We stayed at Santhiya the last week in July and had the most amazing experience. After looking online for countless hours, we were torn between the Anantara and Santhiya. We are so happy we chose Santhiya.
The resort itself is incredible. It is big and sprawling over the span of a large hill. It is a very peaceful and calming place and the Northern Thai teak architecture is incredible, with incredible and intricate detail everywhere. Everything was clean and well maintained. While it is true that some of the wood is ready to be re-stained/finished, we thought it actually added a little to the feel of the place. It certainly is not run-down or in disrepair. We stayed in a Pool Villa and loved it. We enjoyed our private pool at least once a day and loved the outdoor bathroom/shower. Our villa was totally private with no one able to see into our villa or pool area. We took advantage the entire property, including the main pool and kayaks in the ocean. We discovered the upper pool later into our stay and fell in love--it was so quiet and absolutely relaxing, with the most incredible floating pool loungers ever and an amazing view.
The staff was incredible--attentive, polite and there to help. We got to know several of them and they were all great people, including the general manager with whom we had a few conversations.
Although the resort's own beach leaves a little to be desired, a 3 minute walk gets you to an incredible white sand beach. We were shocked by how quiet it was. We walked from one end to the other on a hot sunny day and only bumped into a handful of people. It felt like we were on our own deserted island. Just amazing. There are plenty of places to get food/drink on the beach and all of our experiences at the local places were great. We especially like Jip Shop in town--the owners were great and food was amazing.
Our meals at Santhiya were all great. Breakfast is simply amazing with an international spread, including fruits, veggies, breads/Danishes/croissants, American/European and Asian items. We kept laughing about how we ended up with breakfast plates with Asian noodles, pancakes, and fruit. While not cheap, the restaurant was priced reasonably for American standards. Certainly, you can get cheaper meals off the resort. But, the quality and presentation of the food at Santhiya was great. As it was our honeymoon, we took advantage of the 'private dining' option, and had a private dinner on the beach which was incredible.
We don't have anything bad to say about Santhiya, although it may not be for everyone. It is sort of an 'eco' resort--with a lot of the resort being outdoors. The bathrooms in the villas are all outside. So, yes, there are ants, mosquitos and the occasional bug and you may come across them while showering or on the toilet. Indeed, one night we discovered that an ant colony had taken over our pool area--literally thousands of ants traveling in a river-like pattern. It was like we were watching national geographic. We called the front desk and, within 10 minutes, the ants had been eliminated... Also, it is on a big hill and things are spread out. So, you will have to do some walking. They do have little cars which take you from the main restaurant to your villa and they were always available and ready to bring us home. We never waited once. Also, if you're looking for a lot of action, fancy restaurants, and nightlife, there's really nothing here for you. It is quiet, secluded, serene and totally relaxing. The town is more of a village with small open air causal restaurants. The final thing which struck us as a little bit weird was that our villa did not have a bureau or any other furniture for us to unpack our clothes, so we had to live out of the suitcase.
Tips: Pay the money and take the speed boat from Samui. You will regret not doing it. It is 100 percent worth it. Go to either or both of the neighboring beaches. Don't wait to leave the property and explore the little town/beaches. Take a taxi boat to the further of the two neighboring beaches. Hit the upper pool to read/relax. It's awesome.
For those comparing Santhiya/Anantara: Anantara is much smaller than it looks online. Yes, it sits on a beautiful beach and the restaurant looked pretty cool (we didn't eat there). But, you can walk from Santhiya in 5 minutes and sit on the same sand and eat in the same restaurant. In our view, Santhiya offers so much more.
For those considering Samui vs. Phangan, we spent 1/2 day on Chaweng beach on Samui and were stunned by how developed and busy it was (and, frankly, a little dirty). Phangan seemed so quiet and serene. If you're looking for a lot of people and a good party and lots to do, Samui would probably be better. If you're looking for beautiful beaches, quiet breezes, and serenity, Phangan would be the better choice.
Obviously, we absolutely loved it for our honeymoon.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dear Khun Josh_L6074,
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Sawasdee krab.......Greetings from Santhiya Koh Phangan Resort & Spa - Traditional Thai Style beach resort.
It is absolutely our great pleasure to read your fantastic review, and thank you so much for choosing Santhiya Koh Phangan Resort & Spa as your honeymoon destination. All know that Honeymoon Trip is one of the most important trip for the couple, and we are glad that we are your “Best Honeymoon Experience”. We must say that you are another great ambassador of our resort. Your long and accurate information and description about our resort, its staff, services, location, meals, decoration and many more are just fantastic. Your words make us feel that you really get into the deep touch of our hard work or wooden “arts” in the resort. I remember having a chat with you while you were wondering around the resort with the camera, and I remember how happy you are. I would say that our guests’ happiness is our aim, and we appreciate Happy Travelers such as you.
May I also add that your descriptions of beautiful location, privacy of the villa, great breakfast, stunning pool both on the beach and on the hill as well as friendly and helpful team members and manager are the great reward for our hard work. We promise to keep on our toes.
One last thanks to the tips you mentioned. These are a great tips for the readers.
We hope you will make a 2nd visit to our resort again soon.
Best wishes to lovely couple.
Santhiya Koh Phangan Resort & Spa
Koh Phangan, Surat Thani, Thailand
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.