My first visit to Phuket was in September 2015. I had decided to stay in Patong and was looking for a budget accommodation. During September, being low season, even the high end hotels there should be going cheap. I could have stayed in a good hotel at a budget price if I had gone to Patong without an advance hotel booking. But my first port of landing in Thailand was Phuket and I would need a hotel booking voucher for my visa on arrival. Advance bookings do give comfort but not without a price. The guest house I booked was rated OK by their previous guests and it was cheap too, like 550 THB a day. 500 THB is the basic pricing for any good budget hotel or guest house in Thailand. Anything less than 500 THB makes it a dicey proposition. But that does not apply in September which is the month of the year that sees the lowest number of tourist arrivals in Thailand. Considering that logic I was paying too much but somehow my imagination did not work beyond Casa Jip. Going to a place for the first time does create some anxiety and from reading many online reviews of many hotels, Casa Jip seemed better than others. Its location was one obvious advantage. Keep reading...
|Casa Jip Guest House Patong Phuket|
|Lobby of Casa Jip Guest House Patong Phuket|
Casa Jip is located at 207/10, Ratuthit Songroipi Road (Ratuthit 200 Pee Road), (Phone: 076343019), inside a lane opposite the more well known 'Christin Massage'. Patong's Bangla Road is at a 5-10 minutes' walk from Casa Jip. To make the location of Casa Jip clear, let's use the example of Bangla Road. One end of Bangla Road meets the Patong Beach Road and the other end meets Ratuthit 200 Pee Road. If you cross the Ratuthit 200 Pee Road after coming out of Bangla Road, you will almost be at the doorstep of Jungcylon Shopping Mall. And if you turn right after exiting Bangla Road, you will be walking towards Christin Massage or Casa Jip Guest House. There is a location map of the guest house later in this page.
Rooms and Pricing
My booking was for a "Budget Double Room" and I paid 63.20 USD for four nights, approximately 550 THB per day. That was also the rack rate being offered to walk in guests. And since not many people were staying at the guest house, I think they would have rented that room to a walk-in guest at 400 THB also. No breakfast was covered in the tariff and was not even available. They told me that the breakfast service would start after October. Apart from Budget, the guest house has some 'Standard' and 'Deluxe' rooms too. A private bathroom, a locker, an electric kettle, and a mini fridge are available in all the rooms. Budget rooms are on the ground floor with a window but no view, Standard rooms are on the upper floor facing the street, and Deluxe rooms have some additional amenities like dvd player, WiFi internet, a balcony, and shower caps. Shower caps are important here. All the bathrooms in this guest house have what are called as 'tropical rain showers', fitted in the bathroom ceiling. Now with this type of shower head, if you do not want to get your hair wet, you are going to need a shower cap. But that is provided only in Deluxe rooms, not even in a Standard rooms. I discussed this with the owner. Why provide overhead showers when there are no shower caps, and why not have wall mounted showers in the budget and Standard rooms. I only got some illogical response. Perhaps budget tourists are not supposed to talk logic.
My Budget Double Room
|Budget Room In Casa Jip Guest House Patong Phuket|
|Casa Jip Guest House Patong Budget Room|
|Casa Jip Guest House Budget Room Bath|
True to the online reviews I had read, the room was clean. The high window sans a view was covered with a curtain. The room was not too small and the lack of any view did not make it depressing or something. I was comfortable there, though for 550 THB in low season, I would have liked to have some more value. There was a double bed, an old & slightly leaky split A.C. on a wall, an LCD TV showing very few channels, a locker in the cupboard and a small fridge in a corner which was empty. Two glasses, two mugs, and an electric kettle completed the furnishing of the room. There was no free water, and no tea/coffee supplies. Only one electric point was working in the room where I could charge my phone. The A.C. barely succeeded in cooling the room. The bathroom was OK apart from the shower issue I mentioned. All in all I was somehow able to sleep in this budget place for three out of the four nights. On one of the nights there was a sudden power cut. The lights went out and the A.C. stopped working. The power cut lasted a few hours and during those hours in the middle of the night, I was in the lobby chatting with their night receptionist. So, there is no generator backup and that is a big negative.
Other Unique Features Of Casa Jip
Casa Jip's policies towards the guests seemed a little strict. Consider these rules:
(i) Stained or soiled bed linen will attract the following penalties:
- 200 THB for a pillow case
- 300 THB for a bath mat
- 400 THB for a towel
- 500 THB for a bed sheet
- 800 THB for a bed cover
(ii) A.C. power-on penalty:
If a guest leaves the room while the air-conditioner is still on, there would be a penalty of 500 THB per such occasion.
(iii) If the booking is for a single room, 500 THB would be charged for a joiner. For a double room booking and only one person staying, there was no joiner fee.
(iv) Check-out time was 11.00am and any late check-out (max 4 hours) was chargeable at 50% of the room rent.
Laundry service was offered at 50 THB per kilogram which is the standard rate anywhere in Phuket. But the guest house would not take any responsibility for any damage to the garments or for any missing items. I wonder why any guest will will such a laundry facility from the guest house. A beach towel could be rented at 50 THB per day and a taxi service to or from would be charged at 800 THB. A little too steep considering the availability of a 180 THB mini van service between the airport and Patong.
|Casa Jip Guest House Patong Phuket Location Map|
Where Was The Value?
I was paying 550 THB a day to sleep in a room without a usable window, without any power backup, and saying a prayer to my lord every day that even accidentally I should not soil the bed sheet because that would cost me another 500 THB. The only plus of this property is its location and in that regard, it is not even unique. There are hundreds of hotels and guest houses in this area and at least I could not understand what was the selling point of Casa Jip. But then some people do like it. Casa Jip Guest House Booking Site
|Posted by Narinder Singh|