Robinson Club Khao Lak
10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Great facilities but very shoddy service
"Recently returned from a 6 night stay at the Le Meridien Khoa Lak. The stay was particularly disappointing. I had stayed at this property in October '05 and was very keen to go back. Unfortunately, as with many of the recent reviews, I think the hotel has been let down by chronic understaffing and employing staff with little or no English. We arrived on 28th December to find that the rooms we requested in the Spa wing were not available. Given that I made the reservation in early Jan 2006 I was more than a little irritated that our request had been ignored. To add insult to injury we were then put into no less than three rooms on arrival as each room we entered had a faulty safe. After leaving the pool later that afternoon, I went back to reception to reconfirm my room number as we had moved to many times I couldn't remember which room I was in. After a long walk from reception I arrived at my room only to find the key didn't work. Back to reception, explained the situation, was given another key.....which still did not work. Back to reception again. This time the key worked - only problem was that it wasn't my room. Back to reception again - was told that I was wrong and it was my room, which was a bit odd given my luggage was not in the room, as I had left it. I had to walk down to the room with one of the reception staff to show them that it wasn't all in my head. At this point they agreed that I had been given the key to the wrong room however, at no stage was any apology offered. Just a lot of blank stares and not much else. The food in the Kuk Kak Grill was appalling. I had to send a burger back three times as it came out almost raw. Again the staff just shrugged off the problem. I was turned away from the pool bar on one afternoon and told that they were too busy to serve my lunch and to come back in an hour. Not acceptable for a five star hotel. I shouldn't have had to get out of my chair in the first place. However, the hotel hasn't thought of poolside drinks / food service. There were more problems with service in other areas of the hotel but they are too tedious to detail. At one point I asked to see the general manager and as with other visitors, my request was ignored. Suffice to say that Le Meridien Khao Lak maybe 5 star in facilities but certainly not in service standards. I would suggest looking elsewhere before staying at this hotel. As for Khao Lak itself, it is a great little town with a lot of great restaurants where you can eat well at a very small cost. If you are looking for somewhere quieter than Phuket that this is a great place to go. Just avoid the Le Meridien!"
- Travel date: 10th January 2007
"I think people need to get a grip. Having just come from Raffles in Singapore yes the service at the Meridien was a bit hit and miss...the rush to clear breakfast is a little annoying...but it was always well intentioned. The resort is very attractive with well maintained gardens. The beach is excellent and you can walk for miles in both directions. The quality of the food was good in all the restaurants...not mega...but good enough to eat in every evening without getting bored with the selection. The spa pool was very private . Activities such as yoga, the fitness centre, tennis, watersports were provided free of charge with good quality eqipment. The watersports tuition was perfunctory but the guy who taught the yoga,aerobics etc was excellent depsite his limited English. The room was spacious...although it's worth the little extra for a pool access room to have a little more privacy. It's not the Four Seasons (where I have stayed in Bangkok,Istanbul) but it's not their prices either. Just relax and you'll have a great time."
- Travel date: 10th January 2007
very poor management
"Stayed in the hotel from December 31st for one week. Arrival : At the airport : we had asked to be picked up at the airport : when we arrived, no arrangement had been made. Fortunately, a very efficient lady from Le Meridien Group found us a car in 15 minutes. At the hotel : check-in lasted one hour â there was only one person working at the reception desk. In the room : we had booked a ground floor room, supposedly better than the 2nd and 3rd floor rooms : if the room was OK, it was dark as a pit, plants blocking all sunlight ! the room had a communicating door, so we could hear everything the neighbours were saying. At the beach : at 1 pm, we were told âthe beach is finishedâ ; we soon learnt you had to âblockâ your sun bed at 7 am leaving a book or newspaper on it to be able to get a sun bed !!! Unfortunately, all hotels in the neighbourhood were fully booked, so we could not leave immediately the hotel ; we then asked to change room. The following day, we were given a 3rd floor room ; when we asked about the price (3rd floor rooms are cheaper) we were told we had chosenâ to change room, then no refund could be possible !!! The assistant manager was very rude, almost sneering. New room was OK except sometimes a strange bad smell (sewers ??) Generally : gardens of the hotel are very beautiful, so is the beach. Restaurants are OK, except the beach bar, which is a real catastrophe : bad service, cold food (except ice cream, served lukewarm, which is very questionable for the health)â¦ The general feel is of a hotel destined for families, with very average service for people used to mass holiday charters; we understood why we could find vacancies when we booked at the last minute ! The problem is that Le Meridien is supposed to be a luxury chain, and not the average two stars property. At the end, we booked a beach villa ; beautiful room directly on the beach with private swimming pool, private sun beds. Completely another hotel. Alas, with the same service (please notice very few people from the hotel could speak/understand English). Conclusion : Go there if you can book a beach villa at a cheap price, or go elsewhere ! This is NO luxury hotel, due to inexistent management."
