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“Overpriced Bad Service”

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Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi
Ranked #4 of 107 Hotels in Ao Nang
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Overpriced Bad Service”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 February 2009

Myself and my wife visited Centara Krabi for 10nights in January as part of our honeymoon. For the views, we were not disappointed, they are exactly as they appear on their website. But there are lots and lots of niggling faults about this resort:

* Checkin - We expected the checkin in Ao Nang and were fine with that. What we didn't expect and made for a crap start to the stay was the 1.5hrs wait once we had got to the resort, without being offered a drink, cool towels, place to change etc. The room was ready, but they didn't have enough staff (one person alone this time) to show everyone to their rooms...

* The rooms and facilities are quite poorly built and maintained. You can see from the photos there are badly fitted electricity sockets, rusted and worn parasol poles, dangerous paths without rails downhill, etc. Along with this a lot of the sunbeds are torn, as are the parasols themselves, the floors in the rooms are quite heavily scuffed and marked, the bathtub was stained yellow.... Not what you'd expect for the money you've paid....

* Another review said the Centara is inflexible, this is true. Things like in the clubhouse, you can't take their bottled water outside even though it's the same complimentary water you get in the room, you can only book their transfer boats at a certain time and not before etc, all conspire to make it feel like a holiday camp....

* The staff - The majority of the staff here really do not seem like they want to be here, appearing sullen and miserable all their time at work. The pool staff are very friendly and are a ray of sunshine in this resort. Before we stayed here, we stayed in the Conrad Bangkok - their staff couldn't do enough for us, and made us wish we could have planted that hotel in the Centara spot!


We stayed in one of their top rooms, the jacuzzi club ocean view deluxe and it was a good (if poorly maintained) room. Housekeeping was a bit hit and miss, each cleaner would do things differently - some would empty bins, some wouldn't, some would clean the bath, some wouldn't etc. With the club you get 2 items of free laundry a day, supposedly returned in 24hrs - when the resort got busier, it turned into 48hrs and often 3 or 4 calls for a laundry list or someone to collect the laundry....

Turn-down was also a bit hit and miss, sometimes it would be done at 16:30 (!), sometimes later, and sometimes not at all. Their act of moving the expensive Evian water from the minibar to our bedside tables along with a glass to drink it, was quite annoying...

If you are in a 'garden' view room, don't expect a nice lush garden view. We passed room 1162 everyday and their jungle view and amount of sunlight was terrible (see photos). Also, to the left of the resort as you look at it from the sea are very noisy generators and the Centara rubbish dump. Try contacting the resort before you get there and asking to be placed away from there...


The jetty is not a problem, I didn't see rough seas once in our 10 days there and the jetty simply mirrors the waves. Even those very young or those with mobility problems should not fear it.

The pathway over the hill to Ao Nang is also not a problem for most people. It is steep in places, but it is well lit and we were never bothered by the monkeys.

The trick to the sunbeds is, unfortunately, to get a towel before breakfast and place it over the sunbed you want. If you leave it until after breakfast, you won't have much choice left...

Halfway through our holiday, a fairly large and ugly ship turned up on the beach at Centara and stayed for 24hrs. At nightime, they unloaded what looked to be a lot of refuse/rubbish and put it in the Centara rubbish dump!?

Eating isn't overly expensive if you choose from the back of the menus - the cheaper dishes are always at the back in Centara. It's not particularly good quality though - every restaurant we ate in at Ao Nang was much better.

Above all, this resort trades on it's views. If the resort didn't have the views, I don't think it would be still in business, as the attitudes of a lot of their staff take it down. I got the impression that we were there purely to make money from and that was it.

I wouldn't stay here again.

  • Liked — Views
  • Disliked — too many to list...
  • Stayed January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Thank Mallym
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
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  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
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Level Contributor
17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 February 2009

We found this hotel and resort to be absolutely fantastic.
The ocean views and the Jacuzzi on the veranda overlooking the ocean were to dream for. Lovely ocean to swim. HOT!
We really enjoyed the scenic mountain trail to town - the extremely good and reasonably priced massages at Oa Nang beach. There were about 20 parlours to choose from!
Owning a luxury four star hotel in Hermanus South we did found however that customer care lacked to a great extend. As customer care is key!!

