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“Great Weekend Getaway!”

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Le Vimarn Cottages & Spa
Ranked #4 of 20 Hotels in Ko Samet
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 25, 2012

My husband and I are from the USA, but currently live just outside of Pattaya. My mother is here visiting and, at the last minute, we decided to book a trip to Koh Samet. I searched the internet and found Le Vimarn Cottages and Spa.

We booked the family villa (as we have a 1 year-old) and loved everything about our weekend getaway. The service was fantastic, beginning at the pier in Rayong, to the front desk, to the restaurant staff, and everywhere in between.

Special thanks to Payab Iamjuy. He is the Restaurant Manager for Ao Prao Resort and Le Vimarn. He was so kind to our entire family and made us feel very special. His incredible service throughout the weekend is the reason we will return to Samed Resorts!!!

Thank you!

Room Tip: We chose the family villa. It was very nice, but honestly, too much space for just a couple of days...
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  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank SarahJ4444
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 21, 2012

This was my third visit to the resort and my 5th to the island, my second visit saw a familiar pattern of deterioration of the environment with cheap dwellings and "services" springing up between the two main resorts owned by the same company. A proliferation of plastic pipes going straight into the sea, suspicious looking brown bits and a bay once pristine, turning into a wasteland.
I was fully expecting to see further deterioration but instead found that whilst still considerably less pristine then 6 years ago, it had in fact improved considerably in terms of water quality and it seems that for a change the management of the bay had finally turned their back on the tried and tested Thai Island development where the general philosophy seems to be to develop it with haste and without control.

Perhaps the correct time of the year helped ( dry season ) but the fish were back and swimming out to the headlands on either side of the bay, found quite a good variety of corals and reef fish and the water looked and felt pretty clean.

Getting there from central Bangkok takes @ 2.5 hrs on largely good roads with ferries leaving for the bay at 11.00 and 13.30hrs. 10-15 minutes on high speed launch will see you being dropped off at the bay where a farm trailor is backed into the water and you stand on this whilst it pulls you up the beach onto dry land.

The launch ride can be exciting as following the ancient Thai Bhuddist philosophy of boat drivers in Thailand, there are only two speeds to drive anything with an outboard motor, full throttle or stop and to never to let sea conditions interfere with this philosophy. Hence be prepared, for some bumps if it is choppy, however it is only a brief journey and my advice is to sit in the back if you are concerned.

The chalet's seem to have been reasonably well maintained, we did not take one with a spa as the pool and the beach are extremely close. The infinity pool seems well maintained and clean and the beach was cleaned of debris everyday. Unlike other resorts there are no beach vendors and the beach is essentially shared between 3 relatively small hotels.

One can catch a 4 wd ute into the main village from the hotel, where you sit in the back on bench seats and hang on as the road is extremely bumpy for approx 15 minutes. It will cost you 30 Baht per person but you have to wait until there are 10 people, alternatively he will take you for an individual trip for 400 Baht return and wait for you there. The village itself is catering for largely backpackers and budget travellers and the beach is quite crowded, there is a medical center and a 7/11and maybe some more life in the bars in the evening, but this is the 3rd and last time for me to visit as there is not much that attracts me to be bounced around for 30 minutes.

Le Vimarn has an Italian style restaurant with genuine wood fired Pizza Oven and the quality of food we found to be quite good, but not cheap. Unfortunately the choices are not so great as there is a cheaper Thai style restaurant halfway along the beach and the other Hotel Ao Prao at the other end, all within 10 minuets walk. We ate at Ao Prao the first night but were generally dissappointed and found there was not that great a difference in price with the Italian Restaurant at Le Vimarn where both the quality of food and ambiance was we felt better. Ao Prao does have a band playing but we chose to take drinks there and listen to the band rather than eat again.

The service level was quite good, as was the cleanliness, the rooms have a/c and do have mosquito repellent, however there is a mosquito net over the bed and this is probably prudent as difficult to prevent some stray ones invading the room. The lighting however is very subdued, making reading in bed quite difficult.

