Kenting Villa in Manzhou Mountain Wilderness: Star Villa Deep Dive Review

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Kenting Villa in Manzhou Mountain Wilderness: Star Villa Deep Dive Review

The Star Villa (星苑民宿) in the Kenting Manzhou area is located deep into Kenting National Park’s eastern mountain wilderness, in secluded Lide Village, offering a secluded retreat from the usual city, and even the beach rush, that typical Kenting resorts or homestays offer.

Is it worth staying one more night in this not-easy-to-find villa, which stands almost inside wild areas of Manzhou part of Kenting National Park?

Definitely yes, and let us delve really deep into the details of what it is like and what you can expect from staying in this Kenting villa

Main Reasons to Choose the Star Villa (星苑Villa) in Kenting

  • Located almost inside “Kenting wild side” – on the small roads through Kenting National Park to the east coast Jialeshui Falls
  • Presidential Suite offers stunning mountain views and boasts a private pool
  • Only 3 rooms on the property, which offers a chance for a quiet, secluded, and romantic stay
  • Located on the mountain, but still in a 10 min drive from Manzhou township with a convenience store, and a famous local restaurantXue’s Tofu Restaurant.
  • 25 min drive from Jialeshui beach, where all the surfing activities take place.
Public Pool in Kenting Villa in Manzhou

Even on rainy days view from the public pool in Star Villa is impressive

Where is Star Villa located exactly?

It is not easy to find it actually, and the best is to enter its chinese name: 星苑民宿 into google maps, and you will see the location exactly.

Or, head over to our interactive kenting tourist guide map, and see it there.

Just check this location out!

Just WOW, right? This is a real Manzhou mountain sanctuary, and this really feels so when you stay there.

What’s most interesting here, is that when I first booked this villa, I first planned an early morning walk on these small trails that I marked with arrows down to Jialeshui to make 360° videos and photos of the area and catch morning surfers in my 360° footage.

However, the host were quick to tell that you can’t walk there (not talking about driving a motorbike), that you can’t do that, and you need to apply a permission. 

So, actually google maps also suggest driving around the area, so it will take around 25 minutes by car from Kenting Star Villa to Jialeshui, if you decide to catch the sunrise as I did.
This is how deep and close to protected areas of Kenting National Park you are staying in this villa. 

What type of rooms can be booked at Kenting Star Villa?

There are 3 rooms available in the property, and all serves different kind of groups or visitors, so be careful when you reserve them, there are some caveats that come to each of them.

Double Room with Garden View with 1 full bed

Deluxe Quadruple Room with 2 queen beds

Presidential Suite, which at least in booking.com is advertised like this:

presidential villa advert from booking

First room is located in the separate building near the entrance of the property, and looks like this from outside:

Double Room with Garden View with 1 full bed

Double Room with Garden View building.

Since we stayed in Presidential Suite (more on this later), we can’t really tell much about this room, the only thing is – you still can use the swimming pool that is located just in front of Deluxe Quadruple Room.

How close is the public pool to Deluxe Quadruple Room? Check this out:

deluxe quadraple room in kenting villa public pool

The door on the left is the entrance to Deluxe Quadruple Room.

Which then causes the reason, which in my opinion is why this place on google maps have only 2.7* star rating, while in fact beeing quite a good place after all.
And the reason is – Deluxe Quadraple Room in all photos are advertised and sold in a way, that gives you a false impression, that the big pool on first floor is a private pool belonging to this room only. 

Take a look yourself, and walk around it, in our full 360° tour around the first floor of this building and the public (as it turns out) pool:

So, here is a caveat – you can see that this room, like other too rooms on the property having whole glass walls, covered by curtains, offers a good feel if you are in the private area, however, if the pool is available to play for everyone, and then you know typical kids, and how they “play” – you might now have a romantic secluded stay you hoped for.

This is why your choice can be a more expensive one, but – presidential suite, which we booked for our trip.

deluxe quadruple room wall

Even though there is a curtain, in case of guests from other rooms come to play in the public pool, you will have no privacy feel in Deluxe Quadruple Room.

Presidential Suite Living Room Tour

The whole purpose of me making these 360° videos and tours is that “seeing is believing”, so again, have a full walk yourself in the Presidential Suite, and then continue reading the comments.

