Hotel Review : Vana Belle, A Luxury Collection Resort, Koh Samui

Beach At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

So our Vacation at Koh Samui begins! We planned a 7 day 6 night stay in Samui visiting 3 SPG hotels [so make sure to look out for us on doing detailed reviews like this for all the hotels we stay in on this trip]. Why are we doing this? Well it’s a vacation and literally to follow our hobby as exploring hotels and resorts has become a thing for our family. Vana Belle was in the top selection of the hotels that we wanted to stay in as we have heard many great things about the place [We’ll be staying at Le Méridien and Sheraton Koh Samui too]. So before you read the below please note that we are never out there to find the faults of the hotels we stay at. We all know no place is 100% perfect and there is always room for improvement but we do like to give constructive feedback and tell it as it is for not only for readers who are considering to stay but for the hotel itself. So… Six pages long!?!? This sure is one heck of a review! So let’s get right into this review 😉

Location

Hotel grounds At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Vana Belle is located right in the center of Chaweng Noi Beach. The hotel is about a 15 minute drive from the airport [Airport Taxi’s will usually charge around 500-600 THB]. There is a 7-11 and a Family Mart located near the hotel so if you need to grab any snacks or personal amenities you can do so in a very short walking distance. However to get around to Central festival or to any attractions in Samui you are going to have to ride a taxi which they usually will charge a flat fee. Surrounding the hotel is also a few other restaurants unfortunately we can’t recommend any of them as we had all our meals at the hotel.

Check-In

Welcome towels At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

We arrived atVana Belle with smooth check-in as it should always be with a Five Star Hotel. We did not have to wait at all and what was extremely impressive was when we came in they greeted me immediately by my first name… which literally took me by surprise…now there is more to this of how this came to be. We were greeted with their welcome tradition at the hotel by pouring sacred water on our hands for good blessings and followed by very nice cool scented towels.

Welcome desert dishes At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

The person who took care of us K.Chigga, was extremely attentive in greeting and showing us around the resort. She literally explained every single detail about the resort which we greatly appreciate as it’s always really nice to know the fully story behind the designs and concepts of a hotel. If you’re wondering, the hotel has different animal sculptures around which are actually  beastly fantasy creatures! These sculptures surely bring a unique experience to the hotel and surely is greatly to be appreciated if you’re coming from abroad.

Hotel grounds At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

As a process of checking in to the hotel K.Chigga showed us to our room where she demonstrated every single feature of the room from how the lights worked, to the coffee machine, to the safe. It’s always really nice when hotel staff really do their best to to make sure that you feel comfortable with the place you’ll be staying.

Surprise welcome at Vana Belle Koh Samui

However, what was extremely impressive was when we walked into the room we were surprised by a photo of us in a picture frame placed on the desk! This surely was a winner in terms of creating extremely good impressions and made us very welcomed at the hotel. Not only were we amazed by the photo that they had pulled off of our facebook profile/page [Yes… it’s a bit stalkerish but it was extremely amazing that they went this far] but we were also welcomed by a full table of welcome drinks, fruits, chocolates, and a cake! To top it all off the cake literally had our review profile name on it which is super over the top lol, but with all honesty it was a beautiful and thoughtful gesture and my family will always remember this. In terms of effort this resort goes way above and beyond in terms of creating great impressions.

Room – Classic/Deluxe Pool Suite

Classic / Deluxe Room At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

So I was really confused of whether or not we were in the classic or deluxe pool suite which honestly reading from the website there really isn’t much of a difference as both rooms have far views of the sea and the room layouts are the same. The rooms are nicely decorated in earth tone wooden colors full with all the expected amenities that you would expect at a five resort from hair dryers, coffee machines, hot water boiler, his/her sinks, sea salt for the bath, ironing board, safe and everything. The soap, shampoo, conditioner, and lotion are from Pan Puri a luxury Thai organic spa product brand from Thailand.

Classic / Deluxe Room At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

The highlights of the room are surely the design of where the bathroom is a part of the room and also obviously the private pool terrace which faces out to the sea [depending on which view you get]. You literally get this feeling in your room that you are in your own private villa.

Classic / Deluxe Room At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

The only downside from our experience in this room is probably maintenance of some the things in it. Mark my words that this isn’t a deal breaker but they are surely things you notice when staying at five star resort. The biggest things that stood out to us were the dead unwatered plants on our terrace on the right of our room [114], one of the pool reflecting lights out, and what really took us by surprise was the many many ripped holes in all the curtains which you can see in the morning or during daylight when closing them. Details like this though are not deal breakers for staying at a hotel but surely show how well a place is being upkept. We did however see that many areas were being repainted and maintained so maybe this was just coincidentally one spot that was overlooked.

Cleaning

So, I have very mixed feelings about this as we stayed here for two nights. The first day everything including the turndown service was extremely spotless and perfect. Everything that was messy or not inplace was put back to perfection as if it were like magic!

