Are you looking for a luxurious getaway in Thailand? Then Soneva Kiri should be at the top of your list!
Located on the pristine island of Koh Kood, this award-winning five-star resort offers stunningly appointed villas with incredible ocean views, all within easy access to some of the world’s best beaches.
From the secluded location to the hospitable staff, our visit to the Soneva Kiri was magical from start to finish. Plus, with its focus on sustainable living and eco-friendly practices throughout every aspect of operations – from food to services – Soneva Kiri is truly ahead of its class in environmentally conscious tourism too.
Let’s take a closer look at this incredible hotel and find out why it stands out as one of Asia’s premier luxury resorts!
*Disclosure: This post contains a few affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through my link. Please note that we were invited to stay at Soneva Kiri, however, all thoughts and opinions are my own, as always.*
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The Concept of Soneva
Something that sets Soneva apart from many premium resorts is its commitment to blending sustainability with comfort and exclusivity.
Set up by a couple with a passion for going against the grain and prioritizing eco-friendly practices in the world of hospitality, Soneva has been creating sustainable, high-end hotels in the likes of the Maldives and Thailand for over 20 years.
Soneva focuses on giving the finest treatment to its guests while simultaneously contributing to worthy causes.
Through their carbon levy, which is included in the bill for every guest, Soneva has helped fund the planting of over half a million trees in Thailand, provided cooking facilities for countless locals in Myanmar, and constructed a huge windmill in India.
The philosophy of Soneva goes beyond the resorts themselves, having been the catalyst of the Maldives mission to phase out single-use plastics.
In an era where ethical, sustainable tourism is becoming increasingly important, Soneva truly is a leading light.
Arriving at Soneva Kiri
Getting to Soneva Kiri is an experience in itself as it involves a scenic private plane ride from Bangkok. Yes, you’ve read that correctly – a private plane!
There are six flights per day departing from Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) and there is a separate counter at the airport (K24) assigned specifically for Soneva Kiri guests.
The airport staff will assist you with your check-in process and escort you to the Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon Lounge where refreshments and snacks are available while waiting for your flight.
The flight on the eight-seater private plane takes approximately 90 minutes and offers stunning views of the pristine Gulf of Thailand.
Once we landed on the tiny island of Koh Mai Si, we were welcomed by our barefoot guardian (personal host) and quickly transferred to our speedboat, which had us at Sovena Kiri within a 5-minute boat ride.
During the boat ride, we learned more about the “No News, No Shoes” philosophy of the resort, which encourages guests to disconnect from the outside world and truly relax in this natural paradise.
According to the philosophy, there are no news channels or newspapers available in the resort (though wifi is readily available), and guests are encouraged to walk barefoot throughout their stay to connect with nature and experience a sense of grounding.
Of course, you can keep your shoes if you want to – in fact, during the midday heat, the sand and the wooden walkways can be really hot so it’s good to have some flip-flops or sandals on hand.
When we pulled up at the jetty, we were given the warmest welcomes by the management team and the staff. I really loved that everyone knew our names already, it truly felt like arriving at a home away from home!
We received our own electric buggy for getting around the resort, and our barefoot guardian escorted us to our villa while giving us an overview of the resort’s facilities and our personalized itinerary.
Villas at Soneva Kiri
Sovena Kiri comprises 33 incredible villas designed in 11 different room styles, ranging from 1 to 5-bedroom properties.
Each of the villas is built using sustainable, locally sourced materials and has tropical, bohemian-inspired touches like thatched roofs and rustic wooden decor.
Beach Pool Villa Suite
We spent three nights enjoying beachfront living in the fabulous Beach Pool Villa Suite, with direct access to the sea.
This hidden property was everything we could have hoped for and more. As soon as we stepped inside, we had a tasty welcome drink, fresh fruit, cookies, and a refreshing cold towel waiting for us. And that was just the beginning!
The Beach Pool Villa Suite is a spacious 4,338 square feet property with plenty of room for you to move around and make yourself at home.
We were in awe of the attention to detail throughout – from the private infinity pool and outdoor shower to the complimentary minibar stocked with chilled wine, beers, and soft drinks.
