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“Nice hotel not great!!”

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Phuket Marriott Resort & Spa, Merlin Beach
Ranked #17 of 328 Hotels in Patong
Certificate of Excellence
Ireland
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Nice hotel not great!!”
Reviewed 25 August 2006

My wife and I stayed in the Merlin for 10 days and we were disappointed after all of the reviews that we read. Firstly is a long way from Patong or anything else for that matter. You would not walk into Patong in a hurry so this means the free shuttle bus that runs rarely or a taxi for 200 baht is your options. Then for getting back a Tuk Tuk will cost 150 baht. So if you are not using the shuttle then this will be an expensive choice. Patong anyway is not that nice of a place but at least other resorts like the Amari Coral Resort are walking distance (5 mins).

The room is just ok. Good size but furniture is just average and the room does not compare at all to rooms in other hotels we stayed in Thailand. Staff is nice but the service needs a lot of improvement.

When we arrived we were given a room that had a lot of ants running around a counter near the mini bar. When I rang to report this they sent a member of the cleaning staff up who had no English to spray the area with insect repellent. You would expect a manager to come up or someone with English but I had to ring for a second time to ask them to send him up. We requested a room change and this was when the manager asked us had we left anything out that was sweet that would attract them. I told him that we just arrived and that we wanted a room change. This took 1.5 hours. The manager never even apologized and we were given nothing as a token gesture for this inconvenience.

Pool area is really great and the breakfast is excellent. Also the Italian restaurant is beautiful.

Another thing that annoyed me was when I went to the taxi counter to ask for a metered taxi to be booked for taking us back to the airport the lady refused to ring one for me because of the taxi mafia outside and she also refused to give me the number to ring them myself which I could not believe. In the end got a lift with Mr. More for 600 baht that was excellent.

Overall we were disappointed with this hotel. Rooms are just ok and the service was less than average. Also keep in mind the location. It is a 10 min drive from anywhere like shops etc. Friends stayed at the Amari Coral that is close to Patong and they love it. Finally this hotel is also expensive for a deluxe room for the same price you can do much better.

Thanks,
Joe

  • Stayed August 2006
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank Joey1234
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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perth
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 August 2006

just returned from 2 weeks at the merlin stayed in the pool access rooms which were almost to good to be true lovely hotel if a little clinical. The staff are very good and always helpfull my only complaint would be the band in the lounge who in my opinion were very poor. We would return to the hotel again although it is a bit out of patong if like us you travel in each night . all in all a lovely holiday ...please if you see the little white dog in the carpark give him a little to eat.

  • Liked — pools
  • Disliked — entertainment
  • Tips/Secrets — great beach across road from hotel
  • Stayed August 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
9 Thank type
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
88 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 85 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 August 2006

We stayed at Merlin Beach after a mini tour of Thailand and it was all that I had wished for. The initial greeting was lovely and the rooms were beautiful, most with great views. We initially got a room with a restricted view but asked for a move and got a great room overlooking the sea. Generally the food is good. The Thai restaurant is great but the buffet was disappointing. I think this is the only thing that lets this hotel down. I thought the prices of food and drink (except the buffet) were reasonable and there are several 'happy hours' at different times around the hotel. The pools are amazing and the hotel also offers some activities. My daughter did the intro to diving which was good and I strongly recommend doing the Batik Painting. It costs 150bt but you come away with a great momento. The hotel is outside Patong but don't let that put you off - I thought it was an advantage to get away from the smell of the sewers that pervades the main street and the constant hassle of those wanting your business. The shuttle bus is of limited use because it's timed to keep you in the hotel for meals but the cost of a taxi is 200bt. If you are worried about the beach , there is another one you can swim on the oppositie of the road(5 mins walk) but the hotel beach is great for kids who want to check out the crabs in the rock pools. The hotel are aware of the credit card fraud as reported on this site and they now take steps to ensure your card is safe. Overall it was a great holiday and I would definately return to Merlin Beach.

  • Liked — The standard of accomodation
  • Disliked — evening buffet
  • Tips/Secrets — pay the small extra cost for a deluxe room
  • Stayed August 2006, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
18 Thank ezz100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney
Level 3 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2006

