Opinion A perfect hotel to escape from the stresses of modern life. Escape to your own tropical island in the middle of the Mighty Mekong River.
Advantages Beautiful setting in a tropical garden and all rooms have a river view and their own balcony. A gorgeous pool with plenty of shade from tree
Disadvantages There is not really any wifi so you are really cut off from the outside world.
GETTING TO THE HOTEL In order to get onto the island we had to climb down a steep set of ‘steps’ on a river bank and through a larger river boat with cabins that cruise up the Mekong and then onto our boat. This was hilarious. It was like a wooden raft built onto two of the local rowing boats. An outboard motor was attached at the back and a simple ‘fence ‘was built around the square raft. We sat on plastic chairs on this raft and chugged across the river looking like lord and lady Muck. Our bags were on the raft behind us just on the boards. When we arrived on the island we stepped off our raft boat onto a bamboo ‘road’ and climbed into a small trailer behind a ‘Chinese Buffalo’ which is what the locals call their mini tractors which look like ride in mowers but with a very long steering shaft. We were then driven in this trailer up the split bamboo ‘road’ over the wide expanse of sand up to the gates of the hotel.
OUR ROOM Our room was on stilts and so we had to walk up about six wooden steps to get to the door which opened with a normal large key. Inside the room was a decent size with polished wooden floors and wooden walls. The furniture was all solid wood too and locally made. The impression was one of luxury but in a very local traditional look. On the floor was a local rug with was very nice but did slip around a bit if you were not careful when walking around the room. The bed was a big king or queen sized bed made up with fresh cotton white sheets and dressed with two Laos local silk scarves across the bed. The pillows were a little on the hard side but I did manage to sleep with them. At the end of the bed were two wooden slatted case stands or table like things to put stuff on. On either side of the bed there was a light but only one side had a bedside table. On the wooden walls were several pictures, some of old photographs and some paintings but all very tasteful and classy. In one corner was an air-conditioning unit, two comfortable chairs and a small round coffee table. There was also a ceiling fan so you could choose which you wanted to use. On the wall with the air-conditioning unit was a double door with shutters leading on to a small balcony. We did enjoy sitting on here and watching the local herdsman with his cows walking down to the river to graze and have a drink. From here we could also see Champasak across the river and the hill below which was the magnificent Wat Phou temple. There were windows on three sides of the room and they all had cream heavy linen curtains which gave privacy bit didn’t darken the room. THE BATHROOM Once again this was wooden floored and traditional looking. The shower was good but only had a curtain around it so it was quite hard to keep the water in the shower tray. A trolley held the toiletries and towels while a huge bamboo rack on the wall was great for drying the towels. The basin and toilet were normal and not anything unusual. The toilet roll was ona bamboo rack as well which was quite novel. The toiletries provided were all in china dishes which avoided the use of plastic mini bottles. This saved waste and also was more economical. The toiletries used were also environmentally friendly.
The hotel is on a small island , Don Daeng in the Mekong river in the Champasak area of Southern Laos. It is an idyllic relaxing escape from all the hustle and bustle of life generally. The garden was really lovely with full grown trees and so many different tropical flowers. We spent a good hour one morning walking around the gardens taking photos of the beautiful flowers in the garden.
LUNCH WE opted for snack type food at lunch time as we were not exactly doing a lot. We had a soup and spring rolls I think on both days and enjoyed iced lemon tea. There was often quite a few in the restaurant at lunch time as people came to the hotel and island just for the day and to use the pool as this was the only pool in the area apparently. Lunch and dinner were not included in our tariff but breakfast was. DINNER We opted each night for the set meal as it was by far the best value. There was an a la carte menu but if you ordered from that it was much more expensive. The set menu did change daily and was a selection of local Laos dishes. Both meals were really tasty and nicely prepared but as this was towards the end of our stay in Laos we were beginning to get just a little tired of the same four of five dishes. Drinks were reasonable prices and we stuck to Beer Lao and I sampled their cocktails, one a night was quite enough! BREAKFAST This was pretty basic. Fruit juice and coffee or tea as well as fresh fruit followed by the inevitable French bread and jam or eggs whichever way you wanted them cooked. I don’t eat eggs so it was fruit and fresh French bread with local jam for me once again but it was enough really and more than I usually have at home.
THE POOL This was beautiful; rectangular and bright, bright blue with a backdrop of the beach and the river. Around the pool were palm trees and other tropical flowers and at night the reflections of the lights looked just amazing. There were changing rooms for those day guests but I confess I didn’t inspect these. You could also borrow bicycles to ride around the traffic free island.
There was no really but that was the charm of the place so it seems unfair to mark it down for this
Good to know If you want somewhere to stay and just chill but be cut off from all modern technology then this place is perfect. They do have wifi but I wouldn’t bother trying to use it as you will lose the will to live as a snail would get across the river quicker.
Value for money estimation