Issuu on Google+

At Last!

Samuiholiday.com, Siam Map’s latest initiative, answers everything a visitor to Samui would want to know

Mystical Escape

Vana Belle offers an oasis from busy Chaweng, inspired by Thai mythology

It’s all about Style Chandra Boutiques have been providing Samui shoppers with original garments for a decade


A Warm Welcome

Editor

Graeme Malley graeme@siammap.com

Graphic Designer Wunvilai Punnern - Meow

Photographer Ugrit Komlue - Grit

Feature Writer Rob De Wet

Feature Writer Rosanne Turner

Feature Writer Colleen Setchell

Webmaster

Seksak Kerdkanno - Klauy

Sales & Marketing Director Nipawan Chuaysagul - Ning 0 898 783 891

ning@siammap.com

Financial Director Kasper Bjørk kasper@siammap.com

Managing Director Henrik Bjørk henrik@siammap.com

Isn’t it odd how Samui’s expats refer to the ‘arrival of summer’, come July? But isn’t it always summer on Samui? It’s either hot and wet, or hot and dry. But those expats who hail from the northern hemisphere have it ingrained into their consciousness that July and August are the height of summer. And with the European school holidays being over these months, many return ‘home’ over this time. But for those not lucky enough to live on our beautiful island in the tropics, a much-needed annual holiday to paradise is welcomed with open, lily-white arms, as they flock to Samui and other sun-drenched locations to top up the tan.

Siam Map Company Ltd.

And a perfect way to mark the arrival of ‘summer’ is an introduction to Siam Map’s new brainchild – a website designed to showcase Samui and all it has to offer. You can read all about www.samuiholiday. com, the ‘Unofficial Travel Guide to Samui’, in this issue. Do browse the site when you have a moment, and we’d love to hear your feedback. But hey, we know you’ll love surfing the site as much as we loved creating it!

52/6 Samui Ring Road, Moo 3 Bo Phut, Koh Samui, 84320, Thailand Tel: 0 7742 2201 Fax: 0 7741 3523 E-mail: info@siammap.com www.siammap.com

Happy summer and happy browsing everyone!

All Rights Reserved

Reproduction or use of editorial or pictorial content in any manner is prohibited without written permision from Siam Map Company Ltd. While every precaution has been taken in the preparation of this publication, Siam Map Company Ltd. assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions. Neither is any liability for damages resulting from the use of the information contained herein. Siam Map Company Ltd. 2013

Distribution at Bangkok Airport courtesy of Bangkok Airways. Reservation Center: 1771 Samui Chaweng Office: 0 7760 1300 www.bangkokair.com

Please recycle or pass on to a friend.


CHILL DIFFERENT at Samui's original premier beach destination. Go free-flow with our signature Porn Star cocktail. Sundown Salute happy hour - 5-7pm daily.


CONTENTS

42

30

66

18 At Last!

66 Mystical Escape

24 Home Away From Home

72 Three, Two, One, Go!

Samuiholiday.com, Siam Map’s latest initiative, answers everything a visitor to Samui would want to know.

Many visitors to Samui choose to rent a villa for their holiday.

30 Star of Your Own Show

Your wedding day should be celebrated somewhere special, and New Star Beach Resort is that place.

36 Life Cycle

Keeping fit and seeing Samui on a bicycle needn’t be hazardous to your health!

42

It’s all About Style

Chandra Boutiques have been providing Samui shoppers with original garments for a decade.

48 The Sexiest Place on Earth

A look at why Nikki Beach chose to open its doors on Samui.

Vana Belle offers an oasis from busy Chaweng, inspired by Thai mythology.

If you’re an adrenaline junkie or after a bit of fun, head for Samui Go-Kart.

78 Moon Struck

The Full Moon Party has become one of the biggest events on the calendar of today’s young-at-heart.

84 More Than Meets the Eye

Discovering what’s behind the beautiful products at Nature Art Gallery.

90 Fly in Style

Whether it’s a short domestic flight or to an international destination, Bangkok Airways provides comfort and luxury.

62 Take a Walk on the Wild Side The latest trend to hit tropical holiday locations has arrived on Koh Tao.

Souvenirs are meant to remind us of our lovely holiday.

114 Buying Your Spot in Paradise Ensuring a safe investment with Panoramic Estate Company.

118 Meow’s Masterpieces

Meow’s handmade dolls are growing in popularity, and becoming sought after collectibles.

124 Stand Out From the Crowd Express your individuality with fashions from Psylo.

130 Laying it Back

Exploring the day and night delights of Big Buddha and Bangrak.

136 Hidden Gems 96 Splish Splash!

Samui has a couple of watery wonderlands to help keep the kids entertained.

56 Secondary School Education Stimulating young minds at SCL International School.

108 Remember When…

102 Relaxing and Partying i n One Holiday

Experiencing the best of two worlds with KC Resorts

Heading off the beaten track to see what The Siam Residence has to offer.

140 For the Love of Fashion

Personalised designs with a splash of colour at ‘Nicol B’.

148 Just Keep Walking…

The walking street market at Bophut’s Fisherman’s Village is a great way to taste local Samui life.


Mediterranean Mediterranean Cuisine Cuisine Amidst Amidst aa panoramic panoramic dreamscape dreamscape that that overlooks overlooks the the pristine pristine Crystal Crystal Bay, Bay, The The Cliff Cliff warmly warmly invites invites you you to to aa truly truly unforgettable unforgettable dining dining experience experience on on Koh Koh Samui. Samui.


www.thecliffsamui.com www.thecliffsamui.com

Choeng ChoengMon Mon

For For reservations reservations call call 077 077 448 448 508 508 Kitchen Kitchen open open 12:00 12:00 pm pm 10:00 10:00 pm pm -- Bar Bar open open 12:00 12:00 pm pm -- 2:00 2:00 am am

Tapas Tapas Bar Bar open open from from 12:00 12:00 pm pm -- 7:00 7:00 pm pm


Island Insight An overall guide to Samui’s towns, villages, beaches and hotspots.

Samui is an idyllic tropical paradise. A blend of traditional Thai hospitality and remote island life has joined hands with modern traveller expectations. But the towns, villages and interior are home to much more than just luxury resorts, restaurants, bars and retail shops. And whilst the main beaches are recognised as some of the best in the world, there are also secluded coves and magical hideaways around many corners – if you know where to look. And this quick guide will point you in the right direction.

Chaweng

Chaweng’s main beach is five kilometres in length and is lined with 5-star luxury resorts, boutique hotels, budget accommodation and great oceanfront restaurants. Behind the resorts, the Chaweng Beach Road is filled with restaurants, bars, spas, shops, street stalls and mobile food vendors. The lake sits to the rear of them and is a wonderful place for an early morning walk or jog. Near the southern end of the lake is the Soi Reggae entertainment area which also has two Muay Thai boxing stadiums, a temple guarded by carved monkeys and the huge Laem Din market complex. All manner of fresh produce is delivered here every day and the adjoining Dow Seafood market is a hive of activity from the early hours.

Lamai

Samui’s second most popular beach is around four kilometres long and the waters are perfect for swimming. There’s plenty of choice in accommodation, restaurants, bars, spas and health resorts. It also has a free Muay Thai event every Saturday and just off the Beach Road there’s a children’s water park. Wat Lamai is home to a cultural centre and museum that houses artifacts of Samui life before the advent of tourism. On Sundays there’s a ‘Walking Street’ along part of the Beach Road. And just outside of Lamai town on the ring-road is the famous Hin Ta-Hin Yai rock formations that has dozens of small local Thai restaurants around it. 12 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

Mae Nam

Nestled on the northern shores of the island, Mae Nam Beach stretches for several kilometres and overlooks the neighbouring island of Koh Pha-Ngan. High-end resorts and beach bungalows are dotted along the coast and many visitors love it for its peacefulness, soft golden sands and wonderful views. It has seven side streets that meander into the mountains: from Soi 1 you can follow the road over the mountains all the way to Lamai; Soi 4 has a ‘Walking Street’ every Thursday from mid-afternoon and also houses an ornate Chinese temple overlooking the beach and a large Buddhist temple set a few hundred metres back from the ringroad; Soi 5 has a tree-top canopy adventure theme park a few kilometres into the hills; there’s a buffalo fighting stadium a couple of hundred metres off the main road between Soi 5 and Soi 6; an early morning market is also in Soi 6; an evening market near to Soi 7; and the world-class Santiburi Golf Course in the hills above Soi 7. There’re dozens of bars and restaurants in Mae Nam, many of which are on side roads that lead down to the ocean. And at the western end of the beach the Lomprayah ferry takes passengers to the neighbouring islands several times a day.


NathoN

This is the island’s main administrative centre and the major ferry port for boats to and from the mainland. There’re some hotels but it’s more a town you would visit for an afternoon rather than stay in. Beside the terminal, there’s a local food market every day from mid-afternoon until late in the evening. Along what is known as the ‘middle road’ there’re old teak shop-houses and small businesses and a ‘Walking Street’ on Saturdays. And on the one-way road that goes through the town there’re dozens of shops and restaurants. Just off the main road there’s an ornate Chinese temple and garden in Soi 4. And near the far end there’s a renowned open-air duck restaurant – just follow the crowds around lunchtime.

Bo Phut

Bo Phut is best known for Fisherman’s Village. It’s a single narrow street that still has authentic wooden houses that Samui folk have lived in for generations. Parts of it have been modernized but it’s still awash with local foods, international restaurants, bars, shops and market stalls. It becomes one huge ‘Walking Street’ every Friday and you’ll find lots of local delicacies that few other restaurants have. Along with small hotels, there’re several 5-star luxury resorts at the far end and the beach curves around a large bay that also overlooks Koh Pha-Ngan. And small speedboats leave from the village pier heading for the Full Moon parties that take place there every month.

Big Buddha and Plai Laem

The magnificent golden Big Buddha statue that watches over the island from the north-east corner of Samui is one of the first things you see as you fly into Samui Airport. Built on a tiny island (Koh Farn) with a connecting causeway, it’s the most iconic image of the island. Many Thais pray at the temple so dressing and acting appropriately is expected when you enter the site. There’re some very good Thai restaurants and small stores around the temple. It also affords some beautiful views and along the road from it you’ll see another large Buddha image at Wat Plai Laem. Half-way along the road between the temples is a side road that cuts through to Choeng Mon. Down this road there’s access to some quiet secluded beaches, although some of them are through resorts.

Choeng Mon

Choeng Mon lies just 15 minutes or so from the middle of Chaweng but it seems like worlds away. There’s a small town that the road runs through with a couple of dozen restaurants and bars. The beach is a favourite for many locals as it’s quiet, picturesque and safe for swimming most of the year round. There’s every class of accommodation with some old-style beach bungalows at one end. And they all overlook the tiny deserted island of Koh Farn Noi which you can walk out to if the tide is low. www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 13


Big Buddha

Lipa Noi

Taling Ngam

Pang Ka

Bang Rak

In between Fisherman’s Village and Big Buddha is where you’ll find Bang Rak. There’s a few very good resorts and some private villas for rent along the beachfront that stretches around for several kilometres and has stunning views. Bars and restaurants line the main street and there’re two piers. The one nearest to Big Buddha has daily ferries to Koh Pha-Ngan, Koh Tao and on to the mainland port of Chumpon, from which a VIP bus takes passengers to Hua Hin and on to Bangkok. Start to finish, it’s a 12-hour journey with about half of it on the boat. Just beside the ferry terminal in Bang Rak is one of the busiest fish markets on the island. Local fishermen drop their catches here and the place is bustling with people all day long. At the other end of town there’s a short-cut into Chaweng on a road called Soi Bond Kai (which the locals refer to as the ‘Ghost Road’).

Taling Ngam and Lipa Noi

The south-west part of the island is known as the ‘Virgin Coast’. It’s largely unspoiled with lots of secluded bays, although most of the shoreline tends to be rocky. The west coast overlooks the famous ‘five islands’ and some of the closer islands of the Angthong National Marine Park (which is a perfect getaway for a day’s boat trip excursion). In this part of the island there’re some hotels, private villas for rent, up-market and local restaurants and several temples of note, including two that house a mummified monk. A second car ferry terminal is located in Lipa Noi and, like the one in Nathon, boats to and from Donsak on the mainland arrive and depart every hour from 5:00 am until 6:00 pm (check for details). And inland on the island’s main ring-road there’re several large waterfall sites and a safari park with elephant trekking, animal shows and adventure tours. Further along, next to the Ford and Mazda dealers is a new Butterfly and Insect Kingdom Park. 14 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

Hua Thanon

This predominately muslim village is home to the descendants of some of the island’s earliest settlers. There’s still a thriving fishing fleet and fish market and a natural coastline that’s survived the ravages of time. Just after the village (coming from Lamai) you can turn off the ring-road to the left and signs will direct you to the nearby Tiger Zoo, Aquarium and Sea-life Show, the Butterfly Farm, the Snake Farm and the local Rum Distillery. There’re also dozens of little side roads that lead down to quiet beaches and out of the way local restaurants.

The Interior

Samui predominately consists of hills, mountains and coconut plantations. And few visitors make the time to appreciate its hidden beauty. One way to do so is to take the turning into Mae Nam Soi 1. A new road has recently been constructed that goes over the mountains all the way to Lamai. The drive is only about 20-25 minutes over 15 kilometres with a couple of stopping off areas that offer fabulous views. Another way to really get the full picture of Samui is from Tar Nim’s Magic Garden at the top of one of the island’s highest peaks. Built during a 25-year period by a local farmer the stone statues in the garden were sculpted by hand and sit over 2,000 feet above the beaches below. It’s a part of Samui that shouldn’t be missed.


AT LAST!

Samuiholiday.com, Siam Map’s latest initiative, answers everything a visitor to Samui would want to know. “Where should we go on holiday this year, dear?” “Well, we could always go back to Mallorca; we know it so well.” “I want to try somewhere different this year. But it’s so frustrating, there’s just so much choice! My friend Mary went to Samui in Thailand, and said it was fantastic. What do you think?” “Whatever you want dear. You do the research and just book it. Now leave me to read the paper in peace.” Sound familiar? Well she’s right. Researching a new place is hard work. Not for lack of information on the internet, but rather a case of it being so disorganised and ‘all over the place’. Sifting through endless websites, you’ll find weather details on one site, what to do and what to avoid on another, and others are crammed so full of advertising, that it’s hard to find the actual information.

18 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 19


SAMUIHOLIDAY

O F F I C I A L T R AV E L G U I D E T O S A M U I

SAMUIHOLIDAY

Often, there are great websites out there, but they don’t always rank well with the search engines. Usually on page one of a Google search you’ll come up with accommodation booking sites, as well as the country’s official website. Now as great as a site like Agoda is for making accommodation reservations, the problem is that you first need comprehensive information about the place to decide if you actually want to go there. You need to picture yourself there, enjoying your hard-earned vacation time. And that brings us to samuiholiday.com, brainchild of Siam Map’s Managing Director, Henrik Bjørk, who says, “The concept of the site is to let the potential tourist know what Samui has to offer in a positive and relaxed way. The website shows them pictures of our beautiful island and gives them comprehensive, relevant and up-to-date information regarding all aspects of a short or long-term stay.” But shouldn’t the country’s official website, run by TAT (Tourism Association of Thailand) with their ‘Amazing Thailand’ slogan, be fulfilling this role?

N I G H T L I F E & E N T E R TA I N M E N T

20 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

A C C O M M O D AT I

LEARNING NEW SKILLS ON SAMUI

Well, one would think so. But in reality, if you open the TAT website, Samui is well hidden, with very little information (most of which is irrelevant or outdated). Feeling that Samui has not been done justice and isn’t well enough represented officially, Siam Map has taken it upon itself to create samuiholiday.com to act as the ‘unofficial travel guide to Samui’ – which is, quite fittingly, the website’s by-line. With 370 pages of content, and around 40 new stories and reviews added each month, there’s no doubt that the website is comprehensive. Upon entering samuiholiday.com, the user shouldn’t have a reason to leave the website to look for information elsewhere – until such a time that they are ready to book their flights and accommodation. The website is not only bold, attractive and eye-catching, but also easy to navigate, and packed with quality pictures making browsing easy – even for those too lazy to read!

DINING ON SAMUI


O N

SAMUIHOLIDAY

SAMUIHOLIDAY

LIVING ON SAMUI

S PA G U I D E

The mood of samuiholiday.com is upbeat and light-hearted. Wearing ‘rosetinted glasses’, it focuses on the island’s positives, but also takes the time to warn readers of potential pitfalls, and advises what to do in the event of a mishap. Designed to entice visitors to the island, it’s the perfect research tool, and can be used for on-going research once here when looking to things to do and places to eat. You won’t find endless advertising on samuiholiday.com. What you will find are interesting articles, some written solely for the website, and others pulled from the company’s sister products: Samui Holiday Magazine, Samui Wining & Dining, Samui Dining Guide and Samui Spa Guide. With Siam Map’s dedicated team of full-time writers, photographers, editors and designers, users are guaranteed a quality product packed with current information. Great features include two interactive pages, the first being the ‘comments’ page where readers can comment on their island experiences, making suggestions to others. This is the place to add info on anything you may have found not listed that is worth a mention, and if applicable, the

H E A LT H , S A F E T Y A N D N O - N O ’ S

writers and web team will incorporate it into the site. The second tool is a ‘community calendar’, where local businesses and organisations can add upcoming events for both the local and tourist market. Website guru, Kim Carter, has spent extensive time developing and optimising the site and, with its strong content, there’s no doubt that samuiholiday.com will rank top of the searches for Samui by the end of 2013. We could talk you through it all here, but the best would be to put down the magazine, grab a cup of coffee and take some time browsing the website. And if you have an opinion you’d like to share, feel free to add it to the comments page. Happy surfing!

Rosanne Turner

SPORTS AND ACTIVITIES

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 21


The Place! The People! The Party! …amazing place for extraordinary people…

KC Beach Club & Pool Villas – new stylish & modern hotel with 42 luxury rooms & pool villas. Great entertainment program in the Beach Club. Open bar & à la carte dining.

Follow us on

: KC Beach Club & Pool Villas Koh Samui


KC Beach Club & Pool Villas Koh Samui on Chaweng Beach Every Saturday & Sunday Pool Party from 12 – 6 pm Weekend Lunch Buffet from 1-5 pm In House DJ Club Music

www.kcbeachclub.com rsvn@kcbeachclubsamui.com Tel: +66 (0) 77 915 155


24 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


HOME AWAY FROM HOME

Many visitors to Samui choose to rent a villa for their holiday.

