A friend and I booked the Royal Penguin for 3 nights in advance of a trek, and for 3 nights after (the latter nights booked because we were so satisfied with our initial stay and dreamed of this hotel while on our trek). What a find! When I booked the hotel, there were only about 7-8 reviews online, and the hotel was offering 20% off the rooms, a nice enticement to stay while the new property builds up its name. I spent days sifting through TripAdvisor for Kathmandu lodging and there seems to be some seriously intense competition in this city, leading to some fake reviews for other properties.
Make no mistake about this one: the service is exceptional, the staff extraordinarily and genuinely friendly (especially Laxmi, the Assistant Manager), the food very good, the rooms spotless, and the location wonderful, in Thamel but on JP Road, slightly away from Tiger Balm hawkers. Welcome drinks were offered along with genuine smiles. We are Canadian, and when we walked into our room, there was a 2-foot high model CN Tower and Canadian flag waiting to greet us. It's one of the many touches that truly made us feel like we were at home. No request was too big or small - luggage storage was free, extra toothbrushes were brought up within seconds, and a farewell iced tea lemonade was right on the mark. The Annapurna Room (#21) is right next to the gym and massage room, making the post-trek trip for my deep tissue massage literally 10 seconds long. Decor was lovely - hand carved teak wood in the dining room, glass sculptures in the room, and stunning chandeliers mixed style with the fun quirkiness boutique hotels should have. NB: they have a backup generator, so load sheds have minimal impact here.
The owner of the trekking agency we used summed it up nicely: "Wow - your place is nicer than the Hyatt!" I'd also add: it's probably under half the price too. Have fun. Be at home. Sleep in. Enjoy.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Well-positioned in Thamel, Royal Penguin Boutique Hotel is the ideal point of departure for your excursions in Kathmandu. Set 0.0 Km from the excitement of the city, this 3.5-star hotel commands an excellent location and provides access to the city's biggest attractions. A haven of rest and relaxation, the hotel will offer total renewal just steps away from the city's numerous attractions such as Kathesimbhu Stupa, Kathmandu Guest House Minitheatre, Gandharba Culture and Art Organisation.Royal Penguin Boutique Hotel offers impeccable service and all the essential amenities to invigorate travelers. Top features of the hotel include meeting facilities, laundry service/dry cleaning, tours, restaurant, bar/pub.Step into one of 13 inviting rooms and escape the stresses of the day with a wide range of amenities such as television LCD/plasma screen, separate shower and tub, bathtub, extra long beds (> 2 meters), coffee/tea maker. The hotel offers wonderful recreational facilities such as garden, sauna, fitness center, massage to make your stay truly unforgettable. When you are looking for comfortable and convenient accommodations in Kathmandu, make Royal Penguin Boutique Hotel your home away from home. ... more less
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