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“Idyllic Hotel on Koh Samui” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Waterfront

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The Waterfront
Ranked #26 of 187 Hotels in Bophut
Certificate of Excellence
Mansfield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
91 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 93 helpful votes
“Idyllic Hotel on Koh Samui”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 13, 2013

This is our third stay at the Waterfront and in our opinion it continues to provide a complete relaxing holiday in paradise. On this occasion we had toured New Zealand for two weeks and were looking to chill out before returning home and it is certainly living up to our expectations again.

As I write this review I am sat on the beach overlooking Koh Pragnan and the beautiful turquoise sea of the Gulf of Thailand and what could be more idyllic. In the knowledge you are being provided with exceptional hospitality by the Waterfront's delightful staff.

We have previously reviewed the Waterfront in our profile and would only be repeating ourselves in relation to the rooms and facilities offered. Everyone who stays here have differing opinions and 99% rate the Waterfront extremely complimentary.Perhaps the seven or eight who have provided an alternative view have not considered the cost of staying at the Waterfront when compiling their views and opinions, compared to other hotels in Thailand.

In relation to Bophut village the restaurants and bars appear to be finding the world wide recession difficult compared to previous years. Many are empty and are vying for custom and the atmosphere has disappeared, you can at times be the only people dining with around four waiters hovering around the table. Slightly disconcerting and worrying for the Thai people who are totally dependent on tourists

Thanks once again to Sue and Robin and all the delightful Thai staff who continue to provide wonderful holidays in paradise and with this in mind I am now going to book for another stay next year.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank DaveSchnauzer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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937 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
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Worthing, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 10, 2013

I have just read a less than complimentary review regarding the waterfront. I will not repeat my exact reaction but it was along the lines of "well that is jolly inaccurate".

I have stayed at the waterfront three times in previous years and I shall be returning there with my girlfriend in Sept '13. The hotel is run incredibly well, Robin and Sue take time to sit and have a chat and drink with you when you arrive and are genuinely interested in who you are, where you come from and what you do. This is not simply hospitality for hospitality's sake, the whole team are people people and treat you more as a friend than a customer. When I first stayed at the waterfront I was amazed when Robin told me that the only rule they really have is to be considerate of your fellow guests I quote "if you want a swim at three or four in the morning help yourself, just remember that there are people sleeping in the rooms around you".

The staff all cover reception, the bar and food service and all work as a team, they are always happy and greet you with a big smile and cannot do enough to help you and make your holiday what you want it to be. The service is swift, efficient and polite and has never fallen below my expectations.

Robin and Sues' son Michael is very much involved in the running of the hotel and speaks Thai incredibly well. On our last visit he met us from the airport and drove us to the hotel, during the drive he was chatty and friendly, I don't believe what was said in a previous review about him being intoxicated as the whole team have always been very professional and that behaviour would not be accepted. Michael shares his parents customer service approach to things, I asked him how I would go about hiring a car for the day, he replied "do you want mine? I don't need it" how often do you get that?! Michael also drove us back to the airport at the end of our stay, this is all included in the cost of your room.

The atmosphere of the hotel is very relaxed, sure there are fancier places to stay on Samui but The Waterfront strikes the perfect balance of being clean modern and professional without having an air of elitism, truly a what you see is what you get establishment. I have always felt more like I was staying with friends than in a hotel.

The rooms are cleaned everyday and are left spotless, they are modern and clean, tiled throughout and air conditioned with modern furnishings, there is a fridge, tv, dvd player and safe in each room. Wifi is available and is free so you can email people at home to tell them how great a holiday you are having.

The grounds are immaculate, the flower beds and grass are very well tended which adds to the pleasure of spending your time in the tropical environment. The whole area is sprayed regularly to keep mosquitos away. Yes the pool is on the small side but it is more than big enough to cool off in before returning to your sunbed which is more like a big arm chair. The bar next to the pool is a shady spot in which to hide from the sun (that's what I told the girlfriend anyway!) During the daytime it is staffed by the girls that cover reception and serve food and by night it is staffed by two guys that double as security guards. The night cover guys are fantastic. Orr speaks very good english and is keen to learn more from you, his colleague (I cannot remember his name I'm afraid) is learning english as well. On our last visit my girlfriend drank all of the pimms, Orr noticed this when he came on duty the next day and went to the shops in the village to get another bottle for her, this is over and above if you ask me. I have never seen anymore than 7 people at the bar during the evening, 2 of which were Robin and Sue who were there having a chat and a drink with guests.

