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“Hated the Tropical Garden Resort”

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Chanalai Garden Resort
Ranked #13 of 56 Hotels in Kata Beach
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Hated the Tropical Garden Resort”
Reviewed 19 January 2009

We booked our stay at Tropical Garden Resort through the recommendations of a travel agent in Bangkok. From the minute that we stepped into the hotel and were greeted by very rude hotel staff, till we left, our experience there was terrible. The room we got had green colored painted walls with shiny red curtains with garish gold mesh sheer curtains over it. The toilet paper had hundreds of tiny insects crawling all over it; when we showed it to the cleaning staff, they just handed us a new roll of toilet paper but didn't do anything else about it. We tried to move to another hotel on our first day but they wouldn't give us our money back and the travel agency was of no help either.

  • Liked — nothing
  • Disliked — toilet paper with hundreds of insects crawling all over it and rude staff
  • Stayed January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank bj81
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
60 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 January 2009

In December 2007 we stayed at the Tropical Gardens Resort for seven days. It was in an excellent location (Kata Beach), as it was a lot quieter than staying in the Patong area (Patong reminded me of Bangkok, but by the sea). The hotel is a one minute walk from the beach, however if you prefer a quieter beach, then you can go left out the hotel, and walk up the really steep hill, and then down a staircase on the side of the hill, and there is a more secluded beach.

I found the staff at this hotel to be extremely friendly, there was always someone at the front desk no matter what time of the day or night it was. We ate breakfast at the hotel every morning, and this was really good. We did not have an all inclusive deal as we preferred to eat food at the local restaurants. Some of these were very reasonably priced and the food was excellent and most of them. I found the hotel restaurant prices to be quite high, so it made more economical sense to eat out.

The hotel was very clean, and the air conditioner was new, and ran silently. Many people have complained about all the stairs in the hotel, but luckily for us we were on the first floor, so this was not a problem for us.

As its name implies, the Tropical Gardens Resort is set in a tropical garden, and it has really beautiful surroundings.

For international phone calls, it would be cheaper to make them from a payphone, however the costs from the hotel are not as expensive as they are in other countries.


Transport around Phuket is relatively cheap. You can either catch a Taxi, or a Tuk Tuk. Before going on the transport I would recommend ensuring you have a set price up front - and you are able to negotiate these prices too.

I would definately stay at this hotel again.

  • Liked — Location, friendly staff
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed December 2007, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank LizaAnn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore
1 review
Reviewed 27 December 2008

Hotel reception staff gave us 5 rooms on the 5th floor and 1 on the 4th, with indication that she will change all to the same level when available. When asked the next day, she just claimed that no rooms were avail. I told her that the guests were checking out of the other rooms, and that was when she told me that hotel rooms were reserved for frequent guests who were arriving that day. This showed that she was not very truthful in the first place when she offered to change rooms for me since she knew that rooms were booked by the frequent guests already. In the course of talking to me, she and her colleagues were laughing and chatting amongst themselves in Thai. There was simply no customer service extended and the warmth of Thai people was simply not felt in this hotel.
Another incident which showed that hotel had incompetent staff was when I was asked to show my receipt some time after checking out of 4 of the 6 rooms. Though the counter staff tried to cover up, it was obvious that she could not recall and had no evidence that I had already paid up. I don't want to imagine what would ensue if I had thrown away my receipt! Late check-out (till 5 pm) of the other 2 rooms was not free despite all the hassle.
BTW, We paid for seaview rooms - 6 rooms in all - only 2 rooms had open view of the sea, the others had partial views (blocked by 2 tall trees). And we saw a snake in the trees along the hillside outside our rooms. Luckily, it was the final morning.

  • Liked — seaview when not blocked by the trees
  • Disliked — hotel front desk staff
  • Stayed December 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Hobc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
canada/australia
Level Contributor
20 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 December 2008

My boyfriend and I stayed here for 20 nights during the end of November. I got a great deal online from hostels.com (cheaper than ANY price I saw on the internet after avidly watching). We paid approx $70 a night including brekkie.