Putting up your feet and having your every whim taken care of, not having to do the dishes, not having to do laundry and not having to cook. These are some of the aspects of a holiday that many people look forward to. So mention renting a villa instead of a pampered hotel stay, and arms fly into the air with shocked exclamations of “No way! I want to enjoy my holiday! Renting a villa would be just like staying at home – no thank you very much!” Well, if this is the case, why are more and more visitors to Samui choosing villa rental over hotel stays? Well, there are pros and cons to both options, taking not only price (and hidden costs) into account, but other aspects too, such as privacy, freedom, space and facilities. For stays of only a few days, resorts are probably still the better option, but for longer stays, there are several benefits to choosing a villa, depending on your needs as well as the number in your party. Villas (and bungalows) are available from as little as 10,000 baht per month for a simple fan-cooled bungalow, possibly with aircon, to high-end properties going for more than US$2,000 per day! Topping the list of pros of renting a villa includes the freedom it offers regarding meals. If you hire a small bungalow, there’s usually a kitchenette of sorts and if you feel up to it, you can prepare some meals yourself. This is a great way to experience a little local culture, as a visit to the fresh market can be an eye-opener. For anyone with a very restrictive diet, having your own kitchen is very handy, especially when a language barrier can pose a problem trying to explain special requirements. Obviously, you can also eat at local restaurants, but you have that choice with a hotel stay too.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 25


Mid-range to luxury villas often include a chef. Now as fancy as that sounds, it’s quite the norm on Samui, and sometimes even villas that are relatively cheap (10,000 baht per day) often include a chef, or one can be arranged at a nominal fee. If the villa has three bedrooms, sleeping six, that’s 3,333 baht per couple per day, the same as at a mid-range hotel. Where the villa works out cheaper in this case, is that the staff will do grocery shopping for you. So a soft drink for instance, will now cost you 15 baht, whereas at the hotel, probably 80 baht. The same applies for meals. The shopping and cooking will be done for you, and you’ll only be charged for the cost of the ingredients, plus ten to 20% usually, as the chef’s services are included in the rental rate. Eating out can often work out pricey, so for a group of friends or family, this is one area where the saving comes in. Other than the cheap ‘long stay’ bungalows, most villas will offer the same services as a hotel such as booking trips on your behalf, arranging laundry to be done, organising a car rental, and daily cleaning is usually included too. Luxury villas have staff permanently on site, so there’s no compromise on service or safety compared to a hotel. More upmarket villas often provide all the facilities that a hotel would offer, including a gym, and even a home cinema. Families with young children may prefer the villa option, as they don’t have to worry about keeping the little tykes quiet for other guests. Or the opposite applies too, with other hotel guests partying too loudly, keeping kids awake. And if you want to throw a party yourself, a villa is a better bet as you can make more noise, the drinks will be cheaper and you’ll have the place to yourself. Note however that you’ll need to organise this with the villa management in advance, and there may be a surcharge for entertaining outside guests on a larger scale. Pros to hotels are that they are often included in package deals, and sometimes work out cheaper with flights, transfers and accommodation all-inclusive. Also,

26 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

villas often ask for a refundable breakages deposit. Although you get this back should you not cause any damages, it still affects the cash flow. If you arrive on Samui and are after a cheap bungalow, for say 10-12,000 baht per month, your best bet is to book a hotel room for your first night or two, then rent a scooter and drive around the areas you would like to stay in. You’ll see notices up all over with ‘House for Rent’. Although they sometimes prefer long stays, many will rent out for a week at a time. For 10,000 baht per month, this works out to less than 350 baht per day, cheaper than most backpackers pay, but with a lot more space to hang your hammock! Remember to negotiate. Often little bungalow resorts will offer substantial discounts for longer stays of two weeks or more. Look out for hidden costs – does the rate include utilities? If not, what is the unit price for electricity, and is Wi-Fi included? More upmarket villas will usually include the utilities in the daily rate. There are several excellent villa rental companies on Samui, and you can browse their websites before booking. A good agent will be able to ascertain your needs and find the perfect villa for your group. Their website will not only have a gallery of professional photos, but also a detailed description of the villa and its facilities, and often guest reviews too, in much the same way that a hotel’s website provides this information. There’s no shortage of accommodation on Samui, from frugal to fancy, so you can choose whatever best suits your needs – and your budget. Either way, hotel, resort or villa - with friendly locals, great food, ideal beaches and plenty to see and do, you’re sure to enjoy your stay.

Rosanne Turner


Smile.....you are at new star

Experience your once-in-a-life-time event right on the beach of Chaweng Noi from the white-orchid entrance down to the sandy aisle. Cherish the extravagant beauty of the blue water complimenting the crimson sky. Saying “I do� with the witness of the Gulf of Siam where only the horizon is the boundary of love.

83 Moo 3 T. Bophut, Chaweng Noi Beach Koh Samui 84320 Thailand Tel: (66) 77 422407, (66) 77 414500-6 Fax (66) 77 422 325 www.weddinginkohsamui.com www.newstarresort.com info@newstarresort.com


STAR OF YOUR OWN SHOW Your wedding day should be celebrated somewhere special, and New Star Beach Resort is that place.

Most women plan their dream wedding from a young age, long before they meet their future husband. In fact, he’s often the last piece to fit the puzzle. The dress usually takes centre stage of this fantasy, and changes over the years as her fashion tastes evolve. But, her dream location seldom changes. For many a bride, this dream location is a beach wedding. Samui has fast earned a reputation as a prime beach wedding location. And with its postcard-perfect views and almost year-round good weather, it’s easy to see why. There’s fierce competition when it comes to wedding venues on the island. But one venue, New Star Beach Resort, has consistently pleased brides – that’s no mean feat, as anyone who’s had to deal with a bride will understand. New Star’s winning formula involves not only a prime beachfront location, but also food and service to match. New Star has its own in-house wedding planner who’ll custom-design your dream wedding right down to the finest details, the process starting long distance and continuing when the bridal couple arrive on the island. Having an experienced planner on hand takes all the stress out of your special day, leaving the bride and groom to unwind at the resort’s spa, or enjoy spending time with friends and loved ones who’ve travelled far to enjoy the occasion. New Star understands that every bride’s dream wedding is unique, and will assist in turning these dreams into a reality that reflects the couple’s personalities, as well as their love for each other.

30 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

The ceremony takes place on the soft white sand of pristine Chaweng Noi Beach, as the bride takes her walk of honour from the white orchid entrance down a sandy aisle, flanked by the seated guests. Although New Star customises wedding packages, they offer three choices as a base to work from. The first of these is the ‘Barefoot Wedding Package’, a simple ceremony on the beach at sunset, perfect also for renewal of wedding vows. There’s the ‘Western Wedding Package’, a classic reading of the wedding vows at sunset, every bride’s dream. However, some bridal couples prefer an Asian twist to their wedding as they’ve chosen Samui as a wedding location. The ‘Thai Wedding Package’ involves a Thai monk blessing and ceremony, a special way to start a life together.


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 31


32 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Both the Western and Thai packages include a photographer, make-up and hairstylist for the bride, a one-hour couple’s massage at the resort’s Akiira Spa and a wedding reception signature book. The bride has the option to arrive in a flower-clad buggy to carry her to her prince charming, and the ceremony takes place on a podium under a flower arch, fairy tale style. In addition, the Thai package includes a traditional long drum parade, Buddhist monks to perform an additional ceremony and blessing, a Thai water ceremony and alms for the monks and temple donations. As well as the other flower arrangements, the bride and groom are offered traditional Thai-style neck garlands to complete the traditional effect. New Star Beach Resort’s location and layout makes it ideal for small and intimate weddings of up to 60 guests on the beach, with the resort boasting 200 metres of beach frontage. The reception takes place in the open-air restaurant area alongside the pool, overlooking the beach, with an option of either a set menu or buffet, and a choice of Western or Thai cuisine.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 33


As far as the guests are concerned, New Star’s accommodation caters for all, as there are different room types, from grand villas to more affordable rooms. Of course, as guests will most likely be staying for several days spanning the wedding celebrations, Chaweng Noi is ideally located – secluded from busy Chaweng proper, yet close enough to drive to the action when the need arises. So if you’re considering a Samui beach wedding, it’s well worth contacting New Star Beach Resort to plan your once-in-a-lifetime event. “True love stories never have endings” – Richard Bach, American author. Let your wedding be the first chapter in your lifelong romance novel.

Rosanne Turner ____________________________________ For reservations or further information, telephone 0 7741 4500–6. www.newstarresort.com 34 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


OYSTER SUNDAY BRUNCH NOON - 4 PM With it’s breathtaking views and unrivalled ambiance, RockPool is by far one of the most beautiful dining locations on Koh Samui. Resting on the rocks just two meters above the ocean, RockPool brings you the ultimate seaside dining experience. Sit back and enjoy a lazy Sunday afternoon brunch or award winning tapas from British Chef David Lloyd’s decadent a la carte menu, while listening to the waves gently lapping the rocks below. This is one of the absolute “must do” dining experiences on the island, and is open for beautiful breakfasts, gourmet lunches and romantic dinners.

RESERVATIONS: 077 234 500 FREE PICK UP SERVICE FROM YOUR HOTEL Located between Chaweng and Choeng Mon www.kandaresidences.com Location in Thai: ร�านอาหารร็อคพูล ต�้งอยู�ระหว�างหาดเฉวงและหาดเชิงมน


LIFE CYCLE Keeping fit and seeing Samui on a bicycle needn’t be hazardous to your health!

You’re here! You’ve been stacking it and counting it and now all the money you’ve been putting aside for another well-earned sunshine holiday has been deployed. You booked and you flew. You checked in. You recovered by the pool. Then you did some serious swimming and looked-up the whereabouts of the local gyms. You hired a scooter (they call them ‘motorbikes’ here) to go check it out, but you unintentionally discovered the local attitude to driving, too. Being blunt, Samui’s drivers are not the most considerate on the planet. And, although you were hoping to rent-out a bicycle for a week, you decided that discretion was the better part of valour and crossed it off your list. And that’s a shame. Yes, you’re quite right to be cautious. Many a carefree holiday-maker has been brought up short by a foray onto the roads of Samui. But in all truth this works both ways – some of those tourists you’ll see on motorbikes creeping along at the sides of the road have never even driven one before! But with a little bit of awareness and a modicum of keeping your wits about you, you’ll quickly discover that the whole adventure is actually quite super. You can take a bike out on Samui, see the sights and keep fit at the same time. But you need a few hints and tips, and also a good idea of where to go and what it involves.

36 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 37


If you’re not too familiar with Samui, the first thing is to get a copy of the Samui Guide Map, spread it out and take a good look at it. Google Maps and GPS on your iPad are all very well, but first you need to get a sense of layout and scale. Although Samui is only about 25 kilometres from side to side, there’s really just one main ring-road around the edge of island and, inside that, 85% of the landmass is mountainous and the roads can be shockingly steep in places. In actual fact Samui has some super routes for the ‘soft’ rider who’s dedicated but not fanatical. But it’s also perfect for committed sportsmen who seek the challenge of a widely-varied and demanding route. It’s a little-known or publicised fact (the Thais like to keep things to themselves, on the whole) but, every year, on Samui, there is a leg of the National MTB (mountain bike) championship which hundreds of Thai MT Bikers travel to for four days in order to compete against each other. There are quite a few people staying here full time who are dedicated cyclists. too. And, looking at the scene overall, this divides itself into three areas. First there are the health-conscious visitors who would like the benefits of exploring Samui on two wheels but under their own steam. Then there are the residents of Samui who, for the same reasons of health and fitness, spend a lot of time on a bicycle – usually simply travelling to where they need to go by using a bike. Then there are the serious riders, some of them at a nationally competitive level. These are the ones who view cycling as a way of life and it’s an integral part of their lifestyle. If you’re here just for a short time on a holiday visit then you’ll need to rent a bike. If you’re in one of the better resorts then you’ll probably find they have bikes you can use – Zazen Boutique Resort in Bophut and Six Senses Samui spring to mind straight away. But, failing that, there are two shops which specialise in bike maintenance and hire. In Chaweng there’s the Bicycle Café. Here there is a range of road-quality cycles available that are ideal for touring about locally. It’s owned by Khun Jom (who speaks excellent English) and you’ll find it on the Lake Road, not far from Bar Ice, and the uphill turning that leads to Q Bar.

‘Samui Bicycle Tours’ is in Lamai and here you’ll discover a range of well-built mountain bikes for the serious off-road cyclist. These are top-end bikes which can stand the punishment of the slopes of Samui, and you can go on your own or join in with the regular outings that the Italian owner, Joe, is well-known for organising. Samui’s serious cyclists tend mainly to be seen in the cooler hours just after dawn, before the roads get too busy. One of the truly dedicated here is Englishman Bryn Edwards – just how many people do you know who have pedalled to Malaysia to get a stamp on their visa? He’s been on the island for just over three years now, religiously clocks up hundreds of kilometres a week on and off-road, and has some pertinent observations about cycling on Samui. “The first thing a visitor needs to do here,” he grinned, “is to put the entire Western Highway Code in a bag and leave it in their room. You have to believe their are no rules, people drive any side of the road they want, don’t use indicators or mirrors and are not aware that there’s anything on the road apart from themselves. Get a bike or a helmet with mirrors and constantly check them. Use senses you don’t normally need to use – listen constantly for engine noises behind and concentrate on reading the road 20 to 30 metres in front. And also put a flashing light front and rear. If you stay alert it’s really quite alright, especially if you go off-road, too.”

In Australia and New Zealand, tipping is virtually non-existent and in Japan it’s just not done.

Another dedicated MTB rider is Ian Mills – some of you may remember him as the laid-back host of The Thirsty Moose in Maenam. He’s no longer on the island, but (other than the name of ‘The Moose’!) his legacy remains in the form of a website he created specially for off-road cyclists. This is quite superb and contains five routes of different grades, complete with detailed maps and advice and tips. I can’t go into details here but everything you’ll need to know can be found at www.keenfitness.com. Thanks, Ian, for your time and trouble and for sharing this with us all. All in all, Samui is a great place for cycling. Yes, you need to keep your wits about you, but that applies to all forms of transport. For some, cycling is a way of staying fit, but for others it’s a way of life. And to make the point I’ll leave the last words for Bryn Edwards. “If I had to choose between being castrated or losing my bike,” he chucked, “I’d say only one thing. Get the knife out!”

Rob De Wet 38 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


EMS

Lounge Restaurant K o h

S a m u i

Koh Samui's Premier Restaurant and Lounge Indulge in the succulent cocktails and provocative global fusion cuisine of the lavish and luxurious 9Gems Restaurant & Lounge as you experience a 360 degree view of Koh Samui.

“Miami Vice meets Buddha Bar.” CNNgo.com “Gastronomic delights were served with great panache, and it's no surprise that the cuisine was absolutely divine.” Betty Page, Mutiboko.co.uk “Without a doubt, it is Koh Samui's most precious gem.” Nicole Christine Valdes, Samui Lifestyle Featured in ELLE Decoration, the innovative design and incredibly chic ambience makes for an experience unlike any other.

Dress code: trendy or smart casual. Minimum age: 12+ (Screaming children will not be tolerated.) Opening Hours: Tuesday – Thursday: 16:00 – 24:00, Friday – Sunday: 16:00 – 02:00 (Kitchen Closes 23:00) (Monday Closed) August open every day Tel: 0 7725 6125 Mobile: 0 806 920 520


Be Sweet

Be Wild

Be 9Gems

www.9GEMSsamui.com


42 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


IT’S ALL ABOUT STYLE

Chandra Boutiques have been providing Samui shoppers with original garments for a decade. “Fashion fades. Only style remains the same.” – Coco Chanel. “The difference between style and fashion is quality.” – Giorgio Armani. Going by what these two industry legends proclaimed, it’s no wonder that Barak and Dana, owners and designers at Chandra, are on the right path to success, keeping a local clientele as well as island visitors happy with their original garments and accessories. The Chandra owners are free-thinkers, rejecting conformity. Their designs represent this mind-set, yet are elegant and stylish, and Barak and Dana prefer using natural fibres such as cotton, rayon and silk, ideal too for a hot climate. Now Chandra’s fashions are unique and not what you’ll find in your commonplace clothes store. Their designs carefully play with colours and prints, fabric and cut to create special pieces that flatter the female form. According to Dana, they’re expanding the line of menswear as they see the joy expressed by their male shoppers, having finally found a place to shop on the island. The range includes shirts, pants, vests, tees, and tie-pants in cotton and silk blends, allowing men to look great effortlessly. While most of the range leans towards a natural colour scheme, there are also a few funky prints for the more adventurous.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 43


You’ll find two Chandra Boutiques along Chaweng Beach Road. Chandra 1 is near Tropical Murphy’s opposite McDonalds, and the other, Chandra 2, near the entrance to Tops Supermarket. Why the two stores? Well each shop has its own signature. And you won’t find the same merchandise in both, so it’s definitely worth browsing the two. Currently, menswear is only stocked at Chandra 2. It’s only a five-minute walk between the two stores, so pop into both to get the full Chandra experience. Aside from clothing, Chandra also carries a range of accessories, to help complete your look. Choose from handbags, jewellery, scarves, belts, sandals and swimwear. Most garments in the stores are designed by Dana and Barak, but they also work with designers and manufacturers that they’ve sourced during years of travelling around Southeast Asia. Each piece has been carefully selected to create the look that tells the Chandra story. Recently, they’ve added a new line of women’s underwear. It’s pretty, it’s racy and it’s made to be seen. These lacy bras and bodysuits resemble bikinis in cut, even fastening at the back into a bow, so they’re perfect to wear under flimsy or low-slung garments. Choose from white, antique, coral, black and indigo in a range of sizes – they make an ideal gift for the special lady in your life.

44 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 45


Word of mouth has given Chandra a reputation as being Photographer: Barak Weiss - Chandra a leader on the Styling: Dana Cohen - Chandra island in providing Model: Pekki quality bikinis that Assistants: Bow & Som - Chandra are unique. South Hair & Make-Up: Olay - Victory Hair II American designers Location: Villa Akasha by Jonathan Levi were chosen by Chandra to feature as the boutiques’ swimwear ranges. The bikinis, crafted from carefully selected fabrics that allow for movement, are cut to ‘wow’. But what makes them stand out is the intricate detailing work, such as stitching and beading, as well as incorporating unusual materials. These little ‘works of art’ allow the wearer to release their inner goddess, so to speak. Most designs come in two cuts – the regular Western cut, and the more daring South American cut, which reveals a little more of the derriere, yet isn’t quite as risqué as a thong! Crew List & Credits

46 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

While many Western women complain about availability of sizes when shopping in Thailand, this is not the case at Chandra. Garments are cut for the Western form, yet small and extra-small are available too. Cuts are comfortable to wear – whether they’re softflowing or hugging curves. So if you’re in need of a little retail therapy and you’re after a purchase that’s a timeless classic, but also a unique piece, then a visit to either Chandra store (or better yet, both) is a sure-fire solution.

Rosanne Turner __________________________________

For further information, telephone 0 7742 2311 or 0 7796 0788. www.chandra-exotic.com


THE SEXIEST PLACE ON EARTH A look at why Nikki Beach chose to open its doors on Samui.

48 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Nikki Beach can now be experienced in 12 cities spanning eight different countries, with more locations already in the pipeline. (Plus ‘pop-up’ locations during the Cannes International Film Festival, the Toronto International Film Festival and the Sundance Film Festival.) Almost all of these venues are ‘day clubs’ with no accommodation. Except for one. And that’s here. The first-ever ‘resort-style’ Nikki Beach opened on Samui, over on the west coast at Lipa Noi, on the 25th of April 2009. And as such, it became a prototype put together with great care and attention to detail; a model upon which future resort-style Nikki’s would be built. And such was its success that there are now similar projects underway in Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Turkey and The Maldives. But why here? What is there about Samui that puts it in the same conceptual bracket as Cannes, Miami or Ibiza? Can we offer a lifestyle which appeals to the rich and famous? Is sleepy little Samui able to support a jetsetting community? Michael Sin is the Director of Guest Relations at Nikki Beach Koh Samui, and he came up with some pertinent insights into this. “Samui is anything but sleepy,” he responded. “Samui has become known for exactly what Nikki Beach represents worldwide: a sexy international crowd, amazing beaches, local culinary flair, world class resorts, fresh seafood, and much more. All of this paired with its beautiful scenery, vibrant colour, and warm culture at every turn makes Koh Samui the perfect fit for Nikki Beach!”

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 49


“There’s an energy about Samui you can’t find anywhere else in the world,” Michael continued. “It screams loosen your tie, let your hair down, kick off your shoes, dip your toes in the water, order a bottle of champagne, and dance. Samui reminds me of Neverland; you can’t help but relax and have fun because you know its remote location allows you to completely disconnect and truly enjoy a holiday.”

