Katiliya Mountain Resort & Spa
What We Love
- The largest suites in the region, starting around 900 square feet
- A private karaoke room for up to 30 people
- The Spa on the Lake, with treatment suites that have their very own private terraces
What To Know
- Children under 5 stay free in their parents’ room
- There are no elevators in the hotel
- No pets are allowed
- Free WiFi
- Handicap Accessible
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
With panoramic views of the verdant forests in Thailand’s remote Golden Triangle—where it meets Laos and Burma—Katiliya is an extremely comfortable base for exploring Lanna (northern Thai) culture; 800-year-old ruins from that ancient civilization dot the region. There’s an outdoor pool with cushioned loungers, Jacuzzis, a library, and the full-service Katiliya Adventure Club, which arranges excursions in the area. The dining choices are varied, from northern Thai cuisine in the romantic Baan Thai Restaurant to the tapas menu, single malt whiskeys and cigars at the Fireplace Bar.
In the Area
Nearby Doi Luang National Park encompasses more than 450 square miles and is home to more than 89 species of birds and 12 types of mammals including wild pigs and barking deer. The village of Mae Salong, also known as Santi Khiri (Village of Peace), is sometimes referred to as Little Switzerland for its enchanting mountain scenery and trekking opportunities; tea and Chinese herbs are cultivated here. For those interested in something stronger (learning about it, not partaking), the Hall of Opium offers insights into the history of the drug’s cultivation and use.
How to Get There
The rooms! The massage! The restaurant at night! We had a lovely time. Next time we will stay longer! The bed was so comfy that I don’t think I moved an inch all night. If I could capture the sounds of this retreat I’d play them every night before I went to sleep just to relive my happy place.
Our stay in Katiliya Mountain Resort and Spa was superb as they have everything that we desired for i.e. nice cool weather, big, cosy and clean room, delicious food, good staff & services, nice heated pools, and not forgetting the bicycle rides that we had around their very own park. It was so much for relax in nature holidays! The tour that was arranged for us was really good and thumbs up to the drivers too.
We had such a peaceful night at this hotel, the bed was so comfy and the room felt cosy. The room itself was huge, the bathroom was also massive!! We had a lovely balcony with a fantastic view, couldn't fault this hotel. The staff were extremely friendly and always on-hand to help with luggage. We ordered room service for dinner, the food was tasty and hot, would recommend! We also had breakfast at this hotel, there was a variety of choice and a lovely view from the restaurant. Would love to come back to this hotel, would definitely recommend.
Our 7-night stay at Katiliya Mountain Resort and Spa was great and exactly what we were looking for …and what we needed.
As with most hotels and resorts, there were some problems. Let me get those out of the way before I move on to the good stuff.
Reservation: Booking a room was complicated and frustrating. It took me 3 days just to get hold of someone in the reservations department. If I was not so dead-set on staying at this particular resort, I would definitely have given up on Katiliya and made a reservation elsewhere.
Check-in: We did not enjoy a particularly warm welcome and we were surprised by the impersonal and laissez faire attitude of the person who checked us in. All the reception staff members we encountered subsequently were very polite and helpful as one would expect.
Friendliness: We did not find the staff to be particularly friendly (housekeeping, gardeners, etc) but this all changed as of the 2nd day after we had a word with the owners.
Room cleanliness: Our suite was clean. However, we had to call housekeeping 20 minutes after checking in to clean the dust from our wardrobe before we could unpack our clothes. The bathroom blinds were also covered in a thick layer of dust.
Privacy: Soon after check-in, a staff member unlocked our room door and came in without knocking or announcing himself.
Poolside service: Service around the pools and Jacuzzi was non-existent (absolutely no exaggeration). In the 8 days we were at the resort, not a single staff member came around the pools to tidy up or ask if we needed anything. The only time we saw any staff at the pool was when we ordered food or drinks. On our first day, we ordered hamburgers by the pool – our dirty dishes were never removed in the 3 hours that we stayed by the pool after we had eaten. On our 3rd last day the big rubbish bin by the Jacuzzi was full. On the 2nd last day that bin was overflowing with rubbish – so much so that the lid would not close. When we checked out 2 days later, that bin was still not emptied. On the 4th day we witnessed 4 couples coming to the jacuzzi area but turning away because there were not enough sunbeds available despite there only being 3 guests at the jacuzzi. As with our experience at the large pool on the 1st day, some of the sunbeds appear to be taken as they were covered with pool towels but there were no staff present to clear towels, leaving the impression that the sunbeds are still in use.
