Jamie's Phuket Blog

Jamie's Phuket Blog - Discover The Real Phuket

Our House For Sale (or Rent) in Phuket

If you follow me on social media (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook) you may have seen that, after 19 years in Phuket, I have headed back to the UK. Reasons? School/education for my kids, a new challenge, a new life, being close to family in the UK ... it's not planned to be permanent, and we are keeping our house in Chumphon (my wife's hometown), but in order to fund this big move we are selling our house in Phuket. Or we'd be happy to rent it long term (at least 6 months). Anyone interested, please contact me by email (jjjjmonk@yahoo.co.uk) or if you are in Phuket and want to see the house please call 089 2929104 to arrange a viewing (as we are currently in the UK this number is for a neighbour of ours who can help you).

Location, Location Location

Sure everyone has an idea of their preferred location. If you want a seaview, sorry we can't help, but .. we are in the Kathu area. The center of the universe! Within 5 - 10 minutes we can drive to all major malls and supermarkets, cinema, international hospitals, many of the best schools, local markets, golf courses, lots of restaurants .. Patong is a 10-15 minute drive in one direction and Phuket Town is 10 - 15 minutes in the other direction. Nearest minimart to our house is a 2 minute drive or 10 minute walk, and there's a gasoline station in the same location. We are on a quiet side road, but close to everything. There's a clubhouse with a pool right over the street from our house. There's no through traffic passing our house, it's very peaceful.

Our house sits of 140 Wah of land, which is 560 square meters. This is divided into 2x70 Wah plots with separate land titles. The house is on 70 Wah and we bought the extra land later so we have a big garden area and space for parking multiple vehicles and lots of space to expand the house or build your own pool or even build a second house.

The house is one floor (unless you count a climb of 2 steps to the bedrooms. There's a large living room/dining area, a not-so-huge kitchen that we often thought to enlarge, 3 bedrooms, one main bathroom, plus 1 bedroom has en-suite shower/toilet and another bedroom has en-suite shower. Main bathroom was recently redecorated. All bedrooms and living room have aircon. Behind the kitchen is a covered utility area where we have washing machines/dryer/storage. At the front of the house there's also a decent size shed.

Water supply to our street is very good, and we also have a water tank with pump. Electric supply in Kathu is very reliable, I can recall maybe 3 times in 15 years when we had any power outages. We have 3bb internet / wifi in the house which a new owner can take over if they want. There are multiple wall mounted fans around the house which will stay there. All windows have mosquito screens and bars. Security in the street has never been a problem. It's a very safe area.

If you need more information - please contact me by email (jjjjmonk@yahoo.co.uk) or to see the house please call 089 2929104 to arrange a viewing.

We have lived there 15 years and we were the first occupants of the house, so it has had 1 careful owner! Perfect for a family, lots of space, quiet area but close to everything.

Selling price : 9,500,000 Baht or near enough offer. For a house in this location with a big land area, it's a good price.

Rental : 20,000 Baht per month - discount possible if paying long term in advance.

House Photos





























As you can see - lots of space and different areas around the house. We have enjoyed living here, adding extras to the house, redecorating, repainting, growing the garden - lots of big mature plants which we planted many years ago. I am biased, but it's a very nice place to live.

Anyone interested, please contact me by email (jjjjmonk@yahoo.co.uk) or if you are in Phuket and want to see the house please call 089 2929104 to arrange a viewing. Cheers!






Snakes in Phuket

I've not had too many run-ins with snakes in the many years I've been living in Phuket. Never seen a really huge one except at Phuket Zoo.. oh and I have seen banded sea snakes many times while diving in the Similan Islands - they are really poisonous but totally ignore divers. Snakes are a fact of life here. Our house is close to a big tree-covered hill, not in the middle of town, so we do expect a snake now and then. A couple of years ago, we'd get one every week, but normally just small things. A couple of baby cobras... which makes you think "where's mama cobra?". We have had hardly any in the last few years - we have always had cats and recently had a couple of stray dogs who liked to hang around our house to get food ... which I think is enough to deter snakes.

My wife called me at work one time saying she'd seen a big one in the garden but it had slithered away, then she saw it hanging on a tree next to our house. We do worry about snakes since we have 2 kids. She was worried this one would come back - and it did! I saw it hanging on the gate a couple of days later - about 3 feet long, green colour, and aggressive. It really did not like being hit with a spade. Liked it even less on the second hit. Well, I'm not a killer, but I'm not a vegetarian either and don't want a poisonous snake near my kids!

If we do see snakes around the house there's not always time for a photo. Here's a few pictures from over the years ...

Oriental Whip Snake

(above) Oriental Whip Snake

Golden Tree Snake in our garden

Golden Tree Snake on our car

(above) Golden Tree Snake in our garden and another photo of me gently removing one from our truck! These tree snakes/whipsnakes are not really dangerous. They do have venom and I guess you don't want to be bitten, but they're not going to cause an adult human any problems. The tree snakes can move really fast - blink and they can vanish into trees or bushes. I was once doing some gardening and a tree snake "flew" out of a tree right onto me! Momentary panic until I saw what it was.

Monocled Cobra (dead)

(above) a no-longer-alive Monocled Cobra. We have had a few of these in our garden. The biggest over a meter long. Any bigger and I'd be calling the snake catchers for sure. Nasty snake. Very venomous. I make no apology for killing this one.

Dogs fighting a cobra

(above) On our street .. 2 dogs fighting a monocled cobra!

And sometimes (as photo below) it's better to call the snake catchers! This one was about 3 meters long, my wife was home and thought it was a cobra. Turned out to be a really big rat snake (non venomous but can still give a nasty bite). If I saw a snake this big I'd do the same as my wife - not trying to tackle that on my own!

Big Rat Snake Being Caught in our Garden

I found a great website several years ago about snakes in Thailand - www.thailandsnakes.com - anything you want to know about snakes in Thailand is here - lots of pictures, some videos, explanations of which snakes are venomous / dangerous. Here in Phuket if you did see a really big one, call the police and they call the local snake catcher. Normally big ones are released back into the wild. I admit that I prefer to whack with a spade first, ask questions later. I have been reading the snakes in Thailand website quite a lot in order to recognise some of the real nasty ones like the Malayan Pit Viper. Never seen one, don't want to!

Snake information about the snakes pictured above :

Oriental Whip Snake
Monocled Cobra
Golden Tree Snake




Top 10 Phuket Hotels 2019

Here's the 2019 Top 10 Phuket Hotels list. There are 3 new entries compared to 2018 and a new number 1. For each hotel there are links for checking online rates and availability with Agoda.com. As for all previous year's top 10 hotel lists, I based this on Tripadvisor rankings which may be imperfect and change all the time. You'll find links to reviews for each hotel. Hotels get scores out of 10 on Agoda so you can compare reviews, and importantly reviews can only be made by guests who have actually booked the hotel, so you can see if real hotel guests agree with TA ratings!

1. Ayara Kamala Resort

Ayara Kamala Resort

Ayara Kamala Resort was new in the top 10 last year and now jumps right to the top! Despite the name, the resort is not right on Kamala beach - you'll find it on the headland south of Kamala along with several other very nice resorts and private villas. This stretch of coast has great views and the resort is quite exclusive, with just a dozen or so villas. The area is called Millionaire's Mile. From the resort to Kamala beach is about 2km, so hopefully they have a free shuttle!

Ayara Kamala - Information & Booking
Ayara Kamala - Reviews

2. The Chava Resort (Surin Beach)

Chava Resort

The Chava hit the top 10 in 2015, hit number 1 in 2016 and was number 2 last year too. Surin Beach always has something in the top 10! The Chava Resort features a collection of 2 - 5 room apartments (this seems to be called an "apartment resort"), some are run directly by the hotel, while some on the same property are privately owned and privately rented. Rooms are really enormous, not normal hotel size, great for families and groups. Like Ayara, it's a place with sea views, slightly up in the hills, not right on the beach but just few minutes walk from Surin beach.

Chava Resort - Information & Booking
Chava Resort - Reviews

3. BYD Lofts (Patong Beach)

BYD Lofts

BYD Lofts remains very popular - it's been in the top 5 for the last 5 years. Unlike the top 3 on this list - if you want a room near the heart of Patong Beach, close to the action and in the middle of the busiest beach area in Thailand, BYD Lofts offers serviced apartments with the hotel featuring a rooftop pool (and a view over the beautiful concrete jungle of Patong). There are 1 or 2 bedroom apartments of various sizes. I rarely venture into Patong myself - not my style, but Patong beach is very convenient for visitors, with huge numbers of restaurants plus shops/the big Jungceylon Mall and tour agents near you. And bars and nightlife too.

BYD Lofts - Information & Booking
BYD Lofts - Reviews

4. Trisara Phuket Villas & Residences

Trisara

Trisara has been either 1 or 2 on this list for about 5 years, so a surprise to find it ranked 4th! I would really really love to stay here a few days and do nothing at all! Are you listening Trisara manager?! Trisara offers private pool villas by a private beach to the north of Bang Tao beach in the north of Phuket island. Trisara is what I'd call a "private, luxury, superb view view, relax and unwind" style hotel. Only 48 villas, acres of space, no crowds. There are also "private residences" (houses) with 2 - 6 bedrooms, ideal for families, big groups, or even wedding parties. Or just for a relaxing getaway for a romantic couple. The location - miles from any busy areas, so youll need your own transport or have to get taxis everywhere.

Trisara - Information & Booking
Trisara - Reviews

5. Navatara (Rawai Beach)

Navatara

Navatara first appeared on the list at number 7 in 2016, and has been at number 5 for 2 years. Navatara opened in 2013, but with hotels opening all the time I'd not even heard of it until doing the top 10 list in 2016! Navatara has 37 rooms, built with some "Thai style". Some rooms have pool access, and all rooms look pretty big! This is a smaller, Thai style resort away from the main beaches, but not too far - many people ask me to recommend a hotel like this! Like many of the very best hotels, it's not on the beach. Navatara is about 500m from Rawai beach and a few minutes drive from Nai Harn beach and Phromthep Cape. One of my favourite corners of Phuket.

Navatara - Information & Booking
Navatara - Reviews

6. Avista Grande (Karon Beach)

Avista Grande

The top 10 in the last couple of years has almost entirely been missing hotels at the main beaches, but the Avista Grande at Karon Beach leaps into the top 10. The full name is Avista Grande Phuket Karon MGallery by Sofitel .. bit of a mouthful. Sofitel is a chain, part of the Accor group, with MGallery being a more boutique luxury style of hotel. I worked at Karon beach at the Sunrise Divers shop and we had a fair number of customers staying at this hotel.

Avista Grande - Information & Booking
Avista Grande - Reviews

7. Chanalai Flora Resort (Kata Beach)

Chanalai Flora Resort

And another on a main beach! There are several Chanalai resorts in Phuket (Garden, Hillside, Romantica, Flora) and all are in Kata or Karon. Note - if you stay at one of these, be sure if you book tours that you know which Chanalai you are at! And note that this is not the same place as La Flora, which is in Patong. Chanalai Flora is in a great location just a few minutes walk to Kata beach, and there are plenty of shops and all kind of restaurants nearby. And the price is quite a bit lower than most of these top 10 resorts!

Chanalai Flora Resort - Information & Booking
Chanalai Flora Resort - Reviews

8. The Surin (Pansea Beach)

The Surin

The Surin (formerly called The Chedi) reopened with the new name about 8 years ago, but The Chedi had already been in Phuket for many many years, with it's uniquely excellent location on a "private" beach between Surin and Bang Tao beaches in the north of Phuket. I'd stay here! Another resort that is a little remote but you can get to Surin or Bang Tao for restaurant options. I'd rent a car if I stayed here. And The Surin is not ridiculously expensive compared to the neighbour - the beach is shared with the very very fancy Amanpuri.

The Surin - Information & Booking
The Surin - Reviews

9. Renaissance Phuket Resort (Mai Khao Beach)

Renaissance

Renaissance is one of the various Marriott owned resorts north of Phuket Airport at Mai Khao Beach. Renaissance has been on this blog before as part of the Best Luxury Phuket Resorts list and was also in the Top 10 Hotels for 2018 and 2017. Mai Khao beach is still really quiet and unless you stick to only the various Marriott hotel restaurants you'll need transport or taxis to get to other places. Rent a car, explore, drive just a few minutes from here and you're over the bridge into Phang Nga province. Ideal for a few days of relaxation and a quiet base for exploring the Phuket area!

Renaissance - Information & Booking
Renaissance - Reviews

10. Pacific Club Resort (Karon Beach)

Pacific Club Resort

Pacific Club has been lurking around the top 10 for years, sometimes in and sometimes just out. Located on the hillside above Karon beach near the also-popular Mandarava resort, Pacific Club is a bit off the main strip, quiet at night, great views, has a popular restaurant and various room types including suites and small apartments with kitchens. It's about 10 minutes walk down to the beach.

Pacific Club Resort - Information & Booking
Pacific Club Resort - Reviews


And that's the Top 10 hotels in Phuket as of early 2019. Have you stayed at a hotel that's not listed, but you think it should be? Go and give it a big review and get it's TA ranking up! Phuket has been on the mainstream tourism route for nearly 30 years now, and there is a great mix of old and new resorts (hard to keep up with openings and re-brandings!), big hotels, guesthouses, villas, apartments, hillside, beachfront, busy areas, quiet areas. There is something here in Phuket for everyone. Any budget.

For anyone thinking of coming to Phuket - doing your research is very important especially regarding the hotel location. Look at a map, please! I read too many reviews complaining about location. Check the map! In recent years, as this list shows, many top class resorts have opened in more secluded areas and the trend is for sea view hillside (not on the beach) hotels and villas. Land prices (buying or renting) are so incredibly high that beachfront would be a mega-investment. Although Phuket does get many package tourists these days there is also a big luxury market, and most of this top 10 could be called luxury (by my standards), but at the same time small hotels, guesthouses and "backpacker price" places are also plentiful.

For hotel booking, reviews, information ... check agoda.com or booking.com! See you in Phuket!