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“Not that relaxing”
Review of Relax Bay Resort

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Relax Bay Resort
Ranked #12 of 84 Hotels in Ko Lanta
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 12, 2013

Stayed in the 'Tent Experience' however I would not recommend this, room was very small and with no air con as you can imagine it gets very hot under canvas! Resort was nice but not very authentic and I have eaten better food in Thailand. Breakfast however was great. One major problem with this place is the dogs- I was nearly attacked by the dog owned by the Yoga teacher for simply walking out of my room. The yoga teacher the continued to shout at me as if it was my fault. I have had better service elsewhere.

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Lia_2005
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alainrelax, Owner at Relax Bay Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 13, 2013

Dear Lia.
I do not know what the purpose is of this review, but one complaining one year after date ? What did we do to you that you 11 months after you stayed with us, you find the time to try to make negative publicity. Suffice to say, that since May last year we changed the roofs of the tent. Now the tents are covered with a bamboo and grass-leaves roofs, And as for the dog; This dog does not belong to the hotel, neither does the yoga teacher. She is no part of our staff. She is an independent teacher who happens to be a very good one. That her dog is crazy, i agree, and that she should take better care of it, I also agree, and we ahve had a big thundering discussion about it, but you cannot blame the hotel for her shortcomings. For the record: I have been almost bitten too, However I see no reason why one year later you should report this and blame the resort.

And jus to let you know, since you complain about the smallness of the tent, since this year all customers can ask for a picture of our bungalows. I have views of the bungalow, its rooms, its bathrooms and for most of them even the view from the balcony. I try my utmost to make sure that anybody who books via us, knows exactly our strengths and our weaknesses, and has no negative surprises when visiting us. We are not your mainstream resort, so, for sure, not everybody can relate to our resort, and I understand this, so and i want to make sure , that by visiting us, you are not disappointed and have the vacation you deserve. We are nit here to take your money and to cheat you; We are here trying to make it as nice as possible to ahve a good holiday.
So, I cannot understand why anybody would want to hurt our reputation by giving outdated information a year later. I have put in a complaint with tripadvisor and would hope that they take away this comment. If not, well, at least you know how I feel.
Lia, have a nice day, let go of you negative feelings and enjoy the moment. alain.

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198 - 204 of 696 reviews

Reviewed April 11, 2013

At this place time literally stops the moment you arrive! The staff was always helpful and had a smile on their faces, the breakfast was tasty and the curry in the evening was a rippa! If you want to see the town, hotel staff drops you off near the pier twice a day! The rooms have rustic charm but I would take an air-con bungalow if I stayed here again! The beach is not the most appealing due to the rocks but the bean-bags are perfect to chill out! Much better than sunbeds! As it's a hotel food and drinks are a bit more expensive! But along the beach are a few cheaper bar and restaurants. Enjoy the gorgeous sunsets, they are stunning! Great atmosphere here!

  • Stayed: March 2013
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Thank chuchino83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alainrelax, Owner at Relax Bay Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 14, 2013

hello,
I would like to thank you for your nice review.
As for the condition of the beach. I dont understand this year, but it seems the season changed about 3 weeks to early. With that the sea currents change too, and everything changes. Our little cove has this particular thing, that the currents sometimes bring in the sand, sometimes take away the sand,and sometimes just put the sand on the wrong place. One does see it, but we have a sandbag seawall under the beach of about almost 2 m high and composed of 4000 sandbags. If in low season the full moon happens to be on a stormy day, with tropical rain and winds, wel then you do have a wonderful, exhilarating; totally freeky storm. Kind of like in the movie Key West with Humprey bogard. Off course, when you come to thailand and expect a romantic sunny sunset, you dont neet to find yourself in a kind of twilight zone, not knowing if you will need a swim vest or not in the resort.
Then this little matter of being a bit more expensive. I understand we charge here and there a bit more, but : We have a staff of 47 to pay, taxes, rent, OT, social security (Yes we do) and all the other kind of things a modern society demands. And even bonuses, because, i want my staff to be customer friendly, so i reward them for that. Actually it my customers who made this happen. As i checked the comments , 90% of the them concerning my staff were positive, so i freely added some extras to their paycheck.
But in the end we are talking about a higher price of half a euro or dollar ?
But anyway, if traveling on a budget every dime counts. In my backpacking-traveling i could only afford 200 THB per night with 2. persons. Actually we cut on the room price, to have more beer. :-), but we had a great time, and yes, i would not have been able to afford Relax bay.
Have a great day, and hope to see you back. First Big Singh will be on my bill. Thanks. Alain

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Reviewed April 10, 2013

I rarely get time to write reviews, but there is so much good press about this place I felt the need to. The good press is all due to the price of this place, however the prices have gone up and the resort just isn't clean enough to justify it. My main complaint was the state of the mattresses. As a doctor, I am far too aware what an unclean mattress could mean! We stayed in 2 rooms over 2 nights. The mattresses and beds supporting the mattresses were the dirtyest we came accross on our travels to Thailand over the past couple of years. This place is probably the worst value-for-money place we stayed.

