The face of Haad Farang
Stretching almost for the entire length of Haad Farang under coconut and umbrella trees, long-running Charlie Resort seems to pull everything in its direction. Even if you're not staying here, you'll probably have to walk through the fairly large resort any time you go to the beach.
The majority of rooms are concrete air-con villas, some with direct sea views. The one we peeped in had a faint musty smell and some mould on the bathroom sink, but otherwise was spacious, clean and inviting with tile floors, small wall-mounted LCD TV, fridge, good-size hot-water bathroom and quality linens on the soft bed. A framed portrait of the Thai water goddess hung from the wall and the large porch comes with wooden furniture. If going the air-con route, ask for a room away from where the motorbikes park.
While the fan-cooled bamboo bungalows are better than what you'll find elsewhere, the value is questionable. Good-quality mattresses sit on the floor under mosquito nets, and clean cold-water bathrooms have flush toilets, sinks and shower curtains. Mini-fridges and safes are also included, but a couple of axe pillows are the only furniture; we wish they’d get some hammocks for the porches so that guests can actually enjoy the sea views.
These bungalows are on a prime spot overlooking the centre of the beach and within steps of the pool and bar—throw in complimentary breakfast and you begin to understand why they go for twice the price of similar digs elsewhere.
Charlie has a small army of pink-and-purple clad staffers and we found reception to be friendly and patient, though service in the pricey restaurant tends to be slow and impersonal unless you’re a long-stay guest. Facilities include a pool, minimart and Thai massage. Prices are inflated across the board and the beach chairs cost a ridiculous 50 baht per day even if you stay here. Charlie is the only real beach resort on this side of the island and it remains popular with older repeat guests, mostly Europeans.
By David Luekens
Last updated on 14th March, 2017.
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