Classic / Deluxe Room At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

However, on the second day for some reason the person cleaning our room seemed to be a bit in a rush. You could tell that a lot of the details that you’d expect were not placed as it was or how it would have been. A lot to be honest is acceptable as we have seen worse at some hotels but what came to a surprise to us was that one of the main trash bins which was loaded with diapers was not emptied. We were a bit surprised and thought it was probably just a careless mistake and thought not much of it. However, turndown service came again and as a result the trash bin was still not emptied! What was even more stranger is that unfortunately, our daughter had some crumbs from cookies and food on the bathroom mat and none of it was cleaned or picked up. My thoughts on this is that cleaning people were most likely in a rush and weren’t doing the full duty on the room. Again, not a big deal breaker but just telling our readers as it is.

Service

Hotel Grounds At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

For majority of the time we spent at the hotel the service was superb. Asking for extra amenities, blankets, and pillows were delivered without any hesitation. Everything we asked for was on point. You’d be surprised of how many hotels in Thailand that we stayed fail to deliver things that we asked for but this place truly was able to deliver all the things we asked for. Calling a buggy to get around the hotel was never a problem. Majority of the staff greeted us every time with a smile and with great genuine hospitality.

Pool Bar At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

So we don’t want to be nit picky on everything and we absolutely are surely not out to find any mishaps but the nature of how we do reviews is we tell it as it is from a very neutral standpoint. It’s interesting how one individual can sometimes change a viewpoint of an overall experience because we did run into a hotel staff lady who we had not previously engaged with before at the pool bar who seemed to be taking orders or doing some sort or order for room service [I don’t believe she was a staff at the poolbar or the italian restaurant] but when we asked about a buggy and for some reason she responded in rude/not good attitude matter saying “if you want a buggy you have to tell us” and for some reason gave us a bit of attitude with a smirky face or in Thai “สบัดหน้า ชัก/เชิ่ดหน้าใส่” which in all honesty we asked very politely about a buggy and obviously what she should have done is straight a way, is ask if we would like to call for one instead of giving attitude and telling us what to do. I honestly didn’t think much about it at first but when my wife and I were talking about reviewing the service here on our way to the next hotel she brought up this situation too which clearly means and verified to me that this was truly inappropriate. Though this is a very little matter and obviously didn’t ruin our trip it surely stuck in our minds when we think about service. Again, it would be unfair to judge all the staff here by one person but it only takes one person to change an impression… and I guess that’s where we are coming from in sharing our experience and telling it as it is.

Food

Food At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

We actually had all our meals here for the whole 3 days and 2 nights that we were here trying a variety of Western/Italian and Thai food. Service and people were extremely nice and professional. I would like to give praise especially to K.Bella and K.Preaw whom were extremely great host at the restaurant and I can not but praise enough about them. They were very attentive to our needs and very caring for our daughter at all times. The Thai food at Kiree  is extremely well presented and flavored quite nicely. There is a wide variety of expected traditional Thai dishes and a few Southern Thai food menus too [Be sure to try the Had Yai Fried Chicken it’s quite good!].

Food At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection
Food At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

The Western/Italian food however is another thing… it may be my taste buds but I sure thought that everything we ordered on our first night was extremely bland including the Striploin steak, the pumpkin soup and the carbonara [which I can understand since it was ordered for our daughter and we asked to have it very lightly seasoned]. Again, as I mentioned the staff here are quite attentive in regards to our thoughts and opinions and they had waived all those dishes for us which I thought was a very nice gesture but not necessary to do so as we did end up finishing the food 😉

Desert At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Desert here is actually really well done! I highly recommend it as it’s pretty much a variety of Ice Creams, Brownies, and Partfaits! All well put together with exotic flavors of ice cream like salted caramel, mango, and coconut… well this was what we had, which was the Vana Belle. I’m pretty sure, judging from the pictures of desert menu that all of them are really good. Our daughter surely would endorse on it as she literally finished her portion!

Lunch At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

As for Lunch by the pool, we went for the typical hotel food you’d expect at a Thai resort including Pad Thai, a Pizza, and some fried rice. Lunch went well without a hitch with great flavor and a beautiful view by the sea.

Eggs Benedict At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Buffet breakfast here serves a selection of pastries, cereal, fruits, meats and cheeses. You might at first feel that the variety of food is not as much as you would expect compared to other hotels. However, they make this up in ordering off the buffet ala carte menu which has eggs, pancakes, waffles, thai dishes, noodles, porridge, vegan menus and lots more. All of the food that we ordered from the menu came back in beautiful displays and most importantly freshly cooked!

Afternoon Tea snacks At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

In the afternoon we were invited to afternoon tea which was nice and offered pastries, fruits, and sandwiches which was really nice and well done.

