“Villa Kamelia is designed for lovers of open space mixed with total privacy.” Villa Kamelia
The stunning Villa Kamelia is hidden away in Koh Samui’s BoPhut hills, a six bedroom spacious sanctuary that’s really rather fabulous. As first impressions go this five-star luxury villa certainly has the wow factor. Built across a series of pavilions that span the hillside the simple white expanses are offset with bold colours, local artwork and the latest technology that gives an overall stunning effect.
The two open-fronted living area pavilions are positioned at the top of the gated property near the entrance with its oversized wooden door and decorative K. These spaces have their own colour coordination; the open-plan Western style kitchen and sun terrace has red accents while the living room and adjacent pool deck adopt a blue theme. Attention to detail is evident here with each colour schemes reflected in the art, parasols, pool towels and even the trinkets on the display shelves.
The infinity pool, state-of-the-art integrated sound system with indoor and outdoor speakers, cable TV with the latest release movies and a funky pool table kept us entertained pre and post outings and during the frequent rain showers.
Showcasing modern Thai-design, the villa can accommodate up to twelve guests in its three spacious bedroom pavilions descending across the property and accessed via a series of white concrete internal stairways. Every wing has a large master suite and an adjacent generous sized double room which all benefit from the same design, the only difference being the colourful art hanging on the walls.
Floor-to-ceiling windows offer an unrivalled view of the local landscape, the open plan bathrooms complete with rain showers are discreetly hidden behind a dividing wall. Custom made wooden double beds are perfectly position to maximise the view with matching wooden furniture; there’s ample storage, a large wall-mounted TV and a wireless sound system in every room.
The sixth pavilion is a home to a glass fronted gym where you can work out with a view of nature and the Gulf of Thailand beyond. Yoga classes on the pool deck and in-villa spa services can be arranged at an additional cost but we choose to have our daily treatments in nearby Fisherman’s Village and Chaweng. I can personally thoroughly recommend Let’s Relax Spa at the bottom of the hill on the main road for professional but slightly pricer treatments.
Diminutive Thai couple, Aom and Yong were our villa hosts for the week preparing the daily breakfast spread and keeping the villa spotlessly clean. While the breakfast offerings may have been more Western with eggs cooked to order, pastries and local fruits, they really excelled when preparing an evening Thai feast (available at an additional cost). The couple visited the local market and cooked traditional dishes to cater for our mix of dietary requirements of carnivores, vegetarian and pesctarians. Overall the service was discreet, one may say almost invisible at times, but they certainly made our stay most comfortable.
This secluded spot may offer guests sanctuary but the hills to ascend/descend to the property can be tricky especially when there’s torrential rain. While the overall design is splendid the kitchen area and two lower bedroom spaces are not internally connected to the living space which can be a hindrance when it’s raining or you have forgotten something in your room, first world problems and all that.
The villa is remote so there is nothing within walking distance so you need to organise your own transport. Free airport shuttles are included (Samui Airport is just 5 km away) and the villa concierge team are happy to organise transport and tours around the island. Local taxis are plentiful when out and about (barter the price before you travel) and there are many local rental companies to hire a car or scooter.
The Local Area
Gecko Bar is within the locale (not walking distance unless you have stamina for steep unlit hills) set into the hillside. It’s a cool space with a chilled out vibe, a large cocktail list, bar bites menu, pool table and infinity pool. Fisherman’s Village is just a short drive away, an upbeat place with local shops for all your Thai trinkets (local market on Fridays too), various spas offering massage treatments and lots of different restaurants and bars.
Check out Coco Tams Beach bar if you are in the neighbourhood and its new eatery next door, Coco Tams x Peppina for Italian pizzas and delicious mixology (service was painfully slow but the food was tasty). There’s lots of good places to grab a coconut, eat seafood and local Thai favourites such as massaman curry. The white sandy beaches of Bo Phut are also only a short drive away.
Backpackers haunt Chaweng Beach is a little further by car but worth a visit for a change of scenery, beach and more restaurants and spa options. A Western shopping mall and international brands can also be found here along with plenty of beach bars, Muay Thai fight shows, nightclubs and the more traditional Thai nightlife. Lots of art shops too for anyone looking to bring home a special souvenir ot two, all canvas’ are rolled then encased in tubes for transportation on the plane (visit the Modern Thai Art Gallery for a great selection).
The twelve metre high golden Big Buddha statue, Wat Phra Yai, that can be seen from the villa on clear days is located near the airport and worth a visit for an injection of culture. Big Buddha is not just a tourist attraction but a temple visited by locals on a daily basis so respectable attire must be worn, free robes are available at the entrance.
As this was our third time visiting the island we abstained from too much touristy activity, first timers in Koh Samui, the Coconut Island due it’s huge coconut harvest, has lot to offer visitors – check out my full Koh Samui guide here.
If you are looking for a luxury contemporary accommodation in Koh Samui then Villa Kamelia may be just the place for you. The property is pristine throughout with particular attention to detail to ensure guests have a comfortable yet indulgent experience. Perfect for our group of three couples and obviously good for larger parties and families with older children too (if you don’t want beachfront) but not ideal for younger children (in my opinion) due to the flights of stairs and glass. I can certainly recommend the villa and Koh Samui itself for the perfect getaway after the festive season and to celebrate New Year.
The Nitty Gritty
Villa Kamelia, Bophut Hills, Koh Samui. Thailand
Luxury accommodation with state-of-the-art amenities
Free and fast wifi
The Not so Good…..
Villa is not signposted
Nothing within walking distance
We travelled from Abu Dhabi to Bangkok with Etihad Airways and on to Koh Samui with Bangkok Airways. We booked Villa Kamelia direct with Sunshine Samui Villas but you can also find it on Booking.com, Airbnb and other travel sites.
Read more about Thailand in my previous posts In Pictures | A Postcard from Thailand, Discover Thailand | Phuket , La Flora Resort Patong | Phuket Discover Thailand: Bangkok, Oriental Residence | Bangkok, Siam@Siam Design Hotel | Bangkok
All views are my own. Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this page © Jo Brett 2018. All rights reserved. Additional and featured photos used with courtesy of www.sunshinesamuivillas.com/villa-kamelia