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“Nice living in a garden but for a price...”

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Centara Villas Phuket
Ranked #31 of 132 Hotels in Karon
Certificate of Excellence
Moscow
Level Contributor
14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Nice living in a garden but for a price...”
Reviewed January 25, 2012

Overall, it is good hotel. The managment is a little bit "Thai", i.e. sometimes not careful enough, they may let you wait, forget something - with an excuse, of course - as they did to my taxi, but in general it is OK. Be aware you will be staying on a cliff - i.e. there is a really steep road and stairways. Even though they have a car for picking up a guest, get ready to climb :) It was fine to me, but for a senior or overweight people this might be a concern. Another disadvantage of any cliff is the obvious lack of a beach. But Centara Villas has realtive short walk (pathway) to a beach and it is common in this area to go to a beach by tuk-tuk, taxi or a shuttle bus.

The views are gorgeous. The rooms and the bathrooms are fine, every bungalow has a spacious balcony/terrace from where you can enjoy the sunset - another great option is to do the same is their nice upper bar, where they have a happy hour (2 for 1) exactly by the sunset time. Overall comfort, pleasant environment of leaving under the trees, in a garden made me very satisfied with both my stays at Centara Villas. At the same time, an assosiate of mine was staying in one of the most expensive villas at Centara Grand Karon, just hundreds of steps down from Centara Villas (Cliff) and even though his villa was really fancy (and more expensive, of course!), with a nice private infinity pool, I still liked Centara Villas better - there is more privacy, more environment and it is more a kind of boutique-style resort.

The one important thing - I slept well all nights without A/C on - due to Centara's Villas cliff loaction, the breeze from the sea was cooling the room just enough. It is a great benefit, in my opinon.

The both rooms I was sayin in had nice views. I returned there myself and would defenitely recommend this hotel for anyone, wishing to stay at Karon/Patong area, what is NOT the best location on the island in my opinion - but this point has nothing to do with the hotel. The hotel is good.

Room Tip: The views are great in most of the rooms, so think about up-and-down walks more rather than of a vie...
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank kat0k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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English first
Level Contributor
15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed January 25, 2012

My husband and I stayed here over Christams and New Year and had the best time. Fantastic location and views (which make the resort) and lovely pleasant staff. Yes the resort is hilly but I knew this before I came as I researched the resort first, it also adds to the ambience of the place. Two lovely pools not massive but it was busy and full while we were there and we still had no trouble getting sunbeds and towells.
Breakfast choice was excellent and fresh, the coffee from the machine was better than the jugs though. My husband loved the omellettes and egg station, best out of the three hotels we stayed in.
Food in the restaurant was really good, not the cheapest but not that expensive without tuk tuks and very well presented. Service and staf again excellent. New Years Eve was fantastic, spread was out of this world for choice and quality, lovely tasteful entertainment (unlike previous year/reviews). We also pre ordered our wine and got free bottle of Moet at 11.45pm for New Year. Effort from all staff couldn't be faulted.
The walk down to the beach is short and easy, and the beach is quiet and clean but busy further down. Kais restaurant and staff was cheap and food good. After visiting several times for lunch got free sunbeds in the afternoon. Joa was lovely and knew more about English football than you would believe, results, positions in league etc even about my husband's team "Middlesbrough".
Didn't use Spa at hotel but had fantastic massages at salon in Karon near "Red Onion" (which we didn't visit unfortunately) Ladies had pink t shirts on.
We walked up to Kata which was nice, both Kata and Karon are very busy and commercial but we then went back to our lovely secluded villa. We were also upgraded free of charge to a spa Villa after a few days, the staff are so eager to please. We would definately return here if we visited Phuket again. The location to tour island was really good and we did visit some much nicer beaches further up but they were much less accessable.
All in all you will not be dissappointed at Centara Villas, it is not a brand new 5* hotel but an established resort that is a haven amongst the more commercial areas of Patong and Karon.
Bangla Road in Patong is defiantely worth a visit if only to people watch, and shopping there is good but that is about it. The free shuttles from the hotel are good, we used them several times and making our own way back was not a problem. We considered hiring mopeds but after seeing several accidents decided against it and settled on tuk tuks.

Room Tip: Ask for private balcony as some were very over looked
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank herringfish
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed January 19, 2012

Arrived at centara villas absolutely knakard, we could barley even talk or think straight, The Staff at reception sorted us out straight away, took our bags ,Sat us down , gave us nice cold drinks cold towels etc... Quick check in and straight in the room , One of the guys demonstrated a few things in the rooms , where things were and stuff. We were quite demanding and were ringing up quite a bit during the stay and asking questions but they were spot on and really happy and cheerful to answer and sort anything.


