Samui Wining & Dining
A PEARL ON THE BEACH
Lose yourself in getaway luxury at the stylish La Perle Luxury Boutique Hotel.

Lose yourself in getaway luxury at the stylish La Perle Luxury Boutique Hotel.Imagine the essence of Koh Samui – a tropical island with white sand beaches and blue skies. In the early days, these unspoiled beaches were sprinkled with little wooden huts. It was a paradise, waking-up to a sea view right on the sand. But times have changed, the little huts have gone, and the 5-star giants have arrived. But now, modern, cool and oh-so-laid back, the little bungalows are back. Just take a look at the exclusive and very stylish La Perle on Ban Tai Beach!

          

It’s a wonderful idea and it just had to happen – the new wave of small luxury boutique resorts. So many people look back with longing at those little family-owned huts. It was all just so friendly and personal. And even though the big hotels try very hard today, an international package with loyalty discount-points on all of its 200 rooms could never be the same thing.

          

But part of the attraction is the location, too. Chaweng is now big, crowded and busy. For your little boutique resort to work it has to be in the right location, and it has to have the friendly intimacy of those old-time bungalows from way back when. But, today, of course, we’re looking at high-end style and luxury, too.

          

It’s quite hard to work out where La Perle is on the map, but actually really easy to find – although if you’re flying in with a reservation to stay there, they’ll meet you at the airport, anyway. It’s located on the north coast of the island, in Ban Tai. Going from east to west, the north coast has three bays. There’s Maenam, then neighbouring to the west there’s Ban Tai. And then finally,Lose yourself in getaway luxury at the stylish La Perle Luxury Boutique Hotel.just before you come to the big hill towards Nathon, there’s Bang Po.

          

But what all these bays have in common is that there are hardly any big hotels, there’s a lot of small private residential housing, it’s all still un-commercialised, and the swimming here is probably the best on the island. The beaches are soft and white and the sea floor slopes gently and steadily downwards, with no sudden shelves or dangerous currents. It’s perfect for everyone, families with kids included.

          

Ban Tai Beach has changed very little over the years. The narrow road runs right along the beach, and there are still old Thai wooded buildings, dotted here and there. Unlike Chaweng, here everything’s still scaled down, small and friendly, like a little village. Because the old-style road is so close to the beach, the pattern is for the small resorts here to be split on either side of this. And that’s exactly what you’ll find when you pull up alongside the crisp modern lines of La Perle.

          

You can’t tell it from the lane outside, but there are 12 super-stylish and very modern ‘bungalows’ here – most other resorts would describe these as ‘pool villas’, as each one is carefully laid-out for maximum seclusion and privacy, and each has its own pool. There are three different types: two right on the edge of the sand with word-class views. There are also family bungalows of 70 square metres, plus several others with a slightly smaller footprint.

          

But it’s not until you go inside one of the bungalows that you realise just how chic everything is. This place is French owned and Frenchdesigned, in a pure white and blue motif throughout. The huge bed (with its luxurious 100% natural latex mattress) is resting on a sweeping white plinth that’s curved above the floor, Lose yourself in getaway luxury at the stylish La Perle Luxury Boutique Hotel.facing the opening glass double-doors and the infinity pool – or, if you’re one of the lucky ones, a panoramic ocean view. There’s a coffee-making corner and a mini fridge, plus a big flat-screen TV. The bathroom is sheer luxury, with ultramodern basins, taps and fittings. Needless to say there’s fast Wi-Fi. And there’s a generous deck with loungers around the private pool, too.

          

Apart from their sense of style, the other thing that the French are noted for is their love of food and wine. So it’s hardly surprising that their seafront restaurant, L’éKrin, sitting next to the swimming pool and bordering onto the beach, is a perfect little gourmet’s oasis. It’s breezy and fresh and open all around, startlingly contemporary, a symphony in white and tones of blues. And, of course, it was a French chef who set it all up and put the excellent menu together. Kobe beef fillet, rack of lamb with Thai herb crust, fresh fish and seafood – plus a Thai fusion menu as well as the usual traditional offerings. Plus there are no fewer than 26 hand-picked wines; reds, whites, roses and sparkling, plus a bevy of exciting cocktails, too.

          

A picture is worth a thousand words, so go to their website and Facebook page, listed below, and see for yourself. This lovely little boutique resort is a pearl, indeed!

          

Rob De Wet


 


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