It was really infuriating at times - and it is a fact that these beautiful rooms were not properly cleaned. We had mice in the rooms and at times a dead lizard in MY BED. Needless to say we moved rooms four times in the two weeks we stayed there.
We are going back this year... because it IS extremely beautiful. Just wish that the current management can be reprimanded for spoiling this resort.
However must be fair the Breakfast staff and manager Jack by name were the best!


  • Liked — The fantastic views!
  • Disliked — cleanliness in rooms.
  • Stayed August 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Thank Honeyontravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 January 2009

I spent 4 days at The Rayavadee and then did a further 3 days at the Centara, 10th –17th of January. There is a marked difference in the two hotels. I’ll concentrate on the Centara as the Rayavadee is another (more positive ) story….

Check-in was no problem as we took a boat from one hotel to the other so none of this Transfer Lounge in Krabi nonsense. In common with other reviewers I also met with Guest Relations Manager Odni who proved to be all talk and zero action when it came to organising a late checkout for us!

It’s a ‘corporate’ hotel with rules and regulations that cannon be broken or even slightly bent!! So, of you need extra pillows or towels – they don’t understand – 2 beds in the room = 2 pillows and 2 adults in a room = 2 towels and so on….If you dare to go even slightly off piste on the restaurant menus this becomes a three act opera and not worth the aggravation. Oh, one more thing - eat relatively early as they don’t like it when you turn up gone 9:00pm…..

The Room was fine (Premium Deluxe) although 2 things annoyed me 1) the Aircon can only go on when you have accessed the room with your one and only key tag and I like to walk into an already icy-cold room when its hot and 2) the bottles of Evian placed by the bedside every night at turn-down are charged to your room – bad form considering you cannot use the Tap water alternative….

Shuttle boat to AO Nang is great fun but at Ao Nang beach the boats are not easy to get in and out of…..Food & Drinks expensive – Room Service better and not so pricey.

Staff range from smiling and helpful to downright miserable they give the impression of all being under the ‘Corporate Cosh’

I wouldn’t go back to the Centara – it’s a pretty soulless place and in my view it’s a good 4-star hotel but definitely misses out of a 5-star rating.

  • Liked — Fantastic beach setting
  • Disliked — Inflexibilty, food prices
  • Stayed January 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank 248carterhatch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kent, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
175 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 95 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 January 2009

We stayed at the Centara in Krabi for two weeks in January 2009, and had a fantastic holiday. The resort is set in a bay cut off from its surroundings by awesome limestone cliffs, and is located on a really good beach. We loved everything about our stay at the Centara and would highly recommend it.

We arrived at the check-in/reception area in Ao Nang at around 9:30pm, after a long journey from London. We were greated very enthusiastically by the staff and whisked off to the reception area where we were given a drink and a light snack. The only thing I would say about this is it would have been good to have better information about what was happening - I was expecting to get a boat to the resort and for around 10 minutes sat in the reception area hoping that we weren't in our resort already! Anyway, after 20 minutes or so we were taken to a nearby beach and then over to the resort by boat. The view as you approach the resort by boat is pretty stunning so first impressions were good.

We stayed in a premier deluxe room (1143) and thought the room size and amenities were very good. The private balcony was nice, with a good view of the sea and a great location to watch the sun set in the evenings. We didn't sign up to the "club" facilities, which suited us fine.

Our room rate included breakfast, which we ate daily in the "Lotus Court" restaurant. Breakfast was really good, with a great selection of food and in a lovely setting.

The pool is lovely, as is the beach. We tended to spend time at the far end of the beach where it was more quiet, as many of the families with young children stayed around the pool area. The only thing we didn't like about the beach was when some guests found it necessary to use their mobile phones while on the beach - it's just wrong!

One of the best things about Centara is its location. Ao Nang, the resort town next door is good fun to visit, but we would not have liked to have stayed there as it's not to our taste. To get to Ao Nang from the Centara you have the option of water taxi (around 600 baht), or the free shuttle service operated by the hotel - we used this and found the service excellent. A word of warning though, in the evenings the boat will drop you off in the sea and you will get your ankles wet (possibly up to your knees depending on the tide) so go prepared - but it adds to the fun of it all. You can also walk to Ao Nang at low tide, although this is more of a wade through the sea. There is also a walkway through the national park, but we didn't fancy that due to the almost vertical climb! If you want to be in the middle of Ao Nang, don't stay at the Centara. However if you want to stay in a beautiful resort but have the nightlife of Ao Nang nearby if you want it, then this is perfect. The fact that it is slightly inconvenient to leave the resort was in our opinion a good thing. We went out to Ao Nang in the evenings about six times, as it was good to try out different restaurants. The boat times suited us fine, 8pm out and 1030pm back is plenty of time to eat and have a couple of drinks.