The location is beautiful , The grounds are lovely , Has everything you need.

At the end of the day this is pure paradise. I cant see how it can get any better. Thanks centara

Nice staff , Great food , Lovely clean rooms , Really professional all round

Room Tip: Any room and you'll be gobsmacked.
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Nobody71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fremont, CA
Level Contributor
16 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed January 10, 2012

We just returned from Phuket and we stayed at Centara Villas near Karon Beach. We selected this hotel based on tripAdvisor reviews, price and availability (it was peak season). We were in for a surprise (of negative kind). We were very disappointed with our choice. Here are the reasons:

1. Location:
The resort is located on a hill between Patong and Karon. It is not walkable distance to either of the beaches. There are no restaurants or shops near by. You need to hire a taxi to go anywhere. The resort provides a shuttle 3 times a day to Patong and Karon beaches. But it is a ONE WAY shuttle (why would they run an empty shuttle back instead of picking up guests is beyond me). As you may know, the taxis in Phuket cost about 3 times as much as anywhere else in Thailand. So a trip for Lunch and/or dinner would cost you about 300-400 Bath extra. There is a path going to Karon beach which is about 15 minutes walk. It will lead you to the northern most end of the beach and it is another 15-20 minutes walk to the center of Karon town (where most restaurants are).

2. Resort Layout:
This is not a resort where you can take a leisurely stroll in the gardens. While the landscape is beautiful, the walkways, stairs and paths are steep (and I mean STEEP). The resort provides a golf cart service to go up/down from the lobby to your room. The pool is nice but again you need to be prepared to take a long walk. If you have any kind of knee or walking issues, go stay somewhere else.

3. Rooms:
The rooms are quite small for a resort that charges so much. We had requested an extra bed for my son. They gave us a room with 2 single beds and added a cot for my son. When we entered the room, we found that the cot was blocking the door such that we could only open it a crack!! We had to re-arrange some furniture to accommodate the cot and have some space to walk around.
Our room had a nice view of the Karon beach and Andaman Sea. As it was facing west, it tended to get very hot in the afternoons.
The room has A/C but the controller in our room was broken (it made the room very cold). They fixed it after 1 day. The bathroom is nice and it is not air-conditioned as it is partially open to outside. It was stuffy and hot even in December. I can't imaging what it would be like in summer.
The housekeeping was hit-or-miss. On the first 2 days, they just did some cursory cleaning, didn't change the bedsheet or towels and just kind of re-folded them. After we complained, they send someone to really do the cleaning.

4. Reception:
The reception was awful. It took them over 45 minutes before we were shown to our room and this was at a time when there were no other guests waiting. The persons at reception don't speak good english and it was a struggle to make them understand what we needed. They were also not helpful in suggesting any places to eat or help with phone numbers etc.
For a resort that hosts international clientele, they don't have a Concierge! This is a big no-no in my book. A concierge is invaluable when you are visiting a new place. The receptionists don't give any info so you are left on your own.

5. Food:
On the day we arrive, it was evening and we couldn't get any help in finding a restaurants. So we decided to order from room service. Kids wanted pizza but they has run out of pizza at 7 pm! We finally ordered some pannini and pasta. It was just OK food but the price was not (cost about $100). We never ordered room service after that.
The breakfast was fine. They had usual stuff like fruit, cereal, bread and omette station. There were not too many veggie options so we asked them to make some curry for us. They were accommodating but the curry was either too bland or too spicy.

6. Misc:
They have no wi-fi! We stayed in other places in Bangkok and Chiang-Mai and they all had wireless. The internet is not free. We paid 500 Baht for 3 days of service. You need to plug in your laptop into the ethernet socket provided near the bed as there is no wifi (except in lobby area).
The staff doesn't speak much english and it was a bit of a struggle calling them on the phone to ask for something.

Overall, a very disappointing stay. We would have been much better off staying in Karon proper or in Kata (even if it didn't have the "VIEW").

Room Tip: Ask for a room closer to the pool.
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
3 Thank vimalp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Evasion53, General Manager at Centara Villas Phuket, responded to this review, February 3, 2012
Dear Guests from Fremont (California),

Thank you for sharing the experience you had at Centara Villas Phuket.

