Just returned from a romantic 3 nights in Soneva Kiri and haven't had such mixed feelings about a property in some time. On the up side, it is simply one of the most stunningly beautiful and tastefully created destinations you will probably ever find. The private plane ride on to the private airstrip, then a boat ride to the resort instantly sets you up with a sense that this is going to be special, and it doesn't disappoint. We stayed in a beachside villa which had an amazing infinity pool and lovely view, was incredibly spacious and so well designed (and private!). The main complex which you reach by your own golf cart is also superb! Picture modernist architecture done with wood, canvas and bamboo. Food is excellent and the dining at the restaurant in the mangrove is not to be missed. Not to mention the whisky cellar, ice cream bar (!!!) and chocolate room. Yes, a room devoted to chocolate. And the beach is beautiful beyond words (though infested with sand flies, so bring repellent). So far so good right? Wrong. I strongly believe that you can have the most stunning property on offer and ruin it completely with inconsistent and shoddy service. Our host (Mrs. Friday as they called her) was a dear, but unfortunately her spoken english was quite rough and made it very difficult to organize the simplest of things. We had similar difficult interactions with many of the staff who truly tried their best, but we had more than one lost-in-translation moment. I usually take this in stride and actually enjoy this aspect of travel, but you are rather dependent on your host to arrange many things so it does become a problem. Another issue is that some of their services are not available and they do not inform you before arriving - the vaunted tree-pod dining experience was out of action for maintenance and the waterfall picnic and dining was not available either. The spa was ho-hum, and not as good value for money as you can find in the other properties. And last but not least was the sleep quality. We did travel in the hottest season of the year and I had checked in advance whether the rooms have A/C, which we were assured they did. Indeed, the A/C unit is there, but it is at the back of the room (which is huge, so by 'back' I mean 5+ meters from the bed) and has absolutely no effect on the temperature at all. You need to have the mosquito net down as well so the room quickly becomes oven-like and sleep is hard to find. Heavier investment in service quality will move Soneva truly into the top leagues where it belongs.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Remote yet accessible, Soneva Kiri sits on Thailand's fourth largest but least populated island, Koh Kood, in the Gulf of Siam. Surrounded by lush, vibrant tropical vegetation and white beaches, fringed with palm trees, the resort has been tastefully and cleverly designed to complement the landscape and blends seamlessly into the outstanding natural beauty. Soneva Kiri epitomises the Soneva concept of 'intelligent luxury'. Only an hour's flight in the resort's private plane from Bangkok, it feels a million miles from the real world. The sense of tranquillity, seclusion and harmony with nature is second to none. Far away from the beaten track and well-trodden tourist attractions this is Thailand as it used to be thirty or even fifty years ago, genteel and untainted. And also just one hour by boat from the wonders of Cambodia. The 35 pool villa resort is perfect for groups or families, as it provides villas with up to 6 bedrooms. It also has a unique children's den in the form of a manta ray, and a newly launched Intrepid Explorer's Club for the children under 5 years old. It was recently awarded with The Smith Award "Best for Families" from Mr. & Mrs. Smith. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Soneva Kiri By 6 Senses
- Soneva Kiri By Six Senses Hotel Koh Kood