We ate at all of the Centara hotel restaurants (Thai, Japanese - must try Japanese pizza!, and On the Rocks beach bar). The prices were more than what you would pay in Ao Nang, but still reasonable and the standard of the food was excellent. On the Rocks does some great buffet/BBQ evenings and you can sit right next to the beach. You wouldn't get that in Ao Nang. Wine prices are expensive everywhere in Thailand, and the hotel no more so than Ao Nang. Yes you will pay more for a beer at On the Rocks than you would in Ao Nang, but you can't beat the location. We spent many evenings sitting at the Centara beach bar with a Singa beer or three.

The hotel staff were very friendly and service very good. We booked a private speedboat tour through the hotel, and it was a great day out. The hotel provided a picnic, which the speedboat crew set up for us on Hong Island beach (white sand, clear water, pretty idylic....). The private tour is good as you can avoid the crowds - 16,500 baht for just the two of us.

My only one gripe about Centara is the price of water - they give you a couple of 500ml bottles daily, but that's not enough and the hotel charge around 90 baht for a bottle, when in Ao Nang you can pick up a bottle of water for less than 10 baht. Would be good if the hotel had a water dispenser in reception, so drinking water is freely available.

Overall, we had a wonderful holiday at the Centara and were sad to leave - for the two weeks we were there it felt like home.

  • Liked — the location and that it was more classy than other Ao Nang accommodation
  • Disliked — nothing, loved it
  • Stayed January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2 Thank travellingfrogs2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gran Canaria, Spain
Level Contributor
139 reviews
62 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 149 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 January 2009

Having recently returned from the 'Centara' after a fantastic holiday in Thailand i write this review to help other travellers decide.
I had read all the reviews on here prior to our trip so was well prepered, well at least i thought so! To be honest the check in process was no problem, and we got to our room at about 10 at night after landing in Krabie at 20:15... Everything was in order and we ordered room service which was very quick and tasty as it was every time we ordered during our stay.
The room was 'o.k.' and athough we had been accustomed to much nicer 5* rooms during our holiday we thought that this was sufficient for a beach location resort.
When we woke the next morning we were excited to check out the view as i had booked an 'Ocean facing, Spa, deluxe room with Club' We were not dissapointed with the view but it was obvious that 70 - 80% of the view was blocked by tree's & foilage, a little dissapointing we both thought, but had no intentions of complaining as we were happy to be away and relax...
After breakfast we met a guy by the name of 'Odni' who indruduced himself as the 'Guest relations manager' he showed us the 'club house' room, as this is part of what we had booked...He asked us what room we were staying in and said that it should be one of the better ones with a great view! So i obviously told him that there was a lot of tree's etc blocking the view....He made a note and ensured us that it would be attended to that day.....As we suspected it was not, so when we saw him the following day we mentioned the fact, he told us that he was sorry and it would be 'taken care of'..........Well no such effort was ever made to cut any of the foilage down during our stay at the 'Centara' We did not make a fuss not even at the begining and even though we saw him several more times during our stay he mentioned Nothing!
So there you have it a guest relations manager that simply lies to the guests just to get rid of them......To be honest, he functions like a 'Face behind an excuse desk'
The staff at the Centara are simply NOT of a 5* standard, if you are lucky you may get a smile but it's an effort and so false, they have no idea and are simply there 'doing a job' thats the feeling you get all of the time.....
One day we counted 4 different time's that we were reminded of the closing times of the facillities we used! This was at breakfast, the club lonuge, at ther own themed 'Thai night' (which by the way totally lacked atmosphere, and was a total rip off) and in the night club afterwards! Which was closing at midnight, on a Saturday night.........!
Its all gets a bit much when your on holiday and just want to relax, but their attitude is that they just want you out so they can get home!.....Lots of people were complaining that after mid night on a Satuday night in a 5* hotel there was no-where to get a drink.....
The location of the hotel is 5*.......But after a few days you come to realise that the service and the management are simply NOT, infact my partner thought of the place as a factory, a money making one.
We did spot the General manager a couple of times, you can easily spot him, we never saw him smile or talk to anyone, Totaly unfriendly....
On our last day i made a point of speaking to 'Odni' and asked for the benifit of future guests that use our room that the view be made better and again he said that he would, and even take a look himself!................I leave you to make up your own mind as to wheather he was serious..............!
Make your own mind up folks, this was our experience here at this hotel. 5* location with 2 * service....

