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Rising Sun Residence
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Reviewed June 16, 2013

My family of 5 visited Thailand for the first time in March 2013. My kids are 15, 13 and 10. As busy working parents, we did not have a lot of time to plan our vacation, so we were attracted to the advantage of having a driver and the benefit of local expertise to help us out. We were not disappointed! Khun Wipa was amazing. We let her book all of our dinners - lots of local Thai options, but also some of the best Italian (kids request) and steak we've had. Our driver was excellent and took us to all the best spots. We said we wanted to go to his favorite beach, and it was perfect. We also took Khun Wipa's cooking class, which we would highly recommend. The villa was huge, and we loved having the private pool. Breakfast made to order every morning was also nice. We highly recommend Rising Sun!

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with family
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4  Thank recking_crew
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 9, 2013

The moment we stepped out of PI airport, we knew we were going to have a great time. We were greeted by our driver with a big sunny smile. He loaded our luggage and was already instructed by Khun Wipa and Ms. Prapussorn where we wanted to go. We were forewarned by Trip-advisors that there might be a language barrier with the drivers. We went to the supermarket and he waited patiently for us.

On arrival to RSR, Ms. Prapussorn (on behalf of Wipa) was waiting for us with jasmine flower bracelets in front of the 3 bedroom villa with private pool at RSR. She helped plan our activities for our 4 day stay. We relaxed at Nai Harn beach, rode on elephants, had massages, visited Wat Chalong and White Buddha. We always enjoyed our morning swim in the villa's private pool. We also had a delicious dinner at Kan Eang Pier Restaurant about 5 minutes of driving.

Breakfast and fresh seasonal fruits were served daily. Wipa and her staff goes to the market daily. Breakfast was abundant with choices. Our housekeeper meticulously clean our villa from dishes to lanai! We didn't have any problems with water temperature or pressure. I think their herbal soap/ bottle shampoos are manufactured just for the Rising Sun. They were in bottles but we didn't have problems with them. The L'occitane bottles (at Ritz) were difficult to squeeze.

We are thankful to have a driver included. We realized it is difficult to get to some places with public transport plus language barrier and taxis because were 5 of us. Taxi has a capacity of 3/4 PAX.

Thank you, Rising Sun for an unforgettable and hospital stay in Phuket. We will be back. Kob kun Kaa

Stayed: May 2013, traveled with family
1  Thank Hunneeb33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 3, 2013

I had very high hopes for this place. A tripadvisor traveller's choice winner and one of the top places to stay in Phuket. I feel that at the moment the hotel is resting on it's laurels and needs to raise standards to deserve the 5 star ratings and amazing comments. It is a mystery to me how there continue to be so many 5 star reviews and no criticism.

Let me just say that the staff are lovely. Very friendly, happy to help and Wipa can organise and advise on some great things to do/eat in the local area. If the staff were bad then it would have gone from an average stay to a disappointing one.

You've probably read loads of glowing reviews of this place telling you about all the good things so I'm not going to do that here, go read the others. Below is an honest appraisal of the things which in my opinion we not up to scratch and detracted from my stay. Hopefully the hotel will take notice and improve some things, but at least fellow travellers can be aware.

The included driver, as everyone says, is pretty much essential to having a good trip as the hotel is so remote and there is nowhere to walk to. Our driver spoke very little English and on several occasions was reluctant to wait for the length of time we asked even though we were well within our time limit. An hour or so at a location seemed fine but if you say I'm going to the beach and dinner, see you in 3-4 hours, he got a bit funny about it. I don't really want to negotiate with a driver that is bought and paid for in my room rate so that was a slight irritation when planning days out. On the whole he was ok, drove incredibly slowly everywhere to the point that other motorists kept honking their horn at him, but we just allowed extra time for his poor driving when planning a day and tried to look at it as a bit of comedy rather than getting annoyed. We soon gave him the affectionate nickname of Manuel (UK people will know why).

We were unable to make full use of the pool in the evening/night because half of the pool lights did not work. I reported it but they were not fixed during my trip and it wouldn't surprise me if they still don't work now. There doesn't seem to be many if any maintenance checks going on like a larger complex and when most of the pool and hot tub are pitch black at night it makes it hard to enjoy one of the main perks of the complex and surely this is easily noticeable to staff with basic checks.

