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“Honeymoon Paradise”

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Layana Resort and Spa
Ranked #1 of 85 Hotels in Ko Lanta
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 17 July 2014

Have just spent a glorious week in this hotel. Absolutely everything including the way staff treat you is luxury. We are spending a month in Thailand and I wish so much we could spend more time here. We had some gorgeous treatments in the spa. The food in Tides restaurant is top class we had a different 3 course meal every night and each one was as good as if not better than the last. Such a stunning place very sad to leave! Rooms beautiful pool area fabulous can't rate it all highly enough! One tip....be prepared to put on a few pounds you won't be able to resist the amazing food & cocktails!!

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
2  Thank Roisin D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 17 July 2014

The hotel is beautifully maintained and in an amazingly serene setting. Management is very careful to maintain a relaxing, jazzy, cool atmosphere with a "no children" policy. The lighting and music are carefully chosen and the vibe here is awesome. We stayed in the garden pavilion and switched to a beach front room before we left. The upgraded room with the upstairs was a nice addition, but we didn't really use it. The outdoor shower was a unique experience but the upgraded room may not be worth the extra expense. Rent the scooters at the hotel and go for a ride on the island. The prices are fair and it is perfectly safe and a wonderful way to see the island. Go snorkeling on the hotel boat. It is worth the added expense and beats the heck out of the noisy long boats that are available.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank traveller2211
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 July 2014

If you’re after peace and quiet then this is the place for you. Off the beaten track it’s located on the western side of Ko Lanta, on the Andaman Coast. It’s like a sleepy little beach island away from the party scene – where people really go to shut off and get away from it all. If you’re after the excitement this is not the place for you.

Upon hearing that it was a 2-2.5 hour journey from Krabi airport (KBV) I was a little reluctant, but it was actually a surprisingly pleasant journey. We were met at the airport and were taken to a luxury van – complete with reclining leather seats, TV and DVD selection (although I recommend ignoring this and looking out the window at the beautiful scenery instead), bottles of water, and cold towels. We had about a 45-minute drive to the coast where we got on a ferry which transports cars across the water. During high season instead of a ferry there is a speedboat which takes you directly to the hotel in about 30 minutes. But, as it was low season and the waves are unpredictable, they choose the side of guaranteed safety and use the ferry options. The first ferry took about 15 minutes before we got off on the other side. Then there was another 15 minute drive to the other side of that island, one more short ferry ride, and then we were on Ko Lanta. For each part of the journey you are surrounded by either lush greenery or beautiful water scenes. It helps to enhance that “leaving it all behind” feeling. Once on Ko Lanta it was a short 5-10 minute ride and then we were at the resort. Despite taking around 2 hours, the journey went quite quickly – and I very much dislike long car journeys. As I said, it was surprisingly pleasant and I actually found myself not dreading the return journey.

Once you enter the gate at Ko Lanta you enter a little oasis and sanctuary of calm and peace, truly “leaving it all behind.” We were greeted with flower necklaces and warm welcomes by the staff. It’s not part of a big hotel chain – what they miss in massive marketing campaigns they make up for in character and personality as they are able to provide authentic service and not have to worry about following a “script.”

The resort is small with most rooms (Garden Pavilions) being 4 to a house. On the beach there are a couple ocean suites and one magnificent “La Maison” which has a private pool. We had a Garden Pavilion which was comfortable but didn’t feel as luxurious as I was expecting. There’s nothing I can say that was wrong with it but it was more of a feeling I can’t quite explain. The room was very large, as was the bathroom, and I really like the daybed in the room which was great for lounging around. It would be better to have something similar on the balcony instead of the 2 chairs and table as that wasn’t very comfortable for reading/lounging.

Aside from the rooms I really liked the whole resort and its laid back feeling. I felt like the rest of the resort lived up to its luxurious feel much better than the rooms. The pool area was beautiful with staff standing ready to prepare your towels and get you water regularly. The view on one side was of the beautiful green lawn, the main building and the jungled mountain in the background. The view on the other side was of the ocean. Either way, you couldn’t lose! We enjoyed time at the pool despite the storm that came through for a couple days. Even though it rained quite heavily at night with some gusty winds and rough seas, the sun still managed to come out for a few hours each day. The hotel even has a “sunshine guarantee” where they will give you a 1000 Baht credit if it rains straight all day.

