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“Lovely colonial style hotel with very central location”

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Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hua Hin
Ranked #4 of 144 Hotels in Hua Hin
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 3 February 2013

We stayed as a couple for a week in January. Lovely hotel, beautiful old-school colonial style, directly on the beach. Beautiful gardens. Old hotel with upgrades needed in some rooms (new toilet seat would have been lovely - when they go from white to yellow, it's time to change them...) The location is very central with many restaurants, bars, massage places and shops within walking distance. Breakfast was excellent, and there is a great afternoon tea. Value for money not great by thai standards, but unique setting and good service. We would go back, and would also recommend the hotel to friends and family.

A few things would have been nice to know:
- there are hardly any young people in the resort. That was fine with us (both in our 30s) since we were looking for peace and quiet, and there are more lively places within 2min walk
- we chose the hotel for its proximity to the beach but mostly used the pool
- the free wifi has limited coverage (lobby only), and we had regular freeze/break-downs our stay. When you use the internet for mails, tripadvisor etc - that can be annoying. Staff in reception was helpful, but by the time we got around to complaining, we were very much annoyed
- price level for massage, food, transfer to/from bangkok is much cheaper outside the resort. But more luxurious on site for sure!
- mosquitos are everywhere (get a spray asap, the staff won't tell you there are mosquitos!). We have 30+ bites from the first night to prove it :-)
- the occasional cockroach can be found in the hotelroom despite daily afternoon cleaning and turn-down service. We had two separate instances with one cockroach each. In our home country, this would probably close down the hotel, but the reception sends someone to help out, and it was taken care of within 5min. They didn't seem surprised or apologetic, so it must be common

We would have gladely provided the feedback directly during our stay or when checking out, but were never asked. Maybe a suggestion for management?

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Christian G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 2 February 2013

We stayed for a week in Jan 13 and loved it, the beautiful colonial atmosphere, amazing gardens and fantastic pools added to our experience. It's right in the centre of Hua Hin and in front of the best part of the beach. However, you don't go to Hua Hin for the beach or the sea, coming from Australia we are total beach snobs so I found the water very murky and the smell of horse poo from the many horses offering rides up and down the beach was a bit off-putting. The beach was great for early morning walks but the fabulous pools at the Centara more than made up for the lack of beach action!

We upgraded to club and I reckon it was worth it - we made great use of the evening cocktails every night but didn't eat breakfast there as the amazing spread of the Railway restaurant couldn't be beaten! We had a lovely big room on the 3rd floor with a huge balcony right over the reception area looking out to the sea and gorgeous gardens - who knew you could create so many wonderful topiary shapes!

We did a lot of sightseeing in Hua Hin, under no circumstances should you make a trip to the "floating" markets - they are way out of town and a complete disappointment - nothing floats - it's just a smelly lake with a bunch of awful touristy shops around it. We went to the Cicada night market which was great - it's on a Friday/Sat/Sun night a little bit out of town. I did the hotel cycle ride up to the monkey temple, I wouldn't recommend that either as most of the cycling is on a 6 lane highway (very scary!). We had lots of massages and pedicure/manicures in the local area and had some wonderful meals at the local restaurants.

We only ate dinner at the hotel once which was fantastic but expensive - there was just too much choice outside. All the staff were super friendly and helpful and we enjoyed chatting to the lovely girls that work in the Club section. The only bad thing was that my daughter got told off for jumping into the pool (but that's a good thing for the rest of the guests!!). The clientele seemed to be pretty old - not many families but that could have been the time of year that we travelled. I would definitely stay here again - highly recommended and by FAR the best place in Hua Hin, I wouldn't even look at anywhere else!

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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6  Thank Sarah453
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 January 2013

This is a nice luxury hotel in an excellent position in Hua Hin let down by our check in experience and room issue.

