Cleansing, rejuvenation, street parties, family reunions, friendly water fights, fun and more fun… Songkran in Thailand means this and a lot more. It is also marked with a beautiful tradition where youngsters pour water with exotic perfume in the palms of elders and Buddha images to seek their blessings.
Come April and every corner of Thailand will be drenched in the spirit of the colorful festival. Drenched literally, as everybody is out there on the streets throwing water on others. That’s not just for fun but also traditionally it is believed that this is done to wash all the misfortunes and struggles of the previous year, cleanse the bad karma and start afresh in the New Year.
By the way, Songkran by definition is the celebration of Thai’s New Year.
Well, besides water fights, watch out for some interesting stuff. You see out there transsexual lady boys dressed up as pretty ladies escorting guys on streets. It’s a different matter that they look prettier than real ladies though!
And for all such wonderful celebrations, Koh Samui is no exception. It takes Songkran as “seriously” as the rest of Thailand much to the delight of every visitor here. The most common manifestation of Songkran to be seen on Samui is the practice of ‘Sat Nam’. Well, the word sounds pretty heavy but don’t worry, it simply means collecting large quantities of water, preferably chilled, park yourself at a strategic spot from where to surprise and drench passing unwary pedestrians. How wonderful, if you take it in good humor.
Songkran in style and luxury, that’s what you can indulge in if you stay at some exclusive villas like Villa 4375 on Koh Samui’s virgin northern shore. True, Festivals are the opportune time to break free from mundane chores and stay at a tranquil place like this villa which can pamper you in ultimate luxury yet respecting your privacy.
The stunning 7 bedroom villa is just the right choice for families or groups as it offers multi-functional living spaces and luxurious facilities with an array of appealing options for an uninterrupted siesta.
Each bedroom features a minimalist decor accented by plush soft furnishings, Asian artifacts and contemporary artwork. Stylized comfort reigns here with generous en-suite bathrooms and a dedicated room for kids.
The Villa’s design is accentuated by a series of elegant stand-alone pavilions tastefully built amid landscaped lawns.
Polished teak-wood floors, vaulted ceilings and large windows highlight the décor and allow ample natural light. Towering palms, banyan and tamarind trees on a gentle pathway lead you to a secluded private cove and sandy beach.
The leisure time at Villa 4375 is much cherished. There are several indulgent ways to keep you happily engaged.
There is a custom built Clubhouse with its own private fitness and massage rooms, dry sauna, steam and huge Jacuzzi. There is a massage therapist, beauty consultant as well as a private yoga teacher, what more you could ask for…
Tennis lovers can’t possibly resist villa’s floodlit tennis court while swimmers lap up in the 32-meter private pool. For those keen to improve their tennis game, ask for the Tennis coach and he will be right there.
Or simply enjoy a cool game of pool or mahjong in the Clubhouse.
Better still would be to head down to the private 12-seater cinema for movie time for a thrilling experience complete with popcorn and ice cream.
Don’t miss the secluded semi-private beach of the villa. Magnificent sunsets await you as you admire the views over the bay to neighboring Koh Phangan. There is a small cove in the front of the villa having its own protected rock pool which is not accessible during seasonal high or low tides.
Your needs are catered for by an efficient team that lives on site to ensure full dedication and attention.
There is a very talented Thai chef who prepares a range of delicious Thai and international dishes and also happy to take requests of special meals, such as a BBQ or private menu dinner.
No communications issues as the General Manager of the Villa knows many languages. Furthermore, a personalized concierge service is offered to every guest so that they can plan their outings as per their comfort. All this goes to ensure world class hospitality.
When it comes to weddings, Villa 4375 doesn’t believe in doing it ordinary – it excels. Whatever your taste, the team here believes in making your destination wedding ‘a dream come true.’ There is a specially designed, covered platform with a marriage gazebo, to make your event look special.
Several water bodies create a soothing ambience and DJ podium brings in all the excitement. A dedicated food and beverage service area and exclusive bar and guest bathrooms keep the events seamless and stress free. Same goes for other celebrations and corporate events.
For all those seeking to venture out, Koh Samui has a host of interesting things to do and see. From mummified monks to the famous grandma and grandpa rocks (Hin Ta & Hin Yai) to attractive waterfalls, the island’s repertoire of splendid natural and man-made attractions are indeed worth seeing.
Nature lovers take a day trip to visit Ang Thong Marine National Park, just an hour by boat from Samui. It is one of the most spectacular natural marine sites in Thailand, with 42 limestone islands fringed with untouched white sand beaches, fertile mangroves and the hillside jungle that hides waterfalls and a stunning inland lake.
Take a break and enjoy photography at Hin Ta and Hin Yai rock formations site near the traditional Muslim fishing village Hua Thanon. The lush landscape of plantations and buffalo fields reflects how life might have been on Samui prior to the onset of tourism traffic. Enjoy the views from the rocks and vicinity, absolutely spectacular, stretching across the sea to nearby islands. Make your friends back home envious of you, pick up picture postcards of the rocks and other Samui sights from the stalls set up here and send to them. Or buy some souvenirs for them and don’t miss tasting a special Thai sweet called ‘kalamae’.
It is a good idea to visit a few well known temples of the region, the most famous being ‘Big Buddha’, a 12-metre golden statue that can’t be missed as you step on to the island.
Visit Wat Khunaram, you will find an unusual sight, Koh Samui’s Mummified Monk, Luong Pordaeng who died in 1973 is in a seated meditative position, and ever since his body has been on display in an upright glass case at the temple.
Other islands off Samui include Koh Phangan, famous for its `monthly Full Moon Party, but now also a major health and wellness destination. Koh Tao is also a popular destination for lovers of marine splendor and boasts top class snorkeling and diving opportunities.
Shopping choices are equally vast and diverse, from modest street stalls to high-end fashion boutiques and global brand stores. For kids’ outing, Samui Aquarium & Tiger Show is the best bet. They can get close to an array of marine life, colorful birds and exotic wildlife all in one stop.
Dining out is always a pleasure as Koh Samui has some of the best restaurants in spectacular locations. Nothing beats Zazen in Bophut when it comes to a romantic site for dining. One of Samui’s most romantic settings, here the fusion cuisine is presented in chic luxurious style and truly magnificent location.
Another popular place not to be missed if you wish to taste some delicious food in perfect royal style is ‘Starfish & Coffee,’ located right on the beach in Fisherman’s Village. Soothing ambience with warm low-level lighting and a distinctly Thai /Mediterranean feel of opulent luxury, it remains forever in your memory.
Visit H Bistro in Fisherman’s Village and meet the celebrity chef, Stephan Jean Dion who has served the King of Jordan and also been the executive chef of the famous Sirocco in Bangkok.
So April is round the corner, plan well and pack well, head to Koh Samui, join the water fight, get colorful and be blessed!
You will not regret. Lets Songkran!