50 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


But Nikki Beach isn’t just another beach club. To get to grips with the inherent meaning of this you’ll need to realise that there are five elements woven together into the Nikki experience. Fashion is at the fore, and there’s the Nikki line of designer clothing on sale at all their outlets. This is cool and beach influenced, mostly in linen, with everything predominantly in white but with blazing primary accents – a theme, incidentally, which is shared by the décor of the 16 stand-alone bungalows. Music is another dominant force and essential to all the party events, with visiting international DJs or cool live sounds being the norm. And entertainment overall, including the key ingredients of movies and dining, round off the mix. At Nikki Samui, the latter is authored with flair by internationally renowned Executive Chef, Peter Montemayor. Wrapping this into one weekly package means that, as Michael Sin outlined, “. . . Wednesday’s Cinema on the Sands screens classic films, Friday’s Seafood Focus features the freshest catches prepared exactly to the diner’s liking, and Amazing Sunday Brunch is a remarkable buffet feast and poolside fun, enhanced with live entertainment. There are also activities ideal for the sun-loving guest such as petanque (including complimentary pastis), kayaking, mountain biking, cooking classes, private yoga/ Pilates sessions, massages, and more.”

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 51


Not content to rest on its already legendary laurels, Samui’s Nikki has just unveiled a second phase, which expands the concept into wider dimensions. They’ve added 32 additional rooms, suites, and villas that are beautifully designed and decorated by famed international conceptual designer, Eric Kuster. These all have stunning sea views, and provide high-end accommodation for larger groups and families. The private pool villas with beach-access and spa-designed saunas top the list. And to round it off there’s also a 75-meter swimming pool on the drawing board.

52 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


This is the original health destination on Koh Samui offering only the best Vegetarian, Raw and Healthy Thai Food. Listed as one of the 50 best restaurants in the world. Over 17 years serving the freshest mouthwatering healthy food. Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner. Daily @ both locations 7:00 am until 9:30 pm. Radiance is a part of The Spa Resorts.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 53


An English national newspaper, The Observer, reviewed these icons some time ago, in an article which admired the glossy Nikki lifestyle and collectively dubbed the clubs ‘the sexiest place on earth’. And, after spending an hour or so at a Nikki Beach party, it’s hard to disagree. There’s an overall ease and an energy that’s infectious. We’ve got our fishermen and their rustic villages. We’ve got our mountain top viewpoints. We’ve got 5-star resorts aplenty. But the world only has one Nikki Beach Resort & Spa. And it’s here, on Koh Samui!

Rob De Wet

___________________________________________ For reservations or further information, telephone 0 7791 4500. www.nikkibeachthailand.com

54 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


HAND-MADE JEWELRY MADE TO ORDER. GOLD, SILVER, LEATHER, PRECIOUS AND SEMI PRECIOUS STONES. LEARN TO MAKE SILVER JEWELRY WITH US IN 1, 2 OR 3 DAYS

LOCATED AT CHAWENG BEACH ROAD PHONE: +(66)0 7742 2594, +(66)08 1370 1791 WWW.THAILAND-JEWELRY.COM CHAWENG BEACH ROAD

Supermarket

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 55


SECONDARY

SCHOOL EDUCATION Stimulating young minds at SCL International School.

Secondary school education has been quoted by the World Bank as being “.. the crucial link between primary schooling, tertiary education, and the labour market. Its ability to connect the different destinations and to take young people where they want to go in life is more important than ever before.” No matter where you are or where you live in the world, education is of utmost importance, and on Samui this is no different for the students and staff at the SCL (previously Samui Centre for Learning) International School in Lamai. The school first opened way back in 2004, running from a small wooden building with just two students. The school prided itself on the family atmosphere, individualised learning and holistic teaching methods, and perhaps this is why it grew and grew and more parents, year after year, started enrolling their children. The wooden huts grew into multiple buildings, they employed more teachers, offered more and more subjects, and after a lot of hard work, in 2009, they went from being just a primary school to offering secondary education too. In March 2010, the school became an accredited Cambridge International Examinations Centre which allowed them to use the Cambridge Primary Years and Lower Secondary Programmes. In March 2011, they were granted ‘International School’ status, one of only two schools on the island, and only the second school in the southeast of Thailand, with this title.

56 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 57


Children start secondary school when they are 11 years old and continue up until the age of 16. There are currently around 50 students in secondary education at the school, which is roughly 12 per class. This allows the teachers to give each of the students individual attention. Some of the secondary school subjects offered here are English, Geography, History, Art, Sports, Thai, Science, Maths, French, Russian and Religious Education (all main world religions are covered so that the students are able to make their own well informed choice.) As a requirement of the UK examination board, all the teachers at this school are UK trained, and there are seven specialist teachers dedicated to secondary education. As part of the school’s refined recruitment process, each applicant goes through a series of interviews with various departments, including an interview with three school board trustee members who actually sit in the UK. The applicants are then tested on their ability to work with the school’s current team to ensure that they really do fit in as a team player. Maybe that is why the school has such a low teacher turnover. Because of this, the children really have a chance to build a relationship with their teachers, feel safe and therefore be in an ideal position to learn. 58 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Put the bounce back in your step and a smile on your face at Breeze spa Here at Breeze spa, we believe that happiness is one of the key foundations for wellness- and that is what our treatments are all about. Whether you’re a lifelong spa devotee, a newcomer to wellness or just someone looking to recharge or unwind, we look forward to showing you how fun it is to feel good!

20% discount on spa packages. Terms and conditions apply

Amari Palm Reef Koh Samui Chaweng Beach, Samui 84320 T +66 (0) 7742 2015-19 F +66 (0) 7742 2394 E palmreef@breeze-spa.com W www.breeze-spa.com

KHAO SOK

The Cliff and River Jungle Resort

Come and Relax with us at The Cliff and River Jungle Resort in magnificent Khao Sok. Enjoy the natural beauty and fresh air at this Scenic Riverside location. Sightseeing Info - Canoeing - International Restaurant Luxury Recreation Facilities - Elephant Trekking

From September 2013, a new range of 45 minute long after-school activities will be offered from Monday to Friday, aimed specifically at the older students. Dance, drama, yoga, film club and basketball are just a few examples. They sound a lot more exciting than the debating, athletics, choir and swimming classes that were offered at my secondary school! The cost of these after-school activities is included in the school fees. SCL International School is accredited by the University of Cambridge’s International Examinations body, is an Edexcel Accredited International School, and is also a Thai Ministry of Education licenced School. Edexcel (from the words ‘education’ and ‘excellence’) is one of the UK’s five main examination boards. It allows the school to offer the same GCSE exams which are offered in schools in the UK. A GCSE is a ‘General Certificate of Secondary Education’ and is generally taken by UK students aged 14-16. Because this is an International School, this qualification is called an IGCSE.

for more information and reservation please call 0 872 718 787, 0 812 721 221, 0 7791 3050 Fax. 0 7791 3099 www.thecliffandriver.com

P. CHAWENG GUEST HOUSE

100 ISLANDS RESORT

Located at the end of Soi Colibri, opposite Centara Grand Beach Resort. Thai owned and managed, offering the beauty of Thai style architecture combined with European comforts.

The first boutique hotel in Suratthani. Reasonably priced with friendly service and a family atmosphere. Relax by the pool or ease your tensions at the luxurious spa. Recommended by Lonely Planet

Tel.: 0 7723 0684

Tel.: 0 7720 1150-8 www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 59


So how do you take day to day education and present it in a way that’s real, covering up-to-date global issues? You send the secondary school students out into the real world to take part in a ‘Residential’. Recently they took part in one called ‘Reefs to Rainforests’. The point of this residential was to learn about conservation and ecology. As part of their trip, they visited a sea turtle breeding centre and learnt about the creature’s life cycle; they took part in a beach cleanup campaign to ensure the sea turtle’s nesting sites were free from debris; they swam in the sea and at night, they learnt about star constellations. They camped overnight in a national park; they hiked through forests; had picnic lunches and even had the chance to swim in a hot spring. They ate seafood, played games and spent a whole day snorkelling and island hopping. They learnt about how litter is damaging the world’s oceans and on a boat trip, each student got the chance to spot litter from the bow of the boat while the other students used nets on long poles to collect the litter. They even stayed overnight with Thailand’s last nomadic forest dwellers - the Mani Tribe. They swam in a waterfall pool; tried to catch fish in a special net and saw many different species of wild birds. I think some adults would be envious of this trip. I know I am!

60 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

As you walk around the school, it becomes clear that both the students and the staff are happy here. Looking through the windows into the classrooms, you can see students engrossed in various lessons. The EAL (English as an Additional Language) team are always on hand in each class to ensure that children who don’t speak English as their first language aren’t left behind. If you would like your child to share in this wonderfully, exciting and supportive learning environment, enrol them before the middle of July in order for them to be accepted for the next term starting in September. The current fee structures can be found on the website.

Colleen Setchell

____________________________________________ For further information, telephone 0 7741 8789 www.sclinternationalschool.com


A few samples from our menu: Calamari Fritti Deep fried squid rings - 300 Baht

Pizza Margherita Tomato, mozzarella and sweet basil - 250 Baht

Pizza Via Vai Cherry tomato, mozzarella, ricotta, gorgonzola, grilled zucchini, rocket salad and parma ham - 420 Baht Pasta Frutti Di Mare Seafood in fresh tomato sauce - 330 Baht

Prosciutto Di Parma & Mozzarella Di Bufala Parma ham & mozzarella cheese - 400 Baht

Panna Cotta Con Salsa Di Ciocclato O Fragola Panna cotta with chocolate or strawberry sauce - 220 Baht Above prices include VAT and service charge

For reservation please call: 0 7741 3431 Chaweng Beach Road

Chaweng Center

“....An Italian Tradition” Koh Samui

Традиционная Итальянская Кухня www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 61


TAKE A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE The latest trend to hit tropical holiday locations has arrived on Koh Tao.

Sea walking. Have you heard of it? Well, we hadn’t - so we chatted to Robert and Christine who’ve brought this trend to Koh Tao, and they revealed what this fascinating underwater activity is all about. Although from a tourism perspective the concept is new to some locations, the actual principle is quite old, and reminiscent of the first divers to explore the ocean. With their big brass diving helmets, they resembled moon walkers rather than the scuba-divers of today. Well, sea walking is a modernised version of the old diving helmets. So how does it work exactly? Well, a rather heavy helmet with a transparent visor is placed on your head; in fact it has glass on three sides, so it’s as though you’re inside a fish bowl. A special apparatus allows normal breathing under the water, as a constant flow of fresh air is pumped via a tube from the boat above. Guides assist in taking you underwater, and accompany you throughout the walk to guarantee your safety. Once you submerge you’ll experience the undersea world up close, and you’ll feel somewhat like Neil Armstrong walking on the moon. Robert and Christine, who hail from the UK, recently moved to Samui from Cyprus where they were in the scuba-diving business for 20 years. For the past nine years,

62 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


they’ve been doing sea walking tours from two operations, on both the east and west coasts of Cyprus. A change of scenery drew them to the Gulf of Thailand, where they hope to semi-retire. Although they live on Samui, the sea walking tours take place in the waters of Koh Tao, off Chalok Bay. They pop across regularly to check on the business, and they have experienced dive masters in charge of the tours, allowing them to focus on marketing the experience to hotels on Samui.

as six people can dive together at the same time. Even if you are getting on in years you can enjoy the adventure, as it’s literally ‘a walk in the park’ with little exertion required compared to scuba-diving or even snorkelling. Those that find regular diving claustrophobic will be pleasantly surprised, as without the need for cumbersome breathing apparatus or mouthpieces, the experience feels more natural. Many who’ve tried sea-walking have overcome a fear of water and moved on to more skilful diving, as it makes the perfect stepping stone.

Sea walking doesn’t require any knowledge of diving, or even swimming for that matter, and you don’t even need to take off your glasses. And ladies, your makeup won’t smudge as it remains dry as a bone within the helmet – much like when an upside-down glass is put into a bowl of water. But anyway, we’re not here to explain the science, but rather the unique experience. There’s no risk of water entering the helmet, and with the fresh air pumped via the tube, it allows you to breathe normally, so no special breathing techniques need to be learnt.

Adventurers arriving by ferry from Samui are collected from the pier, and the trip returns before the last ferry leaves back to Samui, so it’s an easy day excursion. The sea walking boat is sturdy, with on-board toilets and plenty of shade. You’ll receive a pre-departure briefing on the gear, the local marine life, safety procedures and the underwater walking trail. The air-hose is about 15 metres long, allowing a fair amount of mobility.

The experience is often used as an introduction to scuba-diving, and it’s perfect for all ages, with the only restriction being a minimum height of 120cm, as smaller than this makes it uncomfortable to wear the helmet. It’s an ideal family activity

The tour takes up to three groups on the boat, but only six go down at a time, accompanied by two guides. While it’s not your turn, there’s complimentary use of snorkelling equipment to see the marine life from a different perspective, www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 63


or just relax on the boat. The actual sea walk is about half an hour, during which time you’ll enjoy the ultimate sensation as time stops, worries fade away and breathing underwater becomes possible, safe and easy. Anyone who’s apprehensive is encouraged to just lower their heads under the water while standing on the stairs of the boat, get comfortable with the breathing, and usually within minutes, says Robert, they’re walking the seabed. Robert and Christine are keen conservationists, and only do walks on sand, never on coral. They don’t believe in feeding the fish, and nothing may be touched or picked up, not even shells. It’s a case of observing, not disturbing. It’s a wonderful educational experience, allowing walkers to study the mysteries of the underwater world, while not feeling like an outsider – sort of like being teleported into an Animal Planet documentary. This offers the opportunity to experience the undersea world to many who normally would be only able to get as close as a glass bottomed boat-ride otherwise.

64 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

Now, one would expect a trip like this to take a fair chunk of the holiday budget, but this isn’t the case. The cost is 2,000 baht per adult and 1,500 baht for 7-12 year olds – excluding the ferry. This includes pick up at the pier, full insurance, professional guides, complimentary fruit and water, and free use of the snorkelling equipment. Of course, you’ll need to bring sunscreen (for when you’re not underwater), a swimsuit – obviously, a towel, and most importantly, a spirit of adventure! And as if that wasn’t enough, they are already looking into the possibility of expanding the operation to include a site on Samui. Watch this space!

Rosanne Turner ____________________________ For more information, telephone 0 901 650 411. www.underseawalking.com


Romantic views, soothing sounds and classic Italian fare with a modern approach combine to please the most discerning diner. Olivio - a must for visitors and locals alike. Olivio ~ beachfront at Baan Haad Ngam Boutique Resort Chaweng Beach.

Free round trip transfer from Chaweng, Bophut and Choeng Mon. For reservation please call 0 7723 1500

Baan Haad Ngam Boutique Resort & Spa 154 Moo 2, Chaweng Beach, Bophut, Koh Samui, Suratthani 84320 Tel: +66 77 231 500 Mob: +66 81 751 6073 Fax: +66 77 231 520 Email: info@baanhaadngam.com, booking@baanhaadngam.com www.baanhaadngam.com www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 65


MYSTICAL ESCAPE Vana Belle offers an oasis from busy Chaweng, inspired by Thai mythology.

66 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 67


Leaving reception, heading to the lobby lounge, a kunchorn waree (elephant mermaid) greets you from the lily pond that edges the courtyard and sala-style lounge. On closer inspection, several of these quirky brass creatures can be seen frolicking in the pond alongside a few peacocks that also sprout mermaid tails. So intriguing are the statues of mythical creatures that they almost distract from the breath-taking views across the bay. Almost, but not quite. And what a view it is. Perched on the cliff-top of Chaweng Noi, Vana Belle extends down through tropical gardens that incorporate giant granite boulders and established trees, to the soft sands of a pristine bay below. The beach here is not easily accessed except via one of the resorts that lead onto it, so it’s relatively quiet compared to nearby Chaweng. This makes it an ideal location for those that want to escape the crowds but still enjoy easy access to the happening spots. ‘Vana’ is a formal word for forest in Thai. ‘Belle’ means beautiful in French. The idea of a beautiful forest setting alongside a pristine beach was the inspiration for the artwork and décor of this Starwood Hotel, based on the stories of the mythical Himmapan Thai forest. The setting is surreal, and you can just imagine mythical creatures lurking behind boulders, hiding in trees and coming out to play when guests have retired for the night. As part of the Starwood Hotels portfolio of 1,100 resorts and hotels, Vana Belle guests are guaranteed service and facilities of a certain standard. But the resort is also one of 80 in Starwood’s ‘Luxury Collection’, and one of only three in Thailand. This collection distinguishes itself from the rest of the Starwood group in that the properties are individual – not ‘cookie cutter hotels’. Each is unique and the design and décor portrays local treasures. 68 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


KAYAKING Explore the caves and beaches of the Angthong National Marine Park Offices located behind Bondi Pub in central Chaweng and on Chaweng Lake Road opposite Lake View For reservations please call 0 7741 3231 or 0 878 866 097

www.bluestars.info

HOT PROPERTY

2 exciting new villa developments

Vana Belle is a perfect example of contemporary Thai architecture that reflects local traditions down to the ‘rot nam’ welcome ritual when guests arrive, involving flower-infused water. The resort’s 80 rooms are tastefully furnished, combining state-of-the-art technology and entertainment with modern Thai furnishings and have a light and breezy feel. The four room categories all boast private swimming pools, and are exceptionally spacious, with the free-standing Tropical Pool Villas being in excess of 200 square metres. Other features of these indulgent villas include a 24-hour private butler service and a champagne bar in addition to the mini bar. The villas, as well as the four types of pool suites – Classic, Deluxe, Grand and Ocean View – offer plenty of natural light and open up to private pools and spacious terraces offering ocean views, making the most of the tropical surroundings and climate. Of course, if you prefer a climate-controlled environment, turn on the air-conditioning, close the doors and still enjoy the views through the expansive windows. And the bathrooms are not only spacious, but spa-like with features such as sink-in bathtubs and rain showers, luxury body products and plush white dressing gowns and slippers. But as nice as the rooms are, at some point you’ll want to leave and explore the resort and what it has to offer. Vana Belle offers two restaurant locations to its guests, as well outside visitors. The open-air Panali is located at beach level, alongside the indigo-tiled pool and deck area, perfect for lunchtime dining or evenings, catching the sea breeze. Here, the menu includes Italian, International and Thai options. And with the Director of Culinary Services, Dario Congera being Italian, you’re guaranteed authentic Italian dishes. The look and atmosphere is casual and relaxed with a vaulted thatched ceiling and wooden fans whirling overhead, as well as comfortable cushioned chairs that coax you into lingering over your meal. There’s a separate pool menu with lighter options, which you can enjoy from the comfort of your pool lounger.

Award-winning architect Prime location, 5 mins to the beach Panoramic sea views Excellent investment opportunity Prices from THB 15.2M Full rental & villa management programme 

www.theridgesamui.com

www.cascadessamui.com

Tel: 0831 079 684 / 0856 920 550 www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 69


Kiree is also where hotel guests start their day (and outside diners can book too) with a breakfast fit for a king. Not only is there a vast buffet spread – which even includes oysters - but diners can order a la carte dishes too, such as eggs benedict, at no extra charge. Aside from the selection of teas and coffees, breakfast beverages include fresh juices and smoothies and even a Bloody Mary should you wish. Another highlight of the breakfast buffet is the choice of too-tempting-to-resist homemade pastries. Guests looking for a special dining experience can enjoy the services of the in-house creative dining consultant who can plan a special or celebratory meal. An intimate dinner can be set up in the privacy of your room, on the beach, poolside, or at the ‘secret pond’ for the ultimate romantic dining experience.

