We stayed at the beautiful Santhiya Tree Resort Koh Chang during Songkran 2021. Covid was really starting to get bad in Thailand again (wave 3) and we did not want to travel via any common carrier, so we elected to return to our familiar Koh Chang by car to stay safe during the pandemic.
We reserved a hideaway pool villa at Santhiya Tree for a cost of 3600 baht per night with breakfast. This was the first stop on our island trip, so we arrived early in the day after our stopover for 1 night at the lovely Bliq Hotel in Chantaburi. Our welcome at Santhiya Tree was very warm and professional and we were so happy to be back on our favorite beach in Koh Chang, Klong Prao.
Our host showed us to our room, which was very private and nestled into the surrounding greenery of the beautiful property. The villa was surrounded by a privacy fence and featured a small modular pool on a deck as you first enter the yard. Up from the pool was the villa itself, which was decorated in traditional Thai style, inside and out.
The room was really lovely and intricate in its design sensibility. The main room was dominated by a large, comfy bed with mosquito netting and included a desk, lounge sofa, some chairs and assorted storage. There was no TV in the room, but we had our tablet if we wanted to watch anything in our downtime. We found the interior of the main room to be very useable and nice. We definitely slept well in the big, soft bed.
The bathroom was a complete miss for us. It featured a black color scheme and was partially open-air, which turned out to be a bug-filled nightmare in the evening. Our bathroom was literally filled with thousands of bugs each night and with various changes in level and the tendency to keep water on the floor, it was quite a hazard. The corner tub looked nice, (sort-of) but was not clean or useable. The stand up shower sprayed uncontrollably everywhere, but did have great water pressure and was very hot, which was great after time spent swimming in the Gulf of Thailand! A bathroom renovation would make this room much better in every conceivable way.
We ate breakfast at the resort each day and the staff did an amazing job. The area was open air and very covid safe. Food selection was a awesome, with something for everyone, including our vegetarian preferences. We had dinner the first night, which was a bit awkward, since we elected to eat ala carte due to the resort hosting a seafood buffet in their main dining space. Service was ok at best, but the food was tasty, despite being a bit expensive for some very simple noodles and pizza…
The property at Santhiya Tree Resort Koh Chang is amazing and is definitely the star of the show! Everything is lovely and very natural, with Thai teak construction featured throughout. The location is perfect, directly on Klong Prao Beach, with the breakfast restaurant and pool area facing the mountains on the interior of Koh Chang for contrasting views. There was also a pool area in the middle of the resort with pool access rooms and another large pool near the beach for a total of 3 pools that we counted, plus the individual pools in the pool villas like we had… The gardening was superb and we appreciated the work put in by the many gardeners each day.
It was not ideal to walk into town from Santhiya because of its winding, unlit access road. We tried it and found it to be quite dangerous when it was dark. Cars came down the road quickly and there was no room to get out of their way without jumping into the snake-filled underbrush… Not a great experience walking here, but once you reached town, everything was convenient enough if you made it in one piece!
One of the best parts of our stay ar Santhiya Tree Koh Chang was the staff. Most of the people working here were truly great! The breakfast staff in particular were perfect. Most of the staff were well trained, confident and super kind. Santhiya is professionally run and well managed, which is important for some guests who cringe when staying “local style”.
Of note, the pool in our villa was super small and did not offer much in the way of swimming. It was also super cold for some reason. Despite our love for the water, we did not really use it for these reasons. However, with the idyllic water of Klong Prao Beach right here, we did not need it, since we spent hours in the Gulf enjoying some of the best experiences in Thailand right near home.
Most of the beach restaurants that we love so much on Klong Prao Beach were closed and some looked abandoned for good. This did diminish one of our favorite things to do at night on the beach, but is an unfortunate consequence of the ongoing covid disaster. We feel terrible for all the people who lost so much on Koh Chang due to the pandemic. We did our very best to support the remaining businesses while we were there…
All in all, we loved Santhiya Tree Resort and had a great stay. The only notable downside was the awkward bathroom, but the wonderful staff, beautiful environment and perfect location made for a great stay that we would recommend to anyone. Thank you Santhiya Tree Koh Chang for a great time, from your admiring fans Jammy Journey!
Enjoy our video review of Santhiya Tree Koh Chang also!