Ok now part 2 of our Phuket trip.. A good friend of Ardent, recommended for us to stay in Holiday Inn Phuket which is located in the map below marked in a red outline.. There are two parts of Holiday Inn, first is the Main Wing which is where we are staying, the entrance is located with a green X .. the other section is the Busakorn wing (colored yellow within the red outline) which was under renovation, scheduled to be open on 31st August 2009.. its entrance faces the main road, marked in tourquise X .
There are some nifty location benefits in staying at this hotel, such as : –
- It is located on one of a few roads leading straight to the beach, no more walking with sandy slippers.
- Has a private access to the beach for hotel guests.
- Security will stop traffic for you when you want to cross the road towards the beach!
but its further away from Bangla Road.. so if you plan to party more then a nearer hotel would be better.. but these are just benefits from where the hotel is located..
We soon arrived at the hotel and below is the view of the hotel Main Wing reception..
Its not particularly huge but the wavy wall inprint behind the reception creates an illusion of space.. the above picture was taken to expose the wall correctly.. the lobby isn't lit as brightly as the wall, so to bring your attention towards the wall..
The above exposure shows the main lobby, all I can say is that the lobby has a welcoming feel with earth tones rather than those bright marble floored hotel lobbies which although feels grand but lacking soul..
Check-In process was done pretty smoothly, just a print out reservation, passports and credit card.. the lady that attended to us was amazingly friendly and attractive at that.. One of the things that strikes me was her overwhelming enthusiasm when she answered 'We are the number 1 hotel in Patong beach' to a question I posted to her.. Such passion, most people I know in Malaysia just work for the money… but here? its just different..
Another thing that caught me off was the hospitality.. it feels so genuine.. not the robotic 'Thank you please come again' kinda expression.. but rather the warm welcoming feel of a warm blanket on a cold night..
Usually the guy who brings up the luggage also shows you to your room.. but in Thailand, that lovely reception lady personally took us up to the room, walked in and gave us a brief introductory tour of the room.. all while giving a warm genuine smile.. I can't imagine she doing this multiple times a day and yet treat each guest like its her favourite.. simply lost for words..
Below are the pictures of the hotel room that I got..
Below are shots a day or two later after housekeeping..
Its not overly bright, if you want brighter just open the curtain.. the above 2 shots are taken with the curtains closed.. there's sufficient light needed if you need to read the book by the bed (2 tiny but bright spot light for each side of the bed, controlled separately.. good design as it allows one party to read without disturbing the other) .. the whole room has an extremely cozy homely ambience..
Heheehe.. normally hotels I've stayed in will only give you a few pillows but here? my god.. there are plenty, even a boaster.. I didn't even bother with the spare pillow in the closet.. bed is of good quality as well.. not the springy type but firm.. you can roll around without disturbing the person or persons..
The washroom is not particularly huge, yet neatly designed with practicality in mind.. I do love the top shower head.. feels like rain .. that's in addition to the normal hand held shower head..
Yep.. Red Earth shampoos, conditioner, bath gel, hand soap and body soap.. in Malaysia, you get Red Earth only at Sasa retail shops.. its so nice to finally know what I'm getting.. rather than the tiny bottles which can be filled with god knows what.. trust me, this tubes aren't refillable..
Do notice that there is a vertical light next to the mirror.. actually there is one on each side of the mirror.. this is a godsend if you ever needed to shave in the morning with half opened eyes.. I so hate the top lighting which doesn't help at all..
Another thing, all the tissue paper including the spare toilet paper rolls, all the ends are folded in a flower design.. you can see the tissue box flower design just next to the watermark below.. such attention to detail.. awesome!
Oh yeah, the rooms at Holiday Inn all have their own balcony .. to sit in, enjoy the view.. or just a place to dry your swimming gear.. up to you.. I didn't get the room with the sea view, which costs like double of what I paid for my room..
Yeah I got the 7-11 view opposite the hotel.. along the road to the beach.. below the balcony is the children's pool area..
So how about the breakfast? well the breakfast is at the SeaBreeze restaurant.. with a serving of fried rice, fried mee, congee to cereals, bacon, roasted lamb, scrambled eggs and a whole lots more… yum.. the sauces such as tomato and chilli are all from Heinz.. and best of all, 2 coffee making machines..
Cappuccino anyone? maybe a macchiato instead? or maybe cafe latte? also provides expresso and regular coffee.. and best of all, there is an option of 2x Expresso and 2x Regular Coffee.. that will really give you a kick for the day.. more like a lightning jolt.. perfect machine to have in the office ..
A must thing in Thailand is indulge in their fruits.. everything is sweet and heavenly..
Each day, they rotate the menu from Fish, Pork and Chicken and I guess repeat again… the fried mee is just superb.. can't imagine going to Thailand to compliment them down to their fried mee.. their congee is also damn yummy..
Just outside the restaurant is the main pool.. below is the shot from the pool facing into the restaurant and hotel..
The rest of the shots are those of the pool area.. of course it being early in the morning, the umbrellas aren't out in force yet..
And while taking quick snaps of the pool area.. encountered Mr Slug..
All hard at work going god knows where.. I wanted to take a shot that depicts Mr Slug travelling from some place far.. the wide angle lens allowed me to create much depth into the image thus having the illusion of Mr Slug travelling.. the low angle shot gives a unique view.. flash was used to bring out Mr Slug..
Heading from the pool to the hotel from a side walkway..
Ok, I stayed on the 3rd floor of the main wing.. and this is my view in the centre courtyard..
The images above is half of the courtyard.. the garden you see above is on the 2nd floor.. below the garden should be a bunch of meeting rooms at the ground floor.. talk about a great use of space..
The picture below shows the 2nd part of the courtyard which extends all the way down to the ground floor that houses seating places for the lounge..
Ok.. now the view from the 2nd floor garden..
And below is the view from the ground floor lounge..
Ok.. now as a guest of Holiday Inn, despite staying at the main wing, we are allowed to chill out at the busakorn pool.. tho we have to walk a short distance towards the busakorn wing first.. below is the view towards the pool area…
and finally you'll be greeted by the below images of the lovely busakorn pool…
Some of the things to note is that the pool water is pure blue.. no editing of the above pictures.. this is because the pool is exceptionally clean even without using the oh-so-the-common chlorine found in Malaysian pools.. the view while swimming in the pool is simply beautiful.. I've never seen water so clear and blue.. and the best part, the water doesn't smell nor does it frizz up your hair..
So with all that, its no wonder that this is Holiday Inn's throphy case! they certainly worked really hard down to the itty bitty small things.. Its never easy maintaining high standards, as every small little items count.. this hotel really takes care of their guests down to how the ends of toilet paper is presented to us.. this is their level of dedication towards excellence.. something that Malaysians should learn from and for go the typical 'tidak apa' slacker's attitude..
I've also taken plenty of beautiful flowers at the hotel which I'll show case in a separate part .. those would make lovely wall papers..
Coming soon.. Part 3.. [Fantasea Show]