After ten thousand miles of flying and thirty plus hours of travel, we reached our final destination, the Intercontinental Samui Baan Taling Ngam Resort. As our van arrived at the resort, the seemingly endless amount of travel to reach Koh Samui suddenly seemed all worth it. We strolled into the open air lobby of the hotel which is set on top of a cliff overlooking the Gulf of Thailand.
We were warmly greeted by the hotel staff and the check in process was seamless. If the views from the lobby were any indication, we were in for a relaxing, amazing week in an idyllic location. The first amazing aspect of the Intercontinental Samui, besides the location, was the price.
For a luxury resort, the cost was extremely reasonable compared to other resorts on the island. Given the location of the resort on the side of mountain, we opted for a room toward the top of the hotel with views overlooking the Gulf of Thailand. This happened to be the cheapest and best option in our opinion. The other options included bungalows located on the beach or villas scattered along the mountainside.
As we entered our room, sweeping views of the Gulf of Thailand awaited us. The room was beautifully furnished with a luxurious bathroom, a very comfortable bed, and a spacious balcony. An added bonus of the room was the excellent air conditioning.
The heat and humidity in Thailand was unlike anything we had ever experienced. Within minutes of being outside, the sauna-like heat would hit us.
Luckily, the hotel provided complimentary bottles of water every day. Although any vacation is a break from daily routines, we developed our own routines at the hotel. Our day would usually begin with buffet breakfast which was set at the top of hotel overlooking the islands in the Gulf of Thailand.
The buffet was wonderfully appointed with western and eastern options which included exotic fruits, an omelet station, and just about anything anybody could want for breakfast. After such a hearty breakfast, I would usually try to work out by either climbing the stairs around the resort or using the workout facility. It was 225 steps from the beach to our room. However, if you didn’t want to take the steps, there were always plenty of buggies to take you wherever you wanted to go.
Factoring in the humidity and heat (temperatures were in the mid 90′s throughout our stay), climbing over twenty flights of stairs a couple of times per morning was a great workout. The air conditioned workout facility was located right on the beach with panoramic windows that overlooked the water.
After a morning workout, it was usually time to relax by one of the many pools situated throughout the resort. My wife and I both preferred the infinity pool located just adjacent to the lobby which had amazing views of the Gulf of Thailand. A mid-afternoon lunch by the beach was capped off with a leisurely stroll along the empty stretch of sand under the intense Thailand sun.
The service was impeccable throughout the resort. Hotel staff were friendly and conscientious. The food was amazing including our nightly dish of pad thai. The only bad part of the vacation was that it went too fast.
The days were so enjoyable and the setting so beautiful that we really didn’t want it to end. On the afternoon of our last day, the impending post-trip melancholy started to set in.
As we departed from the Intercontinental Samui, we started dreaming of a day when we would return to this wonderful place.