I have just returned from a wonderful week at the JW Marriott Khao Lak. After a week here we then went to the JW Marriott in Phuket for a couple of days before flying home.
This really isn't a 5 star hotel like the JW Marriott Phuket which was grander in every way. It doesn't feel like a Marriott either. Although the hotel was refurbished some of the builds and the pool dates back to its Sofitel Magic Lagoon days. As other reviewers have noted in the pool whole tiles are missing in places and although the easily accessible areas have been repainted other areas look very tired as shown in the pictures.
The room itself was very nice. The furniture a little dated and I always found it very dark in the room even with all of the lights on. We booked a pool access room which although novel we didn't use much as it got very little sun. This seems the same for most of the rooms, very few get the sun on the lower level balcony’s so we went to the beach most days. I never had any problems getting a sunbed there.
The service from the hotel staff was impeccable and everyone was always welcoming. The location is near perfect if you want a quiet holiday. You can walk for miles in either direction along the beach. The downside is it is very quiet in the evenings. We tried a couple of the restaurants but much preferred eating in the places along the beach to the right. Andaman’s I found best followed Phen's then Blue Mist. The atmosphere of sitting with your feet in the sand watching the waves was amazing and the food (and price) great too.
I hadn't intended to use the Spa in the hotel but as they had a 50% off offer I did. That was a great experience. I also went on one of the bike tours from the hotel. Good quality bikes although they do need a good service.
Do check your bill carefully. There were errors on my bill as I hadn't received the Marriott Silver members discount on all of the food and drink. It took some convincing to show the receptionist it was wrong. Spoilt the holiday in a way.