We had high expectations of this hotel as we had spent some time looking at different places to stay in Thailand to celebrate my 'special' birthday.
Having booked through Virgin Holidays, my husband then sent an email directly to the hotel to inform them that I was celebrating a significant birthday and to see what they could do to help make it special (as he had seen that in a number of reviews, people celebrating something special were given either a room upgrade or were treated very well).
He received an email from a manager to confim they would do their best to provide us with the best available room and a birthday cake.
However on arrival, it was quite apparant that the room (despite being nice) was not an upgrade on what had been booked anyway. My husband told me about the email that he had sent and I pointed out that possibly the hotel was at 100% capacity, hence us getting that room. However, during our stay it became clear that the hotel was not 100% full so that could not have been the case.
We also had to raise a couple of issues during out stay as follows:
The air-con in the gym was broken on a number of days (and never appeared fixed), the temperature controls were broken and fixed at 24.5/25, despite trying to turn the controls down to 18/19 they would go straight back up again.
I informed management of this problem on 3 occasions, they appeared to take on board what I said and told me they would sort it but not once did anyone come back to me with an update and it continued to not work. After the 3 attempts of getting it fixed (and getting no updates from management) we stopped using the gym (which was very frustrating as were wanting to train and it was too hot to do so).
After a few days also we noticed that the floor had not been swept in our room, once again I informed the management and they told me they would get that sorted. I am pleased to say that the room was cleaner after raising that.
On arrival we had met with our tour operator representative Yim who was very helpful and she knew it was my birthday, so she spoke to my husband and confirmed with him that she was also going to speak to the management about making my birthday special and arranged that a cake would be delivered to my room courtesy of the management at 6pm on my birthday.
We returned to the room at that time and firstly I noticed that despite the cards that I had opened that morning being dotted around my room, there was no sign of the hotel recognising it was my birthday. There was no petals on the bed, or towels in the shape of a swan and most importantly there was no cake. I felt an overwhelming feeling of disappointment - this was not the first time I have stayed at a resort hotel for my birthday and have always had lovely gestures from hotels and seeing that this was a special birthday I suppose I just expected more.
We then waited in the room for an hour to see if the cake would appear and nothing...
My husband was very angry by this point as he could tell I was upset and he rang down to reception. It was quite clear that no-one had sorted out the cake and it been forgotten. They then did make a cake and we got it a couple of hours later.
I know this might seem silly to make such a fuss about this, but I was of the impression that the hotel was going to make me feel special for my birthday.
We also discovered during our time that there was a meet the manager drinks reception - we weren't invited - were we not good enough or important enough to meet the manager?
So in conclusion the hotel was fine, the infinity pool was beautiful and the staff very pleasant but the management are at fault for not giving guests that 'something special' that my husband and I have experienced in other hotels around the world.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket is a modern five-star luxury resort built directly on the foreshores of Karon Beach. Designed with distinct Phuket colonial Sino-Portuguese architecture, the luxury accommodation comprises of 262 guestrooms and villas. All guestrooms have a balcony and are ocean facing. Room types consist of spa suites, pool suites, deluxe suites and one and two bedroom villas. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Orbitz, Hotels.com, Cheap Tickets, Booking.com, Travelocity, Priceline, Agoda, Fastbooking, Odigeo and Tingo so you can book your Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket Hotel Karon
- Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket Karon