Our family of four arrived on NY Eve around midday and slightly earlier than the usual check in time having transferred from Bangkok a three hour drive away. We were met with nice cold drinks in Elephant glasses (a nice touch) and were told that one of our two rooms would be available soon.
Around 45 minutes later one room was ready and soon after this our 2nd room was ready which as requested was adjoining but to our dismay the booked and paid for Twin Room was actually a 2nd Double rather than a Twin as booked. On returning to reception to sort this out we were told by reception that no other rooms were available and that whilst we could moved to a connecting room rather than adjoining it would still be in 2 double beds. Again very disappointing and not what we had actually booked. The lady on the desk confirmed we had booked a twin room but said that the best they could do was to offer us single duvets for our teenagers which we had no choice but to accept. I wonder what the hotel would have done had it been two elderly gentlemen checking into a twin room rather than 11 & 15 year old children! Would they have offered the same solution? I doubt it. Very disapointing!

The Superior rooms we were allocated were on the on the 2nd floor overlooking the fountain and one was a corner room which was nice, although it was a little cramped and probably the smallest room we have ever stayed in for a hotel of this calibre. We initially had to move the bed to fully open the wardrobe door. The air con worked well and bathroom had all the usual things you would expect.

Internet is not free in the room (but is free in the lobby) but due to our room issues we were given it free. The Gala Dinner was good, what we could see of the entertainment was good and other than our children being served Vodka & Bacardi !!! in their “soft” drinks which we had to return to the bar manager it was a good evening.

Breakfasts at the hotel are extensive and excellent quality, the pools are also lovely and were practically deserted, however the pool cocktails were weak and watery and not worth the money even in happy hour which was 4-6pm daily. The beach outside is OK but a bit littered and there are lots of hawkers. However, there are some great places for lunch if you walk out onto the beach and turn right. Lunch at the hotel (pool service) was also nice. It was very busy on the beach because it was Thai holiday season too. The staff at this hotel are all very friendly and attentive and you do feel that you are staying in a luxury hotel. Shame about the room cock up as this would have made it 5 instead of 4. Would we stay there again? Probably but would double check our room bookings first.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank FOXYSKI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2013

We have been in the Centara hotel for many years, Its getting better every year, the service is exellent, the hotel staff is very kind, the gardens are very romantic, and the views from the rooms are beautiful.the hotel has three lovely swimmingpools, very clean, enough sunbeds for every guest, and a very attentive staff. The breakfast is not to be believed, the very best we have ever experienced. The rooms are kept very clean, and the housekeeping crew is very helpfull.
The hotel serves a super great high tea, every friday, saturday and sunday, which is really the best you will ever enjoy,
The hotel lies in walking distance to the village, and the beach is at the other side of the hotel,
We also noticed that they were especially kind to elderly people who needed some more attention.
We think this is one of the best choices to treat youself to a wonderful holiday in a very romantic setting.

kind greetings,

Rob en Ineke
Netherlands

Room Tip: we think most rooms are very good, the garden views or the sea views
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank rob v
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Qmgr, Manager at Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hua Hin, responded to this reviewResponded 18 February 2013

Dear rob v,

We are very happy to note that as one of our valued returning guest you have enjoyed our service and facilities during your most recent stay with us and we will share your comments with our team.

Thank you once again for the wonderful review of our resort and we sincerely look forwards to being able to welcome you back to our resort in the future.

Sincerely yours,
The Management

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 January 2013

After almost a decade of wonderful annual visits to Centara Hua Hin (until recently Sofitel Centara ), we reckon most of the positive Tripadvisor reviews on this Hotel are spot on - it is a spectacular yet private luxury resort with the convenience of walking straight out into the busy streets of this seaside town. Our children are huge fans of the Hotel and its fantastic location. Its their place to unwind. Swimming, kids club, markets and restaurants - we're spoilt for choice. Particularly love the many over water seafood venues close by. So back we come year after year. However. In the almost ten years we've been coming here there is a consistent problem with bookings. At every other hotel we stay at we can book a room in a certain category and upon arrival by and large we get what we booked. Not so at Centara Hua Hin. Each year we book a room in the Colonial Wing, they're fantastic rooms with a great outlook over the sea. On most occasions when we arrive there are problems actually getting what we reserved. Under the former managers, Sofitel Centara, the issue was usually resolved with smiling faces all around - they made an effort. This time, under Centara, it was the usual problem with the room, but there was little effort to resolve the problem. We had several meetings with various managers, and eventually had two meetings with the GM - hardly the stuff you go away on holidays to do. We were offered a room in another part of the hotel, not the room we had booked. We were told by the GM he could do no more as the Colonial Wing was booked out. He refused further assistance as we had booked under their Platinum Loyalty Card rate, which provided us with a discount - seemed loyalty was now out the window. His response, and lack of willingness to assist seemed an odd approach from a manager more intent following corporate guidelines than assisting with problems caused by the hotel - and who wants these dramas when you go on a holiday. Despite this being a truly great place, consistent problems with simple booking requests and a management leader that showed little regard for resolving problems caused by the hotel, and the constant misrepresentations made by the hotel, mean, that until there is a change of policy we will book elsewhere - and that's quite disappointing as we were happy campers up until this trip.

