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“Excellent, Amazing, Stunning. Fantastic resort!!!!”

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Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi
Ranked #6 of 111 Hotels in Ao Nang
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 23 April 2011

I have been back in England now for a month…. I so wish I was back out there in Thailand!!!! We stayed at the Centara for 1 week in March 2011.

Transfer from Airport:
It was a private minibus transfer for just the two of us and was a little hair-raising at times! It took around 20 to 30 minutes to reach the harbour which gave us plenty of time to get our first sights of Thailand!! The driver was pleasant and helpful.

Transfer from Harbour to Centara:
We arrived at the ‘harbour’ which is really just a cove where all the boats have decided to dock – not really a harbour like you may think. It was really busy with other minibuses, cars, tuk tuks and people, but it was the middle of the day. It was made clear where we had to be so there was none of the worry of ‘Are we in the right place? Is that boat the right one?’ etc. We were helped on to the boat and our 10 min journey to Centara began. Have your camera ready because the scenery along this journey is breathtaking!

Arrival at Centara:
First views of Centara are amazing, the hotel is set into the bottom of these huge cliffs covered in forest. It really is difficult to describe how huge these cliffs really are and the view and the resot is just jaw-dropping.
I was worried about walking along the floating jetty because of some of the reviews that I had read on here, but there was no need… after a couple of steps you get used to the wobble and it really isn’t anything to worry about.

Check in:
You are seated in reception with any other newcomers to fill in the necessary forms. We were told our room wasn’t ready for another couple of hours and that we could change and shower in the gym if we wanted to. We weren’t going to let that ruin our first day (yes we were tired, yes we just wanted to get settled, yes it was irritating…but why let it ruin things?) We did as they suggested and changed into our beachwear and headed for some lunch.

Beach Bar:
We had lunch on the first day in the Beach Bar…. Pad thai – very tasty, Chicken Satay & Grilled pineapple – also very tasty… 2 x Singha Beers… just what the doctor ordered!!! It all cost around £6 which I thought was reasonable. Over the week we found service could be a little slow here which could be irritating, but was ok.

Room:
We paid for a Sea View Jacuzzi Club Room and it was well worth the money it cost – Wow. The main part of the room is the bedroom with a huge bed positioned in the middle so that you have the seaview when you lift your head off the pillow. The seating area is on the balcony which is kept private with blinds on all areas. To the front of the room was the ‘sun balcony’ which has our Jacuzzi and 2 sunbeds. The bathroom was huge with the deepest tub I have ever seen!! Loads of mini bottles of everything you could want and a hairdryer. On a couple of occasions the smell of the drains seemed to invade the room…. It was pretty bad, but wasn’t enough to make us complain to the management or anything. Just get some air in to let it out!! You should keep the inner patio doors closed if you open the main ones to keep insects and monkeys out!
There is a mini bar in the room, but don’t pay those prices. I would recommend on your first night in AoNang you head to a Supermarket and stock up on beer, soft drinks and water as it is half the price of the cost in the hotel!!

Hotel Restaurant:
We used the hotel restaurant for one night only. We had a main course and a drink each and it came to around £50 which is on the expensive side… but when you compare that to 2 mains and 2 drinks in town at around £10 then the hotel is definitely premium prices, but that is exactly what I would expect!

Nightclub/bar:
We made it here once for a drink or two… it is a lovely setting and really nice in there. There was a live band playing everynight. It was a really nice place to relax and chill out.

Beach:
We spent a lot of time at the beach. Instead of sunbeds they have beanbags to collect and drag to your favourite spot …. These were really comfy when you are catching those rays!! The sea was lovely and warm!

Pool:
We only made it to the pool for one afternoon. It is a lovely pool with a Jacuzzi and waterfalls. Most people seem to head for the pool rather than the beach so it did seem quite busy.

Club Lounge:
As part of the room upgrade we have access to the Club Lounge, a small airconditioned room where you could lounge on the sofa’s, use the free internet, have free drinks and food. This is well worth the extra cost as it covered our lunch. We would head into there and have soup, sandwiches, fruit and drinks which was plenty to keep us going till dinner. We also would call in one our way out for the evening for a quick free drink.

Ao Nang:
There are 3 ways of reaching AoNang from Centara, we tried all 3 options and settled on walking the monkey trail to reach town and booking a boat trip home:
Through the low tide:
There was only one day when the sea was out far enough to walk round cove and it was still over knee high. When you are carrying handbags, cameras and holding up skirts and rolling up trousers or shorts it’s not the easiest option!

Boat:
You can prebook a place on the boat to get in or out of Ao Nang. There are limited boats and limited places, we found if you booked the day before you tended to be able to get the times that you wanted. When you get to the harbour you just need to catch a TukTuk into the town centre which costs around £2.

Monkey Trail:
This is quite steep and uneven and by the time you reach the top you will be huffing and puffing a bit!! We probably only came across monkeys a couple of times on the trail and we used it most nights and if we wanted to stretch our legs during the day. I had to use the hand rail to help me along and when the monkeys are out the tend to sit and run around on the rails so don’t be surprised if one runs over your hand!!

AoNang:
We really enjoyed it in the town. There is lots of shopping, good bars and restaurants. I would recommend the Eden restaurant, they have an upstairs terrace where you eat and it is lovely, the food was also fantastic. Beware of the Tailors… if they catch you into a conversation you can’t get away and before you know it you have wasted 30 mins trying to get away from them – great if you want to buy something, but not so great if you don’t want to!

Koh PhiPhi Trip
We did the trip to Koh PhiPhi/Maya Bay trip which was great, but very busy. There are tourists from Krabi and other resorts on the mainland as well as from Phuket and other islands nearby all heading to these beaches, coves and islands so don’t expect to land at a quiet cove. The cove where ‘The Beach’ was filmed was breath takingly beautiful, but you couldn’t take a picture without getting a few hundred tourists in it!!! Koh Phi Phi was also crazy busy, but had a great vibe… I would have liked to stay longer. The speedboat journey back wasn’t the greatest journey… very rough seas!!

Monkeys:
These were the highlight of our holiday! Seeing them on the trail and at the end of the trail on the beach. They are not at all bothered about the people and just carry on grooming each other and playing. Don’t let your guard down though… they will steal anything they can especially plastic bags because they think there is food in them. We saw a young monkey steal a key from someone and as he turned to try and stop it, the adult monkeys scared him away by trying to grab at his legs. He did get his key back when the monkeys had calmed down!
If you spend time on your balcony you can see the monkeys running around on the rooftops of other rooms (usually at breakfast time or early evening). They can take you by surprise when they suddenly appear on your balcony! We had a couple of friendly visits from them!!!
One day, early evening the monkeys came to the beach and made their way from one side or the cove to the other, there were around 50 monkeys parading up the beach... that was an amazing sight!!

All in all I would highly recommend this hotel. It didn’t let me down at all!! I went with an open mind and didn’t expect perfect and it surpassed any expectations I had!! The only downside was that the hotel has outpriced it's amenities... in comparison with other hotels it isprobably the same, but when food and drink in AoNang is so much cheaper you are more likely to spend time out of the hotel!
Loved it!! The location is completely unique and breath taking and as for the monkeys... well they were the highlight of my holiday

Room Tip: Just go, it is fantastic!!
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  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Gayle_Matt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 22 April 2011

we just came back from a honey moon , we stayed there 4 nights .
the place is amizing , the beach is one of the most beautifull i ever seen .
the staff is very freindly and helpfull.
food is great and you have many opttions , i would recomend the jappanase resturant.
the monkey trail it's easy walk and takes about 10 mints .
last thing , i don't know how exactly people here can say that it's not clean are something close to that , the place is just amizing !!!
finally i can't wait to come back !

