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Hotel Reviews: dusit D2, Chiang Mai | Amari Watergate, Bangkok | Amari Vogue, Krabi
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Beach Bound

After more than a week of traveling and exploring, I was more than ready to relax on the beach, and the Amari Vogue hotel did not disappoint. In short, the hotel was amazing. It was named Trip Advisor’s traveler’s choice for best relaxation hotel for a reason.

Video Review

Location

If you’re going to stay in this part of Thailand, you need to make a decision. Do you want to be in Krabi Town itself, which features shops, hotels, and restaurants, or do you want to stay at a more exclusive resort.

For me, the choice seemed easy. While the town might be more convenient, it was too touristy, with shop after shop of tourist traps offering knock-off t-shirts and discount massages. With multiple pools and restaurants, a private beach, and a free shuttle to town, the better option to me is a property such as the Amari Vogue.

C’mon… they have a fountain with cool elephants shooting water out of their trunk as you walk in… what’s not to like?

Food

The breakfast buffet was excellent, as was the Bellini restaurant right on the beach. We went with the buffalo mozzarella cheese appetizer on more than one occasion. The menu is diverse enough that you can try different things for lunch, dinner, or snacks, and not feel like you’re trapped eating in one place at the resort.

In terms of drinks, there is plenty of Chang beer to go around, but when you’re sitting and watching the sunset, a Pina Colada or Daiquiri seems much more appropriate, so that was a popular option from their large cocktail menu quite often.

Staff

The staff was great and helped us organize our trip into town and our island tour. There was one staff member that just had the biggest smile on her face the entire time. She’d come up to the table and even if it was just topping off our water or handing us an extra towel, she looked like the happiest person on the planet.

It made me wonder if it was easier to work in a hotel like this vs. one in New York or even Hawaii. I mean, it has to be right? Sure there are rude jerks the world over, but I’d have to guess 95% of the people at this hotel are there to relax, on a romantic vacation, a honeymoon, or something similar. Sure seems like the crowd would be easier to please here. I’d be happy too.

Rooms

We had a great room on an upper floor with a view of the water from a small balcony. The only bummer was looking at the room next to us, and seeing they had a jacuzzi on their balcony (will have to upgrade to that next time).

The bed was enormous — it was literally about 6-7 feet wide — and quite possibly could have been the largest bed I have ever slept in. It easily could have slept a family of four. I bet two NBA players could have slept side-by-side across the opposite way across the bed.

Gym/Spa

The gym was decent enough to give you a good workout, but the real star here was the spa. While not the rock bottom prices of Chiang Mai, where you can get a 1 hour massage for about $10, for about $50 you get the experience that would cost you 3X that in a major US city.

What was really unique were the pools. Instead of one large pool, there were multiple options on each level as you made your way from the hotel down to the beach, with each offering little nooks and crannies to relax, get some sun, or view the sunset from the infinity pool.

Blogger Accommodations

The WiFi was free and worked well, and the only major problem getting work done was the pool, beach, and sunset beckoning you at every turn to power down that laptop and live a little.

The best I could do is film part of my review right on the beach. If you look closely you can see portions of my “professional” setup:
– An external mic running from the camera… it went down the ground, up my shirt, and then clipped to my collar. It helped to block out some of the wind noise from the beach.
– A notebook wedged into the table as my “teleprompter” for notes
– A white towel on the table that was out of the scene on camera, but served to reflect light back up and eliminate some of the harsh shadows from the blazing sun overhead.
– And of course, my lovely bikini-clad assistant, whose only question when I asked her to break away from a lounge chair to help was “Um, sure… can I bring my wine?”

Good times.

Disclosure: The Amari hotel sponsored part of my stay while in Krabi. This review represents my honest feedback based on my experience there.

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