Firstly, hotel reviews. I went during the peak season, so prices of hotel was very high and overpriced. I stayed in Alis Hotel. To me it was very expensive! There were others that were cheaper or more expensive, but I considered the distance to the shop, and thought Alis was the best, but sad to say, I was wrong. As most of the hotels in Ao Nang, is not far away from shops. So as long as you stay in Ao Nang, you will be able to see shops everywhere. The picture of the hotel on the website was so alluring, but it wasn't exactly the same. I paid about 88USD per room per night. The hotel was a bit run down. Comparing to where I come from, I could get a better hotel for that price. The breakfast was alright. They provided free internet access, which was good. I must admit they have quite a nice, small swimming pool and their interior has quite nice design. Otherwise, it was very basic. Don't expect too much from this hotel, it is just a small boutique hotel.
TIP: To get to this hotel or all other hotels in Ao Nang,you will have to get airport transfer from the hotel or either get a cab, because it is some distance away from the airport.
From Alis Hotel(or just in front of Alis Hotel),you will be able to see Pakasai Hotel.Pakasai Hotel,is a luxury hotel with 4 or 5 stars. If you don't mind spending the money, or would like luxury getaway, Pakasai could be your choice. Their swimming pool is way bigger than alis hotel.
If you are looking for a cheaper hotel, or a budget hotel, I would recommend, Ao Nang Sunset Hotel. I went and have a look at the hotel, because before I make my decision I considered to stay in this hotel as it was cheaper than Alis hotel. From the look of it, it is quite good for a budget hotel and cheaper for Alis Hotel. The staff were very friendly when we enquired about the hotel.
Another hotel, that I would highly recommend would be Peace Laguna Hotel. I considered this hotel before booking Alis Hotel. From the website, the hotel looks very beautiful, unfortunately there were no rooms available. I had a chance though of visiting my friends who were staying in that hotel and they kindly showed us around. It was really pretty, just as the website, my friend stayed in a private cottage, so it was very beautiful and extra special, not to mention the price too. They have a big swimming pool(if that is important for you). If I ever visit Krabi again, this would be my first choice.
Please bear in mind that all three hotels does not have a beach front. If you are looking for a beach front then this four hotels would not be your choice.
I would say there will be not much use staying in Krabi town, unless you like the town, but if you are going for island hopping, and have limited days, staying in Ao Nang area, would be a better choice.
If you are on a honeymoon, or special occasion, pampering yourself, or would like a beachfront hotel. Try looking for hotels on Railey or Koh Lanta hotels.