April 1, 2015
Renaissance Koh Samui Resort + Spa is an excellent romantic getaway, perched on a hill that slopes towards an endless sapphire blue sea. Tranquil yet packed with all modern facilities for the comfort of guests, I was fortunate enough to experience this amazing resort in Koh Samui courtesy of our travel partners Skyscanner, Bangkok Airways and of course, Marriott Hotel Group.
You can easily booked this luxurious resort through Skyscanner – a simple to use global travel website that enables people to find comparisons for flights and hotels. Just select your travel dates and destinations on the platform, and easily compare hundreds of hotels and available flights to your country of visit.
It really lessens the hassle of having to manually visit multiple hotel and airline pages trying to figure out the best route and price; Skyscanner does all that for you quickly and efficiently. Afterall, the point of a trip is to de-stress, right?
As airlines coming to Koh Samui are pretty limited, you’ll probably want to fly via boutique airline Bangkok Airways with their signature Thai hospitality and modern small capacity aircrafts.
If you’re flying via business class, Bangkok Airway‘s teal colored airport lounge is a stop you must not miss, as you wait for your flight in the comfort of air-conditioning and light bites (as well as Thai beer!).
As you arrive in the lobby of Renaissance Koh Samui, you’ll be wowed by their blend of a private secluded island village with the all the perks of a luxury spa resort. Ample usage of natural elements like water pools and wooden frames induce that sense of calmness even before stepping into the guest room.
Surrounded by shrubbery, Renaissance Koh Samui is the ultimate tropical island getaway.
We got to stay in the huge 549sqft Deluxe Garden View room, which also comes with an outdoor balcony, your own private whirlpool on said balcony, a King-sized bed, a Sofa-bed, WIFI and of course a television.
Usually when I travel to Bangkok I have problems connecting my three-pin Singapore power plug (you’ll need to buy/bring a universal adapter), but Renaissance Koh Samui provides universal power outlets in their rooms, saving me the nuisance of having to hunt for an adapter.
I kid you not, this is the private whirlpool tub on the balcony connected to my room. I was so excited to try it out, you have no idea how much water I wasted soaking in this baby over the days of stay.
My room had luck of the draw with an amazing overview of the resort and even up to the beach from my balcony terrace.
The bathroom is also connected to the outdoor pool/balcony for easy access through the rooms.
Alright enough about the rooms, let’s explore the various facilities in Renaissance Koh Samui.
Being a premium resort and spa, you won’t want to miss the Quan Spa. There are individual huts where guests can be pampered to a relaxing and intimate massage in private.
The 1 hour professional oil massage I tried was so good, I kinda fell asleep. Well, it was more a doze off and wake up cycle of pleasure and pain, especially when the tight muscles are hit with just the right amount of pressure.
Keep your body fit and mind at ease with a variety of activities such as a workout in the fitness center, or a swim in the Olympic length pool on the 2nd floor. You can even take a hike through the mountains.
For the more relaxation-driven guests who still want a spot of sun, the beach pool will be more your speed as I’ll present in a bit.
Banana Leaf is Renaissance Koh Samui’s casual all-day dining restaurant that fuses flavors from International and Asian cuisines.
Indulge in a plentiful Internatinoal breakfast buffet, creative à la carte offerings, and tantalizing Thai specialties.
One of the must-tries for breakfast is the localized Samui Eggs benedict, made with a Penang curry sauce (instead of Hollandaise) over the poached eggs. A very different take with a slightly sour and spicy curry flavour that goes well with the eggs and muffin. Yolk could be a tad runnier though.
The Samui Sunshine Pancake is another breakfast item I loved, which comes decked out with bananas, mango and coconut shavings.
Banana Leaf’s a la carte menu features international and Thai dishes too. The Ahi Tuna Salad we tried for example was more seared tuna than salad; amazing generous portions.
Other dining options in Renaissance Koh Samui include tawaNN, an eclectic restaurant delivering the freshest seafood locally sourced from Koh Samui. You can enjoy an outdoors dinner while overlooking stunning sunsets over Lamai Bay.
Alternatively, head to the open-air Tapas for a superb venue to indulge in evening cocktails, and delicious small plates influenced by Thai, Spanish and Arabic flavors.