The food is brilliant with a massive selection available of Thai and western dishes and is available all through the day. Food service stops in the evening as Sue and Robin are keen for you to try the many restaurants in the village. They would make more money from providing evening meals but I think it is nice that they supply the local restaurantures with custom.

The village is very nice, it is all on one street and has a selection of bars and restaurants as well as a few places to get a tailor made suit or dress made just for you for about (£70).

In conclusion if you are looking for somewhere modern, clean and friendly that won't break the bank, set in beautiful grounds looking out over turquoise water in a village that is full of places to eat, drink and relax then this is the place. We cannot wait to visit again.

Best wishes to all at The Waterfront.
Neil and Tracey.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank neil m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
watford
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 10, 2013

Spent 4 weeks Jan/Feb our 6th. visit amounting to 19 weeks in total so feel qualified to comment. Sadly have to agree with some of the previous contribitors comments. Some linen does need replacing and breakfast can be a bit haphazard (some supervision in the mornings would help) but sitting in the sun with a wonderful view of Koh Phangan in front and to the right the coast towards Big Bhudda, how hard is it to wait a few minutes?
No the beach is not wonderful but the gardens and the views make up for it. It is a tidal river so quite how Sue and Robin can control the flotsam is beyond me.
Yes the sea bed is a bit stony but if you walk 100 yards up the beach (hardly an onerous task in warm sunshine) it is much sandier. My husband swims every morning before breakfast and we both swim several times during the day with little or no problems.
Sue and Robin intrusive? I don't think so - unless you consider having to answer questions on which football team you support and do you like cricket intrusive - as for Sue she just likes people..... I sometimes wonder why I have to say!
I'm glad they replied to the comments about the power cut - I would like to have commented but not sure it would have been printed! And the comment about the aerosols - well could they not be there for another reason?!!!
Yes there are some things that are not perfect but mostly they can be sorted. The biggest irritation for us I'm afraid, is non residents using the facilities for the price of a sandwich or bottle of beer whilst we are paying considerably more. In the main the people who stay here and sorry there really are lots who return each year, are charming, interesting and great fun. However should you not wish to mix that's o.k. too.
If it is as bad as some of the commments would have us believe so many return - I think not.
You really cannot please everybody however had one might try!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Watfordcarbels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, England, United Kingdom
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 8, 2013

I can only speak from my own experience of staying at The Waterfront and as I have stayed there 8 times I know this place very well. This time I went alone but have been with friends and family and it is always amazing.
Not only is it immaculate it is entertaining with stunning gardens and a pretty beach.
Sue Robin Michael and all the staff are delightful.
The bar is always busy with guests and locals that pop by, they are always welcome time and time again.
The pool is a perfect temp and the loungers are so comfy you just fall asleep!
In a nutshell this place has it all, don't even look any where else. Bophut fisher mans village is the prettiest place to stay in Samui and The Waterfront is at the quiet end of the village which works well.
Now with the walking street market on Fridays in the village it's even better here than my last visit.
I'm going back to the waterfront Christmas can't wait!
Thank you The Waterfront your biggest fan Hayley

Room Tip: I always have a one bedroom beachfront bungalow with a view to sea, lush gardens all around. This i...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Hayley H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sidcup, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
23 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 7, 2013

Just returned from our 3rd stay at the Waterfront, once again we had a wonderful stay in this small and friendly hotel.
Robin and Sue are perfect hosts and the staff are always friendly and helpful the hotel is in a perfect location, a short stroll to the village with it's amazing collection of restaurants and bars, would highly recommend 56 and Seaside but in all honesty we didn't have a bad meal in the 2 weeks we were there.

The Waterfront is an ideal base if you want to explore the Island but even better if you just like lazing in the sun.

We are heading off to pastures new next year but have no doubt that we will be returning to the Waterfront in the near future

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Al+Lyn-UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cheshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
29 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 6, 2013

I can't believe everyone is so happy staying at the waterfront.
I was so disappointed in this hotel after all the excellent reviews on tripadvisor,
Before I start you can check out my other hotel reviews on trip advisor, I always give my honest opinion good or bad!

