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“A missed opportunity, but some good.”
Review of Zeavola Resort

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Zeavola Resort
Ranked #1 of 38 Hotels in Ko Phi Phi Don
Certificate of Excellence
Thailand
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
“A missed opportunity, but some good.”
Reviewed 20 August 2014

I've lived in Asia for over 5 years and now am in Bangkok. If you see my other reviews, you'll get it.

I'm gonna be brief on this one.

1. Check your room type, they advertise 4 room types (with different rates) but actually merged two types. There are no rooms with 'private gardens for sunbathing' as their website describes. The GM admitted this was an error. But not after quite a long embarrassing discussion in the reception area. I felt this could have been better handled. To his credit we did end up with better rooms and we were satisfied with the outcome. However it could have been handled better.

2. Whilst we stayed the majority of the staff at the hotel were from the Philippines. I've been told (over dinner with the GM) that this was a cost benefit to the company (they don't receive tips, for example) and he intimated that he wasn't in favour of the policy. I felt this made it an uncomfortable stay for me, knowing one group weren't earning or having the same opportunity as another. I also felt it somewhat removed the 'Thainess' when you're not meeting any Thais on check-in or on the end of a call (plenty in the garden though). The GM told us that most people 'wouldn't notice anyway' which I thought was a little insincere and somewhat disingenuous.

3. The rooms are beautiful, no doubt. There's a lot of open space. I don't get bitten - but if you do, you'll be eaten alive. The children ended up looking like pizzas. So take your DEET.

4. The beach was messy and untidy. Didn't seem like the hotel took responsibility for the beach, so it's not as beautiful as other parts of the beach run by less famous hotels.

5. One of our children was sick, and to the credit of the hotel, they summoned a nurse immediately. This was impressive.

6. But genuinely, this hotel feels like it's gone a bit 'stir-crazy'. The GM seems so impassioned in doing things his way, but not always the right way and was somewhat irregular in his responses to our questions (they weren't complaints, he sat and had a bottle of wine with us).

It sincerely felt like it needs a root to tip rethink in approach, to guests, it's employees and the island it sits on. It's stunning, well designed, but just feels very isolated from the area. It's hard to describe, tell me I'm wrong, but I feel like something was missing. Possibly soul.

Room Tip: Ensure you check what room you are buying: the website is NOT correct.
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank Jonathan S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FlorianPhiPhiIsland, General Manager at Zeavola Resort, responded to this review, 21 August 2014
Dear Jonathan,
Thank you very much for your detailed impression from your stay at the Zeavola. I would like to mention I’m living since 25 years in Asia and in the last 10 years in Thailand. Please allow me to clarify several points.

The resort has 4 room categories as stated and priced. We did not merge any of the categories in any kind. As you wrote our website description about private garden could have been misinterpreted since only some of the villas have garden areas. These gardens are created with plantation, not with walls which would be against our Thai village concept. Acknowledging this we have removed this description from the website to avoid any further miss understandings.

In regards to the room allocation for your party, I would like to state that the issue was resolved within 5 minutes, after my arrival by showing some other rooms which as you stated was to everybody’s satisfaction. If this situation embarrassed you we feel deeply sorry and apologize.

Our resort, while being truly Thai, does employ foreigners and frequently gives trainees from other countries a chance to further their education.
At that time we had 157 employees, from that number we had 1 Austrian, 1 Egyptian, 1 English and 11 Trainees from the Philippines. According to our agreement with the University they received training in the Front office and in Food & Beverage. Therefore they might be more visible to our hotel guests than the gardeners, engineers or housekeeping staff. As anywhere else in this world trainees are on a different salary scheme than any other fultime employee. This has nothing to do with a cost benefit for the company at all. These young people are preparing themselves for an open job market which will be implemented in 2015 similar to the European Community. They also assisted the Thai staff in their efforts of learning English. They integrated very well as they got accustomed to Thai traditions and the Thai language. All in all it is a win win win situation as they got a lot of very good comments from our guests in team work with our Thai staff.

During the rainy season unfortunately there is a lot of garbage on the beach arriving via the sea. My gardening team is cleaning the beach up to 3 x per day to ensure that everything is nice and pretty. We also involve ourselves in many community activities such as beach cleaning in other parts of the island, reef cleaning and setting of buoys to avoid anchor damage. We also support the local primary school by cooking for the kids every Friday with “Kids friendly” and healthy meals in order to give something back to the community. We invite our guests to be part of these activities when conducted.

In the last 7 years the resort team was able to create the Zeavola Family, which operates this hotel with a lot of enthusiasm and personal engagement, which is well received and acknowledged by our guests as documented in many other very positive comments on this website. We love to hear about impressions and ideas of our guests to further improve our service delivery. In some cases we need to look back at our experience in running this hotel and rely on our proven ways.

