"Pretty close to paradise."
My husband and I stayed 15 Nights at Dusita, and loved it. The longer we stayed the harder it was to leave.
It took us a long time to choose a place to stay on Koh Kood, and only after several hours of reading Trip Advisor Reviews was Dusita Resort the place we chose. Our primary selection criteria was price and a nice beach. Most of our expectations were met in full, but the beach isn't as pristine as Koh Samet or Koh Samui which have long-stretches of silky sand. However, on the island there are some beaches of that quality, in particular Haat Ngam Kho Beach (Tinkerbell Resort is on this beach) is a fifteen minute walk from Dusita. Though the beach at Dusita is better than many resorts on the island and definitely inviting to swim in. In fact we swam there at least once a day!
In this review, I am adding some additional details of the differences between the bungalows and cottages offered, and some photos of each:
1. Cottages: We stayed in one of the newer cottages. As far as we could tell, they currently only have three: #14, 15, and 16. The cottages are significantly larger than the stand-alone single bungalows, which is great for a couple as the beds are pulled together, making into a king. The bathroom is fully enclosed within the cottage, with a real door and full wall. The cottages have some nicely made shelves for storing your belongings, and all the bungalows and cottages have a refrigerator. There is a back deck for hanging wet towels and clothes, although really no good place to dry wet clothes outside if it rains. The cottages and bungalows have A/C option which you pay more for and a good working fan. From what we could tell, it looks like all the bungalows have good screens on the windows, however the cottages don't. All of the units have mosquito netting. We paid 1800 THB for our cottage w/ A/C while our next door neighbors both went with the fan option and were saving significantly.
All the cottages and bungalows are on the ocean facing the courtyard. They all have a good view of the ocean and beautiful swaying palms, except for the first cottage (#14). #14 has the most obstructed view of the ocean, but you can still see it. We stayed in #16 and it had a great view, #15- still good but not as good as #16.
2. Single/Couple Bungalows: Small but cute bungalows for 1-2 people. The biggest difference between the cottages and single bungalows, besides price, is size and the overall design. We were going to book the bungalow initially but since we were staying a long time we figured the extra space would be good so we opted for the cottage. However, the bungalows are quite nice. They are perched up a bit higher than the rest of the cottages and family bungalows, and have a sweet functional deck in front. They have an outdoor bathroom so you could have an unexpected but friendly visitor such as a frog, as our friends did. The main draw back for a couple is the bed is more like a double-queen size and it's pushed up against the wall. As opposed to the cottage, the bed is more like a king when pushed together and there is still walking space around the bed for both people. I talked to a few couples who stayed in the bungalows and they were happy with it, but one of our friends (a single male) felt it would be too small if he traveled with his wife. There is a significant price difference for all the units if you do not use A/C. If we come again, we'd save the money and stay in a bungalow w/ just the fan. The visitors we talked to seemed quite happy and were not bothered by mosquitos. They were all smiling, having a good time, and not complaining.
3. Family Bungalows: The family bungalows are like a duplex and are closest in size to two cottages placed side by side, but with outdoor bathrooms. They have darker wood inside, less windows, and are older than the new cottages. They share the same roof, and have two nice and functional decks in front for easy visiting, drying clothes, or just hanging out if the rain comes. The family bungalows each have outside bathrooms but one is on one side and the other in back so good for privacy. They are nicely enclosed by some decorative rock and shell inlaid cement walls. A potential drawback to staying in one of the family bungalows would be the possibly of getting a noisy neighbor on the other side. This wouldn't be a problem if you were traveling with another couple, friends, or family and then rented both sides.
Per the tourist map, Dusita Resort is located near quite a few other resorts, however it doesn't feel that way. The roads are rural, windy, and hilly so it takes some effort to walk to the other resorts. Dusita is run by a friendly Thai family, a few speak some English, although limited. The food is good, although a bit more expensive than finding a local eatery, which is true of most resorts. The servings were on the small size as well. They have a little store on site where you can purchase a few things, such as water and beer.
1. Lovely cottages and bungalows right on the ocean.
2. The grounds at Dusita are truly beautiful and quite peaceful, with tall and healthy swaying coconut palm trees and golf course short grass. The seating area in the restaurant is separated by little open bungalows to enhance privacy. They have a little area where they have hot water all day long, free tea bags and instant coffee, dried creamer, and sugar. Until 12 p.m. every day they provide free white bread and a grill so you can make toast. Jam and butter is also available at no cost.
3. There are descent size mini-refrigerators in the rooms, and they provide 2 glasses and 1 plate. Housekeeping is every other day. Bedding, pillows, and mattresses are comfortable and of a high quality, but no top sheet which is common in Thailand. They provide fresh towels and bedding, and two complimentary waters each time. The floor stays wet for a while after showering or having it cleaned, but the fan in the room works well for getting it dried (at least for the cottages. The bungalow outdoor bathroom/shower stays wet if it rains).
4. We snorkeled nearly daily right in front of the resort, although to see larger fish you need to go out a ways because the water is pretty shallow initially. We were so content with our daily snorkeling experience we never paid for a snorkeling tour, although if snorkeling is your thing and need to see lots of fish you may not be as content as we were. There were always some colorful fish of some type to see, enough for us. Some days we were both thrilled to find a school of 50-100 medium-sized yellow fish.
5. Clean, clean, clean. The housekeeping staff are very thorough and diligent in keeping the rooms cleaned and the grounds looking great.
6. Dusita Resort seems to attract a great group of travelers from all over the world. We made several new friends.
1. There is no internet at the resort, which was a bummer for us. (See travel tips for more comments).
2. Besides having a bathroom in each of the cottages/ bungalows, there are some shared bathrooms near the restaurant off from the main courtyard. However, they are only Thai style which I found a bit disappointing. Other resorts we visited had clean western style toilets for public use. The one's we visited were nicely decorated with shells, and a nice sink. This would certainly enhance Dusita if the owners decided to do this, even converting just one or two of their public bathrooms would be a great.
3. The beach in front of Dusita is beautiful, although as a person who has tender feet I would rate it a 7/10 in comparison to Koh Samui and Koh Samet. Depending on high or low tide, there is often four feet of little sharp shells and broken coral pieces you need to dodge before you can stroll in the sandy and clear tropical water. Other resorts on Koh Kood we visited raked their beach regularly or created an easy place for guests to enter. Once in awhile I'd see someone raking, but usually not. If Dusita ever decided to keep up the beach better it would really enhance the beach experience for visitors. But saying this, it is certainly nice when you're out there, and the little extra effort it takes isn't really a big deal. Several of the other resorts have even more rocks, and big ones, compared to Dusita.
If Dusita had a perfect white sand beach, internet access, and a western bathroom option for their public restrooms, a 5-star rating would be easy to give. But as my title says... it's still pretty darn close to paradise. If we return to Koh Kood, we'd be very happy to stay at Dusita again.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC