Nestled along a quiet but somewhat rocky stretch of beach at Ao Kao's eastern end, this popular resort is like a museum of past and present Thai architectural styles.
The cheapest A-frame bungalows blend hardwood floors with white wooden walls, vintage furnishings, tall windows and roofs decorated with Lanna (northern Thai) woodcarvings. Made entirely of wood, larger villas boast a traditional central Thai design that features elegant gabled roofs. While perfectly comfy, the one-bedroom cottages don't have quite so much character -- we guess they're Thailand circa 1989 -- thanks to tile floors and industrial-style sliding windows. Built in the “contemporary Thai” style that (of course) relies on no shortage of polished concrete, the newest “honeymoon suites” are quite stunning with their glossy hardwood floors, wall-size windows, high quality modern furnishings, polished concrete bathrooms with rain showerheads and outdoor stairways leading up to private rooftop terraces sheltered by thatched awnings. All rooms come with air-con, flatscreen TV, DVD player, safe and porch. In addition to the restaurant/bar and massage area you'll find billiards, foosball and ping-pong tables, a trampoline and life-size chessboard. The only thing missing is a swimming pool. If you like the idea of a complete beach resort package, but want a more central location and a pool, the larger Makathanee Resort isn't a bad choice further down the beach. On the other side of Ao Kao Resort, Lazy Days is another solid midrange choice but with fewer extras.
By David Luekens
Last updated on 3rd February, 2016.