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“Not the luxury & secluded quiet place that was expected”

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Sukantara Cascade Resort & Spa
Ranked #8 of 19 Hotels in Mae Rim
Reviewed 30 December 2013

We are a family of 4. We booked 2 rooms for two nights in a Deluxe Lanna Cottage. We were expecting a very quiet place, secluded in a beautiful surrounding, definitely something special to end of our week stay in Chiang Mai: the hotel was not up to our expectation at all so we left one day earlier for that simple reason.
The cascade is nice, it's original to have it going through the hotel but that's all that needs to be said about it…
The restaurant area is typical, rustic and can be entertaining for the kids with all the birds rooming around ( peacock, roosters, geese ).
Regarding the rooms we were very disappointed from the beginning.
The main road is less than a meter away behind the cottages so we could hear every car passing by at night: not much sleep at night… Lots of noise also from all the mice/rats/other animals rooming around the roof during the night- just impossible to sleep.
We had a room with a jacuzzi outside but we could not use it: it could not be filled more than 1/3 before running out of hot water. Same for the outside shower, not much hot water. In December with 8-10 deg max at night it's hard to take a shower outside without hot water.
The rooms were clean but not to the expected standard, quite dark also.
The food was basic and not great. We ordered their special Chiang Mai curry with ginger and pork and it was served cold ( out of the fridge, straight on the plate without the help of the microwave - they offered to microwave it...). The fried dishes were better of course but the service was very slow and the kitchen closes at 8pm.

What I liked the most during my stay? Having my cup of coffee on the terrace with the peacock next to me and being able to leave earlier to come back home.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank IsaWahle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 2 December 2013

If you want to see mae rim, stay in comfort and not pay an arm and a leg (vs the four seasons resort) this is the place to stay at.

The good: the service, the food and the landscape/scenery is fantastic. It's right by the waterfall. The room and bathroom are a good size. There are chickens, geese and peacocks to keep the kids entertained when dining.

The bad: ants and bugs. There are a lot of ants everywhere. In the room, in the toilet/bathroom, at the restaurant. Guess that's because it is located in the great outdoors.The lighting in the room and bathroom is poor.

Could be improved: the bedrooms need to be re-furbished as they seem a little worn. The beds could be less hard and they should provide a "do not disturb" sign that we could use for the rooms as they only have glass sliding doors.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with family
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Thank euli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 November 2013

I spent 3 days at Sukantara Cascade last August 2-5, 2013. We booked 4 rooms, and we enjoyed our stay there very much. The food was marvelous and service was superb, in addition to massage beside the water falls.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Hudaolan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 October 2013

I am just back from 3 weeks of vacation in Thailand and sour aftertaste from my experience at and with Sukantara simply won't leave me. This would have to be one of the worst experiences in all my traveling years.

I arrived to the "resort" via the hotel pre-arranged pick-up (same day, mind you, they couldn't have forgotten about me), however reception was quite surprised by my arrival and check-in took an hour.

The "luxury" tent where I was staying was across the river, over the hanging bridge. I arrived on the rainy day and it was almost impossible to climb up due to extremely slippery road and absence of any sort of decent handrails. The tree stumps that one was supposed to step on were not fixed in the ground and it was dangerous to step on them. I slipped and badly fell twice during the course of 1 day and due to lack of personnel on the territory no one has ever acknowledged the falls, assisted me or inquired if I were alright.

In the "room" there were no windows, the fabric curtains creating the tent feel were not fixed to the walls, they were dirty and moldy. Bathroom area was nice with the bath tub and local shower, however plumbing and roof and walls were leaking. I could plunge into my own room pool in the bathroom. Ants and other bugs decided to make use of the bed and no amount of bug spray would force them to retreat.

The only 1 restaurant (not on par with the "resort" status of the place) serves decent if expensive Thai food and drinks, service is nice if they expect the tips. If you don't like or are sick of Thai food, there is no other place to go. Those very few western food options that were on the menu were horrible: mushroom spaghetti was made with sweetened coconut cream and tinned mushrooms, and ham sandwich was drowned in mayo.

Now, the place itself was beautiful, they have birds (peacocks, geese, chicken) walking around the restaurant, which serves as lobby and library and shop area as well. But there is no other place to go to besides the spa which is outrageously expensive. As I mentioned I arrived on the rainy day and options to venture outside of the resort was no possible. I just borrowed few DVDs from the movie library and retreated to my fort at 9pm hungry, wet, with a bad bruise, to share my bed with ants and cookies from the mini bar..

Needless to say that I've decided to cut my stay short and decided to leave next morning. At the check-out time I was presented 4 times with the wrong (triple overcharged bill), no inquiry about my decision to leave early and no apologies whatsoever. I was very happy to go back to town.

