Eco Aware Villas in Thailand

Eco aware and villas are not often seen in the same sentence. However eco friendly detergents, water reusing, bio sewage treatment, solar panels and recycling – these villa owners are aware of their responsibilities and make a real effort to limit the impact their villa has on the local environment.

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The View

The View

Thailand » Koh Samui » Taling Ngam

Although only two of us visited the View, we could appreciate just how ideal this villa would be for group holidays and special celebrations – it really is designed for entertaining. Villa manager, Khun Opal, and her assistant, Khun Nokkie, as well as several other unobtrusive staff, keep the villa immaculate and cater to guests’ every whim, including arranging parties.

We arrived late afternoon and were welcomed with refreshing homemade lemonade. We didn’t have to wait long to witness Taling Ngam’s famous sunset – with Khun Opal’s signature cocktails as the cherry on the top. We gave the chef carte blanche at dinnertime, our only requirement being that the meal was vegetarian. He served a vegetarian Thai green curry with steamed rice, sesame seeds and pumpkin, and deep-fried tofu with a tamarind sauce. Both dishes were beautifully presented and delicious, with just the right amount of spice.

As Tech-junkies, we enjoyed this Mac-happy villa. Not only is there an iMac computer for guest use, but this also controls the entertainment centre, from the music that’s piped throughout the villa and garden, to the Apple TV with over 700 movies and the iPod with over 4,000 songs to select. We could sync our own iPads, and MacBooks with the system too. It was such a tough choice whether to watch a movie on the indoor living room projector, the outside lounge projector, or even on the lawn near the beach, that we gave up and decided to take advantage of the blissful peace and quiet and catch up on some reading instead!

We woke to cheerful birdsong and, with the touch of a bedside button, remote-controlled blinds let in the morning light and the endless sea views. Energised on return from our early morning walk along the villa’s virtually private beach, the smell of freshly baked croissants and coffee lured us to the dining room where we enjoyed a breakfast accompanied by views of the Five Islands.

We only wish we’d had more time to take full advantage of the View’s amazing facilities: kayaking around the bay, a friendly game of croquet on the lawn, an invigorating muay Thai lesson with a personal trainer, or a cooking lesson with the chef. We could only imagine how much a child would enjoy exploring this villa –especially with its dedicated children’s wing – although we did discover that with the automated blinds down at night and the reading spotlight on, you’ve got the perfect backdrop for a shadow puppet show!
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From $1,950 ++ Special 3br Rate

Bedrooms 5

Sleeps 6-12*

Our
Rating 9.2

The View

The View

Thailand » Koh Samui » Taling Ngam

Although only two of us visited the View, we could appreciate just how ideal this villa would be for group holidays and special celebrations – it really is designed for entertaining. Villa manager, Khun Opal, and her assistant, Khun Nokkie, as well as several other unobtrusive staff, keep the villa immaculate and cater to guests’ every whim, including arranging parties.

We arrived late afternoon and were welcomed with refreshing homemade lemonade. We didn’t have to wait long to witness Taling Ngam’s famous sunset – with Khun Opal’s signature cocktails as the cherry on the top. We gave the chef carte blanche at dinnertime, our only requirement being that the meal was vegetarian. He served a vegetarian Thai green curry with steamed rice, sesame seeds and pumpkin, and deep-fried tofu with a tamarind sauce. Both dishes were beautifully presented and delicious, with just the right amount of spice.

As Tech-junkies, we enjoyed this Mac-happy villa. Not only is there an iMac computer for guest use, but this also controls the entertainment centre, from the music that’s piped throughout the villa and garden, to the Apple TV with over 700 movies and the iPod with over 4,000 songs to select. We could sync our own iPads, and MacBooks with the system too. It was such a tough choice whether to watch a movie on the indoor living room projector, the outside lounge projector, or even on the lawn near the beach, that we gave up and decided to take advantage of the blissful peace and quiet and catch up on some reading instead!

We woke to cheerful birdsong and, with the touch of a bedside button, remote-controlled blinds let in the morning light and the endless sea views. Energised on return from our early morning walk along the villa’s virtually private beach, the smell of freshly baked croissants and coffee lured us to the dining room where we enjoyed a breakfast accompanied by views of the Five Islands.

