on February 28, 2007
Located at the North end of the island, this hotel is very isolated. There are no restaurants or tourist sites within a 30 minutes drive. The hotel is beautiful and the service is fantastic. The lobby is decorated in a grandiose Thai manner. It has a view of the reflecting pool with the ocean in the background and overlooks the Lotus pond and main swimming pool below. Every night, musicians play on an underwater platform in the middle of the reflecting pool while a dancer twirls around them with batons aflame. Our room was very nicely decorated. The king sized bed was decorated with rose petals. The bathtub had petals and blooms floating in it. There was a separate shower in the bathroom. There was a small nook called a sala with cushions by the window, and a very small balcony overlooking the South pool. All the restaurants were very good but quite expensive. We preferred the smaller (and considerably cheaper) breakfast buffet of the Siam Deli than the main restaurant, Marriott Café. The Marriott Café has a large dinner buffet with international cuisine. We enjoyed it but didn’t think it was a very good value. La Cuchina, the Italian restaurant, required reservations and was very fancy. The food was superb and the service was outstanding. My favorite restaurant at the Marriott was the Ginja restaurant, way over beyond the South pool. It serves fantastic traditional Thai food. We split our time pool time between the main pool and the South pool. The South pool was newly remodeled in blue and tan tones. The swim up bar is modern and funky. You must swim through a waterfall to get to a bar stool. The pool staff are eager to assist in setting up your chaise lounge and umbrella. As soon as you are settled, they bring water, cool wet towels and a spritzer bottle to keep you cool. We preferred the main pool where the service was the same but once they got to know us, they were quick to offer the food and drink menu. Late afternoon, they offered 2-for-1 cocktails, with a long gong signaling the start of Happy Hour. This pool is very family friendly with a shallow section for kids and a waterslide. The pool is adorned with stone elephant which shoot water from their trunks. The Marriott is situated on Mao Khao beach. It is a very narrow beach with rough waves. There are no chaise lounges set up on the beach so you need to lie on your towel if you want to sunbathe. Most people opt to sit by the pool instead. You can get a Thai massage on the beach for 400 baht, from Marriott approved masseuses. It’s a little more expensive than on Karon Beach but it is a fixed price – no haggling.The Marriott is a very nice hotel with beautiful grounds and outstanding service. But overall, it is way overpriced and the location is really not ideal.
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