Saturday, May 24, 2014


Angsana Laguna, Phuket is located in scenic Bang Tao Bay, Phuket’s most coveted resort address.
Just 20 minutes from bustling Phuket Town
and the Phuket International Airport,
lies the contemporary beachfront resort
with unrivalled access to the emerald waters
of the Andaman Sea.

Angsana Laguna Phuket features vibrant and stylish rooms and facilities designed for the dynamic cosmopolitan traveller. Rust and lavender are its hues giving you that relaxed, earthly feel as it nestles on the green landscape in the middle of the blue waters giving you an oasis in a lagoon as you view it from the top.

Angsana Laguna, Phuket
(top view)

If you'd see the date at the bottom, it was booked on
October 3 when our flight is Nov. 7-12...
My husband who hated flying opted for a 2 hour trip at least for our honeymoon and so I ended up researching on good places to stay in Phuket. I stumbled into this serene resort offering the best package for the whole 7 days we have to spare. With full trust in ZUJI, I checked their package online and it offered a Laguna Room overlooking different views depending on your liking: the beach-designed common pool, the lagoon or the beautiful landscape that surrounds the resort, not to mention it comes with daily breakfast. As the countdown approaches to our actual trip, I always check out the photos which made my anticipation truly at its highest level.

But an omen makes its debut...

Three days before we depart, I checked on our booking, reservations and transportation when Angsana Laguna's reception desk itself, gave me a totally stressful time saying our booking doesn't exist, there's no such reference number and that they are not partners with ZUJI! I was so furious. I booked it a month ago?! So, I had to call ZUJI in between my shows and there you go, ZUJI to the rescue, cleared it out, contacted me back and gave me a go signal once again that Angsana just misunderstood the reservation process. I must say that wasn't a good start already on the resort's behalf. In an attempt not to dwell on the negative, I had let it go. Anyway, it was amended by the staff and everything went fine.

We flew in via Thai Airways. And I give that airlines 5 stars for their service. I never liked airplane food but they served it with good bread and dessert. The flight crew was genuinely accommodating and can speak good, proper English. The comfort that goes with it was superb (not bad for ECONOMY class). The interior is already good as far as how the seats are wide enough but the colors whisper the word "RELAX..." and that's what most of the airlines lack. You see, I have to emphasize on the "comfotable seats" because my husband is a Samoan and he always complains about it and this is one of the reasons why he hates flying. Without bias, I recommend this airline for your 3 hour, 23 minutes of flying from Hong Kong to Phuket. It will be worth your every penny. We didn't experience any delays to and from Hong Kong too.

Thai Airways - Economy Class
They don't force 4 seats in the middle, hence giving more
space for people in the Economy Class to feel more comfortable.
Phuket Airport, is swarmed with taxi services, package stays that are truly tempting and it's up to you if you'd go for it or not. Most have booked it online before they left their country of origin but my husband and I had set ourselves to a "go-with-the-flow" move. We didn't want to program our day as the tours dictate (leaving early in the morning to go see the islands, reserve an entire day for tour or choosing the shows to watch right then and there). We exchanged our moola first to Thai Baht and we are very much surprised that their rates are even better than Hong Kong's. We regret exchanging a few thousands back here when it's hassle free to have it changed in Phuket.

Going out, all taxis in Phuket look like private vehicles. They have no meter and they just charge you with a fixed price. Depending on the location (and most probably, skin color or status - if you're a tourist or a local), there is a corresponding price as per trip. It is pretty pricey. One way from the airport maybe around 450 let's say to Patong Beach. But originally, it is just around 400 (during Novermber, 2013 experience), then 2 way is 700 if you're going to ride the same taxi. Our experience of the first taxi ride in Phuket got extended as our driver brought us to an agency that she probably gets commission from if her guests would book tourist packages from them. Yet again, my husband and I just wanted to settle first in the hotel. So, she had no luck with us. We had to request her to just go straight where we asked her to bring us the first time. Yes, drivers there are both women and men.