The interior was filled with dark rustic furnishings that gave the whole place a homely feel, and it also had some special features like the hidden TV inside one of the suitcases across the bed!
One of my favorite parts of the villa was the huge open-air bathroom, complete with a luxurious bathtub and rain shower. The bathroom was surrounded by lush greenery, giving it a natural and refreshing feel.
We also had our own private deck with sun loungers, daybeds, and a dining area, which provided the perfect spot for relaxing, watching the sunset, and listening to the calming sounds of the sea.
5 Bedroom Bayview Pool Reserve
We were also lucky enough to spend some time at one of the 5-bedroom villas, which is the epitome of luxury and privacy.
This property blew me away, and we had the best time checking out all of the marvelous features and amenities that you have access to with a stay here.
This stunning villa spans almost 20,000 square feet and has everything you could possibly need for a lavish vacation. From its own private stream room, private gym, and wine cellar to an entertainment area, waterslide, and private pools – this villa truly has it all.
If you have a bigger family or you’re traveling with a large group, this is the perfect choice as it offers plenty of space and privacy for everyone.
Soneva Kiri Spa
If you’re looking for the ultimate relaxation experience, then head to the Soneva Kiri Spa. This wellness center has so much to offer, including a yoga area, a therapy pool, a gym, a lush garden, and treatment beds perched right on the sand.
The main area consists of 8 rooms that can cater to two people at a time and are designed for a peaceful spa experience. The treatments available range from massages to facials and scrubs, and they also have treatments available for children, so the whole family can enjoy some pampering.
Unfortunately, we didn’t have a chance to try the spa during our stay but that’s just one more reason to return to Soneva Kiri in the future!
To make the most of Koh Kood’s solitary location, Sovena Kiri has installed an onsite observatory to allow guests to do some star-gazing during their stay.
This was one of our most memorable activities in Koh Kood, and the resort’s astronomer really brought the entire experience to life. We had a bit of a cloudy weather but we were still able to see Jupiter and Saturn, as well as some other constellations.
On a clear day though, you can easily spot the Milky Way and if you happen to visit during a full moon, you can even see the moon’s craters and mountains! The astronomer showed us some pictures she had taken of the moon and it truly was a sight to behold.
One of the unique experiences at Soneva Kiri is enjoying a movie night under the stars at their open-air cinema.
Cinema Paradiso is set in a secluded spot in the jungle, surrounded by trees and sounds of nature. You can relax on cozy cushions surrounded by candles and lanterns and watch a movie from a screen placed inside a scenic lagoon.
This auditorium shows screenings every Monday, Thursday, and Saturday, but you can also book a private showing if your stay doesn’t align with these days.
The Den is a kids’ club like no other, and it’s sure to keep your little ones entertained for hours on end.
Inside this manta ray-shaped play area is a collection of different rooms, including a library, an arts and crafts hub, and a space for music. With a focus on nature and sustainability, the Den also has a range of activities that will teach children about the environment in a fun way.
If this wouldn’t be enough, the children are looked after by highly trained staff who will make sure they have a fantastic time. Soneva Kiri is truly one of the most family-friendly resorts we’ve ever stayed at and this is just one of the many reasons why.
If you’re craving some beach time, head to South Beach where you can soak up the sun and enjoy a variety of water sports.
Soneva Kiri offers a wide range of motorized and non-motorized water sports, such as kayaking, water-skiing, and paddleboarding.
Between the immaculate white sand and endless palm trees, the whole beach is just stunning. After the sun goes down, campfires, fairy lights, and outdoor screens light up the entire beach.
There’s also a restaurant and a bar at South Beach, so you can enjoy a meal or a refreshing drink while taking in the beautiful surroundings.
I can think of very few resorts that offer the same range of experiences that Sovena Kiri does. There really was something for everyone, and our barefoot guardian gave us a breakdown of what each activity entailed to help us narrow down our must-dos.
One thing I was particularly struck by was the amount of different dining experiences we had to choose from. We had a tough time deciding between the sunrise breakfast on the jetty, the seafood BBQ at a local village, and the moonlit dinner on the beach.
