Sunday, March 29, 2015

Passing Through

Back in the Mango for the night and then off to the Resort tomorrow morning.  Had a very nice weekend in ChaAm with Marina and B.  We visited the kite festival and then spent some time at the hotel.  We also visited our favorite beach spot in Hua Hin for some lunch before taking a stroll and swim at one of the hotel's swimming pools.

One of three swimming pools

I will do something usual for this blog in that I will recommend a hotel for those that are going to visit Cha Am or the Hua Hin area - but only if you have a car or other personal transportation.  We stayed at the Grand Pacific Sovereign  Resort and Spa.  The hotel is an excellent value if you get their promotional bookings via the internet.  Since it was for only one night, we didn't mind paying 2700 baht  ($85 USD)  for their promotional room (mountain view).  Breakfast is extra but I recommend booking it with the room rate as the walk-in rate is 500 baht per person.  So what do you get?  Lavish grounds, 3 swimming pools, beach access and large comfortable rooms.  The breakfast was very good.  Here is their website:  http://www.sovereignresortandspa.com/.  The best test of a good rating is the answer to this question:  Would you go there again?...my answer is an unqualified "yes" but I would book a couple of days just to hang out at the pools.  I recommend this hotel to those with private transport because its on the far north end of the beach, away from the main part of town.  Its very quiet and peaceful, but you need a car to get there easily.

Our room with B lounging by the bay windows
Each time I go to Hua Hin/Cha Am, I am surprised by the amount of development underway.  There are both small and mega projects that have transformed the cozy little beach town to a major tourist destination for those visiting the Bangkok Area, looking for a close by beach resort.  With Pattaya having a seedy reputation, the more upscale and family oriented tourists have flocked to the other side of the gulf.  The road from Bangkok has been greatly improved and vans, buses, and trains provide a convenient way of getting there.

Because of the crowds and development, I will not be buying anything there.  Hotels are both reasonable and offer a variety of accommodations.  For a quick getaway, its great...long term residency...no thanks.

Giant kites adorn the beach over ChaAm
Lastly, the kite festival seemed to be going quite well.  However, when we left this afternoon, the wind had not come up and all the kites were sitting on the beach.  Met up with some friends from different parts of the world that come to these festivals and who I only see once a year or so.  Took a few photos and then went on with our own agenda....no politics and thus a very enjoyable weekend.

This kite team from Malaysia is totally immersed in their routine

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