Room Tip: Problematic booking process. Colonial Wing offers the best rooms at the hotel.
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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8  Thank archter2f
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Qmgr, Manager at Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hua Hin, responded to this reviewResponded 26 January 2013

Dear archter2f,

Thank you for taking the time to give us feed back about your recent stay at Centara Grand Beach Resort Hua Hin. Guest feed back is invaluable to rectify mishaps and wrong doing and we are always grateful to learn more about your experience.

In this particular instance, however, we need to state clearly the facts. It is the hotel policy to honour the type of room reserved and, when not possible, to offer a complimentary room upgrade.

In this particular instance, the room type booked was respected. One deluxe room was reserved and was given in the appropriate wing. Very unfortunately, a family of four cannot be accommodated comfortably in a Deluxe room, designed in most cases for 2 adults and possibly one child, but not two children.

Therefore the hotel offered a complimentary upgrade from a deluxe room to a Junior Suite in the original Railway wing of the hotel.

Reference is made to the “Platinum Loyalty Card”, part of the former ACCOR loyalty programme. Even though the hotel left the Sofitel network one year ago, a 10 % discount was offered freely.

We believe therefore that this comment is blatantly distorted and would like to stress that Centara Grand Hua Hin did try to accommodate this family in the best way possible. The booking was more than honoured, an upgrade given with a discount but said upgrade could, unfortunately, not be given in the desired wing due to high occupancy..

Again we appreciate valuable comments and thank our guests for their feed back, providing it is true and honest.

Yours sincerely,
The Management

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Additional Information about Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hua Hin

Address: 1 Damnernkasem Road, Hua Hin 77110, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Prachuap Khiri Khan Province > Hua Hin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Hua Hin
#1 Business Hotel in Hua Hin
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Hua Hin
#3 Romantic Hotel in Hua Hin
#3 Spa Hotel in Hua Hin
#4 Luxury Hotel in Hua Hin
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Hua Hin
Price Range: €118 - €336 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hua Hin 5*
Number of rooms: 249
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hua Hin first opened its doors in the early 1920s at a time when Hua Hin was still a sleepy coastal village. This five-star beachfront resort was built along the classic lines of that era, with phenomenal gardens and beautifully spacious rooms and suites (up to 170 square metres) with high ceilings, polished hardwood flooring, period furniture, and the warm tones of Thai silk. The resort is also home to 42 single-storey villas that offer privacy and space (up to 120 square metres) and the choice of a Jacuzzi or plunge pool on the terrace. Beside Hua Hin’s gorgeous beach, a stone’s throw away, and a relaxed atmosphere to enjoy to the full, the resort also offers plenty of leisure options for adults and children: four swimming pools and children’s pools, a superb spa, a fitness centre, tennis courts, Muay Thai and Tai Chi classes, and two kids clubs. Plus, the town is outside our door, and some of the best golf courses in Thailand are within easy travelling distance. The dining venues include a colonial style café and all-day dining restaurant, a Japanese restaurant, a Thai restaurant located near the villas, and the modern COAST Beach Club & Bistro. With its setting on the beach and its elegant atmosphere, the resort also is the perfect setting for a dream wedding. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hua Hin Hotel Hua Hin
Centara Grand Beach Resort And Villas Hua Hin
Sofitel Hua Hin
Accor Hua Hin
Hua Hin Sofitel

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