Koh Pha Ngan is a sister island of larger Koh Samui, located in the Gulf of Thailand. While it is famous for its full moon party, the island retains much of its local character and natural, unspoilt beauty.

Thong Nai Pan beach, with its white sand and clear blue water, has always been a popular beach for tourists. In fact, the site of this luxury resort was previously occupied by backpacker accommodation.

Generally, arrival to the resort is by speedboat to the beach. However, the main reception has been located to provide the same level of guest arrival experience as those arriving by ferry and then by road across the island. Despite it being a world-famous tourist destination, Koh Pha Ngan retains a strong rural feel.

The concept of this development was to reflect this character throughout the resort environment. Hence Anantara Rasa Nanda has a very organic, laid-back feel.

Arriving from the beach, only some of the resorts roofs and beach seating are visible. Otherwise, all that the visitor sees is its nearly 800-foot-long (240-meter-long) beach frontage, coconut palms, and rainforested hillside behind.

Guests then enter the site adjacent to the beachfront restaurant and infinity pool, stepping up gradually to the reception area.

Sand from the beach continues right into the restaurant’s double-height external dining area. Right alongside is the pool bar with thatched roof. Here guests immediately experience the casual feel of the village, before proceeding to the cool reception area and lounge set back further into the trees.

Through the road entrance gate and across this local-use road, visitors enter the resort’s spa. Here the site transitions from flat beachside to tropical hillside. The spa has an entirely different feel to the villas and main facilities. It is dark and subdued, with treatment rooms set among rockpools and dense vegetation.

Back on the beachside, the site enjoys a relatively unusual parallel orientation to the beach. Of the overall development of 26 villas, a total of 17 occupy premium beachfront locations. The layout of the central access path parallel to the beach allows proximity of all villas to the sights and sounds of the sea.

Continuing the overall rural village theme, the four different villa types provide visual variety in terms of scale and backdrop. The villas are both single- and double-story, and all incorporate traditional southern Thai architecture consisting of a concrete tile roof, thatch, and the selective use of natural timber.

  • LocationKoh Pha Ngan, Surathani, Thailand
  • Date2009
  • Interior designerP49 Deesign & Associates
  • Landscape designerInside Out Design