First up, this hotel is beautiful, absolutely no denying the fact that arriving by speedboat and seeing the resort appear is pretty special.
We had two nights at Centara for a friend's wedding. The staff member who met us at the pier grabbed our bags, and let us know we had a bit of a wait for the boat, so go grab a drink. Transfer was fine. Much mentioned pier was slightly rocky, but fine. But definitely can imagine that in rough weather it would be pretty rough to get on or off.
Check In was fine, we were escorted to our room which was quite lovely looking, pointed out a few things along the way. Staff member did forget to mention that buffet breakfast was included, which would have been handy.
I arrived before 4pm, and immediately noticed there was no iron in the room. I ran reception straight away as I needed my shirt and trousers pressed for the wedding the next day. After lots of various answers they said they could get it back to me in time. To speed things up I walked the laundry bag to reception, where I was assured I would have it by 2pm the following day. Needless to say, fast forward to the next day, when arriving back at my room at 3pm, not only there is a cleaner in the room which prevents my wife and I from getting ready, but no laundry has appeared. I quickly call reception to be told it will be delivered by 4.30pm (right during the ceremony...) After a few calls I am told that the shirt will be delivered by 4pm. Now that might seem like a bit of a rant, but this resort claims to be five star. The unique location means I can't simply walk down the street to a Thai laundry and get my ironing done. And 24 hours notice for a shirt to be simply ironed is unacceptable (if it takes that long, put an iron in the room!). Made it to the ceremony a few minutes ahead of the bride.
The room designer was a bit absent minded when it came to the electronic side of things. From bed you can't reach a light switch. There is no clock, and there is no power outlet by the bed, so you can't plug your phone in and use that as a clock. When you turn on the light for the toilet, the light for the bathroom comes on also. However the glass wall means the bathroom light then shines straight in to the bedroom, effectively lighting up the entire room. But then you turn the light off, and stumble back to the bed in the dark...
As numerous other people have mentioned, there is a serious issue with the deck chairs around the pool. By lunchtime we couldn't get close to the pool, with every single chair reserved with a towel - resort staff need to police this. If you're not using the chair, you lose the chair. We don't want to leave our belongings a hundred metres from the pool, but what option do you have?
We ate in the Japanese restaurant, perfectly nice meal, but pretty quiet, I think we were just one of three tables. Quite expensive, but we guessed as much.
Breakfast is good, but wish I'd been told it was complementary, as I'd avoided it the first morning.
Monkey Trail. Perhaps a little more signage, and information at check-in. This is a fairly creaky old walk, and we thought we may see a monkey or two. We saw about 50-60, and we quickly discovered it was their trail, and humans are the imposter. One little guy thought it would be a good idea to jump up on me and give me a nice scratch. Not cool. Not when the little critters commonly carry rabies.
All in all there was nothing terrible about the hotel, hence the 3/5 review, it is too expensive however. Given that it was known we were guests of a wedding I would have thought that cleaning staff would get our room cleaned in the morning, not in the hour before when we would like to be getting ready. Laundry service is hopelessly inadequate (most five star hotels/resorts have either an iron in room, or a 1 hour pressing service), the non-policing of deck chairs makes the pool uncomfortable, and the lights/switches would drive me insane fairly quickly.
To be honest I've read through dozens of reviews of this hotel just to see if I was having a tough day, but the service issues tend to pop up again and again. Very disappointing also to see that the General Manager tends to dismiss negative reviews with sarcasm and ignorance - if you're not willing to improve or ignore the problems guests encounter then don't respond on TripAdvisor.
- 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