We were 2 families travelling in Krabi - my wife and I and our friends (husband, wife and two small kids). We had certain criteria regarding the hotels we stayed in and I found all the answers at TripAdvisor. Before coming to Sheraton we stayed at Rayavadee and Centara Grand. I must say all the hotels met our expectations. The main thing about Sheraton is that the staff is able to quickly respond to requests and immediately address minor flaws.
As for the hotel itself it is mostly vast flat grounds, quite lush, landscaped but with a clear environmental approach - some parts are left for the wildlife while you walk through via elevated walkways. Very convenient and picturesque. Birds are everywhere, some distant lizards (water monitors?), there's even a mangrove area. The hotel has two pools, both very nice. The main one is extremely large, with an in-water bar. Cozy shaded stalls for two by one side of the pool. Many people prefer the lawn mowed grounds in between the pool and the beach. A few hammocks there. The small pool is a bit more quiet, though intended more for children and fun&games. It has unobstructed sea view and is right by one of the restaurants and the bar. Sun beds are comfortable, with mattresses, some at the beach are plastic. There is a children playground and a kid's club that our friends’ kids found very enjoyable. The beach is generally good, picturesque, though might have been better - slightly rocky at low tides. For sure it is no comparison with Railay. But it is Okay, trust me.
Food. The hotel has several restaurants, two of them serve breakfast. Quality and variety of the food is good. Kids will enjoy Sheraton's famous animal-shaped pancakes. The evening buffet is $30 per person (excl drinks). Wine is on the expensive side, but it's bearable holiday money. For heavy drinkers there's All-U-Can-Drink Menu - another $30 per person. We had a complimentary dinner for 6. Nice touch. We thought of having dinner once at the hotel Thai Restaurant but it seemed slightly formal and quiet. Unlike the other seaside restaurant where live music is on.
The Club Lounge: Coke was served in a can the first day we arrived so we did not expect much from the start and did not use the privileges at all. Might have been our loss...
Outside the hotel. There are several food places next to the hotel. We liked the one right across the street and up the stairs. It has a small souvenir shop as well. Reasonable prices and no complaints to the service or food. Next door is a good gift shop (they don't bargain there though, strange for Thailand). Of course there's a Seven-Eleven right next door to the Sheraton main gates, 2 ATMs, several excursion stands. 20 meters down the road there's a small Mall with gift shops, art galleries, massage places and small bars/restaurants. The restaurant that looks the nicest (first one on the right side) is the worst one. Small, cozy interior, nicely dressed and very pleasant waitresses and... awfully long waits, bad drinks and basically bad food. We actually left halfway through the meal and went to the first place across Sheraton. There are also a few more insignificant shops further down the road. Apart from that there is absolutely nothing else. One needs to go to Aonang or Crabi Town for late night action, variety of dining or sort of serious shopping. Costs 200 Bt per person both ways with Sheraton van. There is a small non-Sheraton food joint at the beach as well. Okay. Bare feet and swimsuits welcome.
Rooms. We occupied one of the few Suites. Ours might have been the best one in the house (#182) for it's located not far from the main pool, is right by a beautiful pond, has enormous fenced outdoor space, partial sea view (from the ground floor!) and is generally very bright inside. We even had an outdoor entrance that we used for shortcuts to the pool. The Suite is smartly planed out, has a huge sliding door that divides the sleeping area from the living area. 2 flat screen TVs, DVD players, Saeco coffee tea-making unit. Some nice decor. Always ice in the bucket. Two bathrooms. The main one is quite spacious, has 2 windows by the bathtub (no jets and no hand held shower), shower, big single sink wash-stand, American style toilet is in a small stall with a glass door. Plenty towels, toiletries, etc. Ample storage room. Even an ironing board and an iron inside the closet. Regular sized desk with internet cable. Generally all rooms (we've also been to their regular one) are not tired, well laid out, have balconies, a small sitting area, good coffee-tea making facilities. Just one comment - it would not hurt to have a hand-held shower in addition to the wall mounted one. That applies to the Suits as well. Also, the ground floor suite vast outside space while being a great addition to the room could be utilized / decorated more wisely.
Activities. All the regular excursions are available at Sheraton and at outside stalls. We went to Hong islands and to the 1-hour elephant ride. The hotel quotes baby elephant show - there was none. A shame because it's quite fun watching elephants play football and basketball, give backrubs... Nevertheless it was thoroughly enjoyable - with feeding the elephants and watching them shower in the river. Hotel price is only a tad higher than the outdoor price and it's just 12 minutes from the hotel in a van! We booked Hong Island outside the hotel because the hotel offered trips that started from a nearby beach and it takes a couple of hours to just get started with all the transfers and tourists gathering together. Ours was a relatively cheap and completely private long tail boat excursion starting right from the Sheraton beachside. Convenient, flexible. Takes 20-30 min to get to the islands. Very picturesque, nice mangrove lagoon, good beaches and snorkeling (actually no need in snorkeling - the fish is right there when you walk into the water).
Oh, just FYI - the in-house baby elephant Ra Ra (as read and seen at TripAdvisor) is no longer a baby and had to be dismissed from the Sheraton grounds. Oh well....
Service and staff. As stated above we valued the ability of the staff to generally make people happy. Girls at the Reception were nice and spoke enough English, there's Western staff on hand just in case. If there's something wrong (say, an unfortunate leak in the room) - they'll fix it straight away. If there's been a misunderstanding or a hiccup on their part - they will offer you something that will make you forget the mischief and set you off on the right track again. Basically the hotel respects the fact that you're on your long awaited holiday and tries to make it smooth and memorable.
Special thanks to Michael who made a hectic arrival day a lot less stressful for all of us and the in-house doctor that treated our friends’ 8-year old daughter after she had a small accident. The prompt and well organized actions by the hotel staff and the quality of the treatment were greatly appreciated.
All in all Sheraton is a great hotel run by professional staff, it has good location, well thought out grounds and facilities. We stayed at other good hotels in Krabi and the Sheraton did not let us down.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Enviably located on a peaceful, white sandy beach, our rooms feature every comfort to ensure a blissful stay. With a full range of activities and excursions we are the ideal choice for families and couples alike. Be as active or as relaxed as you like - try kayaking, rock climbing, diving, snorkeling, the heavenly Mandara Spa or lazing in a hammock by the Andaman Sea. Fabulous dining, live entertainment and warm hospitality await. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sheraton Krabi Beach Hotel Nong Thale
- Krabi Sheraton
- Sheraton Krabi Beach Resort Thailand