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Reviewed February 13, 2013

Koh Samui, as ever, delivered everything it promised, but Rocky's was a huge disappointment from start to finish.

It is difficult to know where to start, but we had two principal complaints: the quality of the room and the quality of the service.

The Room:

We had booked a Deluxe Ocean View Junior Suite, so we were within our rights to expect a deluxe (no!) suite (no!) with an ocean view (WRONG!). The room (807) was standard size with standard furnishings, albeit with a large and comfortable bed.

We had requested a room high up on the hill (as recommended in previous tripadvisor reviews) but found ourselves were on the raised ground floor which meant that our ocean view comprised the back walls of two beachfront villas and a thin sliver of ocean (see photo). We had had visions of sitting on our balcony taking in the sunsets, but this was not to be.

On arriving, we immediately told the staff at reception that we were not happy with the room and would like to change. We were told that nothing could be done until the morning. We heard nothing more of this and, with limited time in Samui, decided to stick with our room (but it would have been nice if someone had followed up on our complaint).

The Service:

We travel to Thailand often and are always struck by the outstanding friendliness and high quality of Thai service. Rocky's must be the exception that proves the rule, because the standard of service was APPALLING.

The breakfast service was a prime example – it was shambolic and the owners and management should be embarrassed. Not once in the four times that we had breakfast were we provided with a full complement of cutlery, plates, menus, napkins etc.. It became a running joke between us to guess what would be missing before we arrived at the table.

The waiting staff themselves (with a few exceptions) were slow, very bad-mannered and clearly hacked off about something (maybe it is the cancellation of all of their days off, as mentioned by the hotel manager in response to an earlier complaint). Each morning we saw staff openly bickering amongst each other in the restaurant. This is not exactly "boutique" behaviour. What was more surprising is that each morning the hotel manager Martin was in the restaurant but took no action to sort out what was really quite obviously dismal service. One of the owners was also present on most mornings, but clearly took no interest in the chaos behind her.

Service elsewhere (at reception, the bar and the bistro restaurant) was also very slow, even where there were no other guests waiting.

Previous reviews have mentioned that the hotel was ill-equipped to deal with busy periods, but surely the level of business at Christmas, new year and Chinese new year should not come as a surprise to the management?! You can't expect guests to forgo a relaxing experience, just because the hotel is near capacity.

Overall, the resort just is not a boutique resort. It has none of the charm or personal service of a true boutique hotel, perhaps because it has too many rooms for the size of the common facilities such as restaurants and beach space, perhaps because the owners and management have become lazy and complacent given its previous success or are too focussed on the lucrative wedding market to ensure that all guests experience a high level of service.

Amusingly, the brochure in the room states the following:

Rocky's is not a five star resort or a four star resort. We don't offer the level of service we offer in stars. We are a family. And, we consider all of our guests as part of our family.

They are right, Rocky's is a three star resort let down by one star service. We were pleased to leave Rocky's and its dysfunctional "family" behind.

A full list of issues (by way of "constructive feedback") relating to our stay:

- Airport pick-up was late and we had to ask another driver to contact the hotel to find out where our driver was.

- Room was not as described – "deluxe" and "junior suite" are subjective terms I guess, but "ocean view" implies a lot more than what we received.

- Unavailability of staff to deal with complaints on arrival.

- Insufficient seating room at breakfast (due to slow turnaround of vacated tables).

- Bickering and surly waiting staff at breakfast, in spite of the owner and hotel manager being present.

- Breakfast items served incomplete (e.g. poached eggs on toast, without the toast).

- The usable beach space is tiny, with room for a maximum of 8 – 10 people.

- There were a lot of children – not a problem in itself, but Rocky's feels more like a Club Med kids club than a boutique hotel, which is not how it markets itself.

- VERY slow service in the bar and the bistro restaurant.

- Not once during our 4 day stay did anyone ask if we were enjoying our stay or if we were ok. The Rocky's "family" is clearly not one for talking.

Others obviously find something to love about Rocky's, but we couldn't see it - maybe blood is thicker than water as we were clearly not welcome in the Rocky's family.