We booked this hotel for 6 nights for our honeymoon after staying 5 nights already at Phi Phi Island. We weren't really sure what it was going to be like because my parents were meant to stay here the year prior when it was destroyed by the tsunami but they never did.
We were so impressed upon entering!
We had one of the rooms where you can swim straight off your balcony! We booked this room straight off the net (not on a last minute deal) and saved quite a bit compared to what the travel agent was quoting us. The bed was covered in flowers, petals and in the bath. The room was a very generous size with a queen bed and all the mod cons. You could even open the shutters that were on the bathroom wall and see the pool through the room.
The pools were amazing! 3 different pools that everyone can access. Kids section was great too. Swim up bar was a lovely treat where you could play jenga and order food whilst sitting in the water. The buffet breakfasts were to die for. Many different foods for all nationalities. They were quite busy between 8-9 though.
There was a 3 person band each night in the cocktail bar which were brilliant, enjoyed with 2-4-1 cocktails.
There is also a free bus that runs from the resort into town (about 5 minutes) but it is very nice to take a break from the centre of Phuket and escape back to the resort. We only used the bus once because we hired a scooter from town for 4 days that we used to take us back and forth. It was very safe and a bargain for $16 for 4 days! (hired on beach near McDonalds). We actually used this to explore the island and came across Elephants, secluded beaches and a snake farm.
Highly recommend the Merlin Beach Resort and would definitely stay there again.
p.s My only issue the whole time was one night at 1am the fire alarm went off and we woke in a state but it was because
someone was smoking in their room.
Also, if you have a couple of days definitely check out Phi Phi Island it's a great place with the best snorkelling I have ever seen.

  • Stayed March 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
14 Thank mozqueeto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
England
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2006

Stayed here for 10 days end July beginning of August. The hotel is everything the other reviews have said. The staff were always polite, attentive and good humoured. The rooms were clean and spacious - we had superior rooms and did not feel we needed to upgrade to deluxe. The pools were wonderful, clean and uncrowded with plenty of comfortable sun beds and shade. Whereas it is not possible to swim, in the sea, the beach provides a pleasant breeze and some interesting rock pooling and at high tide it would be possible to snorkel. The hotel restaurants were all good, although a little expensive - around 600 bahts per person including drinks and tax for two courses. It is possible to eat much more cheaply in Patong where it is easy to get a meal for 300 bahts or less. We used the Happy hour in the lobby bar (18.00 to 20.00) with a 50% discount on all drinks most evenings. This bar also has a live band every night who play requests. The hotel is situated in a quiet area a few kilometres from Patong, but the hustle and bustle of Patong was only a tuk tuk ride away. We tended to get taxis out in the evening 200 bahts and then return by tuk tuk - same price without negotiating. The first couple of nights in Patong we were constantly hassled by traders, but after a few days they seemed to recognise us and were happy to chat to us, mainly about football, and not try to sell us anything. Always barter - be prepared to pay about 10% of the asking price. Patong was lively but felt safe. There was a small police presence and we were happy to let our daughters 19 an 17 out on their own to return to the hotel by tuk tuk when ready. But word of warning, keep a tight rein on your men - the ladies of the night were bountiful and often beautiful. We only did a couple of trips, an elephant trek which was excellent and a rather touristy and tacky trip to James Bond Island which we didn't enjoy. The climate was lovely, and even though monsoon season, we only had two days of rain out of 10. The rest of the time of either sunny or slightly overcast, but warm and we all got good tans - the sun is very strong, there were several burnt people around.

  • Liked — the staff
  • Disliked — noisy air conditioning
  • Tips/Secrets — the first time you visit Patong, wear something distinctive so you will be remembered then you won't be bothered on subsequent occasions
  • Stayed August 2006, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
21 Thank west46
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
sydney
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 August 2006

I booked this hotel for myself and my boyfriend having seeing it was so well recommended by people on this site. Whilst it was a nice hotel there were several problems. The main problem that no one mentioned is that you can't swim in the sea!! I'm not sure what the point of having a beach front hotel is if you can't actually have a swim (it's too rocky). That was the initial disappointment.

The staff were a little clinical at times and it did seem like a large chain hotel - for example, there were charges for everything, which they often failed to mention. On once occasion we asked if a member of the "boat bar" in the swimming pool to take a picture of us in the pool but he refused saying they were not permitted to. I guess all these little things mounted up and I came away a little disappointed. However the rooms were lovely and the pools beautiful. Maybe I was expecting too much!

  • Stayed June 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
10 Thank lissag
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gloucestershire, UK
Level 5 Contributor
29 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 244 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 July 2006

We stayed at the Merlin Beach for 5 nights in July as part of a multi-centre trip from Tradewinds. Firstly, I would highly recommend Tradewinds for this type of holiday, as we were very impressed with the price and service we received for our whole 2 week holiday.

Right from the moment we arrived we were impressed with the Merlin Beach and felt very ‘looked after’. We were immediately sat down at a table and given cool towels and a cold drink whilst we were checked in. We also received a free room upgrade to a Deluxe room, which was very nice.

As other reviews have said, the pools are outstanding and very well maintained. The swim-up pool bar is just too convenient and relaxing!!!

The whole point of this leg of our holiday was rest and relaxation – and this resort is perfect for it!! It’s away from the constant hustle and bustle of Patong, but near enough to get into town easily if required. The only evidence of 2004’s tsunami is that the stretch of beach at the back of the property is a bit ‘stony’ so not very good for swimming at all. Not their fault – the ‘stones’ are actually bits of coral reef that were broken off and have slowly been washing ashore for the past 18 months.

