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“Return to heaven”

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LaLaanta Hideaway Resort
Ranked #20 of 85 Hotels in Ko Lanta
Reviewed 29 March 2009

A year has gone and we are finally back at the best place to be in Lanta. The resort has matured and is now even better. The surroundings with the white sandy beach and the resort hidden away in the trees is the same. The welcome you feel is even greater, it is like coming home. The view over the beach with Koh Ha in the distance is stunning. You can relax on the beach or in the shadows, and go for a cool drink or the great food. A perfect place to be if you need to relax from the world outside.
We love it. Mats & Tove, Sweden

  • Stayed: March 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank MatsTove
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 28 March 2009

La Laanta was the third destination from my wife and I during our three week Thai holiday. When we booked in early November, there were approximately 35 reviews on Trip Advisor. It’s the end of March now and that number has risen to 82 (with more to come I’m sure), the majority of which are 5 stars. That kind of popularity makes La Laanta the envy of all resorts, and with good reason. But the numbers don’t lie, and there’s a reason why so many guests are rushing to exhort the experiences had far away down the southern end of Koh Lanta.

We were on the very quiet island of Koh Jum before heading to Lanta. I was chatting to a very well travelled Swedish lady in her 60’s just before we departed. “Where are you going next?”, she asked. “Lanta” was my reply. Her face turned quite sullen. Her response was brief and to the point, punctuated as if to make a point – “busy”. Had I not known about the geographical whereabouts of La Laanta, I’d have been worried at that point.

There appear to be 2 Koh Lanta’s (in actuality, you could say the same about any well-known Thai island – Phi Phi, Phang-Ngan, Samui etc). There is the hustle and bustle of the main resort beach areas that seem to define the whole island, or there are the secluded beaches far away from the madness sought out by those looking for something else. La Laanta definitely falls into the latter category, the knowledge of which protected me from the misguided barb of my Scandinavian travel guide.

As so many guests seemed to admit whilst we were there, the rave reviews on Trip Advisor were the reason they had booked their La Laanta holiday. We were the same. If the photos didn’t hook you, the glowing reports surely did. We had hoped to secure ourselves a Sunset Splendour Villa when booking in early November. But four months away, they were already booked out. We were happy to settle for a Horizon Gaze, whilst secretly holding out for a cancellation in that time. No such luck.

So what’s the secret? There’s nothing we could tell you about this resort that you haven’t read already. A beautiful beach with only three resorts. There were some mornings we’d be the only two people in the water. The bungalows are very nice and comfortable. The food was great. The cocktails were potent. The pool was a nice alternative to the beach at times. And so on… But any of these things can be found at other resorts.

The real difference is simply those who run La Laanta. None of them had operated in resorts before they opened La Laanta, but their collective goodwill drives it forward. Patrick, June, Tony and Kung (correct spelling I hope) are omnipresent. They don’t tend to guest’s needs, they look after friends. It might sound like a cliché, but it’s just the way it is. They make an effort to engage you personally, and hope to wave good-bye to you as a new friend.

It’s fair to say that a lot of couples were staying at La Laanta when we were there. And couples tend to like their privacy. But at night, Patrick manages to weave a spell on the beach bar aided by Mackey’s infectious personality and cocktails. And under that spell, people of all ages from around the world would introduce themselves and talk into the small hours. I honestly cannot remember a feeling like that generated at any resort I’ve ever stayed in anywhere around the world.

Previous to La Laanta, we stayed at Koh Jum Lodge on Koh Jum. It too was paradise. I have raved about it in my review. A great deal of that success was due to the manager’s personal touches. And whilst those touches made a difference, they were nevertheless polite and kept at arms reach - almost a professional politeness. The managers at La Laanta genuinely reached out to you and engaged you personally. They welcomed you into their world, and tried to get to know you – however briefly. When we left, we left with new friends and we look forward to the day when we can laugh again with them.

