Lanta Cottage Hotel review

Accommodation: Lanta Cottage Hotel

It is located at Sala Dan, Ko Lanta District, Krabi 81150 Thailand. We had our first getaway here after the travel ban was lifted. Businesses had just started to open, and the entire place felt like it had just woke up from a keep slumber. Going into Lanta Cottage, you’ll see untrimmed plants, dried leaves all over the place, padlocked sheds, and dusty receiving/canteen area.

Room

Nothing fancy about the room, it’s air conditioned and pretty spacious. There’s a mini kitchenette with sink. Plates and utensils are also provided. It’s a family room with one double bed and a bunk bed. Both are pretty hard on the back. But at least they’re not rickety. Please take a look at Lanta Cottage in the video at 4.25.

  • Other room amenities include a flat screen TV, a fridge, a wooden wardrobe, and towels.
  • Complimentaries are the usual coffee and tea, bottled water, and toiletries.

Bathroom

I’m personally not so fond of the bathroom. It is large but the design is not so well-thought of. The toilet is placed very near the wall that you won’t be able to sit well. The bidette spray is placed at the left side of the toilet cramped up in between the toilet and the wall. It’s just way too uncomfortable. It’s not so clean too.

WIFI Connection

Wifi connection is important these days more than ever. Due to the pandemic, several jobs have transitioned online. And we are one of them. However, to our great dismay, this hotel’s Wifi connection had been severed by the provider. We didn’t want to complain thinking it might be an aftermath of the lockdown.

The Pool

Pool is life for our children. They love to hang out by the pool, and have been trying to learn swimming. This hotel’s pool is one of its strength. Kid’s pool is 2.5ft deep, pretty safe even for toddlers. Adult’s pool is 4.5ft deep. Although, not so clean, but we’ve seen worst than it.

Breakfast

Lanta cottage has restaurant area, but didn’t offer breakfast during this time. So we ended up eating in a restaurant overlooking the Bamboo beach.

Parking Lot

There was no designated parking area. Cars can be parked on any vacant lot any where around the hotel area.

Clientele

Lanta Cottage may be preferred by families or group of friends who prefer to cook or bring their own food. And it could also be a nice choice those who opt for a budget-friendly accomodation.

Price

We booked Lanta Cottage for a little over 60USD, definitely cheap. If you don’t mind a few inconveniences here and there, then, it’s a good choice.

Although it wasn’t what I expected, we were just thankful to be out of the house and enjoy the outdoor. We hope Lanta Cottage can bounced back to its feet.

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kids on a bunk bed

Ibis Styles Krabi Ao Nang: Hotel Review

Accommodation: Ibis Styles Krabi Ao Nang, a family and pet friendly modern hotel, is conveniently located at 725 Moo2 Ao-nang, Nopparat Road Muang Krabi, 81000 Ao Nang Beach, Thailand (725 หมู่ 2 ถ.นพรัตน์ เมือง กระบี่ (หาดอ่าวนาง, 81000)– and can be reached at +66 75 626 388

This is our second after-covid-19 staycation and boy did we get the best bang for our buck!

Hotel room

          We stayed in a family room with a great view of the mountain and vegetataion below (watch the video to see how lovely it is). Definitely not the largest room we’ve stayed in so far but it is well designed that it doesn’t feel cramped up. The double bed and bunk bed for our kids were soft and relaxing. We slept like a baby.

  • Amenities: It has the usual amenities like flat screen TV, fridge, air conditioner, towels, and hairdryer.
  • Additional amenities: Since it is a family room, it has an X-box console for the kiddos and kiddos-at-heart. Also, it has an intercom if you need assistance and whatnot.
  • Complimentaries include coffee and tea, bottled water, and toiletries.
  • Bathroom: I personally love it. It is dainty, functional, and squeaky clean. There wasn’t any cringy smudges and mildews. Towels are neatly folded on the towel rack. And the wall-mounted mirror adds charm to its entirety.

Overall, the room was lovely, comfortable, and smells great!

WIFI Connection

The hotel had a strong WIFI connection. It was very important during that time as there were things we need to care of online. The hotel did not fail us. No hiccups logging in. And we stayed connected everywhere we went around the hotel even in the pool area.

The Pool

One of the things we look for in booking a hotel is the swimming pool. We’re not great swimmers. But we love hanging out by the pool, especially that Derick and Summer have been self-learning how to swim. The pool in this hotel is the best we have ever been in so far. It’s big, super clean, and certainly well-maintained. The kid’s pool is 0.6 meters deep, safe for toddlers. Adult’s pool measures 1.4 meters deep all throughout, which we think is safer for young children, and those who are not good swimmers.

Derick and Summer had an awesome time, and eventually were able to learn to swim. Yehey!!!

