Review: JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort & Spa (Duplex Suite)

Cheapest nightly rate: 3,150 THB (3,739 after tax)
When to book: Seven months in advance

This huge resort holds one of longest pools in the world. You can literally swim from your room to the lobby, gym, restaurant and spa if you want. It has exchanged hands multiple times in the past. It has been called Novotel Coralia Magic Lagoon, Sofitel Magic Lagoon, Kempinski Beach Resort, Rixos Premium Resort, Cher Fah Resort and JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort & Spa since July 2014. It was tragically hit by the devastating tsunami in December 2004 when it was under the management of Sofitel. The amount of restoration work that has taken place since that fateful day is pretty incredible.

Resort map of JW Marriott Khao Lak
Resort map of JW Marriott Khao Lak

Arrival

I arrived by car from Phuket International Airport. The northward drive took about 1 hour and 30 minutes and traffic was clear all the way. Huge contrast to what it could have been if I drove south into Phuket instead. The are two parking areas. One near the lobby and another one near the tennis courts. Parking is free and I never had any trouble finding available space.

Entrance of JW Marriott Khao Lak
Entrance of JW Marriott Khao Lak
Beautiful driveway to the lobby
Beautiful driveway to the lobby
Small car park near the lobby
Small car park near the lobby
Drop off area and entrance to the lobby
Drop off area and entrance to the lobby
The beautiful lobby
The beautiful lobby

We were offered really refreshing towels and drinks at check-in. I was also offered a welcome gift choice of a snack plus one beverage or 1,000 points. This was probably the only time that I did not choose the points as my welcome gift. Scroll down to the welcome gifts below and you will know what I mean. As if the welcome gift is not enough, we were offered two drink coupons for each night for redemption at Czar Bar.

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Welcome gift for Platinum members
Welcome gift for Platinum members
Welcome letter for Platinum members
Welcome letter for Platinum members
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The suite (Duplex Suite)

As a Platinum member, I was also upgraded to the beautiful Duplex Suite! The staff also took the effort to decorate the room as they knew that my birthday was just a few days prior. Looking at the details, I could tell that it took them a lot of time. Outstanding first impression!

Duplex Suite 4130 in Wing 4
Duplex Suite 4130 in Wing 4
Dining area
Dining area
Living area
Living area
Decoration on my bed (HBD = Happy Birthday)
Decoration on my bed (HBD = Happy Birthday)
Pretty details
Pretty details
View from the upper level
View from the upper level
Tub and sink in the bathroom
Tub and sink in the bathroom
Aromatherapy Associates toiletries
Aromatherapy Associates toiletries
Shower and toilet
Shower and toilet
Welcome gift
Welcome gift
Close-up of the tasty banana muffins and juice
Close-up of the tasty banana muffins and juice

Czar Bar

Entrance of Czar Bar
Entrance of Czar Bar
Warm lighting in Czar Bar
Warm lighting in Czar Bar
Our tasty cocktails
Our tasty cocktails

Platinum members are offered complimentary daily breakfast for two at Waterfront.

Waterfront
Waterfront

Breakfast

Asian food in Waterfront
Asian food in Waterfront
Asian food buffet spread
Asian food buffet spread
Egg station in Waterfront
Egg station in Waterfront
View of the large Waterfront restaurant
View of the large Waterfront restaurant
Breakfast with sea view
Breakfast with sea view

Other facilities

Let’s explore more of this resort.

Beach bar
Beach bar
Weather forecast
Weather forecast
Ample beach chairs placed by the bar
Ample beach chairs placed by the bar

There is a back gate where you you will find annoying taxi touts and masseuses. Put on your ear plugs and a fake smile and continue walking a little to the right. You will find miles of clean, empty beach and sometimes, horses.

Back gate where you can leave the resort
Back gate where you can leave the resort
Long empty beach by the resort
Long empty beach by the resort
Majestic horses
Majestic horses
Aquamarine Pool Bar
Aquamarine Pool Bar
Kids Pool
Kids Pool
Connecting pool around the resort
Connecting pool around the resort
More connecting pool
More connecting pool

Besides the gym, you can stay active with complimentary activities or a game of tennis, squash or table-tennis.

The gym
The gym
List of daily activities
List of daily activities
Kids CLub
Kids Club
Business Center with multiple workstations
Business Center with multiple workstations
Boardroom
Boardroom
Late Check-out Lounge
Late Check-out Lounge
Clinic
Clinic
ATM machines
ATM machines
Shuttle bus timetable
Shuttle bus timetable

If you have to leave for the airport early in the morning, the hotel provides take-away breakfast boxes for you to bring along. Be sure to submit the take-away form beforehand.

Take-away breakfast boxes
Take-away breakfast boxes

Worth Noting

  • Breakfast hours: 0630 – 1100 hours
  • There is no Executive Lounge
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Conclusion

Hospitality was brilliant from the beginning. I really wished that there was an Executive Lounge but the amenities offered somehow made up for it. There are some restaurants located by the beach with a reasonably priced menu after you walk pass the taxi touts if you want cheaper dining options. If you can find a date that works for you at the cheapest rate of 3,150 THB/night, it is an outstanding value. The next time you decide to land in Phuket International Airport (HKT), considering going North instead.

Ratings

Breakfast: 10/10
Service: 10/10
Location: 9/10
Room: 10/10
Facilities: 10/10
Executive lounge: –
Elite member recognition: 10/10

6 thoughts on “Review: JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort & Spa (Duplex Suite)”

  1. Thank you for the great review. I’m going there in a week.
    Do you have any recommendations on going to the hotel from Phuket airport?
    Shuttle via Resort or just grab a taxi at the airport? Thank you!

    Reply
    • Hey, I’d rented a car on my previous visit. Not entirely sure if you can take a Grab car for the 1hr+ journey; prob a good idea to check on that before arrival. All the best and enjoy your stay!

      Reply
  2. I’m booked to go here in a few weeks and found your review very helpful Richard, particularly as I have Ambassador Elite status.

    Reply
  3. Hi Fais,

    Regarding "Platinum members are offered complimentary daily breakfast for two at Waterfront."

    From the T&C, platinum member can choose one welcome gift choice:
    "1,000 points per stay or amenity per stay or breakfast in restaurant per day"

    May I know what is the different from your stay?

    Reply
    • Hi Richard,

      Breakfast was automatic during my stay and I could choose to receive amenity or 1,000 points on top of that.

      Let me know if you are offered any different. 🙂

      Reply

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