Breakfast Buffet: The grated cheese had mold on it on the first two mornings. The problem was fixed after speaking to Khun Wa about it.
Spa: As part of our reservation package, we received about 50% off on a couples oil massage. The massage was good and the masseuses were friendly. The venue could do with a clean though. There were cobwebs with dead insects in the lounge area, and the glass shelves boasted a layer of dust.
In general: Our initial feeling was one of moderate disappointment but the feeling soon changed after voicing our concerns with management. As of the 2nd day things got better and better and we truly had a wonderful stay. Here comes the good stuff.
Our goal with this vacation was to relax – and we did just that. The resort was beautifully quiet and exhumed tranquility and peacefulness.
The staff took care of us very well during our stay – however, I wonder if this would have been the case had we not spoken to management on the 2nd day.
During our stay: We had a romantic dinner at the resort restaurant, and another romantic dinner set up for us on our terrace. On both occasions, the staff (specifically Khun Tiamjun and Khun Wa) did an absolutely fantastic job of making the table look very beautiful with fresh flowers, candles and elegant table settings. Their efforts far surpassed our expectations. We received a complimentary bottle of wine and a bottle of sparkling wine during our stay. We asked for bread with two of our room service orders – the resort gave it to us at no charge and still made some effort to make the presentation thereof look good.
A complimentary set dinner for 2 was part of our reservation package. We were very pleasantly surprised by the quality and quantity of the 4-course meal. Being a complimentary offer – we were not expecting much but, we were delighted at how truly fantastic that meal and ambiance was. Thank you Katiliya.
F&B: I can recommend the sea bass steak, blueberry cheesecake with vanilla ice cream, Caesar salad, spinach soup, pork spare ribs, cheese burgers, Katiliya pizza, and beef khao soi – which was all really delicious. Room service was pretty fast every time BUT, I recommend for you to stress very explicitly that the food must be hot. Our first order was cold, but subsequent orders were warm/hot when asked them for hot food. The breakfast buffet was good. We had the same ‘essentials’ every morning together with a couple of changes. The bacon was good. The resort boast their own homemade yogurt which is truly delicious. They also have yummy homemade bread. Service at breakfast was particularly good, and together with the beautiful view, this is a perfect start to your day. Be warned that room service is not 24 hours and it would be a far way to go to the nearest shop.
Accommodation: We had a ‘Mountain View Suite’ – room 211. It’s on the top floor of Block B. Our room was VERY spacious with the most incredible and generously sized terrace which boasted 2 deck chairs, 2 high chairs and a table, and still there was plenty of space to move around.
Sleep comfort: Our bed was huge and very comfortable. The pillows were probably the most comfortable soft pillows we’ve ever slept on (I’m a hotel auditor – believe me when I say I sleep on many hotel pillows).
Facilities: The jacuzzi and heated pool was our favorite spot. It is a tranquil space and free of distractions. We spent almost a full 7 hours there on the 5th day – just the 2 of us. Literally no other guest was anywhere near us (unfortunately no staff either). Grab the green pool towels – they are huge and cover the entire deckchair. The lobby/bar area boasts a large fireplace which is lit every night – a perfect place to have a cocktail or read a book. There is a library in the lobby which has some books (not many). I would suggest that you take your own book. The library also has some DVDs but, they are not organized or controlled in any way.
Special arrangements: I had specific instructions for the birthday cake I wanted. Khun Ae even went to the bakery in town and sent me a couple of photos to choose from. The resort also arranged a beautiful bouquet of flowers for me, and decorated our bed for the special occasion.
Special thanks: We’d like to thank Lisa (owner), Tanawat (server at the restaurant), Khun Ae (reservations manager), Khun Wa and Khun Tiamjun (managers at restaurant) for making our stay at Katiliy an exceptional one.
Touch points to improve on:
1) Have staff make regular visits to the pool and Jacuzzi areas.
2) Improve welcome at check-in
This resort is an experience in its own. You can just be in this resort and enjoy it's services and offerings. Great rooms, nice heated pool and jacuzzi, great views and fantastic food. It's a must visit place when you are touring the North Thailand circuit.