Pool

Main Pool At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

The pool here serves its purpose, though it’s a bit smaller than what we originally expected, but as said, it was nice. For those who would like to know this iniftiny pool is also a salt water pool which is supposedly better for your skin 🙂 The pool also features some areas which are very shallow and good enough for small children to play in. There are quite a number of sunbeds around the pool including three large sunbeds that are literally in the pool too [Though you expect that these to be popular most of the time they are empty because of the harsh sunlight that directly shines on them during the day] Most importantly, the pool as you would expect is right by the beach so you can swim and get a beautiful view of ocean. There is also a bar and  italian restaurant [Panali] operated by the hotel next to the pool which also serves food and drinks at the pool area [This is where we had lunch ;)].

Main Pool At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

One of the key features that most people don’t really know about is that next to the pool there is a rock/waterfall display. If you walk over to where the waterfall is you will find a hidden little pool . There you will be able to take some pretty awesome pictures and have a more private intimate setting where it feels as if you are in the middle of your private oasis.

Beach

Beach Front At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Vana Belle as mentioned above is located on Chaweng Noi Beach, which honestly is one of the most beautiful and clean public beaches that I have seen. On a bright sunny day you’ll find white sand, blue skies, and beautiful clear blue and turquoise waters. Though the beach front area is public there aren’t as many people walking around as it is closed off by a few rocks around the area, and majority of the people are on the other far end of the beach where there are more bars and restaurants. Next to Vana Belle are also a few other luxury resorts which probably explains why it’s not so crowded with other by passers.

Beach Front At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

A great feature that the hotel offers is also having lots and lots of sunbeds across the beachfront and done in not a tacky way. Also if you’re interested they can provide you with a special candle light dinner for those special occasions right on the beachfront.

Candle light dinner At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Activities

Pool At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Unfortunately, there is no kids club here but they do have certain activities for children and different time period around the beach. I also discussed with some staff there they mention that they do offer a babysitting service.There also a wide variety of classes likes Yoga, Pilates, and boxing some complementary and some you obviously have to pay for but I’d say the pretty much have a jammed pack schedule. As for facilities and other services they have 24 hr gym, spa and library. We can’t really comment on this as we didn’t really do any of the activities or utilize on the facilities but it was nice to know that it was available.

Check-Out

Evening At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Same as check-in everything went extremely smooth. Everyone greeted us with smiles and made sure that we were taken care of. They provided water and towels and did everything that they could to make us feel very welcomed from start to end. The hotel also provided us with transportation with a flat fee of 500THB to our next destination which was the Le Meridien Koh Samui.

Private PoolAt Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Pros

  • Amazing clean and beautiful beachfront with Lots and lots of sunbeds
  • Many beautiful settings around the hotel and perfect to take pictures for social media 😉
  • Attentive and great dining service [though Western food may need to reconsider in flavoring/seasoning]
  • Overall service though we did have have a situation from one individual… it is well deserved as a five star hotel
  • Above and beyond with welcoming guests and surprising them with very memorable moments like the picture frame and the welcome deserts!
Beachfront At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Cons

  • Not sure if this is a con but the hotel is more suited for couples not many kids activities nor is there a kids club. It’s not the family hotel that kids would go wild for if you know what I mean 😉
  • Cleaning and some service should be a bit more consistent again it only takes a few things to change an impression
  • Some maintenance and upkeep in the rooms should be done for ex. the holes in the curtains
Panali Italian Restaurant At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Tips

  • Always and always ask for a room with a seaview or at least partial sea view it really does make a difference.
  • Make sure you try out their Thai dinner and desert at Kiree
  • Remember that this hotel is literally all about the beautiful beachfront so the sunbeds at the beachfront are taken up quite quickly [well at least the ones under trees with some shading]. If you’re planning to stay there all day spend time at the beachfront first and then move to the pool later in the late afternoon.
Drinks At Vana Belle Koh Samui The Luxury Collection

Conclusion

Vana Belle is truly deserving of it’s title as a five star luxury resorts. It truly showcases to why SPG made this hotel apart of the Luxury Collection and all others should truly follow by this standard. Though you might feel that the rooms are a bit pricier but you are paying for literally the private pools in your room and most importantly that amazing beachfront! This place is surely suited for romantic getaways for for couples who just want to relax. If you’re looking for peaceful, beautiful, mature, and luxury this is the place for you!

Stayed in February 28th – March 2nd 2018

Contact

Address : 9/99 Moo 3, Chaweng Noi Beach, Surat Thani, Koh Samui, 84320, Thailand

Tel : (66)(77) 915 555

Website : www.vanabellekohsamui.com

E-mail : reservations.vanabelle@luxurycollection.com

Instagram : https://www.instagram.com/vanabelle.kohsamui/

Facebook :  https://www.facebook.com/vanabellekohsamui/

Photo Gallery