Before our snorkeling trip to Ao Nang in December we did a lot of internet searching for luxury hotels that would give good value for the money. We wanted to stay a few days in Phi Phi islands, enjoying the sea, nature, and good food.
We thoroughly enjoyed our five days in Zeavola. The hotel fulfilled our expectations. Pay attention, this is not a traditional luxury place like in the cities. We would have rated the hotel about 4.5 stars, not 5 though. The location, service and breakfast was 5-star, rooms 4, dinners 3.
The location on a beautiful beach was perfect. You should expect company walking on the beach, as some other hotels are just nearby. The hotel staff was attentative, e.g. the beach bean bags (no chairs allowed) were reserved for hotel guests only.
This is a jungle resort, so that is exactly what we got. The living area was actually out on a terrace, with only the bedroom inside. We found the outside jungle room charming, even though we were a bit surprised in the beginning. Just there was not as much privacy as you might expect of a 5 star nature hotel. We needed to put down the terrace bamboo curtains. They were easily operated by electricity. (I forgot, though, remember in which order to leave the room for dinner. When turning off the lights also electricity was turned off, and we could not get the curtains up before turning the lights on again. We learned quickly.) You should also expect some mosquitos after sunshine. We were bitten despite of protective measures - the terrace was, after all, outside. Not nice, but ther is no jungle without mosquitos and other injects. The toilet was inside and well taken care of; I never saw or heard a mosquito there. The outside shower was a lush experience.
The breakfast was superbly delicious with a lot of variety for different tastes. We loved the outdoors feeling of a jungle restaurant with no walls. There was an abundant selection of warm foods made to order. They would try fullfilling any other wishes outside the ready made menus. Not all Thai-people spoke perfect English. They were so profoundly friendly with an impeccable service attitude that it more than compensated for not-perfect language skills.
We missed an evening buffet as we didn´t understand they were not offered every evening. We enjoyed the nearby simple Seagypsy Jasmin restaurant, where the tasty Thai food was moderately priced. We also joined the nearby Holiday Inn hotel for some buffet dinner, and found that to our liking. If you expect Michelin star food just about anywhere in Ao Nang or Phi Phi islands, you will be disappointed. The food in the hotels was quite overpriced, only second to overpricing the wines. We found traditional Thai style food to be the best choice in the country. We liked the glass bottled soda water (red and white elephant pictures in the bottles) or bear.
Being this frank about items possibly considered as downsides in Zeavola, we really enjoyed our vacation there. You might say these are features, not defects (except for the overpriced food/wines)... We did a lot of snorkeling, rented long tail boats from the beach Gypsies (safe in our experience) and a private motor boat (from Zeavola) with a driver for a trip around the two islands. You need a boat for snorkeling to see the corals/fish, the white sandy beach is simply for swimming. For us this was the best outdoor activity in this marvellous natural paradise.
We chose the Ao Nang Princess boat from Ao Nang to Phi Phi with a one way cost of some 400 TBH per person. I should have had a cardigan or a very warm pashmina, as the air conditioning inside was freezing cold. I also missed some nice book or my own refreshments for the 1,5 - 2 hour trip, even if the sea was beautiful to look at. This was the least luxury thing on our Phi Phi Island trip. After that we much liked the way Zeavola arranged our trip from harbour to the resort with their long tail boat. We needed to take off our shoes when getting in the boat, and we pretty much did not need them in Zeavola anyways. Highly recommended!
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- Also Known As:
- Zeavola Hotel Ko Phi Phi Don
- Zeavola Hotel Krabi
- Zeavola Resort Krabi