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“Alpina was worth what we paid”

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Alpina Phuket Nalina Resort & Spa
Ranked #47 of 134 Hotels in Karon
Certificate of Excellence
San Francisco, California
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Alpina was worth what we paid”
Reviewed April 29, 2009

Our stay at the Alpina was overall a good experience. We paid about $70/night for the basic room and $90/night for the one night with pool access on agoda. Both rates included breakfast.

THE PEOPLE
At the reception, employees were always smiling, polite and helpful. Although the service provided always took a long time because of their limited English. It was very difficult to communicate with the hotel staff when we needed help getting somewhere and getting information. It is true that as tourists we should make an effort to speak the language of the country we are visiting, but this place is a large resort in a very touristy place (Phuket) and not a tiny boutique. Alpnia’s employees’ English speaking skills must be improved. Note that people at the bars are not as friendly as the receptionists.
The Alpina guests were mainly European.

FOOD & DRINKS
The breakfast buffet (Asian dishes, pastries, fruits, meats and pancakes, eggs and omelettes made to order) was very good and the hotel had happy hour from 5-6 and then 7-8PM. The drinks are slightly watered down, so we recommend drinking beer. There are several restaurants advertised but only the Tropicana (where you have the breakfast buffet) is open. I imagine that the two others (Grill and Pizzeria) will not open before next high season.

THE ROOMS
The rooms are very spacious and clean, but the beds are very firm, which I think is typical of Thailand, but slightly uncomfortable. The soap and shampoo are ‘refilled’ and did not smell very good. The toilet paper provided is of mediocre quality. Air conditioning works perfectly. The hotel offers free wireless internet, but doesn’t always work.

If you have the pool access room, you can enter the pool from your room. However, you cannot swim into the main pool, you actually have you get out of the pool and cross over.

Building #4 is isolated from the rest of the resort. If you're looking for a quiet place and a pool that's separated from the rest, then it's a good place. Nevertheless, we noticed construction going on the other side of Building 4, so it was at times noisy (especially disturbing in early morning) and then walk from the main pool to Building 4 smelled like sewage.

THE POOL
The hotel pool is fantastic, large enough for all the guests at the hotel (but we were there in low season). Complimentary towels were provided but needed to be replaced.

LOCATION
The location is the main disadvantage of this hotel. However, the hotel offers a shuttle to Kata beach every hour from 7-5PM. You can walk to the beach but it will take you about 20 mins to reach the area reserved to the Alpina hotel guests. At the beach, Alpina has a limited amount of beach chairs for guests to use, so it is wise to arrive early (before the 11AM bus).

OUR EXPERIENCE
We booked a pool access room online, but when we arrived they were sold out, so they upgraded us to a suite. The suite was fantastic, but we still would have wanted the room with pool access. It rained one night and we wanted a taxi to take us up the hill (less than a 10 minute walk) to a restaurant. The hotel taxi wasn't working and they "couldn't" find a driver to use the hotel tuk tuk to take us there. We ended up eating at Thai Thai across the street, which I do not recommend as one of us got food poisoning (The food and beer was the cheapest in the area).

We rented a scooter the last day for 250 baht and realized that we should have done this earlier. All taxis in Kata and Karon (we did not have time to visit Patong) charge the same outrageous prices – for this destination (200 baht to go around within 5mins, 300 baht if you want to go up the hill). Negotiations are a waste of time and taxi drivers get angry easily if you do try to negotiate. The taxi on the way to the hotel was 550 baht, but on the return the hotel wanted to charge us 900. We ended up paying 800 for a taxi right outside the hotel.

WHERE WE WENT
Best beaches (in this order) : KATA NOI, NAI HARN, KATA, KARON

View points: Karon’s (also called Kata) view point, and Phromthep Cape

WHERE WE ATE
The Cliff – food was ok but a bit priced for what you get. We went there at night, so the view was dark

The Dinosaur – worth going for the décor, as the cliff, it is a bit pricy for Phuket

Baan Chow view – A must go for the view, the kindness and service of the employees. Best moment is around 6 to 7pm for the sunset. It would be helpful to make a reservation to get a good table. Simply amazing. It's located on the road to the Karon View Point.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank MayAndMou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Boise, Idaho
Level 4 Contributor
17 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed April 17, 2009

This resort is in Kata, not Karon. The rooms are large and comfortable, with good beds and linens, and everything worked well - aircon, shower, water pressure, etc. We admired the gardens and architectural details, and were pleased by how many thoughtful design elements in the room enhanced the comfort of our stay.

If you're looking for seclusion, ask for building 4. If you want to be near the pool so you can watch your kids, ask for building 2. Building 3 is also a good choice - more private than 2, but close to the main pool also.

We used the shuttle service to the beach. The loungers are in a lovely location and we always found them available and clean.

At $80/night, we felt we got a very good value for the jaz pool room in building 4. But given the mediocre level of service, I wouldn't have been happy paying much more than $100 per night. English is poor at reception, so any special requests are hard to manage unless you're lucky enough to get the one or two employees who can really help you.

It's a reasonable choice for Kata, especially at the discount rates. But when prices are high, I'd look elsewhere to find a place with better service for the money.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Carruth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Alpina Phuket Nalina Resort & Spa

Property: Alpina Phuket Nalina Resort & Spa
Address: 7/1 Ketkwan Road, Karon, Phuket 83100, Thailand
Location: Thailand > Phuket > Karon
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#23 On the Beach Hotel in Karon
#23 Top resorts Hotel in Karon
#27 Spa Hotel in Karon
#37 Family Hotel in Karon
#38 Romantic Hotel in Karon
#40 Luxury Hotel in Karon
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Alpina Phuket Nalina Resort & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 140
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Offering an eclectic mix of unrivalled services and facilities, Alpina Phuket Nalina Resort & Spa is the destination of choice for singles, couples and families alike. A combination of charming oriental hospitality showcased by friendly and personalized service and intelligently designed facilities creates a perfect holiday experience with memories to last a lifetime. The resort's peaceful setting fosters a laid-back and relaxed ambience in which guests can completely switch off and enjoy the luxury of the surroundings and the many facilities at their disposal. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Alpina Phuket Nalina Hotel Karon
Alpina Phuket Nalina Resort And Spa
Alpina Phuket Nalina Resort & Spa Karon

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