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank tzur777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 April 2011

We had 10 days in this magnificent resort. Arriving by boat is wondrous.The hotel photos do not do justice to the amazing location. Things got even better when we arrived at our room which had a jaccuzi on the balcony. Lots of bathing watching the sun set. The restruants were varied with excellent food and service. Staff extemely polite, but English is rather difficult for them. I was in seventh heaven visiting their lovely SPA.Special mention to Thomas the general manager and Luke for making our stay so memorable.
Margo & John - Chester.

Room Tip: Not easy access to local shops
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  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank MargoJohn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 April 2011

I have just returned from my honeymoon, and we stayed at the centara for the last 6 nights of our holiday.
We thought it was lovely when we arrived, our room was lovely and all seemed very good.. on the surface anyway.
Our room was not cleaned every day and on one day we left fruit which had been left for us on our arrival in the bin, it was taken out and put back out for us... very odd.
The toilets by the swimming pool smelt constantly or drains and sewage - which was not nice at all, and throughout the day the bin was not emptied, not nice when you are not supposed to flush your toilet paper.
We received a letter the last evening we were staying letting us know the hotel were aware of sickness throughout the hotel, welll we thought nothing of it, until i woke up the next morning, just a few hours before we were due to fly for 16 hours and was taken over with the most awful diarrhoea and sickness.
I was given a wheelchair at krabi airport and bangkok airport and luckily through pleeding they let me fly home, and it was the MOST AWFUL flight home ever, being that ill on a plane was horrific, but all i wanted was to go home.
We were so careful all holiday with what we ate and we washed our hands with snitiser all the time, yet i was still ill, we have beena way for 2 weeks in total across thailand had no sickness whatsoever anywhere else, and we stayed in far cheaper and less luxurious places than this.
This was our honeymoon and we paid far more than we would ever do to stay at the centara, and my holiday was ruined at the end. I cannot even look at my photos at the momentt, because it still makes me feel ill. i was so sick that my husband was frightened how we would even get home, luckily we did.
On the boat out of the resort and onthe plane my husband got talking to some other guests only to discover almost half had been ill whilst staying at the centara.
I have just read some older reviews and am disgusted that there was sickness a few weeks ago and yet we were all still allowed to here, it is a disgrace.
I feel for anyone else that has been ill from there stay here, as it has certainly put me off from ever staying at an exclusive resort and from travelling abroad for sometime, which is just horrible as i was looking fwd to this holiday as it was the most amazing place we had ever ventured.. right now i have to say my dream was ruined by the centara illness.

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank jhollis83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ourmanagement, Manager at Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi, responded to this reviewResponded 21 April 2011

The Centara Management would like to approach the awkward subject of the recent two comments about an illness at our resort.

When we replied to a previous comment just recently we could state frankly and honestly that neither our ‘in house’ nurse nor ourselves had any records of diarrhea etc. However, it is fact that for the last few days some of our guests have reported symptoms such as stomach cramps, diarrhea and vomiting. Very similar to a year ago at exactly the same time of the year – mid April 2010.

We would like to add, that the hotel dismisses any claims that we have been denying this matter and keeping information from our guests. This is simply not true. As a matter of fact we are being very open with our guests and asking them to help us to take all the necessary precautions to prevent further spreading of the virus since the first cases were reported to us.

Nor are we denying that this is the first time that we have had such an illness like this at our hotel. As stated above, we did have a very similar outbreak at exactly the same time last year, (April 2010). However we still do not know the link between these two cases. But, cases in June, July and August last year, which were mentioned in the posting are unsubstantial and can not be confirmed – however, we have to point out that since this has happened before, and people have read about it, every case of diarrhea has been assumed to be related to each other. This is also not the case.

We learned about the Norovirus last year and we took our measures and investigated fully, afterwards. We are going to do the same this time to find out more about the source and the causing of this sickness. All this is done in line with professional companies who are experts in such matters, in order for us to fully comply with international hygiene standards.