The great:
-Free large bottle of water in room daily

-VERY reasonable mini bar prices (although 7-11 is always your best bet to stock your fridge)

-Room service prices are awesome and have great food. We loved the Homemade Hawaiian Pizza on those nights that we shopped too much ;)

-Nice spacious pool areas. Not busy at all considering we were there in high season. Always a pool chair. Pool bar a bit pricy and cocktails were not that good for the price.

-We had one of the 'two single beds made into a double' but my bf and I actually found we liked this! There were 2 separate doonas and beds were fine/clean. Please note that this is the way Thailand is. We stayed at a 5 star resort on this trip as well and their beds were WORSE and were STILL two singles pushed together.

-Great seaview room. Lovely balcony with comfy deck chairs which we enjoyed a Chang or two on in the afternoon.

-Maids kept the place very tidy and were always happy to say hello. Nothing was stolen or missing.

The negatives:
-TOO MANY STAIRS! We are a young couple in our twenties and even for us (as we had a room at the top) it was such a walk. The elevator helps a bit but seriously if you have had anything to drink or have been walking around all day you DO NOT want to leave your room once you make it up there. This annoyed me as I liked to go out for dinner later at night but we stayed in about 4 nights simply because we did not feel like walking up the steps if we had been drinking. It is just too humid. We found if you stopped at the pool for a swim halfway it was better ;)

-Breakfast was ok. Would not purchase it if it was not included as you can get eggs and bacon/fruit/toast for cheaper than the hotel would charge you in Kata. We did enjoy the omelletes but it is all the same every day so it is a downfall if you stay more than a week.

-To get into Kata you had to walk down a very busy winding road and I would NEVER take my pram down there. Nor would I let my children walk along that road. I almost got taken out numerous times as there is no sidewalk to the main part of Kata. All roads in Thailand are dangerous but this was the worst we seen on our trip. It is a better idea to walk down the beach and cut through to the main center.

-The reception tried to charge me for two blue pool towels that were NEVER placed in our room from Day 1. I thought we had to ask for reception to get one but we had our own so we never bothered. Anyways it was a long ordeal and made check-out take forever.

Overall it was a great location. Good restaurants in the area and most importantly it is very close to the beach. You just cross the road and you are there which I loved. I go to Thailand for the beaches not the pools. I would not pay more than $100 AU a night there. I would probably stay in Patong or Karon my next trip but did enjoy Kata :) Sorry for the length!

  • Liked — views off of balcony, location
  • Disliked — stairs up to room
  • Stayed November 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank canadianbakpak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 November 2008

My family stayed four nights at the Tropical Garden Resort at Kata Beach, Phuket in October 2008. The complex is only a couple of minutes walk from Kata Beach or you can swim in one of two good sized pools at the hotel. We stayed on the very top floor which had a magnificent view of the beach. It did take us two elevators, a ramp, three flights of stairs and a bit of walk to get to our room but by this stage of the holiday I could do with the exercise. One of the elevators continually broke down which made it a bit of a hike to get to reception or down to breakfast. The room was clean, had a balcony and was reasonably priced for Phuket. The room was 3-star and more than adequate for our needs as we tend to spend little time in our room whilst on holidays. I would recommend it for families, people travelling on a budget. or couples. The hotel has an internet room with two pc's and was cheapish. Breakfast was good however do not leave food on your table unattended as the local birds tend to help themselves to it.
Beware Travellers: Many 5-star hotels (Evasson) in Phuket DO NOT include breakfast in their excessive room rates.

  • Liked — Location and value for money
  • Disliked — Accessibilty
  • Stayed October 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank MelbournePanda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
leenadevi
Level Contributor
33 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 November 2008

I spent my honeymoon end of last year at this hotel.

I would say this is an OK place. There are heaps of staircase, but you can always get the hotel staff to bring your luggage up and down. Rooms were spacious, and mine had a pool view.

It is really within walking distance to the beach (you have to cross a busy road to get to the beach anyway). But the beach was great!

If you're driving, parking may seem to be a problem. The hotel is really within walking distance to restaurants, 7-11, money changers, and night markets. The place is less crowded than Patong beach area, for sure.

