Nov 11 2012
Akaryn Samui on Ko Samui’s Choeng Mon Beach offers pool suites and villas that give you a lot for your dollar, pound or euro if you’ve got extra to spend and are looking for a modern, splurge-y place to stay. Located midway between Choeng Mon proper and Chaweng, the position is ideal for those wanting peace and quiet away from busy Chaweng, but close enough to enjoy the nightlife should you want to.
All rooms have a private pool of varying size, as well as access to the resort’s beachfront pools that are worthy of a mention. One has a swim-up pool bar and a huge rim flow that cascades into a pool below. Drinks are not cheap, in line with upper end resorts, but during happy hour from 18:00, it’s a buy-one-get-one free deal, making them more affordable. But what makes this pool special is the champagne seating area: a sleek, black granite table, sunken into the pool with its surface millimetres above the water, making the glasses of bubbly appear to float.
The second pool lies just behind, facing the restaurant. This pool comes to life on Friday evenings when a white screen is lowered as the sky darkens, and movies are projected. The pool is filled with floating loungers, and the deck is laid with bean bags. Now that’s the way to watch a movie!
Akaryn has two restaurants. The Edge is a relaxed, casual dining venue alongside the pool and overlooking the sea, serving tapas, pizza, sandwiches and some modern Thai dishes. This is also where breakfast is served. Also near the pool, but with more of a dining room feel, The Legends menu presents traditional Thai dishes. The decor is warm and sophisticated, with wooden furniture, Thai-style chandeliers and a vaulted ceiling. Tables are also available under the tree and on the rocks overlooking the beach.
Getting back to the accommodation — the suites, which come with plunge pools, are spacious and reasonably priced, starting at around 6,000 baht. It may not be worth paying more than double for the pool villas, which are larger, and come with eight-metre pools. Suites feature iPods with a music library, flat screen TV with cable channels, WiFi, Egyptian cotton bedlinen, fully-stocked minibars and tea and coffee making facilities. The suites and villas are all positioned to offer the most privacy possible, with hedges rather than walls forming the boundaries and softening the effect.
Other facilities at Akaryn include a fitness room, spa, boutique, yoga classes and a library. The resort hosts weddings and functions, should you decide to tie the knot on the island.
Those preferring something a little cheaper but in the vicinity may want to try nearby Honey Cottages on the main Choeng Mon beach. While there, do try some chicken and sticky rice or a grilled corn from Mr Coppi’s beach kitchen.
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