Economy hotel on the beach – great value at ibis Hua Hin

My second hotel for my Escape from Bangkok II – Hua Hin was the ibis hotel Hua Hin. It was in the same neighborhood as my previous, more upscale choices, the Amari Hua Hin, near the Cicada Market. Having stayed at a number of ibis hotels in Thailand, I had pretty clear expectations for my stay – and the ibis Hua Hin delivered the good economy rooms near the beach it promised!

Location: The ibis Hua Hin is located about 4km South of the Hua Hin city center off the main beach road and 200 meters from the beach. Public transport, courtesy of the local share taxi or songtaew, passes right in front of the hotel, making it easy and inexpensive (THB10 or $0.30) to go to town. The ibis also has its own shuttle to take you to the Hua Hin center a few times a day, making it easy enough to get around. Make sure to sign up for the shuttle – it has limited seating and even on a weekday during shoulder season was busy! The beach access road is next to the hotel, making for a short and easy 3 minute stroll to the beach.

HUA ibis - 5Service: Similar to other ibis hotels in Thailand, the service was friendly and quick – better than many mid- or upscale hotels in the US or Europe and I had my room key in no time. Despite Accor having a reputation for not delivering the promised elite membership benefits, the ibis Hua Hin offered a welcome soft drink at the bar and delivered a generous fruit plate to my room shortly after arrival, an unexpected treat at an economy hotel. Staff at the restaurant as well as the shuttle driver were friendly and courteous. Housekeeping was prompt and thorough throughout my stay. While the ibis of course doesn’t have the same number of staff as more upscale hotels, they get the job done well!

HUA ibis - 1Room: The size, layout and design of the ibis Hua Hin was very similar to other ibis hotels, with light-colored laminate wood floors, light colored furniture and a splash of dark red on the walls. A small TV, laptop size safe, fridge with two complimentary water and tea/coffee facilities are the provided amenities.
HUA ibis - 3The bathroom is very small, but functional and fully tiled, with soap and shampoo provided via eco-friendly dispensers. Compared to city ibis hotels, this beach hotel sacrificed the standard desk at the window for a small balcony. It’s handy to try your towels, but really too small to sit there. I’d prefer a desk to work, but can appreciate that many visitors rather have a small balcony. My room was on the top floor, overlooking the pool area. Despite facing the street side, it was quiet and I didn’t have any noise issues. The room has free wifi internet and to my surprise, it was reliable and fast throughout, with an average speed of 5.5Mbps and a range from 2.5-13Mbps.

HUA ibis - 4Amenities/Restaurant: The ibis has a small pool area with a good number of loungers and some bistro style tables and chairs to eat. It wasn’t very busy during my visit and I was able to get a lounger whenever I wanted. The pool is facing the parking lot and street, separated by a hedge. You have two towels in the room, so remember to bring them.
I visited the restaurant every morning for breakfast and it offered a standard buffet breakfast with a selection of fruit, yogurt, pastries and bread, as well as some hot Western and local dishes. The quality and selection is better than the free breakfast most mid-scale, limited service hotels (ie Hampton Inn) provide and enough to get your day started. You can have lunch and dinner at the restaurant as well, but I didn’t try.There is also a small lobby bar that serves drinks and snacks throughout the day.

Conclusion: It was another satisfactory stay at an ibis hotel in Thailand. You get a clean, modern room a good breakfast, friendly service and basic amenities a short stroll from the beach. If that’s all you need, at only $40/night (or half the Amari Hua Hin), it’s great value and can make for a cheap beach vacation. I’d recommend it and will certainly stay at this or other ibis hotels in the region, especially when traveling solo!

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