Thailand, September 2023: The humble coconut is ubiquitous on Koh Samui Island, which is often referred to as “Coconut Island.” While history traces back to cotton once being the main source of income for the locals, coconuts arrived on the island in the 1800s with the Hainanese traders who discovered it as a haven in the Gulf of Thailand for Chinese and Malaysian sea traders. A symbol of flourishing trade for Koh Samui, coconuts are honoured in every way at Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui – from food and drink, to spa therapies and souvenirs.
Traditionally, locals on the island collected fresh coconuts from the sky-high palms using monkeys, and guests see this little simian honoured across the Resort in the form of quirky statues. The first greeting as they enter the Resort is a statue of monkeys with their hands folded in the traditional wai.
At Koh Thai Kitchen, there’s a tribute to the palms with a special take on a Thai favourite. ”If it’s your first time in Thailand, I would recommend you try the som tam (papaya salad). And, if it’s your first time on Samui, the palm heart salad is a must,” says Chef de Cuisine Sumalee Khunphet. A localised version of som tam, the palm heart salad is a special dish featuring locally sourced tender coconuts.
For Your Sweet Tooth
The home-made coconut ice cream crafted by Fabien Casalino, the Resort’s Pastry Chef, is a must-have too. Whether on its own or with a side of mango sticky rice, the burst of flavours are unmatched.
“There’s no such thing as too much coconut when you’re on this island,” smiles Fabian, “All good things start with C – coffee, chocolate and coconut! Begin your morning with our coconut french toast and coconut yogurt.”
At CoCoRum, the Resort’s poolside bar, views of the 50 metre (165 foot) long infinity lap pool surrounded by the private bay and swaying palm trees are enhanced by the innovative cocktails on offer. Barkeep Winai Tunkong recommends Pain Killer – a signature rum cocktail paired with fresh coconut milk that is extracted from young coconuts from the Resort’s garden. How’s that for indulgence?
Set deep within the lush tropical hillside, The Secret Garden Spa presents its signature Kala Coconut Massage where smoothened local coconut shells are used for deep pressure massage, highlighted by freshly pressed coconut oil. The Resort’s Director of Spa Kotchaphan Mekloy shares, “We wanted to create a treatment that not only reflects Samui’s history and local ingredients, but one that could also serve as a great souvenir. We have collaborated with a local vendor to create a product line including fresh coconut oil that we use in the Spa for guests to take back as memorabilia from this tropical island.”