We booked in for a “babymoon” in April 2013 to have a relaxing last get away. It was far from relaxing with the resort failing to mention they would be doing major renovations in the room next to ours complete with duelling sledgehammers shaking the walls and floor during the day. We were not told about the work upon arrival / check in and it was this total lack of upfront communication and acknowledgement that this work was to be carried out every day during our entire 6 day stay between the hours of 9:00 am to 5:00 pm that ruined an otherwise pleasant stay.
It was very hot outside during our stay and being 6 months pregnant, I liked to go for a swim until midday then retreat to the room and air conditioning to get some respite from the heat (most guests seemed to do this), take a nap and then head back to the pool or beach late afternoon when it cooled down. Ordinarily on trips I would be out sightseeing or doing tourist stuff all day but the purpose of the trip was to rest, sleep and relax. No such luck with any of that unfortunately, with the reno work continuing every day.
The offer to move us after we felt compelled to complain came too late (they were booked out anyway). There was no offer or alternatives to get us away from the noise and out of the heat in the middle of the day when we couldn’t use our room and it was way too hot for me to be outside even in the pool where I would have burnt to a crisp.
It wouldn’t have taken much effort (or cost) on their behalf to appease a hot, tired, cranky pregnant woman however it wasn’t until I wasted nearly 2 hours of my holiday in a hot reception area on two separate days trying to find out when the work would be finished that I lost it and pretty much had to beg for them to find somewhere for me out of the heat and away from the noise during the day so I could rest and just read a book.
It was left to me to suggest giving us access to the Club Lounge in the air conditioning until work had finished for the day (only offered for one day). No other form of compensation, room discount or room upgrades was offered by the resort. Flabbergasted by their lack of thoughtfulness and inability to suggest anything, I pretty much had to insist they book us into the spa to make up for not being able to use our room for nearly 8 hours a day - surprisingly they booked us both in for treatments (30 mins + 45 mins) – not much compensation considering the amount we paid for the room.
It did take us a couple of days to complain, mainly because we usually are pretty tolerant and accepting and kept thinking it would end soon. We understand routine maintenance needs to be carried out but this work was pretty major and the noise unrelenting during the day. I think the management team may have thought we were just after freebies. Ahh… wrong, we paid good money for a room that was pretty much uninhabitable for most of the day.
TIP for resort management team: Let your guests know upfront, explain at check in or put together a nice letter explaining what is happening and offer guests token gestures of compensation e.g. daily access to Club Lounge or maybe some drinks or restaurant vouchers (anything that will give them alternatives).
Great location with easy access to beach
A variety of pools – the adult pool is a great escape from the crowds / kids, floating tubes and waterfall is really good
Breakfast buffet had a great variety of foods and staff very obliging and friendly
Complementary drinking water in room (although I’m sure you pay for it somewhere in your room rate, just nice to have and not have to restock yourself)
Great resort with everything contained in one area (pool, beach, restaurant, bar, activities, spa)
Looked to have great activities for kids
Lack of communication from management / operations team
Cleaning and room service VERY inconsistent (maybe a daily checklist might help staff with consistency, it was so random)
Breakfast services inefficient and a bit clumsy (kept running out of basics like glasses and spoons)
Walking from resort to town – they could do with a safer alternative for pedestrians up the ramp from the resort and first couple of hundred meters on side of the road
Deck chairs usually all taken by 10:00 am so get in early
Not really to do with the resort but the beach has a lot of litter and rubbish washed up on the shore and although staff clean this up early in the morning, you still have to dodge floating rubbish when swimming in the ocean which is really disgusting (there was a lot when we were there).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket is a modern five-star luxury resort built directly on the foreshores of Karon Beach. Designed with distinct Phuket colonial Sino-Portuguese architecture, the luxury accommodation comprises of 262 guestrooms and villas. All guestrooms have a balcony and are ocean facing. Room types consist of spa suites, pool suites, deluxe suites and one and two bedroom villas. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket Hotel Karon
- Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket Karon