Koh Samui’s Top 5 super-luxury beachfront resort hotels

Super-luxury beach resorts – location makes the difference in Koh Samui

How to find the lowest hotel rates on Koh Samui
We identify hotels that guarantee, in writing, to discount below the best available on-line rates for guests who book directly with the hotel. This cuts out middlemen and saves money for both guest and hotel – and we take no commission.
See the GUARANTEE list on this page, then contact hotels directly via the e-mail box on the hotel page.
We also sell DISCOUNT ROOM VOUCHERS, the cheapest rooms available on Koh Samui beaches. These are limited & conditions apply. Just click TOP DEALS above. Contact Jade for advice anytime: jadebeachfront@gmail.com
The Guarantee list is separate from the hotels below.

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The competition between luxury, 5-star beachfront resorts is intense. All famous brands now include a well-conceived, almost standard set of facilities and luxuries in their rooms. But in famous beach destinations guests don’t stay in their rooms all day taking hours-long Jacuzzis. Even up here in the clouds, the playing field is quite level – though the competition is rather fierce.
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Adding something so special it sends a resort soaring conspicuously above its competitors is, therefore, a tough but highly regarded business strategy. Here on Koh Samui, an island full of varied beaches, bays and headlands, the choice of a spectacular location with geographic grandeur has emerged as the critical differential between the super-luxury resorts.
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All five of the hotels included here has relied heavily on this formula, selecting striking or unusual locations, then using powerful architecture and design to craft beautiful resorts into the chosen beach, hillside or headland.
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Only one of the resorts here is located on a famous beach. Six Senses and Conrad both chose to forgo beautiful beaches as their major attractions, and build onto headlands in dramatic style. Four Seasons and Banyan Tree were both lucky enough to get private bays with pretty beaches and hillsides behind on which to elevate their accommodations. Only W Retreat is on a famous beach, though this also has its own little hill that does much to impress arriving guests and define the resort.
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This site offers info pages about all aspects, and all beaches on Koh Samui:

Conrad Koh Samui – the most spectacular sunsets on the island

In its effort to create an entirely different, but outstanding world of tropical luxury, The Conrad Koh Samui traded tropical beach for a dramatic headland location. The resort is terraced up the seemingly-impossible, steep slope of the headland that marks the very southwest corner of the island. That’s the diametrically opposite corner of Koh Samui to Chaweng and the other famous beaches where most of the beachfront hotels are clustered.
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Far from ‘clustering’, the Conrad lives in a world of its own, with no habitation in sight and little seen even while approaching its remote headland. This corner of the island is sparsely inhabited and the countryside is one vast coconut plantation.
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For anyone who wants luxury in a real getaway on Koh Samui, this is definitely it. Despite that the accommodations are built tight against a steep hill slope, all have private swimming pools that almost appear to cliff-hang. Abundant foliage is fast filling all spaces between the villas. As the only resort on built high on Samui’s west coast, every room enjoys unparalleled panoramas over the ocean and islands, with the Thai mainland on the distant horizon.
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Conrad’s highlight comes daily with the setting of the sun. Interior and exterior living areas, plus the infinity pools, are all designed for the appreciation of this daily celebration of nature over a grand watery vista.
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Conrad traded beach for this privileged eagle-eye view of the ocean dotted with small islands. The small strip of sand below the resort hardly qualifies as a beach; it’s almost unswimmable due to coral and rocks. However, this corner of Samui holds many kilometres of deserted tropical beach that are easily accessed with a short drive from the resort.
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Conrad makes an excellent private retreat to return to each evening following a day’s touring or lazing on a beach. And despite its apparent isolation, the trip to the north or east side of island takes only about 20 minutes.
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Banyan Tree Samui – on a private beach between Lamai & Chaweng

Banyan Tree Samui is yet another super-luxury beachfront resort with all-pool villas surrounding its own private beach – again in a secretive location that few visitors get to see. On an east coast peninsula close to Lamai, Banyan Tree is far from the other resorts on this list.
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All accommodations are elevated on the twin hillsides overlooking the central beach, thus providing grand vistas of Samui’s rugged, rocky coast and the deep blue waters of the Gulf of Thailand. Popular Thongtakian Beach is just around a boulder-strewn headland, yet no-one on that stretch of sand can see or imagine how close they are to the especially private, privileged world of Banyan Tree.
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The resort developer showed consideration for both the environment and guests when they built on the hillsides and left all coconut-covered land behind the beach as is. This delightful coconut grove at the heart of the resort imparts of natural feel and relaxing mood to the entire property. Even the main swimming pool is set back and elevated, overlooking both beach and the coconut grove. The beach is very attractive in the tropical manner, though this too, like most Samui beaches, has little water at low tide.
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The location of Banyan Tree between Chaweng and Lamai gives relatively easy access to both of Samui’s main restaurant, nightlife and shopping beaches. It’s just 5 minutes to Lamai’s shopping and entertainment hub, and a 15-minute drive to Chaweng’s bigger, more famous nightlife strip.
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Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui – hidden on a stunning private beach