The general ambiance is peaceful as there is virtually no traffic and it is surrounded by jungle so you are seeing and hearing wildlife on your doorstep. Breakfast is served in a large indoor/outdoor Sala overlooking the beach and as much or as little as you want to make of it. Contrary to my expectations I will most likely return.

Room Tip: I think most rooms seem to be well located and all face the bay but if you have young kids getting o...
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  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Singapore_Sydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2012

Le Vimarn didn't really live up to its claim of being a "unique tropical Boutique Resort for an idyllic stay that will call you back again and again". Although our room was very nice, with a lovely big bathroom and very comfortable beds, the gardens were nicely-tended and the beach was beautiful with crystal clear water (the staff made some attempt to clear up any rubbish which got washed up), there were several things which we found irritating:

On our first day, our six-year old son stubbed his toe on a rock and needed a plaster. Having forgotten to bring any ourselves, I went to reception to ask for one, only to be told that they were finished - there were no more left! I couldn't believe that a supposedly four-star resort with two restaurants (therefore kitchens with knives etc.) didn't have any plasters! When pressed, the guy on reception went and spoke to a member of staff in the restaurant and returned with two plasters. But this whole situation made me realise how ill-equipped the resort would be should there be an accident requiring first-aid. When I subsequently looked in the in-room hotel directory, there was no mention of "Medical", "First Aid", "Doctor", "Nurse" or similar........ which is fine when everything is hunky dory, BUT if not...............

The restaurants were generally very expensive, with a mussel starter in the main "O' restaurant (Italian) costing the equivalent of about £10, and a glass of wine the equivalent of about £6. Even by European/Global standards, that is a lot! In addition, the "Buzz" restaurant had a rather unexciting desserts menu, with the highlight being Mango with Sticky Rice, which we tried to order on our first night only to be told they didn't have it. But there are already mangoes everywhere when you go shopping... so we tried again the next night - still didn't have it. I think this reflects the general complacency we felt at the resort. Staff tried to be friendly, but their grasp of English was not fantastic, nor their waiting-on skills. One morning at breakfast, we watched used plates pile up on our table before finally being cleared away. A further irritation was the use at every meal of paper napkins. Perhaps I am being a snob, but I would expect more of a resort that says it "attracts sophisticated and discriminating international guests year after year". They already have bed linen and towels (both bath and beach) to launder - surely a few linen napkins would not be too much of a financial or environmental strain? And on the point of sophistication, or lack of it, we ordered a Quattro Stagioni pizza one night and received a normal looking pizza with everything mixed up on the top. Obviously, somebody had seen Quattro Stagioni on another menu when they were doing their research, with the components listed underneath, but failed to realise the significance of the name! We ordered it thinking that our son would at least like one of the four options!

One final irritation was the traffic which passed along the track between the resort and the beach. As well as interrupting the otherwise peaceful, fume-free environment, a bigger issue is that of safety. Some of the bikes and vans were simply going too fast. With many families with young children as guests, it is only a matter of time before an accident happens. If vehicles really have to use this access track routinely through the day, PLEASE put in some speed-bumps!

So, all-in-all, we came away feeling a little disappointed. It wasn't a terrible holiday (we just spent 3 nights there), but it was let down by what were really details - details that would be fairly easy to put right. If you really want a luxury boutique resort in Thailand, go to the Pimalai Resort & Spa on Koh Lanta - absolutely amazing!

Room Tip: There are a lot of steps to some of the rooms, our's include (503), so if that might be an issue...
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  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank jxsbracey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 16, 2012

We booked into the Vimarn Cottages and Spa for 1 night planning to travel to the other side of the island for our remaining 3 nights. However, the accommodation was so delightful and the staff so helpful that we decided to stay put! It was one of the most relaxing places we have ever stayed. The cottage we stayed in was lovely, clean and spacious with a fantastic shower.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Stephanie R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 1, 2012

We have planned to stay 2 days at Koh Samet after a nice journey through Northern Thailand and Cambodia.

