You want to know the best place to stay in Koh Samui? Good, because I’ve made a list of my favorites. Samui is a very diverse island and caters for all different clientele groups, such as families, honeymooners, yogis, wellness people, and young adults. Even though Koh Phangan is my second home and I completely recommend for you to check it out, I also love Koh Samui, Phangan’s sophisticated big sister.
For a complete list of Koh Samui attractions, read my article on the 15 Awesome Things To Do In Koh Samui (including tips for renting a motorbike). Anyway, enough about that, here are the best Koh Samui hotels!
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Best B&B – Banyan House Samui Bed & Breakfast (Chaweng North)
Banyan House is a cute little B&B close to the airport. It doesn’t have shops or restaurants close by, nonetheless, it’s not far from action either. The owners live on the premises so you are definitely in good hands. They only have 7 rooms so it feels tranquil and private, even homely. The garden is most wonderful and I enjoyed sitting there, just enjoying the green grass and beautiful trees. ! It’s like a little oasis really where you will feel protected and looked after. Then there is the cute glasshouse cafe if you fancy some drinks or snack under the trees.
The room is cozy and clean, nothing too fancy but definitely enough to give you a comfortable stay. The breakfast set was quite basic as I’m a vegetarian but it was ok for a few days. I’d definitely recommend this cute this place!
Best Family Hotel – Ibis Bophut (Bophut)
Ibis Bophut, as Ibis in general, is known for its affordable, good value for money rooms. I have visited a few of their hotels in recent years all around Thailand. The rooms are rather small, all looking the same inside and the decor is rather bland. However, on the other side, the rooms are always very clean, nice and simplistic.
A bonus is that many Ibis hotels are dog-friendly and this is one of the reasons why I and Chase, my Thai mix dog have used Ibises. Ibis Riverside in Bangkok is one of the best value for money dog-friendly hotels in Bangkok. Chase wasn’t with me while I stayed here this time though. The garden is quite vast so it would be handy if you are traveling with your four-legged friend.
What’s more, the breakfast buffet at Ibis is always very good. They have multiple dishes, Thai food, Western food, fresh fruits and my special favorite, cakes, pastries and so on for dessert. Another thing where the Ibis has done a good job is the pool area. In my opinion, the garden and the swimming pool have always been well manicured and clean. There are quite a few restaurants, cafes and bars close by and in addition, you can also find the funky Fisherman’s Village restaurants about 20 minutes’ walk away.
Best Affordable Luxury – Kala Samui (Chaweng Noi)
The Kala Samui is a romantic getaway in southern Chaweng. They have a plethora of rooms to choose from, ranging from comfortable and stylish rooms with a balcony to bigger ones with their own small swimming pools. I love the Thai-inspired interior; dark wood and perhaps a slightly rustic feeling. On the downside, I feel that they are starting to become a bit outdated and could use some refurbishing in a couple of years’ time.
The infinity pool and the pool area are beautiful. The pool is not huge but big enough. There is another sun deck, a much bigger one which is used for functions also. In my opinion, it is perfectly suitable for a yoga session and a meditation moment. There isn’t a more serene place for some mindfulness than a deck with a sea view. For a complete review of the hotel by yours truly, click here.
Best Party Hotel – The Ark Bar (Chaweng)
The Ark Bar is a big hotel with a superb location, by the beach and right in the heart of Chaweng which is the main shopping area/city center. The airport is not far either and the hotel offers free airport shuttle one way when you book a room.
This hotel is a crowd-pleaser for young people who want to hear some upbeat tunes and enjoy the sun with a mojito in their hands. They have pool and beach parties here lasting until 2am all the time so join the fun! The rooms are quite basic but they all have balconies. For those wanting some quietude, this most likely isn’t your best bet though.
Best Chick Party Hotel – Nikki Beach (Lipa Noi)
Nikki Beach is a bit out of the way and far from the major tourist attractions, on the West coast of the island. Then again, the older center and port hub, Nathon is not so far from here (5km or 3 miles). Nathon is a more traditional Thai town though it has some shops for tourists too. Furthermore, the good thing is that it’s a bit cheaper compared to the more touristy and upscale Chaweng.
