After weeks in chaotic cities, I badly needed a break—one where, pretentious as it may sound, stay still and reflect. I contacted our friends at Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi, and as soon as they confirmed my reservation, I could already hear the waves calling. Read more…
Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi is hidden in a bay in Ao Nang called Phai Plong, which it shares with no other property. To further add a sense of exclusivity to the place, the resort is only accessible in two ways: through a scheduled complimentary or private speedboat service or by hiking a monkey trail that traverses a lushly green national park.
After taking a 15-minute speedboat from Nopparat Thara Pier, I was instantly in awe by what welcomed me—a grand limestone karst amid turquoise water. But that was just the beginning.
I was led into a grand receiving hall inspired by temples that abound Thailand. By stroke of luck, welcoming me was a hospitable Filipina front staff who sorted my reservation out, gave me a drink and cold towel, and made me immediately feel at home.
A golf cart sent me and my luggage to my Deluxe Garden View room, which afforded me a spectacular panoramic view of the resort and the sea beyond. The room’s description goes:
Open the doors to fabulous comfort when staying in one of our Deluxe Garden View rooms, each with a light décor with use of dark woods throughout the 72 square meters of living area. The gardens form the backdrop for your furnished balcony, and the rooms offer the option of a king-sized bed or two double beds for the comfort of families of up to 3 adults or 2 adults and 3 children. Each Deluxe Garden View room has an airy bathroom with both bathtub and shower. In-room amenities include flat screen TV, telephone, individually controlled air-conditioning, ceiling fans, tea and coffee making facilities, in-room safe, and a hairdryer.
And their description above does not overpromise. It was a gorgeous room, perfect for people who like me are constantly looking for a recluse, a break from the maddening city. And well, for me, it was comforting that it had features and amenities expected of a five-star resort.
I spent most of my three days in the resort simply laying by the 500-meter beach, soaking the view in, watching the sunset, or dipping in their huge swimming pool—bumming around, in short. After all, I just came in from quite a long trip from halfway across the world.
But that doesn’t mean there isn’t much to do there—it has a dive center, the famous Spa Cenvaree, a fitness center, a club lounge, a kids’ club, and even a library. Watersports like canoeing and paddle boarding can be availed free of charge for the first hour, and the resort can arrange boat tours and short excursions to Ao Nang, elsewhere in Krabi, and the islands beyond.
Part of the hotel’s five restaurants and bars is Lotus Court Restaurant, which offers a sumptuous and sizable array of Western, Asian, and Thai breakfast fare. My favorite portion of it is outdoors, by a lovely pond and fountain.
To sum, Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi thankfully provides this sense of being away—especially from the throngs of tourists in the area. And with its five-star rooms, facilities, and service, it’s the ideal escape, the perfect hidden sanctuary in Krabi.
CENTARA GRAND BEACH RESORT & VILLAS KRABI
Ao Nang, Amphur Muang, Krabi, Thailand
Telephone: +66 0 7563 7789
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