Hey Y’all! This is the place to be for reviews of where I have stayed.
NOTE: I’ve rated them on a five-star scale.
NaNa Chart-Dorm Style ฿390 (1 person) — * * *
NaNa Chart is located along Sukhumvit Road, in what I would call the heart of Bangkok. It is quite near the BTS line at the Asok stop, so there is easy access to practically any part of the city. This is a backpackers hostel, and while I very much enjoyed the amenities it had to offer, I was a little disappointed that there were no fellow backpackers to meet. Since I had met some people along the way, I was not alone in my six-bed dorm, but there was only one newcomer during my stay. NaNa Chart has aircon from 8:00pm to 8:00am if there are three or more people in the room, but it’s not a problem to get a fan from the front desk. This hostel comes equipped with bed linens, aircon (assuming there are 3+ persons), flush toilets, hot water and includes breakfast. Like most hostels, you’ll need to bring your own towel. We did have an incident where the faucet in the shower came off, so they had to shut the water off in our room. It wasn’t much of a problem since we knew the guys in the connecting dorm and were able to walk through the shared door to use their toilets, but it was a bit inconvenient. Had we not had the water shut off and there been more of an opportunity to meet other backpackers, I would have given this four stars. Despite that, I would still recommend it.
Blue Lotus Resort-Fan Bungalow ฿400 (2 persons) — * * * *
A group of friends and I went to Koh Phangan for the Full Moon party. Lonely Planet (the traveler bible) along with many other people we had met said not to stay on the main beach since there are many thefts that take place whilst people are partying. Blue Lotus was a great place for us to stay because it was off the “party beach” of Haad Rin, but easy access via tuktuk. I stayed in a fan bungalow that had a shower, but no flush toilet. This would be a fine place to stay for a night or two, but we stayed for four nights which was a little uncomfortable, as the bungalows are located too close together to get a nice breeze through your windows, and I’m convinced to save money they put box spring matresses in some of the rooms and the top matresses in others. The upside to this place was the nice restaurant they had on site. Although breakfast was not included in rent, the menu offered a variety of options, including some decent mexican food. The owner of Blue Lotus spoke English very well, as he had lived in California for some time. He was also very kind enough to drive us around for a cheaper rate than the tuktuks across the island would cost. I would highly recommend this for Full Moon go-ers. The hospitality at this place was through the roof!
Mai Pen Rai-Family Style Fan Bungalow ฿750 (4 persons) — * * *.5
I can’t give Mai Pen Rai a full four stars because of the fact that they turn the electricity off at midnight. This wouldn’t be a problem except that it gets so hot in those bungalows when the fan isn’t on. The place itself was really cool, though. Mai Pen Rai is located on the east side of Koh Phangan, and it’s very much secluded from the wild party nature of Full Moon. We wanted to relax and get away from the hustle of the west side, and these bungalows were perfect for that. The bungalow we stayed in was family style. There was a large bed on the main portion and a loft with two twin sized beds. This was my first experience with mosquito nets, and I have to say, they could have done better. They have the type that is connected to a circular ring above your bed, so you’re constantly getting tangled in the netting when you move. The layout was perfect, though. The bathroom itself could have been art. It had a flush toilet, no hot water, but it was in a rock cave with a couple holes in the wooden slats for ventilation. Expect to meet some critters when you go in there, like snails crawling along the vanity or a foot long lizard hanging out along the wall. Mai Pen Rai is located right along a quiet beach, you had to crawl through a rock cave to get to the bungalows. This is not suitcase friendly, so be ready to either ditch your suitcase for a hiking sack or stuff a couple things into your backpack and leave your suitcase at the front desk. If you’re looking for a nice place to relax and chill, I’d recommend it, just be ready to have total seclusion and some discomfort when you’re sleeping.
Jep’s Bungalows – Fan Style Bungalow ฿300 (1 person) — * * * * *
Jep’s gets five stars for having the perfect price, ideal location, a glorious restaurant, friendly staff and clean rooms. Because I went over the Chinese New Year holiday weekend, I expected the prices to be a bit higher, as many people were vacationing in celebration. I was pleasantly surprised to find that, not only did Jep’s have vacancy, but they also had the best deal of the three (Naga, Tok’s, Jep’s) that are located along the same stretch. Jep’s also offers an extensive international menu. I had the best burger while there, it’s highly recommended. The beach just outside of Jep’s is also the quietest part along Ao Phai beach. You really don’t even have to leave the area around Jep’s if you don’t want to. The fan rooms are simple, but include a TV. The bathrooms are outside and shared, though easily accessible and nearby. There’s no hot water, but when you’re staying on the beach, are you really showering that often? I’ll definitely be staying here again.
Chaweng Budget Hotel ฿1,000 (2 persons) — * * * *
I stayed at CBH for one night on the way to Koh Phangan, and this was an excellent place to do so! My friend and I split the room which is plenty big, has a refrigerator, A/C unit, hot water and TV if you choose to stay inside. It’s literally a three minute walk from the beach and the hotel provides you with a beach towel. If you’re not feeling up for the sand, though, there’s also a pool located at the non-budget Chaweng Hotel located just across the road. It’s quite nice. You can also opt for an included breakfast if you want to pay a bit extra for your room. They have security cameras in the lobby that are actually running unlike many others you see in Thailand, so it’s safe to leave your bags in the lobby after you check out if you want to hang out on the beach before leaving the island. I give this hotel four stars for the convenience to the beach, the kindness of the staff and the overall comfort of the room.
Bowthong Resort, Sairee Beach- Fan Bungalow ฿1,200 (3 persons) — * * * * .5
This resort is a collection of bungalows set along Sairee Beach. The nicer of the bungalows (the ones with A/C) are beachfront and are much more expensive. My friends and I had gone to Koh Tao for a diving adventure, so we weren’t necessarily looking for the royal treatment. Since we went during peak season (which is anytime after a full moon party) the group we were diving with didn’t have any accommodations for us, so we ended up staying here. Sairee beach isn’t very large, so it this was a convenient walk to wherever we needed to go, especially our dive shop (Big Blue) and all the bars. Like most places in Thailand, you’ll find bugs here and there in your room, but I can truly say even though there may have been bugs in the bed, my bungalow was “bed bug” free. Though there isn’t breakfast included in the room rate, there is a nice beachside restaurant where you can pick up the resorts’ wi-fi (unfortunately you couldn’t get wi-fi in the room but who wants to when there’s a beach outside?) and enjoy a couple delicious lassis with your breakfast. And who knows, you might get lucky like I did and see two female workers get in a fist fight over who knows what…. Breakfast and entertainment. I’ll actually add point five to this review for that….