Upon reaching the hotel, a 10,000 Baht deposit was asked as identification had been checked corresponding to the reservation made. Just like how majority of the hotels are, they just had to collect deposit when our paper (printed confirmation for our reservation) "actually" said (sent by ZUJI),
  • "The package prices shown above do not include service charges, resort fees, child fees, or any other incidentals unless otherwise noted. Any incidental charges at your hotel (parking, phone calls, room service, energy, or any additional surcharges) will be handled directly between you and the hotel."
I always check stuff like this just to be sure so I followed it. We didn't set aside an additional 10k Baht for it so we had to spare some of our cash for the said amount. It was all good because we thought it's going to be easy to do room service with it anyways. We just had to change our money again once we get in the city.

Here we go, welcoming drinks were given as they prepared the room for us. That was H-E-A-V-E-N!!! Anklets were given for a souvenir and we were given hot facial towels. The drink was Thailand's rose lavender tea - very very refreshing! From Thai aiways, all the way to Angsana Laguna Phuket the hues: brown, purple combined with the sea, the sand and the sun is very very relaxing for me. Hogan said the place looked nice. Though as we were brought to our room, we noticed something old about the interior and that somehow of the entire building. We're sure it's newly built but so many parts of it aren't maintained and were not well kept.

The biggest disappointment happened (and this was during the first day). The idea is, we are on our HONEYMOON for crying out loud and this was how the beds were.

Twin beds on our honeymoon? So SWEET!!!! Hahahaha!
So we called the front desk immediately and had asked to change it. Options were, to change it into a king sized bed or transfer us to another "Laguna Room". The next call said the only option is to bring the beds together since they have no available king sized bed at the moment and that all Laguna rooms are occupied. But I made them understand that how can this be when I did the reservation a month ago. They reasoned out to us that the particular time we are there is considered the peak amongst Russian visitors. So, the 40 sqm Deluxe Laguna room that we found so inviting upon booking was not given justice when we got there. Most of the time, we can't help but just go, "OHMMMMM!!!!" Hahahaha! Additional expectation had gone downscale when some of the amenities didn't meet our satisfaction meter either. Here is a copied list from their website of the said amenities:

•40 LCD TV

•Audio system

•Dual line telephone (inclusive of voice mail) / IDD Telephone

•Unlimited High-Speed Wireless Internet Access

•In-room electronic safe


This was how it was presented beautifully online.
•Tea and coffee-making facilities


•Bathrobes and slippers

•Complimentary daily newspaper (local)

•24 Hour room service

•Complimentary bottled water

•Pillow selection menu

•Angsana Signature Collection Amenities

•Writing Desk

•Private furnished balcony

•Nightly turndown service

•Individually controlled air conditioning and ceiling fan

•Sealy Posturepedic mattress

•Floor to ceiling sliding window doors

•Sunken bathtub (selected rooms)

•Non-smoking rooms available

Allow me to mention specially the following:

Their pouch was complete
and hotels which uses Colgate for
their toothpaste supply is always
a thumbs up for me.
Posturepedic mattresses are a zero. Since they had to put together the beds, we had to sleep uncomfortably for the whole stay because of the gap. We were together when we were about the sleep but come morning of the next day, we are separated already owning our good side of the bed, which is far apart. Unacceptable most especially if your guests had booked it for their honeymoon and a month ahead.

Tea and coffe - making facilities were nowhere to be found.

We were never given no pillow selection moment;

nor no delivery of daily newspaper happened.

Angsana Signature Collection Amenities were rad I must say. They were checked everyday and refilled everyday. They had left instructions asking to leave the pouch behind though so, I realized, there was really no signatured amenity, was there? Because all of those were disposable anyways. The towelette? No, you can't take that.