This super luxury beachfront hotel is so thoroughly hidden from view on Samui’s far northwest coast that few visitors even realize it is there, let alone have the opportunity to see it. A hill cuts off and hides the amazing little bay and beach around which Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui is built. Heavily forested hills push up steeply from the beach, with the resort’s accommodations superbly blended in among tree trunks and lush foliage. Golf carts move guests along a network of narrow trails cut through the luxuriant shrubbery, many on steep slopes.
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Four Season’s private beach is one of the prettiest on the island, bringing reflections of the South Pacific to Samui. An extensive area behind the beach is shaded by the thick groves of coconut, with some help from umbrellas. As the photos show, this is one of the most natural and relaxing beachfronts of any hotel on Samui. But as with most beaches on Samui, there is too little water for swimming at low tide.
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Many of the villas have their own small swimming or plunge pools, while the main pool lies among the coconut palms to the back of the beach. A delightful restaurant sits just above, with views of ocean, beach and pool broken by the trunks of coconut palms.
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Accommodations extend from just by the beach to high on the hillsides, catering to preferences for either beachside or panoramic views. This being a Four Seasons, the room interiors are of course beautifully designed, and carry more luxuries than are really needed – as it should be for a lavish, escapist tropical holiday.
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Six Senses Samui – built in natural materials on its own peninsula

With a name like Six Senses, we know the accommodations here will be in the super luxurious range. So the pleasant surprises that greet visitors to Six Senses Samui are, perhaps, the idyllic location and blend-into-the-environment design. Virtually impossible to see from the outside (save from a boat) Six Senses occupies an entire headland jutting from the island’s northeast coast. The shore is rocky, though on one side the resort enjoys a direct frontage onto the beach in pretty, peaceful Samrong Bay.
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The other great advantage of this headland is its close proximity to the airport – close enough to see planes coming and going across the bay, but far enough not the hear them. And it’s barely 10 minutes drive away.
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Perhaps no other resort on Koh Samui has gone to such lengths to build with natural materials; thatch roofs, wooden floors, walls & balconies, matted cane ceilings, bamboo panelling in walls and sun shades of strip bamboo and brushwood.
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Of Six Senses 56 rooms, 42 are pool villas offering a variety of ocean or beach views. All luxuries and facilities expected of a super luxurious, 5-star resort are in place. Each room or villa is cleverly angled into its hillside position to give both privacy from neighbours and the best possible view.
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Yet the most memorable part of the Six Senses Samui experience may come from Dining on the Rocks. The remarkable series of elevated decks protrudes, at different angles, out over the shore at the headland’s extremity. Built entirely in wood and bamboo, this atmospheric restaurant presents one of the grandest views found on the island. And those guests lucky enough to be here during the full moon may experience one of the most memorable, or romantic, dining experiences of all.
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W Retreat Koh Samui – outstanding design, beautiful hill & beach location

The ‘W’ name is synonymous with super luxury, and here in Samui few would be disappointed with this true beachfront property on the island’s northern shore. It’s the group’s first entry into the Thai market, and not surprisingly, they secured quite a spectacular location that puts the reception, a bar and restaurant on top of a quaint, stand-alone hill that provides grand panoramas. Just in front of W Retreat Koh Samui a unique sand spit juts out into the ocean where the currents from Bophut and Maenam beaches clash, creating a nice setting for swimming or laying about in sand and water.
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The cutting edge design employed in W Retreat begins right by the hilltop lobby, where a stunning, sunken bar provides infinity water vistas across pool and ocean to Koh Phangan and other islands. Nearby, huge murals dominate the lobby’s lounge area. Immediately below, where it still enjoys the high panoramic vistas, the resort’s primary restaurant displays a striking blend of imaginative form and colourful decor. No less creative is the beach-side deck cum bar and restaurant, where strong colours of the lounge cushions contrast against wood, rock and bamboo.
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The accommodations in W Retreat are, needless to say, both stylish and very luxurious. The villa-style rooms slumber down by the beach. Pool villas come in three configurations, with some just steps from the sand, thus affording both salt and fresh water swimming. Some have private pools as big as 50 sqm – bigger than many normal hotel rooms, though their ultimate villa offers a pool of 137 sqm.
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Other rooms – the ‘standard’ equivalent in W Retreat – are set into the hillside towards the back, thus trading beachfront proximity for grand views of beach and ocean.
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by John Everingham

hotels in this destination

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