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“Not a 5 star resort. Could do better”
Review of AKA Resort & Spa

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AKA Resort & Spa
Ranked #87 of 137 Hotels in Hua Hin
London, England
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Not a 5 star resort. Could do better”
Reviewed 16 December 2009

Stayed here for 5 nights in November (and Putahracsa for a further 5 nights – see separate review).

The weather was great as just coming into the cold season. The temperature was around 30 degrees every day with a gentle breeze to help cool the air down. Not particularly muggy and with just one day of rain.

We enjoyed our stay and didn’t have any major complaints as such tho there were a few niggly things that whilst individually were small and inconsequential, added together made the hotel disappointing. We wouldn’t choose the AKA again and much preferred the Putahracsa.

The hotel was very quiet and relaxing – I think the staff outnumbered the guests 3:1 for the first few days – and is very secluded from anything so if you want to feel shut off from the real world for a weekend or couple of days then this place is for you.

If you do get cabin fever and need to escape, there is a shuttle bus to Hua Hin which leaves the resort 3 times a day: approx 9.00, 12.00, 6.00pm and then picks you up in Hua Hin at 12.30, 6.30 and 9.30pm if I remember correctly.

The ambience is very relaxing and Zen like tho they did take the whole ‘spa’ ethos a bit too far with the relentless playing of piano chill out music. There was no escape from it. They seemed to have 1 CD of about 6 songs which was on repeat so wherever you were in the resort you could hear the droning chimes of Richard Clayderman-esque tunes. By day 3 it was driving us insane and at lunch we had to ask the restaurant manager to turn it off or replace it with something else as a bit of respite. He duly played another CD which was scant relief as sure enough the piano chill out CD was back on again the next morning at Breakfast. How the staff managed to endure it and not end up stabbing themselves slowly with forks I have no idea. It did feel like the restaurant staff were in zombie mode a lot of the time as there were so few guests and little for them to do.

Our villa was very spacious and stylish and the design appeared good on initial inspection, with patio doors opening onto the pool area and sala. However, some bright spark decided that EVERY door in the villa should be a patio door, including the front door and door to the outside bathroom, so that every time you opened or closed a door you had to unbolt both patio doors and bolt them shut again so they didn’t bang, or let in mossies etc which was a rather noisy process. Very frustrating if using the bathroom in the middle of the night or if your neighbours don’t bolt their doors properly at night during a storm.

The bed was wonderful. Huge and extremely comfortable, with high quality bed linen but the pillows weren’t great and the stuffing a bit hard and lumpy. There was fresh fruit in the room when we arrived and housekeeping replenished 4 bottles of water daily which was great. We didn’t use the DVD player but the hotel had a decent selection of satellite channels including HBO movies.

No bathrobes and previously used flip flops (not very hygienic). A good supply of toiletries which all smelt good. Water pressure in the shower wasn’t great.

All the villas have private pools (some bigger than others) which was one of the reasons for choosing the AKA. Sadly there wasn’t much sun on our pool terrace for most of the day so we didn’t get to enjoy it as much as we would have liked and we ended up spending most of our time by the main big pool which we practically had to ourselves. And a good job too as there were only 4 sun loungers out for guests to use. I don’t know if this was for design reasons or that they simply weren’t required as guests tended to relax in their villas.

There are loads of lakes, pools and channels of stagnant water throughout the resort which didn’t provide any purpose other than as design features and some sort of hideous breeding ground for bugs and mosquitos.

The food was excellent tho pricey compared to the rest of Hua Hin. There is a Thai menu and a more expensive fine dining ‘International’ menu. We sampled both and generally thought the food was delicious. We didn’t have a bad meal during our whole time there. The restaurant was practically empty every night which was unfortunate but not surprising due to the high prices when you can eat cheaply in Hua Hin - a Green Curry is a Green Curry wherever you eat it.

The wine was hugely expensive (about £9 a glass!) with only about 5 very unimaginative choices each for white and red, all of which were bog standard Hardy’s and Wolf Blass. We mostly drank water and beer (Singha is great) and had cocktails one night but they were a bit of a disaster. We ordered a Mojito and Caiparinha both of which looked and tasted the same – Bacardi topped up with soda, sugar sitting on the bottom with a few mint leaves and chopped up bits of lime floating on the top. I appreciate that you can’t expect London bar standards in a fairly remote resort in Thailand but having travelled to Langkawi and Bali and whilst there sampled some of the best Cosmopolitans we’ve ever drunk it’s disappointing that they can’t get it right at the AKA. Why offer cocktails on the menu if you can’t make them correctly?

There is an organic farm at the resort where a lot of the produce used in the restaurant is home grown. It’s a shame that they don’t make more of this as a selling point on the menu or in other info about the resort.

