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“A Haven of Style and Substance on Koh Tao”
Review of The Rocks Villas

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The Rocks Villas
Ranked #10 of 50 Hotels in Koh Tao
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 3 March 2010

Just spent two weeks visiting my son and staying at The Rocks. Koh Tao is an amazingly beautiful yet, by European standards, fairly primitive island. The rocks is a haven of style and substance here. Janine really knows her stuff and this small private resort is everything the web site promises. If you are young hire a motorbike, but if, like me, you are knocking on a bit hire a car or use the many taxis. All roads on Tao - except the one coast road - are steep and only partially concreted, and Koh Tao is a hill. If you are aware and prepared for this your visit will be a dream. I have stayed at a number of places on the island and The Rocks is the best. Cool - in both senses - and with a view to die for from each unit. All the staff are a joy and will do everything to help you enjoy the island paradise.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled solo
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Thank JohnandBeccaCumbria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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190 - 196 of 243 reviews

Reviewed 3 February 2010

Can't add much that the others didn't mention already. Thanks Janine, we had a great time there on our honeymoon and will definitely pass by if we return to Koh Tao.
Kristina & Philipp

  • Stayed: August 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank Philipp1980
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 January 2010

Excellent option in Koh Tao - probably one of the very few of this quality - that I've seen at least. Almost everything was great and many people wrote that better than I could so I'll focus on where you should manage your expectations - location - the gorgeous view comes at a cost: 10 minutes downhill to the end of the Sairee beach and a bit more uphill - depending on your fitness level. It is quite steep and - as most roads on that island - not paved and not light at night. Overall - you're fairly close (personal judgment) to the lively areas on the beach yet far enough so that you only get to hear the jungle sounds and potentially your neighbors.

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank stefanv03
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 January 2010

We stayed at The Rocks in October 2009, for the last week of our honeymoon. The setting is beautiful and our villa was lovely – a great combination of style and comfort. The pool and surrounding area are stunning, as are the views across the bay below, and beyond.

The other special thing about The Rocks is the owner, Janine. She is an absolutely fantastic host. Her flexibility to accommodate us was a real breath of fresh air. For example, breakfast could be served any time until 12pm, though a bit later and this wouldn’t have caused a problem. We certainly have fond memories of the wonderful breakfasts she served on our patio. (One morning, Janine even set up breakfast for us down by the pool – we were already there, and she suggested it would be easier for us than walking the few metres back up to our villa – a wonderful idea!) Her recommendations of local restaurants, bars, snorkel outfits, taxi drivers and shops ensured we made the most of the island as well.

As other reviewers have also said, the use of a mobile phone is a fantastic help.

However, I would think carefully before going again, for a few reasons.

Leaving any food out in the villa attracts ants immediately – and lots of them. This did get a little frustrating. The other wildlife factor is the geckos. We’d often wake up to four or five geckos peppered around our bedroom in the morning, which was a little disconcerting (though probably nothing to be surprised about in this part of the world). The bigger problem was the enormous gecko that would come into our lounge during the day, and then make his break for freedom at dusk. By the end of our stay, we’d open the door to the lounge with trepidation, scared we’d see our giant ‘friend’ on the move again. It might sound minor, but it was a shame to have this concern hanging over us, when we were looking for a week of pure relaxation.

The other consideration, which is already well documented, is the road leading to the villas. It’s steep, uneven, unlit and had a few fairly scary canine inhabitants – they’d come out at night, and put us off walking the route down into town. The recommended taxi option is a good one, but we’d hoped to have the flexibility to walk into town as and when we chose, rather than having to rely on a driver.

Having said all of this, we had a wonderful time here. And if these things wouldn’t bother you, I’d thoroughly recommend a stay at The Rocks.

  • Stayed: October 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Sleepyhead999
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 October 2009

My husband and I stayed in the villa this past September. The Villas were very clean and the service was great. Every morning Janine brought our fresh-to-order breakfast. My thoughts are that the Rocks Villas are ahead of the times at Ko Tao. The island's popularity is growing, and more people may be looking for higher quality accommodations. The view from the villa is amazing. We were aware that the expense of a good view would be a moderate hike. So the villa may not be appropriate for people with physical restraints, unless you rent an ATV or transportation daily. We went to Ko Tao for the scuba diving - we are already certified. Janine provided a scuba store recommendation, however it did not live up to our expectations.
The beach was a 5-10 min. walk, which was beautiful. The villa is located on the north end of the beach. The north end was quieter and a short walk from the lively night life. Overall, the Rocks Villas was a great place to stay in Ko Tao.

  • Stayed: September 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank cannonk02
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 October 2009

On the whole everything was as we expected it to be, very friendly and luxurious. The view is amazing, sunset while you're in the pool, beautiful bathroom, luxurious bed!!! The food service is nice - you can order a delivery service from a nearby restaurant. Breakfast is also very good but the breakfast service is a bit disturbing as the staff serves it from the inside of your villa - the only thing we can critic on. Therefore only 4 out of 5 points.

  • Stayed: September 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank lithania
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 June 2009

Everything about The Rocks Villas is of a very high standard. First of all, there are only 3 villas (2 family villas with 2 bedrooms and 1 couples villa with one bedroom) which makes The Rocks very private and personal.

The Villas are modern and have all the creature comforts one would expect from a home such as a fully equipped kitchen with microwave, TV with satellite and a PS2. The villas are still new and as a result everything is still fresh and clean.

The villas are on the hillside and the uninterrupted view from both the villa and the infinity pool is breathtaking. Sitting on the patio outside the villa having sun-downers is truly something special! The view is what makes this a 5 star location.

The road up to the villas is not great and is a bit of a bumpy ride. However Janine (the owner) has a driver with a 4x4 who navigates it very well and has driven up and down there many times making it seem like a walk in the park. You could also opt to walk it which would only take you 5 minutes to the road. A small price to pay for such a great view! The driver is available most of the day up until around 10pm and picks you up and drops you off anywhere on the island - a much better option than using some of the other 'taxi drivers' that we saw.

After a long days diving if you don't feel like heading back out to town (which is only 5 minutes away anyway) there are a number of different take-out delivery options. The menu is extensive, very well priced but most of all it is good food and extremely tasty.

Janine is very friendly and helpful with lots of local information to offer to help make your time on Ko Tao as good as possible. To make things even easier, Janine gives you a mobile phone with credit so that you are able to call her if you need anything, to call the taxi driver or to call local places. A great idea and very handy! She also used to be a dive instructor and was more than happy to help us out.

Breakfast is fabulous and just what you need before a day of diving! You phone in your order each morning and Janine sets it up on the patio outside. You have a wide variety of choice from a given selection (even to the point that you can choose the type of bread) including a range of hot and cold options or you can mix and match if you prefer.

We ended up here after driving around the island visiting places to find somewhere to stay. The Rocks was by far the best and we now know for next time!

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank OnTheWayHome
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Rocks Villas

Address: 15/48 Moo 1, Koh Tao 84360, Thailand
Phone Number:
Region: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Koh Tao
Amenities:
Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Koh Tao
Hotel Class:4 star — The Rocks Villas 4*
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Rocks are boutique residences in southern Thailand offering both privacy and personal service. Surrounded by lush tropical jungle and stunning sea views, our four boutique villas and infinity-edge pool combine a feeling of tranquility and relaxation. Under Swiss and British management the Rocks are proud to be the original boutique villas on Koh Tao. Secluded, but still less than 10 minutes walk from the beach, they are the perfect holiday location for romantic couples, families or groups of friends. The Rocks is also a great location for your honeymoon. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Rocks Luxury Villas Hotel Koh Tao

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