I personally enjoyed our evening together discussing many aspects of the hotel operation. I did not know that I was on an interview chair to be judged later. I just enjoyed a bottle of wine together with very nice and interesting guests.
Once again thank you for your comments and impressions, the Zeavola Family will take them on board to further improve our services and our product. We wish you a successful and healthy 2014
Florian and the Zeavola Family.
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English first
Wombourne, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 17 August 2014

I stayed here with my husband and 17 year old daughter in August 2014.
It's a true paradise spot stay. From the minute you get off the speed boat, when you are welcomed with cold damp cloths to cool you down, you are looked after. The accommodation is quirky but very comfortable. And fits well into its surroundings. The staff are all friendly and helpful. The location is good for visiting the other parts of the island by long tailed boat.

Would defiantly go back.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Diane M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FlorianPhiPhiIsland, General Manager at Zeavola Resort, responded to this review, 21 August 2014
Dear Diane,
Thank you very much for your great comments and lovely description. We are delighted that your family had such a good time at the Zeavola. We would be very happy to welcome you back and once again create an excellent experience in our hotel.

The Zeavola Family is wishing you all a successful second half of 2014, stay healthy and wonderful.
Florian and the Zeavola Family
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The Netherlands
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 13 August 2014

During my stay at Koh Phi Phi I made 8 beautiful dives with Zeavola. I contacted them before I went to Thailand and I received a very good and complete answer on all my questions. Everything was organised very well. Because of the low season 7 of the 8 dives were private and all on another dive site around Koh Phi Phi. My non-diving girlfriend could enjoy snorkling during the dives and between the dives (2 on 1 day) we could enjoy a very nice lunch on a small (abandoned) beach. The rental equipment was of good quality (Scubapro) and condition. The dives sites were all beautiful, with a lot of different kinds of fish and corals, turtle, seahorse, stingray, Nemo, it was all there. So diving at Koh Phi Phi is defenitly worth it (even in low season)! All personal is very friendly, patiently and willing to help you wherever they can, a special thanks goes out to Jenny.

Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank RobertW01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FlorianPhiPhiIsland, General Manager at Zeavola Resort, responded to this review, 21 August 2014
Dear Robert,
Thank you very much for your positive description of your dive experiences. Being in one of the nicest Marine National Parks the diving on Phi Phi island is truly memorable. My Zeavola Dive team would like to extend our 5 star service philosophy into the dive experience. Like this the team will prepare all the equipment and the dive boat prior to the guests arrival. Like this our Zeavola Guests can just hop on the boat and enjoy their dives, their lunch and the excellent local knowledge of our team.
Robert we would be very happy to welcome you back for more diving. Stay healthy and successful in the second half of 2014. The Zeavola Family is wishing you the very best.
Florian
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Madrid, Spain
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 August 2014

After visiting bangkok and the North of Thailand during eight days we planned a visit to Phi Phi Islands, and booked in Zeavola. The resort is on the North side of the Koh Phi Phi Don island, with white sand and emerald waters.
The staff was incredible friendly, both Abdala and Florian and the rest of them. Stayed on a garden villa made of tropical wood, very spacious and very elegantely done up, with all the stuff of a luxury hotel room but in the middle of paradaise. For me, the best experience was taking an outdoor shower in the middle of a storm.
The cooking superb, with european an thai dishes properly cooked and on time, served front to the beach.
We enjoyed the stay in the villa as much as we enjoyed Koh Phi; all in all, highly recommended.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jesus S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FlorianPhiPhiIsland, General Manager at Zeavola Resort, responded to this review, 21 August 2014
Dear Jesus,
Thank you very much for your very positive comments and description of the resort. Both Abdalla and me would like to ensure that all our guests are enjoying their holiday with us. It is really our staff team which we call the Zeavola Family, which makes the guest experience so positive, we only help and build close relationships to our guests.

Thank you for your great comments about the food. We have shared this with our Exec. Chef as well as the team. They are delighted that we have been able to cook up a storm for you.

Have a good second half of 2014, stay healthy and successful, we are all looking forward to welcome you back to the island one day.

Florian and the Zeavola Family.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Liverpool, England, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 August 2014

I absolutely fell in love with this resort! Genuinely everything I had ever dreamt of! The hotel is situated on a private white sand/blue sea beach and the villas are amongst gorgeous green trees and plants. Each villa is decorated beautifully and it was like nothing I had ever experienced before. The villas are like little tree houses and it's such a different place to stay, I loved every minute. The beach is very relaxing - they have huge comfortable pillows for you to lounge on whilst sipping on their gorgeous fruity cocktails and watching boats sail by. The food was the best I'd had in the whole of Thailand - definitely try the lamb massaman curry! The service is incredible - the staff are all really friendly and helpful especially the ones working on the reception desk. We only stayed here for two nights (I wish it could've been longer) and we didn't actually leave the resort once because we loved it so much. Such a quaint and tranquil retreat and I'd definitely go back again and again. My only criticism is that our bathroom had a nasty sewage-like smell. This did not disrupt the holiday at all as we didn't spend much time in there, but for the price we paid, we expected perfection so this was slightly disappointing. Other than that, the resort is just what dreams are made of and I cannot praise it enough. Thank you for a lovely and peaceful break.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Alix M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FlorianPhiPhiIsland, General Manager at Zeavola Resort, responded to this review, 21 August 2014
Dear Alix M,
Wow what a grand review. Thank you very much, we truly appreciate your good comments.
I have discussed with my housekeeping and engineering team to get to your villa and stop this bad smell you have written about. Obviously this is not how we would like to present our bath room.