We did become slightly bored of the menu which is the same for lunch and dinner. Be warned – the website is rather deceptive in its listing of all the different places to eat eg Café, Bar, Restaurant, Deli. In fact, the bar, café and restaurant are essentially all together in one place with the same menu so there is no difference between them. The Deli is in Hua Hin where the bus drops you off and picks you up. It’s actually a nice spot to sit and have a peppermint tea or beer whilst you wait for the bus and they offer sandwiches, cakes etc at much better prices than the resort itself.

The hotel suffers from a lack of marketing and promotion of its services. There wasn’t any information (menu, pricelist) about the Spa in the room so without calling or visiting the spa itself you weren’t able to make an informed decision about treatments as you didn’t know what was on offer or the price of the treatments. Likewise with any trips you might want to take. All of the staff throughout the hotel were lovely but didn’t speak great English so communication was difficult on occasion. We enquired at Reception about an Elephant trek and no one knew much about it, or had any info or details to give us other than the name of the place where it was. A call later to our room told us the price of getting a taxi there and back but at this point we had just given up.

We also had a nightmare checking out. All of our cards were declined which we thought odd when we both had funds in our accounts. We thought the girl on reception must have been wrongly inputting the transaction as the cards were saying declined before we even had a chance to put our pin numbers in. A colleague later appeared who then processed the transaction successfully with cards and pins accepted. The whole procedure took about 30 mins and was rather annoying as clearly there was nothing wrong with our cards, more the girl on reception who didn’t know how to work the credit card machine.

Overall we didn't have an unenjoyable stay, but the little things that didn’t work or went wrong were not what you’d expect from a 5 star resort. I’d recommend staying at the Putahracsa instead!

Good points
Good food (tho expensive for Thailand)
Relaxing, stylish retreat
Plenty of complimentary bottles of water

Bad points
Remote location, despite the shuttle bus
Expensive, especially the wine – stock up at the airport before you arrive
Irritating music playing throughout resort

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank MsSybarite
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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323 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
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  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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ORLEANS
1 review
Reviewed 15 December 2009

I spend 9 wonderful days at your AKA RESORT in Hua Hin (Thaïland), the perfect place to relax after hard work for 1 year, a quiet place, with no noise, the private swimming pool, wonderful food, and great massages.
It was the paradise during 9 days for us.
Thank you very much
See you soon in 2010!!!!....
Réjane JUDAS - France

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank KANGOUROU45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
paris
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 15 December 2009

its already the second i have visited aka resort huahin after january 2009; its such a discovery for people who are working under pressure all the year; its the perfect place to relax, if you want you can stay to your private villa for 1 week without going out and just sleeping, doing sport, reading, swimming and catching up!!
six kilometers from the sea and city activities with a free shuttle, but in the mountain, so the temperaure is much cooler than in bangkok, perfect for me

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank diego21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 7 December 2009

I stay at AKA Resort for one night at 2 Dec 2009 celebrating my birthday, however it made me feel extremely disappointed.
I and my boyfriend drive to AKA from Cha am, we see lots of signage of other hotels except AKAs. Maintence of the environment is unexpectedly poor, the woodern handles are all old or even broken. A unbelievable smelly natural pool is next to the restaurant.
In our deluxe pool villa room, the woodern floor beside private pool is again broken, iron spike is underlapped and hurt my foot. We called reception for golf cart service from our room to hotel entrance, after 30mins of waiting we haven't see any staff to pick us up.
My boyfriend contacted AKA to prepare a surprise birthday cake for me, however AKA forget this issue surprisely. At the end of the trip, I found that they have overcharged us. I am still processing my complaint over them.
All of the above experience tell me that I can't have any excuse to visit AKA again.

  • Stayed December 2009
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Siumice
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Hua Hin hotels

London, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
35 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 November 2009

We expected better service from a small intimate resort, but what was supposed to be an exclusive experience became impersonal and we ultimately felt completely alienated. For instance, we were having problems with wi-fi and without offering to determine the cause, we were simply told to take our laptop outside -- it was 11pm and the mozzy-infested patio was simply too dark. Breakfast service seemed rushed and unfriendly for such a small resort of approx. 30 rooms where there is no more than 20 guests at any one time. Communications between staff/shifts are lacking so we had to speak to multiple staff on the same matter.

Location may be a problem for those looking to visit the town, restaurants, and other attractions in Hua Hin -- it is very desolate. There isn't enough within the resort to keep you satisfied for more than a few nights. The free shuttle service by the hotel has limited seats and does not run frequently enough. One-way taxi costs THB 400 to town and does add up on longer stays.

