New hotel in Krabi

Nov 18th, 2006, 11:02 AM
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New hotel in Krabi

I am new to this forum and I have to say: I love it!! After spending the last 2 weeks reading every single thread about Thailand, I have just a few more questions:

1. After much debate, we decided on the Phuket/Krabi area (rather than Koh Samui), but is it me or are the hotels on Koh Samui much better looking? Many of the 5 star hotels on Phuket are either very remote or looks like housing projects/condos.

2. Does anyone have any comments on the new Sofitel that just open in Krabi?

3. How far is Khlong Muang beach to Ao Nang or Krabi town if I want to go there for dinner/night markets?
azhou43090 is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 06:45 AM
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You need to considor time of year, as a ball park guide May to october Koh Samui and Gulf side Koh Tao/Koh Chang/ Gulf coasts / Sunrise Coast, November to April Phuket/krabi/Khao Lak/Koh Lanta area

Samui benefots from a lot of places 'right on the beach', unfortuately in busy beach areas on Phuket like Patong and Karon you have the beach road, also much of kata has beach road, though you 'can' find nice places such as Le Meridien that although large with quite a few floors benefits from being in it's own cove with a great beach but you are just 5 minuted from Patong.
Kata Thani another nice Phuket resort, there are also nice places on the beach at Kamala and then north around Surin/Bangtao.
Le Meridien ( the other ) at Nai Yang beach is nice, that is south of Kata.
So you don't have to be remote to find some nice places but i agree as said about absolute beach on Samui.

The deciding factor really is going to be the time of year you plan to visit.

Krabi Town itself is simply a provincial town, worth a visit if you are interested in getting away from the beach just to wander a local town but don't expect more than a local provincial town. You would find local market in krabi Town but this is mainly food, don't expect to find much in the way of souvenirs, arts/crafts, for that you would shops from what is around Ao Nang really.

Phuket is far better for shopping and that is right up to large malls.

Krabi is more for the scenery, best beaches often entail a boat ride.

Ao Nang is fairly crowded, hotels and other accommodation, restaurants, bars etc, Can't help on new Sofitel in Krabi but Sofitels in Thailand are good.

Again, time of year is going to be the deciding factor unless weather doesn't worry you.
Hope that helps as a starter.
tell us also how you like to spend your days and how much time you might stay in your hotel/resort and how much time you would spend on tours/trips.

Time of year I cannot emphasise enough will be important to head further towards decissions.

JamesA is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 06:58 AM
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For Phuket i would ass Thavorm Beach Village at Nakalay, this is is the USD 240-300 range ( eclduding Christmas and new year when higher, the Pool Villas or Poolside villas might suite, it is on the hillside down to great beach, superb views, it is also very convenient for Patong for restaurants, shopping including night market and street stalls and entertainment. Chapest are Ocean View in the USD 160 range.

If you want a tropical style resort with spa and are conentent with perhaps 10-15 mins maximum right into Patong then Thavorn beach could well appeal to you, very nice indeed, also heading into Patong you pass some of the best restaurants, there are cliffs between there and Patong and seafood places on the clifftops with great views at night across Patong.
JamesA is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 06:59 AM
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What a typo !...I meant 'add' !!
JamesA is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 07:02 AM
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Thavorn is between Patong and Kamala I should have added.
Also note it is only about 3 hrs from there to Krabi by road so you can always do both if you have sufficient time. Around krabi take a look at the Nakhamanda also.
JamesA is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 08:15 AM
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JamesA, thank you for your advice! At one point I was worry that no one will reponse to me since I am new and everyone seems to know everyone else on this posting

We will be flying from JFK to BKK on 12/13. We (my husband and I) both have been to Thailand a few years ago, so sightseeing in Thailand won't be on our agenda. We also can't take that much time off and would only be in the area for 9 days (excluding flying time). We are doing the "typical" BKK-Siem Reap-Southern Thailand route. I know it's tight but SR is a must, and a week in BKK seems excessive. So we want some beach and sun. We also looove Thai cuisine so I picture we'll be doing eat/relax/eat/snorkel/eat/shop/eat on this trip. I've read Hua Hin is famed for seafood and it's close to BKK but too bad the water is not as nice.

I have read many of your postings here and agree that we would avoid Samui this time of the year. My only reservation on Phuket is that it seems so big that it doesn't have the "beach town" feel. Le Meridien Beach Resort looks like a nice hotel but feels too big and too family oriented, we'll probably save that for future visits when we have kids. The other Le Meridien looks more "Thai" which is what we are looking for, but read some mixed review on TripAdvicor (dated, far). Hehe..., by now you probably think I am really fuzzy but I am not really, just want to find a balance between seclusion and easy access to local food/entertainment. I will look into Thavorn as you had suggested.

I then stumbled onto Sofitel in Krabi which I think opened on 11/15/06. It's on Khlong Muang beach which I assume it's in the same area as Nakamanda. It's a beach front resort and they have amazing promotionnal rates. When you say best beaches entail a boatride, does that mean KM beach is not desirable? We probably just plan to relax in the resort during the daytime, maybe one to two snorkle trips to the outter islands, and dinner in local restaurants/food stalls. Since we plan to visit the night and weekend markets in BKK, I think we are okay skipping shopping down south.

Alright, I bored you with enough details, Thanks again for your time and help.
azhou43090 is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 09:34 AM
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Found Sofitel on the map, it's actually right next to Sheraton.
azhou43090 is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 11:43 AM
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If you are flying 12/13 can you tell us which dates you are thinking of beach time ?
I cannot emphasise enough that from around 20th dec thru 10th jan is the 'absolute peak' travel time, that applies whether hotels of flights.
I think you really need to work 'fast' on this and really try and get everything settled within the next couple of days.
If you are doing Angkor ( Siem Reap ) please tell us you have flights and hotels already booked ! If not that needs to be done like first thing 'tomorrow' morning!