Once we arrived at the port for the transfer to Koh Samet we have been told to wait 2 hours for the next scheduled boat transfer. So please check the schedule carefully; otherwise you need to pay additional 2000 Baht for transfer with the speed boat. The transfer with the boat takes about 15-20 minutes.

The Vimarn Resort is located on the western, not so much lively side of Koh Samet. The arrival and check-in went well - and we where lead to our cottages. The cottages itself are located in the garden. The rooms where clean and contained everything we expected.

On recommendation of the receptionist we have ordered a table in the Seafood hotel at the end of our beach. (please know that most of the hotels and restaurants are owned by the same company) Once we arrived there we were "pushed" to order as soon as possible - this was annoying. So we went for the BBQ seafood, meat and buffet and fish.

We were very disappointed by the quality of the food and its presentation. From our expectation it is also hardly overpriced. (I went sick from it)

The breakfast buffet was okay - just the quality of the fruits could have been better. The staff itself, outside the supervisor are badly trained and have hard times to understand you - or to give recommendations. Also the well known friendliness seems somehow lost here.

In the afternoon there was a constant bad smell in the air - which comes from the canalization. That day we also had problems with the sink in the shower of our cottage.

We have stayed in various hotels prior Koh Samet (not all of them where high ranked hotels) but we haven't had the same feeling here. We all had the impression, that the golden days of Koh Samet are over, means also there are no more investments done on the location itself, and that the people there have just seen it - and are over with it.

That is why we have to say that we can not recommend this hotel/island and we will be definitely not be coming back here.

  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled with friends
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5  Thank Globetrotter_ch1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 28, 2012

We have visited Thailand a number of times and felt we were running out of new locations but Koh Samet sounded rather different. We spent a very relaxing Christmas 2011 at Le Vimarn Cottages and Spa and it was a total delight. Although very quiet you could take a taxi to see other parts of the island, an experience in itself, but why move when the scene across the bay was contstantly changing. We loved having dinner on the beach with the sound of the sea lapping just a few metres away. The service was friendly and welcoming and efficient and there was always someone around to bring you whatever you needed. My husband was delighted that he could even have his daily hot oatmeal for breakfast. It is the first time we have left a hotel and the staff came to wave goodbye. We very much look forward to a return visit. Four nights would probably be the optimum length of a stay.

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank maguern
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 24, 2012

Our family, two teenagers and two adults, celebrated the holidays on the beautiful resort Le Virman Cottage 2011-2012,. It was really wonderful. Fresh and clean, nice staff, good food, wonderful little beach. If you wanted more activity you could take a taxi to the other side of the island.The stuf vas very personal, everyone knew everyone and it was obvious that they were proud of their hotel.

  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank Erica S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Le Vimarn Cottages & Spa

Address: 40/11 Moo 4, Ko Samet 21160, Thailand
Phone Number:
Location: Thailand > Rayong Province > Ko Samet
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 Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Ko Samet
#3 Spa Hotel in Ko Samet
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Ko Samet
Price Range: $183 - $440 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Le Vimarn Cottages & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 31
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Le Vimarn Cottages & Spa is a unique tropical Boutique Resort for an idyllic stay that will call you back again and again. Clustered on the gentle slope of a hilly cove overlooking a quiet bay beach is your stylish retreat from the world. Supremely comfortable individual cottages all with balconies, some with your own outdoor spa that look down onto a peaceful curved bay of sparkling sea and fine sand. The cottage cluster centers around a superb infinity pool, a world class spa and a restaurant offering a most interesting and comprehensive menu.Le Vimarn attracts sophisticated and discriminating international guests year after year. A dream location that will last in your memory for a lifetime ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Le Vimarn Cottages And Spa
Le Vimarn Cottages Hotel Koh Samet
Le Vimarn Hotel
Le Vimarn Resort

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