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“Overpriced wanna-be”

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Koh Tao Bamboo Huts
Ranked #35 of 142 Speciality Lodging in Koh Tao
Reviewed 27 July 2014

Who:
Early 40ties male and two children (11 y.o. Girl, 8 y.o. Boy)

Where:
From Bangkok to koh tao by second class sleeper train.
Then by lomprey bus/boat to ko tao.

Why?
The aim/hope was to find a nice, beautiful not to fancy beach with some nice snorkling like Gili (indnosia) or Perentiens (malaysia)

Because i was traveling with my kids i had prebooked 5 nights (of a total 11) at Bamboo huts / Charm Churee. Even though it is markedet as two separate hotels, they share all facilities and are basically one unit.

Check in was slow, tedious by poor english by the burmeese staff.

Grounds:
As mentioned before, very steep terrain. Ok for us but impossible if you need a baby trolly or if you are the least physically unfit. We quickly got fed up with the very long walk from our hut (bb 13, see map in photo) to the breakfast.

General feel
Very worn, old-dish. Trying to sell this as and ecco resort is just sad. The concrete pathways are very uneven, bamboo rails worn with missing parts. Grounds littered with old leaves (and garbage). The general feeling is more one of lack of upkeep than ecco-untouch-ness.

The Jansombay is a nice small beach with ok snorkling, esp to the left side and out around the 3 rocks. However, not good enough to warrent the cost of the hut/bungalow.

Hut/bungalow (BB 13)
Simple bamboohut, ok interior, not charming or memorable. Moskito net had holes. Aircon ok, quiet and effective. Attached, outside bath (2), again nothing special. Robes and slippers provided, again non impresive quality. View was nice esp for sunset, the sound of the ocean, else very quiet.
Cost around 6500 B/night but we were charged additional 2500B/night for an extra bed for one of the kids!
After complaining price was lowered to 1500B .
A total of 8000 B/night.
This is soo overpriced considering the quality of the place.

Food/dining
Breakfast was included and was a sad affair.
General poor quality of everything from the "pancakes" and so called croisants (unedible), to the pot cofee and cheep youghurt.
Slices of watermellon and pinaple and a mix of less know fruits.
This is served in the quite dilapidated eating area, so at least the food match the exteriors.
Service is confused, mostly due to poor language skills however in some odd ways they try to behave like it was a five star resort.
During dinner they unfurl the napkin and place it in your lap!?
A gesture SO out of touch with the rest of the experience.
This is a very basic, but massively overpriced, thaibeach restaurent with the odd illusion of grandour. A 30-40% price reduction and a 50% increase in quality would make things acceptable.

So, in short:
Overpriced, poor service and food however Jansom bay is nice.
Solution: stay in the MUCH nicer, and cheeper, Sensi located next door (see my separate review) or at the more primitive but very nice and basic place (no AC) over at the next beach. You can then walk to jansom bay for the snorkling.

Would i recomend or return?
Sadly ko tao is now so developed the it has lost its charm, it is like koh samuii was 10 years ago.
I shall not ever return to Bamboo huts/Charm chuu village nor is it likely that i will visit koh tao again. For unspoilt paradise you need to go elsewhere

A note on diving
Koh tao is a nice place to learn to dive, if you are allready an experienced diver, i would recommend going elsewhere as most of the dive sites are very easy and, in my view, not too interesting.
Try to go to Sail rock and the two sites named chimneys, all 3 quite far from the island.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
7  Thank Rawlpluks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 30 June 2014

What an incredible bamboo hut!! The view was just amazing. The hut was large and quirky. We had a hut with our own pool and I think it was totally worth it! The ladies at reception were very welcoming and their starlight restaurant is a great asset. There are a few details you should be aware of when booking though. Depending which hut you have, there could be lot of walking and stairs involved and even for the avid walker, it gets a bit much. I did feel the hut was beginning to look a little tired and dated. The TV had an extensive selection but not a single one in English. Also our wifi only worked intermittently.

Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Kerrie H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 June 2014 via mobile

I did not enjoy my experience at the Bamboo Huts but this was mainly because of the rough weather! After spending a week in Koh Samui at a beautiful resort we had a bit of a shock when we arrived here! The photos had looked so beautiful and I was very excited to stay! However after a terribly rough/scary ferry trip over we arrived at Bamboo Huts and felt very disappointed! The staff were very friendly and helpful taking us to our hut however when we arrived I felt very uneasy due to the waves crashing up on the rocks splashing on our deck! Of course no fault of the resort! We asked for a higher room for the night and they were more than happy to help and moved us on to a slightly higher hut. I had a terrible night sleep (2hours) tops because of the howling sea. We were meant to stay for three nights however we decided to leave straight away in the morning and head to koh phangan.
The research that I had done prior to our trip made bamboo huts look beautiful and peaceful, this is not the experience we had - however it was mainly due to weather.
The staff are all very friendly and helpful. Would only recommend to stay here if you are fit and don't mind trekking over step tracks to the restaurant and reception and like to be fairly isolated!
This place surely wasn't for me but I am sure it could be a much nicer experience with better weather!

Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
2  Thank Pip K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 June 2014

This was our first visit to Thailand, and we absolutely loved Koh Tao.
We arrived at the pier by boat and were greeted by the friendly driver who took us directly to the Charm Churee reception. The roads are quite windy and bumpy so it was a pretty interesting ride in the back of the small jeep. At reception we were welcomed and given an ice-cold juice which was very much appreciated. The Bamboo Huts - as part of the Charm Churee Resort - is amazingly beautiful, we stayed in Hut 6 and thought it was stunning.
We loved the feeling like we were part of a Robinson Crusoe story, with the winding pathway up the hill from Jansom Bay down to the hut right on the water's edge on the rocks. The outdoor shower is amazing and we loved using it everyday while watching the ocean and boats go by while still feeling like it was private.
The daily breakfast buffet at the Starlight restaurant is outstandingly good, with the view over the bays absolutely beautiful and the staff always polite, friendly and much appreciated.
We also ate at the Starlight Restaurant every night and loved it so much we never wanted to go anywhere else. They have a huge range of excellent quality, good prices and all beautifully presented.
We'd like to make special mention of our host, So, who made us feel special and really welcome everyday, with his friendly conversation, island travel tips and great laughter.
So works long hours everyday, at both the breakfast buffet, Jansom bay bar and Starlight restaurant and he helped make our stay so memorable.
When we did venture back to the pier area, we ate at Cafe Del Sol which was really good and can highly recommend it for their filled baguettes and coconut Lassi drinks. Also don't miss trying the fresh ice-cooled coconuts from any of the little shops along the side roads.
To summarise, choose Bamboo huts for an unforgettably beautiful location and experience, but bear in mind you will to be quite fit and able as there is a lot of walking required with steep hill steps. After 4 days we didn't want to leave - it really is a paradise in Koh Tao.
We highly recommend Bamboo huts!

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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1  Thank Jo_and_Steve220
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 May 2014

I really don't no where to begin. What a truly stunning place to visit.
We stayed in a pool room for 3 nights (room bb1) and 2 nights in the large pool room (bb18a). The pool room was beautiful, loved our little hut, the outdoor shower and our very own pool with amazing views. I thought you just could not get better than this ... Then we stayed in the large pool room ... WOW! This room is probably double the size of our previous hut, the outdoor area was double the size, as was the amazing infinity pool.
Before deciding to book this hotel, please be sure to understand you are booking a bamboo hut. The huts are scattered around and depending on where you are located, it can be a decent walk to reception or restaurant. Both rooms we stayed in were a 10/15 min walk and at times not the easiest walk, but the views and nature around is stunning.
Jansom Bay (the hotel beach) is stunning,coral right at your toes! You just step one foot in and you have fish everywhere. Get out as well and see the coral all around Koh Tao as it's all beautiful.
This place is rustic and natural, that is what I love about it. They try not to spoil what they have.
Loved our stay and would love to visit again!

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Luana82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 May 2014 via mobile

We only stayed for two nights there but it was heaven on earth. The bungalows look great and not to say about the view. It was incredible waking up in the morning and just sit on our own terrace and relax in front of that spectacular view. The rooms are very big and cozy and some of the bathrooms even have two showers (inside and outside).
The staff is very friendly. They even pick you up by car from the bungalow to the reception and the way back because the resort is built on steep rocks and it gets difficult to go up and down too many stairs and especially when it is so hot outside. The resort has it's own bay beach where you can see so many different fish while snorkeling. We even saw a few reef sharks - it was incredible! At night we highly recommend their restaurant - the food, the location, the staff, everything was perfect. We would definitely choose it once more if we travel again to Ko Tao.

Stayed: May 2014, travelled with friends
Thank Maria M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 May 2014

Bamboo Huts is very private and rustic- we really enjoyed our stay here but are not sure we'd stay here again. Value for money - we are on the fence. We did not find anything 'special' other than the view. We were first put in BB12 which was very disappointing when we first walked in as there was a massage hut infront of us which spoilt the view. Reception was very accommodating to move us.
We did want something remote- and Bamboo Huts is definitely remote. The rooms are nice but the views are spectacular. The snorkeling is very good here. The hospitality staff are very friendly, the breakfast location is one of the best I've ever been to, and dinner location is also stunning. Food and drink prices are expensive compared to the rest of the island.
The negatives for us were that reception didn't have a 'tourist information' desk and we did encounter a few 'language barriers'. We are a fit, young couple, but in the April heat, and all those stairs- we did find our hut a far walk and by the end of the trip- we didn't want to see another step! Our legs and knees were sore from walking back and forth to the hut. You tend to take everything with you for the day so you don't have to keep coming back as it is a good 10-15 minute walk from the reception/breakfast bar to the hut.
Overall- for a couple looking to 'get away from it all' and who plan to not venture too far- I'm sure Bamboo Hut will tick all your boxes.
I'd suggest hiring a bike to get around as the start of town is about a 20+ minute walk one way and if you want to eat out in town- the cost of a taxi each day may add up.

Room Tip: Try avoid BB12 - we were put in this room and asked to move as there is a massage hut infront of you...
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank KKAdventures
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Koh Tao Bamboo Huts

Address: 30/2 Jax Trek, Koh Tao 84360, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Koh Tao
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #35 of 142 Speciality Lodging in Koh Tao
Price Range: £101 - £180 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Koh Tao Bamboo Huts 3.5*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A low-impact, eco-friendly, natural-oriented resort right on the cliff. All rooms are sunset unobstructed seaview. Some of the rooms come with private pool. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Koh Tao Bamboo Huts Hotel Koh Tao

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