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“Fantastic resort, staff and location”

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Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas
Ranked #2 of 92 Hotels in Ko Pha Ngan
Certificate of Excellence
Douglas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Fantastic resort, staff and location”
Reviewed September 26, 2012

My husband and I have just returned from the most relaxing 10 night stay at the Anantara Rasananda. We booked a lagoon pool villa which was perfect in every way, beautifully decorated bedroom and lovely bathroom, the pool seemed larger than those provided with the beach front villas and better privacy. Special mention has to go to Rin who looked after our room during our stay, great attention to detail, my husband mentioned that he was bitten by mosquitoes, the following day she returned with lemongrass balm to help the itching.

As other reviewers have mentioned the beach is pristine and offers white sand, in my opinion much better than any other beach on Koh Pagnan where the sand can be quite coarse. There were a few dogs on the beach as mentioned by others which were friendly and appreciated a little bit of attention, if it was easy to bring them back to the UK I would!

The small village behind the resort offered a varied choice of restaurants, Luna was one of our favourites as you could not fault the food or service. We only ate breakfast at the resort as we enjoyed exploring the different options in the village. I would also like to mention Tua who works in the restaurant, she was very helpful , she remembered everyone's name!

There aren't many resorts where we would visit more than once as we enjoy visiting different places however I am counting the days until we return to the Rasananda, fantastic resort, staff and location, thank you.

Room Tip: The Lagoon Pool Villas offer better privacy
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Anna G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GM-Rasananda, General Manager at Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas, responded to this review, October 1, 2012
Dear Anna G

Thank you very much for this wonderful review. I have noted your praise for Khun Rin and Khun Tua and will surely pass on my thanks to them for the special care and attention they gave you. I also would take this opportunity to share more information on the local dogs as there are regular comments and questions being raised.

Thong Nai Pan Noi has a small number of local resident dogs, as do most beaches in Thailand. For most guests, and particularly those who return to Thailand, they are charmed by their free disposition and gentle nature. I'm yet to experience an aggressive dog and they all seem to have a clever instinct to only approach those who welcome the interaction.

We support a local volunteer veterinary service called PAC or Phangan Animal Care and they routinely visit our beach to check, vaccinate, de-sex and generally assist the welfare of these animals. They all have homes but are free to spend their day playing with beach goers, locals or digging in the sand for crabs. For most, they are a welcome and charming part of the beach culture and should not be feared.

Your desire to return is the highest praise we can hope to achieve and we look forward to welcoming you back very soon. Please allow me to personally assist with your next Adventure

Best Regards

Mark Eletr
Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan
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New York City, New York
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed September 25, 2012

My number one complaint is that I was not aware of how secluded the hotel was. Not many of the reviews mention this, but if you do not want to be completely isolated, do not stay here. If you are looking for a complete romantic getaway, this resort is beautiful and definitely for you.

Just a heads up, the options for getting to the hotel are limited:
1. $300 (per couple) private speed boat pick up from Koh Samui and drop off at Anantara
2. $180 (per couple) scheduled speed boat pick up from Koh Samui and drop off at Anantara
- The issue with this is that our plane did not arrive until 4:30PM, and this was after the last scheduled speed boat pick up. Which I am confused by since our flight is only 1 of 2 flights into Koh Samui on Thai Airways. So then our only option was the private boat.

We took the ferry from Koh Samui to Koh Phangan for around $10 per person. Not a terrible option, although not luxurious in any way. When we arrived at the pier in Koh Phangan we looked for a taxi. Our only option was a $50 taxi ride. (Apparently the hotel offered to pick us up at the pier in one of their modern trucks, but there must have been a miscommunication because we did not realize that was an option)

If I knew the condition of the roads to get to the hotel from the beginning, I would have paid anything to avoid the terrible trip getting to the hotel. It was raining, we were in one of those old pick up trucks that kept stalling out on the hills, they are dirt roads, and it was dark. Had I been informed of this I would have paid the $300. (Which was equivalent to a little less than the price we were paying for 1 night at the hotel... a price I find quite offensive for transportation, but regardless, I would have paid).

Our main issue is that the hotel is completely isolated from the rest of Koh Phangan. Haad Rin is the main town and as I mentioned, it is 45 minutes away via taxi over less than pleasant roads. If you are coming here for a moon festival, definitely do not stay here. It's a shame that the hotel does not offer free nightly transportation into Haad Rin. The "town" that other reviews speak of is barely a town. There are a few restaurants (none of the quality of the restaurant in the hotel, so I suggest you just eat at the hotel) and a few massage parlors (although they can't be compared to the spa in the hotel). But I would barely call the surrounding area a "town"... especially if you have seen the towns surrounding the beaches in Koh Samui... absolutely no comparison when it comes to options.