Don’t bother getting a massage in the hotel Spa – there are 2 huts either side of the beach, where the massages are superb and far cheaper!!! A 1-hour Thai massage lying in the shade of the hut on the beach with the sound of the waves for 300B (£4.50) – bliss! We had a massage at both huts and found the one on the left-hand side of the beach (as you look at the sea with the hotel behind you) to be marginally better.

Food and drink in the hotel is very good. There are 5 different restaurants, and all are distinctly different and not too overpriced. Service and quality of food is very good.

One thing we found in all 3 locations in Thailand we went to, is that the hotels do not include government tax and/or service charges in their advertised food and drink prices - so you can get caught out by this. 99% of the bars and non-hotel restaurants do include tax, so be sure to read the small print at the bottom of the menus if you want to watch how much you spend. Taxes add about 15-20% on top of your bill at the end of the night.

The shuttle bus (well, it’s a coach really!) is a bonus – not to worry if it’s not convenient for the times you want to get into town, as it’s not difficult or expensive to get a tuk-tuk. There’s a tuk-tuk stand outside the hotel and they are the only ones to choose from, which is why they’ll charge you 200B (£3) to get into Patong but you can get back for 150B.

Personally we didn’t like Patong much – it’s a bit ‘tacky’ and feels like you could be in any package holiday resort anywhere in the world!!! Felt to me a bit like being in Benidorm, Ibiza or any of the Costa del Sol tourist traps. Just didn’t feel ‘Thai’ – too many stalls selling rip-off sports t-shirts and sunglasses, combined with loads of theme pubs (Aussie, Irish, Rock music etc. etc.). I have nothing against these places, and quite often love to visit them – there were just too many of them and nothing 'non-touristy' to balance it up.

We also hired a motorbike for the day to get out and about a bit more, but having the freedom of not being in an organized tour group. I would recommend this only if you are an experienced rider. Most of the bikes in Thailand are small 125cc scooters and there are hundreds of them about!! But these don’t have the stabililty and power to get out of trouble and we saw many near-misses with tourists who weren’t used to riding and didn’t understand the rules (or lack of them!!) for the Thai roads. There were also a fair amount of people to be found with arms/legs in bandages as proof of this! We hired a 600cc Honda Shadow for 600B (£9) which was much more suitable, and enabled us to ride up around the east & west coasts at our own pace for the day.

Going to the Phi Phi Islands, where ‘The Beach’ was filmed, is a must – superb! Prices vary from various tour operators and one of the biggest differences for the money is the mode of transport – it takes 2 hours to get to Phi Phi by boat and only 45-50 mins by speedboat, so these trips are more expensive but worth it. Once you’re away from Phuket mainland there’s not a lot to see en-route to Phi Phi so wasting an additional 2+ hours of the day in a slower boat didn’t appeal to us. We went with Phuket Adventures and they were 1st Class – do take the opportunity to go snorkelling; the waters are very clear and the amount and variety of fish to be seen is out of this world!

July is in ‘rainy season’ but we didn’t see one drop of rain during the 5 days we were there, so I would definitely go again at this time of year when prices are cheaper and places not as crowded.

  • Stayed June 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
42 Thank Mel 'Evans' Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Phuket Marriott Resort & Spa, Merlin Beach

Property: Phuket Marriott Resort & Spa, Merlin Beach
Address: 99 Muen-Ngoen Road | Tri-Trang Beach, Patong, Kathu, Phuket 83150, Thailand (Formerly Merlin Beach Resort)
Region: Thailand > Phuket > Kathu > Patong
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Top resorts Hotel in Patong
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Patong
#12 Spa Hotel in Patong
#12 Luxury Hotel in Patong
#15 Romantic Hotel in Patong
#15 Family Hotel in Patong
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:5 star — Phuket Marriott Resort & Spa, Merlin Beach 5*
Number of rooms: 414
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set amongst forested mountains and lush, tropical landscaped gardens, serenity awaits at Phuket Marriott Resort & Spa, Merlin Beach. Located on a beautiful secluded stretch of white sandy Tri-Trang Beach, the resort boasts its own reef and stylish accommodation. Our resort is the ultimate destination for individual travelers, families, weddings and MICE. Three beautifully appointed swimming pools, modern fitness facilities, kids club, Spa & a wide variety of food & beverage. Our resort has an outstanding activity program for all ages offering extensive options for the most discerning traveler. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Merlin Beach Hotel Patong
Merlin Beach Resort Phuket
Hotel Merlin Beach
Beach Merlin Resort
Beach Merlin Phuket Resort
Merlin Beach Phuket
Phuket Marriott Resort & Spa, Merlin Beach Patong

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