The spa was very nice with an indoor/outdoor feel and we started off every day with a spa treatment. I really enjoyed the Thai massage on the beach though as that was a really special experience. I was a bit concerned that there was only one restaurant and one bar but I quickly learned this was unnecessary. They promote happy hour which is every day from 5-7 and becomes a meeting point for people at the hotel. It’s nice and cozy and a great way to unwind. The restaurant was also nice with plenty of selection and we didn’t ever get bored with the menu during our stay. We did a cooking class with the chef which we really enjoyed and even got a certificate with an apron to remember it!

The staff was very friendly, especially Ned, the Thai Manager, and Lion, the F&B Manager. We had several pleasant discussions with them and felt they genuinely cared about our experience. For me, this kind of interaction is what sets Layana apart from some of the big name resorts. We were a bit surprised (and disappointed) that we never met the General Manager, aside from a brief handshake when we were leaving, despite seeing him around quite frequently. I would think we are the kind of visitors they would want as repeat guests…

Overall, I really enjoyed my time at Layana. I can imagine what it is like during high season when the sea is as calm as a lake and the sky a clear blue. I can definitely understand why people keep returning to Layana. Even though we were there during low season and the weather was a bit more challenging we enjoyed every minute and left completely relaxed.

Room Tip: The balconies of all the Garden Pavilions overlook the main garden so there's not much privacy...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
5  Thank Ashley B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 July 2014

We arrived on the beautiful golden beach in front of Layana on the fantastic speedboat transfer. It felt a little like a royal welcome as lots of the senior staff were on the beach to welcome us. Coming from a smaller resort on the quieter island of Koh Yao Noi it felt a little overwhelming at first but we soon settled into the resort and it's attentive and top class service. We were greeted with garlands and a cocktail whilst meeting the staff who introduced themselves and their role at the hotel before finally taking a quick buggy ride round the resort finishing up at our room. The resort is not big by any means. It looks exactly like the photos but feels more intimate than you might expect.

We were attracted to Layana because it is adults only but having stayed at an adults only hotel before we did also have some concerns that the hotel would be mainly retired people. We needn't have worried there was a good age range probably from about early 30's upwards.

I read lots of reviews here on TA before arriving and have to say am slightly dumbfounded at a negative comments regarding breakfast choice and the restaurant prices. We thought the breakfasts were fantastic. Eggs were cooked to order (fried, boiled, poached, scrambled or as waffles or as a choice of 4 fruit pancakes) and brought to your table so no hanging around waiting for them to be booked. There was also all your usual hot items - baked ham, bacon, sausages, tomatoes, potatoes and mixed vegetables but all done really nicely and slightly different everyday. There was also a salad selection, fruit selection with mango cut to order, cereals, a daily changing range of pastries and fresh bread with homemade tropical jams as well as an Asian breakfast selection including dim sum, congee and so on. One day the pastry selection included fresh churros with chocolate dipping sauce which was yum!

We never intended to eat at the hotel much but ended up having dinner there 3 out of 5 nights. One of the best things about the restaurant was that your table reserved for the whole evening and you just arrived when you were ready to eat. I loved this casual, released approach as it meant no rushing it you booked too early or waiting if your stomach started rumbling earlier than anticipated. Sure you could eat cheaper along the beach but the setting and service at Tides were irresistible. The daily menu specials were great but there was more than plenty choice of thai and international cuisine to stop any boredom. If anything there was too much choice. Joy who served us most nights excelled in the little touches like remembering how my husband liked his steak cooked 3 nights later! We soon settled into a daily routine of breakfast, pool, lunch at Sundowners, pool and maybe an afternoon massage at the spa or the beach and then a few cocktails watching sunset at happy hour before changing for dinner.

One highlight of our stay was the 4 island and emerald cave day trip on the resorts speedboat. Absolutely fantastic! Everything was provided for a fantastic day of snorkelling and all you needed to take was (plenty of) sunscreen. Staff were fantastic and lunch with wine on the stunning beach at Koh Kradan was truly memorable. The snorkelling was out of this world - so sad my underwater camera chose this day to give up the ghost!

Would love to have done the sunset cruise but had a cookery school pre booked that evening at Time for Lime. Definitely on he list for the next trip!

The Linger Longer spa was very, very good and we took advantage of a special 2-4-1 offer. It's easy to see why the spa has won so many awards with such great staff and treatments. I really appreciated the stylish, contemporary design of the spa too (way more stylish than the slightly cheesy name suggests). Beach massages were also excellent and there was an 'appointment book' beside the massage beds you could see available slots and book yourself in. Beach massages were also charged back to your room for convenience.

