The Magic of Nature: Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui
Committed to maintaining the natural landscape of the Samui coastline, Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui has been careful to preserve and enhance the foliage and tree-cover that is native to the soil. “Along a steep cliff-face at water’s edge, it is critical to retain the interlacing roots of the trees and plants so that the top-soil is not exposed and washed away during the rainy season,” shares Thada Whasagool, Chief Gardener.
At the Resort, guests can explore the twisting tracks that crisscross through lush tropical foliage, maintained in its natural state with trees growing through villas and other facilities to maintain their natural track. “This was an old orchard with 856 coconut trees – all of which has been retained,” smiles Whasagool, commenting on the maverick design and landscaping by the renowned Bill Bensley. Leaving a minimal footprint through the dense tree cover, Bill Bensley’s long-standing relationship with the tropical beauty of South-East Asia and his expression of merging with the landscape has been a pioneering aspect among landscape artists in the region.
From Farm to Plate
Sustainability is core to the concepts at various outlets. Organically grown ingredients, locally sourced foods and native variety of herbs and seasonal fruits remain at the heart of the Resort’s Food and Beverage. “Our chefs at Pla Pla and Koh Thai Kitchen maintain strong relationships with their local farm and fishing suppliers and support them to be responsible and reduce wastage at harvest time,” says Hannes Schneider, Resort Manager. Preferring to invest in the local where possible, the Resort has identified a multitude of Thai businesses that follow sustainable practices and employ locally to partner with in transport and packaging of our food and spa products. Another key aspect of the Resort’s sustainable approach is the herb garden near The Secret Garden Spa, home to variety of herbs and vegetables such as holy basil, cherry tomatoes, parsley, makrut lime, lemongrass and more, supplying hand-harvested ingredients for use in the spa and restaurants.
“The Resort is Green Hotel Standard Gold Certified, and stands committed to a conscious environmental footprint,” adds Schneider. Guests are encouraged to reuse linens and towels, which are typically replaced every third day, unless otherwise requested. Single use plastics have been eliminated, and water is filtered and bottled in-house for guests and staff alike. “Apart from this, each of our guests may join our efforts to go green and join our initiative to plant native tree saplings in our expanding ‘seaside jungle,’” he smiles.
The Constant Gardener
For guests at the Resort, the experience of tropical greenery is immersive in many ways and the abundance of foliage and nature around them is truly therapeutic. “Our garden staff are passionate about their role,” says Whasagool, “To keep the Resort glowing and fresh with beautiful gardens, plants, and trees is an enormous effort and every member of the gardening team is appreciated for their commitment!”
Seasons and Subtilty
The natural world is majestic for many reasons and not the least is its immense complexity and diversity. The range of plants and animals that together comprise what we call a natural environment are impossible to list or consider even for a lay-person. “Connecting with this all-encompassing resource allows us to appreciate it in its entirety – from the bird calls in the morning and the crescendo of the cicadas before the rain, to the little bees and caterpillars that frolic amid the bushes,” says Schneider, “There is so much to see and appreciate at the Resort. Staying mindful of this wondrous aspect of nature is a gift in itself, and we hope to showcase it in its finest for our guests during every season through the year.”
Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui, Thailand