This is a very high-quality hotel and from the point of view of food, cleanliness, friendliness etc cannot be faulted. Very high standards in all these areas. We also got a quite good room-rate in off-season.
However there were a couple of matters that were off-putting for us.
The first was that when we were arrived at the hotel, we were offered a seat and a cool welcome drink before we checked-in; we thought, great, and sat down to enjoy it - then they proceeded to try to convince us to come to a timeshare promotion (my term, not theirs) at another Marriott in the area. This "hard-sell" concept before we even checked-in was VERY off-putting for reasons that should be obvious.
Secondly, although we had a good room-rate, we found everything at the Marriot very expensive. Now I have to say that prior to this we had been travelling around the country for a month in medium-priced accommodation and were watching our budget. So the Marriott price level just came as a jolt to us. Drinks cost multiples of similar drinks at regular restaurants and cafes in Thailand, laundry is the "western standard" per-item rather than per-kilo, and internet was the most expensive I saw in 3 months in Asia, all of which forced us to watch our budget and find alternatives.
Specific pros and cos:
+ good kids club
+ cleanliness and appearance were perfect
+ good pools, 2 waterslides. Our kids ABSOLUTELY loved the pools here.
+ friendly staff, good english (English in Thailand is often basic)
+ REALLY excellent breakfast buffet
+ very good gym; lots of machines and never busy
+ Large fridge in-room
+ aircon very effective in-room
+ everything very well decorated
- princes for food and drinks high (as much as possible we used happy hour 2-for-1 promotions or went outside the hotel)
- laundry prices (per piece unlike per kilo as elsewhere in Thailand; we found a shop up the road that did laundry for a fraction of the Marriott cost)
- kids club has charges for activities that really should be free given the materials costs are minimal and the staff are there anyway
- Timeshare promotion before we even checked-in was VERY offputting
- high internet prices (a multiple of the standard rates in Thai internet cafes)
- We got better deals on attractions and shows (eg Fantasea) from local agents who were willing to negotiate on their commissions. For example an agent split his commission and said we could bring our 4-year old free to Fantasea if we said she was 3 and therefore didn't need her own seat. The Marriott concierge desk couldn't offer any such "solutions" to us.
A couple of final items:
a) it's not far to walk to the beach, just 5 mins or so across a park, however the beach has very big waves and is not safe for swimming. So you'll probably spend most of your time at the hotel pool.
b) Compared with elsewhere we visited in Thailand, taxis and tuk-tuks are relatively expensive and they won't negotiate on price. I wouldn't really recommend this area to budget travellers.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Just steps from the crystal waters and white sands of Surin Beach, the Novotel Phuket Surin Beach Resort offers the perfect retreat. Contemporary comfort, a warm welcome and a cool welcome drink on arrival helps make your stay stress-free. Located just 30 minutes drive from Phuket International Airport and 25 minutes from the nightlife and shopping of Patong, you can really make the most of your time in one of Thailand's premier beach resorts. Stay connected from your deluxe room or suite at this resort-style hotel in Phuket thanks to high-speed internet access. Relax in front of the flat-screen TV as you watch a movie, or unwind on your private balcony or terrace. The white sands of Surin Beach are just a short stroll away as is the popular Catch Beach Club. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Courtyard Phuket At Surin Beach Hotel 1234587
- Courtyard Hotel Cherngtalay
- Phuket Courtyard
- Courtyard Surin Beach
- Novotel Phuket Surin Beach Resort. Thailand