The increasing profile of Krabi as a tourism destination has led to Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi carrying out a complete upgrade of its 192 rooms and villas. The resort hotel was one of the first five-star resorts in Krabi, having opened in 2006.
ETurboNews caught up with David Martens, General Manager of the Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi, to find out what work is being done on this already spectacular resort.
eTurboNews: Krabi has become a very successful resort destination in Thailand, and the Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas is already ranked as a five-star property. Why the upgrades?
David Martens: There is a popular phrase, “If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it,” but we don’t believe in that; we don’t like resting on our achievements. Centara Hotels & Resorts is constantly working to make their properties better and better, especially the more popular ones.
eTN: What plans are in store for your Krabi resort?
DM: The first phase will see 102 rooms completed by the middle of July, to be followed by the remainder under phase two. All upgrades are scheduled to be completed by October 18, 2013.
eTN: What is making Krabi such a popular destination?
DM: The Krabi region actually has a very wide appeal, because there are plenty of adventure opportunities such as scuba diving, trekking, and rock climbing. Access is easy from either Krabi or Phuket airports. We are only 30 minutes from Krabi Airport, and a few minutes’ drive from the town of Ao Nang. The Krabi area is still regarded as a relatively new destination with lots of potential and worth the investment to upgrade.
eTN: What do you think makes Centara’s properties in Krabi stand out?
DM: The location of our resort has resulted in it becoming a centerpiece for Krabi’s tourism industry. It is set in its own small bay and consequently enjoys 500 meters of its own exclusive beach frontage. Access is via a trail through national parkland or via a ten-minute speedboat ride, so there is a very peaceful, exclusive atmosphere here for our guests.
In addition to the Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi, we also have the Centara Anda Dhevi Resort & Spa Krabi, which opened in late 2011.
eTN: Do you feel the style of your property is an important factor in why it has become so popular?
DM: Yes, very much so. We have retained a traditional Thai architectural style designed as a cluster of low-rise buildings and individual villas. The resort has 192 luxury garden view and ocean-facing rooms and private villas, and there are 125 king-bedded deluxe rooms, with a private spa terrace as an available option, and 58 deluxe rooms with two double beds ideal for families.
One can really stretch out and relax at our property. The minimum size of the deluxe rooms is 72 square meters, and the nine one-bedroom and two-bedroom beachfront villas include an extensive terrace, and lounging and dining areas that provide all the comforts of home.
eTN: What types of amenities are available at your resort?
DM: The resort offers an extensive range of bars, restaurants, a gift shop, and our facilities include a Spa Cenvaree, a fitness center, and a PADI dive and water sports center. It is a family-friendly property, and the resort has a fully-supervised kids’ club with separate areas for youngsters and the teens.
eTN: Can you share with our readers what specific upgrades are in store for your resort?
DM: The resort is going to have a new color scheme. It will be a combination of coral blue and orange tones to reflect the color of the water in Paipong Bay in front of the resort as well as the colors of the limestone mountains and cliffs that surrounding the resort in the rear.
We have also increased the number of Spa rooms in our inventory. These rooms have Jacuzzis on their balcony where guests may enjoy a relaxing massage by the Jacuzzi jets while enjoying the view overlooking the Andaman Sea. These are extremely popular, and most of the year it is the first room types to sell out. We have added another 8 of these rooms to our inventory increasing the total spa rooms to 59 in the resort.
In addition to the new color scheme, we have also updated all the televisions in the room with flat-screen LCDs, and new taps and sanitary ware throughout the bathrooms.
eTN: What types of guests are drawn to your property?
DM: Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi is a very popular hotel with honeymooners and families. The resort has been growing in popularity year on year with occupancy rates growing every single year. The resort has now been in operation for 7 years, and the reason we are upgrading the rooms is to make sure they stay looking fresh.
eTN: Thank you for taking the time to speak with us about your resort. Is there anything you would like to add?
DM: Centara believes that upgrading the rooms at our five-star resort helps in promoting the image of Krabi as a desirable destination for a wide cross-section of travelers, and we are pleased to do our part to increase the visibility of this area of Thailand.