Not long ago, luxury or five-star accommodation choices were limited on Koh Samui.
But now things are changing rapidly and it looks at though the island will soon have all the big names in the hotel industry, including such high-end international brands as Conrad,Starwood and Hyatt.
Trendy X2 opens in Samui
X2 Resort (pronounced “Cross Two”), a five-star “designer resort” brand, arrived on Samui in June 2008. Located at Hua Thanon beach, X2 has 27 unique designer villas: an owner’s villa, a suite pool villa, 21 pool villas and four garden bungalows.
Other facilities include the popular X2 Spa, an impressive outdoor massage pavilion and – as in every other X2 Resort – the 4K restaurant and bar (pronounced “fork”) which serves a “mix & match” of Eastern and Western dishes, along with the best of fusion, to ensure that no guest ever gets bored of the food. Organic ingredients and local products in season dominate the menu.
Dusit D2 heading for Choengmon Beach
Dusit Thani is building its second boutique Dusit D2 property on Choengmon Beach – the first is in Chiang Mai and a third is under construction in Pattaya. When completed in August 2009, the Samui resort will have 60 pool villas.
Other facilities will include a restaurant, poolside bar, spa, fitness centre, library, meeting rooms, and a 90-metre-long swimming pool facing the sea.
The three hotels will focus on the D2 brand mission of delivering “a leading new business or leisure experience, focusing on recognizing and meeting the needs of the new generation of travelers.”
Park Hyatt coming to Samui
Another top name coming to Samui in 2009 is the Park Hyatt Koh Samui. This will have 90 luxurious hotel villas and a further 24 residential villas, all set on a spectacular hilltop location overlooking Thong Krut Bay at the south end of Samui, and about 45 minutes from Samui Airport. The resort is being developed by Proud Resorts Koh Samui Co Ltd and will be managed by Hyatt Hotels & Resorts.
First W Retreat in Southeast Asia opens in 2009
Hyatt’s international competitor, Starwood, will manage the W Retreat & Residences on Maenam Beach, due to open in 2009. The resort, the first W Retreat in Southeast Asia, will have 70 villas, a restaurant, a pool bar and a spa. Fifteen luxury villas on the grounds of the resort will be available for purchase. Starwood has 21 W Hotels around the world. The company says that, by inspiring and indulging its guests with thoughtful, refreshing and stylish experiences, signature restaurants, bars and destination spas, W has become the fastest-growing luxury hotel brand in the world.
Conrad for island’s southwest coast
Another international name coming to Samui is Conrad. The Conrad Samui Resort & Spa will open in 2009 on a hill on the southwest side of the island, overlooking Ao Thai Beach. The mantra for the new resort is “the luxury of being yourself’; it will have 79 villas and 39 Conrad Residential villas, all-day dining at a variety of restaurants, bars and other outlets, a unique Thai spa and more.
Away Koh Phangan Resort to open next year
Just across the water from Samui, next to Koh Phangan’s famed Haad Rinn Beach, Lifestylehotels and Astudo Hotel & Resort Management (which also has the X2 brand) will open the Away Koh Phangan Resort later in 2009. The resort will have 70 standard rooms, eight deluxe rooms with sea view and one Beachfront Villa.
The site is just 10 minutes’ walk from where the island’s famous full moon party takes place. The resort’s facilities include a large beachfront infinity-edge swimming pool with pool bar, spa and massage centre, the El Fresco open-air restaurant, and complimentary use of hi-speed internet.
Hotel Ibis Bophut shoots to open late 2008
This newcomer on Samui's hotel scene is set to be the first international three-star hotel on Bophut Beach. The Ibis offers 260 modern rooms, each with WiFi and 24-hour reception. Guests can relax by the pool, chill out at the bar and restaurant or explore the authentic fishing village nearby. Hotel Ibis Bophut Samui is located about ten minutes from Samui airport and five from Maenam Pier.
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