Vana Belle’s signature restaurant, Kiree, is located higher up in the resort, positioned to make the most of the views. It’s open for breakfast and dinner and specialises in traditional Southern Thai cuisine. Here, the look is more sophisticated and the dining area that looks onto the show kitchen has been cleverly furnished with seating arranged to resemble a lounge, once again encouraging ‘no rush’ dining. 70 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

People often speak of ‘wow factor’, but chatting to General Manager, Mark O’Sullivan, it’s a different reaction they are after when guests first see Vana Belle. Flashy and opulent can ‘wow’, but Vana Belle rather aims to create a sense of relaxation and bliss. You arrive at the lobby and see the view for the first time – aaah. You open the door to your elegant yet comfortable suite for the first time – aaah. Your meal arrives and you savour that first bite – aaah. This sound of satisfaction and contentment is the one most heard from guests as all their worries melt away on arriving at their mystical forest holiday.

Rosanne Turner ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

For reservations or further information, telephone 0 7791 5555. www.vanabellekohsamui.com


THREE, TWO, ONE, GO! If you’re an adrenaline junkie or after a bit of fun, head for Samui Go-Kart.

72 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Go on, admit it! You’ve always fancied yourself a bit of a Stirling Moss (if you’re over 60 years old). And if you have no idea who that is, okay, let’s try Lewis Hamilton. Most people, deep down, would love to get behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car and give it their best shot. Given the chance, few of us would have the guts, and even fewer of us would be given the chance. If you’re after an adrenaline rush and want to let out your inner Lewis Hamilton, or Sebastian Vettel, then Samui Go-Kart in Bophut is the place to go. This must be one of Samui’s oldest man-made attractions, as the course has been open since 1993 – meaning it’s almost as old as the island’s airport, and the vehicles go almost as fast as the planes! So what can you expect? Well, the track is 500 metres long, and you can choose from different categories of kart depending on your level of daredevilness and experience. Beginners, children, or the not-so-brave should start with

the fun kart with a 5.5HP, 4-stroke engine that can reach speeds of 40kph. Those with a bit of experience can opt for the pro-kart with a 13HP, 4-stroke engine with a capacity to reach speeds of 75kph. Wannabe Formula 1 racers will love the thrill of the speed-kart with a 25HP, 4-stroke engine that reaches a whopping 125kph! If you prefer to ride tandem, the fun kart and the pro kart both come as double karts. Ten minutes doesn’t sound long, but apparently it’s all that most people can handle as it gives the arms quite a work out. Karts are automatic, so you won’t be distracted by trying to change gears as you negotiate the corners at high speed. Vehicles are equipped with seatbelts, helmets are compulsory, and there are also rules about not wearing loose-fitting clothing that could get caught in the wheels. With the wind in your hair in these open karts, 125kph must feel like low flying. www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 73


And if you need a bit more convincing, here is an extract from a recent TripAdvisor review that sums up the experience quite well, “I visited here in February 2012 with my partner. I did two ten-minute drives, with the second most powerful carts. My God, what an experience! At the end of each session I was physically exhausted! When you drive fast you really need to use your arms, back and shoulders to keep the cart on line around the bends. It was like doing a major gym workout. My partner had a great time too, she just putted around the course at snails’ pace and I overtook her about eight times - not that I bragged about it afterwards! After a month in Vietnam and Thailand visiting temples, shooting guns, and scuba diving in Koh Tao, this just beats walking through the Vietnam War tunnels in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon).” This lady’s experience just makes you wonder… “My husband and I tried the gokarts while we were on vacation on Samui. It was a lot of fun going around the track and made us feel like racing car drivers. They drive on the right-hand side in Thailand, so it was a little weird for us who are used to driving on the left-hand side, but it’s easy to make the adjustment since you just follow the tracks.” As we drive on the left side in Thailand, let’s hope her only driving experience was on the Samui Go-Kart track! You’ll find a few tables and chairs in the shade for those that just want to watch, and drinks are available from the counter inside. There’s an adjoining gym with 74 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Between them, they can cater for just about any event you can imagine, from 25 people on a sightseeing daytrip to three couples or a family on a five-day cruise.

Fine gold and silver jewelry manufacturer with diamonds, precious stones (ruby, sapphire, emerald, etc.) semi-precious stones (blue topaz, amethyst, tsavolite, aquamarine, etc.) and pearls (cultured and South Sea pearls - Tahitian pearls) Tailor-made with modern designs. We also offer professional wood carvings, paintings and local souvenirs. Most competitive prices and best quality on Samui. Open for more than 25 years, we are the largest retailer and producer on the island. All our pieces come with certificate of authenticity.

the going rates at 180 baht per day, 600 baht per week, or 1,500 baht per month. The location on the ring road near many hotels means it’s convenient should you wish to keep up your fitness routine while on holiday. Samui Go-Kart is located along the ring road, about 600 metres past the entrance to Fisherman’s Village when coming from Chaweng, and the track is open daily from 09:00 am until 09:00 pm. They offer free transfers to and from your hotel too. Rates for the go-karts are kids’ karts 600 baht, pro karts 700 baht and speed karts 1,000 baht for ten minutes each. And if you’re planning a corporate team-building event, a few rounds neck-to-neck around the track is a great way to burn off some steam and show the boss who’s really the boss – well for ten minutes anyway.

Доступные цены и лучшее качество на Самуи. Более 25 лет мы являемся крупнейшими производителям, занимаемся розничной торговлей на острове. Все наши изделия имеют сертификат подлинности

Samui Lapidary, Maenam, Koh Samui Free transport service. Open daily 09.00 - 18.00. Tel: 0 7724 7845-6 Email: samuilapidary@hotmail.com www.samuilapidary.com Осуществляем бесплатный трансфер ежедневно с 9.30 до 18.00.

Rosanne Turner

___________________________________________ For further information, telephone 0 7742 5097.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 75


78 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


MOON STRUCK

The Full Moon Party has become one of the biggest events on the calendar of today’s young-at-heart. The monthly Full Moon Parties at Koh Pha-Ngan’s Haad Rin Beach have now become an international legend. It’s tempting to simply put this all down to a lot of young people letting rip – a bit like one gigantic student party. But with this having been going on for more than 25 years, and with numbers now hitting the 50,000 mark, there’s a lot more to it than that. There’s no clear starting point. Yes, there are rumours of hippies and drop-outs in the mid ’80s having regular get-togethers on the beach. But the cultural roots go deeper, and it’s not possible to talk about the Full Moon Parties without peeling back not only the surface of Thai tourism, but also delving deeper into the layers of discontent which emerged as far back as during the Vietnam War. But back to the here and now and, being simplistic, the time before the ’60s was an era of innocence. Everyone smoked, teachers were respected, policemen strolled around alone, news reports in the papers and on TV went mostly unquestioned and knives and guns were only seen on TV and in movies. Then the decade of the ’60s saw America lead a worldwide generation into disillusion. This was epitomised by the acid guru Dr Timothy Leary advising us to “ . . . turn on tune in and drop out”. This was, in itself, an icon of the times. But the seed, once sown, didn’t die.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 79


It ran through into the next decade with the search for alternative realities and enlightenment. Many turned their back on familiar society and headed for Nepal or India. Some were even so stoned that they turned right by accident and came across a tiny and remote coconut island in Thailand by the name of Samui. But at the same time, in small towns and cities everywhere, the emerging generation not only inherited this now-established distrust of the ‘establishment’ but also found themselves in the midst of a social and political tsunami. Unemployment rocketed. Immigrants from Turkey and nomadic gypsies from Iron Curtain countries plagued Germany and France. The youth of Europe bowed under the weight of soul-less jobs with no prospects. England lost its musical integrity and nihilistic punk rock became the flagship. And everywhere the older generation dismissed the importance of lifestyle-music and its value to their children. An entirely new youth culture had crept into place almost unnoticed during the 1980’s and had become a way of life for hundreds of thousand of young people worldwide. It was the era of ‘The Weekend’. Dull, grey dead-end jobs were tolerated only as a filler until the next weekend. And 80 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


20

ars 11 ye

Email: moryapharmacy@hotmail.com www.moryasamui.com

this was a lifestyle built on drugs – more precisely, just one drug. The flirtation with chemical enlightenment had been dropped in favour of the weekend escape. ‘Ecstasy’ emerged as the only possible choice. It made you want to dance. It made every whisper of breeze, or touch or caress, feel like silk. And it kept you going non-stop until work on Monday. This was the post-disco era of soul clubs and rare American vinyl. Then came the rave, house music, garage and trance. Music no longer carried any message – it was the message. It throbbed and it pounded. It carried you like a surfer on a never-ending wave. Rock concerts and festivals – some with a quarter of a million happy, hazy people, flourished alongside this club culture. And this was the soil in which the seedlings of the Full Moon Parties flourished. But make no mistake about it – it’s all about getting out of your skull. Ten years ago just about every little restaurant on KPG had magic mushrooms on the menu. They placed a joint on your plate, not a bon-bon, when you paid the bill. It’s only to be expected that local government and tourist press machines wanted to gloss this down. And, happily, today, this blatancy has all but disappeared. There’s too much risk, and the penalties in Thailand are harsh. But could anyone across the globe imagine that 50,000 young people want to go to Koh Pha-Ngan just to jig about aimlessly? www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 81


No – the fuel for today’s parties is alcohol. This appears universally in the form of ‘the bucket’; a small plastic or aluminium ice-bucket filled with ice, coke or soda and the alcohol of your choice – plus half a dozen straws. Top of the faves here is the local whiskey known as Sang Som, as it’s cheap and cheerful. But every other spirit is also readily available.

plastic, and plots their GPS routes across the globe via online discount flight shops and TripAdvisor. They come safely in numbers, three or four together, for company and security. All of them land for a day or so on Samui just to say they’ve seen it. Then they head for Koh Pha-Ngan, usually several days in advance, to secure their lodgings.

The Full Moon experience has now firmly become a part of the‘ gap year’ culture, largely due to Danny Boyle’s cult movie, ‘The Beach’, which appeared in 2000. Every European teenager (plus USA and Australia) now expects to take a year off between leaving school and going to university. But this generation travels with WiFi connectivity, with iPads and iPhones on parentally-endorsed

If further proof is needed of the subcultural status of ‘the tribe’, then look no further than the syllabuses of most of today’s colleges and universities. Workshops offering hair braiding, body-painting, juggling, fire-juggling and drumming exist alongside the more-traditional genres of dance and mime. It’s ironic that the original hero of The Beach, ‘Richard’, was a restless soul escaping the

82 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


The Farmer Restaurant & Bar is the only restaurant on Samui offering a unique natural ambience, set amid paddy fields and green meadows. It is perfect for a relaxed lunch, or dinner under the twinkling stars. Visit The Farmer and experience the real meaning of “Back to Nature” whilst enjoying the best of local Thai, Western seafood dishes.

Farmer’s Duck Voted Samui’s No.1 Tasty Duck

Exclusive Lunch Promotion at The Farmer 12:00-15:00 daily

Pizza Margherita, 1 scoop ice cream, 1 bottle of water. 250 Baht Farmer’s Duck. Crispy fried duck served with herb sauce & rice gourd soup, fresh tropical fruit, 1 bottle of water. 299 Baht

institutionalised rat race in search of Utopia. And yet today’s colleges and related institutions are offering training in what to do when you get there. A sign of the times? Quite probably. But it’s most definitely something that the resorts, merchants, traders and businessmen of Koh Pha-Ngan are delighted to see every month, at the time around each full moon!

Rob De Wet

The Farmer Restaurant & Bar Maenam, Koh Samui Tel: 077 447 222, 077 247 979, 0 830 922 632 email: info@thefarmerrestaurantsamui.com www.thefarmerrestaurantsamui.com

TOP TEN 2011 www.tripadvisor.com

Free transfer for dinner guests - Nathon - Maenam - Bophut. Other areas 300 Baht return. Для гостей из районов Nathon - Maenam Bophut - трансфер бесплатный. Гостям из других районов острова мы возвращаем 300 батт от стоимости такси. www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 83


MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE Discovering what’s behind the beautiful products at Nature Art Gallery.

The heat is beating down on you, you’re hot and you’re tired. You’ve visited many shops along the Chaweng Beach Road but you’re eager to step away from the hustle and bustle for a few hours. You look up and realise you’re standing in front of Nature Art Gallery. You decide to give it a try. Stepping inside you immediately feel the cool air. You look around at the beautiful wood panelled walls and the gorgeous polished redwood floor. Pretty, shiny gold and silver jewellery is displayed everywhere. Hanging on display boards, laid out on tables covered with animal skin, draped over bits of wood, hanging off various stands. Colourful stones are laid out in black velvet trays on a huge table in the middle of the room. Leather handbags hang from stands in the corner. As you walk around and hear the wood creaking under your feet, you feel like you’ve stepped onto a mystical ship carrying goods from distant lands. In a way, you have. Many of these beautiful items (or what they’re made of) have come from all over the world. Business owners Michael Trav and Shai Nissim have not only been friends for many years, but have been in business together for over five. They each have more than 20 years of experience working with stones, and the ones they sell in the shop, both precious and semi-precious, have come from as far as South Africa and Ethiopia. They even have items made from fossils or meteorites. Shai comes from a background of Swedish massage, hot stone massage, reflexology, Shiatsu (which is Japanese for “finger pressure”), reiki and energy work. You’re certainly in good hands here, and with experience as long as he’s had, you can feel free to ask as many questions as you like about the crystals and their healing properties. Shai showed us around the shop, and as we padded around barefoot, I realised how calm I felt. The atmosphere in the shop is incredibly relaxing, the music soothing.

84 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 85


As well as the Samui branch of Nature Art Gallery, which has been open for four years, there are two other branches on Koh Pha-Ngan, which have been open for more than ten years. The name was chosen because all the products in the shop are made from natural materials. Leather, wood, stones, silver, gold and even stingray! There are a few dedicated artists who create various pieces for the gallery. Hari Shankar, a master jeweller, has had the privilege of creating jewellery for the Nepalese King. On the counter (which is a huge polished tree trunk), are a few trays, each containing 100 rings that Hari has made. Each ring has intricate carving around a central stone on the band. This is traditional Nepalese carving and each ring in that box has its own unique design. There’s no chance of meeting someone else with the same ring! Lou Guerin makes beautiful leather handbags with a trademark silver clip in the shape of a frog. He uses a similar design in a range of jewellery, using not only the frog, but also a snake and dragon. Unique and very striking and unusual. A display of colourful stone bracelets catches my eye at the side of the shop. I admire the purple amethyst stone bracelet. Shai tells me that the stones choose the person, not the other way around. I’ve always felt drawn to amethysts, maybe it’s time to actually buy one! If you like any of the bracelets here, but want them personalised using stones specifically to treat certain medical conditions, ailments or mental states, Nature Art Gallery are more than happy to help.

86 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Experience tranquillity for your mind, body and spirit at Prana’s beach front spa. Soothe, ease and re-energise your body and senses, with the delightful range of massages and treatments, all expertly done through the skilful hands of our therapists. Enjoy any of these massages for only THB 1,500 nett for two persons (valid for appointments from 10am to 2pm daily) Aromatherapy Massage (90 minutes) The use of essential oils and herbs promotes healing in this treatment that induces circulatory and respiratory responses. The treatment is more gentle and sensual, with some focus on lymphatic-oriented massage.

Spa on the beach

Thai Massage (90 minutes) One of the world’s greatest massage traditions, this treatment employs yoga and acupressure which aims to improve spinal alignment while increasing overall energy. It is done with the person fully clothed and without oil. Special Promotion for readers: Present this ad at the spa for 15% discount on regular rates, for any treatment at the spa. (Not valid with the above promotion) Advance reservation is required. Call now for an appointment at +6677 246 362.

RELAX, PURIFY AND REJUVENATE

16/8, 16/13-26 Moo 4, Bophut, Koh Samui, Suratthani, 84320 Thailand

www.pranaresorts.com www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 87


Crystal healing is often subjected to a lot of cynicism. Some believe it’s more of a placebo effect, or the fact that a person really wants to believe that something will change. But really, there’s no harm is finding a beautiful stone that you really like and making it into a unique piece of jewellery. In order to understand a little more about crystals, we need to understand a little more about chakras. I’m sure you’ve heard this term before. The word ‘chakra’ is derived from the Sanskrit word meaning ‘wheel’, and when clairvoyants see chakras, they view them as colourful wheels with a hub in the centre. A chakra is said to be the location of a life force or vital energy. They correspond to vital points in a person’s body such as nerves, arteries and veins. They start at the base of the tailbone and head all the way up the spine to the crown of the head. Each chakra not only has a corresponding colour, but also ‘controls’ certain areas of the body. The number of actual chakras depends on which school of thought you follow. For instance, the Hindu has a seven chakra system; the Himalayan Bönpo tradition has six.

So if you suffer from headaches, for example, a crystal healing practitioner would place a purple stone on your forehead (which is where you find the purple coloured chakra). Beliefs aside, these stones, are incredibly beautiful. When you buy any of the crystals, you’re given an easy to read information sheet explaining the different qualities of the stones. But perhaps you aren’t in need of any healing at the moment. Maybe, like me, you’re captivated by the colours, the intricate designs and the pretty colours. Nature Art Gallery also specialise in making custom jewellery and you can design your own earrings, necklaces or even your wedding rings. If you’re really taken by the designs you’ve seen in the store, why not do what many customers do time and time again. Take part in their jewellery making course run by Tal Bakal, an Israeli jeweller who has been teaching and doing silver work for over ten years. There are one, two or three day workshops available where you can learn to make silver jewellery with either your own designs or with inspiration taken from your visit to Samui.

Colleen Setchell

_____________________________________________ For further information, telephone 0 7742 2594 www.thailand-jewelry.com

88 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


90 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Have you ever been jealous of those passengers who have access to the business and first class lounges when travelling? Well, if you’re flying with Bangkok Airways, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the level of service and facilities offered to all Bangkok Airways passengers, particularly at their airport lounges.

IN STYLE Whether it’s a short domestic flight or to an international destination, Bangkok Airways provides comfort and luxury.

Waiting for your flight to be called can sometimes seem as though time has stood still, sitting on a hard plastic seat with nothing to do. But not so with Bangkok Airways’ clean and comfortable boutique lounges, where you can relax while waiting to board. At every airport, and for no extra charge, the airline offers plush and fashionable lounges to all of its passengers. Here, travellers can check their email, enjoy a spread of snacks such as sandwiches, muffins and pastries as well as juices, and tea or coffee, while relaxing in comfortable seating. And of course, every parent knows the ‘joy’ of travelling with young children. It’s draining, it’s tiring and not only do you need to keep them entertained, but you need to keep them from disturbing other passengers too. Bangkok Airways understands this, so they’ve created a kid’s corner to occupy little ones, giving parents a chance to relax.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 91


Award-winning Bangkok Airways is renowned for its level of service, living up to its slogan of being ‘Asia’s Boutique Airline’. Whether you’re planning a quick hop across to another part of Thailand or flying to one of the airline’s selected international destinations, Bangkok Airways provides the ultimate experience when flying in the region, with attractive airports and lounges, a modern fleet of aircraft, exceptional in-flight meals, and unparalleled service. The airline services the prime tourism areas of Thailand, as well as several international destinations. Locally, there are nine locations to fly to, namely Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Krabi, Lampang, Pattaya, Phuket, Samui, Sukhothai, and Trat. If you’re looking at exploring further afield, try one of their 11 international stops: Dhaka, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Luang Prabang, Maldives, Mumbai, Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Singapore, Vientiane and Yangon. If you’d like to see the flight schedule and routes, check out the website, as they also add new destinations yearly as the company grows from strength to strength. In 2004, Bangkok Airways made a bold move to define themselves as ‘Asia’s Boutique Airline,’ and the airline of choice for discerning travellers. With this mind-thought, they redesigned airport lounges, took a stance to provide superior 92 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

customer service from check-in to arrival, and did a major upgrade of the in-flight meals. They also purchased new modern aircraft, all of which makes for a reliable and dependable airline, while maintaining a contemporary and stylish boutique-like atmosphere. Bangkok Airways owns and operates three boutique airports – Samui, Sukhothai, and Trat. Each airport’s unique architecture was designed to blend in with its natural and cultural surroundings. And in saying that, many a tourist landing at Samui has felt as though they’ve landed directly at their resort, so stylish is the airport. Samui Airport’s open-air, thatched terminal buildings blend seamlessly with the tropical gardens and coconut groves of the island. It also has Samui Park Avenue – a breezy outdoor promenade that features great dining, shopping and entertainment venues. And in keeping with the local theme, Sukhothai Airport, situated among the rice paddies, reflects the classic Siamese pagodas found in Sukhothai’s rich history as Thailand’s ancient capital. Interestingly, Bangkok Airways also grows special


Fine Beach & Hillside Dining at Samui's Newest Venue Quality Thai, Seafood & International Dishes The Ultimate Samui Dining Experience!

organic rice from the surrounding rice paddies, and serves this rice as part of its appetising in-flight menu. Finally, Trat Airport reflects the province’s natural environment, and its open-air passenger terminals are built in the spirit of genuine respect for the local people, culture, and surrounding environment.

