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“Very good but...”

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Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort
Ranked #12 of 104 Hotels in Chaweng
Certificate of Excellence
London
Level 6 Contributor
106 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 102 helpful votes
“Very good but...”
Reviewed June 15, 2014

I went to Koh Samui with my wife for our honeymoon so a lot was riding on our stay in Anantara. This will be an honest review just like all my other ones. I am not one of those people who mark places down over small things so I'll mention why it got 4 rather than 5 stars from me personally.

Our first impressions weren't that great and this is the reason why, We got to the hotel around 1430 or 1500 hours on a typical hot day. We were met by staff who took our bags and left them at the front then walked to reception. While there we had to pass our details as you do and wait for whatever the lady was doing. We were told our room was ready so we were getting a bit frustrated that it was taking a while to do whatever it was.. but what annoyed us is that a couple opposite of us got welcome drinks and a towel to cool off, we did not get anything. At first we thought maybe they won an award or something and are being treated differently however we went past reception a few times in the 7 nights we stayed there and all new comers had a welcome drink.. not sure why we did not get one? I know it is just a drink but it's the principle and first impression that make a big difference. The second thing that annoyed and put us off straight away is that the lady dealing with us tells us that there is a room not being used, which is bigger and better than what we booked if we want to upgrade.. we felt a bit like we were put on a spot as if our room isn't good enough for a honeymoon, which she was aware of. We asked how much thinking it'd be maybe £200 max which we might have considered but it ended up being around the same price we paid for our room.. £900 or so extra. We said we can not afford it to which she asked me how much I can afford and that she can check with the manager.. i don't know about other people but we just spent a lot of money on our wedding so to make us feel like we aren't good enough for that room and can not afford it on our first 10 minutes there is not ideal. We already felt stressed.. to make matters worse after being dropped off in our room which was 8 min or so walk to the beach and breakfast every morning, our bags did not arrive till an hour later. We called twice for an update but nothing..

Now, everything that happened after those two weird hours we checked in was great. The room was pretty cool, a private pool.. can't really not like that, however the room had its faults. We only had two mosquito nets on each side of the bed but nothing to cover the other two sides and the top thus making it useless and we got eaten alive every day. The toilet/shower is open to the outside so whenever you need to use them you will most likely get bitten.. now i know it looks cool but not ideal in a place like that where there are so many insects. I've stayed in places more open to insects but we were provided with great protection and did not get bitten once unlike here.

These are the only bad things.. there are a lot of good. The breakfast buffet is amazing.. so many options you can not get bored. We never once felt sick from any of the food. The main pool is really nice and never was too packed... the lady on our check in said it was high season hence why we got a room so far away from everything but it did not seem like it to us.. it was never busy in the pool or breakfast area in the morning. Not according to what she said anyway. We did not use the pool bar because we thought the prices were a bit too much personally but I understand that it's what hotels do.. I don't agree with it but that's life. You can get a cola for 10 baht just opposite of the hotel from a shop.. while there it costs 8 times more.. same with cocktails and food in general. There is an awesome place called The Dusk where you can have an amazing tasty meal made from the heart by a nice family for the price of one meal in the hotel... I suggest doing that personally unless you like to waste money and show off.

The beach was also a massive disappointment. I read some of the bad reviews on the hotel and they hit it with a nail when they said it was dirty. I came across a lot of broken glass and bottles that could have caused bad damage to my foot. They were never cleaned the whole 7 nights I was there either.. if you walk further to the left from the hotel beach however and go further down.. you will come across a nice sandy beach but we are talking 20 min walk. The beach is surrounded by lots of rocks and an island so a lot of dirt and what not unfortunately. It is quiet though unlike the lower side of Chewang where people party and have sandy beaches.

The staff were very friendly and they even had a meeting with free cocktails and canapés, which was nice and unique. We met one of the managers and he was nice plus some of the staff. By then i started to forget about or crap intro on the first day and started to like the place more. They even set up screens for the world cup which was really sweet and nice of the staff at night time.. I am talking around 11pm to 5am. I might have said a lot of small bad things about the place but in general it is a great spot... 10 or less from the airport, 5 min from the busy side of chewang for 100 baht for two people on those van/buses. Go down and explore.. the food is cheap and tasty down there.. cocktails for as little as 80 baht or 100 baht on happy hours.