David Cavey, Norwich U.K.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Lack of 5* sevice
  • Stayed January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2 Thank rigboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 January 2009

and great hotel with great facilities but if you like the freedom to wander around then having to use a restricted boat service, climb a rickety walkway or pay through the nose for a water taxi then this is not the place for you!! Because of this, the prices in the hotel did seem excessively high and never included tax or service so price is not what you pay. We never saw this in any other establishment in Thailand.
The information on the hotel was non existent so we only discovered tennis courts and shower facilities in Ao Nang the day we left.
Excellent gym, beautiful spacious room, clean pool and generally very clean and the staff were very polite and helpful. Would go back if they could improve access

Stayed January 2009
Thank Bibby2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
25 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 January 2009

The location of the hotel is unique awsome and the standard and quality of rooms are fantastic!!
We landed ar Krabi airport at 9.20am and we had a very smooth pick up and hotel check in. The speed boat trip took us to the resort and we had our room and luggage by 11.15, all very efficient with helpfull and friendly staff.

The sea view from our room (1213) was great and with the double glazed patio doors it kept out the noise from the un-silenced long tailed boats which run from early morning until late at night.

We arrived on 2nd January and struggled to get a sun bed in the sun, so for the firstcouple of days we ended up on the beach. My wife's comment was "We haven't paid for a 5 star resort to end up on the beach and to get sand everywere"
Over the next couple of days a lot of people left and this problem resolved itself, as long as you got down to breakfast at a resonable time. That said, the beds in the sun are next to one another and you are not allowed to move them onto the beach. It is also ashame that they are not to the same high standard and as comfortable as the ones on the balconies in the rooms.

We experienced both ends of the scale, with some staff being excellent and to others, everything was just so much trouble! Although we did see a marked improvement over the duration of our 8 day stay.

The food and drink in the resort is overpriced.
In the Blue Mango in Ao Nang we had a meal for 2 including beer and wine for the same price as 1 feature meal in the resort 1,300 Baht (and I had 3 courses!)
We did not upgrade to use the "Club Facilities" and I think maybe we should have done.
The happy hour in "On the Rocks" which starts at 5.30 brings prices down to an acceptable level, but it is only 1 hour and the staff are very punctual!

The walking route to Ao Nang has to be done at some stage even if it is to decide that you are tottaly unfit and will not do it again! Be warned, you will sweat when you use it, so it is not advisable for young children, the elderly and infirm, as parts of it are very very steep.
You really need a torch to walk along the beach at night to get to and from the walkway in the dark but once on it, there there of plenty of lights along the way.
We did not come accross andymonkeys at night.
During the day they are there and despite being asked not to feed them residents do. The monkeys will snatch the whole packet and not just the food being offered. I did hear that someone was taking a picture and lost their camera as a monkey grabbed and took it. Apparently it did not have a wrist strap.

Courtesy Boat
Your trip on this has to be booked and you can do this upto a day before. The last one back is 10.30 pm and it is normally full, so be prepared to barter with a long tail Taxi boat or you will have to walk it!
I must admit I could not understandf the logic of the boat timetable.

Acid test would you go back.
I think on reflection yes because of the setting and rooms which are just fantastic, but I would need to increase my gym sessions if I was going to use the walkway.

  • Liked — Fantastic setting and rooms
  • Disliked — Food & drink expensive, service mixed but was improving
  • Stayed January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
1 Thank CaptainYork
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi

Property: Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi
Address: 396-396/1 Moo 2, Ao Nang, | Amphur Muang, Ao Nang, Krabi Town 81180, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Krabi Province > Krabi Town > Ao Nang
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 Luxury Hotel in Ao Nang
#3 Family Hotel in Ao Nang
#5 Romantic Hotel in Ao Nang
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
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 with 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 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 And Villas
Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hotel Ao Nang
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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