Between Patong and Karon, an establishment of imposing size which almost has the exclusivity of Relax Bay. Programme: a profusion of sports and organised activities.
Between Patong Beach and Karon Beach, opposite a small bay called Relax Bay. The Meridien is 9 miles from Phuket Town on the east coast, around 25 miles (50 minutes by car) from the airport, 3 miles south of Patong.
The Meridien made an effort for the environment: 25% of the water used is recycled and used for the gardens. The hotel has its own boat, the "Margaret Lee", with which one day excursions on the surroundings islands are organised (meals are included). The sport equipment is complete and of good quality. You will even find a climbing rock and a diving centre very well equipped. Finally, for children, a young female elephant, Mali ("Jasmine" in English) goes pay a visit everyday with its driver and offers strolls on its back. A polo shirt labelled with the hotel logo is offered to all returning clients (which is 35% of the clients according to the hotel mnagement).
The spa has 10 very nice treatment rooms, which is 15 beds in total.
The Meridien is a huge concrete structure organised in three big wings on six floors, built in 1987 and partially renovated in 2003. Its creators made a clear effort to compensate its heavy character with some Thai style architectural elements (for example, layered roofs with reversed angles), however without being able to hide its massive enormous dimension. Advantage of this gigantism: particularly vast common areas, such as the entrance lobby or the pools area, situated between the buildings and the beach. In addition, the Meridien compensates what can be seen as a weakness of size with a particularly rich offer of organised activities and sport equipment, much higher than the average offered within this standard in Phuket. After the Tsunami, the hotel has entirely rebuilt the swimming pool and its surroundings, the spa, the sport equipment and the restaurant in the basement.
The Meridien has a total of 470 rooms, 54 of which suites, with a maximum capacity of around 1,200 persons. Apart from twelve suites, all rooms are of superior category and then benefit from a standardised accommodation, but with three level of prices depending on their orientation (garden, pool, sea). Within the usual standards of the Meridien hotel chain, which means spacious, comfortable and perfectly equipped, they display posh furniture, much panelling and a certain bourgeois classicism in the decoration. The rooms have satellite TV, safe, tea and coffee kit, hairdryer, umbrella and iron.
The catering offer satisfies the establishment's size. 7 different restaurants (4 a la carte while the other 3 work exclusively as buffet) offer a wide range of cuisines from Japanese gastronomy and Italian specialities to Thai dishes and classics from international cuisine. If the weather allows it, a beach barbecue is organised twice a week. Finally, 3 bars and 2 snacks and coffee-shops offer fishes or a lighter meal. Note that the "Pakarang" (coral), being in the middle of the swimming pool, change buffet and setting theme every night.
Although there is no real private beach in Thailand, that of the Meridien is a real one: in fact, the hotel's buildings extend on the whole available area opposite the bay, between two hills, thus "locking" the access to the beach from the outside (apart from the sea, which implies that you have to be motivated to insist...) A private beach then, on the shores of the Andaman Sea, also big enough to accommodate all guests of the hotel even during busy periods. A real competitive advantage, compared to the busy public beaches near Patong and Karon.
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Mark out of 10 for geographical location
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