Otherwise it seems that you enjoyed our beach which we try to keep as clean as possible. Also our Bean bags were to your liking. These big pillows make our beach very comfortable and chilled. We received many good comments about them.

Thank you very much for your kind comments about our team. Everyone of my staff members tries to make our guests happy and relaxed. We are glad that was also your impression.

We wish you an excellent end of Summer. Stay healthy and successful and contemplate when you can visit us again. We look very much forward to welcome you back to the Zeavola.
Florian and the Zeavola Family
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Phuket, Thailand
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 9 August 2014 via mobile

Anchored just off the zeavola resort and went ashore for dinner. Was greeted by the charming resort manager Florian and treated to a magnificent meal. The staff are attentive and courteous, obviously happy and contributed to a great meal experience. Recommend a visit.

Stayed August 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Sean S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FlorianPhiPhiIsland, General Manager at Zeavola Resort, responded to this review, 21 August 2014
Dear Sean,
It was nice to see you again, thank you for your very positive comments. It is great to hear that your charter guests enjoyed their stop over on Phi Phi island. It is always great to have the professional team from Sunsail and Moorings anchoring at our hotel. We are wishing you a great sailing season and fair winds.
See you again sometimes on our shores.
Sail good stay successful and healthy.
Florian and the Zeavola family
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London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 8 August 2014

Our family of 5 (three children aged 7-11) have just spent two action packed days at the Zeavola resort on Kho Phi Phi. From the moment we boarded the twin hull speedboat from Phuket we knew we were in safe hands - a stable and fast crossing in choppy seas meant we arrived Exhilarated to a personal welcome from Florian the manager at their private beach and were shown to our Eco-cabins each with indoor and outdoor living areas and outdoor showers, discretely screened for privacy.

The hotel is barefoot with traditional buckets and ladles for washing your feet before entering the rooms.

We had planned to spend a day snorkelling knowing that out of season windows in the weather would make it difficult - but Zeavola's knowledgeable dive team took charge and before long we were swimming with the cast of Finding Nemo on the Island's navigable East coast. It should be noted that August makes much of the West side of the Island difficult to reach - but we were delighted to find calm waters for the kids - something unavailable in Khao Lak or Phuket beaches that time of year.

Food was excellent and despite options along the beach we know we could not have eaten better than at the hotel - with great Thai dishes offered all day, and a tranquil star lit setting for dinner.

One last word for the wood decked Spa high in the hills to the back of the resort: Excellent.
Less expensive than some other resorts the treatments and setting were perfect.

Thanks Florian for an excellent stay - and Tam for looking after us on our day on the seas!

Room Tip: Best view of the sea from the lower cabins - greatest privacy higher up.
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank robshaw99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FlorianPhiPhiIsland, General Manager at Zeavola Resort, responded to this review, 21 August 2014
Dear Robshaw99,
Thank you very much for your long and very positive review. It makes us very happy that you and your family have enjoyed their stay. Kids with 5 and 7 need to run around free and discover the world, so we are happy that they had a good time to snorkel on our weather protected side.
Our beach is facing East, so its well protected in the low season, even my 4 year old daughter goes swimming there.

I have shared your comments with our Dive team and we are happy that you and your family had such memorable impressions about the snorkeling.

My Executive Chef is delighted to hear that you all enjoyed his food and is sharing this also with his team.

Our spa is a quiet place and we dont make too much noise about it, but the therapists are excellent and enjoy relaxing everybody to the most. Thank you for your positive comment on them.

Dear Rob, to you and your Family all the very best. Stay healthy and Successful and come again sometimes when the boys are bigger. Then we show them how to dive.
Florian and the Zeavola Family.
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Additional Information about Zeavola Resort

Property: Zeavola Resort
Address: 11 Moo 8 Laem Tong, Koh Phi Phi | Ao Nang, Muang, Ko Phi Phi Don 81000, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Krabi Province > Ko Phi Phi Don
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Ko Phi Phi Don
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Ko Phi Phi Don
#1 Spa Hotel in Ko Phi Phi Don
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Ko Phi Phi Don
#3 Family Hotel in Ko Phi Phi Don
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Zeavola Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 53
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Zeavola Hotel Ko Phi Phi Don
Zeavola Hotel Krabi
Zeavola Resort Krabi

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