Samui Wining & Dining
Invited to Indulge

Call in and spoil yourself – dining like a deity at Silavadee.

Interestingly, the reception area is deliberately compact and low-key, giving no clue as to the scale and quality of what lies beyond. But the focus of this story is the restaurant. And to this end, you can bypass the stunningly appointed private pool villas – seven different forms of them – and the lavish room-suites with their Jacuzzis. Oh, did I say ‘restaurant’? A slip of the tongue. I meant ‘restaurants’ plural. Because here, at Silavadee, there are no fewer than four of them.

Again, this is another cunning piece of layout and design, because three of them are effectively all together in one block. But you won’t realise this – not unless you go out, right down to the beach and look back up. And you won’t have to walk there either; just tell one of the reception staff you want to go to ‘Moon’ restaurant and an electric buggy will appear to glide you away.

Moon is an essay in cool wood: the glare of the outside sunshine melting comfortingly into the air-conditioned cocoon of a large timbered room, with a whole wall of glass at the end. Pleasantly, the seascape here is anything but bland – the usual strip of pale sand being punctuated by the huge boulder outcrops that characterise this part of the island.

Call in and spoil yourself – dining like a deity at Silavadee.)And down below is something simply splendid. This is ‘Sun’. It’s partly a sun-terrace, yet with food and drink incorporated. Enticingly, a fringe of sun loungers are actually in the shallow edge-waters of the glassy infinity pool, fringing a more-obvious dining terrace, set with chairs and tables. There’s also a wooden deck out on the rocks, popular for evening dining. Plus (and why don’t more resorts do this) there’s a lovely little tropical thatched bar with a ‘sipping ledge’ – you can drift across in the pool and anchor yourself to a leisurely Martini, still in the pool but without needing to tread water.

At this point it has to be said that, attractive as Sun and Moon are, in the main they cater for the daytime guests of the resort. Most guests from outside are evening diners. And that’s where the top floor comes into the picture. This is ‘Star’, a simple yet almost surreal layout of geo-sculpted dining spaces, warmly under lit and fringed with deep loungers. It’s completely open to the sky, and it’s bordering on a spiritual experience to be there as the last pinks of the evening sky turn to an indigo and violet that’s spangled with stars.

P8-9-(3)But I’ve left the best until last, and that’s the resort’s signature Thai restaurant, ‘The Height’. And it’s a lot easier to enjoy the experience of actually being there, than it is trying to describe it! It’s actually on three compact levels, spread over separate decks, with a short central stair dividing the top two rooms. These are essentially cubes of glass, air-conditioned and with a stunning seascape. The wooden deck below has a broad open terrace that adjoins another dining area with a front wall of opening doors. And there’s a cigar lounge and bar one deck below this. The menu here is what’s known as ‘high Thai’, meaning that not only have many of the dishes originated from the royal kitchens, but there are selections from each of Thailand’s four regions, a lot of these being less common and hard to find.

“The key element here is the quality of the ingredients,” explained Khun Wat (Vibool Kerdnat), the resort’s Food and Beverage Manager. “Very few Thai restaurants use imported meat – from Australia or New Zealand – for their dishes. Canadian lobster. Lean Wagu beef, too. The difference in flavour and texture is immense. Even our duck is imported from America. Plus we don’t use the little prawns you usually see, here it’s tiger prawns. And you’ll also find that the menu contains not only the favourite dishes that everyone loves, but also a selection of more contemporary offerings. You’ll see the moon rise up from the sea right in front of you. It’s very secluded and intimate here, and popular with visitors celebrating birthdays or anniversaries.”

There’s actually a lot more happening at Silavadee’s restaurants than there’s room to detail here – the unique cocktails and tapas, the ‘Taste of Siam’ buffet with everything cooked on the spot for you, the ‘Romantic Dining’ in your own private candle-lit canopy – every month there’s a new feature. And the best thing of all? You are cordially invited to come and indulge yourself – any time at all!

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Rob De Wet


 


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