Beyond the foodie outings, there were diving tours, rainforest excursions, cooking classes, and visits to remote beaches, to name a few.
Below are some of our top picks from the experiences we went for.
You know you’re staying somewhere special when you have the option of getting your breakfast served up to you in a floating basket right from a private pool.
We tucked into a feast first thing in the morning, munching on the likes of freshly baked pastries, tropical fruit, omelets, and pancakes. If you fancy going all out, you can even add a bottle of champagne to your breakfast!
There were also lunch and afternoon tea servings available, so you won’t have to miss out on mornings when you’d prefer to sleep in late.
As much as we loved the floating breakfast, I think the treepod dining was even more exceptional. This is one dining experience I don’t think will ever be topped!
Nestled amongst the tropical rainforest is a bamboo pod that overlooks the sea, and our waiter served us up a delicious picnic here via a zipline!
You can choose between a one-hour long Gourmet Picnic or a two-hour long Luxury Picnic which can also be combined with champagne or prosecco tastings.
Whichever you choose, you’ll get to indulge in a selection of delicious delicacies while taking in the stunning view from above. I can’t recommend this experience enough!
Koh Raet Snorkeling
I always love a good a snorkeling tour, and this excursion to the nearby private island of Koh Raet certainly didn’t disappoint.
This is where you can find Soneva Kiri’s solar reef garden, and the resort has been working closely with marine biologists to regenerate coral reefs in this area.
We got to snorkel around these gardens and see all sorts of vibrant fish, corals, and other sea creatures.
One of the coolest things we got to explore was the group of sunken sculptures, which included an elephant, a dog, and a tiger. This was definitely a unique and unforgettable snorkelling experience that I would highly recommend!
Koh Kood Discovery
As heavenly as the Sovena Kiri resort is, we loved getting to discover other parts of Koh Kood during our stay, too. The Koh Kood Discovery tour was one of the highlights of our trip!
During this afternoon trip, we got to visit Khlong Chao Waterfall, which is the island’s biggest and most scenic waterfall. It was really incredible to take a refreshing dip in the natural pools here and just soak up the beautiful surroundings.
We also got to spend some time at Klong Chao Beach, where we were blown away by the crystal clear waters and soft, white sand. This tour is well worth doing if you want to explore more of what Koh Kood has to offer beyond the resort grounds.
When we settled into our villa, our barefoot guardian ran through all of the different eateries Sovena Kiri has onsite, and we immediately knew that we wanted to try as many of them as we could with the time we had.
From international buffets and cliff-side restaurants to snack bars dedicated to the likes of chocolate, ice cream, and cheese, we didn’t know where to begin.
Here’s a quick overview of the different dining options available at the resort.
- The Dining Room: This is the resort’s main dining restaurant that serves up buffet-style meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
- The View: Perched on a cliff-top with panoramic views of the sea, this fine dining restaurant is perfect for special occasions or romantic dinners. The menu features Nikkei cuisine, a fusion of Japanese and Peruvian flavors.
- Kruua Mae Tuk (Tuk’s Kitchen): This restaurant offers authentic Thai dishes that are made with local ingredients from Koh Kood and Koh Chang. The outdoor seating area is also a great spot to enjoy the sunset.
- So Spirited: This cozy poolside restaurant and bar serves up a variety of snacks, light meals, and refreshing drinks. It’s the perfect spot to grab a quick bite during the day or enjoy a cocktail in the evening.
- South Beach: If you’re looking for a more casual dining option, South Beach is the place to go. This beachside restaurant offers a range of international cuisine and seafood dishes, as well as a bar for drinks.
- Colors of the Garden: Located in the resort’s organic garden, this restaurant offers a plant-based dining experience with dishes made from freshly picked ingredients. It’s a must-try for any vegetarian or vegan guests.
- Down to Earth: This unique six-course dining experience is inspired by ancient Maharajahs and features dishes made from organic, locally sourced ingredients.
- So Guilty & So Chilled: These are probably two of the most dangerous rooms in the resort for any sweet-toothed guests. So Guilty offers a variety of chocolate treats, while So Chilled features homemade ice cream and sorbet. Both are open 24/7, so you can satisfy your cravings any time of the day.
