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Centara Karon Resort Phuket
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Reviews (4,217)
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Reviewed 25 November 2013

Hotel check in was incredibly slow, considering we had arrived at 5.30pm i would have presumed that our room would have been ready....however we had to wait 25 mins whilst housekeeping made it up. Had room service one night and was told the wait would be 30 mins,40 mins later we had to chase it up, only to be told it had just left the kitchen.....it then took another 15 mins...! Food was good but cold, by this point i was too fed up to bother to ask for it to be heated up....i am sure that would have taken another hour! Breakfast was at best average, most days there was something i could eat but i have stayed in places with far better choice and variety. The "free" internet cafe comprises of 3 computers. All i wanted to do was check my e-mails, one day in particular all computers were being used by teenagers on facebook and twitter. I dont have anything against this but they all knew i was waiting, but continued to just browse idly, i had to wait 30 mins to get on and guess what? I was 5 mins and quickly finished so somebody else could use it....my husband happened to return one hour later and one of the computers was still occupied by the same girl who had now been using it for over an hour and had no intention of letting someone else have a go. If you are going to limit free wifi to only three public computers then i think you should have a login page at the start whereby people have to put there room number in and then internet is limited to 15 mins a day maximum. Either that or just give free wifi to all, so you can use your own devices in your room etc. most modern day hotels do this.... On a positive note the bell boys are an asset to the hotel, all are very smiley, welcoming and fo out of there way to help. On the opposite side the reception staff are helpful when they can they be, however most of them speak limited english so most of the time couldnt help as they didnt know what you were saying. We had paid for a sea view and our room was very nice and modern however what we didnt realise is that we would be looking out over an irish pub....most nights they had booming music after midnight and sleep was very hard. I did complain and ask if we could be moved, reception barely understood, promised they would get back to me but never did. I couldnt be bothered to waste more of my holiday trying to get people who speak limited english to understand what i was trying to say so we just put up with it. Public areas like reception could do with a bit of an uplift its quite dark and dreary. Karon, infact phuket, isnt for us. Very over commercialised, tacky and noisy. Hence why we will never return. Would i recommened the hotel? Yes, but dont expect too much....very average property.

Room Tip: Choose a room overlooking the pool as opposed to the sea unless you want to be kept awake from booming music
  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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1  Thank Mccjgw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management77, General Manager at Centara Karon Resort Phuket, responded to this reviewResponded 1 December 2013

Dear Mccjgw,
Thanks for providing a review from your recent stay. I am sorry to read your stay was not per your expectations and your points will be shared with the team. It was a pity to read Karon also did not deliver the perfect Thai location either.
Safe Travels
Darren

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 November 2013

Like other comments about having to leave a deposit when checking in, we were asked to leave 10,000 Baht (1,000 Baht per night) using our credit card and were astounded as the hotel had already been paid for. This is about £200. Well we don't have a credit card so they wanted cash. We refused as what use would 10,000 Baht be when we check out to go home. Instead they kept our passports for the whole of our stay. However, once we has got over this we thorough enjoyed our stay. We had a very large room in the Tropicale area with the most efficient air conditioning I have ever experienced. The two free items of laundry each day was a bonus too. Breakfast was varied with dishes to suit most nationalities (not sure about mashed potatos and veg tho...). The hotel room and grounds were very clean and well maintained. We only ate once in the hotel (lunch) but the price was reasonable. Being in the Tropicale we had one hours free wifi each day but otherwise it had to be paid for. Bit tight really when wifi is free in every bar and restaurant we visited in Karon. I would stay at this hotel again. The location is good, very central and on the whole, staff were lovely.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Thank gaileeep
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management77, General Manager at Centara Karon Resort Phuket, responded to this reviewResponded 1 December 2013

Sawasdee gaileeep,
Thanks for providing a review from your recent stay. Im delighted you enjoyed overall however I am disappointed that providing a cash or credit card garantee had such a negative impact on you and overall stay.
Safe Travels
Darren

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Reviewed 24 November 2013

The resort is centrally located to loads of shops and restaurants. Load massage shops. The swim up bar pool was nice. The staff in the restaurant (breakfast area) are really nice. However, the staff at the pool bar areas and rude and difficult to understand.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Thank oz_munster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management77, General Manager at Centara Karon Resort Phuket, responded to this reviewResponded 1 December 2013

Sawasdee Oz_munster,
Thanks for providing a review from your recent stay. Im pleased you were happy overall however the pool bar staff were not friendly enough.
Kind Regards
Darren

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 November 2013 via mobile

I stayed here with my wife and 3 kids age 2,4 and 8.
This is a great resort for kids as it is away from all the night life of Patong. We stayed here for 9 nights in a cabana pool room. Room size was great, clean toilets and bathroom/ shower. My kids loved the cabana pool, It also had a out door shower.
Garden out front and kids pool with slides just 20 yards away.
After a lot of research I this i chose the right resort. Breakfast buffet was great had a wide choice. Lots of family friendly bars and restaurant as soon as you step out of resort and not to forget massage parlours.
Beach was about a 1-2 mins walk away, but the tides were high so we avoided the beach. Patong is a 20 mins drive away via tuk tuk. There are loads of hotel near by, but after checking the area out I found that this is great location for a family with young children. Yes I would stay here again.
If you have an early checkout i.e. Before 7 am please book taxi the day before as I made that mistake and nearly cost me my flight.
There are no taxi before 6/7 am, the resort also cannot book I had to wait 45 mins for one to come.

