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“Cool Resort”

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Ao Kao White Sand Beach Resort
Ranked #3 of 15 Hotels in Ko Mak
Certificate of Excellence
Prague, Czech Republic
Level Contributor
26 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Cool Resort”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 January 2013

We were originally tempted to stay in this resort, it has got the best location with the longest sandy beach on the island, but in the end we were glad we didnt, resort is one of the "posh" ones on the island, chosen mostly by families with kids or groups for partying, we like kids and partying, but not on quiet holiday, resort is also bigger so definitely not as quiet as the other ones. So we eneded up staying on the other side of the island, it was really small and quiet place (Ao Pong - only six bungallows) and were coming (by rented bike) to this beach every second day (mixing with our beach in Ao Pong) - if you walk to the right side from the resort, beach gets deserted and you find private spots to chill out.
Anyway, this resort has got great restaurant with excellent seafood dishes&fruit shakes&proper coffee from machine, not instant, if You like cocktails, there is a bar next to the restaurant, they also provide snorchelling trips to the other island or massage directly in resort, there is a free wifi in restaurant.

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank drissha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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190 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (21)
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English first
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 January 2013

We had a fantastic time at Ao Kao - it was just what we needed. There were, of course, a couple of negatives which we'll give first. We booked by email and were initially under-quoted by quite a lot! Thankfully we became aware of this before arriving on the island. We asked to be booked on the speed boat to Ko Mak, but it turned out we weren't. Fortunately there was plenty of space, no problem. Then when we arrived, we were not in the room we booked - but the one we were given was better, so can't complain. Any frustrations pale into insignificance compared to the great time we had in this delightful place.

Others have commented on the lack of English spoken by the staff - but this very much depends on who you speak to. Personally, we don't mind - we can't expect the whole world to speak our language and for us, relationship is more important and all the staff were very warm and friendly.

The buffet breakfast was fab - our favourite option was to take some of the thin pancakes and pile on some fresh fruit, yoghurt, syrup and bacon. That, along with fresh coffee, has to be the ultimate start to a lazy day. The beach-side bar with PK's excellent cocktails (2 for 1 during happy 4-hours) and some BBQed fish was a great way to wrap things up, followed by one of the many free DVDs we could watch in our room.

The room (Talay Deo 3) was great (includes safe, TV, fridge) - near the beach and restaurant but not noisy at all - though that would, of course, depend on who the other guests are. The massages were also very good. The ambiance and layout of the resort is great, though we think that the three new concrete block-style bungalows spoil the look of the place. They are very nice rooms, but don't seem to fit. They also block what must have been a good view from some of the other bungalows.

We did get bitten by sandflies, but only really started itching once we had returned to Bangkok. At the end of the day, this is Asia... if it's not sand-flies, it'll be mossies or some other biting thing. Take insect repellent and antihistamine cream just in case. The hotel staff do rake the sand and clean the beach each day. They also have a net around the swimming area which, presumably, stops any of the jellyfish that we heard can be around. Note: the availability of good sea for swimming is dependent on when the tides are in and out - not a lot a hotel can do about that!

Like other visitors to the island, we took a look at other hotels and feel pretty confident that we picked the best one to suit our needs - we also prefer to have a south-facing beach. Ao Kao had a good combo of being near to some other places but far enough away from the busier section which, frankly, was surprisingly quiet!

In terms of what to do - that's assuming you're not happy to spend all your time lazing around - we strongly recommend taking out a moped for the day (250 Bhat for 24 hr from a little shop on the road 10 mins from the hotel - and 50 Baht for 1 L petrol). We had a great time buzzing around the whole island. If you head north, you'll see some small fishing villages and rubber plantations - very interesting. Ao Kao have just bought some motorised push-bikes which look fun. We also strongly recommend the cooking lesson at Smile Kok Mak Thai Cooking School. Leng was delightful - and a good instructor.

Could write more, but probably should stop here!

We sincerely hope we get to visit the island again and if we do, we'll definitely go back to Ao Kao.

Room Tip: We liked the Talay Deo rooms (2, 3, 4 probably best) and Lanna 2, 3, 4, 5 also look good. Don't...
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank MarmotsOnTour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 November 2012

Our honeymoon starts in Ao Kao,and a can tell you:this is a great place to be together all day long, just total relax!Koh Mak is too small to spent many time to discover it, and everything you'll want to do is walk on the other beaches. Stuff was absolutely great, they are become to be your friends, find answers to all your questions. Food not SO expensive, you must understand that's an island, and you pay for boat gasoline also:)Beach was perfect,clean,i've never seen even small peace of paper there. Seaview bungalows are great for sunsets, try to book them. If you're going to relax, to do nothing, to drink great coctails on the beach bar with the great bartender - that place for you!

