10 September 2012

The house and how we found it

Ok, let's write a few words about the house hunt. We wanted to settle on the west side of Koh Phangan, as it is the calmer side, meant for people who want to relax, do yoga, dive. The south side is meant for party people, as it is closer to Haad Rin, where the infamous Full Moon parties take place, and to the other party locations (Half Moon, Black Moon, Jungle Experience...), which take place in Baan Tai or in the jungle a few kilometers inland from Baan Tai.

There are lots of houses for rent all around the island. We contacted a few housing agencies, but didn't end up taking the house from them in the end. Word of mouth works the best: it pays off to go diving/doing yoga and asking the staff if they have any tips. There are also loads of "house for rent" signs all around, just rent a scooter (ca. 200 baht a day), drive around and go and ask. Often there are only phone numbers that you need to call and hope that the call is answered by someone who speaks English. After Indonesia it's been a small shock to realize that the people here really don't speak English all that well. Better get those Thai lessons started...

The houses are relatively cheap. You can find a basic bungalow with a fan and perhaps wi-fi (which isn't often very reliable when it's windy/stormy...) for under 10 000 baht (250 euros) a month. Most of the "normal" bungalows (one bedroom, kitchen, balcony/terrace) cost ca. 12 000 - 16 000 baht (300 - 400 euros). If you want luxury, be prepared to pay over 20 000 baht. The layout of the normal Thai style bungalow isn't what us westerners are used to: the bedroom is usually a separate small room, as is the kitchen. Often the bedroom and kitchen are accessed via separate doors from the balcony. So there is really no living room as such, as the balcony is often the coolest place and the nicest to hang out in. Most of the houses don't have very big windows either, so they are quite dark.

We managed to find something a bit different, however. A staff member at Haad Yao divers told us of a house that she had gone to see but couldn't take as she has a dog and the family who rents out the place has very territorial guard dogs. But she had fallen in love with the view from the place: the house is high up on the hill between Chao Phao and Srithanu and it's laid out like a western one-room apartment, with a small kitchen in the corner. All within the same space, and with nice, big windows and a lovely balcony. It is a bit on the small side and doesn't have air con, but given that we didn't want to spend much over 20 000 baht a month on the apartment, and that the house is so high up on the hill that there is almost always a refreshing, cool breeze, we decided to go for it. We've signed a contract for 3 months (or a "Rental contraction", written in hilarious English, for example allowing us to "make soft party".), so we're going to stay here at least until the middle of December. By then I'm sure we'll know of this is indeed our dream island, or if we'd like to try our luck somewhere else.

Oh, photos, I hear you say? Well, here they are:

Sea AND lake view! Not bad...

Living room. There will be a hammock in the corner, of course

The welcome committee

1 comment:

  1. Eiiii, mikä kesämökki! Ihana! Ja koiravieras! Te ette ehkä tuu sieltä ikinä takas...