The Ritz-Carlton opens its first hotel on the Eastern coast of Southern Thailand. Overlooking the Andaman sea, the luxurious five-star resort is located on the site of a former coconut plantation.
Built on a spot where coconuts were formerly cultivated, The Ritz-Carlton, Koh Samui, celebrates its past with the extensive use of coconut and other natural materials such as ceramics in its dramatic design.
The luxurious resort is the second Ritz-Carlton property in Thailand. The Phulay Bay, Ritz-Carlton Reserve, is located in the popular Thai resort of Krabi, which is located on the Western coast of Southern Thailand.
The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company has a growing presence in Asia. There are currently 14 Ritz-Carlton hotels and resorts in Greater China, four in Indonesia, four in Japan, one each in India and Singapore, and two in Malaysia, including the Ritz-Carlton, Langkawi, which opened earlier this year.
The brand is a fully owned subsidiary of Marriott International, which operates more than 90 hotels and 40 residential properties in more than 30 countries and territories around the world.
There are three ocean view pool villas and three ultimate pool villas. Both types measure 1,044 square feet or 97 square metres. They can accommodate up to three adults. They have 18 square-metre pools.
There are six villa Kasaras, which measure 2,745 square feet or 255 square metres. They can accommodate up to six adults. They have 60-square metres pools.
Villa bathrooms have large bathtubs and both indoor and outdoor showers as well as outdoor dining areas.
Ocean view suites measure 1,001 square feet or 93 square metres. They can accommodate up to six adults. Two-bedroom suites measure 2,002 square feet or 186 square metres. They can accommodate up to six adults.
Food + Beverage
The hotel has six food and beverage outlets. Each one has a different ambience, a different vibe, and a different menu.
- Pak Tai – serves traditional southern Thai cuisine in private dining spaces with views of the swim reef. Open for dinner.
- Shook! – serves an international menu with Asian and Western dishes washed down by a selection of fine wines. Open for breakfast and dinner.
- Sea Salt – serves international classics and Thai favorites overlooking the swimming pool. Open for lunch.
- Tides – serves signature cocktails citrus-cured specialties from the cevicheria overlooking the swimming pool. Open from 10 am to 6 pm.
- One Rai – a circular bar and lounge serving signature cocktails and Asian-inspired small bites. Open from 6 pm to 1 am.
- Baan Talat – serves Thai style street food in a tidied-up street market ambience complete with with street food stalls, dancing, and crafts. Open for dinner.
Facilities + Activities
The hotel has two private beaches overlooking a secluded bay, two lighted tennis courts, a swimming pool, and a children’s’ zone.
- Spa Village Koh Samui – the hotel has a 3,800-square-meter spa with eight treatment rooms, three outdoor massage pavilions, a yoga pavilion, a lap pool with cabanas, and a health bar.
- Muay Thai Gym – the hotel has a fully equipped gym with a Muay Thai kickboxing ring and trained Muay Thai instructors.
- Swim Reef – the hotel Swim Reef within the resort that teems with over 50 species of fish. It is the largest of its kind in Southeast Asia, offering snorkeling and fish-feeding experiences.
- Activities – the hotel offers cooking lessons, surfing, boogie boarding, sailing, kayaking, stand-up paddling, snorkeling, jogging, and hiking. There are indoor and outdoor activities for children.
- Weddings – the hotel can organize Thai or Western style weddings and vow renewal ceremonies.
Location, Location, Location
Koh Samui is an 88-square mile, or 229 square kilometer, island off the eastern coast of southern Thailand. Located in Surat Thani province, it is Thailand’s third largest island after Phuket and Koh Chang.
Koh Samui has numerous types of accommodation, from modest guest houses to extravagant five-star resorts.
There are lovely beaches, coral reefs, and coconut groves. Attractions include the Giant Buddha and Chaewang Beach, which is where most of the hotels, food and beverage outlets, and day spas are located.
I’ve been to Koh Samui several times, and I highly Fisherman’s Village. It is especially pumped up on Friday nights, but any night is a good time to visit in my opinion.
Koh Samui has its own airport, Samui International Airport. Privately owned, the airport has what I think of as the world’s cutest terminal.
The airport is Thailand’s seventh busiest airport, handling more than one million passengers per year.
The airport is a hub for Bangkok Airways, which offers flights to both domestic and foreign travel destinations.
Domestic travel destinations include Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport as well as Chiang Mai, Krabi, Pattaya-U-Tapao, and Phuket. The flight time from Bangkok to Koh Samui is roughly 45 minutes
Foreign travel destinations include Chengdu and Chongqing, China; Hong Kong; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; and Singapore.
Thai Airways offers service to Suvarnabhumi. Other carriers serving the airport include Lucky Air, Orient Thai, SilkAir, and Tibet Airlines.
Backpackers might prefer to reach the island by way of ferry from the mainland.
If you arrive at the airport early, don’t take the shuttle from the check-in counter to the departure gate.
Instead stroll down the charming pedestrian mall, which is lined with cafes, day spas, a bookstore, and souvenir shops.
The Ritz-Carlton, Koh Samui – 9/123 Moo 5, Tambon Bophut, Koh Samui, Thailand. Telephone: +66 77 915 77.
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