  • Stayed October 2012
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank RomANastasia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
51 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 August 2012

This is the second time my family visited Ao Kao in the last 2 months, I joined them this time and was impressed with the friendliness of the staff and how well they took care of us. Very family friendly place, where they really love children and so unlike europe where children are considered a pest in most places. Nevertheless the place is big enough and the bungalows are spread out enough that guests won't be disturbed by eachother.

And a specially worth mentioning the food, really awesome quality, and this is even the low season, must be better and bigger selection in high season.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
3 Thank Traveller2theworld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 July 2012

Looking for a romantic get away for me and my gf I booked a beach bungalow for 2 nights including breakfast via agoda.com for a good rate at this family owned and -run resort. Took Lelawadee speedboat from the Laem Ngob pier to the Ao Kao pier. Upon arrival found that there were no (songtaew) taxi's available and the pier otherwise was deserted too as it is low season and not many tourists come to the island. How to get to the resort? Going any further was as good as impossible because the rainfall (monsoon time!) had created a thick, slick mud pool right at the pier entrance. Unfortunately I did not have a phone number of the Ao Kao resort: the agoda booking only mentioned their address. (Maybe a tip to have a contact number included on the booking confirmation. Or have the resort name and number listed at the pier?) Anyway, since this is a review of Ao Kao White Sand Beach Resort I don't want to spend too many words on the transportation troubles we had. We made it to the resort (by songtaew) after about 45 minutes. No biggie.
We arrived at the resort which seemed pretty deserted. We were greeted by a friendly lady at the main building, where also the restaurant is located. We were given the "Talay Dao 4" bungalow, which indeed was a beachfront bungalow, with a nice view. (Although our ocean view was a bit muddled because we had the Ao Kao golf cart parked right in front of our bungalow. Not a big deal to us though.) They were also building a new bungalow next to ours, about 15 meters away, but no disturbing sounds were made while we were there.
The interior of the bungalow was spacious. A large bed, with a mosquito net present overhead the bed. A (squicky) rotating fan on the ceiling above the bed and an arconditioning unit in one corner of the bungalow, luckily not blowing it's air over the bed. A tv and dvd player (they have a huge collection of dvd's available at the resort, although I wonder why one would want to watch dvds while staying at this beautiful place), a large wardrobe, desk, large fridge. A large veranda with table and 2 chairs. Nice, large, separate bathroom, with toilet, washbasin and shower with hot water. Plenty of lighting and ac wall outlets. Wifi present.

We rented a motorbike at the resort so we could explore the island. Due to the rain many dirt roads were inaccesible and we therefore could not visit many of the other beaches.
The resort has a nice layout with a nice beach, although it is not just sand. A lot of vulcanic rock too which is very visible during low tide. But there are plenty good swimming areas too. Unfortunately here also a lot of plastic that washes ashore on the beach. A global problem :-(

The overall impression of the resort is very good. It was quiet and romantic. I do fear though that during high season it can be pretty noisy in front of the ocean view bungalows as they have a trampoline set up for kids as well as a beach volleyball court. The beach I found a bit disappointing, not only because of the rocks, but also because it was not clean, but that is probably due to the low season and the fact that it rained a lot as well, so nobody bothered to look after the beach. Guests that visit during high season (Nov - Feb) can give feedback about the cleanliness of the beaches then.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank rob_leuftink
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Beverley
Level Contributor
29 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 July 2012

We booked through asia rooms and got an amazingly good deal. We arrived on Koh Mak and Sai picked us up from the pier. The resort is gorgeous, the rooms are amazing all with sea views, its a peaceful, beautiful place. We extended our stay from 3 to 10 nights as soon as we arrived!!! The endless supply of DVDs to watch was an added bonus!
The family that own the place are all so lovely and breakfast and dinner was always great too.
Thank you for having us we will never forget our stay :)
Jane and Paul

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank BeverleyCupcake
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
48 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 April 2012

We stayed in a ayutaya hut in the resort. It really was excellent. The room was well maintained and cleaned. It was really spacious. The staff is really friendly and they offer tons of free activities such as mountain bikes, snorkeling gear and when there not broken canoes. The food is mediocre but you can always choose to take one of the bikes and go out dining( we really recommend seafood barbecue.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank MickBrNL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ao Kao White Sand Beach Resort

Property: Ao Kao White Sand Beach Resort
Address: 60/1 Moo 1 Sudhidhanakul Road, Ko Mak 23120, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Trat Province > Ko Mak
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Ko Mak
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Ao Kao White Sand Beach Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 25
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Also Known As:
Ao Kao Hotel Koh Mak

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