When we arrived in Hat Yai it was raining, so we tried to find somewhere to stay as quickly as possible and soon came across the Cathay Guesthouse, upon the recommendation of both Lonely Planet and a nearby tour company. We walked in and it seemed nice enough and had a large communal lobby area with tables, chairs, computers and a tv. What sold it was the price though…just 250 baht for a triple room for the night (about £5). When we got to our room we soon understood why…instead of a proper lock on the door, the key in my hand was to a padlock. That was the first surprise.
Upon walking into the room, it was ok…three single beds, with towels and linen provided…and fine, it was a bit run-down, with peeling paint and damp spots on the walls, but it was perfectly acceptable for our one night there. However, our second surprise came when we looked into the bathroom. There, sitting proudly on a sort of stage, was a (not very clean) squat toilet. Excellent. I feel like this should have been one of the major points in the Lonely Planet review…I’m perfectly happy to use a squat loo in a random cafe by the side of the road, but in the room I’m staying in…no thanks! Oh and there was no hot water…I found this out when I jumped in the shower and got a freezing cold shock!
However, there are a few redeeming qualities to this place…the staff are lovely and the (cheap) breakfast is pretty delicious. So if you’re just passing through Hat Yai, it’s a fine place to stay, but for more than a night…I think I’ll find somewhere else.
Dates stayed: 16 Dec 2011
Value for Money: 80%