We appreciate your feedback regarding the service and your comments have been passed to the concerned departments. However, we would like to point out the following:

• Check-in took longer because there was a discrepancy in regards to your reservation. You had booked for two adults and two children, but your daughters turned out to be also adults. Obviously, this had to be sorted out.
• You insisted on staying the four of you in one room. We do not normally accept more than three adults per room but we made an exception for you. No wonder you found the room a bit tight.
• As a small intimate property, we confirm there is no concierge service. Our multi-tasking guest service agents are here to attend to all guest requests. We regret you didn’t find them helpful or informative, but your observation has been passed to our Front Office Manager .
• Karon beach is accessible in no more than five minutes from the pool area
• If you intended to be in the hustle and bustle of Patong or Karon, our resort might not have been the right choice.

On a more positive note, we are glad you found the landscaping… and the view beautiful.

We trust that you will not judge us on this one experience and hope to welcome you back to Centara Villas Phuket, Phuket’s greenest retreat in the future.

Centara Villas Phuket
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Epsom, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
93 reviews
72 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
Reviewed January 7, 2012

We stayed at this hotel for 8 nights in february 2010 in a Deluxe Villa.
Rooms were unique as on stilts & had large balconies.Grounds are vast,with quite steep incline up to the lobby/bar & restaurant.There are little golf buggies that run around the resort if you have trouble walking.
The pool areas were lovely,we especially liked the top pool very tranquil.We used the spa a couple of times & had a couples massage,very nice.
I liked sitting on the sunloungers on the grass in front of the villas overlooking the sea.
We ate in the hotel restaurant twice,which was very nice & good value.
Staff wise,we had a very bolshie lady check us in(wish I could remember her name) unusual as Thai people are usually very friendly.We also found the reception staff quite distant if you ever needed any information,it might have just been a language thing.
We walked into Karon along the beach,a nice walk during the day.Gate closed at night.We also befriended one of the Centara drivers who took us into town a few times.He ended up driving us to our next hotel Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi(see my review)
Overall stay ok,but not one of our best.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Brigette
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Evasion53, General Manager at Centara Villas Phuket, responded to this review, February 9, 2012
Dear Guest,

Warm greetings from Centara Villas Phuket, Phuket’s greenest retreat!

Thank you very much for sharing the experience you had at Centara Villas Phuket two years ago.

It is with concern we read your comment in regards to the service provided by one of our guest service agent at the time. We train and remind all our team members to be helpful and courteous and we regret we did not meet your expectations on this occasion.

On a more positive note, we were pleased to learn that you enjoyed every other aspect of your stay with us. We do therefore hope that you will not judge us solely on the basis of this particular experience.

You might also be interested to know that since your last visit in February 2010 all the villas have been renovated and new enthusiastic team members have joined us.

We do hope you will choose to stay with us again and we are confident that your next stay will be pleasurable in every respect.

Sincerely,

Centara Villas Phuket
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London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed January 5, 2012

I cannot say enough good things about the stunning Centara Villas resort. We booked for a week in December and arrived early and exhausted after our long flight. We were greeted by the most friendly, happy staff and 2 ice cold coconuts. Once we got to our room (the most basic available) we were so happy to see a clean, spacious villa with a beautiful big bathroom. The views over Karon bay are breathtaking from most of the hillside Villas. The restaurants serve lovely food with a smile and the staff bend over backwards for the guests. Breakfast has everything you could want, including fish curry and pasta carbonara should you wish to eat that for breakfast!! For the rest of us toast, eggs, cereal and fruit are fresh and available. Reception staff are so friendly and so lovely, we were sad to leave after 1 week. We actually were supposed to go to Phi Phi for a week and had pre-booked but once we got there we were so disappointed we called Centara Villas straight away and booked back in for another week. They even gave us the same room again! I would not hesitate in recommending this hotel to anyone going to Phuket that wants a quiet, luxury place to stay that's close enough to the nightlife of Patong.

Room Tip: We stayed in the most basic twin room and we couldn't find one thing to complain about even if w...
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with friends
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    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank S77CEY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Prague, Czech Republic
Level Contributor
25 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed December 30, 2011

We have booked this hotel just one day in advance through internet. I did not have a chance to print out the reservation confirmation so I just wrote down my reservation number. When we arrived to the hotel at around 9 p.m. ladies at the reception informed us that they did not get our reservation and there is no reservation with our name in the system. They offered us that we can stay for one night but we need to pay double price compared to internet prices! They promised that their boss will solve the problem in the morning. Of course, I have not agreed on that as I have already paid for our whole stay with my credit card upfront and did not understand why the prices in the hotel are double compared to internet (especially when it was clear there would not be many other customers coming after 9 p.m. so they would not sold their rooms anyway)! Anyway, I lost my nerves at that moment completely, walked behind reception desk and explained ladies how the reservation system works. Of course, my reservation was there in the system! Receptionists just did not have a clue how the system works! Well – so hotel obviously needs new revenue manager and receptionists needs some training...

