Karon Phunaka Resort & Spa
What We Love
- Sea views throughout the property — enjoy them from the rooms, the pool, the spa…
- The glass funicular, which puts everyday elevators to shame
- Thai-inspired treatments at the small spa
- Lounging all day by the infinity pool
What To Know
- Not a beach property; Karon Beach is a 15-minute walk (there’s also free shuttle service)
- Free WiFi
- Not for those afraid of heights — the hotel is on a steep hill
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
When you stay at Karon Phunaka Resort & Spa in Karon, you’ll be in the mountains and minutes from Karon Temple and Karon Market. This 4-star hotel is within close proximity of Karon Beach and Dino Park Mini Golf.
Make yourself at home in one of the 86 air-conditioned rooms featuring refrigerators and LCD televisions. Your room comes with a pillowtop bed, and all rooms are furnished with single sofa beds. Rooms have private furnished balconies. Complimentary wired and wireless Internet access keeps you connected, and cable programming provides entertainment. Private bathrooms with separate bathtubs and showers feature deep soaking bathtubs and complimentary toiletries.
Relax at the full-service spa, where you can enjoy massages, body treatments, and facials. You can take advantage of recreational amenities such as an outdoor pool, a sauna, and a fitness center. Additional features include complimentary wireless Internet access, concierge services, and babysitting/childcare (surcharge). The complimentary beach shuttle makes getting to the surf and sand a breeze.
Satisfy your appetite at the hotel’s restaurant, which serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, or stay in and take advantage of room service (during limited hours). Relax with your favorite drink at a bar/lounge or a poolside bar.
Featured amenities include complimentary newspapers in the lobby, dry cleaning/laundry services, and a 24-hour front desk. A roundtrip airport shuttle is provided for a surcharge (available on request), and free self parking is available onsite.
How to Get There
The hotel is built on a hill, and this gives it some distinctive features ... it is the only hotel I know where you take a cable car to get to your room, and i would have booked the hotel for that alone. It would have made an ideal memory for my son when he was young, had I known about it then.
If you want somewhere directly on the beachfront, its not for you, but a courtesy shuttle will take you the few minutes to the beach and the centre of town and back again if you want, and that worked well for us.
Unlike some reviewers we found the pool more than adequate, and our room spacious, well equipped and comfortable.
Highlights were the staff and the management - they would go out of their way to make our stay comfortable, and the food. Brilliant chef when we were there, and if we fancied anything special we told him the day before, and he bought it and cooked it specially for us. We were treated as individuals and not just, as in so many places, as cardboard cut-outs.
We loved the place and will return.
Per other reviews, yes, the views are awesome. But that is the only good thing about this place. Very outdated. Needs a major overhaul. All rooms are a hike so DO NOT GO if you have any physical disability or are older and not good with hills and stairs.
This place is for couples only. Has a bit of a romantic flair I guess. Small pool with nothing much for kids. No grounds to go for a stroll or find a little nook to just hang out. Basically just a borderline average hotel with a view.
Air conditioning and TVs are low tech. Restaurant and lobby have no AC so you cannot enjoy a relaxing drink or read a book in any public space if you want a break from the heat and humidity. Beds are stiffest I've felt in a hotel, Rooms were clean but just did not "feel clean."
If you are a walker, the location is ok. Just know access to and from the hotel is a steep hill. About 15-20 minute walk to beach.
Says "Spa" in description, on elevator buttons, but there is NO SPA. You must leave the property for a massage, facial etc.
We felt deceived in that I was traveling with my parents, both in their 80s, and I saw no mention of the lack of direct access to hotel rooms or the extremely steep driveway and walk ways to all rooms. Rooms get pelted by the sun and are not insulated or have strong enough AC to handle it.
Needed an elevator, to the old and slow "Wonkavator", down the stairs, across the way, then back up stairs to get to our room. Manager Somart moved us there because he said it would be "easier" for us.
Somart was also very difficult to deal with when attempting to manage an issue. I had a very simple request for which I thought we were in agreement. He then walked away to supposedly send me an email I had requested, but after waiting for about 15 minutes, Somart refused to come back out and speak with me.
Due to his actions, we left the hotel and had to cancel all charges with AmEx.
Before leaving, I clearly warned the woman at the counter that if I am forced to leave without Somart coming back out, I will Call AMEX, cancel all charges, then write poor reviews on both Expedia and TripAdvisor. All she kept saying was "one minute please sir. One minute." I asked if she understood me and she claimed she did. We all threw up our hands and left in disgust and amazement.
Went to Novotel which is closer to the beach with WAY more amenities. Across from the beach and shopping (5 minutes), rooms were nicer, property blows this one away and was actually cheaper by the time you factored in breakfast. Novotel has full spa, 3 pools, separate water slide for kids, multiple foods options, 2 minute walk to the beach etc., etc. Has what seems to be an adult pool with a bar and away from the main family area.
Overall, we LOVED Novotel and would never recommend Karon, Phunaka Resort.
This must have been one of the most amazing rooms I've ever stayed in, especially considering the fact that we got a free upgrade to Deluxe room, with our own private jacuzzi on the balcony.
The view is amazing and the rooms are nice and spacious. The hotel is a 15-min walk from Karon beach, but there are free tuk-tuks provided in the morning. There is also a funicular train on site to help with climbing the steep hill that the resort is located on.
Everything about the property was awesome. The only downfall was that they were working on the pool (but it needed it badly!). The views are great, the staff are superior, the room was exceptional. I booked this room without knowing anything and I could not have asked for a better room/experience/location! The breakfast buffet was delicious and runs until a decent hour for non-morning people. I fell in love with this place!!
Pros: 1. Amazing views 2. Amazing staff 3. Very clean 4. Good food 5. Approachable 6. Very different architecture especially the lift 7. Great room sizes and amenities 8. Comfy beds 9. Amazing infinity pool
Cons : 1. Building needs refurbishment - looks rustic at places