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“Wonderful hotel, great location, needing a few tweaks”

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Haadtien Beach Resort
Ranked #14 of 50 Hotels in Koh Tao
Reviewed 9 January 2011

This hotel is located on a secluded beach on the East side of Ko Tao. it has only been in operation for 1 year and its facilities and rooms are new and modern. The staff are amazing, friendly and will do everything to make your stay convenient. You should try to get to know them in person as they will be more than happy to do so. The hotel is a perfect stay for a classic beach resort, away from the hustle and bustle and with romantic touch. I loved our stay there and think that I would come here again, but some things would have to change. As there is a lot of competition in the area and lots of new development.

There are however a few things that could be improved to make this hotel worth the 3500 - 6000 BHT per room rates at peak season. This is quite a high price to pay for the service offered:
1. Shuttles to the main town (Sairee/ Mai Haad): The hotel is 2.5 km from the Pier town and 4 km from Sairee village. There are only 3 scheduled one way shuttles daily for free from the hotel to the Pier and all other transportation, including return to the hotel or transport to Sairee are very expensive at 100 - 200 Bht per person. If you wish to go to town at any time, you need a taxi. It is not walking distance anywhere near..except the 1 km haul across the ridge to the nearby main road. I think they need to offer free shuttles back and forth from Sairee 4 times a day. This is the minimum they could do at the price of hotel rooms they are seeking. It is also a common practice to top hotels.
2. Big issue: the beach is beautiful. However, during the day boats of all types come to drop off and pick up people from the swimming beach!! this does not only destroy the peace and tranquility, ruin the sea with oil, but is also dangerous! I was almost run over by a long tail boat and another little girl was literally saved at the last minute. There is an area for boats at the north end of the beach, but the skippers could not care less and the tourists demand to be dropped off at the beach bar...which is in the swimming area. This would be the one reason I would not come here again. I complained to the management and they said that they try to do something about it. But it is a small bay with a short beach and the only thing they can do is put a line across the central and south side of the bay to prevent boats from getting close to the beach. This is what is done in other small bays in Ko Tao. 1/3 north part can be left for boats.
3. Meals and prices at the restaurant: There is only one restaurant at the hotel that serves both the beach and the lunches and dinners. The food is not bad and they will also go out of their way to make dishes you like, but are not on the menu. However, you have no other options for dining except taking a shuttle out. They monopoly price the dishes, making it an average meal of 15-20 usd per person if you include drinks. At the same time there are no hawkers allowed to wonder the beach during the day to offer snacks and other quick bytes. Making your only option the hotel restaurant. When you are a number of families with many kids, this is annoying and expensive. It would be nice if they had another food outlet with cheaper local food (1/2 price of restaurant) for those who do not prefer a sit down menu. One alternative is to walk up the north hill and eat at the eagle view restaurant which is slightly cheaper.
4. And forget about high speed internet. There is internet sometimes. sometimes not. But that is ok.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled with family
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1  Thank shunra11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 15 November 2010

The room was quiet, clean and comfortable with a good balcony looking towards the beach. The beach was lovely and clean and the sea pretty good for snorkelling. A nice little beach bar was on hand too. The restaurant was lovely and the food pretty good, and very reasonably priced. The staff were excellent. Very helpful andvery very friendly. The resort was quite empty when we were there but, apart from that, it was a lovely relaxed place.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank MartBeck
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 September 2010

We were upgraded on our arrival to one of the castaway villas on the beach, which resemble the photos online and are in good, clean condition.

We were warned before arriving that some building works were going on, there was some noise but it didn’t last all day and didn’t really bother us too much.

The location of the resort is probably its best point, it really feels as though you are on a desert island, but you have the best of both worlds as its only a short car journey to the bars and restaurants of Sairee beach. We got up at dawn a few mornings and took a short swim from the beach to go snorkelling and were lucky enough to see Black tip sharks. We also hired a Kayak out for free to a snorkelling spot close by. Other than that, there isn’t much to do at the resort (or within walking distance), but its perfect for relaxing on a beautiful beach with clear sea.

The main bad point would be the food – breakfast was average and the flies in the restaurant were unbearable. We ate lunch there once, but it was not good and put us off eating there again. The shuttle service wasn’t ideal either as the last one back was at 9.30pm from the pier, but we spent most nights at sairee beach which is further on (and a bit more lively), so had to get taxis back most nights.

I also would have expected slightly better surroundings for the cost, which could easily be improved. Eg. Our sun beds were positioned right in front of a bush/tree which blocked the view of the beach and the grass was very overgrown surrounding them, which put us off using them – it would have been nice to have some on the beach.

But overall, we were pleased with our stay at Haad Tien, things could be improved, but in general our villa was very clean & the beach was a peaceful place to relax.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank sunny1983uk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 September 2010

Had a Castaway Beach Villa for a week in August - in a word, 'Awesome'.

The room was exactly as it appears on the HT website - very nicely furnished and with some real sensitivity to creating an atmosphere of island getaway, without that being the familar, bland interpretation. IMO a really nicely thought through design - warm woods, quality furnishings and, of course, with a folding glass wall offering a view directly onto the beach and turquise waters of the bay.

The day bed on the deck was great - had a massage there every day to ease away the stresses and strains of another day sipping coconut juice and snorkelling with fish, turtles and sharks - its a tough life at HT. You have a couple of sun-loungers on the beach to work on the tan - plus a nice umbrella to offer shade when you need it in case you aren't already under the palm trees.

There have been some posts about the beach and 'other people' having the nerve to be there. Here's my thoughts on that. It is not a private beach, end of chat. Apparently all beaches in Thailand are public access - accept it and just enjoy. HT occupies most of the bay, but there are (much) smaller neighbouring resorts and you can't exactly stop boats dropping visitors off without running counter to the ethos of the place?

