For me, this one was a mixed bag. I know what it wants to be but it seems to be just slightly wide of the mark at present.
We took a villa overlooking one of the ponds - a lovely option - during the summer - but not such a great selection in October, where the evenings were a little cool, dark early, and one couldn't sit out on the bench to admire the view (a poor choice therefore)
As a result, the serious design flaw of this villa became immediately apparent; we chose to eat in on the one of the nights and had to sit with plates on laps on the wide (but unsuitable) couch area as there is no table/chair area inside the room. Perhaps I am being too critical here, but it was a genuine shortcoming for such an expensive room and a little disappointing (albeit not a 'deal breaker' as it were).
The hotel location is good - the internal common areas are extremely clean and beautifully designed, very functional, relaxing and supremely comfortable - a perfect place in which to conduct a business meeting too - we spent literally all day in the library area with a supplier and were only disturbed by the very professional staff as they refilled our water and brought little snacks.
Breakfasts were superb, really delicious and varied each morning, attention by the staff was incredible - they are extremely attentive and professional (note to management: perhaps a little too attentive!)
I was surprised at the standard of finish on some of the room fittings and in the spa; light switches were sitting proud from the wall as a result of having been poorly fitted, a tear was to be found on the curtain in front of the main entrance door, I noted tiles dislocated on the roof of a villa close to ours, light fixtures out of place in the spa, weeds lurking beneath the bridges and pathways, poor fitting wall tiles, splashes of render smearing the walls in places.
Again, these are absolutely not 'deal breakers' and won't dilute your enjoyment of the tranquility of the Banyan Tree, but the simple matter is that they are not flaws I'd expect to see in a 5 star property at this level of offering and do let the place down, if only slightly, and I'd prefer to see them addressed (for sure, these were not present in Banyan Tree's Phukett property and that is the standard I had expected here).
One final point to note; if you stay here, you must try a massage in the spa; Karen is small and slight but she gave me one of the most thorough massages I've ever had, extraordinary - to a point where I was actually lighted headed for 2 hours after with all the toxins she released in me, I've never experienced anything like it.
On balance, the setting and the staff make this a worth while resort to stay in - the rooms are large, the bathrooms and amenities excellent, the breakfast divine, and the common areas very comfortable and relaxing - while I'm critical of the finish seen on some areas, it's not sufficiently off putting and we would consider staying again when next in Hangzhou - from my discussion with Pascal, it is apparent that they are striving for the highest standards in the area and so I'd expect that most of the little flaws will be ironed out in due course. Thank you Banyan Tree.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Thank you very much for your constructive and thorough feedback about your stay with us. We are more than pleased to hear that in general your enjoyed our amenities and excellent services during your stay. We take your opinion serious and do thank you for your kind remarks about our service. Your compliments and comments are being shared with our staff. Our new chef, Jacky, will be certainly excited to know that you really enjoyed the breakfast.
Furthermore, I am sorry to hear that the décor for the villas and room fittings unfortunately were not up to your expectation, neither were the views. We do have various suite and villa types with different layouts and in different locations, so we could certainly find an accommodation that suits your needs on a next occasion.
I wish to apologize for the uneven level of overall facilities during your stay; this is not the usual standard that is synonymous with the Banyan Tree brand. We highly appreciate all your comments about the room fittings and other flaws you have brought to our attention. It is absolutely important that you let us know what we can do better and how we can continually improve the guest experience. Thank you again for your candid and valuable comments.
I do hope that we will have the pleasure of being service to you again. We will certainly make your stay more enjoyable and comfortable, so that your impression of our property will continue a positive growth path.
We all look forward to welcoming you in the near future, as we strive to make your “satisfactory experience” into a great one.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.