The Barge Nora Buri's Signature Restaurant Chaweng North For Reservation Tel: 0 7791 3555 E-mail: thebarge@noraburiresort.com www.noraburiresort.com

Airline food. Love it or hate it. But chances are that on a Bangkok Airways flight you’ll be pleasantly surprised by what’s served up – and this after snacking away in the lounge before the flight of course. Each in-flight meal is prepared and delivered using the highest level of food safety standards and, most importantly, superior flavour and a choice of dishes. Even on short flights, each passenger is offered tasty snacks and plenty to drink. One of Bangkok Airways’ smaller destinations worthy of mention is Krabi on the Andaman coast. Krabi province has grown in popularity as a resort destination, and it’s the gateway to well-known Koh Phi Phi. The area as a whole is known for its white-sand beaches and spectacular limestone formations. It draws both the backpacker and the luxury traveller with its mix of accommodation, eateries and natural attractions. www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 93


Ao Nang is popular, as is Haad Nopphara Thara – a long thin stretch of beach split in two by a river, parts of which are most easily reached by boat. Also on the mainland, but only accessible by boat is picturesque Railay Beach, which is almost as popular is Koh Phi Phi. Railay is most famous for its rock-climbing opportunities, attracting the adventure-traveller. And just half an hour north of Krabi town is Bokkarani National Park, home to a few rare bird species that inhabit this natural rainforest, making it a ‘must see’ stop for birding holidaymakers. Although Krabi town is mostly visited as a stop to either Railay or Koh Phi Phi, it’s worth a day of exploring, and offers some good restaurant choices too. Tempted yet? Well, if you’re on Samui and fancy seeing what the Andaman coast has to offer before heading home, then Bangkok Airways offers a daily flight to Krabi from Samui – 94 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


SAREERAYA CHAWENG BEACH

SAMUI

Every Monday

Thai Buffet & Seafood Beach BBQ Spice up your evening with our superb Thai Buffet using only the freshest ingredients available to create a real Thai taste. Includes a large selection of Thai appetizers, Main Courses, Salads, Desserts, Beach BBQ, Beef, Steaks, Seafood. From 07.00 - 10.00 pm 1,200 THB adults 600 THB kids (6-12 years) Children below 6 years old free of charge

Every Thursday

Asian Buffet & Seafood Beach BBQ and it’s under an hour’s journey. If your point of departure is Bangkok, you’ll have the choice of two daily flights to Krabi. Not that we’re chasing you away from Samui of course…

Come enjoy all of your tasty Asian favorites! We offer a varied menu to suit all tastes including Asian & Western food, Sushi, Sashimi, BBQ with Australian Beef, Steaks, Seafood caught fresh from the Sea, Dessert Buffet and other delicacies, over 40 dishes of delight.

If you haven’t yet experienced a flight with Bangkok Airways, do yourself a favour and try it the next time you travel. You’ll soon see why it’s the preferred airline of so many business and leisure travellers in the region. Happy travels!

From 07.00 - 10.00 pm 1,400 THB adults 700 THB kids (6-12 years) Children below 6 years old free of charge

Rosanne Turner

______________________________________________________ For reservations or further information, telephone 0 2270 6699. www.bangkokair.com

Day and location of Buffet subject to change, please double check with us for a guaranteed booking

at Sareeraya Villas & Suites, Chaweng Beach, Koh Samui. Tel: 0 7791 4333, Email: info@sareeraya.com www.sareeraya.com

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 95


96 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


the kids entertained. ep ke lp he to s d n a rl watery wonde Samui has a couple of

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 97


Holidaying with children can be tiring for parents, as little ones are not always keen to just sit under a palm tree with a book and relax. They want to do things. Fun things. Active things. And unlike cats and water, kids and water usually mix quite well, especially in the heat. But Mum and Dad don’t necessarily feel like being active and throwing themselves down water slides for hours on end, so a good compromise is a child-friendly venue that has plenty to entertain the kids, is supervised so that safety isn’t an issue, and has a good chill area for parents while their offspring burn off energy. Well, Samui has two such locations, quite different from each other, meaning that you’re able to go to both and avoid boredom – not that kids will ever get bored playing at either! Aquapark Chaweng, Samui’s latest child-friendly attraction, is conveniently located in the sea – yes in the sea - in front of Monkey Bay Resort. You’ll find it in the middle of the main beach, next to Chaba Resort and Beachcomber, and an added bonus is that there’s plenty of parking at Monkey Bay, a rare find in Chaweng.

98 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Fine Beachfront Dining serving Thai, Seafood & International Cuisine. Chaweng Beach Road Chaweng North Tel: 0 7742 9400 Fax: 0 7742 9498 E-mail: reservation@norabeachresort.com www.norabeachresort.com

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 99


Basically, the park consists of giant inflatables that are anchored down, and the area is cordoned off so children are safe from the jetskis and other obstacles. And with safety a firm consideration, life jackets are compulsory for all, even the adults. Safety monitors patrol the watery obstacle course and ensure that all are playing by the rules and gently guiding the less sure-footed with climbing up the giant contraptions. And you’ll often find parents tempted to join their kids to ‘help’ them climb. But in truth, it’s just too tempting not to give it a go. Kids (and some parents) take on the challenge of rockers and totters, giant trampolines with slides and human catapult bags attached, as well as the iceberg climbing walls – two metres high for the little tots and a more imposing five metres high for the brave (or foolish). It’s a great way to burn off energy while staying cool in the water. Just remember to bring the waterproof sunscreen. Regular events are held at Aquapark Chaweng, so it’s a good idea to check out their website so you don’t miss out on upcoming attractions. Over Easter weekend, there was fun to be had by all, as adrenaline junkies (both adults and children) took part in the Extreme Wipeout Challenge. Entrance was only 100 baht per person and, according to owners Sarah and Roger, the children beat the adults hands down. Contestants competed to see who could balance on top of the UFO rockers, climb the five-metre high iceberg and run the gauntlet between the giant trampolines without falling off. There were trophies for those who completed the course the fastest in each category. And staying with the spirit of Easter, the park hosted a free Easter egg hunt on Easter Sunday, which was greatly enjoyed by both local and visiting children. But if you missed out, don’t despair, as you can book Aquapark Chaweng for

100 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

private functions too, or host your own corporate event. Or, for something a little different to just pub-crawling, perhaps celebrate your stag or hen party on the giant inflatables for a day to remember, full of laughs and priceless photo opportunities. The park is open seven days a week from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, waves permitting (check their website for weather conditions), but can be booked at night for private functions too. Entrance is 200 baht per person for an hour, but only 350 baht for a half day – 10:00 am to 2:00 pm, or 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm. And if you have the energy for a full day session, it will only set you back 500 baht. Rates are the same for adults and children, but under-fives and over sixty-fives are free - go Granny! Group rates are available and there’s a special kids’ party rate, including food. And speaking of food, the Monkey Bay Beach Bar offers an excellent selection of both Thai and Western food at reasonable prices. Sit at tables set on the beach, under giant trees, or take advantage of the kids being occupied to grab a massage at the beach sala. If you’re in the Lamai area, and want to try out a more ‘traditional’ type of waterpark, pop in to Coco Splash. Here you’ll find water slides for all ages, and a dedicated area for tiny tots where they’re out of harm’s way from more boisterous older kids. Slides range from tame to heart-stopping, so it’s a perfect place if you have different degrees of dare-devils in your clan. Choose from slides called ‘Niagara’, ‘Funny Snake’, ‘Anaconda’, ‘Twister’ or the ‘Banana’. Relax in the ‘Tropical Bubble’ Jacuzzi-type pool or laze around in the Laguna Pool.


2 Sp dis 0% a cou tr ea nt tm en ts on

Our Siam Ten Senses Treatment focuses on the ten main senses in human body. Restoring body systems and improving the balance.

Green Resort Green Spa Detoxifying and Slimming Program Healthy Thai Restaurant Natural Wing Health Spa & Resort 11/5 Moo 6, Maenam, Koh Samui, Thailand Tel: 0 7760 2111, 0 7760 2112 Fax: 0 7744 7243 Mobile: 0 819 682 796 Email: info@naturalwing.com, www.naturalwing.com

When your appetite gets the better of you, Coco Splash has an onsite restaurant, with both Thai and Western choices, and several bamboo salas are dotted around the park where parents can relax while youngsters enjoy the slides and pools. Coco Splash is open Tuesday to Sunday, from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm. Entrance for a day-pass is based on height with those above 130cm classed as adult, and charged at 450 baht. If you are under 130cm it’s 350 baht, and mini-mites under 90cm go free. So if your kids are looking for a little aqua action that’s more than just floating on a lilo, it’s well-worth checking out Aquapark Chaweng or Coco Splash in Lamai. You’ll be forever in their good books (well, for a day or two at least) and you may even be tempted to try out the inflatables or slides yourself.

Rosanne Turner

______________________________ aquaparkchaweng.wordpress.com www.samuiwaterpark.com

If you are looking for something wonderful and different, Zazen restaurant is the place for you to discover. Their master chef emphasises the use of healthy organic ingredients while infusing dining participation. Zazen is truly one of the most romantic and serene beachside dining restaurants on the island. Every night this charming establishment lights up over 100 candles to set the ambiance for you to experience. Tel: 0 7742 5085

Email: info@samuizazen.com

Website: www.samuizazen.com

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 101


RELAXING AND PARTYING IN ONE HOLIDAY Experiencing the best of two worlds with KC Resorts.

102 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


When asked to interview the general manager of KC Resorts and Over Water Villas, I was looking forward to viewing another of Koh Samui’s beautiful resorts. Imagine my surprise to discover not one, not two (or even three) but four stunning properties which, even though they fall under the same company, each have their own individual feel and style. I spoke to the General Manager of the KC Group, Ran Sadikario, and asked him what brought him from his native Israel across the world to Thailand. “I have always been in the hotel industry and I saw a real chance with this position to use my experience and knowledge of hotel management within a well-established and reputable international company. The KC Group manages four properties here on Samui; KC Resort, Over Water Villas, KC Hotel and Beach Club. They include everything from a 5-star luxury resort to an energetic beach club.” Ran is also KC Group’s director for all businesses in Thailand, and he feels that the country has a lot to offer besides good business. The KC Group itself has properties all over the world in America, Canada, Costa Rica, Europe and Israel. They are a rapidly growing group and already have their eyes on another property on Samui, as well as in Phuket.

When I arrived at KC Resort and saw both the resort and the Over Water Villas on the hillside, I asked Ran how the two resorts differed. “KC Resort is a 5-star tranquil resort with the normal features you’d expect from a luxury resort such as a king size bed, mini-bar, complimentary Wi-Fi and double seated Jacuzzis with light therapy systems and rain showers with acupressure jets. Half of the rooms have a sea view and half have a garden view. The resort’s main restaurant ‘The View Restaurant and Wine Lounge’ has an open terrace overlooking a neighbouring island, and boasts magnificent views of the sea. We pride ourselves on the home-crafted cuisine and vast wine selection. You can also relax in the three-tiered infinity pool. “The Over Water Villas are luxury villas just next door to the resort. They are tiered up the hillside which means they all have sea views. Each villa has its own private pool underneath the room and all you need to do is walk out onto your private balcony and step down into your pool. Swim under your villa and you can wave to your partner through the large glass panel in the floor, at the foot of the bed. There are huge remotecontrolled sunshades to protect you from the sun or, if you prefer, you can enjoy relaxing inside the air-conditioned villa with its elegant wood panelled walls. If you really want a treat, open up the large wooden concertina window above the double seated Jacuzzi, and enjoy a private view of the brilliantly blue sea below. We also offer romantic holidays and honeymoon packages and can even arrange for the rooftop to be lit with candles for asking that special question.” “So the hillside properties have a relaxing, quiet, laid-back feel to them. Does that mean the KC Hotel and Beach Club are more energetic and lively?” I asked Ran.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 103


“Yes. They are both in the centre of Chaweng and on the same property. The KC Hotel has pool access rooms, sea view rooms (with balconies), luxury sea view rooms and stylish pool villas. The villas all have two bedrooms, each with their own entrance. For the ultimate in holiday luxury, everything in the rooms is remote controlled - the air-conditioner, the lights and the 42” LCD TV (which you can even watch from your Jacuzzi!). Apart from the four villas, which have their own private pools, all rooms overlook the sparkling blue 30 metre long hotel swimming pool. “The Beach Club, as the name suggests, is right on the seafront. Here you can indulge in a glass of champagne while reclining on deluxe white wicker sun loungers, or enjoy a cigar while admiring the unusually shaped pool. This classy entertainment area has a real energetic vibe, and for six hours every afternoon, there is a pool party with different DJs who treat the guests to energetic club music. We often have other special forms of entertainment too, such as a saxophone player, rhythmic drums and dancers.”

104 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Samui Discover authentic Indian Cuisine

Noori India Restaurant - Chaweng Center Chaweng Beach Road, opp. Chaweng Buri Noori India Restaurant - Chaweng South at Chaweng Cove Resort Noori India Cooking Center - Chaweng South Soi Colibri, opp. Centara Grand Beach Resort For reservation (English) - 0 867 407 873 or 0 7741 3108 For reservation (Thai) - 0 813 960 283 E-mail: nooriindia_samui@yahoo.com www.nooriindiasamui.com

NiCoL B by Nikky Noodles

LONDON

SHE FINDS COLOR IN THE DARKEST PLACES S H E F I N D S B E A U T Y I N T H E S A D D E S T O F FA C E S

ACCESSORIES & FASHION DESIGN STUDIO K O H S A M U I B R A N C H , F I S H E R M A N S V I L L A G E , B O P H U T, S A M U I M O B I L E: 0 8 4 7 7 1 6 9 4 8 , FA C E B O O K: N I K KY N O O D L E S EMAIL: NIKKYNOODLESDESIGNS@GMAIL.COM

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 105


106 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


“I can really picture the scene: blue skies, white sands, blue pool, bikinis, beautiful ladies, club music, dancing…” “Exactly! But if relaxing is what you’re after, then there are sun loungers and salas on the beach and even wooden walkways on the sand so you don’t burn your feet. There is a restaurant on one side of the pool (with surprisingly cheap prices considering the up-market feel of the hotel and Beach Club), which offers everything from traditional Thai dishes to burgers, and a bar on the other side providing an impressive list of specialised cocktails. Both ensure the guests stay hydrated and well fed. “The unique restaurant roof and the bar roof are also available for private hire for birthday parties, wedding receptions, company functions and much more.”

SCL International School

International Education from Pre-school to Secondary Educating the Mind Nurturing the Soul

 Small classes  Individual education plans Fully qualified teachers  A family atmosphere

With these qualities, it’s not hard to see why the children at SCL are achieving so much A warm welcome is extended to anyone who wishes to visit the school

I asked Ran if he felt the guests back at the KC Resort and Over Water Villas would be missing out on this great beach experience. “Not at all. All guests can use our free shuttle bus service to travel to the beach club for a good dose of party fun and entertainment. They can charge everything to their room back at the resort and then catch the shuttle bus back. Why settle for just one resort when you can experience two.” That’s a very good question!

Colleen Setchell

________________________________________________________ For reservations or further information, telephone 0 7742 8088 www.kchotelgroup.com

SCL International School

206/26 Moo 4 Maret, Lamai, Koh Samui, Surat Thani 84310, Thailand Phone: 0 7741 8789 Mobile: 0 810 910 714 Email: emma@sclinternationalschool.com www.sclinternationalschool.com

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 107


108 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


REMEMBER

WHEN…

Souvenirs are meant to remind us of our lovely holiday.

We’ve all done it. Far in the back of a cupboard lies a box of corny “What was I thinking?!” souvenirs from past holidays. These space-wasters are either bought ourselves, or lovingly given by a wellmeaning friend or relative – and of course then we have to haul it from the depths of the cupboard and proudly display it when they come for a visit. Some things feel so right in the heat of the moment, and we end up buying useless junk that’s not a true reminder of our adventures. So how do we avoid feeding that growing pile of white elephant purchases when souvenir shopping on Samui? Well, souvenirs that have some practical purpose are the best reminders of your holiday. Think lovely coconut wood salad servers (coconut is a sustainable wood) and painted decorative rice caddies that make interesting storage containers. Every time you serve a salad you’ll think of the good times you had on holiday. Another great idea is a commissioned painting that can easily be rolled up and framed once home. Walking down the main tourist drags of Chaweng,

Lamai, Nathon and at various attractions, you’ll see artists busy with their creations. Most are working from art books, recreating well-known masterpieces, but they’re also happy to work on commissions such as portraits or from photos. The amount of artistic talent on the island is remarkable. And not only paintings can be bought, but carvings too. If you want something handmade, go to the source. There are many studios where one can watch the artists at work, be it carving or painting. But it’s good to know that by law, one requires a permit to take a Buddha statue out of Thailand. Few retailers will tell you this, as they want the sale. The paperwork is tedious and takes several weeks. Realistically, customs are unlikely to stop you unless it’s an antique piece, but bear in mind that they’ve every right to do so. Keeping with what’s ethically correct, please avoid the framed giant insects that you see at market stands. Truth be told, they didn’t die of natural causes (really), and by purchasing them, you’d be contributing to the problem of reducing numbers of endangered species. The same goes for shell and coral products.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 109


Sticking with art, you may have noticed the giant metal statues created out of scrap metal. Some are aliens, others are robots and there are the frightfully realistic characters from horror movies. You’ll see several shops around the island that sell these statues, one just outside the airport, and others at Big Buddha and in Chaweng – and all will arrange shipping back home, so don’t be put off by the size and weight if this bizarre art is to your taste. Whether you’d want it in your home or not, there’s no denying the craftsmanship that has gone into making these statues. The artists get their materials from the junkyards, carting away truckloads of old car and motorcycle parts. The pieces are cleaned and sorted with nothing thrown away. Working from sketches, the characters are welded together, polished, and varnished with special anti-rust lacquer. Apparently it can take hundreds of hours to complete a large sculpture. Unusual food and drink, unique to Samui or Thailand, is always an interesting talking point and makes a great gift. Why not take home a bottle of Samui’s own rum from the Magic Alambic distillery in Taling Ngam? Thailand’s wines have improved over the last few years, and make a great gift for wine lovers. Those with a sweet tooth would appreciate a packet of the pyramid-shaped candies called kà·lá·mair, made with either coconut (the brown ones) or pandanus (the green ones). These gelatinous local coconut sweets are sold at the ferry terminals and Hin Ta Hin Yai (Grandfather and Grandmother Rocks). A bottle of multipurpose cold pressed pure coconut oil will also make a great gift, and the smell of coconut will be sure to conjure up memories of your tropical holiday.