The good points:
-reception staff are lovely
-nice pool
-nice beach (although the dead coral can be a bit painfull underfoot!)
-very relaxing areas to chill out

We hired a car and drove around the island - if we went back to Lanta we would go and stay around the Kantiang(sp?!) bay area.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank valarie85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alainrelax, Owner at Relax Bay Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 10, 2013

Hello,
Sorry, but why did you not complain to the reception when you found the matrasses in a bad state. ? Actually, we are in the process of replacing our older matrasses by new ones, and since the 2nd of April, I have about 10 upstairs in the stores. High season is ended, so we have time now to work on the yearly upgrade of the hotel. As for the beds, i will have a good talk with our Housekeeping. We still have some of the old wooden beds, made of logs, but those too, because they can accumulate dust, are being changed. So, if you had a room with the older beds, i can blame it on the bed, if however your room had already newer bed, then the fault is totally ours. But, we try to be are relax, for the customer, for ourselves and for the staff. And sometimes, well, we could/might/should/need/maybe/ be less relaxed for boss and staff. But fortunately we have our client’s comments to make us remember when to wake up. We would prefer however to get the comments at reception. Then we can take action immediately. Anyway, suffice to say, action started being taken, the moment I read the complaint about the beds. Should not be. Have a nice day. Alain.

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Reviewed April 8, 2013

Very nice welcome to the resort in the evening.

Quite nice resort, could be quite charming. But we stayed in a hut with fan only and it was just too hot to to sleep. So we checked out the next day.

The breakfast is mediocre, the food, too.

The pathways are still paved with the corals that died a few years ago, when the sea temperature went 2 degrees C up. The beach itself is not very inviting, take care of stones in the water.

Room Tip: Get a hut house up the hill to have the air moving.
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank Karin T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alainrelax, Owner at Relax Bay Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 10, 2013

Hello Karin. I am sorry to hear you hat trouble with the heat. But i would like to remind you, that in the mail i send to you on the "3 rd, the day before you arrived and in which you wanted a room ASAP for one night, i presented you an AC , and i quote: I block an AC, as the weather can be hot for now. This with the knowledge that travellers coming from europe where the temperatures were about 0-5 ° will find themselves confronted with heat around 30-34 and 80% humidity. And this temperature difference, can be stressfull. I know, i used to do NGO work In the Bihar where temperatures reached 45° and more in the afternoon.
As for the coral, this is dead coral thrown onto the beach by the sea. I do not know the age, but probably some centuries old. We re-use it on the pathways as stabilisator. As coral is namely composed of shells of small animals, it has a certain capacity to hold water. Put into earth; mixed with good soil and then having grass planted on top of it, makes that it, kind of acts a a small watertank. You cannot use it everywhere, but it a eco friendly way of re-using that what nature gives us. At the same time by removing this small dead coral, we kind of clean the beach from annoying pebbles. And i am sorry to hear you did not like our Buffet, as i take great lengts to have as large a choice as possible in relation to the roomprice. I can assure you, we dont make money on it.

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Reviewed April 7, 2013

After 2 weeks in Thailand where we have seen different islands I think that "Relax Bay Resort" was the best place to stay. It has a very relaxing atmosphere and the staff is very friendly. I would recommend a bungalow with aircon. I had the best vegetarian red thai curry ever and the breakfast is also very good. I would definitely come back!

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Vanillavicky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alainrelax, Owner at Relax Bay Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 29, 2013

Dear customer,

Thank you for your nice comments. And rest assured that we do our job with love and the best we can. Mistakes included. But during your stay all went supposedly perfect. And the comment that I appreciate the most is when you mention my staff is friendly and helpful. This makes me proud of them. So id idid give them an extra bonus.
:-)alain

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Reviewed April 5, 2013

I spent five nights at Relax Bay and while it's not the most luxurious, it is truly one of the most beautiful and relaxation is all that one can accomplish. A beach side resort, the likes I've never experienced, as it is truly the jungle and not a Disneyfied, faux tropical kitchy upscale resort; this is the real deal. I stayed in an air conditioned bungalow, steps from the beach. Thailand is hot and humid, the likes I've never experienced and while they offer bungalows without a/c, I couldn't imagine it, as the jungle also brings with it many bugs. Thus, the a/c rooms windows close and you'll have a better nights sleep. The beach is beautiful, the restaurant excellent and the service may not be five star, you will be treated like a guest in a family home. The daily breakfast was also surprisingly good, with many different selections daily and anything you wanted made to order. The beach bar staff, fantastic and the daily massages on the beach unforgettable. If you want to experience the "real" Ko Lanta, this is the place, with a European flair, this is the place. A great place to go with friends and spend a week. Also great for children.