If my memory serves me well, we were told that the record stay for a guest was 45 nights. You’ve got to be doing something right for someone to want to stay that long with you.

  • Stayed: March 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Capt_Funkelicious
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 March 2009

We stayed at La Laanta in November 2008 for 6 nights, and were very disappointed to leave. From the moment we were picked up at Krabi airport, we were shown nothing but courtesy and excellent service. The journey from airport to resort is a long one and well worth booking the Laanta transfer (both ways!) The resort is tucked away at the end of the island beside the national park, which in itself provides nightly entertainment in the form of noisy insects, frogs and monkeys!

Upon arrival we were shown to the bar area and given a refreshing drink whilst we watched the most glorious sunset. We stayed in one of the Horizon Gaze villas, which was exactly as shown on the website - quite basic but pretty and comfortable. Yes the beds are quite hard but that is the case across Thailand and we liked it. To be honest, we were rarely in our room anyway.

One of the things we liked most about Laanta was the fact that it is not in the middle of a busy resort. It is quite secluded and for that reason, you can completely relax and not be bothered by people from other hotels or those trying to sell you things on the beach. We spent our time during the day by the pool, walking on the beach or attempting to kayak! I believe if you wanted to, you could arrange to go elephant trekking or snorkelling but as we were on the 2nd half of our holiday, we just wanted pure relaxation.

Another thing we enjoyed very much was the food. We didnt ever make it to breakfast so cant comment on that. But there were some very tasty dishes on the menu and we sampled most of the main courses. There are also a couple of other places further along the beach you can try which are also good for lunch/dinner. Plus one evening a group of us were kindly taken by Patrick to a restaurant called Same Same But Different where we were told the food was amazing. It was very good, but no better that at Laanta :)

Without doubt, the thing we liked most about Laanta was the hospitality. It may be a relaxing resort by day, but if you choose to venture down to the bar at night you may be there for a long time! On our first evening down at the beach having dinner under the stars, Patrick came over and introduced himself and invited us to have some drinks at the bar. For some reason my boyfriend thought his name was Simon so we had a good laugh about that and Patrick became Simon for the duration of our stay! Needless to say, we spent every evening at the bar meeting a great bunch of people and having a fantastic time. The cocktails were the best I've tasted, and huge! And we played countless games of liars dice which can prove very entertaining after a few of Mackey's cocktails.

Overall, our stay at Laanta was brilliant. If choosing to come here, you should bear in mind that it is not a polished 5 star resort. It is far more rustic but with 5 star service. If you go with these realistic expectations and make the effort to get involved a little with the staff, you will have an extremely memorable holiday (and friends for life).

We very much hope to meet up with Simon and the team again someday and I would definately recommend this resort to friends (although not too many people as dont want it to get spoiled).

  • Stayed: November 2008, travelled as a couple
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Thank PopsyEdinburgh_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 March 2009

If you are up for relaxing in the most perfect resort where everything has been thought of and nothing forgotten by the very hospitable hosts at LaLaanta!
June (we can't thank enough) was the best host she looked after us in her resort catering to our needs, the room was gorgeous, spacious and clean.
We really enjoyed spending time in the pool and on the beach, the water was perfectly clear and the water warm.
The food in the resturant was probably the best that we had in Thailand when staying in resorts, there was an abundance of choice for breakfast, yummy cocktails at the bar and a spectacular view from almost everywhere you are.
Hidden well towards the end of Ko Lanta you will enjoy being away from the crowds in the main strips, however LaLaanta is more than happy to organise for you to head up there and come home which makes it easy to plan a day away from the resort (not sure why you would want too!)
This was the perfect end to our holiday...
We will definiately be back to visit as soon as we can.

  • Stayed: February 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank R_and_J_Adventures
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 March 2009

We spent 5 nights last november at the LaLaanta Hideaway Resort and these days were unforgetable. Really nice place, excellent food, best staff and beautiful accomodation. We stayed in a sand castle villa. Beach is long and lonely and you can see wonderfull sundowns every day. We definately will come back!