110 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

More practical souvenirs include rattan, bamboo or wickerwork, ranging from handbags to small décor items and even larger furniture pieces that can be shipped home. And of course, most people are familiar with Thai silks and cottons, which again make great gifts. Silk production in Thailand dates back to ancient times, revived after the Second World War by Jim Thompson, mostly in the North and North-East of Thailand. It’s become a booming export business, with part of the attraction being the mystique surrounding Jim’s disappearance while on holiday in Malaysia, in 1967, never to be seen again. The uneven and slightly rough texture of Thai silk is not a sign of poor quality, but shows that the cloth was made without artificial processing. Choose from scarves, ties, shirts, dresses and cushions. And staying with clothing, you can also have all sorts of clothes tailored to your own measurements. On just about every street you’ll see a tailor offering to make you a custom suit so you stand out from the crowds wearing their Marks and Spencer’s off-the-racks back home. They’ll show you endless catalogues to browse through as well as shelves of fabrics, so you can have your own bespoke suit just as you would like it – and these tailors are pretty good at getting it right too, just allow enough time for a fitting or two before collection. And if you prefer jewellery to clothing, there are several excellent jewellers on the island that can make you a piece, or choose from their displays. Thailand has rich resources of gemstones, including rubies and emeralds, and the country is known to have excellent gold and silversmiths too.


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 111


Finally, a few pointers on what not to buy… That ‘I heart Samui’ or ‘I survived Full Moon Party’ tee shirt will only end up as sleepwear or for washing the car. Then there are the old favourites of beer logo tees or the iconic ‘same same’ and on the back… ‘but different’. Avoid the mass produced ‘original hand made in Thailand’ stands that sell fridge magnets and other corny knickknacks. Turn it over, look underneath and you’re sure to find a small ‘made in China’ print. Will your work colleagues really want a key ring shaped like the phallic Grandfather rock, with the logo, ‘Samui Rocks!’? Of course, some people like and collect such things, then buy all means, buy them. And remember to

112 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

bargain! As a general rule market stands that don’t have fixed prices displayed are open to bargaining. Shops where the merchandise is marked, may offer a discount, but won’t bargain as such. Always bargain with a smile, or you won’t get anywhere. Shop smart and don’t get caught up in the moment when ‘I have to have this’ turns into ‘I can’t believe I bought this!’

Rosanne Turner


Big Buddha Café The signs say ‘Free Sunset at BBC’ and ‘Best Sunset on Samui’. Although no single restaurant has actually had the audacity to charge for viewing one before, there can’t be many places on the island better than BBC Restaurant where you can enjoy a sunset in such comfortable surroundings whilst eating such good food. And if there was such a place that you would ever consider paying to watch a sunset from, it would be there.

The menu’s extensive, to say the least. The fare’s both Thai and International, including favourites from both cuisines. For mains, there’s a large selection of tasty snacks, salads, tried and tested favourites of both Thai and International cuisine and a special Italian food section, including some great pizza and lasagna dishes. And if you’re a fish lover, then you’ll certainly enjoy the salmon steak with basil sauce and side salad.

It’s located right next to the Big Buddha temple complex in Bangrak. The causeway to the temple starts virtually from the restaurant and from parts of the deck you can see the ornate archway itself. And the restaurant’s a prime spot for seeing the landmark statue of Big Buddha itself, floodlit at night, which is just a couple of hundred metres away.

Whatever you order, don’t forget desserts. BBC Restaurant has a select range of them and they’re hard to resist (even if you have just got through a massive main course!). Order the chocolate mousse and it arrives as a mini-mountain topped with whipped cream. Also highly popular is the apple pie (just like mum used to make) with custard or ice-cream.

BBC Restaurant has become an institution in itself and after extensive refurbishment it’s back again. It’s bigger, better and has more choice of seating than before. And it’s one of those very versatile places that offers somewhere perfect to sit for everyone. If you’re on your own with a loved one, you’ll find sitting at one of the beachside tables for two highly romantic. And if you’ve come with your family or a group of friends, you’ll have many options, too, including sitting on the expansive decking at one of the large tables.

The wine list has been expanded to offer a more broad range of southern hemisphere wines. The owners are a Thai - New Zealand family who enjoy the quality of southern wines and meats, as well as using the best that Thailand has to offer.

Meanwhile, on another outside deck, close to the spreading branches of a tamarind tree, there’s a generous-sized patio; again ideal for groups, and for those magnificent views across the sea. And, incidentally, if you’re getting married, BBC’s also an ideal place to hold your reception, not just for the setting, but also for the excellent catering.

BBC is open every day from 9am to late (generally the kitchen is open until 10pm, with a bar snack-menu available after 10pm until closing). For information and reservations, contact: Telephone: 0 7742 5089 or visit their website: www.bbcrestaurant.com


BUYING YOUR SPOT IN PARADISE

Ensuring a safe investment with Panoramic Estate Company.

114 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


What do you get if you combine an experienced property investordeveloper and bestselling author; another developer with over ten years’ experience who’s made his mark in Australia, Thailand and Japan; a lawyer who heads up a leading law firm with offices throughout Asia and a top international award-winning architect whose projects can be viewed all over the world? You get an experienced team whose joint knowledge, experience and talents are a perfect combination to create an exclusive villa development in a prime location on Samui. Rodney Waller and Andrew Walmsley (developers), Christian Glanville (legal services) and David McCormick (architect) have all worked together in the past and they have joined forces again, but this time to create the absolute best of everything they’ve created so far. We were very excited to see a preview of the plans and official launch brochure of these exclusive villas. They certainly will have the ‘wow’ factor. Nestled in amongst palm trees on a hillside these stunning villas are eye-catchingly beautiful. The island of Koh Pha-Ngan and the azure

waters of the Gulf of Siam are spread out before you. Just five minutes from the airport (but without being in the flight path), the villas are also just a short drive from the quaint atmosphere of Fisherman’s Village or bustling Chaweng. Rodney, who is the author of the one of the bestselling books on buying property in Thailand (The Essential Guide - Buying Property in Thailand) is passionate about this new development. He and his team not only have a combined wealth of experience, but because they’ve worked together so many times before (including other villa developments on Samui), they have a synergy. Together they are a magical combination knowing what works and what doesn’t work in a very competitive industry, and pass these advantages onto buyers. For instance, when results are everything, using a tried and tested construction company becomes a key factor for success. The team is always planning with the buyer in mind and is keenly aware that they are building their customers’ dream houses.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 115


But I’m sure you’re dying to hear about these villas? Because natural products and colours have been used, the villas blend beautifully into the hillside, looking like they’ve ‘grown’ there rather than been built there. As many of the palm trees as possible will be left in place to retain that ‘tropical island’ feel. The high quality interiors are designed with an innovative, contemporary feel. All four villa designs have large, airy and open spaces but all still keep a warm, homely atmosphere through carefully selected colours and accessories and strategically placed lighting. The decor inspiration has come from all over the world, neutral colours, soft tones, natural wood and stone have all been used together with splashes of colour which results in a living environment that will appeal to everyone. The high-end fixtures in the villas ensure low maintenance too. There is a definite attention to detail here: a white sand-wash terrace ensures coolness under-foot even in Samui’s bright sunshine, unpolished marble provides a non-slip finish to the pool surround, sleek high end bathroom fittings and accessories, beautifully tiled bathrooms with floor to ceiling glass partitions, even stairs which are constructed ‘outside’ of the main footprint of the house so as not to eat into the living areas. The plot of land was also specially chosen because it makes the most of the morning sun without having it blind you later on in the afternoon (and lowers air-conditioning bills)! When you see the villa designs, your eye will sweep across the unusual, asymmetrical curve of the roof, down past the huge floor-to-ceiling window fronts of the bedrooms, down to the wide open pool deck and terrace, to the sparkling blue private infinity pool and then across the natural stone wall to the road. Nothing about this design is boring. Curves, rounded corners, pillars - the architect has made sure that your eye feasts on every part of this design. David McCormick is renowned for his fresh and innovative designs and this is very obvious looking at the plans. He always takes the topography, surroundings and cultures into consideration when designing and that is why these villas look like they are actually part of the land itself. There is a certain amount of risk in buying preconstruction property; however two of the main advantages are that, firstly, by getting in early you are paying a discounted price with staged payments and the property is usually worth a lot more upon completion. In other words, owners are compensated for waiting for their villas to be built and it also gives owners the opportunity for their own design tweaks so the villas fit personal requirements. 116 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Secondly, if you’re buying the property as a rental investment, your future rental income will be based on the final market value of the finished property, instead of the initial purchase price. These properties are designed with investment returns in mind. The prime location, the optimal size and design (3-4 bedroom private pool villas) and the incredible sea view make these very attractive to potential investors. The villas come with the option of full villa rental management, which includes property management and providing full concierge services to rental guests, from airport transfers to car rental and private chefs. It can be scary buying off-plan because it is sometimes hard to visualize what the finished house will look like but this team is successful because they’ve got the right formula and a good reputation in the industry, which is essential to potential owners and purchasers, especially when they’re parting with their hard-earned cash. As a way of standing behind their promise, the developers of The Ridge give the added guarantee that upon the first payment the land is immediately registered to the purchaser, which is a departure from the norm. They will be then building on the buyer’s land and this takes away the risk and adds security. At the end of the day, these are more than just villas. What will be built here is an experience not just a home. These villas are different, they are eye-catching. Construction starts in July and they are selling fast. They say in life that we more often regret those things which we didn’t do than those which we did do. So don’t live your life in regret.

Colleen Setchell

_______________________________________________________ For reservations or further information, telephone 0 856 920 550 www.theridgesamui.com

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 117


MEOW’S MASTERPIECES

Meow’s handmade dolls are growing in popularity, and becoming sought after collectibles. Khun Wunvilai Punnern (Meow) has been working at Siam Map Company for six years as a graphic designer, compiling the layout of the very magazine you’re holding in your hand. Now she gets a chance to feature in the publication, with what started as a hobby, but has now grown into a booming entrepreneurial business. There’s no doubt that Meow (that’s the Thai word for cat, by the way) is creative. Her creations, hand-sewn dolls of people, monsters and animals, are lovingly made from a colourful assortment of fabrics, felt, buttons and wool, which she sources from fabric houses and craft shops in Bangkok. No two dolls are alike. And why would they be? After all,

118 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

it’s the inventing and transforming the imagination into reality that’s the fun part. But let’s look back at how it all started. Three years ago, Meow made a doll for a friend. Other friends saw it, and all wanted one. So she made more. Encouraged by her friends, Meow saw that people might actually pay money for her little (well, some are actually quite big) dolls. So, the next step was to open a stall at the popular Fisherman’s Village Walking Street in Bophut. Here she sits on a Friday night, outside the Happy Elephant restaurant, selling her dolls to locals and tourists.


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 119


120 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


According to Meow, 80% of her dolls are sold to foreigners, and 20% to Thais. This means that her monsters, animals and little people are slowing finding homes across the globe. And so the cycle starts over. Tourists go home with a ‘Meow’ doll, and their friends see them and want one too. Well, luckily, her dolls can be ordered via their Facebook page. Chat with Meow or message her on Facebook, let her know what creature you want, and what size and colour scheme you’re after and she’ll make one just for you. They make excellent gifts too, and she’s had bulk orders from retailers that plan to on-sell these unique handmade dolls. Meow has expanded her little industry, and in April, she opened a shop, V.R. Dolls (pronounced ‘we are dolls’) at the famous Chatuchak Market in Bangkok. Aside from herself, Meow now has three others making dolls, adding to the imaginative pool of ideas. Khun New works with her on Samui making dolls, and Khun Duan and Khun Aoum work in the Bangkok shop. They all add their own quirky ideas to the range of dolls. The industrious Meow taught herself to sew, and she first scribbles her ideas on paper before taking to the needle. Looking at her workstation, you’ll see a desk pad filled with doodles of all kinds of characters, but cats are her favourite – no surprise there! So often when a hobby turns to an industry, what made it a fun hobby in the first place is lost once the business aspect comes into play. Not so with Meow. As each doll is unique, VR Dolls hasn’t lost its fun appeal. And this is evident when you approach her stall at Fisherman’s Village. Bead and button eyes look up you and come to life, like a version of the movie ‘Toy Story’.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 121


There are no boundaries when it comes to art, so you’ll see spotty cats, stripy dogs and six-eyed sheep. Some are pretty. Some are cute. Some, like the monsters, try to be scary, but end up just adorable. Who could be scared of a fluffy pink monster with a big purple bow? If fact, what better way to let a child overcome a fear of monsters in the dark, than by having their very own one to cuddle at night! VR Dolls range in size, from key rings – luggage space is no excuse for not buying one – to others as big as a toddler. The range also includes fridge magnets and bags, which make interesting gifts with a story to tell, rather than mass-produced run-of-the-mill souvenirs. And the dolls are well priced too, ranging from only 100 baht for the key rings and magnets to 500 baht for the large dolls. So if you’re looking for an unusual gift for a little person in your life, it’s worth popping down to Meow’s stall on a festive Friday night, or if you’re in Bangkok at the buzzing Chatuchak Market. In fact, there’s no age limit – most anyone would enjoy one of her creations that seem to ooze a sense of ‘feel good’ from their beady little eyes.

Rosanne Turner

_______________________________________________ For more information visit www.facebook.com/vrdolls. handmade

122 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


ENJOY THE VIEW

Bea

ch A

FEEL THE QUALITY

LIVE THE LIFESTYLE

cce

ss Pu

bli

cR

oad

PLOT 1 (=SOLD)

2

PLOT 5

PL OT

PLOT 6

(=RESERVED)

PLOT 3

T4

Under Construction (=RESERVED)

B Aceach ces s

PLO

T 16

5 T1 PLO

3 T1

14 PL OT

OT 12 PL

Sea

PLO

OT 11

9

10

PL

PL

OT

RE

OT

8 ) OT VED PL SER

(=

PL

E

PLO

7 OT ED) PL SERV

(=R

EXCLUSIVE BEACHFRONT AND SEA VIEW LAND, TOTALLY 16 PLOTS, 11 PLOTS REMAINING FOR SALE

19 SEA VIEW PLOTS FOR SALE (11 SOLD), 5 BEDROOM VILLA & SEPARATE GUEST VILLA FOR RENT OR SALE

PLOT 3

PLOT 2

PLOT 1

Completed Villa

o

LUXURIOUS 6 BEDROOM MAIN VILLA WITH 360 SEAVIEWS AND SEPARATE GUEST VILLA FOR RENT OR SALE & 1 PLOT FOR SALE SAMUI ROYAL HOLDINGS

Plai Laem Soi 8, Choeng Mon Beach, Koh Samui, Thailand Contact: Mr. Yo Tel: 081 537 3088 sales@naraikiri.com, yochaweng@hotmail.com www.naraikiri.com, www.samui-ultimate-samui.com

SKYLINE RESIDENCES

NARAI KIRI RESIDENCES

KOH SAMUI www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

l 123


124 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


STAND OUT FROM

THE CROWD Express your individuality with fashions from Psylo

Remember when you were young? Ok, fair enough, for some of us that was a little longer ago than we care to remember. But bear with me for a second. When you were young, if you were ‘different’, you were teased. If you didn’t have what everyone else had, you were uncool, nerdy or just a freak. When you grew older, things didn’t change much - everyone had the latest gadget, everyone had a smart phone; everyone had a flat screen TV. There is a real need in today’s society to ‘follow’ the crowd. Society says you are cool if you do what it says. Standing out makes you weird or different. But Psylo have taken that concept, twisted it around and made it fashionable. They aren’t just a clothes shop; they are a lifestyle concept and a way of life. They are encouraging everyone to stand out, to be individual and to be unique. They are rebelling against society dictating how we should all dress and are telling us it’s okay not only to be different, but that it’s also fashionable.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 125


Individuality is described as “the state or quality of being an individual; particularly of being a person separate from other persons and possessing his or her own needs or goals.” This is so rare in today’s ‘sheep’ culture where everyone seems to feel compelled to do the same thing. The owners of Psylo have travelled extensively, from exploring Amazon jungles and trekking through the Himalayas, to visiting various cities around the world. They slowly came to realise that they needed stylish clothes that were fun, unique and edgy, but were also comfortable for everyday wear and had a stylish, home-worn feel. So, in 1999, Psylo was born. In 2006 they opened their first store in Bali, followed by their second (and so far biggest) store, in 2007, in London and finally on Samui in 2011. We spoke to Joel, the owner and manager of the Samui branch, and he took great pride in telling us all about their various clothing ranges. All items can be purchased online and they update the lines twice a year. You’ll find the Spring/Summer range currently on display but soon the Autumn/Winter range will appear and tempt a whole new influx of customers. 126 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Your One Stop Chill Spot

www.impiana.com 91/2-3 Moo 3, Chaweng Noi Beach, Koh Samui, Suratthani 84320 Thailand Tel: 66 (0) 77 448994

Fax: 66 (0) 77 448999

Email: info.kohsamui@impiana.com

Nail Design INSPIRED ON YOUR NAIL

Acrylic Nails - Gel Extensions Natural Nail Treatment - Waxing - Massage We offer only the best nail care products and services.

The key to the Psylo look is originality and, over time, their clothes have developed into a fusion of urban street wear, with a strong underground and ethnic tribal influence and a dash of punk. Psylo style is influenced by tattoos, primal body art and sacred symbolisms all combined with a modern manifestation of fashion. The majority of the items are made from natural materials such as cotton, rayon modal or silk. They are very keen on recycling, and even create designs to use their leftover fabrics or materials. Dyes that aren’t water based are passed through a filtration system before being disposed of. Clearly they care for the environment too. Their designs are all created in Bali by a husband and wife team who feel they get their inspiration not only from their travelling, but from Bali itself. The Indonesian people are known to be very creative and surround themselves with art and colour. All clothing goes through stringent quality controls to ensure that each piece is absolutely perfect. The sewing is all done by a team working out of the Bali factory, and even all the interesting prints and patterns you see on the clothes, are screen printed by hand. This is a fashion company, but they don’t just deal in fashion, they design it, create it, personalise it and sell it. You won’t find anything mass produced here.

Contact: 080 522 7700, 077 426 993 Location: Samui Ring Road, Bophut next to Peace Resort www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 127


128 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Often when we shop for clothes, we’re quick to point out how the hem isn’t straight or a button that is perhaps slightly off centre. We immediately deem it to be faulty because after all, things are meant to be perfect, aren’t they? But who’s to say that just because the button is off centre, or the hem is crooked or that the trousers’ zip runs diagonally, that the item isn’t perfect? Psylo loves teasing society’s fashion rules. Walking around their shop, you’ll see studded wrist bands, men’s shirts with uneven printing, skewed zips and rugged edges. You’ll see flaps and straps, studs and slits. Jackets with metal rods in the collars so that you can fold it as you like it and look as hip or as laid back as you want. Some of the women’s dresses have vertical cuts or criss-cross straps on the back showing just enough of the back to be sensual but not enough to cross that ever fine line between cheap and elegant. Some wrap-around skirts have layered hem lengths and shirts have tassels hanging from the elbows. Lace detail in shirts, tunic tops with asymmetric lengths, external stitching, studs, odd buttons and diagonal zips. Their clothes really do have to be seen to be appreciated. The designs are intriguing and so very different. Their international customer base is varied and during our interview, a regular customer from Australia was stocking up her wardrobe and already had several items of clothing set aside for purchase. Apparently she comes back every year. Sadly one item she wanted was sold out but she didn’t seem at all worried. “Don’t worry, I’ll order it online.” It really is that easy. When I asked how many of the winter items displayed were sold on Samui, Joel explained that people shop here to take back to their home country. That makes sense, because you won’t catch me wearing a winter coat on Samui just to be different! So step out of your comfort zone and get yourself down to Psylo on Chaweng Beach Road to discover your individuality. You’ll be surprised how many things catch your eye.