- Travel date: 9th January 2007
Disappointing service levels as short staffed.
"We stayed at Le Meridien early Jan 07. We also spent time at La Flora and Mukdara (both much better value with no complaints). Le Meridien for us was quite disappointing. The resort was full which may explain some of the shortcomings. We felt that the staff were overstretched in the restaurants - they were almost having to run around to service the customers. This was particularly bad at breakfast and the buffet dinner nights. At other resorts the staff/cutomer ratio was much higher. I do get the feeling that they are trying to miminise costs, but at the detriment to the customer. Another compliant is the situation with the adults pool. It is supposed to be for adults only. However on a number of occassions kids used the pool. The staff often asked them to leave and the kids would ignore them. I even had to ask one parent to remove his child - and he ignored me too. There are a lot of kids at this resort and many badly behaved European ones. The rooms were clean, but the days we were there the room was not made up until 5pm each day. If this resort had more staff it would be much better, but in its current state I would not go back here. Our experience could be simply due to the resort being full over the busy Xmas and NY period though. Good points about the hotel: Rooms are spacious and clean. Food is good - particularly at the Baan Thai restaurant - but make sure you ask for a gap between the starter and the mains otherwsie the main will arrive about 5 mins after you have finished the starter. Gym is good."
- Travel date: 7th January 2007
Poor service for a 5 star hotel
"Stayed here with my family over New Year. Worst Starwood property I have stayed at. Good facilities and well maintained but staff speak very little English such that they rarely get a food order right and clearly are unhappy at work. This hotel needs better quality control and involvement from Starwood in terms of staff training if it is to be worthy of a 5 star rating. Simply not the quality of "nothing is too much trouble" service one gets at other 5 star hotels in Asia."
- Travel date: 5th January 2007
Beautiful Setting, Sub par service - NOT 5 star at all
"Fabulous setting and from a quick glance the hotel looks lovely however the hotel struggles...the usual efficient super friendly thai service let down by the fact that only 3 or 4 of the staff seem to have any experience...stayed in the beach front villa with private pool...again superb location, lovely inside but once you left the villa to use the resort it went wrong...building work going on next to the beach bar (which the hotel doesnt mention - appraently as its not their building they dont / cant do anything - tractor will go past your view a few times during the day) Food....for thailand diassappointing - hence the reason most go off to the beach huts 100m west or venture into town.....the Thai restaurant in the hotel is quite nice but as only the manager seems to understand english and know how to serve its hard to replicate service youd expect to receive in a five star property - compared to any of the major hotels in phuket...or samui it falls woefully short....being told by staff that the Chef didnt fancy making a chicken dish because he didnt like the smell ensured we avoided the main poolside restaurant and the poor breakfast selection was also slightly annoying. while I understand Khao Lak was hit hard by the tsuanmi and I have great sympathy with the thai people (i have visited thailand every year at least once in the past 10yrs - staying all over) I feel Le Meridien let us down - they simply should not tout the hotel as 5 star or at least reduce the rates considerably....when I approached management -- who didnt return 2 calls and also cancelled a meeting...they just told me they were aware of the shortcomings and were very sorry - a bit late in my opinion after we had spent a week here....we checked out early after an absolutely awful Kings Birthday dinner....having spent the Queens birthday at the Meridien Bang Taling Ngam we had high hopes ....but no sign of the delicious buffet with all the trimmings in Samui....instead a service dinner...where the courses were cold..the curries devoid of meat / fish...(when advertised as Duck, Chicken etc...).....Tom Yum Goong with no prawns and serving sizes which would not satisfy the most annoerixic of supermodels we called it a day..... while I wish this hotel all the success in the world (as it provides jobs for thais) those looking to go really need to assess their preferance...if you are a 5 star holiday junkie..four seasons, ritz-carlton, shangri-la etc..then AVOID...service will let you donw....indeed if you have stayed at other Starwood properties...Le Meridien in Samui or Phuket or Sheraton Laguna Phuket or the Grande Sukhumvit in Bangkok - youll be let down....the beautiful facede of the hotel wont be able to last more than a few days before the service grips get you.....i could go on and on ( missed 3 wake up calls, pool cleaner just literally picked up a leaf and smiled - pool clean! - err no - no car at airport due to admin error etc etc etc) if however you have a cpl of days or are used to a lower quality of hotel and get a good deal then Im sure youll be fine...but it really isnt 5 star service...and how it just got the best Asian Spa Hotel Award is beyond me.....the spa itself- yes fabulous...amazing spa suits...but Spa Hotel....surely that includes the whole property....sorry .....no way....such a pity....."