Overall, the incident when we first checked in nearly spoiled our honeymoon experience but they easily made up for it in many ways. I'd recommend it :)

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank norman_bates_82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerALS, General Manager at Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort, responded to this review, June 19, 2014
Dear norman_bates_82,

First and foremost a heartfelt Thank You for the compliments about your stay with us and as even though heartfelt apology for your check in experience. You are certainly correct that ALL our guests are usually receiving a welcome drink and a towel and I can only assume an honest oversight by my team that they forgot to provide this for you. I am glad to hear that we could recover from this mishap at a later stage.

I also appreciate your constructive feedback, which would have been great to hear when we met during the guest cocktail. It’s always nice to discuss this in person and over a glass of wine rather than in writing via a website. But I appreciate the opportunity to share some comments on your feedback as I believe some other guests might have similar point of views.

Not all Travel Agencies have access to all our room types and therefore are unable to offer our entire selection of rooms to the clients. Availability often changes as well and it could be that certain room types haven’t been available at time of booking but became available after a cancellation. Therefore we do offer frequently our arriving guests options, which the majority of them appreciate as it potentially enhances their vacation experience. My apology if this offer of selections has left you feeling uncomfortable.

I appreciate your comments regarding the distance between your room and the beach and we will take it as an opportunity to review our directional signage as it appears that we didn’t direct you straight to the beach if it took you 8min getting there. Alternatively we have buggy services available which will bring you quickly to any location within the resort you require.

The mosquito nets are slowly being phased out and being replaced with full size mosquito nets whenever possible.

I also appreciate your comments about your disagreement on our soft drink pricing and the opportunity to address it for a better understanding. It is certainly correct that there is a price difference between the Minimart across the street and our Pool Bar drink list. Nevertheless, it should be certainly taken into account that the surcharge on the price comes from different reasons. First of all, the price you compared us against is for a 250ml bottle while the Coke you are being served at the Pool Bar is 330ml. At our Pool Bar, a well trained, paid, English speaking staff member will come TO YOU to take your order and serve you the drink at your sunbed… with ice, a lemon and a smile. He will also come and remove the empty glass and can once you are finished… again with a smile. You will not have to get up and do the apparently 8-15min walk (one way) to the Minimart across the street in tropical heat. My team will do this for you. The ambience of a Minimart can hardly be compared to the ambience we created with a pool, sunbeds, beautiful plants and the previously mentioned staff member with a smile. All of those need to be paid somehow. I assume that running a Minimart requires much lower operating costs than our resort and I haven’t seen them yet inviting their customers for free drinks and canapés. At the end of the day, we are running a business that should return as well some profit for our company. Therefore we believe that our surcharge is rather well invested value for money and not a waste of it or show off.

The layout of our pool supports that it appears quiet, even though the resort might be running on high occupancies. I’m glad to see that you experienced it that way.

In addition I am glad to inform you that we not only clean our beach daily, but have just recently refilled it with about 1,000 qm of new sand in order to upgrade the beach experience. I assume that the beach conditions you have been referring to in your review are of parts of the beach that do not belong to our resort.

Once again, I appreciate your input and the opportunity to give some additional background information. I’m glad to see that you enjoyed your overall stay and will recommend us.



With kind regards

Lars Kerfin
General Manager
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Ayrshire, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed June 12, 2014

We stayed here for 8 nights in June 2014. The hotel is ideally located only a short distance from the airport and only a few minutes taxi to either Bophut, Fisherman's Village and Chaweng Beach.

The staff at Anantara Lawana are a credit to the hotel and made the holiday even better, they are extremely polite and helpful and went above and beyond to ensure we enjoyed our stay. The grounds are constantly being kept tidy by a busy workforce and the room was immaculate from the time we arrived to when we left with great personal touches left in our room (towel animals, messages on palm leaves etc) by the maids.