Breakfast

We always opt out breakfast in our bookings. We had a bad experience with another hotel regarding this. However, “The Cliff” restaurant, aesthetically, looked inviting in the first place. Plus, we were informed that the kids will be charged half the price only. Wonderful!! So, we had our breakfast at the hotel during our entire stay. To see the food choices please watch the video.

Parking Lot

Driving is our thing, and so parking is essential for us. The hotel parking is located inside the hotel area, not by the road side. There are designated parking for cars and motorbikes. You can rest well at night knowing your car is safe and secure.

Clientele

Ibis Styles may be a great choice for families, group of friends, couples, and oh pet owners. Great stopover for roadtrips and family staycations.

Hospitality

Another strong point of this hotel lies on the people who, apart from their usual job, go the extra mile to assist and make guests comfortable. They’re accommodating but not in a nosy and instrusive way.

Price

We booked Ibis Styles Krabi for three nights for a little over 150USD. Considering how well-maintained the whole hotel is, and how nice everything is, we definitely got a great value for our money.

Do we recommend this hotel? CERTAINLY!

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United Residence Serviced Apartments

United Residence Serviced Apartments

Accommodation: United Residence Serviced Apartments

Location: 414 Sukhumvit Soi 63 (Ekamai 26), Sukhumvit Road, Bangkok 10110

Telephone: 02 711 5010

United Residence Serviced Apartments

Bangkok, Thailand

www.UnitedResidence.com

Room

We stayed at room 83, on the eighth floor of the building. This super clean, non -smoking room is good for 2-3 occupants, the third being a child younger than 12. It has the usual amenities you’d find in other hotels but what sets this apartment apart from other below 100USD accommodations is the fully-functioning mini kitchen. It has a two-door fridge, a microwave, and a front-open washing machine.

It is also equipped with the following:

  • Coffee and coffee maker
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Cupboards
  • Flat-screen TV with English channels
  • Wall-sized mirror
  • Built-in wardrobe
  • Mini terrace with clothes rack
  • Intercom
  • Towels
  • Toiletries
  • Hairdryer
  • Mini safe
  • Drawers

Bathroom

It is a OK. It’s super clean and comfortable. There’s warm water in both shower and tap. I, personally felt at home immediately using the bathroom. There are no weird stains on the walls and especially no mildew. The drain system is good, so water doesn’t pool around the toilet area unlike Ibis Phuket Patong Hotel.

WIFI

It is fast. Fast enough to stream videos from Youtube and other websites. There weren’t any hiccups logging in.

Parking

It is private and gated. So you could sleep sound in the evening knowing your car is safe in the garage.

Staff

They are friendly and speak English. They are quick to respond when we can’t get the washing machine to work.

Price

We stayed for two nights and paid 66 USD. If this isn’t a great deal, I don’t know what is then.

Overall

We love the room, the staff, and the location. We definitely recommend this.

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Neca Reiche: Hotel Review

Accomodation: Neca Reiche

Location: 736/2 Poonnakan Rd, ตำบลคอหงส์ Amphoe Hat Yai, Chang Wat Songkhla Thailand 90110

The Room (Standard II, L705):

At first glance this hotel room is the most modern we have ever seen. The concept is just state of the art. The way they made use of the space is so ingenious. The wall that separates the entrance and the bathroom hides the ref together with the closet and a tiny safety box. The closet can be accessed both from the outside and from the bathroom. A sliding door with a full body mirror camouflages this part. Next to it is the sliding door for the bathroom which is a translucent glass. You got to be very careful though as one can easily get their hands pinched by the alternating sliding doors.

The room smells like heaven. They have these perfumed, dried flowers that make the room smell so fresh. It’s the first thing that greets you the moment you open your room.

The room size will not blow you away but it is big enough to be comfortable. A queen size bed is nestled in the middle and a sofa bed tucked in the end of the room. There’s enough walking space in-between furniture but that’s it. You’d be risking stubbing your toe if you are not careful though.

The place is definitely clean, although we are not fond of black tiles for the floor (bathroom) as they never look/feel clean, they are very particular with cleanliness. The nooks and crannies even under the bed was vacuumed.

The room is aesthetically pleasing to the eye. It’s a well thought of design and arrangement. Even the small details like paintings/photo on the wall, the hanging lampshade on each sides of the bed, even the TV rack is pleasing.

The only flaw we saw, which basically ruined it all for us was the bathroom. I guess being aesthetic does not always equate to functionality. We were not able to fully enjoy the bathtub or even just our bath for fear of flooding. If one is not careful, water could easily and we mean easily flood the room. The bathtub is located next to the bathroom door and the bathroom-floor and the room-floor are level. Well, we have seen modern bathrooms like these but I guess the basics of slightly angling the floor towards the drain should still be observed. Instead the water flows outside of the bathroom. It really freaked us out when we saw water going out of the bathroom while using the bath. We literally had to towel the floor down and squeeze the towel in the sink.