We only wish we’d had more time to take full advantage of the View’s amazing facilities: kayaking around the bay, a friendly game of croquet on the lawn, an invigorating muay Thai lesson with a personal trainer, or a cooking lesson with the chef. We could only imagine how much a child would enjoy exploring this villa –especially with its dedicated children’s wing – although we did discover that with the automated blinds down at night and the reading spotlight on, you’ve got the perfect backdrop for a shadow puppet show!
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From $2,050 ++ Special 4br Rate

Bedrooms 5

Sleeps 8-14*

Our
Rating 9.2

The View

The View

Thailand » Koh Samui » Taling Ngam

Although only two of us visited the View, we could appreciate just how ideal this villa would be for group holidays and special celebrations – it really is designed for entertaining. Villa manager, Khun Opal, and her assistant, Khun Nokkie, as well as several other unobtrusive staff, keep the villa immaculate and cater to guests’ every whim, including arranging parties.

We arrived late afternoon and were welcomed with refreshing homemade lemonade. We didn’t have to wait long to witness Taling Ngam’s famous sunset – with Khun Opal’s signature cocktails as the cherry on the top. We gave the chef carte blanche at dinnertime, our only requirement being that the meal was vegetarian. He served a vegetarian Thai green curry with steamed rice, sesame seeds and pumpkin, and deep-fried tofu with a tamarind sauce. Both dishes were beautifully presented and delicious, with just the right amount of spice.

As Tech-junkies, we enjoyed this Mac-happy villa. Not only is there an iMac computer for guest use, but this also controls the entertainment centre, from the music that’s piped throughout the villa and garden, to the Apple TV with over 700 movies and the iPod with over 4,000 songs to select. We could sync our own iPads, and MacBooks with the system too. It was such a tough choice whether to watch a movie on the indoor living room projector, the outside lounge projector, or even on the lawn near the beach, that we gave up and decided to take advantage of the blissful peace and quiet and catch up on some reading instead!

We woke to cheerful birdsong and, with the touch of a bedside button, remote-controlled blinds let in the morning light and the endless sea views. Energised on return from our early morning walk along the villa’s virtually private beach, the smell of freshly baked croissants and coffee lured us to the dining room where we enjoyed a breakfast accompanied by views of the Five Islands.

We only wish we’d had more time to take full advantage of the View’s amazing facilities: kayaking around the bay, a friendly game of croquet on the lawn, an invigorating muay Thai lesson with a personal trainer, or a cooking lesson with the chef. We could only imagine how much a child would enjoy exploring this villa –especially with its dedicated children’s wing – although we did discover that with the automated blinds down at night and the reading spotlight on, you’ve got the perfect backdrop for a shadow puppet show!
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From $2,150 ++

Bedrooms 5

Sleeps 10-16*

Our
Rating 9.2

Villa Kalyana

Villa Kalyana

Thailand » Koh Samui » Laem Sor

A villa with the ambiance and amenities of an exclusive private-island-hotel, but one where guests have the luxury of dictating their own schedule and choosing who they share precious holiday time with. This was the impression we took away with us following our recent stay at Villa Kalyana.

Whether you want a tropical holiday retreat for family and friends, an exclusive executive escape, a dream wedding venue or space for some other special celebration, Villa Kalyana fits the bill.  With nine privately positioned and thoughtfully appointed guestrooms (five with romantic garden bathrooms) plus a kids bunk room, and an abundance of cool communal areas, both outside and in – including a dining room fit for a banquet (and a kitchen to cater for one), a games room for the gents, movie room for the kids and poolside lounge for the ladies – options for fun and relaxation are seemingly endless.

The villa’s quiet beachside location on Samui’s southernmost tip may not suit the clubbing crowd whose idea of the perfect holiday is to be out on the town every night, but it’s ideal for large group gatherings who enjoy their own company. There’s little need for nightlife, restaurants, shops and other amusements at this self-contained villa where a team of willing staff are on hand to look after you; there’s an impressive selection of gizmos gadgets and games for entertainment, and friends and family provide all the company you could wish for. The huge (chemical-free) swimming pool, vast gardens and virtually private beachfront make Kalyana a great choice for families with energetic children too.

Kalyana only opened to guests mid 2012 and with a few finishing touches, including a more confident and polished dining service, we feel sure that it will soon rank easily among the best private luxury villa experiences on the island.
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Miskawaan Residences - Villa Sila

Miskawaan Residences - Villa Sila

Thailand » Koh Samui » Mae Nam

The two Miskawaan Residence villas are positioned so as not to infringe on one other, allowing privacy in a sheltered beachfront world. However, clever design means that if you’ve booked both, it’s like having a luxury resort all to yourself.