- Travel date: 5th January 2007
Le Meridien report
"just back from 2 weeks in Le Meridien and thought i would write a report. First off the hotel itself is top class, the location is amazing on a beautiful beach. Swimming pools enormous , loads of sun loungers . never felt too crowded even over x-mas. Room was fabulous , clean , modern , bottled water replenished every day etc. Other reviews state that it's off the beaten track but surely thats the attraction. If you want lots of bars, nightclubs etc go to Phuket. If you want a truly relaxing holiday go to Khao Lak. Food outlets in hotel were only average , KukKak grill quite poor, breakfast buffet was quite good [although not as good as JW Marriott Phuket, where we came from] Main criticism was the service level at the restaurants , definitely not what you expect in a 5 star hotel, there seemed to be a lack of management . On new years day we tried to eat in Baan Thai @ 7pm and were told it was booked , [even though @ 7pm it was empty] Then we tried Baangsak grill and were told it too was fully booked [again it was empty @ 7pm and there were at least 10 tables around the poolside area which had not been ste up] Kukkak was closed so we decided to return to room and order room service. Placed an order @ 7.20 and was told it would take 30 minutes. At 8pm i called and was told that our food had been delivered but we did not answer the door. I pointed out that we had been there all the time and nobody came to our room. 10 minutes later they arrived , with the wrong order which i duly sent away. At this point I called reception and asked to speak with the manager and informed her of what happened. She said she would call me back in 5 , no call ever came. At 9pm the food arrived and as it had obvioulsy been sitting there for over 90 minutes it was cold . We received no apology , were charged fully and when i queried it at check out the girl merely shrugged her shoulders. I think Meridien is a very good hotel , if they sort out the service and the indiffernt management it could be a great hotel. Some guests we spoke with complanied about the prices in the hotel , but honestly I don't think it was excessive for a 5 star. Granted if you took the shuttle in to Khao Lak you could eat for a fraction. We found Viking restaraunt excellent for steaks etc, JAI for Thai food , and Tarzan bar a good place to have a few beers. We took a day trip to Surin Islands to go snorkelling and it was a highlight of the holiday. The company was called Greenview tours and the whole thing was impeccably run. It was my first time snorkelling , but my wife said the clarity of the water far exceeded anywhere else she had snorkelled. Others agreed and the colours and quantities of fish were truly amazing. I booked this excursion in the hotel, but i believe you can book in one of the many dive shops in town also. Will i go back to Kaho Lak , definitely, will i stay in Le Meridien probably"
- Travel date: 5th January 2007
"My wife and I stayed at the Le Meridien Khao Lak resort for ten nights at the beginning of December 2006 having spent five days in Bangkok (see review of Sofitel Silom Bangkok hotel). We were looking for a relaxing beach holiday but somewhere that offered enough local interest and excursions for days away from the hotel and in our opinion this hotel offered exactly that. We booked a deluxe pool view room with private garden. This was furnished to a very high standard, as was the large bathroom. One thing to note, the rooms are in two wings, the âSpaâ wing and the âFamilyâ wing. Our room was in the Family wing and as we did not travel with children we initially thought this might be a disadvantage. It proved absolutely no problem what so ever, but depending on your requirements you may wish to ask for a room in the appropriate wing. Throughout our stay the standard was everything we would expect from a five star hotel. We ate in the Bangsak Grill and the Baan Thai restaurants. They were both excellent with good food and a lovely setting. Ok, far from cheap by Thai standards but perfectly reasonable for a five star hotel. The Kuk Kak bar was newly opened when we arrived, this is just across the hotel drive from the main reception and something the hotel is trying to promote locally. This is reflected in the prices of the food and drink, which are cheaper than the main hotel restaurants but still of a good standard with a nice lakeside setting. There is live music on most nights, which added to the atmosphere. We also tried room service a couple of nights, which was prompt and to a very good standard. Oh and if you fancy a bargain beer, just stroll to the end of the drive and the nice family in the mini mart will sell you one for 20 Baht! Well isnât that what they give you a mini bar fridge in your room for! Much has been said about the beach so I wont reiterate but it really does give you that feeling of being away from it all and you can happily stroll for a long time either way and see very few people. We used the Asia Trails tour office in the hotel to book our excursions. The lady who helped us out was really helpful and given our desire to go snorkelling recommended a trip to the Surin Islands, all the beauty pf Phang Nga Bay without the tourists, indeed our speed boat was the only one there on the day we visited! I cannot recommend this trip enough if you want to witness the picture postcard images of clear blue see, white sand beaches, tropical fish and excellent coral reefs, superb! We also went white water rafting and elephant trekking in the National Park about an hour or so drive away from the hotel, another unforgettable experience. Finally, a word about this whole language thing, with staff not being able to understand English. Yes there were occasions when we were not understood (but hey, my Thai aint that good!), but there are plenty of good English speaking staff to help out and can be called upon if the situation really does warrant it. Remember what the people in this region and even in this hotel have been through, they are now just getting their lives back together, so not speaking perfect English isnât that big a deal, itâs just remarkable to see where they are two years on. All in all, a great five star hotel in a peaceful location, just what we were after."