Stayed: August 2013
Thank Mo J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management77, General Manager at Centara Karon Resort Phuket, responded to this reviewResponded 1 December 2013

Sawasdee Mo J
Thanks for providing a review from your recent stay. Im delighted you enjoyed your stay overall and I am sorry a taxi was not booked for you. Of course, we can book all transfers in and out at any time for you. I am sorry for the inconvenience.
Kind Regards
Darren

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Reviewed 23 November 2013

Arrived here from Phuket airport using the hotel's transfer service. They were waiting when we landed (our flight was delayed an hour anyway) and we had a good transfer to resort which took over an hour due to heavy traffic.

Arrived at the resort around 7pm and was very impressed with the reception. It looked very grand and staff spoke English. We checked in ok but they asked for a credit card to charge about 100 english pounds to as some sort of security deposit. I had not known they would do this so it was a bit surprising but fortunately I had a credit card as a debit card was not acceptable. Our friends, who had already arrived, had paid this in cash.

We were shown to our room and our luggage followed shortly after. This was where we felt a bit let down. I had booked a king bed and we had a room with 2 doubles. Ok, not a major problem. But being a 5 star hotel the rooms were average at best. I expected them to be plush but they were just ok. Clean and tidy but looking tired. The balcony door had a dodgy hinge which meant it couldn't be shut properly as the door had dropped and so room service left this unlocked every day as the girls clearly did not have the strength to force the two doors together. This meant that we had mosquitos in our room by each evening.

The bathroom shower was not great. It worked fine but was very basic and they had a shower curtain across the bath which was cheap and held up by a curtain rod that was pushed to each end and not fixed, so if you exerted any pressure on the curtain it would fall down.

Otherwise the room was fine but we did get eaten alive every night and bought some spray from a local chemist!

We found room service a bit hit and miss too. The first few days they seemed to forget something each day. We didnt have water replenished the first 2 days then they took the flannels one day and forgot to replace them, another day they forgot to give us conditioner.

All little minor problems but things that I would expect a 5 star hotel to have right.

Otherwise outside of the room was faultless. 3 swimming pools, all lovely and we got 4 sunbeds together no matter what time of the day we went to the pools and no matter which pool we went to. Swim up pool bars were good, all staff friendly and good english.

Breakfast was fine with a broad selection but I did think that food should have been covered on the buffet as quite often the fruit and bread would have flies over it so I only ate things which were covered up.

Free internet access just above reception was good and generally you could always get a computer or just a short wait for someone to finish. It was chargeable if you wanted wifi from room.

We ate at the restaurant one night and the food was fine but otherwise ate out as it was expensive and much cheaper restaurants a minute away!

We used the gym and tennis courts (hot!) and even used the spa after having a massage. I would recommend having a massage as it was amazing and good price (about 20 pounds for an hour). After you can use the hot tub and steam room in the changing rooms which was simply amazing!

We also did the Thai cooking at the hotel which was good. Cost about 25 pounds I think but lasted 3 or 4 hours. Started with a 15 minute trip to a local market that sold everything from meat to fruit and vegetables. Very interesting and you get a guided tour of the market so you know what it is and they buy you things to try if you want to sample bits all in with the price. Then you back to hotel to meet the chef in the main restaurant. Book this a few days in advance as can get busy.

The cooking was fun and the chef very good. Cooked 3 dishes and got to eat them all and make them as spicy as we liked.

Our friends had arrived the same day but at about 11am and upon arrival were told there room would not be ready for 3 hours! To save waiting, they paid an extra 300 pounds to upgrade to a cabana room (the ones with the hot tub). They liked the room and got some other extras but we used the hot tub with them on one day and wasn't impressed. The controls for the hot tub are inside the bedroom so you have to turn it on before going outside and then they jets only stay on for no more than 5 minutes. So then you have to get out and go back inside all wet and turn it back on again. Why are the controls not outside within reach from the hot tub I do not know! Plus, it did not appear to be heated and was quite cold. The cabana rooms have plants growing over the top of the hot tub so the sun doesn't actually reach the hot tub to heat it up. We thought this was a bit poorly planned. Yes it is private but they didn't use it again after that so what was the point.

Outside the hotel there is everything on your doorstep. Shops, restaurants and bars aplenty. Also lots of tour agents, massage places etc. We used a tour agent for 3 trips and found them good value and excellent trips. Our friends had booked with Thompson and their rep tried to sell them the same trips for double the price we got them for outside, using scare tactics saying that they would not be insured and safety etc etc but this was not true. I would suggest shopping about.

The beach was no more than 4 minutes walk from the entrance of the hotel. If I weren't wearing flip flops I could have done it quicker still! There was a market within the temple grounds up the hill, only 5 minutes walk again from hotel, that we found on the Tuesday which was good.

Karon beach was amazing and we were there when they had their festival letting of lanterns along the beach which we managed to participate in. Bath warm water in the sea and glorious sand!

So to sum up, cant fault the staff or the facilities, but the rooms really let it down. If it was a 3 star I would be saying it was amazing but for a 5 star it should be better especially for the prices they charge for food and drinks.

I would expect you can get better rooms for the same price in the area.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Wayne G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management77, General Manager at Centara Karon Resort Phuket, responded to this reviewResponded 1 December 2013

Dear Wayne G,
Thanks for providing a review however you may have the wrong resort. We are in fact 4 star not five star as you make reference too several times. Perhaps you stayed at Centara Grand Resort? In any case I am sorry you did not get the perfect experience whilst staying in Karon.
Best Wishes
Darren

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