The villa manager and her team were friendly and amenable throughout and we found the level of service to be exceptional – all staff were very professional and the villa manager speaks impeccable English. Alfresco breakfasts were enjoyed at the shady sala overlooking the bay and staff regularly appeared from nowhere to offer drinks and snacks, efficiently set tables, and prepare and serve meals to our schedule. Although we visited as a couple, we could appreciate how a large group would be well taken care of with this team, particularly for a corporate event.

The days passed gently, time between meals happily filled with regular dips in the pool interspersed with naps, reading and ‘Googling’ on the beachside terrace. For sun soaking sessions we headed to the beach, and staff obliged by moving the sun loungers down onto the sand for us. The water here is a balmy 28 degrees Celsius year round and deep enough for a long swim (during the monsoon in November the tides are higher, so the beach gets quite narrow).

We enjoyed the villa to the full, seeing little reason to go out when we had everything right there on our doorstep, and so explored the menu in depth and offset our guilt with regular visits to the fitness room and sauna interspersed with long beach runs and paddles in the villas’ kayaks. On the Thursday night, we enjoyed an evening at the nearby festive walking street market. On our return, our room has been turned down, the air-conditioning set at just the right temperature, and local coconut candy placed on our pillows. (It’s worth noting that the air-conditioning is so quiet, that had the room not been cool, we would have questioned whether it was on.)
 
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Miskawaan Residences - Villa Sila and Wayu

Miskawaan Residences - Villa Sila and Wayu

Thailand » Koh Samui » Mae Nam

The two Miskawaan Residence villas are positioned so as not to infringe on one other, allowing privacy in a sheltered beachfront world. However, clever design means that if you’ve booked both, it’s like having a luxury resort all to yourself.

The villa manager and her team were friendly and amenable throughout and we found the level of service to be exceptional – all staff were very professional and the villa manager speaks impeccable English. Alfresco breakfasts were enjoyed at the shady sala overlooking the bay and staff regularly appeared from nowhere to offer drinks and snacks, efficiently set tables, and prepare and serve meals to our schedule. Although we visited as a couple, we could appreciate how a large group would be well taken care of with this team, particularly for a corporate event.

The days passed gently, time between meals happily filled with regular dips in the pool interspersed with naps, reading and ‘Googling’ on the beachside terrace. For sun soaking sessions we headed to the beach, and staff obliged by moving the sun loungers down onto the sand for us. The water here is a balmy 28 degrees Celsius year round and deep enough for a long swim (during the monsoon in November the tides are higher, so the beach gets quite narrow).

We enjoyed the villa to the full, seeing little reason to go out when we had everything right there on our doorstep, and so explored the menu in depth and offset our guilt with regular visits to the fitness room and sauna interspersed with long beach runs and paddles in the villas’ kayaks. On the Thursday night, we enjoyed an evening at the nearby festive walking street market. On our return, our room has been turned down, the air-conditioning set at just the right temperature, and local coconut candy placed on our pillows. (It’s worth noting that the air-conditioning is so quiet, that had the room not been cool, we would have questioned whether it was on.)
 
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Miskawaan Residences - Villa Wayu

Miskawaan Residences - Villa Wayu

Thailand » Koh Samui » Mae Nam

The two Miskawaan Residence villas are positioned so as not to infringe on one other, allowing privacy in a sheltered beachfront world. However, clever design means that if you’ve booked both, it’s like having a luxury resort all to yourself.

The villa manager and her team were friendly and amenable throughout and we found the level of service to be exceptional – all staff were very professional and the villa manager speaks impeccable English. Alfresco breakfasts were enjoyed at the shady sala overlooking the bay and staff regularly appeared from nowhere to offer drinks and snacks, efficiently set tables, and prepare and serve meals to our schedule. Although we visited as a couple, we could appreciate how a large group would be well taken care of with this team, particularly for a corporate event.

The days passed gently, time between meals happily filled with regular dips in the pool interspersed with naps, reading and ‘Googling’ on the beachside terrace. For sun soaking sessions we headed to the beach, and staff obliged by moving the sun loungers down onto the sand for us. The water here is a balmy 28 degrees Celsius year round and deep enough for a long swim (during the monsoon in November the tides are higher, so the beach gets quite narrow).

We enjoyed the villa to the full, seeing little reason to go out when we had everything right there on our doorstep, and so explored the menu in depth and offset our guilt with regular visits to the fitness room and sauna interspersed with long beach runs and paddles in the villas’ kayaks. On the Thursday night, we enjoyed an evening at the nearby festive walking street market. On our return, our room has been turned down, the air-conditioning set at just the right temperature, and local coconut candy placed on our pillows. (It’s worth noting that the air-conditioning is so quiet, that had the room not been cool, we would have questioned whether it was on.)
 
