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The Andara beach club on the sand at Kamala beach

Andara Tops Phuket Luxury But Kamala Beach Club Fails to Please

Friday, February 24, 2012
PHUKET: The Andara Resort on Phuket has come in second on a poll of TripAdvisor readers of the 25 Most Luxurious Hotels in Thailand. Phuket region resorts poll strongly.

With the Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok, in first place followed by Andara, Krabi's Phulay Bay Ritz Carlton Reserve fills third spot.

Trisara Phuket occupties thirteenth position, with Phuket's JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort & Spa 15th.

The Rayavadee Resort at Railay Beach, Krabi, lies in 18th, with The Pavilions Phuket one spot further back.

The Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok, fills position 25 in TripAdvisor's Top 25 Luxury Hotels of the World.

Here's what the latest reviewer of the Andara had to say on February 22. The resort is at Kamala, high on the hills, quite some distance from Kamala beach:

''We originally booked a 4 night stay here based upon strong reviews, etc. Well, we ended up absolutely loving Andara and booked for an additional 4 nights (canceling a reservation at another property).

''There are properties/resorts that are better situated ON the beach with unobstructed ocean views of course, but that was more than made up for by the property and suites/villas themselves.

''It was truly as though we were staying in a beautiful home complete with every needed amenity, including our own plunge pool.

''The sense of tranquility and relaxation was prevalent throughout the property. The staff, the decor, the manager, the food, the service, bath amenities, transportation... EVERYTHING was excellent.

''We look forward to returning to Andara soon!

''The only note of disappointment I'd make is to point out that the Beach Club is really just a few white day beds amongst a crowded beach, surrounded with a lot of activity.

''The beach hawkers selling everything under the sun come right up to your day bed, without the staff doing much about it. This was a bit annoying after awhile.

''We ended up preferring the Andara main pool or our plunge pool over the 'Beach Club'. On the plus side, a bucket of ice cold bottles of water and wi-fi are available from the staff.''

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Do you really believe this Ed? Is it newsworthy?
A few days ago CNN reported the following: "(CNN) -- Phrases such as "reviews you can trust" and "reviews from real travelers" have misled TripAdvisor users in the United Kingdom, according to a judgment issued Wednesday by the Advertising Standards Authority in Britain".

Posted by Pete on February 24, 2012 16:30

Editor Comment:

Do I really believe what, Pete? Yes, it's newsworthy. TripAdvisor is among the most influential sources of information for holidaytakers these days. Resorts bend over forward, sidewards and backwards to get good reviews. Therefore if in TA's judgement there's a list of hotels that their readers rank highly, that's news. Whether you believe the list is entirely your affair. The truth about destinations and resorts is somewhere in there, once you discount the excessive praise and the heaviest criticism. TA's mistake was in assuming all of it is genuine. As for setting up a five-star resort's beach club on a public beach . . . that's a different kind of story.

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Er, Ed you have mis-interpretated what Pete has just said. It is a know fact that some comments on trip advisor have been posted by hotel employees. I know as I have a few friends who are hoteliers on this island.

Posted by yozza on February 25, 2012 07:28

Editor Comment:

I think you've failed to understand what I said, yozza. There are some genuine TripAdvisor reviews, some posted by the resorts, and some posted by the resorts' deadly enemies. As I said, the best idea is to disregard the least favorable comments and the most favorable comments. Then there's a chance the reviews you are looking at are genuine. The February 22 review we've quoted for Andara is unlikely to have been posted by an employee.

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The -Ed- is completely right.
I write and read in Tripadvisor myself and can compare some places of Interest and Hotels, Restaurants with the postings and comments at TA.
Take away some of the best comments and some of the negative.
The rest should be what the truth is.
Also, trust more the comments of people who made more comments and postings to other places as well and have not only one or two, three posts.

Posted by Alfred on February 26, 2012 18:51


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