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Karona Resort & Spa
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Reviews (247)
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All reviewskaron beachthe main beach roadthoroughly enjoyed my staybeauty salonthe entire staffno elevatorwithin easy reachsound of the waveslocation is idealair conditioningwalk in showersuperior rooma sea view roomprivate balconystayed here for nightsrooms were very cleanmin walk
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Reviewed November 14, 2007

My hubby and I stayed here for 4 nights back in April 2007 and loved it! I don't recall where I initially found the hotel but I booked directly with them. We rented a deluxe room and were upgraded to the honeymoon deluxe at check in so we were quite pleased. The rooms are very modern and have been completely redecorated so we felt it was a great value for the money. We had a stand up slate shower in the bathroom and an additional tub in the actual room which was a nice touch. Our room was exactly like the ones in the pic so no unpleasant surprises! I liked the toiletries that the hotel provided and I think all rooms have a balcony. It isn't beach front but just a short walk. Breakfast was plentiful and they change it up a little bit every day. The restaurant onsite is good as well. There are plenty of other shops/restaurants in walking distance for a change of pace and scenery. I did try the spa-would recommend the Thai Massage. The facial and pedi were avg but so cheap that it was hard to pass up! there are also some places on the corner that you can get massages/foot massages at for dirt cheap. They are good an dirt cheap if you are just looking for something basic. The staff does speak English but sometimes you do have to repeat yourself which I think is the norm so not a big deal. They were helpful though. Overall, would recommend this place to others and we would stay here again!!

Stayed: April 2007
Thank txslonghorn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 12, 2007

My family and I have just returned from 12 nights at the Karona Resort and Spa and we really enjoyed our stay. My family consists of two adults and two children 10 and 14 and we were looking for a small inexpensive place close to the beach, facilities and the Karona fitted the bill. When I first booked our accommodation the Karona was rated as a 10 on Trip Advisor and then I watched in horror as it slip to 43 so I didn't expect much and then we were pleasantly surprised when we arrived.
Rooms: We had interconnecting Deluxe Seaview Rooms. These rooms had just been recently renovated, of a good size, large shower with good pressure, ceiling fan, aircon, small balcony with two chairs, TV, bar fridge, king size bed, room safe and plenty of hanging space for clothes. The rooms had a Thai theme, bright colours and wall hangings which we liked. We didn't spend allot of time in our rooms so we weren't looking for absolute luxury.
The resort: It’s looking a bit tired in places and could do with a bit of a face lift, especially the entrance to the Resort as first impressions are important, however, other than that everything else was fine. The Karona is situated on the side of a hill so there are plenty of steps to your room and pool area but not a real consern unless you have a disability. The Karona is located 50mtr up a side street from the main beach road at the south end of Karon Beach next to Kata Centre with easy access to shopping, eating, beach, massage and Tuk Tuks. Some of the Resort facilities are two pools, pool area bar, spa, massage facility, restaurant and internet.
Meals: Breakfast was included in our package and was available in the undercover dining area called Chilies Restaurant Terrace located next to the pool and it’s waterfall which was a peaceful setting to have the first meal of the day. The American Style Buffet was a bit limited compared to the bigger resorts we had stayed at before, however, the omelettes were great and cooked on the spot. Tan and I always looked forward to our coffee and would often have three or four. I never had lunch except for the odd chicken sandwich and chips by the pool which was enjoyable. We had dinner at Chilies on our first night and really enjoyed the meal, however, more expensive than outside.
Restaurants near by: We often had dinner at Hale Hallo just up the road, very good food, friendly and cheap. On average it cost us $18-$26 AUS this included mains, desserts and drinks. On alternate nights we would eat at other restaurants close by (On the Rocks, Dino, Thai house 44) or catch a Tuk Tuk to Karon.
Pools: Two pools, one large pool which overflowed down over a wall water feature into a smaller pool next to Chilies Restaurant Terrace. The large pool (that had a spa area) was the main swimming area and there are four rows sun chairs facing the pool. The Pool Bar was located near by and was handy for a cocktail or a beer and when it was too hot to be in the sun it was a cool retreat to have a talk to the other guests or the friendly staff. Our children enjoyed the pool area and always looked forward to a swim.
Internet: Four computers where located at the back of Chilies Restaurant which we normally used after breakfast at a 100 Baht per hour. There are cheaper internet cafés in Kata Centre but I preferred the security of the resort.
Staff: The staff were great and being a small resort we got to know them well. Always friendly, smiling and most of them spoke English. My son quite often left his money and MP3 laying about the room and nothing went missing.
Interesting: We met various families and couples that were staying at the Karona for two or three nights as their accommodation at the Horison Karon Beach Resort (large resort up the hill from the Karona) was over booked or some maintenance was being carried out on their room!!

  • Stayed: September 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
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4  Thank 8Regatta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 31, 2007

We have just returned from Phuket and had a great time overall. We encountered some problems in reaching our destination in that the flight from Heathrow to Kuala Lumpa was delayed and then a passenger fell so we made an emergency landing in Delhi. This lead to us missing our connectiong flight. However, the airline put us up in an hotel and we caught the next early mornign flight.

