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“Disappointing Standards & Service” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Koh Phangan Starlight Bungalows

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Koh Phangan Starlight Bungalows
6/4 Moo 5 | Thong Nai Pan Yai Beach, Ko Phangan 84280, Thailand   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #61 of 91 hotels in Ko Phangan
Jersey, UK
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Disappointing Standards & Service”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2013

To start with the positives the beach is very nice, although it does have several stray dogs so not for anyone who is uneasy around dogs. The pool is also very nice, large enough to swim lengths and with a lovely view out to sea. The rooms are big and airy and clean. Unfortunately that is where the positives stop.

We had emailed to book a transfer from the harbour to the hotel and as another reviewer has mentioned they failed to turn up. Luckily we managed to get on the taxi that was coming to this beach but it cost 300baht each rather than the 200baht had the hotel arranged the transfer as promised. We did book the return transfer and the resort taxi is a pick-up truck with seats in the back so if you arrive in the rain prepare to get wet.

On our arrival at the resort there was no apology for the fact that the transfer had not been arranged and there are significant language difficulties at the hotel. The staff are mainly Burmese so google translate is no help and the staff definitely did not go to the land of smiles school for customer service! We had booked a fan room and the disappointment just kept coming. The room whilst very large contained nothing but a bed, one bedside table and a fan. There is not a single, hook, shelf or rail to put anything so if you book this room expect to live out of your case or off of the floor. The air con rooms seem to have fully fitted wardrobes, desks, tv’s and even tables and chairs on the balcony. The fan rooms also have the most used pillows and bed sheets available, all well worm with mis-matched patterns.

You will be required to pay a key deposit of 500baht on check-in and they will try anything to keep this, bedding will be check for marks so be careful if you plan to go to the full moon as getting the glow paint on the sheets will definitely cost you.

The fan rooms are also sold as ‘sea view’ which is a little extravagant. Depending on where your room is you are going to be looking across up to 10 other balconies to see a snippet of the sea. The balconies are not very private with only a 2 foot high fence separating you from your neighbours.

The pool is lovely but unfortunately it is not nearly suitable for the number of guests staying at the hotel, out of season it is perfect and you will have the whole pool to yourself, however at peak season you will head to the pool at 8:00am and find all the sunbeds already reserved only for them to sit empty for the whole day. There are only 15 sun beds, 11 with mattresses and nothing on the beach at all. There are no toilets at the pool so you have to use your room, which is difficult when the cleaning team keep your room key all day! The hotel does not provide towels for use at the pool or on the beach.

The WIFI only works in the reception and around the pool, whilst it is free it is very slow and occasionally it seemed the router was turned off altogether.

Despite being a 45 minute journey from Thong Sala on very bad roads the hotel seems to attract large families with very young children who play and scream in the pool all day, it also attracts large groups of teenagers who want to sit around the pool drinking all evening waiting for the boats to the various parties in Haad Rin so it is definitely not a resort for anyone looking for peace and quiet.

To have your room cleaned you need to hand your key into reception (usually this is unattended and you need to find staff in the supermarket). Whether your room gets cleaned is luck. One day we handed our key in at 10am and after numerous attempts we got it back at 4.30pm and the room had been swept but no bedding changed.

The young team that clean and garden work incredibly hard keeping the resort looking nice, but the management staff are very disappointing at this resort and customer service is at the very bottom of their priorities.

I would not recommend this hotel at all as there are many other better hotels to choose from which are better value.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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42 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Calgary
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2012

We stayed at Starlight for four nights. The bungalows are dingy and musty but the rooms in the main building are quite nice. Also the pool is lovely. However, we found the staff to be unfriendly. First, they failed to pick us up in Thong Sala, we are a family of four, with two young children so waiting in front of the 7-11 for a taxi to appear was frustrating. We had no real explanation when we arrived as to why it did not come. Second, we discovered we were paying double the going rate. We paid 3000 bhat when others were paying 1500 baht. On top of this we had to bargain hard to get an extra bed in the room. She wanted to charge us 3400 for room with no breakfast. Third, as mentioned, there is no breakfast included and no restaurant. Breakfast is not cheap on the beach so you have to add about 600 baht for a family of four, making this by far, our most expensive place in Thailand in 5 weeks and we are not budget travellers. Finally, the cleaners take the key when they need to clean your room. We needed to get back in our room and could not find them. My husband discovered them making out on the bed, the cleaner had his pants undone. The lights were out and the curtains drawn so it was black inside. We reported them to Dah, the unfriendly 20 year old something who seems to be in charge of the entire complex, however she said they denied it and then she accused my husband of lying. Unbelievable, why would we make this up? To top it all off, when we moved on to the next resort, we discovered my brand new Iphone was missing. This is the first review I have ever written on tripadvisor but felt motivated to do so after the terrible service, expensive price and dishonest staff. For the rest of our holiday we encountered lovely people and stayed in lovely places.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Everywhere, USA
Top Contributor
62 reviews 62 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 40 cities Reviews in 40 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2012

