Just returned from a 2 night getaway trip to The Naka Island Resort and wanted to share a review of the place as my wife and I had a wonderful getaway to this secluded island resort.
The magic happens right when you get to Ao Por bay as you are whisked away by a well-maintained speedboat from the main island of Phuket to Naka Island. I unfortunately fractured my foot the night before my travels, but the staff provided thoughtful assistance right from the start. Upon exiting the boat, a staff had a sincere outreached arm for me to steady myself on. Upon entering the buggy at the jetty, a young Korean lady staff immediately offered to bring a crutch or walking stick over to my villa and made it very clear that there is a 24hr buggy service available so I will not need to walk to any destination if I choose not to.
Check in was seamlessly carried out in our villa and she gave my wife the grand tour around the room. Yes the restroom and shower area is "kooky" as some reviews have stated, but it was charming! The area is still within your villa, but it is located at the back and had a wonderful outdoorsy feel to it. You are after all on a secluded island, and this added to the natural charm of things. I had a broken foot, and it wasn't much inconvenience to go to the toilet in the night, just make sure to leave a light or two on.
The resort has 2 restaurants and 1 bar. The Grill and Tonsai restaurants serve amazing food. Yes it is a little pricey, but it is on par, or even slightly cheaper than most 5 star luxury resorts. I think people feel that it is pricier than it really is because there isn't much choice but to eat at either restaurant. If you feel that this will be the case for you, then I suggest you don't stay on a small island resort, and stay on main island of Phuket instead where you can have your pick of high-end all the way to street food. The surf and turf and rib eye steak was amazing at The Grill! The cocktails were delicious too! Tonsai had unique and authentic Thai dishes, but I do believe the servings could be a little heartier (especially the morning glory vegetable dish). But that did not take away from the great flavours. The mango sticky rice was one of the best I've ever had. The breakfast spread was surprisingly varied too...with a thai noodle station, and even cava was provided that made for many happy mimosa cocktails (Drinking in the morning is not the norm, but come on, you're on vacation).
We stayed in a sea-view pool villa and it was incredibly spacious for 2 people. It was well maintained and the view was breathtaking. The pool is small, more for dipping and relaxing in. The main infinity pool would be the one to go for if you want to have a good swim in.
One constructive comment I would like to give the hotel is regarding the housekeeping schedule. After our first night stay, we were in and out of our room a couple of times after breakfast and noticed that the room was not made up. At 3pm, I called front desk and queried why the room was still unmade. Two local Thai front desk staff told me that this is due to an eco-green initiative. I travel a fair bit, and I understand that most hotels do want to cut down energy consumption and do their part for the earth, which I am in total agreement with.
Most of these initiatives involve hanging the towels up on a rack if you are willing to reuse them, or place a card on your bed to make known you do not need your linens changed. But I have never come across a hotel that requires you to inform them if you just want your bed made, trash cleared, bottle water topped up, and floor swept (especially being a beach resort, there would definitely be some amount of sand on the floor). The villa pool was not cleaned either, leading there to be an accumulation of leaves by the 2nd day.
I don't believe that simple actions of making up a room would be any less eco-friendly. And, if this is the standard practice of Naka, then it would be helpful to inform guests at check-in that standard housekeeping procedures will not be carried out unless specific instructions are given to do so.
Besides that, everything else was great. Staff were always attentive, friendly and professional right from the recreation pool staff, the restaurant staff and even the managers.
Final verdict, will I be heading back to The Naka Island resort again in the future? Most definitely so! Maybe even with my young child as it turned out actually to be a very family friendly resort!
Keep up the good work!