Slippers that were given were old and was used before I'm sure. Being labeled as a 5 star resort/hotel, it should at least be wrapped in a dry cloth labeled, ""SANITIZED" but, it was pretty "maputim" (English translation: Beige in colour but has that blackish look around the edges).

Not included in the list that we found faulty were the bedside lamps (which needed repair so badly), hair dryer (so old, it smells like it's burning when used) and the Elephant displays that you may notice to be hanged over the bed's head board. They light up when you put out all the lights. But the other one on the right when we were there was not working at all. Sigh.... I was patient that time but my husband was saying, "Oh no! You just gave my wife something to write." And I just laughed.

We ordered room service to calm us down and we planned to go out to the mall for dinner for our first night. Hogan started becoming comfortable and he checked the bar right away, went for a dip in the pool while I plug our laptop to check the internet connection and to put on some party music. Unpacked, showered, took some photos and checked itineraries online. I also planned a day for us to check the place. My husband and I were pretty booked the entire Halloween with a lot of shows 'til midnight before this vacation had happened. We know that we have the whole 7 days for it so we really reserved a day to check on what's good to see, eat and witness in Phuket upon reaching our hotel rather than spend a lot of time doing that at home. Our maid in honour, Aima and her family too were coming to Phuket so we reserved a day to get together with them for her birthday. So all set with itineraries. All of a sudden, room service comes offering this at hand with the apologetic card.

I find it sincere, yes. But we are talking about a 5-star hotel and as I am knowledgeable that there are 184 Laguna Rooms all over the resort, it was pretty disappointing that they can't even transfer us into a better room. My husband doesn't even like wine. So, yes, 3/4's were mine alone. I was also thinking what if we were totally non-alcoholic drinkers? It didn't solve that much dissatisfaction with just a bottle wine, did it?

Happy on your honeymoon?
I find it as a commanding statement.
It ain't wishing us a happy one at all.
Seriously, I personally thought of asking for a reimbursement and just go and rebook another venue but, it was prepaid already and it stated in our documents that it emphasised about the NO RETURN, NO EXCHANGE POLICY. It left us with no choice. And speaking of having no choice, every time they would clean the room, they always leave this "Save the Earth" souvenir. I think they left 3 or 4 in our room. I thought that was a token since we faithfully kept our hotel towels well hanged since we wanted to be environment friendly. We didn't know it was this "Green Imperative Fund" worth 30 Baht in our bill. I find it a scam because of the very nature that we didn't choose to have that, nor were we oriented about this. My husband just let go of it instead of it being a source of STRESS!

But then we can't control the situation,
let's control how we look at it.

I took a breather so Hogan and I went and hang by the veranda, a beautiful view awaits. A swimming pool surrounds the entire resort and gives it the lagoon vibe. Complete with cozy sunbathing chairs where you can lounge on to get a good sun, a bar also was built in the middle for easy access to cater you with refreshments. We loved it particularly because of the barista that served us. And you need not worry about bringing cash with you as you can just charge it up to your hotel room tab.

Coming out of our veranda, this is our view from center to the right side.
The bar in the middle of the extensive pool's length.
Visible from the room.
Photo op with the baby elephant having a morning stroll around the resort.
Our first day had passed and the next morning, we went and check out the breakfast buffet. Russians swarmed the place. It was a pretty setup most especially when the sun shines bright and welcomes you along with the blue lagoon. You can choose a romantic spot for two outdoors or get hold of the wide array of food indoors as you sit closely by it. I was continuously researching on my husband's thoughts and expectations.  He said, the food was basically the same everyday. I enjoyed it since I went for different choices every morning. Compared to him, he always resorts to eating bacon, omelette and fruits. Probably he didn't see anything that much appealing but congee, oatmeal and different kinds of bread were served. Which he has no preference of. Angsana is popular amongst families going on holidays because of the fun experiences that await not only the adults but also the kids. If you are a morning person, there may be a chance for you to encounter their pet baby elephants that go for a walk, shower and feeding during this time of the day and late afternoon. That was actually something you don't see everyday. They are playful as well and are harmless. We could tell that they are very well taken care of and are not restrained in any way so we were alright with that. Both my Hogan and I are animal lovers and we hate animal abuse of any sort. Breakfast is served from 6-10am. The good points go to the full out choices for juices, bread and freshly cooked omelette.

