Lovely Lamai Beach is lined with boutique-style resorts offering long and short stays on this ever-popular holiday island. The beach itself, Samui’s second most popular after Chaweng, is a classic, palm-lined gem of soft white sand, gentle azure waters, giving relaxing days in the sun. Lamai resorts boast charming ethnic Thai designs and décor or are elegantly upscale, modernistic takes on traditional architecture and almost all are sited right on the beach.
Families will love the quieter, more luxurious resorts at the northern end of the beach, and the sea here is shallow until a long way out, making it perfect for smaller children intent on swimming. There’s a good range of prices to suit all pockets, although the closer to little Lamai town you go, the more the upmarket options take over. The beach road backs the curving bay, offering local seafood restaurants using ingredients fresh from the morning catch, and street food is easily found along the road.
The high-end Lamai resorts are popular with honeymooning couples, many of whom choose to have their wedding right on the sands fronting their resort. It’s the most romantic setting imaginable and a great excuse for a holiday for friends and family as well as for the happy couple. Everything along the bay is within walking distance, and Lamai’s laid-back vibe is a totally different experience from frenetic Chaweng Beach a short drive away.
For a romantic dinner overlooking the ocean, upscale Lamai resorts offer gourmet dining based on fresh, locally grown ingredients and the bounty of the Gulf of Thailand’s warm waters. Menus include Western dishes, fusion foods and imaginative takes on traditional Thai dishes, accompanied by interesting wine lists. Stunning views across the sea to nearby islands come as standard, and the sunsets are glorious.
Standards of accommodation vary according to price, with the newer, more luxurious resorts in Lamai boasting villas beautifully set in landscaped tropical gardens. The larger properties come equipped with terraces leading to small, private infinity pools looking out through palms and flowering shrubs to the sea, and ensuite facilities and kitchens are provided with every need for the perfect holiday.
On-site spa and fitness amenities are become more common, and interior décor features Thailand’s famous handicrafts as well as silks. Visitors on a last-minute trip will find the best way to source the perfect home away from home is to wander along Lamai Beach until they find a property which fulfils their dream. Some resorts are older, less well-maintained and offer fewer facilities, but many of the recently-built complexes are as good at it gets.