Colleen Setchell

__________________________________________ For further information, telephone 0 7725 6157, 0 879 288 748. www.psylofashion.com

Welcome to Sa-ard’s Watersports Center on Koh Samui. Where everyday can be an aquatic adventure – above and below the crystal clear blue waters of the Gulf of Thailand. Join us and discover what r eally makes these islands so very special. Our brand new catamaran Fountaine Pajot Belize 43 “Kindred Spirit” can comfortably take 15 people on a day trip and sleep 6 people on over-night excursions. The starboard hull has a double stateroom with ensuite bathroom and living area. There are also two double state rooms in the port hull with a shared bathroom. You’ll also find a large galley and a living area with CD/DVD player and a 28 inch colour TV. All the cabins and living areas are fully air-conditioned. Sa-ard’s Watersports Center also offers Private Speedboat tours to the beaches and snorkeling destinations of the surrounding islands. Manager and Skipper is Sa-ard, one of Thailand’s most celebrated windsurfers. He took part in the Olympics 1984 in Los Angeles and 1992 in Barcelona, was a long time member of the Thai National Windsurfing Team, has been Asian Champion and 5 times Gold Medal Winner in the South East Asian Games. You simply could not be in better hands!

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 129


130 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


LAYING IT BACK

Exploring the day and night delights of Big Buddha and Bangrak.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 131


132 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


There’s Chaweng and there’s Lamai. And, not all that long ago, that was it for Samui. Of course there’s Nathon too but, no matter however many big banks it might have, there’s only three streets! But times change, and as Chaweng has become busier and more expensive, so other areas have begun to grow. It’s a kind of ‘swings and roundabouts’ thing – it’s cheaper to set up somewhere less popular, but then there’s less people and custom there, too. And that’s the way it used to be with Bangrak – apart from a little bit of a blip in Choeng Mon, really this is the nearest and next bit of coastline away from Chaweng. But today Bangrak is thriving and very much on the up. If you’ve already experienced the wonders of modern-day Chaweng then, take it on good authority, Bangrak is like Chaweng used to be about 15 years ago. There are ‘gaps’! There are lots of places where you can not only see the sea, but walk freely onto the beach. But, as with Chaweng, those spaces are slowly being filled. And it’s a sad but inevitable conclusion that in another ten years there’ll no doubt be end-to-end development, and those care-free strolls to the beach will have become a thing of the past. But not yet. If you take a look at the maps of the north coast of the island, you may find that Bangrak is not actually marked down on all of them. It’s just a touch confusing, as nearly all the areas on Samui correspond to a bay or a beach of the same name – Chaweng, Maenam, Bang Po and so on. One of the few exceptions here is Bophut Beach. Most maps show it stretching from the Big Buddha temple to Fisherman’s Village: if not all the way, then certainly from the side-road that runs to the airport. And so, for the purposes of this article I’m going to look at what lies on this coast between the two equally popular tourists spots of Big Buddha and Fisherman’s Village. www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 133


I’m not going to go into detail about the landmark of The Big Buddha and the attached temple. Many think that this has become a little too commercial of late, with its cafes and gift and souvenir shops. In fact the neighbouring temple of Plai Laem boasts an equally-impressive pure white 18-armed statue of The Buddha, and it’s all much more serene. But head westwards on the coast road, away from Big Buddha, in the direction of Bophut. There’s not much to be seen until you suddenly find yourself at a busy junction, with the airport signposted to the left. This little spot displays one of the charming intrigues of our island: that you can often see the old and the new – the rickety and rustic and the spick and span – jumbled up together next to each other. Right on the edge of this junction, on the beach side, is the area’s old fish market, with its ramshackle canvas and tin roofs and awnings, looking like a do-it-yourself job thrown together from farmyard scraps. And right across from it is the gleaming new hotel and mini-mall that goes by the curious name of ‘Plaza the Green’. This seems to be vying for a Samui Slickness award with the new Seatran Discovery ferry pier that’s right across from it, along with the only semi-circular elevated Family Mart on the island! The Seatran pier people have really managed to stretch the boundaries of semantics with their Wednesday ‘Food & Drink Walking Street – Music’ err . . . event, that’s held in the courtyard in front of the pier. It seems than an actual street to walk along isn’t a requirement any more. At this point, firsttime visitors will probably be squeaking with excitement, anticipating an unfolding expanse of eateries and boutiques. There are a couple of lively bars next door to the pier – but that’s it. For another kilometre, anyway, there’s a big gap until you see the Samui Mermaid Resort. Which is a good time for a gap in my narrative, too. I could carry on by working my way along the coast and pointing out the highlights as we go. But let’s condense it down a bit. This whole area is a gastronome’s paradise, a bar-hopper’s delight and a sun-worshipper’s dream. There are several boat and yacht charter companies (Oceans Elite and Sa-ard’s Watersport Centre). Quality accommodation begins at around 500 baht (with the Samui Mermaid Resort), but head off up a side-street and you’ll still find thatched huts for much less. There are several sports pubs and the only (Aussie owned!) rugby-based sports pub (The Office) in the whole region. There are probably 20 or so very lively girlie-type bars. There are several excellent Thai seafood restaurants, a superb gastro-veggie eatery (‘Amala’ at Prana Resort) at least five 4-to 5-star gourmet restaurants (look out for Oceans 11, close to the Ghost Road), with cuisine from England, Germany Switzerland, France, India and Italy. Also, right in the middle, there’s that legendary ‘Ghost Road’ (which, incidentally is now undergoing its own satellite ribbon development). And you’ll come across all of this in a long ribbon that runs unbroken on either side of the road over a distance of about three kilometres. And then the gaps begin to appear again, with one or two more great beachside restaurants here and there (Orgasmic, for example) before you get to the no-man’s land that emerges after the new development of Replay Condos and the downhill bend towards Fisherman’s Village. This is still Bophut Beach – all of it is – in theory, anyway. But by this point on the coast most of the residents consider themselves as being Bophut-ians. Right at the moment there’s a natural end to what folks thing of as Bangrak – it finishes when there’s no more buildings! No doubt, as the years come to pass and progress keeps on marching, as with Chaweng, all the gaps will be filled-in, and some townplanner in a far-away office will clearly draw a line that marks the limits of ‘Bangrak’. But until that time, make the most of it. It’s the most fun you can have outside of Chaweng, the taxis in these parts are almost civilised and right now it’s probably the most laid-back part of our island!

Rob De Wet

134 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Dream Holiday under Palms Only a 35 minutes drive from Koh Samui’s small scenic airport, close to the island´s picturesque little town Nathon and near the Public hospital this prestigious address is one of the best known secrets of the island. Located on Santi Beach the Siam Residence Deluxe is nestled in tropical gardens. Created to provide the very best of Thai hospitality, this small luxury retreat incorporates luxurious accommodations, attentive service and excellent cuisine in an atmosphere of calm and seclusion. The perfect destination for an unforgettable holiday ‐ a place to return to …

1 or 2 bedroom luxury villas, separate living room, marble bath, two toilets, party second open air bath, familiy villas (130 m2!). Tropical garden, designer‐pool, german‐speaking management, Restaurant, Sala directly at the beach!

Enjoy your lunch or spectacular sunset dinner at the open air Pavilion restaurant directly at the beach overlooking the sea and the intimate atmosphere of a small luxury villa resort. Authentic Thai and international cuisine and wines. Join us for a relaxed and unforgetable dining experience! Open daily from 7.00 a.m. to 10.00 p.m. (ask for free pick‐up service)

Santi Beach – Lipanoi Tel: 077‐420008 – Fax: 077‐420009 e‐mail: samui@siamresidence.com www.siamresidence.com www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 135


136 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


HIDDEN GEMS

Heading off the beaten track to see what The Siam Residence has to offer. Samui is full of surprises. For a visitor, it must sometimes get quite confusing. We’re only a little island. But once you begin to explore, things seem to get bigger. Even when you’ve been here for years, there’s always something new. A rustic village that time has passed by, an unknown waterfall, a viewpoint, another little cove or bay, a great beach restaurant you never knew was there. Or a very chic resort, top-notch, modern and friendly. Small and boutique, family-owned. Secluded and elegant with acres of scrubbed white sand. Luxury accommodation that’s on a par with the 5-star places. A great restaurant under the stars. I don’t suppose there are many like this – hidden gems are hard to find. But there’s one just south of Nathon on the fringe of Lipa Noi. And its name is The Siam Residence. This small boutique resort is no newcomer to the scene, but that only adds to its pedigree. The quality of the service here has always been first class – this made an impression when I first came here 12 years ago. But what also impressed me this time around was the standard of contemporary luxury that’s everywhere. From the villas to the restaurant to the massage room on the edge of beach: this is on a level with some of the best resorts anywhere. “We’ve always taken a pride in consistency,” the resort’s manager explained to me. “Training and maintaining a friendly and responsible staff. Keeping up the quality of the resort’s structure and the contemporary décor of the villas. The quality and value of the restaurant’s cuisine. We’re in an age of instant communication and in a competitive arena. And everyone here, myself included, has to interact professionally and very personally with our guests. And that includes day visitors as well as those who are staying with us – everyone is warmly welcomed here.” And that’s a lesson from which more than a few other resorts can benefit. I have to say that I’ve always found it a little strange when an out-of-town resort is reluctant to provide a pick-up service for potential visitors. But not so at The Siam Residence. Anyone who wishes to pop over for the day (or evening for that matter) can phone and be collected and then returned to their resort. There’s no getting lost looking for somewhere you’ve read about. It’s one thing for a resort’s press officer to philosophise about how much the guests are valued. It’s quite another thing to have this working on a practical level right throughout the fabric of the place. But this is something that’s very much in evidence here.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 137


can be entered from either bedroom, as well as from the hall. This bathroom is a work of art in itself: an outside and well-screened Balinese-style shower and Jacuzzi sit alongside another interconnected inner area, mirrored and tiled, with another shower and clawfoot bathtub. It’s quite spectacular. There are three flat-screen TVs – in the bedrooms and living area, plus an entertainment centre – and, as you might imagine, the quality of the furnishings and fitting is modern, sumptuous and very, very comfortable throughout. Needless to say, there is full air-conditioning. I can actually imagine coming inside after a few baking hours on the beach and yelling aloud with joy at the cool and cosy relief. These villas are delightful. And the same holds true for the smaller one-bedroom villas, although 80 square metres is hardly tiny! They’re twins of the family villas, with all the same levels of sophistication and comfort. This is not a big resort. And that’s where it scores. It’s personal. And you’ll thus be accorded the genuinely friendly interaction that usually only long-term repeat visitors can enjoy. Of course, you’ll have ample opportunity to experience this if you’re fortunate enough to be actually staying here. The villas are something of a joy to behold. Private, neat, and spruce (in fact they all look as if they’re new) the tastefullystuccoed exteriors reveal little of the cool refinement within. There are three big two-bedroom family villas, each of which runs to 130 square metres overall. The main floors are quarry slate tiles but switch to a rich wood parquet in the bedrooms. The layout is cleverly centred around the huge bathroom, which 138 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

The restaurant is unusual in that the layout is two connected glass octagons. Plus, in the evenings, there are tables outside on the lawned terrace overlooking the sand. The menu is as impressive as everything else here, in both the quality and in its very realistic pricing; the most expensive dish, the big mixed grill, being just 295 baht. There’s a full Thai menu. Then there are all day breakfasts, soups, salads, pasta dishes, mixed grills and barbecue dishes – plus the freshest of fresh seafood, as the local market is just three minutes up the road!


B Smart B Smart Sys. Co., LTD has been providing top level security solutions, lighting control systems, CCTV systems, access control, fire alarms and WiFi solutions since 1999. B Smart has quickly earned the reputation for being one of the most progressive and innovative system integrators in Thailand. Along with high quality products and a very knowledgeable work force, you can be confident that B Smart Sys. Co., LTD will meet and exceed your expectations.

Hotline: 0 815 631 685 Email: bsmartsys@gmail.com For Taxi: ร้านตั้งอยู่ตรงข้ามโรงแรมนภาใส แม่น้ำ�

Captain Kirk First floor restaurant in a central location on Chaweng Beach Road. Huge portions and reasonable prices make it a very popular choice. Highly recommended are both the Plate of Mixed Grill Seafood and the Australian Beef Tenderloin. Desserts are equally tasty and there’s a good selection of value-for-money wine to complete the dining experience.

Tel.: 0 812 705 376 Email: captainkirksamui@hotmail.com For Taxi: ร้านตั้งอยู่ชั้นสองของตึก ติดกับพิซซ่าฮัท

ถนนเลียบหาดเฉวง เฉวงเซ็นเตอร์

Villa Bianca RISTORANTE ”EXCLUSIVE” ITALIANO Tastefully designed, and located at the beach, Villa Bianca features lobster specialties, and other superb cuisine prepared by its own Italian Chef. Excellent wines and French champagne complement all dishes. A unique experience that leaves diners wishing to return for more. Villa Bianca is nestled in amongst the converted old Chinese shop-houses overlooking the water in Fisherman’s Village.

Tel.: 0 7724 5041 Email: curraglass@yahoo.com For Taxi: ร้านตั้งอยู่ที่ถนนหาดบ่อผุด

Asia Travel

Having spent an enjoyable afternoon at The Siam Residence, I now know exactly what I’m going to do on my next weekend off. I’m going to phone the resort and ask for a pick-up in the mid-afternoon. I’m going to chill with a book by the pool for an hour or so, then shift to the shade under one of the huge beachside trees. And then take a slow massage, overlooking the sea. I’ll let the restaurant know I want rock lobster and crab. I’m going to cash-in on the happy hour as the sun begins to set and maybe even get a bit mellow on the two-for-one cocktails. I’m going to slowly enjoy my beachside dinner, and maybe go and recline on a sunbed to linger over my dessert and another cocktail or two. And when they come to wake me up, everyone will be smiling. The Thai staff, because of the silly sleeping guest on the beach, and I’ll be smiling because I’m amongst all these pleasant people. Plus the fact that at The Siam Residence there’s already a mini bus, engine running, waiting to take me back. This resort is a gem, indeed!

Asia Travel is the most popular travel agency on Koh Samui. Established 15 years ago, they are well known to provide updated travel information reasonably priced for all international and domestic needs. Their second to none consultancy service will help you with all aspects of long or short stay requirements such as visa, work permit or company registration and finances. Asia Travel is well known for their quality services as mentioned in The Lonely Planet. Tel.: 0 7723 6120, 0 7742 1342 Fax: 0 7742 1185 Email: asia_int@samart.co.th For Taxi: ร้านตั้งอยู่ที่ถนนหน้าทอน

Simply the best

Brite Smile The Original BriteSmile Centre from Hollywood’s Professional Teeth Whitening. . One Hour . One Visit . One Dazzling Smile Offering other new services: Painless dentistry, depigmentation with laser and dental implants, as well as a wide range of dental hygiene and care.

Rob De Wet

______________________________________________________ For reservations or further information, telephone 0 7742 0008. www.siamresidence.com

Bangkok Samui Dental Clinic Open daily from 9:oo - 20.00 Tel : 0 7742 9500 www.DentalSamui.com

Tel.: 0 7742 9500 Website: www.DentalSamui.com For Taxi: ร้านตั้งอยู่ในโรงพยาบาลกรุงเทพ

ถนนรอบเกาะ เฉวง

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 139


140 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


FOR THE LOVE OF FASHION

Personalised designs with a splash of colour at ‘Nicol B’. Nikky has always been fascinated with fashion. From a very early age she idolised her mum’s sense of ’70s style. She started sewing and making clothes for her family at the age of 12, and went on to study at the prestigious London College of Fashion where she qualified with a BA in Fashion Design & Product Development. Her career, after she left college, spanned everything from sales assistant, merchandiser, buyer, stylist and image consultant. It was during her time as an image consultant that she had her first thoughts about fashion not always catering for individual body shapes.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 141


“COLOURING PENCILS” SS13 Collection inspired by David Bowie

But it was early days yet, and with her passion for design growing, she and her husband, Colin, moved from their hometown in London and travelled to India, inspired by the colours and fabrics. India is a hub for garment manufacturing, and it was in Goa that she and Colin started their journey into the world of fashion by opening their first retail store. They sold jewellery, clothing and accessories and, much to their surprise, within the first three months everything sold out. Seeing an opportunity, Nikky purchased exclusive silk sarees and began transforming them into one-off designer pieces. ‘Nikky Noodles LONDON’ was born. After four years, they decided to move on and Thailand blipped onto the radar. Fashion in Thailand at the time was predominantly copies of popular brands and labels. The designs weren’t sustainable to wear year in year out, so it was the perfect place for Nikky to introduce her personalised designs. She and Colin settled on Koh Tao, where they obtained the perfect grounding for running a business in Thailand. In 2011, they moved to Koh Samui and found a great location in the heart of Fisherman’s Village. The boutique is called Nicol ‘B’ and can be found near the eastern entrance to the village.

142 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Designer: Nikky Noodles Photography: Olga Vertova Model: Emily Scarlett Ochs Hair: Natalie Hagues Make Up & Styling: Nikky Noodles Photo Shoot Location: Fishermans Village

The first thing you notice when you approach the boutique is the white picket fence and garden with a striking shop window displaying a fantastic mix of colour. You won’t find any neutral colours here - only vibrant, bright colours in combinations that would both shock and surprise you. The fabric that Nikky uses is not often used in the fashion industry because it is notoriously difficult to cut, but with her experience she feels comfortable working with it and knows it is a flattering fabric on any woman’s figure. The fabric is a Japanese invention and is 15% silk, 85% rayon, completely machine washable and allows your skin to breath (which is great for the warm climate here in Thailand). The absolute favourite attribute - it doesn’t need ironing. Nikky’s designs are classic yet simple, but that means they never date. The whole look can be changed simply by wearing different shoes, belts or accessories. Dress it up for a cocktail evening or dinner party with some beautiful accessories (shoes, bags and silver jewellery from Italy are also sold in Nikky’s boutique).

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 143


Alternatively, dress it down for a simple stroll through Fisherman’s Market on a Friday night. Another dress turns easily into a kaftan, and another dress which has an adjustable length, allows you to move easily from business meeting to night out. It is fashion that is 100% dedicated to fit you beautifully, accentuating your figure’s good aspects and at surprisingly reasonable prices. But the style stands out and not only are you getting personalised designs, but you’re often getting two outfits for the price of one. Great value for money! Nikky is aware that her designs need to appeal to different age groups. Her dresses can come in shorter or longer lengths to suit your preference. She alters her designs to cater for the fuller figure by drawing attention away from features that clients don’t want to show. Nikky believes that all women, whatever shape or size, have the right to look and feel beautiful. Larger sizes can also benefit from fashion. How different from the skinny models and seemingly cut-throat business of fashion around the world today. Any adjustments are reproduced for you in just 24 hours - now that’s what I call a 144 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

personalised service. Nikky also offers a special service where you can choose a design from one of her collections and you have up to 20 colours to choose from, a unique service from your normal fashion designer. Her current collection is called ‘Colouring Pencils’ and is inspired, again, by colour. You can’t help but smile walking around the boutique. You simply feel happy. The purples, yellows, reds, pinks, greens, oranges and all combinations thereof make you feel as if, well, you’ve stepped into a box of colouring pencils. The craftsmanship that Nikky puts into this passion is second to none. From the initial design process, to the drafting of a pattern, to the finished garment hitting the shop floor, it’s evident from the moment you enter this vibrant boutique. It’s been Nikky’s mission in life to be different, to be an individual, to create an identity that lets her choose what trends and rules she wants to follow or break. To learn and grow and be true to her fashion self. Who is she as a clothes designer? She calls herself an accessories junkie and this is where she gets her inspiration. Her pieces are full of colour and print, some harmonious and some clashing. She works with a variety of materials such


as silks, chiffons and leather. Her signature style is flirty and energetic, impeccably crafted and figure flattering. Her designs are eye-catching pieces for the haute-hippie. Everything is designed and produced personally by Nikky, who also tries everything on herself. She uses her knowledge and experience to then ‘tweak’ the design for other sizes, shapes and styles. She never produces more than five of each design, so you’ll avoid the embarrassment of bumping into someone in the street wearing the exact same outfit! Nikki has also added bridesmaid and wedding dresses to her pieces, so what are you waiting for? Get yourself down to Fisherman’s Village, visit Nicol ‘B’ and surround yourself with colour.

