Pai Plong Bay’s long golden sand beach sparkles in the sunlight. Towering palms line the beachfront. Teal coloured rooftops of the resort’s low-rise buildings blend with the verdant tropical jungle surrounds. A 400 plus meter high limestone cliff wall curves from one end of the bay to the other. Glistening in shades of rust reds, golds, and greys, it provides a dominating backdrop.
Arriving at Centara Grand Beach Resort Krabi by boat, it feels like we are coming to an island. The resort’s shuttle speed boat whisked us from Ao Nang’s Nopparat Thara Pier to Pai Plong Bay, exclusively occupied by Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi. We realise that those imposing limestone cliffs are all that separate us from neighbouring Ao Nang.
Making our way off the pontoon, staff greet and escort arrivals to the open-air hotel Lobby while boat and concierge staff take care of the luggage. Temperature checks, masks, and social distancing are de rigueur, while chilled towels and refreshing rosella juice are signs of Centara’s renowned hospitality.
Retaining a traditionally Thai architectural style and designed as a cluster of low-rise buildings and villas, the resort has 192 luxury garden view, ocean-facing rooms. All guestrooms have a furnished balcony or terrace, and most room categories offer a king-sized bed or two double beds, which are ideal for families. Providing a sense of room for relaxing, most guest accommodations offer a combined living space ranging from 72 square metres.
Private villas start at 96 sqm, with beachfront villas featuring an extensive terrace, lounging and dining areas, and luxurious amenities. The Royal Villa set on the hilltop, with spectacular views of the Pai Plong Bay and beyond, offers an opulent two-bedroom, two-bathroom, 359 sqm of indoor and outdoor living space, plus your own jacuzzi and private 40 sqm pool. This is the ultimate holiday haven.
Our Ocean Facing Spa Deluxe room offers luxurious space, including a private front balcony complete with an outdoor jacuzzi and comfortable sun loungers. A covered side patio with a single day bed completes the outdoor space. Inside the room, front and side walls of floor-to-ceiling glass mean the stunning ocean views are ever-present, while the retractable timber slat blinds allow additional privacy when desired. Polished timber floorboards add underfoot indulgence, while the expansive open-plan travertine tiled bathroom with its rain shower and full-sized stand-alone bathtub demand attention and extra relaxation time.
Some rooms and villas come with complimentary access to Centara’s The Club. A private Club Lounge offering exclusive facilities and services, including refreshments, snacks, and light meal presentations served daily. This is worth asking about when booking.
Beach and water-focused recreational activities are top ways to spend your time with the resort’s 500-meter-long unspoiled sandy beach, an excellent starting place. Join the early morning yoga or tai chi classes. Chill on the rope swing hanging from a giant Sea Almond tree. Enjoy an ocean swim in the turquoise water, use your sandcastle building skills, or join the beach soccer late afternoons.
Stand Up Paddle (SUP) lessons are on offer. Alternately, you can hire one of the resort’s kayaks or SUP boards to explore Pai Plong Bay and limestone cliffs. For the competent kayaker, you could even visit neighbouring Tonsai Beach. Hobbie Cats are also available if you prefer the wind to provide propulsion.
Hanging out in or lazing around the expansive three-tiered resort pool could be an alternative or lounging on the beach facing sunbeds. The resort’s fully-equipped fitness centre is available for those needing to expend more energy or keep their routines going.
Boating day trips can take you to some of the most spectacular islands in this region of Krabi. These tours often provide opportunities for swimming and snorkelling along the way, plus lunch. Choose from trips like the Phi Phi islands, the Four Islands tour, including neighbouring Railay Beach, or the Hong archipelago with Hong Island and its glorious white sandy beach and lagoon as highlights. The resort’s Discovery Desk has all the details.
A Kids Club is available for the little ones, complete with a schedule of activities. A separate E-zone is an excellent place for kids of all ages to hang out and amuse themselves. The Library is ideal for those seeking a quiet and contemplative space away from the sun and great outdoors. While the Resort Shop may have that little something that you just can’t leave on the shelves.
To fuel you up or replace expended energy, the resort offers a great choice of quality dining options from traditional Thai to international favourites. Start your day with a nourishing breakfast buffet of local and international favourites at Lotus Court. Dining is alfresco on the deck overlooking the lagoon or indoors.
COAST Bistro is ideally situated pool and beachside, providing a casual dining experience for lunch, dinner, or in-between snacks. Shaded by Casuarina and Sea Almond trees, this is toes in the sand eating with panoramic views of Pai Plong Bay. COAST is also an ideal spot for sundowners as this west-facing beach can deliver spectacular sunsets.
For guests looking to savour authentic Thai recipes, Suan Bua serves up an original selection of Southern Thai dishes combining traditional culinary techniques and locally sourced ingredients. We recommend seafood prepared Thai-style, for example, the Whole Fried Sea Bass with spicy Thai herbs.
Serving up classic and contemporary Japanese cuisine, Hagi features full-flavoured dishes in a cosy setting amid lush gardens. Indulge in authentic Japanese crafted with seasonal ingredients from fresh sashimi to the crunch of tempura or the theatre of live teppanyaki.
For that uniquely memorable or romantic experience, dine in a quiet candlelit enclave on the beach and under the stars – just you and your loved one or that special intimate group. Simply select your choice of three-course menus, and your private butler will take care of everything for you.
On resort, SPA Cenvaree provides a tranquil sanctuary for restoring inner balance, rejuvenation, and wellness. It offers over 50 holistic therapies and healing rituals, including Ayurvedic programmes, beauty facials, muscle-soothing massages, and spa journeys for couples. SPA Cenvaree has seven spa suites and a separate space for reflexology and Thai massages. There is also an outdoor relaxation area for you to rest and unwind after your treatment.
Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi could easily be described in several ways. For couples and honeymooners, it’s an ideal hideaway. For families or groups who adore the ocean and unspoiled nature, it provides a perfect base. And for those needing tranquillity and privacy, the resort is a sublime retreat. No matter your reason for visiting, we’re confident it will meet your needs.
Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Krabi
396-396/1 Moo 2, Ao Nang, Muang, Krabi 81180 Thailand
Phone: (+66) 7-563-7789