Date of stay: February 2013
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank MattN_sgsg
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Rockys, General Manager at Rocky's Boutique Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2013

I am sorry that you were disappointed with your holiday. I am very concerned about your comments and kindly ask you to contact me to discuss further. We really and truly want our guests to be happy and it saddened me to read your review. Thank you.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 11, 2013

We were very well looked after at Rockys. Our suite (one of the 900's) was excellent, and the whole resort beautifully kept by fastiduous staff. The two restaraunts were high quality and didn't disappoint. Staff generally excellent; Martin, the manager, was particularly attentive although the bar staff could have been a little more cheerful. Expensive by Thai standards but worth it for a high quality experience.

Date of stay: February 2013
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Thank misspjmartin
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Rockys, General Manager at Rocky's Boutique Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2013

Thank you, We use the best imported ingredients, which we believe for the quality, offers good value for money.

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Reviewed February 10, 2013

My wife and I have spent several holidays in Thailand over the last couple years and have never been disappointed ,the people the food and scenery have always been great . for this trip we were looking for something different and Rocky's ticked all the boxes , food / staff / setting / accommodation second to none . The management and staff were very attentive at all times and nothing was to much trouble .
We would like to offer Cherry in the dining room and Poly in the bistro our many thanks for going that extra mile .
We would also like to say many thanks to Martin, Mira and Julian for making our stay a memorable one .

Room tip: all the rooms have there own attributes , for anyone with mobility problems i would suggest a poolside room .
Date of stay: January 2013
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
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1  Thank barry p
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Rockys, General Manager at Rocky's Boutique Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2013

Thank you Barry, I will pass on your thanks to everybody. Until next time.

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Reviewed February 10, 2013

We attended Rocky's with our two Daughters for our Son & Daughter-in -Law's(magical) wedding day.Although our wedding party was small,the manner,professionalism and personal attention to detail that the 'Rocky Team' paid to our wedding party was fantastic.Making us all feel very special from the build up to the the wedding ceremony it's self to the very last dance of the evening.
Even pre & post wedding the whole expeirence was great,waking up to friendly staff who always acknowledged you with a smile and good morning to the last thing at night,really polite and friendly.
As a middle aged couple we were a little apprehensive about going to Thailand.However our trip to Koh Sumai in general and Rocky's in particular has certainly changed our mind and views. In fact we haven't stopped telling our friends that they must put this on their places to visit.

Room tip: For a family the villa options was perfect.
Date of stay: January 2013
  • Trip type: Traveled with family
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1  Thank kevin b
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Rockys, General Manager at Rocky's Boutique Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2013

Hi Debbie and Kevin, Thank you so much. It was great to have you here. Being part of a wedding group always improves a holiday. Try coming on your own next time, you will still enjoy it as much, I promise.

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Reviewed February 7, 2013

I would give this place more than 5 stars if they were available.
I recently stayed here with my wife and two adult daughters, one with her boyfriend.
So we stayed in the two bedroom suite with little plunge pool.
After five nights there was nothing to complain about.
The rooms were plenty big for the five of us. Very relaxing, clean and plenty big.
The two hotel pools were very inviting and the water temperature was perfect. Our little plunge pool was much cooler, so it didn't get used by my family.
The pool bar and small restaurant had great food and the daily half price cocktails hour in the evening got a good workout. AUD $4.50 for a cocktail was good value.
The small restaurant prices were a bit high, but the food was great.
We also dined at a nearby, popular seafood restaurant which was a 500 metre walk down the road. The food here was amazing and very, very cheap.
Rocky's is a top place, with equally top staff. Every staff member is impressive and welcoming.
Finally, the breakfasts were incredible delicious ... You order off an extensive menu and then can top up, if you are still hungry, via an equally superb buffet.
So, yes I would return here and I would recommend this place to friends. But for me, I only need to visit Samui once in my life!

Room tip: Try get ground floor at pool.
Date of stay: January 2013
  • Trip type: Traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Service
1  Thank LFLLFL
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Rockys, General Manager at Rocky's Boutique Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2013

Thank you so much for visiting Rocky's and the beautiful Island of Koh Samui .
Yes 5 days is never enough, so much to see and do.

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