The hotel property is very beautiful with a modern-Mediterranean look. Everything bleach-white. The Deluxe villa was very comfortable and well appointed.
Food was pretty good for a resort, especially considering that they have to bring everything in by small boat from the mainland since this is such a small island. The special Thai buffet/Bar-B-Q on Saturday nigh had really excellent Thai food and cute thai dance performances.
Staff seemed a little undertrained and less than happy compared to the other 5-stars we stayed at in Thailand. This is possibly because they have to live on the island in a separate staff barracks near the hotel...so I am sure this makes it hard to attract the top staff. Not bad, just not the quality of some other top resorts.
Our BIGGEST PROBLEM was not within the hotels control and has been mentioned here a lot. It's the day trip boats full of mostly Chinese tourists who literally take over the island between 11:00AM and 3:00PM everyday...the snorkel spots are full of big boats with a bunch of people who can't swim floating around in orange life jackets. The beach in front of the hotel is covered with umbrellas set up by the local muslim families to serve the orange lifejacket crowds with their boogie boards and cameras. If you can just look past this (take a siesta or a leisurely lunch at this time) then the bay in front of the hotel was simply awesome...powder white sand, turquoise water...and in September when we were there some fun waves to play in...not really clean enough for surfing...but good boogie boarding and body surfing. The sunsets are quiet and beautiful. But the beach is small, so you will be sharing it.
The Racha has a floating dock that was set up to receive the transport boat and also all of their delivery boats...when we were there it was on the opposite side of the island, but I hear and see from the pictures that in high season it is in the bay right in front of the hotel. This would have been a real eye-sore in this beautiful bay. As it was in September and there were waves in the bay, there were no boats in our view...making it much more serene and picturesque.
Two standout staff members were Bandid - the assistant manager...he was very good in helping us arrange some complicated travel to the island and giving us nice personal attention, and Tony the food service manager was a great conversationalist and very helpful. He is from the Philippines so speaks perfect english with a great warm and welcoming personality. Most of the other guests were Chinese which I understand is typical for this time of year at the resorts near Puket.
The staff at the dive center was very nice as well...Dove two simple dives with them off a small boat around the island.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located just 12 miles south of Phuket on Racha Yai island, The Racha is Thailand's premier deluxe island hideaway. Set on a pristine white-powdery beach and surrounded by the dazzling turquoise waters of the Andaman Sea, this five star resort features 70 stylish villas offering the ultimate in luxurious comfort, from private pool villas with underwater music, to a very unique 5-storey Lighthouse Pool Villa with an observation deck offering panoramic views around the island. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Racha Hotel Ko Racha Yai
- Racha Hotel Yai Island
- Racha Yai Island
- Racha Phuket
- The Racha Ko Racha Yai, Phuket, Thailand