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Thailand - Khao Lak and Bangkok 2018


Our flight to Phuket, en-route to Khao Lak, was very good and on time. We had good refreshments served (how does Bangkok Airways manage this on short flights?) and was further enhanced by chatting to a Dutch girl, travelling to meet a friend, who came from an area of the Netherlands that we knew quite well, Brouwershaven on the Grevelingen where our friends moored their yacht for several years.

The flight passed very quickly and we were soon retrieving our cases and seeking out our pre-booked transport for the drive to our hotel, La Vela, in Khao Lak. The driver was very good and we were able to enjoy the scenery, rather than to worry as we had done on our journey from Bangkok to Hua Hin!

2018 - La Vela Khao Lak Bedroom
2018 - La Vela Khao Lak Beach

2018 Thailand - La Vela Khao Lak Bedroom

2018 Thailand - La Vela Khao Lak Beach

The check-in at the stylish looking La Vela was fast and efficient and we were soon taken to our top floor, pool-view, room with a view out to sea. The room was very large, stylish and comfortable with a nice view from the veranda, both out to sea and with excellent view to the hills to the North West of the hotel. We had decided to unpack our cases and the eat in the hotel's advertised Thai restaurant, but found that this was closed, so we had a choice of the Beach Club or room service. What an error! There was a rather limited room service menu and we rashly decided on Cheeseburger and fries. The food arrived as a bun with goodness only knows what inside, dripping in oil with a few cold fries. It took Janet's stomach several days to recover from the effects of trying the "burger" and, despite eating very little of it (we returned the meal), she was quite ill!

Despite great apologies from management and assurances that we would not be charged for this inedible mess, we later noted that it was still on the bill when we checked out!

2018 - La Vela Khao Lak Sundown over Pool
2018 - La Vela Khao Lak Sunset looking out to Sea

2018 Thailand - La Vela Khao Lak Sundown over Pool

2018 Thailand - La Vela Khao Lak Sunset looking out to Sea

With Janet feeling decidedly under the weather we tried the beach which was beautiful but which, following new Thai Government directives about sun-loungers and other amenities on the beach, could not be fully enjoyed. The area of the hotel near the sea was the beach club where, despite instructions and assurances to the contrary, all available beds were reserved at the crack of dawn. After the first day we decided to use the main pool, below our room on a daily basis. Despite having few loungers, we always managed to get beds and shades and enjoyed this area immensely. We had intended to go on trips, but following Janet's few days of stomach upset, I developed a cough and we never felt like venturing far or being too energetic during the day time and made good use of the hotel pool! In the evenings we wandered the short distance into the village and enjoyed the relatively in expensive fare available. We opted for Italian food, initially, but then had some enjoyable meals in other restaurants, the most notable of which were the "fusion" restaurants - the poorly named "Joe's Kitchen" where the service was good and the food was far better and varied than you would imagine and the "Green Pepper" which just had the edge and where the cocktails were well priced and very good!

On our final night it rained and we chose to remain in the hotel and eat in the Beach Club. We were (just) able to get a table and dined well, probably drinking too much Prosecco and finishing with the most unusual Singapore Slings that any true mixologist would have been ashamed to put into a glass. Nevertheless, after copious Prosecco, we could see the funny side! All in all, an enjoyable (if expensive) evening!

We headed for the airport, the following morning, noticing that the refund for the initial "burger" meal had not been made, but we were in too much of a hurry to check out and be off to the airport. The drive to Phuket and the flight to Bangkok were both fine, but we had had enough of transfers now!

2018 Khao Lak - Joes Kitchen
2018 Khao Lak - Green Pepper

2018 Thailand - Khao Lak - Joes Kitchen

2018 Thailand - Khao Lak - Green Pepper

We arrived at Suvarnabhumi on time, found our transport with no problems and were off to Sukhumvit Road and our hotel very swiftly. Unfortunately we met fairly heavy traffic and the journey took about an hour. Fortunately the check-in at the hotel, Four Points, was very slick and we found that they were part of the Sheraton group, so my SPG card, last used many years before in Krabi, came in handy. We were allocated a nice quiet room overlooking some gardens at the rear of the building and decided to visit one of our favourite Bangkok restaurants which happened to be nearby - Monsoon! The meal was excellent - traditional (Tee Hee!) French Onion soup followed by lamb chops and then creme brule - all washed down with GnT, followed by Prosecco and followed by cocktails - an excellent meal!

The following morning we had a good English / American breakfast and decided that we would certainly use this hotel again. The location was very good, the accommodation very good, the food very good and price very good!

The transfer to the airport was on-time, the journey very quick (Sunday morning) and the EVA lounge, as usual, was fine. Our flight back to UK, however, was rather spoilt by the child seated in front of us (about 4 years old). The parents played a blinder as there are only 2 seats together in this part of the aircraft. The child and one parent were always in front of us while the other parent occupied a seat 2 rows behind - always one resting. We were not so fortunate and despite noise cancelling headphones we were constantly disturbed by noise, lights and movement. Unfortunately, the Taiwanese cabin crew were not able / unwilling to control the parents. This was probably the worst flight that I have ever experienced and far worse than travelling in economy!

2018 Bangkok - Four Points
2018 March Bangkok - Monsoon

2018 Thailand - Bangkok March - Four Points

2018 Thailand - Bangkok March - Monsoon

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