Our villa was very nice, bathroom must have been recently renovated. The view was fabulous! We walked to the beach during the day – it was overcrowded and definitely the worst beach I have seen in Thailand so far. On the way back we wanted to take tuk-tuk to the hotel (cause the walkway from the beach to the hotel closes at 6 pm) but driver asked us for 200 baths (app. 6 USD) which I find insane taking into account that we have paid 1 000 baths for 70 km drive from the airport to the hotel with brand new Toyota. Tuk-tuk prices are fixed and must be set up by some kartel agreement as we have asked several other drivers and all of them refused to take us those 1.5 km for less than 200 baths!

We have eaten only once in the hotel restaurant and food was slightly below Thai average with prices over Thai average. But the view from the restaurant is perfect! Breakfast was fair, no complaints there.

On our last day we were leaving at 6 a.m. We called to the reception several times to ask them to pick up our luggage but no one has replied. So we carried my luggage ourselves and when we walked to the reception we found out that staff was sleeping on the sofas right there! Well, if the hotel is charging this much for one night, I think they can afford to find a place for staff to sleep somewhere else then the reception. Anyway, when bell boy woke up and saw my luggage he asked me whether I carried it myself. I replied that I did and he started to laugh. Not sure what was that funny about fact that I had to carry it myself over those 70 steps uphill to the reception... BTW, some of them slept on the sofas even after receptionist woke them up to tell them that there are guests there...

And in the end our breakfast boxes were not ready even though we have asked for them previous evening.

So if you ask me whether I would recommend you this place or not I would not be sure what to reply. Location is beautiful but far from everything, rooms are simple but comfortable, food is average, swimming pool is small but nice, beach is ugly and far away, staff in incompetent. I would definitely never come back again.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank kasia f
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Evasion53, General Manager at Centara Villas Phuket, responded to this review, February 8, 2012
Dear Guest,

Warm greetings from Centara Villas Phuket, Phuket’s greenest retreat!

Since it is our goal to constantly improve all details of our hospitality, we are grateful that you have taken the time to inform us of the experience during your stay with us. It is through observations such as yours, that we are able to monitor our operation more closely and take corrective action when required.

We were sorry to learn that our front desk team could not immediately find your last minute booking on arrival. At the end of your short stay with us, the incident upon departure must have added insult to injury and we can only apologise for the complete lack of service you experienced when leaving at dawn. After investigation, it is correct that two members of our team were indeed sleeping. This is certainly not acceptable and you have our assurance that this has been addressed with those concerned to prevent any reoccurrence in the future.

On a more positive note, we are pleased to learn that you have found the newly renovated villas and the view to your liking. Thank you also for the photos which you have posted.

We are aware that your opinion of our service has been affected, however, we do hope that you will not judge us solely on the basis of this particular experience and that we shall be able to regain your confidence in the future.

With our reiterated thanks for bringing this to our attention and ensuring you of our constant care and attention, we remain,

Centara Villas Phuket
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Additional Information about Centara Villas Phuket

Property: Centara Villas Phuket
Address: 701 Patak Rd | Karon Beach, Karon, Phuket 83130, Thailand (Formerly Central Karon Village)
Location: Thailand > Phuket > Karon
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#13 Top resorts Hotel in Karon
#21 Spa Hotel in Karon
#24 Romantic Hotel in Karon
#28 Luxury Hotel in Karon
#32 Family Hotel in Karon
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Centara Villas Phuket 4*
Number of rooms: 72
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Found where lush jungle meets serene sea, Centara Villas Phuket is a romantic hideaway almost lost within a luxurious natural tropical backdrop, yet still only steps away from the sweeping expanse of Phuket's Karon Beach. Each totally private Thai-style villa, nestled within its own screen of green, directly faces the sea from a dramatic inclined perch, ensuring that views are endless and the quiet all-pervading. Some of the villas even offer the choice of either a private pool or Jacuzzi. This unique tropical oasis boasts a complete array of facilities and services including a swimming pool, two restaurants, bars and a SPA Cenvaree, making this a romantic hideaway just made for couples or small groups. With its relaxed pace and warm welcomes, this is a place from which to escape from the every day and find serenity, relaxation and the inner tranquillity that only natural beauty can bring. And all of this is just one hour's drive away from Phuket International Airport. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Centara Hotel Phuket
Centara Resort Phuket
Centara Villas Phuket Karon

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