The breakfast buffet, snacks at the Pool Bar, meals at the Ocean Kiss restaurant were great although we did eat out most evenings in Chaweng and Bophut. We did dine at the Tree Tops restaurant on out final night, although costly it was amazing, the service was second to none as was the food, located in a unique setting it made the meal even more special and enjoyable.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Cr6i9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerALS, General Manager at Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort, responded to this review, June 19, 2014
Dear Cr6i9,

It will be my pleasure passing your compliments to my team. Thank you for sharing them here on TripAdvisor.

We are looking forward welcoming you back.

With kind regards

Lars Kerfin
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed June 11, 2014

Spent a week holidays at the Anantara and couldn't be happier! The staff is very friendly and always great you with a warm smile especially the team at breakfast!

The arrival experience is great, as soon as you step into the resort from the street you are immediately in a different world of lush vegetation and a relaxed atmosphere.

The standard rooms are spacious with a great balcony area and a tub that easily fits 2pax. The bed is very comfortable and they even have a mosquito net around so you don't get bitten.

Overall a great experience, and definitely recommend it for couples!

Room Tip: If you are not leaving the resort choose rooms closer to the pool and breakfast area.
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank FilipaCdeSousa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerALS, General Manager at Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort, responded to this review, June 19, 2014
Dear FilipaCdeSousa,

Thank you very much for the compliments. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed a relaxing week and will do our best to achieve a perfect score next time.

With kind regards

Lars Kerfin
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Level 4 Contributor
49 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed June 10, 2014

We stayed here in June 14 for 3 days and had a wonderful time. The hotel is conveniently located close to chaweng but yet has a quiet and exclusive feel to it. The beach is near private and though the sea is not very inviting the views are terrific. The rooms are well appointed with a cluster of rooms having their own pool. Most importantly the staff are extremely hospitable and warm. They are ever willing to fulfil and satisfy all request. The food is to die for!! Executive Chef Matthias and his team did a fantastic job of making this trip one to remember for the great food. One evening their was a Huge thunder shower and the entire outdoor party set up was drenched. The staff reorganised everything in a really efficient and expeditious manner.

Room Tip: The 100 series have a great view
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank jt05
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerALS, General Manager at Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort, responded to this review, June 13, 2014
Dear jt05,

Thank you for the very positive feedback and for taking the time sharing it on TripAdvisor. As you have been a member of a bigger celebration group we especially appreciate your compliments for the efforts the team put into moving your event around upon the unexpected storm.

Looking forward having you back to Koh Samui soon.

With kind regards

Lars Kerfin
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Preston, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed June 9, 2014

We have just returned a couple of days ago and had a great experience from the staff particularly who couldnt do enough for you . Id just like to mention Mee ,Orn and Tai who we got on really well with . The hotel is spotless with the gardens being tended all the time by the happy staff .As has been said before our only complaints was the price of the drinks round the pool which made it difficult to enjoy the day fully and maybe losing the social side because not a lot used the bar. I would like to thank the hotel for giving us a free upgrade on arrival to the plunge pool room which was a unique experience and the complimentary meal which we took on our last night was a great memory of our stay at Anantara .

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank illoyd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerALS, General Manager at Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort, responded to this review, June 13, 2014
Dear illoyd,

Glad to hear that you enjoyed your recent stay so much and we promise on keeping working hard towards the perfection.

I will certainly pass on your compliments to the staff members you pointed out and appreciate that you made the effort mentioning them here.

Great to hear that you enjoyed the many complimentary perks throughout your stay (which are substituted by our beverage prices apparently).

Looking forward having you back one day.

With kind regards

Lars Kerfin
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed June 6, 2014

I had never ever felt so relaxed at a resort before. The place gives you a certain sense of quiet tranquility with its lush landscape and surreal surroundings, We upgraded to a pool access villa from the deluxe room, and did not regret it. The ability to just chill and do nothing whether its by the main pool or at our own pool (shared with four other villas) was great bonus.The rooms were spacious and clean. Staff were friendly and helpful and prompt in their service. Breakfast spread was excellent.

