Samui Wining & Dining
Lunch with a View

A fantastic menu to match the fantastic view at Santiburi Country Club.


8Samui has more to offer than just stunning beaches and white sand. While it isn’t known for its mountains, it is quite easy to get up high and enjoy some breath-taking views of sweeping hills covered in swaying palm trees, which roll all the way down to the azure waters that you’ve left behind.

      Sometimes getting high enough to appreciate these views needs a little help, such as a large off-road motorbike, coupled with a powerful engine and expert driving. But, as you will discover, it can be easier than that. Santiburi Country Club and Golf Course in Maenam, is perched up on the side of a hill, and has a wonderfully smooth concrete road that leads you directly to the clubhouse. It’s an 18-hole championship golf course and is known as one of the most beautiful courses in Asia, and if you’ve been there, you’ll be inclined to agree. On a clear day, from their clubhouse you can see not only sprawling acres of palm trees and manicured greens, but you can also see Koh Tao, Koh Pha-Ngan, Bophut Bay and even Bangrak (and considering they’re located in western Maenam, that’s really quite something).

      The Country Club is easy to find. Just take a left sign-posted turn off the ring-road just before the market in Maenam. Follow the signs (they are clear and plentiful) and soon you’ll be snaking your way uphill realising you’re going to be in for a treat once you reach the top.

      Be warned, the first time you see this view, you might stop breathing momentarily. It’s what a tropical island view should be. Take your time and take it all in, breathe in the fresh air, count the palm trees if you can, marvel at the lushness of the green, and far in the distance, admire the turquoise blue of the sea.

       The clubhouse’s restaurant is square-shaped with two sides completely open to allow a fantastic 270 degree view of the surrounding hillsides. With free Wi-Fi for patrons, you might choose to do a few hours of work before lunch, although your eyes will keep being drawn back to the view. Even though it’s so mesmerising, you’ll find you’re more productive because somehow it has a magical way of clearing your head. Before you know it, lunchtime has arrived and because you’ve got so much work done and are enjoying the view; you decide you’re ready to order some food.

      You’ll have a hard time deciding what to eat. Along with a few International dishes and some hearty sandwiches and burgers, they have a great selection of Thai dishes with prices that are a pleasant surprise. The dishes themselves might all sound like standards, but the presentation is first class.

       You might choose to have the ‘Recommendation of the Week’ from the note on the table. This week it was pad Thai and before you go turning your nose up at this perhaps ‘too common’ dish, picture this. Rather than just delivering a dish of fried noodles, they’ve gone to the trouble of making this dish look beautiful. A fine mesh of fried scrambled egg is draped over the top of the noodles, and the crushed peanuts and bean sprouts are places in neat little piles on the side. Two huge prawns have been skewered by a spring onion which has been placed in the middle of the noodles. It is so intricate, it’s hard to know where to start. You might find it easier to tackle your fresh lemon soda or your cantaloupe fruit shake.

         An hour or so passes as you enjoy your lunch, you really should get going but once again your eyes are drawn back to the view. It’s so calming, so relaxing, maybe just a few more hours work!

         The next thing you know, your stomach is rumbling. It can’t be but yes, it’s already gone 6:00 pm and you’ve done more work in the last eight hours than you’ve managed in the past two days. Well that calls for celebration and conveniently there’s a cocktail menu, and because it’s after 5:00 pm you can make the most of the ‘buy one and get one free’ special. Very reasonably priced considering the accompanying views, you can easily sit back and relax without worrying about busting your budget.

         As you order your cocktail and watch the sky changing colour preparing for sunset, you learn that they serve breakfast here too, from as early at 6:00 am. You have a choice of breakfasts, two hot ‘standard’ breakfasts, a continental breakfast and even a traditional Thai breakfast. Omelettes, eggs (cooked to your liking), sausages, bacon, fried bread, beans, mushrooms, croissants, fruit salad, rice porridge, fruit juices - it’s all here.

         So you sit back, sip your cocktail and watch the slowly fading light across Samui and decide that tomorrow you’ll come for breakfast too.

         And to think, you only popped in for lunch!


Colleen Setchell


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