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Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Haifa
Level Contributor
328 posts
3 reviews
Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Hi,

We (a family with 2 kids, ages 6 and 10) want to spend 8 nights in Khao Lak in December and are hesitating between a family suite in the Orchid and 2 connected 2-storied cottage rooms in the BKL. The cost is very similar. I understand that the Orchid is much more isolated, but we'll probably rent a car, so it is not so important, though it would be nice to walk to restaurants, instead of driving.. Orchid seems to have larger landscaped territory and some kind of children playground (though seems to be for much younger kids).. What hotel has the nicer beach? Possible snorkelling off the beach? Sorry for rambling, but I am truly stuck on this..

Thanks,

Julia

Phuket
Level Contributor
2,979 posts
1. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

My opinion would be to go for the Baan Khao Lak.

Both have excellent beaches - the one in front of the Orchid will be much more yours alone (I like that). The Orchid probably has a bigger more kid-friendly lawn area - good place for them to burn off some steam.

If you want snorkeling - there is rocky around about 50 meters out from the front of the BKL - with quite good snorkeling on the far side of it - and also good snorkeling at the south end of the beach that the BKL sits on.

Also, if you want to walk to places to eat - there are many in the immediate area of the BKL and it is only about a 12-minute walk into the main part of La On (Khao Lak Town).

Try the Penang Ped (duck) at the BKL - excellent!

Haifa
Level Contributor
328 posts
3 reviews
2. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Thank you, Tedkarma.

Booked a superior suite with 2 extra-beds in BKL :-) Now I just need to wait...

Julia

Poulton Le Fylde...
Destination Expert
for Khao Lak, Khao Sok National Park
Level Contributor
45,458 posts
107 reviews
3. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Good choice in your circumstances, I think.

Southern California
Level Contributor
530 posts
12 reviews
4. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Julia, How did you book your stay at BKL?

What agent or website?

I am having a very difficult time with booking a room for next February at KL Orchid Beach.

A Thai agent in BKK quoted one price (included VAT/tax/breakfast) but now that I am ready to book the rate has gone up nearly 300 BHT per day & they are claiming that taxes were not included in the earlier quotes (when they were).

In the US we call this 'bait & switch'.

The reservations agent at KLO is offering a higher, full-priced, rack rate w/ 'fruit plate' but says nothing about tax or breakfast inclusion (earlier emails included this)... which makes his rate much higher.

Also he says it's in BHT only & claims the website booking agencies will not be able to guarantee a specific room (which I need as I am handicapped).

ASIA ROOMS has not replied to 3 emails I sent from their website.

AWDIRECT sent an email that they will not update their rates until October (by that time both of these hotels will be sold out for Feb.) and said I should contact them in October.

Can ANYONE direct me to an HONEST agency that will book our stay in US $ dollars and that will verify that I need a specific room, because I am HANDICAPPED and need a ground floor room.

I actually have the number of the room that I need.

I am VERY disappointed by the dishonesty and that one price is offered, then another, higher one when you say you are ready to book.

ADVICE please.

Poulton Le Fylde...
Destination Expert
for Khao Lak, Khao Sok National Park
Level Contributor
45,458 posts
107 reviews
5. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Have a look at this site:

http://khaolaklovers.com/hotels.htm

It is a well respected agency and has rates for both hotels for next February including tax, service charge and breakfast.

The rates are shown initially in Baht but you can show their conversion to other currencies at the rate prevailing today. However, when you are charged and I think this agency only takes a deposit, you will be charged in Baht and that will be converted at the prevailing rate on your credit card statement.

I doubt whether the agency can guarantee you a specific room. You will, I think, have to rely on the hotel doing that (or trying their best) one a room is booked. Booking systems with individual hotels in SE Asia are not as sophisticated as those with the big chains.

Also I'm afraid, for all it's charm and natural beauty (and I'm a Khao Lak addict) the rapid recovery of KL post Tsunami has brought about a pretty steep learning curve in customer relations and staff training at some resorts.

Good luck.

Southern California
Level Contributor
530 posts
12 reviews
6. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Hello Andora,

I am familar with KhaoLak Lovers, they charge in BHT (both Visa & MC charge a conversion fee of 3%)...

I got a reply from Asia Web Direct & apparently they charge in US $,

if you wish... which I do as I don't want to pay conversion rates.

Have you stayed at Orchid Beach hotel?

BOTH of these websites claim to have 3 category of room; Deluxe, Premier Deluxe & Family Suite. From what I have seen on the KL Orchid's website, there are only two categories of rooms; DELUXE SEAVIEW or FAMILY SUITE.

Is there an entrance to the hotel that has stairs with a handrail?

I need a handrail if there are stairs.

The hotel reservations manager was concerned about the entrance stairs... I'm wondering if there is a railing or not?

Poulton Le Fylde...
Destination Expert
for Khao Lak, Khao Sok National Park
Level Contributor
45,458 posts
107 reviews
7. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Sorry,

I've not stayed at either only paying a cursory visit to the Orchid and a good tour of the BKL as we are considering it for pssible future use. The Orchid looked nice but is in a remote location with no restaurants or bars in the vicinity and a taxi necessary to get to KL. Didn't get close enough to comment on entrance/handrail.

As I recall there were no stairs to the entrance to BKL which is close to restaurants, bars and shops both along the beach or the highway.

Haifa
Level Contributor
328 posts
3 reviews
8. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Hi,

I've contacted the hotels directly - via the reservation forms on their sites - and got fast and informative replies from both of them. The reservation was eventually done by fax.

For both of the hotels, the internet agency sites (sawadee and hoteltravel, if I remember correctly) reported that the room type I needed was fully booked for the time period.

Regards,

Julia

Southern California
Level Contributor
530 posts
12 reviews
9. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Arandora,

The BKL is handicapped accessible... so there are no stairs, they ramped it after they rebuilt it after the tsunami. The handicapped accessible rooms are, according to their website drawings, very far from the beach w/ NO view of the sea. THAT is the problem for me.

We want to be able to see the sea from our verandah.

I have no problem w/ a remote beach... which is why we're preferring the Orchid, we have, literally, thousands of Thai restaurants in L.A. because thousands of Thais live here... the food is very cheap & authentic... so eating out is not something that is important.

We plan on renting a car, we love to self-drive... to explore the national park nearby... so there will be no taxi to to town, as

we will rent & drive for a couple of days.

Has ANYONE been to the national park just east of Khao Lak?

Did ANYONE do the speed boat excursion to the Similan Islands?

Is there one that has snorkel FROM THE BEACH off of one of the islands?

Did ANYONE do the boat tour of Pang- Nga Bay? How was it?

Southern California
Level Contributor
530 posts
12 reviews
10. Re: Khao Lak Orchid or Baan Khao Lak?

Thanks Julia,

I've been dealing w/ the resort directly... they charge in BHT so that means Visa/MasterCard charges a 3% to convert...

ASIA WEB DIRECT will charge in US $ or other currencies... and it's a bit cheaper...

Since you have children be aware that many folks have commented on rip currents along the coast... there is no lifeguard... if you & your family do not know how to recognize what a rip tide looks like from the shore... there is a website that has a good description w/ photos if you scroll down...

…blogspot.com/2007/04/some-tips-on-not-drown…

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