Ant problems also put us off. I woke up with ant bites and they were all over the floor the next morning. As a plush hotel in downtown Hatyai this should not have not been an issue but it is.

Now this is just based on the room we stayed in.

This video was taken at Neca Reiche Hotel.

Sockets:

At this modern age of gadgetry we have made electric sockets our best friend. And having plenty of them in a hotel room is a necessity. We always bring a ton of gadgets with us and re-charge all of them in the evening and we were not disappointed. Sockets were aplenty

Wifi:

Another downside of this hotel is their WIFI connectivity or the lack of it. We were not able to connect at all during our stay. We called the front desk for assistance thinking we may have made a mistake in connecting and someone did come to our AID to help us connect but still no connection at all. For us it was fine since we do have internet in our mobile devices because we live here in Thailand but if you are a tourist on a tourist SIM card you might really really want a hotel wifi connection and this will be outrageous and disappointmenting.

Amenities:

They have got the usual complimentary bottled water, towels, toiletries, shower caps, flat-screen TV, fridge, electric kettle, and hairdryer.

Pool:

They have a pool located on the 6th floor of the building. The pool is tiny. You’d have to literally wait for your turn to get into it. They do not have a kiddie pool so kids shorter than 4 feet will need a flotation device. The tiles are dark blue almost black so we could not be sure if the water was clean. We did not take a dip.

Food:

The food was the saving grace of this hotel. They were generous of the food. They served ham and eggs, fried rice, fruits and vegetables, complementary drinks, salad dressings, soup, porridge, bread, and a lot of condiments. They replenished the food the moment they see it’s running low. We have seen stingy hotel restaurants who would not refill the serving plates right away to discourage clients from having seconds.

Staff:

The hotel staffs were friendly and courteous. They could speak decent English so communication is not a problem at all.

Clientele

Neca Reiche hotel is a good place to stay if you plan to go around Hatyai City. It is famous among Malaysians, Singaporeans, Expats, and local tourists.

Overall

At 49.90 USD/per night for a family of four in a Standard II room, I think it is a good deal. Overall, in terms of aesthetic, cleanliness, and location, this hotel is great. And the whole experience which could have been even greater if not because of the bathroom and WIFI connection. If Neca Reiche addresses these, then I would say it is the total package but until then, I would not return.

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Hotel Review: Golden House Prathum Wan Bangkok

Accomodation: Golden House

One of the many accomodations in Prathu nam Bangkok district, but one of the few affordable ones.

Location: 1025/5-9 Ploenchit Road, Lumpinee, Pathum Wan, Bangkok

Website: http://www.goldenhousebangkok.com/

Telephone No: Tel : +662 252 9535 (36, 37)

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/goldenhousebkk

Golden Houses’s location is probably the best feature of this accommodation.  It is right at the heart of everything. It is only a walk away from the most interesting places in the area like Lumphini Park, National Stadium, and major shopping centers such as Siam Paragon and Central World, and Gaysorn Plaza.  It’s also a stone-throw away from budget places we all love to go like Platinum Fashion Mall, Prathunam Plaza and  Mahboonkrong (MBK) Shopping Center. Also it is surrounded by some of the posh hotels in Thailand and those commonly used for conferences and other business related travel. Also it’s a minute walk from BTS Chidlom station.

Hallway

Room

The room we stayed in has two single beds with a tiny table in between, and a narrow space at each sides and in front. A big flat screen TV is placed right in front of the beds that plays local programs only. Adjacent to this,  towards the door is a dresser/table with a large wall mirror and where the usual compliments (small bottled water and coffee) and amenities such as hairdryer, electric kettle are placed. A personal fridge is also available. Directly in front is the bathroom. Oh it’s important to note too that  the room has no closet of any sort, although it has two wall clothes hooks.

Bathroom: Strange

It is big and clean with towel holders which I find convenient. Strangely though, the bathroom wall and door are made of stained glass, which do not hide much of whatever your doing there. To some degree, it can be romantic, but nevertheless, everyone wants privacy when doing toilet business, right?

WiFi: Good

The internet connection is good quite similar to Hatzanda in Koh Lanta, Nadivana Serviced Apartments in Ao Nang Krabi, and The Lake House Ko Yo in Songkhla. I was able to blog,  stream a movie,  watch videos in Youtube, and face time with my family.

Price 
We stayed for three nights at $40/night without breakfast.

Client: Mixed

Their clienteles come from all walks of life. Travelers both young and old whether on a holiday or work/business related travel flock the place.

Over-all
Aesthetic wise, the room we stayed in is moderate, and pretty small,  yet,  if I happen to be in this part of Bangkok again I would certainly stay in Golden House. The price may be high for the kind of room and services offered but because of its auspicious location,  it’s worth it!