Presidential Suite is located on the second floor or the building and it occupies all the second floor.

location of presidential suite

Presidential Suite in Kenting Star Villa occupies all of the second floor. 

Unlike the deluxe quadruple room, there is a separate entrance with walkway to the main door of the room, which can be locked at the night, which offers additional feel of privacy, which seems are not so in deluxe quadruple room. 

separate entrance and walkway to presidential suite

Separate (and lockable) walkway to Presidential Villa (screenshot from our full Virtual Tour, above)

360° video near the entrance to Presidential Suite [if you are on mobile, be sure to open the video in the youtube app to have 360° effects working ] 

Entrance to the room starts with a small entry chamber, where key is hanged upon a dry tree branch. 

a place to hang up the key with a spotlight

Kudos for attaching a spotlight to the key, but “Nah” for not changing the battery. 

After the entrance chamber you find yourself in a big living room, where you can see 2 sofas, mentioned in booking.com, door to outside to the private pool, door to the spa room, and area where toilet and sink is located.

living room in presidential suite

Spacious and well designed living room in presidential suite

Everything is really very big and spacious, just as you would expect in the Presidential Suite.
Living room is the first “surprise” – these 2 sofas actually are not supposed for sleep, the shape is round, and if the person (usually your teenage kids) you want to sleep on these, are pretty tall, they will not sleep comfortably there, even if you get a blanket and pillow from a host. Smaller kids will probably sleep OK for a night. Otherwise, this huge suite can be booked only by a couple sleeping in the same bed in the bedroom.

round shaped sofas in living room

Round-shaped sofas maybe look good from a design perspective, but will not be comfy for sleep. 

Living room shows several things that we love to see in such homestays and villas, and here on our blog, we call “attention to details” – because as we saw numerous times, for example in Nandian Homestay in Eluanbi, the more these personalized details – the better are whole experience in total, and the less of these details – the more bad experience as a whole like it was with a Black & White Inn on Kenting Main Street.

The spot near TV, and sofas have real authentic (as host says) spears from local Manzhou aborigenes, nice, and you can touch them!

[if you are on mobile, be sure to open the video in the youtube app to have 360° effects working ] 

mushrooms

These mushrooms near the fireplace, are nice to see and they freshen up the look.

Towels near spa room, are hanged on this wood thing, which probably resembles a horse.

Towels near spa room, are hanged on this wood thing, which probably resembles a horse.

old school sampo refrigerator in presidential suite

Refrigerator is not the white-boring-one-you-are-tired-to-see-again, but this nice classic look Sampo.

drinks inside the refrigerator

Drinks inside are also all yours.

snacks chest

Snacks are placed into s stylized treasure chest like this. 

balloon cubes in presidential suite

Another element which is there just for a personal touch is these balloon cubes.

Another element which is there just for a personal touch is these balloon cubes.

Coffee cup & wine glass table is also far from beeing “regular”. 

hairdryer table

There is a whole table just for a hairdryer, impressive right? 

Another place which is really nicely decorated to offer a seaside mood, and Kenting resort feel is the sink, which is actually covered with a real sand, rocks and shell from the sea, this really sets your Kenting mood right, which is important in any Kenting holiday.

The toilet sliding door can be closed to offer privacy, notice the black rock wall inside the toilet, which resembles in my opinion volcanic rocks that can be found on the eastern coast of the Kenting beaches, or near the Frog Rock Trails

The same black stone wall is near the public pool down on the first floor. 

toilet in presidential suite in kenting villa

Presidential Suite Bathroom, SPA room & Bathroom amenities

In presidential suite of Star Villa, you basically have 2 bathroom areas – one is the sink mentioned above, that is near the toilet, and then the whole mountain view spa bathroom behind the door you saw in the living room.

Again, if you already had a walk in our 360° virtual tour, then you already walked in the spa bathroom as well, now lets describe it in more details.

360° video in the presidential suite in Star Villa in Kenting

mountain view bathroom in presidential suite in kenting villa

Mountain view bathroom with a spa tub. 

