My partner and I stayed here for 6 nights in April 2012. We found the resort via a Groupon-style deal in Australia and were persuaded to stay on the basis of the reviews on TripAdvisor.
While the overall experience was good (and for the money we payed, excellent value), there were too many small flaws in the property and the service standards to justify a higher mark. I would have rated it 4 stars (very good) except that it touts itself as a 5-star/luxury resort, and against that benchmark, it's barely average.
First the good points:
1. Pool area - A really nice infinity-edge pool looks out over the beach and water. It's a great place to spend the days, though get in early if you want a sun lounge near the pool as the resort is not good at enforcing a no-reservations policy (one family was particularly obnoxious while we were there - they would place their stuff on the prime lounges before breakfast, then leave them there all day even though they were at the pool only intermittently).
2. Tree Tops restaurant - We dined here one night and while it's expensive, it's definitely worth doing. The food is very good (Western/Asian fusion), and the service is attentive and discreet. The setting (in your own private "tree house") is very romantic.
3. Location - Just far enough out of the main Chaweng strip to be quiet and relaxed, but close enough to walk (about 20 mins) if you're keen to eat away from the resort's over-priced food outlets. The resort's small beach also feels quite private, as it's not really shared with other properties.
Points for improvement:
1. Service generally - This was very inconsistent, especially when it came to housekeeping (which was bizarrely erratic in terms of its timing, the standard of cleaning and the replacement (or non-replacement) of amenities like towels and soap). Requests to reception were often not acted on, service at Oceankiss restaurant (particularly at breakfast) was slow, and the English language skills of staff were poor (admittedly a problem all over Asia, but English tuition should be a key part of the training of staff in top resorts). Having said that, the staff are universally friendly and smiling, which goes a long way to make up for service problems.
2. Wifi - Over-priced, unreliable and slow (despite an apparent upgrade recently to "high speed" broadband, which we were told about as a justification for being charged 2,500 THB for a week of access). When are hotels going to learn that this should be considered an essential feature in the 21st century (just like a phone line or TV).
3. Rooms - We stayed in a "deluxe" room, but basically that's just the lowest category of room. While it's spacious and has a nice layout, it is showing its age and could do with a refresh. Beds are hard and quite uncomfortable. Also, there is no aircon in the bathroom area, so if you close the doors leading into the bedroom (as you obviously do when using the toilet), it rapidly gets very hot and uncomfortable especially with the late afternoon sun streaming in. And why on earth is the wardrobe in the bathroom, directly opposite the shower, where water can splash on it?
4. Oceankiss - The breakfast spread was only average, and the selection of dishes barely changed in the whole week we were there. The staffing doesn't cope well with the rush of people around 9:30-10:00, so the queues at the egg station are ridiculous. Also staff are very slow to deliver coffee orders. The set dinner (part of the deal we bought) was very mediocre indeed - clearly the lowest possible cost option for the resort, despite being touted as a "valuable inclusion" in our package.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nestled on the quiet, pristine northern end of Chaweng Beach, Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort & Spa offers peerless luxury Koh Samui accommodation just steps away from the ocean. Watch the sun rise over Samui’s palm forested coastline. Recline in rooms and suites inspired by the island’s original Chinese merchant settlers. Experience the perfect romantic dinner for two in a setting of your choice, accompanied by the freshest international cuisine.With room sizes starting at 61 square metres, Anantara Lawana Resort & Spa provides leading island resort accommodation. From the luxuriously appointed rooms and spacious Koh Samui pool villas to the resort’s communal facilities and restaurants, each guest is treated to the finest in services and amenities. Take a dip in the beachside infinity edge pool, dine in our treehouse restaurant overlooking the bay, or keep in touch with friends back home thanks to free Wi-Fi throughout the resort.While Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort & Spa’s location is quiet and tranquil, the buzz and excitement of Chaweng Beach lie just around the corner, with an array of international restaurants and local shops to take care of your every need. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Anantara Lawana Hotel Chaweng
- Lawana Hotel Bophut
- Lawana Resort Bophut
- Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort Ko Samui/Chaweng