Anyway, Nikki Beach is a stylish hotel complex that has cool house music you can listen to while chilling at the fab pool with a Mai Tai in hand. They also hold extravagant parties here with world-famous dj:s rostering regularly. The downside is, of course, that for some the music might be too loud and this location is secluded from other actions around Ko Samui. Rooms are spacious and comfortable as you might expect from the Nikki Beach hotels. Apparently, the Sunday Brunch is legendary, too.
Looking for some activities but prefer to do it hassle-free? Join one of the organized trips or experiences and maximize your time on the location. Below are just a few examples that are available:
Best Backpacker Hostel – KoHabitat (Bophut)
KoHabitat hostel around Bophut, is conveniently located close to all the Fisherman’s Village activities and it has received raving reviews from its customers! Guests have been very thankful for the warm service and hospitality from the staff and the owner.
Like the name suggests, this place is also a co-working place and the free wifi has been rated 5/5! The beds are clean, spacious and come with a curtain to give you some privacy. All the rooms come with free coffee/tea and there is a communal kitchen. In addition, there are other useful facilities such as free lockers, washing machine and a cool hangout place for socializing. I’m definitely checking this out on my next visit!
Best Wellness Hotel – Absolute Sanctuary (Choeng Mon)
Absolute Sanctuary has gotten very nice reviews yet I haven’t been there so far myself. It’s situated in Choeng Mon which many rank as the best beach on Koh Samui. As the name says, they are a wellness hotel. There is a variety of different fitness classes, such as yoga, cycling, and Pilates to choose from but many come here for a complete detox program.
You could concentrate for instance on detox, yoga, weight management, a lifestyle change or fitness to enhance your well-being. Some programs include nutritious and healthy meals or juices, depending on your chosen program, and different treatments, such as massages and infrared sauna (which I by the way love).
The location is handy, close to the airport but on the downside, some of the guests have said that the rooms would benefit from a refurbishment and that the wifi in the room is not the best. Regardless, most visitors have been very satisfied with this hotel in general and said they have left Absolute Sanctuary truly rejuvenated.
Best Yoga Retreat – Vikasa Yoga Retreat (Chaweng Noi)
It was my intention to visit Vikasa on my last Ko Samui trip but I ran out of time. Gutted! It looks absolutely fabulous if I may say so. They have different programs here: you could do a yoga teacher training, yoga retreat, detox holiday or just attend the classes. Vikasa is actually pretty famous by world standards so many of the world’s best yoga teachers have their workshops here. I so wish I could afford one!
The place looks stunning! They have various room types for different budgets. None of them are particularly inexpensive, however, and I think this place falls under the category of a luxurious yoga and wellness retreat (starting from around 80e or 90$/night). The Life Cafe restaurant has superb views and your food is made by world-renown chefs, using only the finest and purest, whenever you can organic ingredients. Food is mainly vegetarian and vegan food, as you might expect from a yoga retreat. Overall, I think it might be the best yoga retreat in Thailand.
In general, Koh Phangan has been described as the yoga mecca of Thailand. I have written a thorough article about the best Koh Phangan yoga retreats. You can find it here.
Overall Best Place to Stay in Koh Samui – Sandalwood Luxury Villa Resort (Lamai)
These Koh Samui villas come with your own infinity pool and privacy could be one of the best places to enjoy a honeymoon or pamper yourself in a grown up’s trip. All the villas have spectacular vistas as they are situated on a fantastic hillside location and what’s more, location-wise, Sandalwood Luxury Villas are not too far from Chaweng or the airport either.
The villas are stylish and comfortable; the interior is Thai inspired with a modern twist. On the premises, you will also find a restaurant, communal swimming pool, and a spa.
Hopefully, you have found the best Koh Samui accommodation to suit your needs after reading this article. I have another one, similar to this, for Koh Phangan, in case you are wondering what are The Best Beaches of Koh Phangan.
If you are looking for some more inspiration for your Thailand trip, check out these posts below:
- The Best and the Divine Chocolate Brunch in Bangkok
- The Best and the Cutest Cafes to Visit in Bangkok
- Teacher’s Work in Thailand: Prepare for a Surprise
- How I Ended Up Doing Volunteer Work in Thailand, at Baan Eurphon
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