Location - HT's location is simply beautiful - a fantastic bay, with a green backdrop up into the hills. Yes, there is coral in the water - this is Koh Tao remember - which means loads of fish to swim with and if you go further out reef sharks and turtles as mentioned - plenty of opportunity to swim 'properly' out there, although tides (please, blame the Moon not the resort??) can mean it is sometimes difficult (not impossible) to get a good swim close in to the beach. The other comment raised is the access road - yes, this is 'unfinished' - in my mind, that adds to the charm of the place but if you want to be close, or have easy access, to nightlife action you should probably look for somewhere on Sairee. I was there 10 years ago - overdeveloped and a horror compared to what it once was. In fairness, HT does note the location point when making your reservation btw.

Restaurant - I found the food to be really good and by no means the worst I had over the two weeks in Thailand. OK, the breakfast is a bit weak, but the lunch/dinner menu is fine and the grill was great. The real stars though are the staff - utterly charming, friendly and extremely attentive - always interested, happy to have a chat or share a joke. I stayed in a 5 star place on Samui after Koh Tao and can honestly say that Jane, Nam and the rest of the guys at HT could teach them a thing or two about client service.

Other client service - here are a few more examples. Moe, the guy that humped my luggage over to the room after I checked in - every day thereafter, he popped round to ask me if everything was alright, if I needed anything or if there was anything he could do or get done for me. Tum, 'bartenderess' in the beach bar - each day, wandered along to check if she could get me anything to drink or eat; always with a big smile. Ann and the housekeeping girls - always left the room spotless and folded the towels to look like elephants; again, always with a big smile and sharing a joke. All these things have an effect on you and you can't help feeling 'recharged' by the really positive energy from the people in the team at HT. They may not be perfect by Four Seasons standards - but thank heavens for that; a bit of humanity??

Final point. No, this is not the Four Seasons. If that's the sort of holiday experience you are after, I really struggle to understand why you are looking at Koh Tao. Haad Tien is exactly what it says on the tin/website - a boutique hotel, with fantastic rooms in a really beautiful location that offers a slice of paradise as long as you are able to accept marginal imperfection from time to time. I went there to relax - mission accomplished, and will definitely be back.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled solo
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4  Thank MoscowE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 September 2010

We were upgraded to a castaway villa which was awesome.... great location...shark bay is very nice which also explains for the many outside visitors, so you shouldn't expect to have the beach to yourselves. Pool is under construction as extra bungalows so better prepare for some building noises, and ask for accommodation away from the construction site.
Breakfast is very basic, should be upgraded urgently. You can even find better breakfast in shabby highway cafes.
Shuttle service to sairee comes in handy.
Service is ok, especially Mo. Staff speaks relatively good english compared to staff in other hotels in thailand.
Give the resort a year or two to finish up with all its construction works and hopefully, improve their breakfast, and it will be the best you can get to on koh tao...hope prices will then remain at same level as it's already a bit to the expensive side.

  • Stayed: September 2010
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Thank Bo-Boheme
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 September 2010

We stayed in a Cottage at the Haad Tien for 7 nights. The room was adequate and the beach was really nice. It had the potential to a great hotel but the basics let it down (which were all excellent in the other 3 hotels we stayed in during our trip to Thailand). We only paid £40 for the room and thought value for money was poor, but we were glad we were not staying in any of the considerably more expensive rooms.

Negatives:

• Limited shuttle times to the pier / Saire Beach
• No effort made to give the restaurant ambiance in the evening
• Flies everywhere when we were eating – We did not get this anywhere else on the Island and the hotel made no effort to eliminate them.
• Food was poor and bland, and the worst we had in Thailand.
• Staff were not that friendly or helpful.
• Building works – Although not that bad, the drilling noise was not exactly the piece and tranquillity we were after. They did not seem that concerned that it was going on.
• Massages – Massages could only be performed in your room, which I do not enjoy as much as on the beach or in a designated massage room

Also it is worth noting that whilst the beach is great and there is fantastic snorkelling, if it is low tide then it is very difficult to do any swimming / snorkelling due to the correl.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank jpcj102
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 September 2010

We stayed at The HaadTien in early August 2010.
A family with 3 children.
We had 2 Hideaway Villas. The cottages were nice, comfortable and well equipped.
Walking from one cottage to another was not so easy.

The location was magnificent .
The beach was quite with only few people around.
You can swim safely, relax and have a good snorkeling there, very close to the beach.

The restaurant offers a nice range of Thai and International dishes: the food is of a good quality served by a friendly staff.

The staff is very friendly and efficient, managed by Mr Jan, the hotel manager. He is very helpful and the first one to help you in everything you need.

The payment is something a bit annoying. They insist on a 50% upon ordering and the balance upon arrival.
I would also say that the it is overpriced.

All in all – it was a very good place for staying.
It might deserve the title of the best spots in all our trip to Thailand.

4 out of 5 because of the price.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled with family
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Thank Shiri_Sh_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Haadtien Beach Resort

Address: 19/9 Moo 3, Koh Tao 84360, Thailand
Phone Number:
Region: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Koh Tao
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Koh Tao
#4 Luxury Hotel in Koh Tao
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Koh Tao
Price Range: £65 - £241 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Haadtien Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 70
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
HaadtienBeach Resort is a boutique destination set in a stunning backdrop of beachfront panoramas, featuring its own 380 metre secluded beach situated at the southern tip of Koh Tao. The property contains 70 private villas thoughtfully spaced amongst over 45 acres of land, which features a stunning natural bay, perfect for swimming and snorkeling. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Haad Tien Beach Hotel Koh Tao

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