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Bandara Resort & Spa
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Reviewed 26 May 2010

I booked this basically as it was good value and the pools looked great.

Summary of the things you need to know


Great Pools. Next to the main pool are some good little covered areas nice for a relax and the pool is a large size in nice gardens with some little elephants spraying water.
The beach Pool was my fav and when we where in the hotel where me and the lady relaxed. The upper Beach pool is also shaded from about 4pm onwards which if you are as blond as me is a big deal in the hot season.

Rooms: Nice and well fitted. I booked a superior room but requested a top floor room and as it was quite I believe we where upgraded to a deluxe room. A good size with everything you need including a fridge with freezer for the lollies. Word of warning the ground floor rooms looked very exposed to people walking by.

Food and drinks: Average and of course over priced from the hotel. However from 5-7 at the cool beach bar you go 2 cocktails for about 5 quid which was a nice time for me and the lady as we had a few while playing the bar games as the sun went down. Get yourself to the family mart across the street and fill your mini bar for a 5th of the cost. A can of coke is 20p rather than a quid from the hotel.

Staff: Friendly and nice while English okay if not perfect but the saddo’s who complain about that need to book elsewhere other than Thailand.

Beach: In one word awful. This sand is the worst on the island and a real pain to walk on and you sink into it. Also note like many places on Samui they pump their untreated sewage right into the water next to their own bit of beach. This stinks near the beach at midnight and also makes the water dirty and full of crap.

Capacity: We arrived the 14th for 6 nights and the hotel was quiet was relaxing as the week went on, alot more people arrived and the towel wars started. With lots of German’s on the island many beds where towelled up by 6:30am and I can see this hotel being too busy when full.

Location: It’s a real pain to get to the beginning of the path to the fisherman’s village walking on the beach and worse on the way back after a few beers. I would suggest you walk out the main door of the hotel onto the main road and then turn left at the full moon restaurant sign which takes you on a path which runs all the way to the fisherman’s village. Okay and more relaxing than Cheewang, but don’t be taken in by all this lovely little fisherman’s village stuff the place is a tourist trap and full of average over priced restaurants by Thai standards. The south of the island is where you get lovely traditional food at a fair price and don’t be sacred by the local Thai places/or street food some of the best grub found here.

There is however a gem just two hotels down where you can eat and that’s the Hansar restarting which has a real world class chief from Canada and proper quality food.

This part of the island is over developed like cheewang and the worst beaches and sea quality. As for getting round the island a taxis is 5-10 pounds dependant on where you are going or jump on the back of the red trucks (safe and run and its 1-3 quid anywhere). Or if you want some fun jump on the back of motorbike taxis for about 1-2 quid. I suggest getting your own transport either a jeep for 15 quid a day or a bike for a fiver.

Samui:

Okay I came here in 2001 as a young man so it hard for me to remain neutral but the fact was at this time it was the best place I had ever been. A beautiful island which had nightlife and attractions but also remote beach’s with something for backpackers as well. It had the chance of adventure into the mountains or exploring the island on near empty roads on your bike. It was cheap and the samui’s themselves where lovely people. Also if you are that way inclined you could meet a local lady at the Reggie bar which could be innocent or seedy dependant on the way you roll. Also amazing waterfalls where you had to trek up mountains and then could swim in rock pools.

Now very few of these things are true. There are at least 3 Tesco’s on the island! The roads are busy full of big pick up trucks, the population is now mainly Thai from the mainland and they all want your money. Plus there must be 10 times the amount of people on the Island. The ring road is now completely developed and there are no remote beaches left just hotels and restaurants. Also in mainly places the water is dirty and there is plastic ling around all over the place. The attractions are still there however the waterfalls are dry due to a lack of rain? But I would suggest over population.

Thailand is great I love the food, the people and Chang beer but this isn’t progress as if you want to sit in a lovely hotel you can do that anywhere as this Island is on the way to being a crap hole already with water shortages and power cuts and just too many people. Plus it isn’t cheap anymore. Samui reflects how we treat our beautiful planet. If you want paradise look elsewhere but if you are a package holiday victim I guess this place is still great.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank BOB6198
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 May 2010

We went here on our honeymoon for 7 nights in mid-April. Our stay was just stunning from start to finish.
We stayed in a pool villa which exceeded all our expectations. The pool was just wonderful, especially as it was so hot while we were there.
Breakfast was great, be sure to try the little dim sum things!
The pool bar happy hour with the 2-for-1 cocktails was great (probably not that fantastic in terms of value, but great tasting and you can't beat the location).
Make sure you use the Family mart across the road. We emptied out our mini bar and restocked it with beers and snacks from here. Super value.
The fishermans village is good for tea, but head up the road in the other direction and there are some amazing value restaurants up that way.

I would come back here in a heartbeat (just hopefully for longer next time!)

