Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui
Luxurious, relaxed, elegant, tropical
219 Moo 5 Ang Thong 66-77-243-000 www.fourseasons.com
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At a Glance
This stunning property, set into a cliff-side overlooking the gulf of Siam, offers private pool villas and residences and a welcoming atmosphere with top-notch service.
- The 60 hillside villas with private infinity pools overlooking the resort and the Gulf
- The welcoming and attentive staff, who cater to couples just as well as to families
- The wide, white sandy beach, with easy access to water sports equipment, snorkeling, kayaking, boat rides and Muay Thai sessions on the floating dock, just offshore
- The 50-meter pool right on the beach, next to a restaurant and bar (and not far from the kids’ club, for parents)
Arriving at the Four Seasons Koh Samui does not disappoint. The resort’s unassuming driveway leads to the top of the property, where a tall, narrow door opens to a small lobby and a modern, open overhanging deck with an incredible panoramic view of the lush resort grounds, an abundance of palm trees and the turquoise water of the gulf. The property will appeal to guests looking for high-touch service and a distinctive sense of place.
Situated in the tangled greens of a coconut grove (the property has 856 coconut trees!), the Four Seasons is built into a steep hillside, which ensures spectacular views of the Gulf of Siam from all over the property. There are 60 villas and 14 two- to five-bedroom residence villas, but because of the resort’s multilevel layout, it doesn’t feel crowded. The villas are well-proportioned, with ample indoor and outdoor spaces connected by floor-to-ceiling sliding windows that let you enjoy the view from your bathtub, bed or your dressing area. Interiors by Bensley Design Studios showcase an elegantly understated aesthetic: polished teak and rosewood furniture and floors, area rugs with pops of color and the occasional fabric or décor accent in striking turquoise. Each massive stone-lined bathroom has a double vanity and a deep egg-shaped bathtub that faces the window, plus a separate rain shower. It’s the kind of sexy yet relaxed jungle lair you picture James Bond unwinding in at the end of the movie. Each villa has a spacious outdoor terrace with an infinity pool and oversized daybeds. Naturally, the minibar, stocked with sweet and salty treats, a Lavazza coffeemaker and Champagne and wine, is found out here.
Getting around the sprawling property on foot can be bit of a workout, due to its steep inclines, so much of the time you will want to call for a “buggy,” an oversized golf cart to get up and down the mountain. Down by the lovely beach, there’s a cool bar/lounge, where guests can nurse a cocktail or a smoothies, while reclining on enormous daybeds, as well as enjoy the massive 50-meter pool that’s popular with families. You won’t go long without water and chilled towels here. Travelers with children (anyone under 18 can stay in their parents’ room for no extra charge) usually prefer the beach villas, which don’t have the elevated, sweeping views, but enjoy direct access to sand and water, with somewhat less privacy. Indagare knows which two are the most private. Overall, the Four Seasons Koh Samui is extremely child-friendly, without losing its sense of romance and luxuriousness. There’s a fabulous kids’ club, and little treats and surprises are organized throughout the day, such as s’mores offered at a beachside campfire every afternoon.
Parents should book babysitting services in advance to make time for a pampering half-or full-day at the Four Seasons’ excellent Secret Garden Spa or to take advantage of the property’s romantic atmosphere. There are five spa salas, actually huge villas, each with indoor and outdoor massage beds, indoor and outdoor showers, an alfresco bathtub and a steam room. Hidden in the jungle, they offer privacy and time for reflection. Two other salas are tucked away by the beach. Sala 5 is the most remote: you get there via a wooden walkway that snakes up the path of stairs through dense greenery. Treatments here are referred to as experiences, and the spa therapists are excellent. All include local products, such as lemon grass, coconut oil and herbal tonics and teas that are locally produced. Guests who prefer to be more active can play tennis and enjoy water sports. The attentive staff can also arrange private lessons with a Thai kickboxing champion (there is a small ring for sparring; sessions even happen on the floating dock just off the beach) or spend time training in the fitness center or doing pilates or yoga in an outdoor pavilion with a view. Overachievers can attempt the K2 competition, which involves a timed run to the top of the property. Indagare can help arrange additional activities off-site such as mountain biking and a visit to a coconut shop for a lesson in how coconuts are harvested, as well as fishing, hiking, golfing, jet skiing, kiteboarding and sailing, among others.
There are three restaurants serving excellent food on the property, including KOH, perched on one of the property’s highest points, and Pla Pla, the breezy beachside eatery, where most guests enjoy a long lunch with fresh seafood such as Clay pot roasted Cod, blue crab salad and coconut risotto with lobster. For more casual fare, you’ll find CoCoRum, a Latin American–inspired bar that’s set back from the property’s private beach. Here you can try ceviches, tacos (and even pizza) or rum tipples by the resort’s sleek pool. The breakfast buffet, which is served atop the hill, with a spectacular view at KOH, is varied, fresh and not to be missed. Unlike many Western properties throughout Thailand, the chef here is not afraid to serve the kind of real Thai spice the south is so well known for (Larb tuna and palm heart salad are standouts). The stylish new pop-up restaurant The Beach House serves an appealing buffet two nights per week, with tables outside for up to 30 guests (complete with fire dancers on the beach) and different themes to spice things up. In-villa dining is also a popular option for dinner: from the privacy of your terrace, you can watch the many twinkling green lights from the fishing boats out navigate their way in the night, while sampling a delicious array of the chef’s favorite recipes.
Who Should Stay
Couples, groups and families will all be equally happy here, as the property offers comfortable, spacious, well-designed accommodations, warm and efficient service, terrific views and excellent food.
Who Should Not Stay
Those who prefer a more intimate, boutique experience or high-design hotel should consider other options.