- Travel date: 30th December 2006
Very good spa! lovely Beach! Super pool! Good food!
"We had a week at the le meridien in khao lak in december and really were able to relax perfectly! the hotel is a lovely resort for both family and couples. great facilites such as the spa (one of the best we expirienced in Thailand, even if more expensive than on the beach). Pool area and beach area had enough chairs, so no rush at 8am to get a seat. pool is really big and lovely. three different restaurant give you enough choice for food, although the thai restaurant was still the best (baan thai). would recommend it, would go again!"
- Travel date: 29th December 2006
Disappointing - not as good as it used to be
"I previously stayed at Le Meridien in December 2004, in a standard room. At that time, the hotel was peaceful and luxurious. The main restaurant (Cafe Liliwadee) was serving every day an excellent and inexpensive dinner buffet. So was breakfast. I returned to this hotel in December 2006, and booked a Lagoon Villa. I requested in my reservation a quiet villa with privacy. When we arrived, they gave us a villa next to the construction taking place at the moment (they are building a presidential villa, beach massage pavilions and extending the beach cafe), and with a side view on the Thai restaurant's terrace! Exactly the opposite of what I requested. This is even more unacceptable knowing that as a Starwood Gold Preferred guest, I am supposed to get the best room in the category. Could it be because I had a promotional rate? Luckily, I managed to get another villa on the other side of the lagoon. Another failure in the check-in process was that nobody knew that we had stayed there before. You would expect a "welcome back" but nothing, even in the manager's welcome letter. Strange! The lagoon villa was very nice, though in a villa of that size, and of that price (had I not had a promotion), you would expect a bit more decoration, and some flowers. Major disappointment was food: - breakfast was mediocre (scrambled eggs were often too liquid, sometimes turning green; all hot courses prepared in advance were between warm and cold, but never hot; pineapple was tasteless ; bakeries were not fresh...); - though the hotel directory still indicates that Cafe Liliwadee serves buffet diner everyday between 6:30PM and 11PM, this restaurant was closed 2 or 3 days a week, offering buffet only twice a week, and a la carte the other days. Thai & Seafood buffet was expensive (more than 1200++ baths) considering its quality - almost the price of buffet at Peninsula in Bangkok, but not its outstanding quality! - they have a weekly schedule telling you what restaurant is open on what day, as all restaurants close between one to 3 days a week. Not very convenient as housekeeping forgot to put the new schedule in our room on our second week there... - in Kuk-Kak restaurant, food was cheap and bad. They even charged 30 baths the bottles of drinking water that you get in your room for free and whose tag say "Compliments of Le Meridien Kaoh Lak"... However, Thai restaurant was excellent. Deckchairs on the beach are very packed. And many people come early in the morning to reserve the best chairs, and leave a book or a magazine, before coming back a few hours later. Very annoying!! And not the kind of behavior you would expect in a 5 star hotel... Probably a consequence of the huge promotions they were doing! Three days before leaving, we were invited to a cocktail with the hotel management. I wanted to discuss all these problems with them. Unfortunately, the hotel manager and the general manager have been chatting with the same persons all the time, so I have not had a chance to talk to them. However, I chatted with the new Food & Beverage manager, and expressed my disappointment, especially regarding food. She recognized that there were some problems. In the end, she asked for my name and room number, and asked when we were leaving. So I was expecting to get some feedback, but NOTHING AT ALL! This demonstrates (if needed!) that their is a management problem in that hotel! As a conclusion, if you get a good price, Le Meridien might still be an option. But if you are looking for luxury and peacefulness, The Sarojin is probably a better option."
- Travel date: 28th December 2006
Robinson Club Khao Lak is also called
- Le Meridien Khao Lak Beach & Spa Resort
- le meridien khao lak
- meridien khao lak