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Lanta Riviera Villa Resort Review: Koh Lanta Krabi

Lanta Riviera Villa Resort is a mix-bag of extreme positive and negative points.

We found this resort just a week before the Songkran festival here in Thailand. Every experienced traveler knows that this would spell high prices for every tourist destinations around here. Koh Lanta is no exception as this is one of the most sought out places by tourists during the summer.

Lanta Riviera Villa Resort as advertised online caught our attention as it was one of the cheapest family friendly resort. We booked through Booking.com.

Here are the reasons why we booked it.

The price: The family bungalow cost us a little over 4,000.00 THB which is approximately a bit over 133 USD for three nights during the peak season. This is definitely a great deal.
Family-friendly: Kids as they are, are synonymous to shouting, shrieking, jumping, crying, and boisterous laughs. And we have got two active, super excited kids who could not contain their emotions despite being told to do so and we don’t want to overdo the scolding and rule implementations as it might spoil their holiday but as much as we have all the rights to be there, we also want to be considerate with the other guests. So detached accommodations like bungalows are really suitable.
Kid’s pool:   For our kids a holiday is not a holiday without a pool.  So it is a must.
Bunk bed:   This was a special request from our kids. It has been their long time wish to have a bunk bed or at least to experience sleeping on one (blame it on Peppa Pig) and luckily, Lanta Riviera Villa Resort has it.

 

 
 
 
 
 
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So how was it?

The bungalow is great. It is big enough that it does not feel like you are all cramped inside. As a matter of fact, even with a queen-sized bed, a bunk bed and a big couch, it is still spacious.  It was clean. There were no dust and or dirt under the furniture.  The bathroom was clean and is fairly spacious. All amenities that come with it like the fridge, kettle, flat-screen TV, Wi-Fi, hairdryer, and air-con all work perfectly. There are the usual freebies like coffee, 4 bottles of water, and toiletries. It has a veranda and a garden in front with plants that give the bungalow a private feel to it.

Did I mention they have Free Wi-Fi? Oh I’d like to emphasize that their internet services is by far the best among all the hotels we have had the experience of staying. Even the pricier ones can’t hold a candle to this resort in terms of internet services. All three gadgets we brought along logged in without any hitch and the internet speed felt premium.

Parking: There is an open space for parking right in front of the property. Even though it’s unguarded it felt safe as the Information’s office is right beside it and open 24 hours a day. There are no proper parking demarcations so cars are parked however people preferred it.  So it was quite messy. And if you are a bit fuzzy about your fancy car it might be a deal breaker for you since it is a bit muddy when the parking area is wet or very dusty when dry.

The kid’s pool is neither big nor tiny.  Our kids had a great time hanging around there. It has a heater, which is really great, so the water is warm which is ideal especially for kids during an evening swim and it’s something we think every pool must have

But of course nothing is ever perfect and so is this resort… which brings me to its possible deal breaker down sides.

The bungalow was very clean as we have mentioned but it however had a faint cigarette smoke odor when we went inside which means that they allow smoking in their bungalows.  We find this very disappointing. They should have a smoking and a non-smoking bungalow as non-smokers would be pretty sensitive to this odor.

The pool is not well maintained as evident by the somewhat murky look of the water. Rules and guidelines for pool use are not enforced.

Getting to the resort was like finding Nemo. Looking for it was just utterly frustrating to the point of disgust. For one the address provided in the website is incorrect, the GPS took us in the middle of the forest, and this is like quite a few kilometers away from where it actually is.  Second, there is not a tiniest signage of some sort visible from the roadside. An hour later after driving back and forth and after asking for directions from people who were also a bit confused as there is another resort with a similar name, one directed us here (see photo please).

Yes, that’s right.  It does not say Lanta Riviera Villa Resort. But right into the alley you will see the resort’s name under another hotel’s name (see photo, in red ink). We later found out that Lanta Riviera Villa Resort is under the management of Hatzanda Lanta Resort. And the name visible on the roadside is Hatzanda (HZD) Lanta Resort. This inconsistency however is not mentioned on their website. Not a slightest hint at all.

If Lanta Riviera Villa Resort is your next travel accommodation, ask the driver to drop you off at Hatzanda Lanta Resort.  If you are driving, type in your GPS: Hatzanda Lanta Resort.

Overall…

Lanta Riviera Villa Resort is a great place for a staycation whether with your family, friends, or by yourself. The villas are in secluded places surrounded by vegetation giving you the privacy you need.  Plus, affordable Thai-Malaysian Eateries and a Seven Eleven are just around the block.
If you can take all the downsides with a smile and if it is not a deal breaker for you Lanta Riviera Villa Resort is a great place to stay.

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