Sunday, 10 May 2009

WARNING: A Bophut address is no guarantee of a Bophut Beach location...

Baan Bophut (2nd Left) and the Fisherman's Village looking west

Tripadvisor's ranking based on guest reviews has just downgraded Baan Bophut's position from 10th of 271 hotels in Koh Samui to 3rd of 18 hotels in Bophut. We wouldn't have much cause for complaint if the other hotels listed were in Bophut Beach or the Fisherman's Village, but of the 18 listed, only four are, and one is 10km away.

Unfortunately, as well as being a lovely beach village devoid of girly bars, Bophut is a tambon, or postal district, and it covers much of the north and east of the island including Maenam, Bangrak, Big Buddah, a large slice of Chaweng and almost everything in between.

The endearing scruffiness of Bophut Beach road (Moo 1) belies its reputation for some of the finest eateries on the island

Tripadvisor's new listing policy has enabled some poorly reviewed hotels, that were previously buried way-down the former Koh Samui ranking, to morph overnight into Bophut locations with respectably low double-digit scores. Look closer and you'll note that ten of the eighteen listed have less than 20 reviews between them. Two are not even reviewed. Baan Bophut is not in good company here.

I don't know what's going on, and Tripadvisor has not replied to either of my e-mail attempts to find out. But prospective visitors should note that, not listed, are some great, mainly small, family-run hotels in Bophut Beach - the Fisherman's Village and their location can be verified by making sure they have a Moo 1 street address.

The extent of Bophut Beach - The Fisherman's Village from the pier, looking west

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