I think it could be hard to find crystal clear water combined with white beaches in koh samui.... when i went to koh samui first i got really disappointed about the beaches and the water because in my imagination i expected water and beaches like in the carribean. but don´t worry, koh samui is still a great destination to spend wonderful holidays if you stay realistic. and i have good news for you about the palm trees: you will find them everywhere all over koh samui! we stayed at the santinburi resort in maenam beach. i can really recomend the santinburi resort, everything was perfect. it´s quiet there but you still find some restaurants and bars on the beach. if you want to go for more action you just need to take a cab to the next biger village (about 10 mins). if you want more action, maybe the bophut beach is right for you...?
hope you finde the perfect place for your holidays,
wish you all the best,