Private villas have become increasingly sought-after on Koh Samui, and the island has seen the emergence of a whole new secondary industry to support the villa rental sector.
Rental companies have started to expand their services beyond a straight search and booking function that benefits mostly guests to also include management and promotion services for owners who prefer to leave all the logistics of having a rental property to a professional agency. For an annual fee, property management companies will include the property in their portfolios and the owners can leave everything from marketing to staffing and maintenance to them.
Personalised catering is another sector that has benefitted hugely from the thriving villa rental industry on Samui. Unlike hotels and resorts, private villas very rarely come with an attached restaurant or cafe, and some villas are located some distance from major commercial centres. Many guests therefore opt for in house meals with a chef hired on a full time or part time basis to prepare local and western food.
Events companies have also benefited from the increase in the use of villas for special functions, whether it is an anniversary, a wedding or a company function. Professional event companies can transform an ordinary villa into the perfect location for any event and also help source additional services such as photographers, entertainment and decorators.
Villas are especially popular for weddings because they offer total privacy and guests can party all night long without worrying about prying eyes or bothering other hotel guests.
In many ways the private villa rental market has transformed the high-end tourism industry on Koh Samui. While renting a villa was for years considered a luxury reserved only for the ultra rich, more and more travellers are starting to appreciate the benefits of having their own private holiday home and the many secondary industries to support this have only made the market even more accessible for owners and guests alike.