaweng beach area as the main nightlife is there right?...my budget is not more then SGD600 for 4 nites (avg SGD150/nite)...also me and my wife is keen in SPA, therefore any hotel/resort that has good spa will be the best? if do not have also doesnt matter...

or do u have other places tat offer cheap and good spa?...roughly wat are the cost of the meals in Chaweng beach?...and from samui airport, how much does it cost to travel to chaweng beach hotels?

thanx

Singapore, Singapore
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161 posts
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3. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

hi elina, thanks a lot for your input! I seem quite inclined to choose Anantara as well based on the photos that I've seen online.

Some of the reviews tht I've read about Anantara seem to be on the negative side, hence making me even more confused.

Are there many good massages (reasonable ones) in Bo Phut/Chaweng as well?

Cork, Ireland
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4. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

Hiya,

I went to Koh Samui for exactly the same dates last year, it rained a bit but certainly not every day. May isn't the rainy season at all, the locals said that rain at that time of the year was quite unusual so hopefully you won't get any while you're there. I see that you're travelling with your "significant other" and I would highly recommend the Amari Palm Reef hotel in Chaweng. To be honest the resort of Chaweng isn't great but it does have some really great bars and lovely restaurants and the beach is really lovely. I reviewed the Amari Palm Reef on Trip Advisor if you want to check that out and I also posted some photos of the hotel with my review so you can have a little nose at them as well and see what you think. To be honest that hotel really made our stay in Koh Samui, in my opinion it was the nicest hotel around :D

Ko Samui, Thailand
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5. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

Answer to Dreamer17 -

In Chaweng check Baan Chaweng Beach Resort, Fair House Beach Resort, Banana Fan Sea, Iyara Beach Hotel and Plaza, - they are very nice hotels and within your budget and also check Baan Haad Ngam Boutique Resort which is a bit above your budget but also really good.

Most of hotels have their own SPA, but they are not always the best. One of the best ones - Eranda Spa between Choengmon and North Chaweng, great treatments, amazing view and the garden, I can't recommend it highly enough. Prices are reasonable.

I don't eat in Chaweng as I am local, but I assume that the prices in Thai places on the beach are the same as everywhere else, about 8-10 US dollars per person for a dinner without drinks. Restaurants on the road are more expensive but not always better. I would stick to the Thai places, they are cleaner.

Transfer from the airport will be around 500 Baht for your own cab, or less if you share a minivan.

Answer to Synkronize -

one of the very best cheap places for massage on the island is in Bophut, called Bophut Massage, it's next door from a shop called The House, 3 doors away from Absolute Yoga Studio in Fisherman Village.

The staff are amazing there, they are all trained and certified and they actually know what they are doing, compared to a massage on the beach - on a beach they just gonna lightly touch you and press in a few points, waste of money but quite relaxing.

And of course if you go to the expensive SPA you are gonna get a great massage. One more personal advise - the best masseur on the island is the Indian girl called Rubi,trained in ayurvedic massage, works in Kamalaya Spa (which is also great) on the south of Samui in Kamalaya resort. In case you take a trip around the island which I would highly recommend.

Singapore
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6. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

Hi Elina70

thanx for ur reply.

As u mention Eranda Spa, prices are reasonable and looks nice...is it ok we ask the hotel to book for us then we take a taxi there? There are a few hotels/resort i have gone thru mayb u can help me in which are better?...

Impiana Resort

Pavilion Samui Boutique Resort

Samui Cliff View Resort & Spa

Baan Haad Ngam Boutique Resort

Iyara Beach Hotel and Plaza

Are all the resorts i mention locate in Chaweng area?..and do they offer SPA too?...

like u mention, u will eat in Thai places, wat do u mean? are there any examples?...

thanx again...

Singapore
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7. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

Hi elina70

wat abt Punnpreeda Hip Resort? any idea is this a gd resort?...coz i can good bargain from my local agent...is this hotel near Chaweng?...and does it have good spa?

thanx

Ko Samui, Thailand
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8. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

Hi, from your hotel list only 2 hotels are in Chaweng , which are Baan Haad Ngam Boutique Resort and

Iyara Beach Hotel and Plaza. The other ones between Chaweng and Lamai in a middle of nowhere, and Pavilion Samui Boutique Resort is in Lamai.

The locals tend to eat mostly in Thai places in their local neighborhood for a simple reasons - they cheap, they clean and they delicious.

Of course we eat in all kind of restaurants, but not many locals would eat in Chaweng on the street as we are conserned about quality of food there. If you eat in hotels restaurants in Chaweng then it's fine because there are plenty of great hotels there and they have very good restaurants, for example The Library hotel, Burirasa hotel, Budsaba restaurant in

Muang Kulaypan hotel, Dara Samui. Plus there are a few of good restaurants on Soi Colibri opposite Centara Hotel - Italian "Bellini", , Chinese "Jing" and Fusion food "Betelnut" But as an ex-pat who lives in Bophut I personally tend to eat in Bophut which is the best dining area on the island anyway, same as people who live in Lamai tend to eat in Lamai, If you are in Maenam -you tend to find something there...and so on, but Chaweng is pure touristy place that's why we don't normally dine there.

Ko Samui, Thailand
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9. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

Punpreeda is very new, quite smal but good, you cannot swim in the sea there but they have a good pool, there was no Spa there, only massage if you book, but it's much cheaper to come to Bophut for massage which is 5 min away. The nearest Spa to Punpreeda is Ban Sabai Spa in Bangrak which is very good. It's about 2-3 min drive, 10-15 min to walk.

Singapore
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10. Re: Confused: Where to stay?

Hi Elina70

Hmmmm...seems quite difficult to chose...as u mention Impiana Resort and Samui Cliff View Resort & Spa is in the middle or nowhere, meaning not very access friendly and i will have difficult time to find food and walk along the roadside in the night time as i am sure chaweng area will able me to do tat right?

Actually i have narrow down to Samui Cliff and Punnpreeda Hip Resort as both looks good...but base on wat u say seems like its nt a good choice...anymore resorts to recommend if my budget is uo to SGD180 per nite?

thanx alot for ur help...