Colleen Setchell

_______________________________________________ For further information, telephone Nikky 0 847 716 948

Enjoy the beauty of the underwater world the easy way. Seawalking is the newest and most innovative attraction to hit Koh Tao. It is the safest underwater adventure and fun for all the family Just stroll along the seabed in 10 feet of crystal clear water and observe the sea life as it swims around you. You need no lessons or swimming ability. For more information contact Tel: 0901 650411 www.underseawalking.com Chalok Bay, Koh Tao.

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 145


Beach hotel fisherman's village sale/rent

PROPERTY CLASSIFIEDS

Boutique hotel with 6 large rooms available for rent starting March 2013. Year to year lease. Established market. Furnished, modern, all ocean front rooms, two Lanais ocean/street view. Big kitchen, large freezer. Best location in village direct in center of action. Rent with option to buy. Rent 1.2-million per year paid upfront. This is a great investment up to 300% return Rent with option to buy the apartments. Price 39 million. Outright freehold, 30% down. Owner financing available. For virtual tour of rooms www.Youtube.Com/84320 Website: www.Beachfrontapartment.Blog.Com Information: mr-zia@hotmail.com Tel: 0.850.438.122

Guesthouse for Sale - Chaweng

Villa for Rent/Sale - Yupa Villa 1

Guesthouse for sale with freehold land in Soi Green Mango. 5-storey building with 20 recently renovated rooms. Irish Pub and restaurant on ground floor with 4 pool tables and wide screen projector for sporting events. Chanote land title with limited company.

5 fully furnished bedrooms with air-con throughout. All bedrooms ensuite, one with jacuzzi. Living area fully furnished with TV and internet. Thai/Western kitchen. Swimming pool, remote control gate, security camera around house, safety box, parking area, garden.

Contact: 0 818 921 990 Email: info@mobydick-guesthouse.com

Tel: 0 818 917 912, 0 897 636 032 E-mail: cr@chawengbayviewsamuiresort.com www.chawengbayviewsamuiresort.com

House for Sale - Bang Por

Villa for Rent/Sale - Yupa Villa 2

Thai style house located in peaceful residental area of Bang Por. Family home with 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, spacious living room and kitchen area. Private swimming pool and large mature garden. Drive in garage and storage area under the house. Private sale by owner.

3 fully furnished bedrooms with air-con throughout. All bedrooms ensuite, one with jacuzzi. Living area fully furnished with TV and internet. Thai kitchen. Swimming pool, remote control gate, security camera around house, safety box, parking area, garden.

Price: 12,000,000 Baht Land title: Chanote Land: 1,000 m2 House: 200 m2

Tel: 0 818 917 912, 0 897 636 032 E-mail: cr@chawengbayviewsamuiresort.com www.chawengbayviewsamuiresort.com

Contact: 0 818 921 990 E-mail: tuulakohsamui@hotmail.com

Private real estate 180-Degree views

with

incredible

Shophouse for Rent - Chaweng

The actual view from this house is the picture above. This 4-bedroom house has been built according to European standards on 972 sqm. It is centrally located near Nathon and only 500 metres from the main road in a small, warm and tidy community. Priced very competitively, this house is ideal for couples or young families ready to live in paradise. Price: 8 Million THB only

2 unit shophouse for rent in Soi Colibri, opposite Centara Grand. 2 floors (each floor appx. 8 x 14 meters). Ground floor comprises of an unfurnished restaurant. 2nd floor comprises of 2 unfurnished rooms/apartments (no kitchen).

Tel: 0 819 709 632 Email: asiatravel_international@yahoo.com

Contact Khun Na: 0892914747 (English and Thai)

Price: 40.000 Baht / month, paid every 6 months in advance. (no deposit or key money).

Chaweng - Bar for Rent / Sale

Shophouse for Sale - Chaweng

Bar for rent in Soi Colibri, opposite Centara Samui Resort. Includes apartment on 1st floor with 2 ensuite bedrooms and seperate access. Price for rent : 29,000 Baht per month 3 months deposit No key money Price for sale: 4.9 million Baht

2 unit shophouse for sale in Soi Colibri, opposite Centara Grand. 3 floors (each floor appx. 8 x 14 meters). Ground floor comprises of an unfurnished restaurant. 2nd floor comprises of 2 unfurnished rooms/apartments (no kitchen). 3rd floor comprises of one large luxury apartment with jacuzzi, western kitchen etc. 3rd floor apartment has separate entrance.

Contact Khun Na: 0892914747 (English and Thai)

Price: 15,900,000 Baht Contact Khun Na: 0892914747 (English and Thai)

Chaweng - Shophouse for Sale Shophouse for sale in Soi Colibri, opposite Centara Samui Resort. Ground floor ideal for office space, retail shop or small bar/restaurant. Apartment on 1st floor with 2 ensuite bedrooms and seperate access. Price:

4 million Baht

Contact:

Graeme 0 860 193 166

Profitable Established Business for Sale 18 hole, concrete tracked, mini golf course. Member of the World Mini Golf Federation (one of only 2 in Thailand). 3020 m2 of land including 2 storey house with foreign ownership. 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and 2 extra apartments. Sale includes well established, profitable Thai Limited Company. Location: Near Choeng Mon Price: 1,300,000 Euro Contact:

146 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com

Jojo, 0 817 879 148 www.minigolfsamui.com


Chaweng Whispering Palms Condominium Suites for Rent / Sale

Samujana Villa 17

1-2 bedroom apartments, 51 sqm - 117 sqm. Fully furnished, TV, DVD, fully fitted kitchen, fridge, microwave. Free Wi-Fi Internet, Telephone, CCTV, 24 hour security. Tropical landscaping, 2 Swimming Pools, Sauna/Steam, Fitness. Free shuttle Service. Located in Chaweng (near Tesco Lotus). Rent from 15,000 baht monthly (yearly contract), sale from 2.8 million baht.

Combine nature and luxury at this spectacular, contemporary residence built right into the Samui hillside. Situated just ten minutes from the island's airport, Samujana 17 crowns a brand new development on Koh Samui's northwest coast and offers the ultimate in secluded luxury living. The award winning design features flat, planted roofs, open-plan living spaces with natural rock features and tropical landscaping.

Contact: Steve: 081 452 5895, Pop: 081 832 5895 Website: www.samui-condo.com, www.dsdsamui.com Email: info@dsdsamui.com

Price: US$1,800,000 Tel: 0 811 901 540 Email: narisa@punrai.com Website: www.punrai.com

LH0012: Bangmakham 2 Bedroom House Located in the up and coming area of Bang Makham. Two double bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms, infinity pool, high specification Kitchen and fittings throughout. Good off street parking and easy access to the beach, less than a kilometre away. Stunning sea & sunset views. Land area 1,120 sqm, Chanote Title. Priced to sell at 15.8m Thai Baht. Tel: Email: Website:

0 811 901 540 narisa@punrai.com www.punrai.com

Bophut - Whispering Palms Private Pool Villa House for rent/sale 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms with shower and bath tub. Living room with furniture, TV, DVD and UBC. Fully fitted kitchen. A/C throughout. ADSL, telephone line. Private swimming pool. 24 hour security & CCTV. Land size 440 sqm, floor size: 240 sqm. Locatied in Bophut (near Sunday Resort). Rent from 55,000 baht per month (yearly contract), sale 9.7 million baht.

Contact: Steve 081 452 5895, Pop 081 832 5895 Website: www.dsdsamui.com Email: info@dsdsamui.com

RH0015: Samujana Villa 19

Chaweng – Holiday Villa Houses for rent/sale

Located in the desirable Choeng Mon area overlooking Chaweng Bay & Koh Matlang is the up market Samujana Estate. Villa 19 has 4 double bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms, massive infinity edge swimming pool, great in door outdoor flow for dining and living, fully equipped Media room with Sono’s surround sound system indoors and out. Fully specified Kitchen, Jacuzzi, BBQ area, ample pool deck space and fully furnished. On-site staff, maid quarters. The estate has a doubles Tennis court, full CCTV and manned security patrols and only a stone’s throw to the beach. Just move in! Priced well at USD2.5m.

2 storey villas with 2/3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms with shower and bath tub. Living room with furniture, TV & DVD, fully fitted kitchen. 4 A/C’s. ADSL, CCTV and 24 hour security. Landscaped garden with swimming pool, pavilion and waterfall. Private jacuzzi and whirlpool. Located in Chaweng (near Tesco Lotus). Rent from 25,000 baht per month (yearly contract), sale: 4.5 million baht. Contact: Steve 081 452 5895, Pop 081 832 5895 Website: www.dsdsamui.com Email: info@dsdsamui.com

Tel: 0 811 901 540 Email: narisa@punrai.com Website: www.punrai.com

Samujana Villa 11 A contemporary design home with 3/4 bedrooms, with stunning sea views across Koh Samui's east coast toward Chaweng Bay. Stylish & unique this beautiful villa is a highly specified build, residential project in the desirable Choeng Mon area, just 10 minutes from Chaweng. Sale US$1.5 million, rent from US$250 / night Tel: Email: Website:

0 811 901 540 narisa@punrai.com www.punrai.com

Bophut - Whispering Palms Resort Houses for rent/sale (2 BR) 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms with shower and bath tub. Living room with furniture, TV, DVD and cable. Fully fitted kitchen. 3 A/C's. ADSL, telephone line. Communal swimming pool, sauna and steam room. 24 hour security & CCTV. Located in Bophut (near Sunday Resort). Rent from 25,000 baht per month (yearly contract), sale: 4.2 million baht Contact: Steve 081 452 5895, Pop 081 832 5895 Website: www.dsdsamui.com Email: info@dsdsamui.com

Chaweng - Chaweng Pattana Townhouses for rent/sale

LH0013: Bangmakham 3 Bedroom House Bang Makham, less than a kilometre drive from beach & restaurants. Presentable 3 double bedroom, 2 en-suite bathrooms, 1 separate bathroom, large living, dining & kitchen, maids quarters, ample off street parking. Sea & sunset views. Ample room on 1,560 sqm site for renovations, pool etc to make this a very desirable property. Chanote Title. Priced to sell at 11.7m Thai Baht.

2 storey townhouses with 2 bedrooms and bathrooms. Living room with furniture, TV, DVD and cable. Fully fitted kitchen. 3 A/C’s. ADSL, telephone line. Landscaped garden with communal swimming pool and pavilion. 24 hour security. Located in Chaweng (near Tesco Lotus) Rent from 15,000 baht per month (yearly contract), sale: 2.2 million baht

Tel: 0 811 901 540 Email: narisa@punrai.com Website: www.punrai.com

Contact: Steve 081 452 5895, Pop 081 832 5895 Website: www.dsdsamui.com Email: info@dsdsamui.com

LH0015: Bang Por 1 Bedroom House Bang Por - 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, living & dining room. Great sea view. Land size 140 Tarangwa. Chanote title. Price: 3 Million Baht

Tel: Email: Website:

0 811 901 540 narisa@punrai.com www.punrai.com

Bophut - Whispering Palms Resort Maenam - Baan Suan Neramit House for rent/sale 2 storey house with 3 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms.Living room with furniture, TV, DVD and cable. Fully fitted kitchen. 5 A/C's. ADSL, telephone line. Landscaped garden with private swimming pool and pavilion. 24 hour security. Located in Maenam (opposite Maenam post office). Sale 5 million baht. Contact: Steve 081 452 5895, Pop 081 832 5895 Website: www.dsdsamui.com Email: info@dsdsamui.com

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 147


WALKING… The walking street market at Bophut’s Fisherman’s Village is a great way to taste local Samui life.

148 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 149


Samui seems to be obsessed with ‘walking streets’, and there’s one almost every day of the week. But what is a walking street market? Well, as the name suggests, a section of road is closed off to the traffic and turned into a pedestrian-only area, lined with market stalls that sell everything from clothing to cheap (but oh so good) cocktails, and a plethora of street-food, including every kind of food-on-a-stick imaginable. But, if your time is limited, then Fisherman’s Village on a Friday evening is the one you should try. This village is the heart of Bophut, which is along Samui’s northern shore, with Maenam to the west and Bangrak to the east. Turning onto the 4171 at the traffic lights on the 4169 ring-road, you’ll see a welcoming archway to the village. Here, The East meets The Med, with French-style vintage boutiques mingling with elegant teahouses, and local Samui designer wear outlets next to seafront coffee lounges. Old wooden Chinese shop-houses have been converted into stylish shops, restaurants and bars, yet modern Mediterranean-style buildings don’t appear out of place.

150 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Walking street is a great place to experience an introduction to street food, as you’ll find all the local favourites – including deep-fried insects at only 20 baht a portion. Apparently, they’re delicious and addictive, and you can use the grasshopper legs as toothpicks after munching a few. And what’s great about walking street is that, although frequented by tourists, it’s also where locals and expats mingle, chat and generally get together for a weekly social session. The expat influence and the need to satisfy less adventurous tourists means that Western food is also represented in the way of shwarmas, pizza, lasagne, paella, German bratwurst and more. Cocktail stands vie for customers with bartenders that fling bottles into the air Tom Cruise style, pumping out dance music and advertising their specialty drink, usually selling for a mere 50-60 baht. But as we’re in Thailand, it seems fitting to try as much Thai food as possible. So if you’re in a group, buy a little of this and a little of that and sample a variety. Dishes to look out for include corn-on-the-cob, grilled on the open fire, satays, mango with sticky rice, seafood omelettes, and various curries served with rice – if you see a queue of locals, know that this stall sells authentic Thai dishes, and they’re likely to be spicy! There’s of course noodle soup, pad Thai, and all kinds of fresh seafood, meat and chicken on the grill. www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 151


If you fancy something sweet, don’t miss the homemade coconut ice-cream, served in a half coconut shell, and with an unusual selection of toppings. The pancake stands are always popular, and particularly good is the Nutella and banana filling. There’s also a good selection of Thai-style desserts – little coconut tarts, desserts baked in banana leaves and brightly coloured sweets. Other than cocktails, to drink you’ll find fresh fruit shakes, and delicious iced coffee and iced teas. You can always rest your legs for a while and pop into one of the many bars and lounges for a beer or glass of wine. And if you can’t beat them, join them. So say the village’s bars and restaurants, which are all open for business. And rather than trying to compete with street food prices, they join in the fun and many set up their own stalls to sell tasters of what their menu offers. Bars don’t seem to mind if you snack on your street food while enjoying a spot of people-watching over a drink – and this is most certainly the best place to people watch, as anyone and everyone comes to explore. What’s great too is that here, at walking street, it’s perfectly acceptable to walk the street with a cocktail in hand. Can you imagine walking with a drink in say London, New York or Sydney and not being stopped by the police? Two streets intersect at a small square, complete with a stage, in front of the Bophut pier. Here, each week there’s a different local act performing and often competitions of sorts too. Watch local children dance with hula-hoops or demonstrate Thai dancing and music. Or watch a Samui reggae band get the crowd going with its renditions of Bob Marley. Children enjoy walking street as much as their parents as it’s a safe place for them to interact, watch a show, play on the beach and do their own shopping for local sweet treats, helium balloons and cheap toys. Shopping opportunities are abound with market stalls and local boutiques selling clothing, shoes, bags and other accessories, souvenirs, home-ware carved from coconut wood and just about everything else. Remember, that prices at market stands are generally not fixed and traders are open to friendly bargaining.

152 l www.samuiholidaymagazine.com


Zico’s is an electric combination of colourful calypso, vibrant carnival rhythm and dance a unique party experience not to be missed! Every night is fiesta night at Zico’s. The beat goes on, and so does the dancing. Party down until the early hours at our spacious bar and lounge area with Brazilian influenced bargrooves. Tuck into a superb selection of all you can eat grilled seafood and meats, prepared just for you, complimented by Samui’s largest salad bar.

ZICO’S BRAZILIAN GRILL & BAR Discover a fantastic Churrascaria Service with 17 different meats while bumping to the beats of samba performed by 2 authentic professional dancers from Brazil.

Price 885THB net per person Price 440THB net per child (6- 12 years old) Finish your evening at the Zico’s Bar and listen to the greatest hits while sipping on a fresh and tasty Caipirinha. An unforgettable evening to enjoy with your friends and family!!!

Get 10% off our buffet with 1 free Caipirinha, signature cocktail LIVE from Brazil 100% LIVE

Everyday except Mondays From 20.00 - 22.00 hrs. Enjoy live Samba at the Zico’s restaurant & Bar performanced By 2 authentic Brazilian dancers from Sao Paulo. A true “Not to Miss “evening with your friends and family.

CHAWENG BEACH: OPPOSITE CENTARA GRAND BEACH RESORT SAMUI

T : 077 230 500 I E : zicos@chr.co.th I Facebook: Zico’s Grill’n Bar Open daily: Bar 17.00 - 01.00 hrs., Restaurant 18.00 - 23.00 hrs. W W W .CEN TA RA HO TELS RE S OR T S . C OM

As it’s become so popular, Fisherman’s Village walking street can get quite busy, so it’s best to arrive early – it’s open from around 5:30 pm, and starts packing away around 10:30 pm. Walk and explore before the crowds arrive, and then find a good spot at a bar with a street view and enjoy the rest of the evening watching the world go by. Fisherman’s Village walking street has become such a success that other areas of Samui have copied the idea, with Chaweng, Maenam, Lamai and Nathon now hosting their own on different days throughout the week. There are smaller versions at the Seatran pier in Bangrak as well as in Choeng Mon. If you’ve not yet experienced a Friday night at Fisherman’s Village, it’s wellworth giving it a bash, as a visit to Samui just wouldn’t seem complete without it. Don’t miss trying a mojito, and perhaps even take on the challenge of a tasty grasshopper or two.

Rosanne Turner

www.samuiholidaymagazine.com l 153


Santib

Santiburi Beach Resort Golf & Spa

Rim Talay Restaurant at Santiburi Beach Resort, Golf & Spa

Premier Pool Villa at Bo Phut Resort & Spa

Sala Thai Restaurant at Bo Phut Resort and Spa


buri Resort

Bo Phut Resort & Spa

FEATURING THE OUTSTANDING 18 HOLE CHAMPIONSHIP GOLF COURSE FOR YOUR PLAYING PLEASURE, THE SANTIBURI GROUP WELCOMES YOU TO EXPERIENCE OUR FINE DINING AND THE HOSPITALITY OF TWO EXCEPTIONAL BEACH RESORT GOLF AND SPA.

12/12 Moo1, Maenam, Koh Samui, Surat Thani 84330 Tel: +66 (0) 7742 5031-5 Fax: +66 (0) 7742 5040

12/12 Moo 1, Bo Phut, Koh Samui, Surat Thani 84320 Tel: +66 (0) 7724 5777 Fax: +66 (0) 7724 5776

Sales Office: 245/7 Sukhumvit 31, Klongton Nua, Wattana, Bangkok 10110, Thailand Tel: +66 (0) 2260 2530-5 Fax: +66 (0) 2260 7570 E-mail: info@santiburi-samui-resort.com Website: www.santiburi.com



July/Aug 2013