In the end, we decided to leave the hotel early. In addition to us feeling there was not much for us to do around the hotel, we had a terrible interaction with the motor bike rental company right outside the hotel. In all fairness to the hotel, we were warned not to rent a motorbike, however, we own dirt bikes and a motorcycle, so we felt we were up for the challenge. We took the bike to the waterfalls (which were beautiful), and got a few scratches on the plastic. There was no fall or anything, just average wear and tear on the dirt bike. When we returned from our trip, the rental company charged us $500 in replacement parts. This was obviously a scam... especially when we were told the company had done the same thing to another couple only an hour earlier, but since we were asked to give one of our passports as a deposit, we had no choice but to pay. DO NOT RENT FROM THIS BIKE COMPANY!

Ultimately, the resort is beautiful, our villa was perfect (lagoon pool villa), and the staff is nothing but exceptional. Our personal experience may be unique given the amount of outstanding reviews this hotel has received... and trust me, if you go, when you see the hotel, you will not be disappointed. But I would warn you that unless you are looking for a romantic getaway far from real civilization, this may not be the place for you.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Kayla B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GM-Rasananda, General Manager at Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas, responded to this review, October 31, 2012
Dear Kayla B

Thank you for sharing your feedback and also the detailed communications we have since shared after your stay. It is unfortunate that your expectations were not met in regards to our location but I'm sure that most readers will see this as very appealing.

Koh Samui and Phuket offer endless choice of convenience but we dare to be different, we dare to have a nice degree of separation from the well trodden path and this is what makes us so unique and our atmosphere so serene.

I would encourage all readers to make themselves aware of where we are and how to get here before setting dates and booking flights. There is adequate information on our website anantara dot com to properly present all of the options. As you will read in many reviews, it is absolutely worth using the resort speedboat services which gives the highest level of comfort and convenience. Most guests who endure the public ferry and taxi options gladly upgrade and join our speedboat service on the return.

You are right in regards to the motor bike rental options on Koh Phangan, we don't recommend these to any of our guests and have limited power to interview when it so often goes wrong.

As always, I encourage future guests to contact me directly if I can help with any pre-trip planning to ensure the ultimate holiday experience.

Best Regards

Mark Eletr
General Manager
Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed September 21, 2012

My husband and I enjoyed 3 nights at the Rasananda at the end of our 14 night honeymoon. From the moment we were greeted off the speed boat from Koh Samui by the general manager, through to the trip to the local town, to the screening The Beach on the beach, to the smiles from the staff...all just top class.

The beach was spotless and the sea clear and rock-free for a long way out!

We had booked a Pool View Villa but were offered a discounted upgrade to an Ocean View when we arrived which we couldn't refuse.

Quite a few stray dogs on the beach, but all very well behaved and if you don't like them the staff will get rid of them.

Excellent choice at breakfast and very nice Thai wine which we tried with dinner one night.

The complimentary cocktail evening was a great touch and introduced us to a few other couples - not to mention the amazing cherry flavoured liquior!

We just loved it...all of it...and want to go back for longer!

We treated ourselves to spa treatement on our last day - I had the stress one and my husband had a swedish one - we were treated in the same room and it was absolutely amazing - that spa is really something else. I didn't know what day it was when it was finished!

Room Tip: Ocean View is definitely worth the money
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank Lou D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peterborough, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed September 18, 2012

We spent the second week of our honeymoon in this idyllic paradise, it was amazing! We stayed in one of the Lagoon Pool Villas and these were just perfect, they are private and out of the way, no one can walk past your room and see in, a private pool which is blissful in the early evening and the in room entertainment was brilliant, a few nights we just ordered room service and enjoyed the benefits of Apple TV! The room itself was lovely, nice big comfortable bed, well stocked mini bar, attractively designed, there isn’t one complaint. The staff are incredibly friendly without being overbearing, and the service is excellent. The hotel restaurant is great, and with the added bonus of dining on the sand! The beach is amazing, white sand and warm crystal clear sea water, just what you would expect from a paradise island. We would recommend taking the short walk down the road to visit the restaurant ‘Better Than Sex’ the food is amazing and such good value. We made a few trips to the spa during our stay and I would definitely recommend it, the place is beautiful and the spa menu is exceptional. On our last night we had a dinner on the beach experience and couldn’t have asked for anymore. This is by far the nicest hotel we have ever stayed in and are hoping to return in the next 12months, I couldn’t recommend it more. To sum up in one word – Perfect.

Room Tip: Logoon Pool Villas are luxurious but more private that the Ocean Front rooms.
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank CatHarper1002
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed September 16, 2012