The Beachfront ourdoor pool at Renaissance Koh Samui is pretty much the epitome of luxury resort island life – pristine and beautiful. Just a few steps ahead is Laem Nan Beach as well, if you’d prefer the natural oceanic waves over the beach chairs and pool.
At the Pool Bar, you can enjoy sunset cocktails while overlooking the Gulf of Thailand. Having alcoholic drinks by a sunny beach pool, your nerves will quickly unwind with each passing minute (and sip). I particularly like the SangSom, a local Thai rum that carries a heavier earthy flavour than the usual white rum, mixing great with coke and a dash of lime.
By popular demand, Renaissance Koh Samui also offers cooking classes for guests to experience hands-on how to make traditional Thai recipes guided by the restaurant chefs.
Pounding away at chili and spices is hard work. The chefs are more than eager to help you out if needed (I think they could even be resisting the urge to do it), but I very much wanted to work my hands on the food.
Slicing up and marinating chicken like a Masterchef wannabe.
The chefs pan fried the chicken though, after we marinated the it. Probably afraid we accidentally fry our own fingers.
Mango Salad with Chicken. This is the first dish we made!
Picking out eggplants and chilies for the next dish.
Adding seasoning to the pot of soup.
Thai Tom Yum Seafood Soup. You can personalize your own creation’s taste according to how spicy, salty or sour you want it by constantly tasting and adjusting the seasoning. Tip: Add seasonings like the fish sauce bit by bit to tweak to prevent adding too much. You can always add more if its too little, but you can’t take out seasoning if too much is added!
The hotel even has its own little herb garden to pluck fresh herbs from to cook, like Basil, Kaffir leaf and Lemongrass.
My final creation: Thai Green Curry. The chef really does impact the taste of a dish, even when following the same recipes. Try cooking and taste the difference amongst guests!
Fancy an island tour? Renaissance Navigators are local tour guides that will personalize the places to see, visit and eat according to your preferences and guest profile. Charges are based on per hour, including the vehicle to ferry you around.
These experts will drive you on a personal tour while eloquently explaining the sights and sounds of the island.
Here’s some of the tourist spots our friendly R Navigator, Aod, brought us to during our stay:
Based on our more youthful profile, we visited the “Grandpa and Grandma Rocks” (Hin Ta and Hin Yai), rock formations in Koh Samui famous for looking like… …genitalia. Depicted here is the ‘Grandpa rock’, named as such for obvious reasons.
Think & Retro Cafe, located along the beach, was where we had one of our lunches of fresh grilled tiger prawns. Seafood in Koh Samui is amazing and I can’t get enough of it.
Samui Cultural Center and Fine Art of South East Asia.
A Cultural center constantly in construction which depicts a historic mix of culture and religion in Thailand. It’s owned and funded privately with the pure intention of educating the public for free.
Nam Tok Na Muang Waterfall 1.
Also known as Purple waterfalls, it is so named because of the striking purple hue when the sun reflects off the rocks. There are other waterfalls to visit on Koh Samui, but these are considered to be among the most scenic. Na Muang is a popular place for families to relax and swim in the waters.
Kalasea is probably one of the most popular cafes in Koh Samui, with beach front terrace tables and an assortment of coffees tending on the sweeter side. It has grown from a small single shophouse to even having its own gift shop.
Fisherman’s Village. Local trinkets, various restaurants and bars can be found in this area for you to buy any souvenirs back. Wander down the various aisles to uncover a big variety of accessories, clothings and hats. You’re in Thailand, don’t forget to bargain.
Renaissance Koh Samui Resort and Spa is the perfect place for a vacation getaway, destination wedding or executive retreat, with everything you can ask for easily handled by the hotel’s impeccable hospitality.
If you’d rather not travel out, the hotel itself provides the sun and sand, gym, restaurants and even fun activities like cooking. But if you’d like to see the sites of Koh Samui, the R Navigator program allows you to do just that, with seasoned local navigators to customize a package individual groups. Every need is accounted for at Renaissance Koh Samui for a delightful stay.
Expected Damage: From $5300 THB per night
Did you fall in love with Renaissance Koh Samui from my article? How about a 2 week long paid-for accomodation here? Just join their giveaway. Results will be announced on 17 April 2015.