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Reviews (944)
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All reviewspersonal butlerthe reservesunset barbutler servicebeach villaocean pavilionhong islandthai restaurantdouble kingsri trangprivate poolindoor bathbaobiggest bedshuttle boatandaman seawhisked away
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Reviewed 21 May 2012

The property is an ideal one for honeymooners - amazing sunsets, a breathtaking infinity pool, very large rooms and very large bathrooms. The stay was one of the highlights of our Thailand trip especially the bathroom and shower area. There were issues regarding squeaky doors, lights, etc. but were addressed promptly by the Management who are keen to ensure that the clients have a wonderful experience. You can take a transfer to Hong Island in less than 20 minutes for Snorkelling although the communication levels are questionable as no one was there to inform us that getting into the water around mid-May is not a good idea as you will find Jellyfish as it is the outset of monsoon. The directions to the rooms and restaurants were not well marked and it can get confusing. There is a butler allotted room which is a welcome thing. Phulay Bay is quite out of the way and if you wish to visit the closest town Ao Nang it is 30 minutes away. An ideal place for those seeking a tranquil all-inclusive vacation - more fit for honeymooners rather than families.

Room Tip: Whilst checking in and before unpacking check for squeaky doors and whether all the lights in the room and bathroom are functioning or else it can be frustrating especially if you land up late in the evening and want to take a shower and realize that the lights do not come on.
  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank SubhashMotwani
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 April 2012

Stayed 6 nights in a resort Pavillion and sadly I have to agree with "underwhelmed" - the real positives are the setting and the quality of the accomodations both of which are great (even allowing the for the industrial eyesore to one side). However the rest of our experience really fell short of what I would have expected both from a resort charging these rates and more specifically the Ritz Carlton brand. I have stayed at 3 other RC properties and only had the best service but this was not to be had at Phulay Bay. The basics of 5 star service were all missing in many areas. The biggest problems lie with the quality of F & B and the service in the dining outlets all of which were way below par, especially bearing in mind the very high prices for wine and food. Phulay Bay is the first of RC's "Reserve" properties that are meant to provide special levels of service in a more intimate setting and they are miles off the mark @ PB regrettably. On a more positive note the new GM is really trying to amends (she was previously @ RC Penha Longa in Portugal which I loved and gets consistently great TA reviews) and she did take on board all my complaints and helped us both with recompense and reassurance that things will improve. My only concern is that with the huge competition at the top level in Thailand customers prepared to pay the high rates charged may start looking elsewhere too soon.

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank marty99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 April 2012

During a two weeks visit to Thailand indeed I could not have missed spending a night at the Ritz-Carlton Phulay Bay! The resort is located in an impressive and untouched location, surrounded by strong coloured vegetation. The arrival was definitely one of the most unforgettable moments during my stay: not having a reception to check in surely welcomes you to a new reality! The welcome pavilion with its pebbles path on water felt like a new Ritz-Carlton experience. A Thai butler with a genuine Thai smile escorted me to the room and she ensured to really "butler" me during my whole stay: from the boat to Hong Island (which is complimentary and is really worth!) to the evening sunset lounge where she had a very genuine conversation before escorting me to dinner. The service really makes you feel pampered!
The room (Ocean Pavilion) had an amazing bathroom with beautiful marbles. Absolutely loved the local amenities with natural products in clay hand made bottles! The flower shaped bath transmits a serenity ambience, perfect for a relaxing bath! Not too mention the 4metres bed with a layer of silk touch linen on a feather duvet!
The pool area has a great location on top of the beach with views to the islands surrounding.
The hotel also has an extensive offer of restaurants inside, in case you really do not want to leave Paradise!
Phulay Bay is surely a different level on a hotel experience, perfect for a getaway to re-energise and find the best of Thai hospitality!

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with friends
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Thank MafaldaCT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2012

My husband and I unfortunately arrived during a mini-monsoon (crazy amount of rain) so check-in was done in our Resort Pavillion rather than being done in the usual reception pavillion.
We booked the Resort Pavillion as it was the cheapest option but also because it is actually a lot larger than the Ocean View rooms which are on the floor above. On arrival we were totally blown away with the room...two large terraces, two large rainfall showers next to each other with a sofa in the room and a large marble indoor bath and also a huge outdoor bath in a private garden....stunning and probably the nicest room we have ever stayed in to date.

The resort only has 54 rooms, but these are pretty spread out over the resort which is actually quite large.