With so many dining options to choose from, we were always spoilt for choice. We loved getting to try different cuisines and dining in various locations throughout the resort, each providing a unique and unforgettable experience.
We managed to make our way through quite a few of the onsite restaurants, and I’ve detailed our experiences below.
The Dining Room
When we weren’t treating ourselves to floating breakfast baskets, we spent our mornings at The Dining Room sampling a range of both healthy and indulgent dishes.
There’s a buffet section offering a selection of freshly baked pastries, fruits, cereals, and yogurts. On the other hand, there’s also an à la carte menu with dishes like eggs benedict and waffles.
The options here were endless, and you could easily try something new every day of the week. I usually went for eggs, fruits, and pastries, but there was plenty of choice no matter what you fancied.
We also had dinner on our last day here, and it was just as impressive as breakfast. There were different stations offering a variety of international cuisines and a wide range of seafood dishes.
The atmosphere was bustling and lively, with plenty of options to please even the pickiest eaters. Overall, it was a fantastic dining experience that we would highly recommend.
This cozy poolside restaurant was our go-to for lunch during our stay. The restaurant is kitted out with comfortable couches where you can nibble on light bites like salads, sandwiches, and burgers.
While the vistas from So Spirited are undoubtedly its biggest selling point, the food is also fantastic. We tried a range of dishes, including salads, quesadillas, and pizza, and they were all delicious!
The service was also top-notch, and we always felt relaxed and well looked after while dining here. Plus, being able to enjoy our meals poolside with a view of the ocean was definitely a highlight of our trip.
We couldn’t come here and not enjoy at least one of our meals at South Beach’s seafront restaurant, where the tables are set up right on the sand and just steps from the water.
The tables are all equipped with an umbrella, so you can enjoy the beach without getting too hot in the sun.
BBQ classics and smoothies are what they do best here, so be sure to sample some of their fresh seafood and char-grilled burgers.
Something else I appreciated was how South Beach is a Wi-Fi-free zone, which made us feel totally immersed in our surroundings.
Kruua Mae Tuk
Also called Tuk’s Kitchen, Kruua Mae Tuk was quite possibly my favorite restaurant at Sovena Kiri. Considering how delectable the food was throughout the resort, this is a testament to the high standards here.
Working from an ever-changing, seasonal menu of local ingredients, Tuk’s Kitchen serves up multiple courses of traditional Thai dishes in a bamboo-style dining room on the water’s edge.
We were treated to a Thai spicy seafood salad, red curry chicken with vegetables, steamed fish with lemongrass sauce, and many other amazing Thai dishes. It was a truly memorable dining experience that we won’t forget anytime soon.
For those of you dreaming of a romantic sunset dining experience, look no further than The View.
This one’s for the foodies out there, as The View’s eclectic menu is filled with a fusion of Japanese and Peruvian cuisine. Trust me, it’s just as fabulous as it sounds!
Having heard rave reviews about the tasting menu here, this is the option we went for, and we were so glad we did. Each dish was so distinct, yet every course blended together so well.
The presentation was also spot-on, with each dish beautifully plated and served with a smile. We enjoyed our meal while watching the sun dip below the horizon, making for an unforgettable evening.
So Guilty & So Chilled
If you have a sweet tooth like me, So Guilty and So Chilled will be your paradise. So Guilty offers a range of indulgent chocolate treats, while So Chilled serves up homemade ice cream and sorbet in a variety of flavors.
Both rooms are open 24/7 so it’s quite dangerous for those with little self-control! We couldn’t resist stopping by here multiple times during our stay, and we highly recommend trying the handmade chocolate bonbons and macarons at So Guilty.
After our stay at Sovena Kiri, we can confidently say that it’s one of the most incredible resorts we’ve ever been to. From the stunning villas and endless activities to the delicious dining options and top-notch service, everything was beyond our expectations.
If you’re looking for a truly luxurious and unforgettable vacation, Sovena Kiri is definitely worth considering! Whether you’re planning a honeymoon, a romantic getaway, or a family vacation, this resort has something for everyone.
So don’t hesitate to book your stay and experience the magic of Sovena Kiri for yourself!
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