At check in we were given a free welcome drink by one of the Thai staff, then we were given a questionnaire card to fill in which I found a bit intrusive, unnecessary and time consuming. Who wants all this fuss after a long haul flight to Thailand? Other hotels take a quick copy of your passport (job done).

We were eventually shown to I think the only room in the hotel without a sea view (room No 4). The room was tiny with just enough space to walk around the bed, this was reflected in the size of the T.V. or should I say 14 inch computer monitor. The room was aged and tired but fantastic compared to the dark dingy and smelly bathroom, the horrible chocolate brown tiles belong back in seventies, whenever we turned on the shower we got disgusting smell of stagnant water from the drain, I'm not sure if other guests had this problem but every bathroom was supplied with a large can of air freshener. This problem may be caused by what looks like sewage tanks just outside our room. (Check photos).

Like many tourists I holiday in Thailand for the nice weather and lovely beaches with warm seas you can swim in, This hotel is located on the worst part of Bophut beach , It's totally unsuitable for swimming with sharp stones under foot and a smelly river depositing all kinds of rubbish and sewage into the sea.( check photos) This leaves the only other option which is the hot tub, (sorry I mean swimming pool :-)). The size of the pool is mentioned numerous times on trip advisor.

After a nice evening meal we returned to the hotel bar to be greeted for the first time by Robin, Sue and son Michael the English family who run the waterfront.
They get a lot of praise on trip advisor but I found them to be quite intrusive and felt like I was been interrogated for my life story. The son was quite intoxicated and was making fun of other English guests and there accents. Those guests laughed it off but it may offend some other people.
For the rest of our stay I found Robin & Sue a bit over the top with their hospitality which gave me the impression of it not being genuine.
Some British tourists love the taste of home while on holiday but I found them totally out of place in Thailand, I prefer hotels run by local Thai's , there are plenty of Robin & Sue's running B&B's back in England if want that sort of holiday.

Unfortunately for the Thai staff at the hotel Michael as learned to speak Thai and this reflected in their body language when he is around them, they don't look happy in their jobs compared to staff in other Thai hotels I've stayed in.

There wasn't much I liked about my stay at this hotel, but I would like to praise the Thai chef who provided us with some lovely food.

To sum up I think this hotel is an overpriced 2 star B&B; I stayed the previous 3 nights in a 3 star hotel in Lamai beach which was far superior and was £20 a night cheaper! Don't make the mistake I made and only read the good reviews, there are better hotels than this one in Bophut.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
17 Thank lpool63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
78 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 6, 2013 via mobile

My husband and I stayed here for over a week while on holiday and have nothing but good things to say about it. We loved the location - a few minutes walk from the center of Fisherman's Village, but nice and quiet with its own section of beach. The pool, the beach, the garden, everything was lovely. Our room was clean and tidy, with an amazingly comfortable bed (which can be hard to find in Thailand). I am super surprised by the negative reviews found on here; our towels, shower, linens, etc. were pristine. The power did go out once during our stay, and we were immediately supplied with a flashlight. Hey, you're on an island in Thailand, sometimes the power goes out!

Breakfast on the veranda was a great way to start each day. Our eggs were cooked to order, and the staff was attentive. Yes, I had to ask for marmalade once, and it promptly appeared! We saw the owner around every day, and he chatted with us several times. We thought this place was great. We have been many places in Thailand now and would happily stay here again.

Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank BounceMonster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Waterfront

Property: The Waterfront
Address: 71/2 Moo1, Bophut, Ko Samui 84320, Thailand
Location: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Ko Samui > Bophut
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#8 Family Hotel in Bophut
#12 Romantic Hotel in Bophut
#23 On the Beach Hotel in Bophut
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — The Waterfront 3*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Family run, small, select and peaceful, yet only steps away from excellent restaurants, bars and boutiques.All rooms are beachfront and the view of the sea and outlying islands is spectacular. Many guests extend their stay, recommend us to others or return themselves, often to meet other guests who have now become friends. Its like coming home, they say. Lots of little touches to make you feel welcome including free pick-up and free internet. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Waterfront Hotel Bophut
Waterfront Hotel Bophut
Waterfront Bophut
The Waterfront Ko Samui/Bophut

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