Hotel Review: Amari Pattaya Offers Urban Sophistication in a Resort Setting

Amari Ocean Pattaya is a high-rise resort hotel located across the street from Pattaya Bay on Pattaya Beach Road.  The five-star property offers the facilities you would expect of a beach resort combined with the sophistication of an urban hotel.

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Entrance of the Amari Ocean Pattaya, an ocean-front resort hotel in Pattaya, Thailand. Photo Credit: Accidental Travel Writer.

The Amari Ocean Pattaya is one of the celebrated beach resort’s oldest hotels, occupying a prime location across the street from Pattaya Bay.

A five-star hotel, the resort has 297 rooms and suites with floor-to-ceiling picture windows and private balconies.

Facilities include a free-form swimming pool, a fitness room, and three food and beverage outlets, including one of Thailand’s most respected restaurants.

The Arrival …

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The Amari was the fourth and final hotel I stayed at on a seven-night visit to Pattaya, Thailand.

I had the bellman at my previous hotel, the Golden Sea Pattaya Hotel, flag down for me a taxi, which drove me to the Amari.

As is often the case in Thailand, the taxi driver didn’t have any idea where the Amari was located, even though it is perhaps the oldest and most established five-start hotel in the city.

He asked if I could tell him how to get there, which is always a bit scary, and I said, “No”.

“Am I going to get taken on a wild goose chase?” I wondered.

It was reassuring that the bellman had already negotiated the fare in advance. So even if the driver did get lost, it would be no skin off my back.

The Welcome …

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It was a pleasant surprise to attempt to check in in the lobby and be informed that I had been booked into a room on the executive floor and could, therefore, check in in the executive lounge.

I was escorted to the executive lounge, which is located on one of the five-star hotel’s highest floors, with picture windows affording sweeping views of the ocean.

I was served two very tasty welcoming drinks to sip while the formalities were taken care of. I assume they were expecting me to be traveling with a travel companion.

My Room …

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Measuring 49 square metres, my room was spacious and very tastefully furnished. It had sweeping views of the ocean through floor-to-ceiling windows.

There was also a small balcony, which was a convenient spot to hang clothes out to dry.

There was lots of closet space, a mini-bar, an iron – the usual things you would expect at a five-star hotel.

I particularly liked the spacious workstation and the complimentary wi-fi. The power outlets were also universal, which seems to be a growing trend at better hotels.

In the not-to-distant future, it might not be necessary to pack adaptors, but it would be a bit reckless to take this for granted for the time being, at least.

The Bathroom …

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My room had an open-plan bathroom with a large bathtub and a walk-in shower. There were two sinks. It was finished in pale beige marble. Italian, perhaps?

The Food and Beverage Outlets …

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One of Pattaya’s best restaurants – and,  if you believe TripAdvisor, one of Thailand’s best restaurants – is located on the hotel’s tropically landscaped grounds.

I had a sumptuous dinner there. My review of Mantra Restaurant and Bar is COMING.

The hotel has three food and beverage outlets, but I only ate at Mantra during my stay.

I preferred having breakfast in the executive lounge rather than in the hotel’s all-day dining restaurant, which I believe will be rebranded in the not-too-distant future.

Because of the eatery’s impending rebranding, I didn’t think it was necessary to review it at this time.

The hotel also has a swim-up bar in the swimming pool. Unlike the swim-up bars at many of the hotels I’ve stayed at, this one was staffed and fully functional.

The Executive Lounge …

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The hotel’s executive club is called the Horizon Club, and I can only assume that has something to do with the view, which stretched to the horizon.

The lounge is spacious, with comfortable seating and sweeping views of the ocean.

Non-alcoholic beverages and yummy snacks are available throughout the day.

Breakfast is served every morning from 6.00 am to 10.30 am. There is also a Happy Hour with hors-d’oeuvres and complimentary drinks, including alcoholic beverages, from 5.30 p to 7.30 pm.

The lounge is a child-free zone. Children below the age of 12 years of age are not allowed. Call me politically incorrect, but I think that’s a great policy.

I have nothing against kids, but I think they are (and I am) happier if they are left in the kids’ centre rather than being allowed to roam around the executive lounge.

The Dress Code …

The lounge also has a dress code. Guests wearing bathrobes, sleeveless shirts (singlets), athletic or training gear, or ripped clothing are asked to change into something more appropriate.

I do think it looks a bit tacky to show up in the executive lounge wearing a bathrobe.

When staying at posh resorts, it’s always a good idea to pack some attire in the “smart casual” category.

Other Executive Floor Privileges …

Guests staying on the executive floor are entitled to have a complimentary suit pressing on the day of their arrival. They will be charged if they wish to have their suit pressed on subsequent days during their stay.

I didn’t realize that an unpacking and packing service was available. If I had, I would have tried it.  I’ve only tried this service twice in my life, both times at hotels in Bali.

The first time I tried it, I was amazed at how much stuff the well-trained staff were able to stuff into my suitcase, and everything was truly very neat and orderly.

The second time I tried it (at another hotel), it was a disaster. Obviously, staff at the second hotel hadn’t received the same kind of training that staff at the first hotel had received.

They couldn’t fit everything into my suitcase and put the overflow into plastic bags. In the end, I removed everything and re-did it myself, managing to stuff everything into my suitcase.

Wake-up calls are followed by a complimentary morning drink which is delivered to your room a few minutes after your wake-up call. A shoe-shine service is also offered.

The Swimming Pool …

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The hotel has a lovely free-form swimming pool, and – unlike many of the hotels I’ve stayed at – the mid-pool bar is actually staffed and functional!

An Olympic size swimming and other facilities – such as a water park – are also under construction and should be operational by the end of 2018.

I am hoping to make a return trip to update this review after the new facilities open.

The Location …

The Amari Ocean Pattaya is located at the corner of the main road leading into town Pattaya Beach Road in North Pattaya.

The hotel is 1.9 kilometres from the Pattaya Bus Terminal, 4.5 kilometres from Bali Hai Pier, and 125 kilometres from Bangkok’s impossible to pronounce Suvarnabhumi International Airport.

Minimarts, day spas, a major shopping mall, food and beverage outlets, and numerous boutiques are all just a hop, skip, and a jump away.

How to Get There

Pattaya is roughly a two hours’ drive from downtown Bangkok. Unless you want to drive, you can travel to Pattaya by shuttle, bus, or taxi.

If two or more of you are traveling together, I would recommend going by taxi – providing you can get the fare negotiated in advance.

If you are going directly to Pattaya from overseas, the good news is that it’s relatively close to Thailand’s busiest airport. And another airport, which is even closer, is starting to attract international service, as well.

Pattaya is just 90 minutes from Suvarnabhumi International Airport and 45 to 50 minutes from U-Tapao / Rayon / Pattaya International Airport

A third option is Don Mueang International Airport, which is considerably more distant. The drive takes about 2 hours and 30 minutes.

Suvarnabhumi Airport is served mostly by international airlines as well as domestic airlines flying to foreign travel destinations.

U-Tapao was traditionally used for travel to domestic travel destinations, but it is starting to attract major airlines flying to international destinations.

Qatar Airways launched service to the airport in December 2017, and other airlines are sure to follow suit shortly. This will make Pattaya an even more attractive travel destination for overseas beachgoers.

Don Mueang is used mostly for domestic flights and by budget carriers.

Where

Amari Ocean Pattaya – 240 Pattaya Beach Road, Pattaya, Thailand. Tel: +66 0 3841 8413.

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