Room Tip: Do yourself a favor and get an air conditioned room. The heat and humidity in Thailand is no joke...
  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank RichardV413
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 12, 2013

After having stayed in four different locations in Thailand in february/March this year, Relax Bay still stands out as my number one place.
It was not the most expensive, it was not the most luxurous, it was not the most fancy. But it just had the right combination of good quality, charm, and chilled atmosphere.
We stayed in a VIP bungalow, which was pretty basic, but compared to the price still nice. And the housekeeping was fine.
I have read some of the mixed reviews on Relax Bay and still don’t get it. The restaurant serves good food to reasonable prices. Loved the green curry, and the pomelo salad – not to mention the curried fried rice. The BBQ night was among the best we tried, and it is no problem to bring food to your private veranda or the beach which was nice for us since we travelled with small children.
The staff is nice, helpful and pays great awareness to their guests.
The beach bar and the beach shelters (which though get occupied a little too early in the morning now and then) make life on the beautiful beach almost perfect. The way the resort has used the ground is overall very good and with great respect towards nature.
Nothing bad? Maybe these tree small things:

1) I had disappointments in the mornings where the breakfast did not comply to the same minimum standards every day. I mean either you have müsli or you don’t. And the staff could have paid better attention towards always keeping the buffet attractive.

2) The beach and the restaurant tends to get crowded with outside guests some days. But hey, I came myself after having moved to another resort to enjoy both beach and restaurant.

3) For too many days during our stay both pizza, lasagna and spaghetti bolognaise was finished in the restaurant.

That doesn’t change my opinion that this place gets my top rating. I would love to come back and would recommend Relax Bay to everyone.

Room Tip: The VIP bungalows are good and we loved the A/C.
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank BenjaminMunk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alainrelax, Owner at Relax Bay Resort, responded to this reviewResponded March 16, 2013

Hello Benjamin.
Thanks for the nice review. And you are kind of right in your description. As for the pizzas, totally normal that you didn't get any. Our Oven broke down. As it is a European model, installed on a far away island, welcome to Thailand. Forget that locally they have the spare parts, so we had to send it to Phuket. There it is still in repair, and as the spare parts need to be ordered in Europe, where the weather is not all that perfect, well…..NO oven, No spare parts and No possible repair within the next month. So NO pizza. So, Pizza being a good income dish, we did loose money too,and for teh moment still no oven. But you learn to accept that here, otherwise you get crazy. The thing about the spaghetti/lasagna however, should not have happened.. But, after some soft inquiries and showing this comment around, I managed to find out the reason: As they are forbidden to order lthe local sold minced meat, as quality is not good, we order “charolais-beef” minced meat in Phuket. They deliver only once a week, or you need to pay for the transport. Staff forgot to order and was afraid to tell me, because I would now they had forgotten to order and probably made a remark about the extra transport cost and the forgetfulness. So better say nothing, wait, play ostrich, and if nobody had written about it on the Internet, great chance the boss will not have known about it and so everybody would have been happy.
Anyway the order was made this week and bolognaise is again on menu. ☺ I assure, nobody got hurt or was punished after i went to check in the kitchen.

I know that according to European standards this is a CAN NOT, but then again: look where it got us. Stressed, overworked, never happy, always wanting the most and forgetting things cannot always be organized as we want it to be. As manager is maybe a big mistake to say it, but after 40 years being my own boss and having played by all the (management) rules as it should be…. well, maybe the Thai/Asian way of looking at things not so strictly is also right. At least I know that with a Thai on the world banking system, they would never have gotten us in this mess. Besides, don’t forget: if in Europe you need to complain, just phone in and push 1 for kitchen complaints, 2 for customer problems, 3….. Anyway, Benjamin, thanks for your nice comment, we are who we are. Mistakes included. At least for until the next mistake everything will be good.

And as always, Benjamin, if you come back, and i hope you do, i will have a bottle of wine at the ready and make sure we have pizza. Even if i have to get it at the competition.
Have a nice day. Alain

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Additional Information about Relax Bay Resort

Address: 111 Moo 2 | AO Phrae Ae - Koh Lanta, Ko Lanta 81150, Thailand
Location: Thailand > Krabi Province > Ko Lanta
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Ko Lanta
#8 Family Hotel in Ko Lanta
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Ko Lanta
Price Range: $25 - $66 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Relax Bay Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 32
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Relax bay is not your average hotel. If you look for a traditional hotel with AC, concrete walls and all amenities you can find in any deluxe hotel anywhere in the world. Well, we are not the place to be. Our rooms are Huts, spaced between 5 and 10 m from each other and set in a as Jungle-ish possible setting. There is almost no concrete and we constructed our bungalows under the trees. This means they are in the shade. Furthermore the grass-type roofs are overhanging and give protection against the sun and around the bungalows we planted flowers and plants to block out the sun. Shade means coolness but also darkness. Bamboo, a living natural product also soaks up the moisture in the air. We air the rooms, but they always smell a bit Bamboo-ish. They do not smell damp and not well kept, they smell natural.Our roofs are made from grass, so they disintegrate after a time. They are not as waterproof as concrete, or tar roofs. However they are much cooler. and they look much better. Prices on the net should be the same everywhere , but you are best served by making a direct reservation at the hotel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Relax Bay Hotel Ko Lanta
Relax Bay Ko Lanta

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