Affordable Massage Without Leaving Your Luxury Hotel
When I was planning my trip to Koh Samui earlier this year, I never dreamed that I’d be able to get an in-room massage at the Intercontinental or Conrad Koh Samui for less than $18!
One of the downsides vacationing in Koh Samui was the lack of convenient, inexpensive massage options. I’ve been spoiled by traveling to Thailand in the low season when the spas are running specials or finding places like Healthland Spa in Bangkok, where you can have a 2 hour Thai massage for 500 baht. But everything on Koh Samui tends to be more expensive and both the Intercontinental and Conrad were upwards of $100 an hour.
I searched for cheaper options, of which Chewang Beach had quite a few, but those all required long taxi or hotel car rides to get to. Then I found suggestions on a Flyertalk thread and wound up calling Carnation Samui Massage Service.
It seemed a little too good to be true. They’re based in Chewang, but will come to the hotel (45 min away) and prices for an hour long massage are 590-700 baht ($17.93-$21.26).
We called for two 2 hour treatments, and though they had never been to the Intercontinental before, after talking to the hotel they assured us they could come.
Two pleasant women showed up on time and got to work, first figuring out where was the best place for the massage, ultimately hauling in two of the heavy lounge chairs from the porch into the living room and covering them with the clean but worn sheets they had brought.
They then handed us each a sheet to change into for the massage just like a basic spa experience. The massage was great! Not the best I’d had but solid and more than worth the price. The biggest factor had nothing to do with their technique, simply that the lounge chairs weren’t designed for massage and despite the sheets and padding, it was a little uncomfortable.
And I got a complimentary hair braiding when my therapist finished before the my friend’s.
Two hours of enjoyable massage, with tip, and without having to leave my room for less than half the cost of one hour at the hotel spa!
And though the therapists admired our pretty two bedroom villa, they were excited to hear we were moving to the Conrad, which they assured us was much nicer and prettier.
So when we’d settled into the Conrad Koh Samui, we booked another set of treatments. This time, taking place in the much softer mesh lounge chairs outside by the pool. Which was pretty awesome since there was a cool breeze and the sounds of the ocean. 🙂
I had a different therapist who also braided my hair, and I was beginning to feel self-conscious (am I someone who looks like they need their hair braided?) until I saw they had also braided my friend’s. And apparently this time they’d done deliberately so we’d “look beautiful” at the Thai boxing fights we were going to that night. Hahaha.
I highly recommend Carnation Samui massage services as a great alternative to expensive hotel spas, though it might not be as enjoyable if you’re in a regular size hotel room without a lounge chair and porch. I’ll also note that for 2 hour treatments, it seemed like they ran out of areas to work on about 10 minutes early (hence the hair braiding), but at such a low price, it didn’t bother me at all.
I’m not inspired to look for options like this when traveling to other expensive resort destinations!
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