Once you go in, the first wow effect probably is the view, and the unusual design of the bath tub – it resembles a rock, and then the whole idea is to have this full wild mountain immersion while looking the glass windows, which are almost panoramic and offers an impressive Manzhou mountain panorama view.

Towels are having The Star logo, have a soft, nice touch, are clean and smell good. (I just can’t forget terrible “something” that was ordered instead of towels in Black & White Inn). 

The glass ceiling could be cleaner, but that’s acceptable considering the area where the property is located. 

Bathroom Amenities provided in presidential suite in Star Villa Kenting

bathroom amenities in presidential suite

Room Facilities

Closest Beaches Nearby

  • Jialeshui Beach – 11.0 km
  • Gangkou Beach – 10.3 km
  • Xinghai Beach – 11.3 km

Attractions and things to do nearby

  • Chufengbi – 4.6 km
  • Jialeshui Falls – 14.1 km
  • Jialeshui Scenic Garden & Area – 12.1 km
  • Eagle Watching Platform – 1.6 km
  •  Old Sisal Factory Ruins – 7.4 km
  • Yucun Park – 10.3 km
  • Diaoqiao Wetland Park – 10 km
  • Gangkou Suspension Bridge – 9.9 km

Presidential Suite Bedroom

Bedroom is rather simple, and resembles something of Japanese minimalist touch, with 2 chairs and the tea pot on the ground (which most likely you are not going to use anyway, just my wild guess).

presidential suite bathroom

the tea pot on the ground

However, what is the joker card here – it is the view. View, view, view! This is a view you will wake up in the morning, and then there are chances that you can see even some wild monkeys nearby (according to the host). 

kenting villa

Postcard view from the bedroom in Presidential Suite in this Kenting Villa

horse chair

Speaking of attention to detail, this “horse” shaped chair looks good.

Power plugs in the suite 

Power plugs are also located near the bed, so at least this looks like designed by someone who at least once in a lifetime has been sleeping at hotel after year 2000. 

Again, walk in the bedroom in the 360° tour we posted above and on the kenting interactive map, and look around in all directions, to have a real feel what it is about to be in this bedroom.

Private Pool at presidential suite

Unlike another room on the first floor, which has a direct access to a pool, but it is a public pool, this room has a pool on the second floor which is all yours. 

inside the private pool of presidential suite

View from inside of private pool at presidential suite

breakfast served at private pool side

And this is where you will want to have your breakfast served!

western style breakfast in presidential suite in star villa kenting

Speaking on breakfast, this is basically what you, get, and you have a choice to choose either a coffee or milk. 
Tell to the host at what time you want breakfast to be served next morning when you are checking in. 

Pool is not big, you won’t be able to train seriously for your next olympic games in swimming, but is big enough for an adult to swim.

And sure big enough to make a sunset photos with a glass of wine, with a mountains on the backdrop.

nterestingly enough, that if you swim seriously in your presidential suite pool, water starts to splash all over the edges, and down to the first floor, I would say – not a best experience for those, who sit for example on these chairs on the first floor.
One more argument against the room on the first floor.

deluxe quadruple room in star villa

Wet area in lower right corner is a result “president” on the second floor swimming in the private pool

Territory around the Villa

Again, for your convenience, we will post the full virtual tour around the public pool and the territory around the villa, so you can see and feel it yourself. 

If you go left from the title view in this tour and then walk few steps at the other side of the villa, you will see this… well, abandoned room. 

abandoned room in kenting villa

I am not sure why they did not develop it, but considering that there is only 3 rooms in the property, strange, why not? I suspect, it has to do be something technical they cloud not solve, since second floor over it, is a bathroom of presidential villa, but who knows?

Walk more and you will find yourself in this small meadow, and there is a small trail up, which ends just there.

If you take the main driveway down (the one in the picture below), you will end up in a place, which can be used as spare parking (if you do not want to park near the entrance), and then from there, you can see a “from-the-below-view” on the villa again. 

kenting star villa

Conclusion

Is it worth paying a hefty price for a presidential villa? Yes, the room offered, views, and privacy are worth paying more, other 2 rooms, while cheaper will not offer the same immersion and feel like a presidential suite in Star Villa in Kenting, Manzhou

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