Hansar Samui Featured in Wine and Dine Magazine
There is certainly nothing wrong in wanting your holiday to work for you and to be catered for in every way, especially if you’ve had enough backpacking moments to last you a lifetime jostling amongst holiday-makers for a sun-drenched beachfront spot, visiting tasteless bars and eating mediocre food, or worse of all, staying at an accommodation that perplexes you with its inattentive service and lack of amenities.
As much as Koh Samui is perceived as a picture-perfect island destination, the growing number of tourists flocking here over the last few years has caused somewhat of a dilemma for the traveller still intent on reclaiming their pristine, idyllic holiday vision of the island. However, there are still some areas that still hold on to their old-world charm and are immune to the hustle and bustle that characterise the more developed and crowded spots such as Chaweng Beach.
Bophut Beach on Samui’s northern coast is a stretch of luxury which spans about three kilometres and is home to a slew of top-notch restaurants, modern chill-out bars, trendy shops and upmarket resorts. The Fisherman’s Village marks the main attraction of this area, with old Chinese wooden shophouses that have been converted into restaurants and cafes. On Fridays nights, expect to be wowed by a ‘walking street’ full of food, clothes and jewellery stalls lining the street, along with live music and performances.
In a sense, it is forward-looking in terms of offering a myriad of lifestyle options yet retains its allure with its family-friendly focus, and not so much of the brash nightlife element that Chaweng is famous for. Within walking distance of the village, Hansar Samui offers guests seeking to escape and relax the perfect retreat. All of its 74 rooms include unobstructed sea views and spacious, open-plan set-ups with teak floors and local textiles to enforce a sense of locality. Best of all, all rooms come with private balconies complete with a daybed lounge. Premium rooms like the Sea View XL and Beachfront rooms feature freestanding bathtubs, poster beds with romantic drapings and walk-in rain showers, and are ideal for both couples and families.
All that is needed is for you to pack your essentials and leave it to the staff there to cater to your every request with their brand of Thai hospitality and impeccable service. What better way to relax and drink your bubbly than in an oversized tub in the middle of your room, or to bring up the party to your very own verandah? On both counts, our stay there at the resort showed us that really, the only thing to bring is you. We made a generic request for a wine opener and some wine glasses, and was asked if we required a champagne flute, or a red or white wine glass. To top it off, they sent up an extra ice bucket for our bottle of bubbly, without any prompting on our side. This intuitive level of attention was a welcomed surprise indeed, especially for guests looking to let their hair down during their stay. This sort of graciousness is a nice embellishment to any holiday, and is set to stay in the minds of travellers. We received trays upon trays of chocolates after mealtimes, which was part of the regular room service; got a full surround sound set up for our iPod, and also a late check-out for the 4pm flight without any haggling on our part. “We pride ourselves on not being picky about things like these which will make our guests happy,” explains general manager Indra Budiman.
Certainly making guests happy on the dining front is the H Bistro Restaurant helmed by executive chef Stephen Dion. The Canadian-born chef has chalked up a lot of culinary experience, and was even a private chef to His Majesty the King of Jordan. Other establishments he has worked at include Lebua at State Tower Bangkok and Ma Maison Restaurant at the Hilton Nai lert Park. Offering French Mediterranean cuisine in addition to a Thai menu, the focus of the beachfront restaurant is on premium ingredients such as Maine Lobster and Hokkaido Scallops, to name a few. Expect playful molecular touches to feature in Dion’s food, perfect for those seeking an option away from the regular seafood or Thai restaurants in Koh Samui.
Urban escapists can lounge by the resort’s infinity pool or by the beachside on cushioned sun beds, complete with inspiring views to neighbouring Koh Pha Ngan. For those who want a slightly more active time, water activities like jet skis, kayaking, yachting and snorkelling all readily available along the beach. Those on a regular fitness regimen even while on holiday will find that Hansar Samui’s fitness centre will fit in nicely with any exercise program they have in mind. Equipment include treadmills, elliptical trainer, upright bicycle as well as multi-station free weights. Take advantage of the ‘happy hour’ drinks special from the Beach Bar and Pool Deck, or for a more elegant, chill-out ambience, the Chill Lounge offers a variety of handpicked international wine list and an innovative cocktail menu for your drinking pleasure.
For the spa addict taking time off to fully indulge themselves during their holiday, the resort’s LUXSA Spa allows guests to create their own spa program which varies between two to seven days, which includes a specially designed spa food. The spa’s visiting Master-in- Residence programme also invites therapeutic experts share on healing wisdoms and spiritual teachings from yoga, tai chi, meditation, reiki, qi gong and so on. ‘Luxsa’ comes from the Sanskrit language and translates as “Healing – health through water”. This philosophy together with the ancient Thai healing methods based on the four body elements of earth, water, air and fire, forms the basis of the concept there. Skilled therapists work their way in renewing your body and soul with ancient massage traditions with essential oils and spices, as well as herbal baths, scrubs, wraps, pedicures and manicures. Signature treatments include the ‘LUXSA Massage’, the ‘Eastern Blend Massage’ the ‘Balancing Energy Package’ and ‘Pamper Your Partner Massage’.
With the serenity of the sea just at your doorstep to soothe your anxieties away completely, your idyllic retreat is no longer just mere vision but a reality indeed.