Now, for beach, accommodation, you need to appreciate that it might not be which place you decide to stay but more about 'what you can get'.
I very much doubt you could get either of Le'Meridiens on Phuket at this late stage.

Krabi area is more relaxed in a way than Phuket but it all comes down to where you are, 'if' you were lucky enough to get Thavorn then I honestly don't think you would be dissapointed, it's on a hillside down to the beach, lovely views, and quite easy to get into the hectic and lively throng of Patong. For any day trips it does not matter where you are as they pick-up and return to from/to your hotel or resort.
You simply have a far greater choice of activities, restaurants and shopping on Phuket, and also considor that there are also so many more flights from Bangkok to and from Phuket than krabi.

'If' Sofitel Krabi had rooms available then based purely on Sofitel standards you should be ok. If you are looking at just around 17th-20th December then you might be ok for Phuket before the masses arrive from around 20th for their 2 weeks over Christmas / New Year.

I think you will have to be very flexible on accommodation and be prepared to accept whatever 'is' available, on Phuket the sheer numbers of hotels and resorts probably gives you a better chance than Krabi.

Here is what I think is a good tip!-

If yuo book flight seats BKK-Phuket and return you then are OK for flights if you settle on Phuket, now, if nothing comes up that you are happy with but something comes up for krabi it is onbly about 2 hrs 30 by road from Phuket Airport to Krabi.
If you are flying with Thai already give them a call to see how much to add on BKK-Phuket rteurns to the tickets you already have, although there are budget carriers you may well find that Thai can add on that sector for a reasonable amount, at least that is a quick and easy fix.
When you head back unless you want to overnight in Bangkok Thai can book you and baggage straight from Phuket back to JFK and issue boarding cards at Phuket etc. You can also spend a little extra for Business class on those domestics.
Krabi flights, although Thai fly as well as others simply does not have as many flights, so I think you need to get those flight seats booked and by booking to Phuket gives you flexibility and no doubt better/more suitable flight times.

Now, next, Hua Hin, you are right, the beach is no tropical paradise like Samui or Phuket, but, you are now talking a cab or limo ride hotel in Bangkok to hotel/resort in Hua hin about 2 hrs 30 mins. So that cancels any domestic flight costs/issues.
You will not have the gorgeous tropical beaches but you do have some 'very fine' resorts such as the Hyatt Regency, Sofitel, Anantara etc. You have the seafood and excellent French, Italian, japanese restaurants, night markets, bars, elephants, golf, national parks.
Don't considor it if you want swaying palms like the Thavorn or krabi style scenery, but for R&R, food, sports, spas etc then that 'cab/limo ride' to and from BKK is something to keep in mind.

A place I forget and I know others will come in and mention ( so I'll get in quick ) is Mom tris' at kata beach, now, using Rates-To-Go ( a site where you can only book for days within 20 days - so currently only good for check 'out' by 10th December, Mom tri's is one of the few good Phuket place still showing availability, so there is a chance that they might have accommodation the following week/10 days, that is a maybe ), so it might be worth a try.
Around krabi area the central krabi Bay resort ( USD 200 range ) is about the only 'top' place showing availability.
I would not for a moment suggest waiting any more but that does give a guidline.
Look at a couple on Phuket to see what you think from the photos.


Kata Thani is also an option, you might be lucky as they have a lot of rooms.
I had a look at Sofitel and they show availability 16-20 dec at krabi.

JamesA is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 11:50 AM
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When you call Thai ask them to look at both Phuket and krabi flights, i don't know what they are like in the US but overall I have always found them very flexible, get on the phone and speak to someone and they will tell you how flights look for both Phuket and krabi, if you are yet to make a final decision talk sweet and they ask them to hold some seats for you for a few days whilst you sort out accommodation, I am sure they will.
The Sofitel Krabi rate of THB 5,400 seems good, but that no doubt is plus 17% tax and service and breakfast.
JamesA is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 12:34 PM
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I have noticed the rate difference pre/post December 19 and therefore decided to go to the beach first. We seem incapable of planning ahead

We were able to find good prices on AA/JAL from JFK to BKK for $975, although it's going to be a long trek (24 hours including layover). Too late to book Thai nonstop unless I am willing to pay $1500 per ticket, and to think, I wanted to use mileage for business class, the lady agent laughed at me.

We are able to book (just now) BKK to SR on Bangkok Air directly on their website, not the best rate but at least confirmed flight/seats. We also booked FCC Angkor as it was recommended by friends who stayed there last year.

Now I just need to nail down the beach and Bangkok part of this vacation. And yea, the one night near the new airport before flying down south (since we are arriving on the 14th late). I can't believe Novotel is the only choice and it is very expensive for a few hour stay. I read about the dayroom in the new airport, not much cheaper either.
azhou43090 is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 01:29 PM
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I'm currently doing the same research you are (but for next year) and the beach decision is definitely the hardest part. I'm currently researching Mom Tri's Villa Royale which *may* suit your criteria. Granted, I haven't been there but from what I've been reading it might be worth exploring.
PegS is offline  
Nov 19th, 2006, 01:30 PM
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ETA: Mom Tri's is in Phuket, which I should have specified in the post above!
PegS is offline  
Nov 21st, 2006, 07:05 PM
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Try the Nakamanda in Krabi.... On the same beach as Sheraton and Sofitel only much smaller.....
InnovAsian is offline  
Dec 13th, 2006, 08:49 AM
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I am booked into the Sofitel in Krabi from Dec 24th to 31st.

I have read worrying reviews about the construction still going on and I'm wondering if anyone has been there yet?
sbergin is offline  
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