For those of our guests who have been affected by this virus, we would like to offer our deepest and sincerest apologies, if we have not yet done it prior to their departure. Once again, we would like to stress and assure everybody that we are doing everything we can to get to the bottom of this situation. As we are writing this, a full investigation is underway at the resort and a deep sanitizing and fogging will start shortly.

Lastly and most importantly, we would like to state for the record, that the general health and safety of our guests is and has always been paramount to us and we are taking this matter extremely seriously. Any queries or worries you may have regarding this matter please contact us directly and we will make sure that all your questions will be answered in full.

Thank you very much
The Management

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 April 2011

Brilliant. Amazing view, lovely hotel and the comfiest hotel bed I have ever been in. Yes it is a bit remote but if you like that which we did then it's brilliant as you can get away from all the people who travel to Thailand and then eat pizza and pie and mash for 2 weeks!
One end of the hotel is a bit like benidorm during the day tho, not the views but the people putting their towels down at 6am and stuffing their face all day. There are even buzzers next to sunbeds so people don't even have to get up to get their chips. If you can walk a little more than 10 yards though the other end is lovely and quiet.
In general it's just a lovely hotel, watch out for the spine fish in the sea though, my girlfriend had one in her foot in the first 2 hours. Hotel staff were excellent though and picked her up and took her to the doctors room on site where it was sorted. My advice is to buy some cheap plastic shoes for swimming, you have been warned as trust me my girlfriend was in tears as they stuck the needle in her foot to get the spine out.
Go here now - it's fantastic and every day the view seemed to get better and better.

Room Tip: Avoid the beached whale end!
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  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank ChrisWhiting77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 April 2011

I travelled to this hotel in March 2011 for 10 days. On arrival the sun was shining but unfortunately it didn't last for long! Southern Thailand was experiencing some of the worst rainfall it has ever had. I have to say I found the hotel staff to be absolutely great especially being a woman travelling on my own. I found that all the staff, particularly during this awful weather, went out of their way to make sure their customers were ok and did their best to try and move any customers who had problems with their rooms leaking. In the circumstances I don't think the staff could have done anymore.

I loved the location of this hotel, it is absolutely fantastic. There were only a couple of small issues that I would comment on, the first one being the monkey trail. I do not like heights but thought I would give the monkey trail a go as so many people had said it was ok. I went over the monkey trail once, never to be repeated again! If you do not like heights, avoid the monkey trail and stick to the speedboat or longtail boat!

I would have to agree with some other comments about the cost of the food and drinks in the resort, particularly the cost of drinks. I feel if the costs were more reasonable people would be inclined to stay and drink and eat in the hotel rather than go elsewhere. I think a little shop on site selling various items of need would be a good idea.

I would also like to comment that I didn't suffer from any sickness problems whilst I was there and I would definitely go back again and hopefully the sun will be shining!

  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled solo
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Thank Nicky1173
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 April 2011

Having recently returned from this hotel for a 7 night stay I am compelled to post a review. Quite honestly we were very happy with this 4 * hotel in terms of service, amenities and comfort. We would however not return as clearly this hotel has a problem with guest sickness. Whether this issue derives from a 'water' problem or 'food' hygiene I cannot comment, but something is serioulsly amiss.

Both my husband and I had varying degrees of sickness and nausea, days after arriving at the centara. We were definitely not the only people to have suffered this. At the time the bug occured we had only eaten at the hotel.

For management to have recently responded to a Trip Advisor posting denying a problem regarding sickness at this hotel is appalling. Having read back through numerous reviews over the last year I only wish I had paid more attention to such comments. The illness totally spoilt a very expensive holiday in what should have been a 'high standard' establishment.

If you still have any doubts just check out postings from August 2010, June 2010, April 2010, May 2010, November 2009 and earlier, of course not to mention April 2011 .Maybe the management should have a look also then stop denying they have a major problem at the hotel.

Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
Thank ele757
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ourmanagement, Manager at Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi, responded to this reviewResponded 21 April 2011

The Centara Management would like to approach the awkward subject of the recent two comments about an illness at our resort.