Room Tip: do not stay in the tents even though the offer the nicest view.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled solo
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2  Thank AlenKa1010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 October 2013

We absolutely loved out stay, but as previous posters have mentioned, Sukantara is wonderful for some but not for all. Two sides to every coin include:

Secluded with a hideaway feel / Too far from any facilities and activities
Natural surroundings / Ants everywhere

Room interiors also need some upkeep -- not sure what it was but bits of wood(?) kept flaking onto the bed consistently -- every 5 or so minutes the bed sheets will be sprinkled with black specks.
We had a room with the Jacuzzi, which was hot and filled up fast.

Laundry price was ok, and the price for food wasn't to bad either, but the spa prices were exorbitant even for a holiday splasher-outter like myself.

We were one of the few (if not the only) guests staying there at the time, which suited us just fine. Just make sure you really like spending time with your travel companion for there isn't much to do but relax and enjoy the waterfall. Probably not the best place for families with kids.

Room Tip: the two luxury tents are the only accommodation on the other side of the waterfall-crossing bridge...
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank BangkokBeachBum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 October 2013

We found this resort on the website and were won over by the prospect of staying next to a waterfall in the midst of a 'jungle' as well as the pictures of the resort and its room. It looked like a resort that should not be missed. We were a little taken aback when we arrived at the nondescript-looking frontage of the resort, little realising that what lay behind was a totally different world altogether. The first thing we noticed was the waterfall with the sound of the water cascading downstream; the chirping of birds and cries of some unknown insects; all providing the feeling of tranquillity in this resort. The Lana Cottage in which we stayed was very spacious indeed, with a king size bed and an adjoining bathroom with a standing shower that opened up into the clear blue sky. The room was clean and not too dark. Its high ceiling made the room feel more spacious than it already was and we had a large balcony overlooking the waterfall. Dining at the restaurant was another experience altogether; we enjoyed delicious authentic Thai cuisine in the moonlight next to the waterfall, enjoying the romantic sounds of the cascading water. Service was good and the staff were all very friendly, always with a genuine smile. The major tourist attractions such as the elephant camps, ATV rides, river rafting, tribal villages etc. were all within close proximity. What were the downsides of this resort? Not many, really.
First, as some other reviewers had noted, the rooms need a little more tender loving care. We discovered some defects in the wooden floor as well as some missing bamboo that were used to provide privacy in the open-air shower, which was a major concern. Other than that, the room was perfect.
The owner should seriously consider providing some form of shelter over the open-air shower as it is a little problematic to take a nice hot shower when the sky is raining down on you.
The resort is located on a hillside out of town. We found out that it can be quite costly to arrange transport to get to and back from town - it costs 1,400 THB and you can't depend on public transport.
Overall, Sukantara is a resort that one should consider if you like nature, peace and solitude; not to mention the good food and friendly service.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Cotton2012_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 September 2013

I write this looking over the breath taking waterfalls of Sukantara. The setting second to none.

Unfortunately the resort itself is 'tired' and in need of some renovation and rejuvenation. Whilst the rooms are clean and tidy, they are well aged and quite underwhelming and dark. Rotting wood and dank bathrooms don't aid the cause.

Whilst the staff are lovely, they also seem lack lustre to the tourist.

The food I would say, is average.

For the money that is paid to stay at Sukantara, I think much work is required to bring it up to speed with other resorts in competing budget ranges.

All of this said, you can't fault the beautiful peacocks, geese and Semarang bantams as they wander the energising waterfall setting. If you are a lover of nature and less focused on the trimmings and can look past second rate accomodation - Sukantara would serve you well.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Kelly C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sukantara Cascade Resort & Spa

Address: 12/2 Moo 8 Mae Rim | T.Maeram, A.Mae Rim, Mae Rim 50180, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Chiang Mai Province > Mae Rim
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Mae Rim
#6 Spa Hotel in Mae Rim
#6 Top resorts Hotel in Mae Rim
Price Range: £107 - £226 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Sukantara Cascade Resort & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Natural Luxury boutique resort which is the perfect for private romantic honeymoon. The Resort lies on the sloping bank of a mountain stream in the verdant Chiangmai highland. Mountain water cascades over boulders in the stream, creating tiered waterfalls right below the Lanna-Balinese-style guest cottages and offers the blissful experiences of close-to-nature living, that will remain a cherished memory for a lifetime. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sukantara Cascade Resort And Spa
Sukantara Cascade Hotel Mae Rim
Sukantara Cascade Resort & Spa Chiang Mai Province, Thailand

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