  • Stayed: November 2008
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Thank 123koeln321
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 March 2009

We came to Lalaanta for two reasons: 1) To do something more upscale and relaxing after backpacking through China for 2 months, and 2) To get married. We absolutely loved our stay at Lalaanta. It's very quiet and secluded, so you can have as much romantic time with your partner as you want. At the same time though, the resort is small enough that, if you want, you have the opportunity to get to the know the owners well, as well as other guests. We usually spent the days just the two of us...on the beach, taking a moto around the island, taking cooking classes, snorkeling (Lalaanta will organize this for you)...and nights after dinner we'd usually hang out at the bar with the owners and guests.

Tony, June, Kong, and Patrick put together the most perfect wedding for us. We didn't have a lot of requirements, as it was just my husband and me, and we just wanted it to be simple and romantic. The thought and care they all put into it, however, is indicative of the kind of service you would get at any time at Lalaanta. Patrick officiated the sunset ceremony, Tony made the beautiful archway under which we got married, June did all the flowers and baked a cake, and Kong arranged for an incredible meal. And someone ordered the most beautiful sunset that Koh Lanta has probably ever seen. The best part was that we had already spent some time with the staff before the wedding and they all truly cared to be a part of our wedding.
I think it probably takes alot to make a wedding, especially one where there are no family or friends (expect new ones), feel personable and special, and the Lalaanta staff did this wonderfully. They did so much more than we ever imagined or expected and created this beautiful, amazing, perfect night for us.

We, obviously, loved our stay at Lalaanta. For us, the place was perfect, we loved the quiet beautiful beach, the food was great, the company was unparalleled, and we loved the bungalows (yes, the bed is hard, but we love hard beds and found it very comfortable and in line with what you'd expect to find in Thailand).

Our one complaint is that only one of the Sand Castle bungalows is really on the beach. There are views from the porches of the other Sand Castle bungalows, but to us this view wasn't worth the extra money. It really isn't a big deal though, because no matter where you are in the resort you are very close to the beach.

We would recommend Lalaanta to everyone except people who:

1. Want to go to a night club every night.
2. Are completely, totally opposed to seeing insects. The rooms are very clean, but the resort is in the middle of the jungle, so you can't expect it to be sterile.
3. Don't want to stay at the resort every day but are not comfortable riding a motorcycle on a bumpy dirt road.

I'll end by saying that this is a really special place. We'll definitely go back, and I highly recommend Lalaanta.

  • Stayed: November 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank TogoGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 February 2009

I agree with previous reviewers. A lovely (remote!) setting with a shabby chic feel. The emphasis very much on shabby – the Sand Castle room was basic and in need of redecoration. The bed was very hard and the aircon uncontrollable and noisy. The bathroom was ok with a dribbly shower and separate bath, although you would need a ladder to get in and out.
The food was excellent and the smoothies superb. All the staff very friendly and helpful, especially Jun.
Tony and Mackeys late night drinking club – by invitation only it seemed – was noisy and disruptive for other guests.
Overall a lovely resort but with very limited facilities, and way over priced for the quality of accommodation.

  • Stayed: February 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank GrahamsNorfolkUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about LaLaanta Hideaway Resort

Address: 188 Moo 5, Bamboo Bay Beach | (Ao Mai Phai), Ko Lanta 81150, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Krabi Province > Ko Lanta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Ko Lanta
#4 Family Hotel in Ko Lanta
#10 Spa Hotel in Ko Lanta
#17 On the Beach Hotel in Ko Lanta
Price Range: £27 - £129 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — LaLaanta Hideaway Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 21
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Artistically inspired living on the most private beach for that castaway experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lalaanta Hideaway Hotel Ko Lanta
Lalaanta Hideaway Ko Lanta

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