Hotel Centara Grand Beach Resort Hotel 5 star
Easyexperts
38/2 Moo 3, Borpud Chaweng Beach Koh Samui Surat Thani 84320 Koh Samui, Thailand -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

Centara Grand Beach belongs to a Thai company but is done out in a vaguely colonial style that is certainly more Western than it is Asian. Having opened some 15 years ago, the hotel is one of Koh Samui's bigger hotels, standing in the middle of Chaweng Beach, and is something of an institution on the island. The services here are aimed at the more luxurious end of the market but are sometimes lacking in elegance. Although this establishment is ideally-located for those looking to make the most of the Chaweng nightlife, it is also a great destination for families, thanks to its comprehensive range of facilities.

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  • Seaside
  • Family
  • International Standard
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    Location 7.31 /10

    The hotel stands at the heart of Chaweng Beach in Koh Samui, around a 20 minute taxi ride from the airport (which will cost around £6-8). The ports of Bo Phut and Mae Nam, where you can get a boat across to the islands of Koh Phangan and Koh Tao, are around 30 minutes away.

    Accommodation 7.70 /10

    The Centara, which isn't called 'Grand' for nothing, has a large number of guest rooms in various categories that are divided among the 8 buildings that form the complex. The Deluxe Standard rooms are, in essence, those that do not have a sea view. If you do want to wake up to the glistening blue waters every morning you'll have to fork out a little more for a Deluxe Ocean View room instead. All of the rooms offer the same facilities and are reasonably sized. Done out in dark colours and with a modern layout, they feature parquet flooring. The bathrooms, for their part, have checkered flooring, which isn't to everyone's taste, and a window opening into the bedroom bringing a welcome touch of natural light into the room (particularly useful when it comes to doing your make-up, ladies!).

    The 'basement pool suite' is located on the ground floor, separated from the lovely garden by a wall. Whilst you might be happy to find the inner courtyard with its private little swimming pool, this will no doubt be short-lived when you realise there is no sea view given the supposedly higher category of the room. The ever-so-slightly Asian-style decor here is little more than convincing, which actually goes for all of the guest rooms.

    Overview 8.00 /10

    Sometimes 'grandiose', the Centara Beach Grand bears its name well as it can, at least where the hotel entrance is concerned. On arrival at the hotel you'll find the entrance decked with lush green tropical plants and a huge glass-roofed reception area that partially opens out onto the gardens. The surroundings here are almost colonial in style, with a relatively traditional decor, light-coloured floors, and white columns. The reception itself is very bright and has a certain elegance to it, even though it generally isn't the most luxurious of settings.

    An almost imposing staircase leads down to the hotel's garden, which is located between the hotel and the beach. This area provides a charming setting, with a combination of an extremely well-maintained English-style garden, tropical vegetation home to brightly-coloured butterflies, and Oriental influences including ponds full of water lilies.
    Carry on through these Zen-like surroundings and you'll find yourself at the Cenvaree Spa, tucked away between two buildings and pleasantly-decorated in the traditional Thai style, with a preference for plush surroundings and open-air massage rooms. (Cenvaree Spa: open 9:00am to 8:00pm).

    Further along still, heading towards the restaurant area, you'll come across the main swimming pool, which is surrounded by plants and trees bringing a lovely feeling of tranquillity to the place. Unfortunately, though, it does have a few flaws that detract somewhat from its elegance, such as the outdated, plastic, and really not very appealing deckchairs. Having said that, it might not be the widest of swimming pools but it is certainly long enough for you to be able to start or end your day with a good swim (when there are fewer people about).

    Food and drink 7.90 /10

    The restaurant area was one of our favourite parts of the hotel. The various restaurants here overlook the gardens and include Thai and Japanese choices as well as the main restaurant, the Palm Cove, where breakfast and the other meals of the day are served as a buffet. The glass-roofed restaurants are located not far from the beach and boast a truly Zen-like atmosphere.

    Beach 7.70 /10

    The beach here is tiny and is far longer than it is wide. Having said that, it does having the feeling of a quiet little bay to it and is just a stone's throw away from the hotel's guest rooms, which is a great bonus!

    To know

    The hotel stands right at the heart of Chaweng Beach in a prime spot for those looking to sample the local nightlife, with plenty of bars and restaurants to choose from. You might be interested to know that the very lively Brazilian restaurant on Chaweng Street hosts weekly shows and in fact belongs to the same owner as the hotel, so you can contact reception to book a table.

    Equipment

    • Shuttle bus
    • Car park
    • Handicap access
    • Restaurant
    • Internet access
    • Air conditioning
    • Spa

      massage, beauty salon, sauna, hammam, keep fit, spa, Turkish bath, wellness

    • Swimming pool
    • Sports equipment

      tennis, gym, beach volley, sailing, water-polo, surfing, fitness, sports

    • Animals allowed
    • Hairdresser
    • Whirlpool bath
    • Safe
    • Solarium
    • Meeting room

    advantage

    • The central location
    • The gardens
    • The restaurant area

    disadvantages

    • The rooms are pleasant but nothing special

    Traveller Reviews

    • Overall Score nc/10
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