The resort's interior is amazing and so were the spa treatments. With staff pursuing you to buy Angsana properties every morning though were annoying. But in general, we loved our stay there. It's not about anything else but it was a fun relaxing time with my husband and we are more than grateful for having a smooth, safe trip. We were hesitant to post pictures back then because the Haiyan typhoon was happening at the same time.

Like how I described it earlier, it is a huge resort. You can book this ride at the frot desk (first come, first served) if you desire to go to a restaurant or any location within the vicinity.

The lagoon stretches out to 4 to 5 mini piers with 2 bamboo rafts sailing every 20 minutes to bring you to different sides of the resort. We tried to ride it to get into the beach front and it was again a very relaxing experience. It makes you forget the fast paced life of the city and it calms your mind and body with all the trees and clear waters at view.

Here are the other memorable shots around the resort.

This was late in the afternoon when we spotted the baby elephant
playing with the people by the volleyball court.
I was actually scared to go near because it was so playful
at that time so I just had the just with him in the background.
We don't want a honeymoon turned disastrous Hahahaha!

With Aima, our maid of honour by our veranda.
November babies ready to watch Phuket Phantasea.

Behind Hogan is the lounge bar.
It plays super mellow music at night even on a Saturday.
A resort for the "family" - check!
No LOUD music.

Infinity pool

Safety precautions is a must.
So, this was an A+.


Room service is always the best!

This is a stairway that extends from the lobby to
an outdoor view of the resort extending to the beach.
Very good place for meditation, reflection
and photo op. Hehehehe!

Angsana lobby
Now, we are expecting our baby and my husband said, he would want to come back and give it another chance. He likes how serene it is. We both took the opportunity to relax from work and it helped us gain strength in preparation for our little budding family. Rest from those 7 days did us both good since we really planned for a little one during the same month.

Last night of seafood indulgence by the beach.
Frankly, if you'd book Angsana, you would want to be ready with your cash at hand. It takes a taxi ride to go to destinations outside the resort. So, access to money exchange with desired rate may be limited. They have an international atm machine within the vicinity though. But of course, to avoid international fees to be paid upon atm card usage, bringing right amount of cash is still better.

If you're going to ride the taxi every time, it wouldn't be so practical. There was a mentioned shuttle service but this just covers the entirety of the whole 4 resorts but if you'd go to Patong and everywhere else, you may have to take a cab or a tuktuk outside the resort's gates. 

Souvenir shops were also at bay. There are old women offering massage services that may cost from 200-700 Baht depending on the kind of massage you want. The setup is the same as how they have in Boracay.

This is how the beach looks like by Angsana, very very beautiful.
Also, restaurants inside Angsana Laguna are costly while the pub restaurants by the beach (which is already outside its borders) offer delicious seafood meals and authentic Thai delicacies. It's also a bonus that you don't just engulf good seafood but also, the serenity the seaside offers. The sound of the waves are soothing, the cold wind mesmerising, and my husband was a beautiful sight so the time given to us to spend there is incomparable. It's actually our first trip that it's just us alone. It's usually with friends or to visit family.

So, to some of you who probably may have stumbled on this post researching about Angsana Laguna, Phuket, I have pretty much shared the stuff you needed to know. This was just really too long to put in the reviews at Tripadvisor so... there you go! It's that season of holiday trips again and you might consider Phuket as your next destination. Post about the activities we did will come soon.

Related posts:
1. BORACAY 2013 - Our stay at Microtel, Boracay
2. THE GROVE - a movie experience around L.A.
3. 10 THINGS I LOVE ABOUT HONG KONG - How I see it while living here for 7 years now.

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