When we replied to a previous comment just recently we could state frankly and honestly that neither our ‘in house’ nurse nor ourselves had any records of diarrhea etc. However, it is fact that for the last few days some of our guests have reported symptoms such as stomach cramps, diarrhea and vomiting. Very similar to a year ago at exactly the same time of the year – mid April 2010.

We would like to add, that the hotel dismisses any claims that we have been denying this matter and keeping information from our guests. This is simply not true. As a matter of fact we are being very open with our guests and asking them to help us to take all the necessary precautions to prevent further spreading of the virus since the first cases were reported to us.

Nor are we denying that this is the first time that we have had such an illness like this at our hotel. As stated above, we did have a very similar outbreak at exactly the same time last year, (April 2010). However we still do not know the link between these two cases. But, cases in June, July and August last year, which were mentioned in the posting are unsubstantial and can not be confirmed – however, we have to point out that since this has happened before, and people have read about it, every case of diarrhea has been assumed to be related to each other. This is also not the case.

We learned about the Norovirus last year and we took our measures and investigated fully, afterwards. We are going to do the same this time to find out more about the source and the causing of this sickness. All this is done in line with professional companies who are experts in such matters, in order for us to fully comply with international hygiene standards.

For those of our guests who have been affected by this virus, we would like to offer our deepest and sincerest apologies, if we have not yet done it prior to their departure. Once again, we would like to stress and assure everybody that we are doing everything we can to get to the bottom of this situation. As we are writing this, a full investigation is underway at the resort and a deep sanitizing and fogging will start shortly.

Lastly and most importantly, we would like to state for the record, that the general health and safety of our guests is and has always been paramount to us and we are taking this matter extremely seriously. Any queries or worries you may have regarding this matter please contact us directly and we will make sure that all your questions will be answered in full.

Thank you very much
The Management

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi

Address: 396-396/1 Moo 2, Ao Nang, | Amphur Muang, Ao Nang, Krabi Town 81180, Thailand
Phone Number:
Region: Thailand > Krabi Province > Krabi Town > Ao Nang
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Ao Nang
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Ao Nang
#3 Family Hotel in Ao Nang
#4 Luxury Hotel in Ao Nang
#5 Romantic Hotel in Ao Nang
Price Range: £129 - £381 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi 5*
Number of rooms: 192
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hidden away in secluded Pai Plong Bay and surrounded by emerald waters and a luxuriant national park, this five-star beachfront resort is a tropical paradise for those seeking a romantic hideaway or a relaxing stay with their family. The resort instils an air of understated luxury with generously-sized rooms and private villas ranging in size from 72 to 399 square metres and offering the option of garden or ocean views, an outdoor Jacuzzi, or a plunge pool. Designed in modern Thai style, with high ceilings, spacious living areas dominated by wooden accents, stone features and soothing colours, the rooms and villas are calm oases. Accessible by boat only, the resort offers an abundance of opportunities to relax and explore. To name a few: unwind with blissful spa treatments at Spa Cenvaree, savour Thai, Japanese, and International cuisines at one of the four restaurants, enjoy complimentary water sports (kayaking, sailing, paddle boarding – the first hour is free), lounge by one of the swimming pools while the kids are kept busy at the kids clubs, enjoy carefree days on the white sands of Pai Plong Bay. With warm waters with extraordinary underwater visibility, beautiful coral formations and an exotic marine life, the Andaman Sea is a tropical paradise for diving enthusiasts and those with a longing for more holiday thrills. The experts at the resort’s PADI dive centre provide everything that is needed for beginners, those with medium skills, and expert divers. Krabi International Airport is 40 minutes away from Nopparatthara pier which is approximately 15 minutes from the resort by boat. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hotel Ao Nang
Centara Grand Beach Resort And Villas
Centara Grand Beach Hotel
Centara Grand Beach Krabi
Central Krabi Hotel
Central Krabi Bay Resort
Central Bay Resort Krabi
Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi Ao Nang

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