Hilton

Should You Stay at the Intercontinental or Conrad Koh Samui?

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This year’s Asia trip centered entirely around a stay at the Conrad Koh Samui, which I wanted to go to the minute I heard about it and years before it was actually finished. Then award nights at the Intercontinental Koh Samui’s 2 Bedroom Villa came up for the price of a regular room, 25,000 points, and I was conflicted as to where I should stay.

Travel Summary’s comparison of the two properties was beautifully timed and based on his reviews I decided to visit both. Here is my assessment of the two very nice but very different properties.

Intercontinental Koh Samui

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort lobby poolIf you enjoy people watching and spending a lot of time out and about around the resort, this is the better property. There are many pools to visit and the general spaces — beach, lobby, restaurants — get more traffic. Probably the best choice for families and friends unless you’re in a 2 bedroom villa or bigger at the Conrad.

Check rates at this hotel:   IHG  |   Booking.com   |   Orbitz   |   Expedia  |   Priceline

Pros

  • Restaurants are expensive, but not as much as the Conrad Koh Samui and there’s a wider selection on the room service menu.Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Beachfront
  • Better/wider beach front
  • Even half empty, the resort had more energy and there were more people out and about.
  • The Baan Thai spa is also pricey but cheaper than the Conrad.
  • Amazing staff and service!
  • Award stays start at only 25,000 points a night

Cons

  • Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Living RoomThe numerous horizon pools are tepid and feel a little scummy on the bottom, as if they needed to be cleaned a little more often.
  • Lots of stairs to get anywhere, including the complimentary golf carts on the main road.
  • Even with a two bedroom villa which I loved, most of the views from the rooms are partially obscured by trees and your best bet for views or sunning is from the beach or the beautiful lobby
  • If you don’t have a villa and you’re not staying on points, then you’re paying alot for not much space (from the pictures I’ve seen).

Conrad Koh SamuiConrad Koh Samui Sunset from Villa 110 Living Room
More expensive both for points redemptions and on-site costs, but perfect for people who prefer quiet getaways and having their own private pool.

Check rates at this hotel:   Hilton  |   Booking.com   |   Orbitz   |   Expedia  |   Priceline

Pros

  • Every room is a villa, so there are no bad rooms, though some might have better views
  • Personal horizon pool (very clean) and deck which gets sun most of the day and is perfect to watch the sunset fromConrad Koh Samui Azure Grill view
  • Even at high occupancy, the main pool and restaurants never seemed very crowded
  • Better restaurant options, though very pricey
  • Outstanding free breakfast for HHonors Gold and Diamonds
  • Amazing staff and service!

Cons

  • Conrad Koh Samui Steep HillsProperty is so steep you need call in advance for a golf cart to go almost anywhere on site
  • The beach isn’t very impressive
  • The spa and restaurants are very expensive and the room service menu is fairly limited
  • One bedroom villas might be claustrophobic for families or friends staying there

It’s probably obvious that I preferred the Conrad Koh Samui a little bit more if I had to choose, but I really liked the Intercontinental Koh Samui as well and will happily stay at either again! (And it will probably be the Intercontinental first, just because it’s more affordable on points)

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3 Comments

  1. Bob

    September 4, 2014 at 10:51 am

    #firstworldproblems
    🙂 But nice article!

  2. Christian

    September 4, 2014 at 4:55 pm

    Did either have offsite reasonably priced food within easy walking distance?

    • Keri Anderson

      September 5, 2014 at 4:38 am

      Not that I’m aware of. Seemed like it was at least a mile to the nearest store and involved awful hikes back up to the lobbies.

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