Award Trips

Trip Report: Sunsets & Villas at the Intercontinental Koh Samui

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17 months ago I booked a reservation at the Conrad Koh Samui before the devaulation of Hilton Points. Then when it came time to book my flights there 5 months in advance, it turned out I needed to arrive on Koh Samui a day early to get the best schedule and price. So I decided to book the Intercontinental Koh Samui for 25,000 points, definitely a bargain when rooms were pricing at $250+!

A few days after I booked it, all rooms started coming up for 25,000 points. For my original night, only standard rooms were available, but for the rest of my dates both the 2 bedroom villa and the ocean front villa with pool were coming up. I split my days between the two, debating whether or not to cancel the Conrad.

As it wound up, the ocean front pool villa got downgraded with no announcement, so I cancelled those dates, but I kept the two bedroom villa, hoping they would upgrade me that first night. And they did!

I loved this property! We arrived and were immediately escorted to the gorgeous lobby to be checked in.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Front Desk

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Lobby View

We were presented with icy towels and fresh glasses of juice. While we waited I was blown away by the gorgeous view from the open air lobby.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort check in drink and towel

When we checked in, they had upgraded our room to the 2BR for our entire stay. I worried about telling them I planned to leave early, lest I have to pay a fine rather than just the points, so I didn’t (which later came back to haunt me). While we were waiting I checked out the business center which is arranged like a beautiful library.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Business Center

I was most impressed by the 100+ year old chess set for guests to use (with care).

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Business Center chess board

The resort property is extensive and we were then escorted to a golf cart to take us to our villa. We arrived, and were then guided down about 5 flights of stairs to our building. I felt very bad for the poor folks carrying our large suitcases.

I have stayed in many many nice hotel rooms and this 2 bedroom villa is among my top 5 all time favorites. The top floor is completely open featuring a dining table.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Decor

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Dining Room

A living room.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Living Room

A wet bar including our own wine fridge.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa wet bar

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa wine fridge

And a nice lounge bed?

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort villa canopy lounge chair

There was a great wrap around porch with a table and chaise lounges.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa porch view

The downstairs was two bedrooms and bathrooms. I claimed the Master Bedroom since I had applied my points, and reveled in the large space and great views of the ocean from my window. And a cute welcome gift of a Conrad monkey, floral sarong, and purple thai pants.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Master Bedroom

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Welcome Gift

The masterbath included a large tub and non-portable amenities 🙂

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Master Bathroom

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Bath Amenities

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Shampoo Conditioner

The second bedroom was quite nice — with only slightly obscured views of the ocean.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Guest bedroom

The bathroom lacked a bathtub but was otherwise quite nice.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Villa Guest Bathroom

After we arrived I scheduled an appointment with the spa, missing the amazing sunset but getting back in time to watch the candle lit balloons go up for a wedding happening nearby. It was breathtaking, and slightly surreal since we could also hear Pharrell’s Happy being played by the DJ.

My Ambassador status had lapsed, so there was no free breakfast, but even though the room service menu was expensive by Thailand terms, it was still very affordable for by US prices.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Room Service Breakfast

The next morning we decided to take a tour of many horizon pools. We went first to the closest pool — red — which was above our villa.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Red Horizon Pool

It was completely empty, and the foliage obscured the view so we soon vacated and went down to the pool along the beachfront, stopping to get lunch at Flames, their pool-side restaurant.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Oceanfront horizon pool

The food was good, though wine was expensive so I wound up with beer. I also wound up with a delicious crab dish that had too much shell for my taste, but that’s another story.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Flames Keri with Beer

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Flames crab dish

We spent some time in the pool — because of the heat it was bathwater warm and thus slightly scummy on the bottom and sides. We did the swim up bar and the underwater stools felt slightly slimy. Laying on the lounge and listening to the ocean was amazing though.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Beach lounge chairs

Later that afternoon we crossed the hanging bridge and made our way to the lobby (I felt like a kid again!).

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Keri hanging bridge

The lobby horizon pool was our destination (apparently the first horizon pool on Koh Samui) and it had some of the most impressive views.

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort lobby pool

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Original infinity pool

That pool also was a little too warm and slightly scummy. Don’t know if they don’t clean the pools enough or if it’s just because of the heat and humidity. But we headed from the pool to adjacent Air Bar which overlooks the gulf of Siam and caught an amazing sunset while sipping on horribly expensive bubbly!

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort Air bar sunset seating

Intercontinental Koh Samui Resort sunset view

Then it was time to head over to the Conrad and I hadn’t counted on not wanting to leave the 2 BR villa. Nor had I counted on the uproar leaving early caused. A sign of good customer service, they took us leaving a day early as a sign that things weren’t right and the general manager was there to check us out and make sure things were ok.

I felt really bad, and at the same time was even more impressed, which I didn’t think was possible. At only 25,000 points, this property is an incredible deal.

Would I have loved it as much if I had been in a standard room? Probably not. Yet, I still would have thought it was a bargain and worth staying at. Just make sure you get baht from the airport ATM, as they don’t have a cash machine on site, and arrange for private transfer from a private company. The hotel charges 2,000 baht, a private company only 850.

More posts from the trip:

Checking In and Air France Lounge at IAD
Korean Airlines First Class IAD-ICN
Hyatt Regency Incheon: Great Service, Hard Beds
Accidentally Seeing Seoul Like a Native
Tight Quarters at the Park Hyatt Seoul
Worth a Hike — Bukchon Hanok Village
Checking In for a Flight from Downtown Seoul 
Korean Airlines First Class Lounge Incheon Airport
Korean Airlines First Class Seoul to Kuala Lumpur
You Don’t Get Massaged By a Blind Paralympic Everyday...
Great Value at the Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur
Flying Firefly Airlines from Subang to Penang
Is Penang Hill Worth It?
Tour Bust in Penang
Campbell House: the Highlight of Penang
Penang to Koh Samui on Firefly


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Living for the little (and big things) that make life so fun, especially mistake deals and crazy last minute weekend mileage runs across the world.


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