Rooms at the AKA Resort (not to be confused with the newer AKA Kuti) are tired, with signs of wear and tear on furnishings, fixtures. Floor-to-ceiling window panes that run on three sides of the villa open up to the wooden deck, spa cottage, the 10m long plunge pool, and would appeal to those looking to enjoy the elements. The upper patio is nice to have, but floors are moldy and desperately need cleaning.

I wouldn't recommend it to those looking to enjoy Hua Hin and all it has to offer. Lack lustre service, lack of variety within the hotel, and being so desolate -- it may appeal to some, but not enough for us to recommend to a friend.

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank brightfuchsia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 October 2009

We chose to stay at the Aka Resort for 7 nights mainly for the Golf. There website stated that there was a shuttle bus every hour into hua hin, and that they could orangise all your golfing requirements, this was not the case.

We arrived and immediately found the Aka very nice, our check in procedure was very long, and we had to sign documentation about the safety of our personal belongings. We did know from Trip Advisor about the robberies, but this document just made us even more wary.

We were golf carted to our Villa, which was a 2 bedroom pool villa. This was very nice, with seperate livingroom quarters, there was security walls all round the villa, so you did feel very secure. The pool was lovely. The accomodation and decking was quite dated, it could be done with an update. We kept catching our bare feet on nail of the decking. The pool itself was very dangerous to get in and out of. The steps were in the corner of the pool but were very deep, and the side of pool was very slippy so you found you were stretching yourself to get in and out. This would be extremely dangerous for families with young children.

We tried to orangeise some golf with the hotel, but they did not have any information for us. They managed to get us booked on Black Mountain, which is just a 5 minute trip in a minibus up the mountain, but as for any other courses in the area, we were having to do it all our selves, which obviously was not what the website had stated.

We also tried to get on there shuttle bus to go into hua hin, 1 day they said it was fully booked but we never seen anyone else going about, and the next day they said it would not be running until 6pm, so both times we had to get a taxi to and fro which cost us 300 baht each way. The road up to the hotel was also in a very bad way. All the taxis drove really slow to avoid either the dogs or the great craters of pot holes, so the journey to hua hin took you about 20 minutes.

We ate in the restaurant 1 night, and the food was really really good, hats off to the chef. It may have been a bit pricey but you can't complain about good food here, it was excellant.

As i said at the beginning of my review, we had booked here for 7 nights, but we checked out after 3 and headed to a hotel that could organise the golf for us.

I would not return to the Aka, i have been there, it is not somewhere i would wish to return as its a bit to desolate and is not up to the standards received at other high graded hotels.

  • Stayed October 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank foreveralways
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chavenay, France
Level 6 Contributor
117 reviews
81 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 144 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 October 2009

I was not disappointed. I chose the Aka because I wanted to stay in a quiet hotel during a short trip to Thailand. I loved the privacy of the villa !

Only 2 things I did not like :
- The gym is small and does not have air conditionning !
- When I checked out, my credit card was charged in euros not in Thai Bath. I knew if it was the case that the exchange rate would be very poor. I insisted to be charged in Thai Bath, was assured I would be (both the euro and thai bath amounts were on the receipt) ... when I checked my bank account I found out I had been charged in euros. Not very honest.
In any case, its a beautiful hotel and I very much enjoyed my stay !

  • Stayed October 2009, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Katergo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about AKA Resort & Spa

Property: AKA Resort & Spa
Address: 160 Moo 7, Baan Nhong Hiang | Hin Lek Fai, Hua Hin 77110, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Prachuap Khiri Khan Province > Hua Hin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#22 Top resorts Hotel in Hua Hin
#36 Luxury Hotel in Hua Hin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:5 star — AKA Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
AKA Resort Hua Hin offers private villas inspired by Thailand's meditative traditions. Tucked away in the hills of Hua Hin, the resort's private villas showcase elegant design and amenities. Personal infinity pools and nature open spas provide guests with a private oasis amidst Thailand's tropical landscape. Reflecting Hua Hin's unique cultural heritage, AKA Resort Hua Hin is a rejuvenating and peaceful retreat from the stresses of daily life. Each villa is infused with an ambience of tranquility, permeating the pools, terraces, and sala rooftop gardens.AKA Resort Guti translates Thailand's traditional monastery experience into an exclusive villa getaway. Nestled in the hills of Hua Hin, the resort offers private villas, each one inspired by meditative Thai traditions and elegant Thai architecture. With infinity pools and garden terraces, the exclusive villas provide relaxing sanctuaries amidst tropical landscapes and panoramic view of Hua Hin. Hua Hin's history as a retreat destination for Thailand's monarchy affords the area with an air of nobility and tranquility, steeped in traditional Thai luxury. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aka Hotel Resort And Spa
Aka Resort Hua Hin
Aka Hotel Hua Hin

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