Pricey beachfront rooms
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Ping Chan went through a complete redevelopment in 2015, bulldozing the old budget huts and replacing them with quite swanky large bungalows making it the most upmarket option on Thong Nai Pan Yai proper.
Considerable effort has gone into the rooms and the beachfront option we took a look through was a very smart affair. A large deck (no hammock unfortunately) overlooks the beach and the bed sits behind sliding tinted glass doors. The tint is a good indicator of attention to detail here as it delivers privacy (at least during the day) without needing to close the curtains (and lose the view).
Rooms are decorated with a flourish with the bedheads bearing attractive large motif designs. There is plenty of space to swing a cat and shelving is well located on the way to the bathroom, ideal for unpacking into for longer stays. The room we were shown had a very well executed open to the sky garden bathroom at rear, with a lush garden already growing well.
The bungalows are in a few rows running parallel to Thong Nai Pan Yai beach and are staggered so that the second row gets at least a partial seaview. There is a small sized round swimming pool by the beach bar, but we were a bit underwhelmed by it given the relative luxury of the rooms.
The oddest factor about Ping Chan is the beach bar which lacks the snazzy appeal of the rooms (the food also gets some pretty mixed reviews – no great problem there as there are plenty of other places to eat in Thong Nai Pan). It is strange that more effort wasn't put into the bar area when the rest of the resort was so completely renovated. At least there is a large shade tree with plenty of axe cushions and low slung tables spread around under it, making for a comfortable area to relax in.
Even given the relative luxury, rates are high, with the beachfront rooms being the most expensive we looked at on Thong Nai Pan Yai proper (though still considerably cheaper than Panviman out on the rocky headland), but if you're looking for creature comforts and it fits your budget, this is a good choice. Friends who were staying here (and who graciously showed us their beachfront room) were happy with it. Be sure to search online for a competitive rate.
Check rates at Ping Chan Koh Pha Ngan Beach Resort - rated 9.8/10 on Agoda.com.
Check rates at Ping Chan Koh Pha Ngan Beach Resort on Booking.com.
By Stuart McDonald
Last updated on 18th October, 2016.