Just keep going on trip advisor, that's what helped me. Don't worry about getting anywhere close to the beach, it's not that good anyway. If you think you'll go into Patong lots, stay there. Tuk-Tuks aren't that cheap and they all have set prices, you can't barter. It's 300baht each way (around $12) from karon beach to Patong.
I have been to phuket 4 times (and Thailand 7 times) and I personally prefer Kata to Karon. Avoid patong at all costs, in my opinion. Fun for an afternoon/evening, but that's about it.
Marina Phuket is between Karon and kata and is lovely. For a really amazing experience you can't go past The Boathouse on kata beach. Fabulous place! For a cheaper option on kata beach check out Kata Beach Resort.
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