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank lsomui
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 May 2010

We came to this resort for my mums wedding in April 2010.
The wedding was magical and so beautiful, so well organised and all of us had such a blast, my mum and her new husband had their dream wedding. Chanupong was the wedding coordiantor and helped with all our questions pre wedding and had everything organised perfectly. The staff were wonderful and were into the spirit of the wedding. I would strongly recomend the Traditional Thai Wedding at this resort, the monks blessing was very special and different. The set up including the buffet set up was perfect and beautiful.
Moving onto the resort, staff are very friendly, always greeting you with a big smile, the rooms are lovely and the beds so comfortable! The pool is fantastic.
Buffet breakfast was devine, always so much to choose from, I couldnt help but pack my plate up with food.
Location is nice as its a resort style location and away from the busyness and smells of Chaweng, our group hired scooters so rode around the island and visited Chaweng many times.
Also special note to the resort and Steve the manager, my partners mother broke her leg and was in hospital, the resort brought her flowers and fruit which was a lovely gesture and took care of her husband as they needed to extend their stay.
All in all, I will def be back next year and the resort is A+++++

  • Stayed: April 2010
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Thank Gozo86
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 May 2010

My new husband and I have just returned from a wedding/honeymoon/holiday all inclusive at the Bandara Resort. Our family and friends also traveled with us to celebrate our Traditional Thai wedding held at the Resort. We were just overwelhmed by the extravagance and splendour of our Thai wedding ceremony. We left it all up to the Bandara Team to organise the wedding and we can not faulter a thing. It was certainly our dream wedding come true and more. We had never attended a Thai wedding but I must say, it is so different to the traditional Western Style. The ceremony was conducted on the beach, monks and all. This was our wish and the Bandara Team made it happen. They went out of their way to grant our every wish. Nothing was ever a problem and everything was perfect. They even celebrated with us making it all more special. Nothing went wrong. OMG I wish everyone could experience what we experienced. We stayed in a Villa room and our guests stayed in both Deluxe and Superior rooms. We were treated like royality and our guests were made very welcome by all staff at Bandara. There is so much to say but of course I cannot brag on forever. If there is anyone out there that wishes to ask any questions about weddings at Bandara, accommodation and even things to do in Koh Samui, please do not hestitate to ask. We loved it so much we tried to go back after our return to Australia but time was not on our side. We will go back for sure there is no doubt.
P.S will hopefully be posting some pics soon once I get around to it.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled with family
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Thank blazert
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 May 2010

We've just returned from a 10 night stay at the Bandara and couldn't recommend it highly enough. To be fair, we have only 1 resort in Barbados and just normal hotels to compare with but we found the Bandara to be absolutely wonderful.

The grounds are big and spacious with lovely garden areas that you meander through to reach the beachfront. It is evident the grounds are looked after and maintained at a very high standard. The pools are fabulous, with one very long one in the centre nearer to reception area (and a kiddies pool nearby) then the infinity pool on the beachfront with a fabulous view of Bophut Beach and Koh Pgangan. I do agree with other reviews that it's a shame the pool bar is so quiet and virtually empty in the evenings.

We found the reception area to be very spacious with a lovely water feature (rectangular shaped pond). The hotel kindly upgraded us for free to a deluxe room which was lovely. The room had a king size bed which was extremely comfy with luxurious bedding and big pillows (4 pillows were provided). The day beds in the room and on the balcony are a nice touch too. We had a bath separate to the shower which was useful, and also the DVD player came in handy (with all the DVDs you can buy in the village!).

Maid service is great as the room was always made up to a high standard and fresh beach towels always provided which are useful for the sun loungers. There is also free internet access (2 computers) and we never had a problem using them although it was very quiet.

Breakfast was amazing with a huge variety of food available. Ranging from pancakes and syrup, fresh fruit, cereal, yogurt, sweet pastries through to hot cooked food (eggs, bacon, omlettes etc) and even fried rice, dim sum and other daily Thai treats! The fruit juice is yummy too, especially Guava juice.

Fisherman's village is only a short walk away - the quickest route is taking a right at the beachfront and a 5 min walk along the beach (past the Anantara) where you can then join the paved walkway for a couple more minutes into the village. The village caters for all food needs and we mainly ate Thai but also had steak at The Shack, and a burger at Billabong. We didn't eat dinner at the Bandara mainly based on the reviews we read and also it's nice to head out to the village in the evening.

All in all, we enjoyed the Bandara so much we didn't really do much but unwind by the pool overlooking the beach and making full use of the resort and room (and the A/C which was most important!). We didn't use the spa facilities or gym equipment but it all looked very good!

The only critism (which has already been mentioned in other reviews) is the reception staff speak very little English but they remain very courteous and as helpful as possible. Also we were slightly concerned about construction taking place at the neighbouring hotel but can reassure that you only heard this when by the pool at the beachfront.

All in all I would recommend this hotel to anyone. Although we did get a great deal through an agency but would've been prepared to pay more and stay in the same resort.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Misspotatohead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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