Again we face the dilemma of telling the world about this perfect slice of paradise & the consequent increase in demand & its obvious flow through effect.
This is our second visit to Rasananda in 12 months which speaks for itself. The location is what you would expect from the "dream" post card beach resort surrounded by a mountainous backdrop of tropical rain forest & coconut palms. Unlike many of the beaches in Thailand which can be sludgy this beach is sandy & beautiful for swimming or just walking in the water.
What makes this relatively boutiquey resort special are the staff. Fon, Tua, Noi & Julia and all of them are just plain happy people who love what they do and are proud of their resort. The GM, Mark is a "hands on" guy who is always ready to get involved & help you with any issues...something not that common in most resorts.
The little village behind the resort has recently undergone some roadworks & building refurbishment which has really given the whole area a wonderful aura.
The rooms are relatively large and all are close to the beach with Apple TV. Need to have the Mosquito coils lit at 4 PM daily should be a staff task.
As this was our second time in a short period we were able to compare the food with our first visit for the resort & the restaurants in the village. The resort breakfast this time was disappointing. Previously we had an "a la carte" breakfast menu which included freshly prepared Asian & non Asian food. The buffet was also previously more comprehensive with an excellent fruit selection. This time the food was cold, the buffet selection considerably less & the wonderful a la carte choices significantly diminished. I raised this with the GM & he advised that a proposal was going to the owners to bring new food infrastructure in which would keep the food hot. Also the new chef had only been there for a month and was still acclimatising himself with the system. We had stayed the previous week at Zazen on Samui & the breakfast there was superb.
The two restaurants which we thought were very good last year & had a high Trip Advisor rating ( Better than Sex & Luna ) were both dissapointing & no longer worthy of a high recommendation. The Bamboo Hut was excellent as it was last year. The food at Jips was also very good but the waiting time too long as it was last year. ( I had too many cold beers waiting !!)
So.. overall? We'll be back for certain. A beautiful place with wonderful people. Its for adults. Not suitable for kids, as there is no infrastructure. Considerable thought needs to go into the food side of things both at the resort & in the village.
Thanks to all of the staff for another great stay. Chris & Jane Taylor Sydney, Australia

Room Tip: All the rooms are close to the beach & relatively large. As there are only 64 units there is ver...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank tayls1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
67 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed September 9, 2012

Well appointed rooms and villas, lovely location and stylish public areas (restaurant, pool, bar etc) but what sets this hotel apart is the excellent, friendly service from the staff. They are invisible until you have a vague thought that you might need something and then they magically appear with a smile. The very approachable manager and the hard-working executive team (Head Chef, 'wine guru' ) are always around keeping things on track. I won't reiterate others descriptions of rooms etc (see photos) but I would make the point that when you consider the hotel's overheads, the services aren't really overpriced and certainly no more expensive than London. Massage is cheaper in the village but Rasanada's spa is an architect-designed Xanadu-esque paradise, not a bamboo hut full of mosquitoes. The same goes for food and drink: the village is cheaper but the value-added at the hotel (really talented band at BBQ and great dancers at Thai buffet night) makes it worth it. We ate in the village on alternative nights and found a good balance. We will be going back as soon as we can.

Room Tip: Do get the hotel's speedboat; it's much less hassle and a dramatic arrival too. The sea-vie...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank small_world_team
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canberra, Australia
Level Contributor
15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed September 8, 2012

We were in desperate need of time out and Anantara provided the most perfect place to unwind and relax. This is the only resort we have been to that matches the advertising and even surpassed our expectations. The accommodation is nothing short of spectacular and our garden pool room provided the privacy and peace and quiet we wanted. The public areas of pool, bar and restaurant on the beach just reinforced the relaxed atmosphere of this 6 star resort. Dining shoeless with your toes in the sand whilst eating the most decadent food was a real pleasure. Nui in the restaurant should be classified as a natural treasure but all the staff really make you feel special and nothing is too much trouble. If even the tinest thing is not right the manager immediately gets it fixed. One more day of sheer bliss but I have no doubt this is one destination we will return to

I

Room Tip: All the rooms are spectacular, we chose a garden pool room as we didn't want to walk up and down...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Di B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas

Property: Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas
Address: 5/5 Moo 5, Tong Nai Pan Noi Beach, Ko Pha Ngan 84280, Thailand (Formerly Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villa Resort & Spa)
Phone Number:
Location: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Ko Pha Ngan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Ko Pha Ngan
#1 Romantic Hotel in Ko Pha Ngan
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Ko Pha Ngan
#2 Family Hotel in Ko Pha Ngan
#2 Luxury Hotel in Ko Pha Ngan
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Ko Pha Ngan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas 5*
Number of rooms: 64
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tucked discreetly at the base of a lush mountain, amongst towering coconut palms and just steps from the powdery sands of Thong Nai Pan Noi beach, 64 private pool suites and villas in seven distinctive layouts face the turquoise sea. Comprising indoor and outdoor living spaces ranging from 100 to 250 square metres, each sanctuary reflects its own charming character. In natural harmony with the exotic surrounds, wood and stone features provide a striking backdrop to rich hand woven silks. Luxury comforts inside range from a “blissful dreams” mattress adorned with 500 thread count linens, to a 32 inch flat screen TV with home theatre entertainment, and outside to an indulgent private plunge pool.Guests keep in touch with complimentary WiFi throughout the resort, accompanied by an extensive library with PCs alongside international magazines and newspapers ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villa Resort And Spa
Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villa Hotel Koh Phangan
Rasananda Hotel Ko Phangan
Rasananda Resort Ko Phangan

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