We booked the half board option which added quite a bit onto the booking, but once there and able to see the prices we were pleased we had done so (especially as we heard from another couple that the hotel had charged them to leave the resort at night to go eat out in a nearby town?????) - we were expecting prices to be high & some items really were, others not so bad. We appeared to be the only other couple on half board, which we though was strange but this was piece of mind for us. This option allowed us to either have lunch or dinner each day (we chose dinner).
The problem we experienced with the half board option was that we didn't actually find out how much credit we were allowed until Day 4 of our holiday, at first we thought we were allowed whatever we wanted...after finding out the amount we then stuck to this until one night a waiter in the international restaurant told us that if we wanted dessert then we would need to pay extra....we obviously questionned this, knowing we had had a reasonably cheap meal & were nowhere near the budgeted amount & in the end i had to request to actually see the bill - the bill was actually miles less and the waiter had to apologise. That made me feel incredibly uncomfortable & it spoilt our meal that night.

There are 3 restaurants a Thai one (our favourite), the international one (serving pasta, steaks and where you can still order thai food) & a fish one. The Thai and the Fish one were actually on rotation each night.
My husband eats fish and i don't, so we asked out butler if the fish restaurant did anything other than fish, turns out they don't so our Butler spoke with the restaurant and organised them to cook me a steak just so that my husband wouldn't miss out on experiencing the restaurant - the steak was stunning and the restaurant was beautiful - actually used to be one of the Royal villas which they converted so that diners could have other options. Special thanks to Raoul (waiter who provided me with mint tea for my sunburn one night), and Ken who we loved chatting to (your english is amazing!!)

The pool is stunning....really big and beds/cabanas are everywhere & well spread apart so you don't feel as though you're lying next to anyone else. On arrival each day, the pool boys come and put the towels down for you, put the umbrella up if you want it opened and bring you cold water, cold mint towels and a big coconut (which they cut up and serve to you whenever you want it) which are all put in a mini cooler by your sun beds. Special thanks to Ekk who looked after us so well - was a pleasure chatting to you each day. There are frisbees and floats around to use and the view is spectacular looking out at all of the limestone crags at sea - i miss that view.

As the beach isn't great, but much better than i expected after reading all of the reviews on here, the hotel provides a free boat transfer to Hong Island (a bit like phi phi with a big lagoon and stunning rock formations) this is only 10 mins away and can be seen from the pool, on arrival you pay THB200 (about £4 as its a national park). We went 9-12.30am and there is another boat shuttle at 11-3pm i think. A member of staff comes with you and hangs around making sure that everyone is ok. They provide towels, water, snokelling gear etc and you just chill. Have some gorgeous pics, big fishies in the lagoon that you can snorkle with - we loved it. The tide did came up extremely quickly though causing there to be absolutely no beach left so we just left at that time but lots of people were still turning up so god knows what they did apart from swim!!?
If you don't fancy Hong island, then the beach to the right of the resort is perfect. We walked there one day and swam in the clear warm water.

Twice during our stay the hotel arranged a baby elephant visit where you could feed it and have pics taken, it also did a few tricks for everyone - most people went to this & we thought it was a really nice gesture.

I used the spa twice too. My husband and i had an amazing thai massage and i had other treatments. The spa is beautiful sauna, steam room, plunge pools which you can actually use even if not having treatments. Supposed to be separate male and females facilities but it was so quiet when we went that they let us go in together which was nice - only problem was the steam room - you actually couldn't go in it was ridiculously hot...like burning hot which was a shame as it looked lovely.

The hotel provides other activities but mostly for a charge, the only free ones were the baby elephant visit, hong Island and some gym classes whilst we were there, which is a shame as we would have done more had the chargeable activities been cheaper.

An all round nice week to chill out and relax. Special thanks to Haze our butler who works extremely hard looking after 8-9 rooms at a time. We loved the little cookies/chocolates that you left each night, our half drawn baths with petals in each night, for collecting us to/from the restaurants and organising that meal at the Fish restaurant for my husband and i.

We will be back one day, but it is super expensive and there are other really nice resorts around Thailand that we would look at first.

Room Tip: The cheapest rooms are AMAZING and bigger than the Ocean Villas!!! :-)
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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8  Thank JerseyGirl-uk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 March 2012

I'm surprised this has the ritz Carlton name on it. The staff tried but just couldn't manage 5* service. We had to ask repeatedly for things, had to wait repeatedly for things that were supposed to be included etc...the food was mediocre, especially for the price. The breakfast buffet wanted to charge extra for waffles. What? There are many areas that can be improved upon, especially with so ridiculously many resorts in Thailand to choose from instead. Having hangover 2 filmed here probably is the best thing it has going for it.

  • Stayed: March 2012
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9  Thank SDamrow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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