Just a few minor observations. The beach was a disappointment. The tide came in only around early afternoon at its hottest. But it could be due to wrong season. We were told best time to visit would be Dec/Jan. It was also very hot weather when we were there. We got natural 'sauna' just sitting by the pool, besides getting a tan (in spite of using SPF 50+ sunblock).Pity the female front office staff in their long black skirts!

And there were mosquitoes aplenty. Especially in the walk-in wardrobe/bath areas. We need mosquito coils - which helped a lot.

Location wise, it is accessible to restaurants and the Central Festival mall by cab, within 10-15 mins, where there are also massage and foot reflexology parlors, most of them look clean.

Overall, nice resort and a great place to chill for friends, lovers or families.

Room Tip: Choose the pool access villas and bring mosquito repellent.
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Audr33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerALS, General Manager at Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort, responded to this review, June 13, 2014
Dear member3333,

Thank you very much for the very positive feedback about your stay.

I’m glad being able to share with you that as we speak we are performing a beach beautification which will improve the beach significantly even during the low tide dry season you experienced.

My team and I are looking forward sharing our new and improved beachside with you upon your next visit.

With kind regards

Lars Kerfin
General Manager
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Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed June 5, 2014 via mobile

We choose this hotel as part of our 25th anniversary treat .from the moment we entered the hotel we found the staff exceptional nothing to much trouble we were shown to our room which was the delux room bottom end room but wow not disappointed at all it was very spacious ten minutes after being shown room knock at door and three staff carrying bootle champagne flowers and cake for our anniversary lovely touch thank you .my one and only criticism of the hotel was the prices at pool bar for water and beer way ott think they should consider changing a fair price for the water after all you get at least four bottles in room free each day but that lije I say only criticism of fantastic vakue for money hotel

Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank leonard e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerALS, General Manager at Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort, responded to this review, June 6, 2014
Dear leonard e,

Congratulations once again on your Wedding Anniversary and thank you for choosing us as part of your vacation.

Great to hear that you enjoyed your stay and had a memorable time.

Our pricing around the pool is actually in line with other hotels in the same destination and class. As you might have noticed, we do provide quite a range of complimentary items around the pool, from water over fruit kebabs and even sun oil which is partly factored into the pricing. We also believe that Khun Santi and his team deserve being compensated above average for their efforts in providing exceptional customer service.

We would appreciate if we don’t have to wait another 25 years to welcome you back and have to possibility of inviting you for a free drink around the pool.

With kind regards

Lars Kerfin
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort

Property: Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort
Address: 92 / 1 Moo 2, North Chaweng Beach, Chaweng, Bophut, Ko Samui 84320, Thailand (Formerly Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort and Spa)
Phone Number:
Location: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Ko Samui > Bophut > Chaweng
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 Business Hotel in Chaweng
#7 Romantic Hotel in Chaweng
#9 Luxury Hotel in Chaweng
#9 Spa Hotel in Chaweng
#12 On the Beach Hotel in Chaweng
#14 Family Hotel in Chaweng
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 122
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled on the quiet, pristine northern end of Chaweng Beach, Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort & Spa offers peerless luxury Koh Samui accommodation just steps away from the ocean. Watch the sun rise over Samui’s palm forested coastline. Recline in rooms and suites inspired by the island’s original Chinese merchant settlers. Experience the perfect romantic dinner for two in a setting of your choice, accompanied by the freshest international cuisine.With room sizes starting at 61 square metres, Anantara Lawana Resort & Spa provides leading island resort accommodation. From the luxuriously appointed rooms and spacious Koh Samui pool villas to the resort’s communal facilities and restaurants, each guest is treated to the finest in services and amenities. Take a dip in the beachside infinity edge pool, dine in our treehouse restaurant overlooking the bay, or keep in touch with friends back home thanks to free Wi-Fi throughout the resort.While Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort & Spa’s location is quiet and tranquil, the buzz and excitement of Chaweng Beach lie just around the corner, with an array of international restaurants and local shops to take care of your every need. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Anantara Lawana Hotel Chaweng
Lawana Hotel Bophut
Lawana Resort Bophut
Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort Ko Samui/Chaweng, Thailand

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