In the interests of a rounded review I also want to mention the excellent poolside service and housekeeping staff. All guests were invited to a complimentary wine and canapés reception by the pool on the Tuesday evening and this was a nice opportunity to speak more with the staff and meet other guests. The manager Stefan and his team including Ned, Jimmy, and others.

After 5 days at this wonderful resort we could see why so many tripadvisor reviewers return time after time and indeed we have already booked to return for a week next March on their inclusive half board package. Counting the days down already.......

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank Troubleonline
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 July 2014

Lovely hotel, Friendly staff. Amazing service was treated like royalty. A gentleman who organises the trips was really friendly and a lovely guy. The food was fantastic. Will 100% recommend this to friends and family. And we will deffenitly come back to this hotel in the future.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank Malini N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 July 2014

We stayed at layana hotel for 10 nights and had a wonderful time.The hotel was very comfortable with everything you could possibly want.Nothing was too much trouble for
the staff who made our holiday unforgettable.A lovely island,superb hotel and incredible
staff, I wish to thank all the staff for making us feel so welcome.Anybody reading this review
and thinking of going to layana hotel you must go you will not be disappointed.
Thanks again simon & june overett

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank SIMON O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 July 2014

Stayed here for three nights during low season, June 2014. And what is this hotel like during low season? Well, the waves are a force of nature and the staff plants red “don’t swim” flags on the beach. The tides deposit plastic flotsam on the beaches — enough that people would rather camp out by the pool than on the sand. Snorkeling is hard and many of the island restaurants are shut down.

The Layana gets by during low season primarily with its sublime service and destination-worthy spa. If you or a significant other likes massages, this place is absolutely still worth a visit during the rainier months.

That said, I’ve had the chance to stay at similarly priced and styled hotels throughout Southeast Asia, and this one comes one level behind. The rooms themselves — we stayed in a Garden Pavilion — are absolutely fine, but they’re stacked in fours and have the feel of a Boca retirement home. They’re also build moving away from the beach, not along it. The food is only so-so, and from my experience, the Western stuff is a better bet than the Thai. (Too bad, because when in Thailand I’d rather have some Thai food.)

A few other notes…

- The cocktails are wonderful, and even during low season it’s a joy to camp out at one of the sofa-soft benches near the bar and watch the sunset. The Layana looks out to the west, and the sunsets are dazzling.

- If you get picked up at the Krabi airport, you'll pay a lot. But they do pick you up in a tricked out van with a TV and a small, unspeakably random glove compartment of DVDs. We watched "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Killer."

- The staff really tries hard to make your stay perfect. When we were there, they organized a little island-seeing/snorkeling boat trip, even with only four people signed up. Most tour groups will only charter a boat if they have 6+ people. Not sure if the hotel lost money on us that day, but either way I was impressed.

- The breakfast buffet shrinks from its usual size during low season, and understandably so. You can’t put out heaps of food when only one-third of your rooms are booked. But the cooked-to-order stuff isn’t so great. Oddly enough, you’re best off eating here as Germans do — buttered bread, with a little meat and cheese. A lot of Germans come to this hotel, and I sense that the food and beverage folks cater to (or appreciate) their tastes.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank chicoharlan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Layana Resort and Spa

Address: 272 Moo 3 Phra-Ae Beach | Saladan, Ko Lanta 81150, Thailand
Phone Number:
Region: Thailand > Krabi Province > Ko Lanta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Ko Lanta
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Ko Lanta
#1 Luxury Hotel in Ko Lanta
#1 Romantic Hotel in Ko Lanta
Price Range: £109 - £413 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Layana Resort and Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 57
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Layana Resort & Spa is nestled on Koh Lanta Yai Island in Mu Koh Lanta National Park. The park is a marine archipelago, home to verdant tropical rainforests and undersea kingdoms of colourful coral rich in natural marine diversity. The resort enjoys a spectacular beachfront location on a 3-kilometer long white sand beach, situated about 2 hours south of Krabi International Airport. Environmentally-conscious design throughout the property results in a simple and elegant Thai atmosphere; alfresco architecture combining with contemporary design to provide an open, cool and natural feel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Layana Hotel Ko Lanta
Layana Ko Lanta

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