The hotel is about 1 hours drive away from the airport. The picture of the hotel is more impressive than when you actually see it in person. We were given a superior room. The room had a limited amount of space i.e. tables. There was only one coffee table. The basin was outside the bathroom and was the only desk space to put things on. The toilet and shower are in a small area - so whoever you share the room with better be someone you are close to. The lighting in the room was very poor, so bad that it was difficult to see yourself in the mirror. We requested a room change, as it was rainy season so would have been plenty of free rooms, but instead they changed the light bulbs. It was an improvement at least, although not ideal.

The breakfast is pretty limited in its choice. There is a choice of eggs that you can have as well as frsh fruit. However, it was slightly off putting having so many flys/insects sitting on the fruit. We actually ate twice in the hotel, and i would not recommend it. We ordered a burger and pizza - and both were the worst we have tasted in Phuket. The Greek salad was ok.

The staff are friendly and polite and helpful. The hotel provided two complimentary bottles of water each day which was good.

The hotel offered spa treatments with a 40% discount, although the outside massage parlours are still cheaper.

The hotel has a swimming pool at two levels, although the bottom one is more for show. The other pool was not bad, but more for cooling down rather than actually swimming.

A couple of days before leaving when we tried to reconfirm our flights with the reception staff, the airline advised us that our seats had been cancelled for some strange reason. However, paper tickets had been sent to us. The airline wanted copies of the tickets which the hotel faxed over at a cost. It was strange that the airline when speaking to the hotel staff advised them of this and made no mention of it when we were actually talking to them - however it was not worth arguing about.

The hotel is located about 5 min from the beach. With a string of massage places also near by, although it was strange that all the parlours charged exactly the same prices. Nearby the hotel is a bunch of restaurants in shacks - they are ok although not necessarily all that cheap. It is worth carrying on walking to the restaurants further down.

Overall a relaxing holiday. We were lucky that it only rained on the day we arrived and departed. The hotel was adequate with no real problems other those comments mentioned above. I would not stay in this hotel again though.

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
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    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Thank Dancingqueen65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 30, 2007

We have just got back from 10 nights at the Karona Beach Resort. The hotel is in desperate need of renovation it felt very shabby. Our room was ok, it was cleaned very well each day and cleaning staff were very nice, i wish i could say the same for the rest of the staff. The breakfast was cold most mornings and not a great deal of variety, several mornings we had to ask for coffee it was not offered, there were only two smiley breakfast staff the rest didn't want to be there. This was our 3rd stay in Thailand, I love it . We will not be staying at the Karona Beach Resort again and will be telling friends the same.

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
1  Thank Gale50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 2, 2007

I've stayed here twice - initially in Feb 2004 and it was fabulous. Great room, excellent bar with happy hour and beautiful cocktails, multi-level pool with lots of sunlounges. Breakfast was consistently great with lots of choices and really good quality food. We couldn't fault a thing. It was really busy at this time and the Kata shops, which the resort is just a minute or so walk away from, were always busy with other tourists out and about.

Went back in June 2007. Still good value but that particular week there was a lot of maintenance work going on. The room they put us in was a wing undergoing renovations - ie. painting, sanding, freshening up. Our room was yet to be done so looked a bit tired but seemed to be next on the list. Unfortunately there was no hot water in our room the first night/morning. This was either an issue with that wing being under renovation or a problem with the water having to run for ages to warm up at all (as in, run for at least 10 minutes). Whatever it was, it was fixed once we raised it with reception.

The bottom pool had been totally drained as it was being retiled, it did make it look a bit shabby but from past experience at the resort, I know it looks really pretty when both pools are filled, the sun is shining and everything is in order. Breakfast was still good but limited choices due to the lack of guests. Fantastic omlettes and pastries though! There was a lot of work going on about the place, I noticed a lot of the sunlounges were broken and piled up in the pool bar (which did not open once in our 3 night stay) but were being repaired and laquered when we were leaving. I'm quite confident the resort had become somewhat run down over the last couple of years (compared to our last visit) but it seems efforts were definitely being made to bring it up to scratch. The resort had very few people there when we stayed this time, so it was probably a good time to get all this maintenance work done, before the busy season. The restaurant staff were particularly nice.

The location is good, if you like being near Kata. I would recommend it if you are staying in Jan - March, because Kata is great when it's peak season and people are out and about and the restaurants and bars are full. Unfortunately, when we were there in June, Kata was dead - so much so that at times we were the only tourists whatsoever walking down the street. It was a ghost town. Which meant there was a lot of 'please come into my shop/restaurant/tuk tuk' etc. We ended up going to Patong every day, as it was busy and had more atmosphere. However, I loved Kata in peak season and would stay there again. The beach is beautiful in peak season too and right across from the resort. (It's very rough in June though so we didn't set foot on it). Definitely check out the foot and body massage shops a few doors away from the resort (in the Patong direction) - really great services, reasonably priced. I had a foot scrub and french manicure and a thai massage, which were all brilliant. The seafood shack/restaurants a few doors further past the massage shops are really great too, (but the giant prawns out the front are a total rip off - just order the nice curries and noodles and things off the menus and it will all be fresh and delicious and cheap, cheap, cheap).

All in all, this was a great resort in 2004 and will probably be very nice again soon, and excellent value too.

  • Stayed: June 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank AmyPC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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