Koh Lanta island has a wonderful 1970's hippie vibe still - & a beautiful shallow bay.
The hotel we found a bit odd, so I've tried to list the pro's & cons:
Pro's - fab location in the middle of the beach & wonderfully designed traditional buildings; we upgraded & had a bungalow room on the left as you walk from reception, & it was fine. There is a lane alongside that side of the hotel but it was no problem.
The grounds are beautifully designed & maintained.
Good air-con & our room was kept very clean. Good inside shower & loads of hot/warm water.
The staff were all very friendly.
The Spa is lovely & has a wonderful peaceful atmosphere - but with so many massage places on the beach much cheaper we only used them once.
You can have a massage a day at a different place, all priced the same & all excellent - especially the Thai massage with coconut oil - bliss!
Huge & very comfy beds - I found the quite hard pillows ok after I'd beaten them into shape!
There are 2 pools, but we didn't use the mountain pool - it's a bit isolated unless your room is up there, which our wasn't, but they are lovely pools & very clean. The grounds are beautifully planted - my favourite frangipani everywhere!
The coffee shop - The Sea Cow, open 10am to 10pm - is a bit odd but serves great hot & cold coffees & drinks, & sells ice creams. It is also a bakery (makes nice donuts if you need a sugar fix) but is mostly empty & the staff rarely seemed to have anything to do but were very friendly.
Tuk tuk drivers wait just outside the hotel - you don't need to walk to the road & they give you good rates - especially if you say hi to them when you're going in & out of the hotel - they'll take you up the road to Saladan, or you can hire them for a half day island tour.
Cons - the rooms have 2 showers - 1 inside & 1 open air. Many guests have commented on the grotty outside showers - come on hotel - do something - they're horrid!
The bathroom tiles & the paint in general is tired.
The sun beds are big solid wooden ones - but many are broken & you can't move them onto the beach - they're too heavy. Also, many of the pool umbrellas (at least half) are also broken & you risk them closing on you - seriously annoying when you want shade & potentially dangerous.
The wooden decking around the pool needs maintenance - loose boards & nails sticking up in a couple of places - & yet the pool is kept immaculately clean every night. Also many of the wooden pathways - whilst very pretty - are now plastic wood which is very hard & quite sharp in places on bare feet.
The reception area is a mossie trap as there is no air movement.
You have to go to reception to get wi-fi - bit of a pain but not essential.
No room safe - you have to use a safety deposit box at reception - a pain with expensive camera lens which don't fit in the deposit boxes anyway! Again - come on hotel - room safes should be easy to fit!
Our room only had one recliner chair - odd, but I sprawled on the bed mostly anyway!
No mossie coils or similar provided - but there's a 7/11 on the corner if you go out of the hotel back onto the main road - a 2 minute walk - so we used this to get provisions.
We never actually worked out how to get the mossie net set up - our headboard was fixed to the wall so you couldn't get the net around the bed - decoration maybe - but we didn't need it because of our mossie coils.
Food - perfectly good in the evenings, good menu priced slightly more than the beach bars but not much more.
Breakfast has been commented on - a perfectly good choice, but no variety & definitely getting boring after 10 days. However, it was adequate - & if you wanted big boys brekies most of the restaurants do cook breakfasts.
Our overall impression was that the hotel was coasting - it could be fantastic, but not a lot of effort was going in to making it that little bit special e.g in the evening no-one ate at the hotel - & no effort was made to attract them - yet it had a beautiful dining area & bar which inevitably shuts anytime after 9pm . For a small investment it could be better, but we did really enjoy our stay & we chilled out completely.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Royal Lanta Resort and Spa is on an idyllic island, yet with shops and restaurants close by and convenient for Krabi airport. The stylish modern bungalows, each with its own balcony and sun loungers, are close to the two pools, yet the nearby pavilion-style restaurant and bar is right on the sand. Enjoy our 'Coral Leaf Spa'. Sample our freshly-baked pastries in the 'Sea Cow Cafe' and keep in touch via the free Wi-Fi! ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Royal Lanta Hotel Ko Lanta
- Hotel Royal Lanta