The guys who own Angus O'Toole's, the Irish pub in Karon, are alright, and I reckon their lodgings should be ok too. I don't see as much of them as perhaps I should, but do drop by occasionally.
I think I know the Italian restaurant but cannot recall the name, and have never dropped in. There are several guest houses in the area that would be OK. Businesses there come and go.
Also consider near Kata Night Plaza, 150 metres to Kata Yai Beach, and 5-600 metres to the south end of Karon. It's guest houses are a better prospect now than a couple of years ago when it was surrounded by girlie bars. They have moved and it is quite genteel now. I'll probably be over that way to watch the All Blacks play the Springboks (rugby) at a sport's bar this weekend, so will get a few names.
Outside the Dec - Feb peak you should get rates of well under 1,000 baht a night, with a decent long stay discount. Now, in the depth of the low season 5-600 baht is common, and I have seen lower.
Hey Michael. Seriously thinking of another Thailand visit to Phuket. Do you have a recomendation of an inexpensive guest rm with a/c? want to do a 2 mth stay and limit the $$. Last visit was late 2008. Was thinking bout the Irish pub or "Italian" restaurant on the Karon beach area. Any suggestions?