There were no free wifi or internet access. Breakfast was OK too - not much choices, AC worked fine, the hotel provided 2 bottles of mineral water everyday. Pool towels were provided as well.

The receptionist had problems understanding English. We booked island hopping tour through the agent in this hotel as well - it was located somewhere next to the hotel lift. The lady understood English well and she was able to suggest some pretty good places and even gave us discounts. If you're too tired to "hunt" for island tour packages, try the one from the hotel, I enjoyed the tour so much!

It was really an OK hotel, nothing too fancy about it. Sure enough not for those who does not like to climb stairs. There are lifts available to certain floors.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Limited parking, staircase, breakfast
  • Stayed December 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank babblesbubbles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
switzerland
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 November 2008

The Hotel looks very nice from the outside, it is completely embedded into a tropical garden as the name of the hotel suggests.

Price: I ordered my room through latestays.com and got it at a a quite cheap rate of 1400Baht without Breakfast. Maybe that is the reason my room was not so nice.

Positive:
The exterior is very well kept and makes this resort look really posh. Also the hotel rooms offer various amenities such as Minibar, TV and Safe. Also the spacious balcony that offers a great view over the garden and the ocean is a great plus. During checkin the staff was helpful and my luggage was transported into my room without any complaints. There are 2 pools that seem to be kept quite clean and offer a great view over the beach of Kata. The hotel is also very close to the beach and it is quite silent and peaceful inside.

Negative:
However once inside the room this picture changes completely. The overall room interior is simple and at least 20 years old and the bathroom is just very old and run down. When showering the whole bathroom will be flooded. Also the beds are a bit tricky, when ordering a double bed you will get two single beds that are put together, but beware once you sleep in the gap! You will wake up on the floor. There are lots of stairs in the hotel and you can definetely get lost.

As I only booked my room for 2 nights in the beginning I decided to stay a little bit longer as I was too lazy to switch hotels. I had to sign a BLANK credit card bill form as security. That was the first time ever I had to do that. Also on checkout I had to ask twice to get get that form handed out and destroyed. A friend of mine from Bangkok visited me a couple of days and I had to pay an extra 500Baht every night. No explanation for this behaviour was given. Generally I did not find the people at the reception very friendly, in some cases they were even rude to me. When there are 6 people at the reception talking and the customers have to wait it speaks for itself. When checking out I had to carry my luggage downstairs myself.

Conclusion: While the price was ok and the location as well as the gardens are nice (if you like Kata Beach with its annoying all inclusive tourists) I will not stay at this hotel again and also do not recommend it: Unfriendly staff, strange payment behaviour, old rooms, rundown bathrooms.

  • Liked — the gardens and the location
  • Disliked — the room and the staff at the rececption
  • Stayed October 2008, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank palerider98
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Chanalai Garden Resort

Property: Chanalai Garden Resort
Address: 247 Kata Road, Kata Beach, Kata Beach, Karon, Phuket 83100, Thailand (Formerly Tropical Garden Resort)
Phone Number:
Region: Thailand > Phuket > Karon > Kata Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Kata Beach
#12 Luxury Hotel in Kata Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Chanalai Garden Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 206
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ideally located on the small peaceful beach town of Kata, the Chanalai Hotels and Resorts offers the three elegant different hotel styles, depending on your budget and taste namely: Chanalai Garden Resort overlooks the Andaman Sea and offers an environment that helps you escape your everyday cares. Chanalai Garden Resort, a four-star sea view resort, located on the small hill over looking the Andaman Sea and a minute walk to the beach.Retreat your self with sea sun sand on tropical island of Phuket. Just one block from Kata Beach, the resorts easily access to the nearby shopping areas and natural tourist spots on the island. Only 25 mins to Phuket and Patong and 15 minutes away to Promthep Cape,the most spetecular sunset view point on the island.The resort is outstandlingly located on the lush tropical foliage hill side overlooking Andaman Sea and just 200 metres away to Kata beach.Varied choices of eateries shopping,diving shop,surfing shop and some tourist spots close by ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tropical Garden Hotel Kata Beach
Tropical Garden Kata
Tropical Garden Resort Phuket
Chanalai Garden Resort Phuket/Kata Beach

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