Samui Wining & Dining
Nora Beach Resort & Spa completes its make-over.

Nora Beach Resort & Spa completes its make-over.At the very far north end of the Chaweng Beach Road, and just before you reach the summit of the hill that then heads down towards Choeng Mon, lies Nora Beach Resort & Spa. On entering the grand Thai style reception area, you begin to sense a feeling of calmness, and you’ll wonder if you’ve been transported back to the Siam of old. The exceptionally high teak style ceilings and pillars, the ultra-polite and helpful staff and the cosy but spacious lounge and bar area, create a quiet and gentle ambience. This is heightened as you overlook the pool into the luscious green gardens that surround the rooms and villas. The beautiful garden features sky-high palms and a terraced stream that flows through the grounds and over waterfalls into the clear waters of the Gulf of Thailand. The luxurious villas at Nora Beach are very spacious, and are spread throughout the grounds with stunning views of the lush gardens or across the sea. Some of the garden view villas overlook an area around a series of small ponds, creating a calm and tranquil oasis. Great for unwinding and de-stressing if you have just arrived from a busy city or work environment.


The reception and garden areas are impressive, but also misleading! Nora has now completely upgraded and revamped all 113 of their spacious rooms and villas within eight different categories. This beautiful resort now combines a traditional Thai-style exterior with very up-to-date contemporary and luxurious interior designing.


The overall look is clean, white, fresh and modern. Traditional Thai silk and furnishings impart a Siamese flavour, while the modern fittings ensure that guests experience every possible comfort.Nora Beach Resort & Spa completes its make-over. Each room has its own flat-screen TV with satellite access, and the villas and suites have their own DVD players, perfect for a lazy day in bed. All the furniture is new; including beds, wardrobes, sofas, curtains and mirrors. All bathroom fittings have been upgraded, with marble counters, and state-of-the-art showers plumbed in, each having a rain-water attachment as well as the usual shower head.

You can literally shower in the rain, and here is the modern twist ... you can even control the temperature! The new tempered glass walls and large mirrors now allow much more natural light into and around the bathrooms. The villas have outside showers and bathtubs, some even have a Jacuzzi. Having a romantic evening in? Have work to catch up on? You’ll enjoy the new lighting system. You can take control of the lighting and create the right mood, making the light as soft and gentle, or as bright as you wish.


Consistent with its attention to detail during the upgrade period, no area was missed out. The large swimming pool and Jacuzzi right by the beach also received attention by the design team. It might have looked great before, but consistent with the new modern feel, the surrounding wooden deck was replaced by a light grey sand-wash, the overflow guttering is now inset for extra safety and the tiling has also been replaced. Nora Beach Resort & Spa completes its make-over.The most impressive change here is that the once chemically chlorinated water has been removed; now you can swim and cool off in the much healthier, natural salt-water alternative, making it much gentler on the skin, hair and eyes.


In need of refreshment with your cool down swim? Head for the swim-up bar and try one of Nora’s signature ‘Mui’ cocktails – a holiday treat doesn’t get much better than this! Don’t want to get wet? For those who fancy a bite to eat during the day, the pool bar boasts a range of sandwiches, salads and other dishes. You don’t even need to leave your sun lounger. The staff are happy to bring you refreshment as you relax the day away by the pool or under a palm tree.


Prasuthon beachside restaurant hasn’t changed too much, but a lot of thought has gone into making it the perfect place to eat. It opens early, at 6.30 am, perfect for a sunrise breakfast. But don’t worry, it continues until 10.30 am if you are not an early riser. The amazingly varied buffetstyle breakfast has a huge range of options. They cater for many different nationalities, so you’ll find all kinds of fruit, cereals and freshly cooked breads with everything to go with them – from butters and jams to cheeses and hams. Don’t miss the bacon and eggs, the chef will custom cook eggs for you, any style you choose. Speciality teas and coffees are plentiful; you will be spoilt for choice, so enjoy the most important meal of the day!


Prasuthon also offers all-day dining, and is open until 11.30 pm. From sunset onwards, in-house guests and outside visitors head here for the amazing cocktails, dinners and entertainment, all alongside the ocean, with its refreshing breeze and the sound of the waves on the shore. Nora Beach Resort & Spa completes its make-over.The menu is à la carte and features Thai, international and fusion dishes. Every Tuesday evening is Siam Kingdom Thai night, your opportunity to try a variety of mouth-watering traditional Thai dishes. Thursday nights feature East meets West, a special buffet of the chef’s best creations, alongside a Polynesian show.


Want some privacy? Enjoy a private dinner on the beach with a customized evening including personalized menu exclusively for any special occasion. Don’t feel like leaving the comfort of your own room? No problem, all the dishes at the restaurant can be enjoyed in the comfort of your room. Just call from your room to organise. Fancy a nightcap? The lobby bar is the perfect place. Listen to the classical Thai music mingling with the sounds of nature from the surrounding gardens, a great way to end the day. Feeling restless? Head to the fully-equipped, air-conditioned gym, where Nora’s personal trainer will help you devise a personalised work-out program. Fancy some pampering? Wander over to Anodas Spa, open from 10.00 am until 7.00 pm. They offer both Thai and Western style spa and massage treatments in private open-air or air-conditioned rooms.


Nora is proud to be one of the leading wedding planners on the island. They have a team of specialist wedding planners to make your day extra special. The beach area where they set up the wedding venue and reception has also been upgraded in Nora’s makeover, and is kept separate from the main hotel. They offer a Thai wedding ceremony or a tropical beach wedding. Nora Beach Resort & Spa completes its make-over.The Thai wedding ceremony begins with a spiritual binding common to all Buddhist ceremonies and proceeds to the exchange of rings, prayers and a blessing from monks. White beaches, calm azure waters, lush green landscape and swaying coconut palms make for the perfect venue. Nora’s wedding packages organise everything; from floral arches to bridal bouquets, bridal hairstyling and make-up, catering, music, fire shows and wedding cake to sparkling wine. The staff at Nora are trained to pay close individual attention to each and every aspect of each individual wedding, leaving the happy couple to enjoy the most unforgettable day of their lives. Nora really does take the stress out of wedding planning, organising everything including accommodation for you and your guests, all at a fraction of what it would cost overseas.


Nora is named after the traditional mystical dance of southern Thailand. It is hoped that the resort’s service and relaxed ambience will emulate the grace and charm of this ancient art of dance. The resort enjoys a spectacular hillside setting, overlooking a secluded bay just north of the famous Chaweng Beach. Although only a few minutes from the island’s airport and a short drive from central Chaweng, Nora is quiet and private, a cosy, calm and now contemporary oasis, within lush gardens and alongside the gentle ocean.


 Karan Ladd


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