We stayed in three different type rooms here over a five day period. There are individual bungalows which appeared older and a newer motel style block of rooms which had fan only and aircon rooms. We first stayed in a bungalow for 1200 baht/night. My only complaint is that the mattress smelled very moldy, otherwise the room was ok. We moved to a fan room in the motel block and the room was newer, clean, with a much better mattress and a good value room for 600 baht. Our final night we moved to a seaview, aircon room in the motel block for 1300 baht and it was like the fan room but with aircon, fridge, tv, good mattress. It was quiet here and the reception girl was very friendly and spoke good English. The pool is great and is right by the beach. Best pool on the entire beach. Wifi worked ok. They do not have a restaurant. We tried some of the beach restaurants which were overpriced and not very good and finally tried a place on the main road in town that was packed with people on a corner with a sign reading "Thai Food". It was the best food we had there and we went back several times.

Room Tip: Motel units are newer with better mattresses.
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, OR
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2012

OK. First the good. Fantastic pool with views! Nice stretch of beach. Quiet location. And although it is a small thing I love the fact that there is an electric kettle with coffee cups in the room.

The bad: windows do not open! Moldy smelling rooms. Mattress stinks bad. No bedside lamps! Poor lighting - only one dim ceiling light.

No maid service.

Another thing: count your change when you make a purchase at the property's adjacent Starlight mini-mart. The older woman quickly coughed up the 10 baht when I asked about it. . It wasn't much but if a person is dishonest, a person is dishonest.

Stayed May 2012, traveled solo
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
london
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2012 via mobile

We were staying in the Havana resort just down the beach from star light but enquired about a room due to star light being the best looking resort with the nicest pool on the beach. We stayed here 2 nights for 1,300 baht/night in a seaview 1st floor hotel room, saving us the equivalent of 800 baht a night had we stayed on at Havana.
This is a difficult resort to review- the rooms are nice, pool excellent, views lovely...but there are little mistakes- the lightswitches are the other side of the room to the bed, there is no lighting from the beach to the room, no maid service (we only stayed 2 days)...It doesn't need to have a restaurant or bar as it has the best bar on the beach (flip flop bar) next door and there are plenty of restaurants along the beach.
I should mention there was a cockroach in the bathroom that the girl at front desk had to kill for me- however they were also at the Havana and on the beach.

Considering value for money this resort is fantastic.

  • Stayed May 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
london
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2012

after careful deliberation where to stay when we arrived this beach we decided to stay at the starlight in march 2012. worst mistake of my trip and left a very sour taste in my mouth.the room never got cleaned, was grubby before we moved in, the guy on reception (wish i had gotten his name) was the rudest person ive ever met. was very unhelpful and anything i asked him was met with either a sneer or a brusk wave of the hand. obviously it is not his hotel and he only works there coz if it was im sure he would of been more friendly and accommodating. in the end my girlfriend and i moved next door ...... take a tip from me guys, give this place a wide berth.....

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ajijic, Mexico
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2012

We stayed here in Thong Nai Pan Yai 2 weeks ago and despite it being a nice place (all accommodation along the beach is nice so don't think this is on it's own), the staff and management couldn't have been worse. Bad tempered and surly, they didn't seem interested in wanting to help out in any way. Rooms were never cleaned. Any question was almost met in a threatening manner and appeared very confrontational. We checked out early and moved a few places which was much nicer in comparison.

Room Tip: Go elsewhere
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Koh Phangan Starlight Bungalows

Address: 6/4 Moo 5 | Thong Nai Pan Yai Beach, Ko Phangan 84280, Thailand
Location: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Ko Phangan
Amenities:
Free Parking Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #61 of 91 hotels in Ko Phangan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
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Also Known As:
Koh Phangan Starlight Bungalows Hotel Koh Phangan

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