If the Rising Sun did not charge such high rates then some of these things I wouldn't mind so much. I would like to just flag some things up to the tripadvisor crowd who seem to think it's a 5 star luxury paradise. I compare the Rising Sun to some other island hotels in Thailand which I have stayed in which were truly amazing and in the same mid-high price bracket, namely the Jamahkiri on Koh Tao and Silavadee Resort on Koh Samui.

When I'm on a holiday which is very pool and beach orientated the one thing I really like is a good shower. Sadly the Rising Sun could take the award for the worst shower I've ever used in a hotel. Not only did the water pressure keep alternating every 30 seconds between a dribble and normal flow but the water temperature kept swinging from completely cold to burning hot every minute too so had to either keep adjusting the shower controls or step out of the water. Either way it was irritating and uncomfortable - a £30 a night hostel would have provided a better shower. The shampoo/gel/conditioner were in tiny bottles which were too hard to squeeze so had to tip upside down and wait and wait... Cheap and tedious - get some proper size bottles or dispensers for guests. Covered in sand/salt from the beach there's not enough in them to last more than two people showering and they weren't replaced the next day either, only on day 3.

The pool and lounge area is a comfortable size for two couples but I am incredibly thankful that only 2 of the 5 villas were occupied until the penultimate day of our stay, because when two families turned up and started using the pool it made things very cramped. If you are unlucky enough to stay at a busy time with 4 or 5 full villas it would not be a peaceful nor relaxing experience to use the pool area or sun loungers and I dare say could ruin your holiday - screaming kids in such an intimate complex is not what I call fun, don't be fooled into thinking a family of 4 would get their own separate villa and pool - they are quite happy to get the rollaway beds out and use the one bedroom villas! This spoils the peace and quiet for everyone, especially if you are on a couples holiday and they can monopolise the pool quite easily. The Rising Sun should not allow a family in the one bed villas - with the 5x one bed villas booked you could end up with a mix of 20 adults/kids sharing the small swimming pool!! Also, the photos and other reviews don't mention that the pool and lounge area are right next to a road which is by no means a main road but has a reasonable amount of traffic up and down which spoils the peacefulness.

The main lounge of the one bedroom villa we stayed in was a good size but it had a tiny uncomfortable sofa which was barely big enough for two people to sit together on and I know you're not meant to go on holiday to watch TV etc etc but a little bit of TV is nice! The first square box old style TV I've seen for years greeted us. An example of the Rising Sun resting on it's 5 star laurels. Not only would investing in widescreen LCD TVs for the villas be more power efficient but they would pump out a lot less heat into the room than the old TVs. The air conditioning units are on their last legs and struggle anyway so every little helps.

It was a relief to get to the hotel in Bangkok after the stay at the Rising Sun because of the incredibly hard bed. Why such a hard mattress? The pillows were cheap and flat too. We both slept quite badly and didn't feel as well rested as we hoped.

To conclude, perhaps by Phuket standards this place is amazing, I haven't spent a lot of time there. If so I would hate to stay at the other places! However it is not amazing by my standards or by the standards of the other islands like Tao or Samui. On balance there were many positive aspects to my stay and trip to Phuket but I wouldn't book the Rising Sun again and not sure I could recommend it to family and friends, I've had too many wonderful stays at other places which provide true relaxation and luxury for a similar price.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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10  Thank Leigh B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 9, 2013

This year, 2013, together with my family and friends, we decided to enjoy the spring break for the second time in a raw at the Rising Sun Residence in Phuket. Usually the second time in the same place is not an enthusiastic experience like the first one; in this case I have to admit that it actually was. Definitely!

The place is well organized, clean, efficient, relaxing. And the Owners (a very nice and fine Lady and her energetic husband) run the place bringing a lot of experience and attention to all the guests. On top, the personnel taking care of the premises and the service are well trained and professional.

The property is made with seven big villas and five one-bedroom smaller villas and we checked both of them. Perfect!
The location is far away from the traffic and the crowded places, yet quickly reachable with the driver provided by the hotel.
Moreover, if you need advices about any kind of dining or touring or sightseen, just ask at the reception or directly to the owners.

Not to forget, the position of the villas is such that you can really enjoy the sun rising at dawn and, automatically, your spirit rises.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Michele_in_China
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 31, 2013

A lovely and amazing stay I had with my family in Rising Sun Residence. It was a great fun. The rooms were really so good and beautifull. The reception lobby was excellent. The swimming pool is also very good. The staff was really nice and service was very good. The food was also good and we really enjoyed a lot. I am again planning to visit there in future.

Room Tip: All rooms are very good and nice.
  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank CoolHimachal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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