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Moon Cove - Hai Leng

Moon Cove - Hai Leng

Thailand » Phuket » Cape Panwa

Hai Leng's postcard-perfect tropical panorama at the fringe of Ao Yon bay is about as good as a holiday escape gets. We loved watching the boats coming and going from our lavish perch on the marble terrace, with the most pressing decision we faced being whether to take another dip in the fantastic infinity pool, venture out for a stroll along the sands, or play pétanque. Actually, we have no idea how to play pétanque but the pitch is right there on the beachfront should we have wanted to give it a try! The cooler morning hours were especially delightful, watching the bay come to life while sipping our freshly-brewed coffee presented by the friendly, efficient maids who serve breakfast daily. We also indulged in an excellent evening meal on the terrace, a fantastic Thai seafood spread prepared by the skilled chef who may be brought in to cook additional meals for an extra charge. Hai Leng is where the owners of the three Moon Cove Villas stay when they are in Phuket, and indeed they were here when we came for a visit. Meal service was flawless and well presented. Though we were happy to remain lazily sequestered in the villa, it is worth venturing out for at least one afternoon to drive the scenic roads around the cape, with plenty of places to stop along the way to take in the views or enjoy a cool drink in a shady hut. Since our visit, an English-speaking villa manager has been hired, who helps communicate with staff, organise excursions, etc, in the owners’ abscense.
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Moon Cove - Noble House

Moon Cove - Noble House

Thailand » Phuket » Cape Panwa

Swaying coconut trees, a glassy-calm bay, vivid sunrises, jungle-clad hills: those seeking to escape into a classic tropical scene will find it here at Noble House – one of the most peaceful and picturesque villa locations we've found in Phuket. Here, you feel hidden away from the world yet it's less than 15 minutes by car to Phuket Town or Chalong Pier. We spent a lot of time in and around the pool, taking in the view, watching the activity in the bay. Couples will especially enjoy the relaxed pace of life here. Younger kids will need to be watched closely around the pool (which is 2m deep throughout), but they will have fun at the beach collecting shells and splashing in the shallow sea. The spacious lawn that stretches across the front of Noble House and neighbouring Villa Hai Leng offers plenty of running-around space, too. This sheltered, busy bay does not have the most crystal-clear water but it's perfectly safe for swimming – just don't venture too close to the pearl farm buoys or you'll be shooed away! Noble House is a new villa (built 2011) and the owners are hands-on and open to suggestions – be sure to give advance notice of any requirements you may have for children's equipment, bedding or other facilities. Aside from the daily breakfast service this is a self-catering villa but we do recommend hiring the private chef at least once during your stay. This can be arranged with the villa manager. We enjoyed a marvellous, beautifully presented seafood dinner on the terrace. Though we were happy to remain lazily sequestered in the villa, it is worth venturing out for at least one afternoon to drive the scenic roads around the cape. There are plenty of places to stop along the way and take in the views or enjoy a cool drink in a shady hut.
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Moon Cove - Taipan

Moon Cove - Taipan

Thailand » Phuket » Cape Panwa

Delighting in Taipan villa's incredibly picturesque location on one of the few remaining coastal areas of Phuket that retains a traditional charm, we sunk happily into a languid life here and were very reluctant to leave. Though life at the villa is relaxed, the bay is bustling, and we were perfectly content spending our day watching the comings and goings of the long-tail fishing boats and yachts, while wondering about the progress of the treasures hidden inside the dangling oysters at the pearl farm in the centre of the bay. Venturing down to the beach, we saw only a sprinkling of local families strolling the sands -- and no rental sunbeds or tourists in sight. Those who relish the chance to delve into the local culture of a place will really love staying here. This being a new villa, the owners are open to suggestions, however, so be sure to give advance notice of any requirements you may have for children's equipment, bedding or other facilities. Aside from the daily breakfast service, this is a self-catering villa but we do recommend hiring the on-call chef at least once – his seafood dishes are superb! Meals may be arranged with the villa manager. Though we were happy to lazily float in the villa's pool all day, it is worth venturing out for at least one afternoon to drive the scenic roads around the cape, with plenty of places to stop along the way to take in the views or enjoy a cool drink in a shady hut.
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* Additional charges may apply for maximum occupancy
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