Once serving as an alternative to Thailand’s heavily touristed island of Phuket, Koh Samui’s beautiful white-sand beaches were long only visited by those in the know. This, of course, all changed with the opening of the island’s airport in 1989, when visitors began to flock to the once hidden gem. Over the past decade in particular, the island has welcomed an increasing number of luxury resorts, including big names like the Ritz-Carlton, Four Seasons and Belmond, further attracting discerning travellers in search of a tropical getaway.
But for those wishing to enjoy this lush paradise as it was 30 years ago, you’re in luck. This Saturday, Cape Fahn Hotel, a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World, will open on a private island just off the northeast coast of Koh Samui. With just 22 villas, the intimate property promises an unparalleled sense of privacy for the area.
The spacious accommodations, the smallest of which is a palatial 280-plus square metres, are staggered throughout the isle, shielded from each other by lush tropical gardens. Each boasts separate living areas as well as a sun deck complete with an eight-metre pool. Interiors are simple but chic, using plenty of natural wood and a largely white and taupe colour palette with the occasional blue accent to add a hint of colour. Vaulted ceilings make the rooms feel airy, while oversize windows allow for natural sunlight to flood in and offer up spectacular views of the Gulf of Thailand.
There’s no doubt you’ll want to soak up as much sun and sea air as possible from your private villa, but the three saltwater pools on the property — one of which is adults-only — shouldn’t be missed. You can also spend some time at the spa or partake in one of the many weekly activities, which range from yoga sessions and poolside movie nights to private yacht charters for day excursions to some of the gem-like islands in the surrounding area. Just don’t miss out on taking a stroll across the narrow strait that connects Fahn Island to Koh Samui during low tide — it’ll present some seriously good photo opportunities as well as access to the soft sands and glassy waters of Choeng Mon beach.
When you need a break from the sand and sun, cooking classes are offered at the resort if you’re looking to add a few new recipes to your repertoire. But for those who want to leave it to the pros, a mix of international and Thai fare is offered at the resort’s all-day dining establishment, Hue. And once you’re ready to switch things up, make a reservation at the Crest, the hotel’s fine-dining restaurant with a French-inspired menu. It’s the perfect spot to watch the sunset while savouring creative bites.