Luang Prabang where the Mekong and Nam Khan rivers meet has charming accommodation options – downtown and around – that showcase its rich local heritage, as well as its French colonial past. If you are looking for an accommodations in this city, here are some suggestions for you.
The Mekong Riverview is in an enviable position on the tip of the Luang Prabang peninsula, where the waters divide between the Mekong and the Nam Khan rivers.
Most of the elegant rosewood rooms face the river bend, which is said to represent the head of a naga (dragon-serpent totem). The best rooms have wraparound balconies, from which you can watch life paddle by on the river. However, it’s the thoughtful extras that clinch the deal: remote-controlled beds for propping up your weary back, homemade banana cake at teatime, a map given on arrival marked with insiders’ tips, and a glass of wine on the house served at the restaurant deck on the river to ease guests into Luang Prabang’s languid pace.
My Dream Resort
My Dream Resort embodies calm from the moment you approach the grounds through a bamboo archway. Rooms – illuminated by paper lanterns and cooled by white ceiling fans – are decorated with delicate silver stenciling and are a model of minimalist chic. Spend your days lolling on the balconies that peer over the lush gardens of teak, banana and coconut palms which roll down to the Nam Khan river, or bathe in the turquoise pool with its backdrop of red hibiscus. When you want to move, cycle the 15 minutes to Luang Prabang via the old bridge, or the few minutes to the Dyen Sabai restaurant for lunch by the river before crossing the Nam Khan to downtown by bridge or boat, depending on the season.
The four rooms of the gorgeous Mekong Villa sit in the grounds of the Ock Pop Tok Living Craft Center. Just two rooms facing the Mekong have terraces but all four are beautifully furnished, one with a huge trunk-cum-desk and a red bathroom. You can hop from your bedroom to the alfresco Silk Road Cafe for a breakfast of wafer-thin and tasty Mekong river weed and buffalo chilli sauce washed down with mulberry tea, and then head to the craft centre to learn dyeing, weaving, batik and bamboo crafts. You’ll need to take the free shuttle to get in and out of town, but the leafy location, great cafe, buzzy atmosphere, onsite classes and textile designs of the rooms more than make up for that.
Young designer Phouvilath Sengakhom has created an stylish game-changer near the centre of Luang Prabang. His small urban haven has a mainly monochrome palette and an alfresco turquoise-tiled pool. Rooms have grey, silver and charcoal throws on large beds, Thai copper sinks in the bathrooms, roomy showers, and varnished concrete walls. Guests can lounge on chocolate fabric sun beds, and dine next to a waterfall in the garden restaurant, before cycling off to the Buddhist temples and French colonial cafes of downtown. The silver, gold and yellow stone feng shui ensemble next to the restaurant ensures that Phouvilath’s investment won’t be washed away by the stream behind the building.
Indigo House Hotel
The Indigo, in a central location, has bucked the “precious wood” trend of most of the hotels in the former royal capital and has a fresh look inspired by the indigo colours of the Hmong tribe. The lobby’s smart blue chairs, white tables and white umbrellas are popular with young locals, who hang out here chattering on their phones. The clean lines of the spacious rooms are complemented with indigo, royal and navy blue accents, and the standout room spread has a white domed ceiling. An upstairs terrace offers views of the entire main street and night market, and the hotel is a couple of minutes from the fascinating morning market, with its wet and dry wares.
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