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“Would never recommend or stay here again” 1 of 5 stars
Review of The Cocoon

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The Cocoon
Am River, Vang Vieng 40126, Laos   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #17 of 17 hotels in Vang Vieng
London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Would never recommend or stay here again”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2010

First of all we could not find the hotel as it was down a dark, quiet, muddy alley. Secondly we got to our room and could not see the bathroom floor for dead ants. When we complained and asked to move rooms, they were shocked that there were ants as the room had been checked just a few hours before we arrived! Very unlikely as there was a spider web which I walked into on the way in (unless these spiders are the quickest in the world at spinning webs - the door to our room had not been opened for days!). We were given a new room, no ants, but still a rubbish room. Old, dirty and uncomfortable. The bathroom was openplan - no shower curtain so after a shower the whole bathroom was soaking. I dread to think what bugs/rodents were scurring around in the night waking us up! We paid over US$100 for our 2 nights here thinking we would be staying in a nice B&B rather than the cheap hostels in town. I think the room would have been worth US$10 a night max! We stayed in a fab guesthouse in Luang Prabang, so the standard cannot be blamed on it being Laos!
The only saving grace was the amazing setting overlooking the river. We were only in Vang Vieng for the tubing which was excellent fun. Otherwise we probably would have left!!

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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23 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    1.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
luxembourg
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2010

When having a look at their internet site, the hotel seems to be a little paradise among nature. It is true that the surroundings are beautiful with an amazing view on the river and the mountains BUT:
- The rooms are really simple and do not correspond to the standard expected with the price we paid. There were many giant ants in the bathroom and the walls need to be repainted. No decoration and I felt I slept on a piece of wood.
We spent 2 nights there and guess what, thay did not come to clean the room at all. When we came back at night, the bed was not made...
- The surroundings are very noisy. Loud music plays until 2 a.m.
- Not much to eat at the breakfast.
- Bad path to enter the hotel.

However, the staff was friendly wth us and the purple bungalows are pretty.
If you want to stay in a better hotel, you should go at 'elephant crossing hotel' (were we had a great dinner).

Now, the staff is friendly, the view is amazing and

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2010

Staying for three nights in early Feb, my bag was stolen from my room on my last night. There was also theft of another person's wallet that same morning. The bungalows are close enough so that you cannot sleep due to the incessent noise of thumping music in to the early hours.

It is impossible to recommend this place on any level: It's incredibly expensive for what it is and the hostel at the top of the hill is better (having wifi) and 20,000 a night, instead of 200,000. The hill is treacherous and you'd be well advised to take a torch when returning at night.

Do not stay here, the "manager" did nothing and the Swiss owners refuse to reply to me. Please save yourself from the same fate as mine and go elsewhere.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 8, 2010

If you want the worst possible experience in a bungalow, then stay here. The staff are a bunch of light fingered thieves who see nothing wrong from stealing from guests. During a stay of 3 days, an entire rucksack was stolen from my friend's room in the space of 2 hours during dinner, whilst a few bungalows down, a woman's wallet was stolen in the space of 30 mins whilst she went to the hotel's breakfast room. Only an inside job could allow the thieves to know exactly what time the victims would be away. My friend suspects the cleaning staff had been fiddling with the locks on his bag for days before they decided to give up and take the entire thing because they finally realised they were too stupid to think they could work out how to open a combination lock.

Although they acknowledged the problem, they did nothing to help resolve the situation, bar driving us to the police station and refused to give me a direct contact address of the owner of the hotel so that I could make a complaint.

The bungalows themselves do not match their expensive price in any way. Pretty standard and with no space to put your bag nor things like toiletries etc. They were kept clean, but the badly built shacks enabled every creature possible to enter the room. The bungalows are set in a beautiful piece of land next to the Nan Song river, but it's spoilt by the booming music from "party island" that run from 6pm to 2am every night. Disappointing and an awful time. Never again.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hong Kong
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2010

The Cocoon is located in a nice spot by the river and the breakfast area offers panoramic views, with cattle and water buffalo roaming around the adjoining farmland. However, the upmarket Cocoon used to be known as the Riverside Cottages, which catered to the more budget end of the market. But the only thing that has changed is the name. Plus the construction of a handful of more expensive mauve coloured rooms. But the cottages are just that. Cheaply built shacks with cracks in the floorboards that offer a view to the ground below. The pool is very average and too cold to stay in long when we were there. The other big factor is the area just across the small creek is filled with ramshackle open-air bars that cater to backpackers will all manner of alcoholic drink and "happy shakes", and with music booming into the wee hours of the morning that made sleeping problematic, particularly on New Years Eve! The main point is the Cocoon is the hotel equivalent of mutton dressed up as lamb. Overpriced for what is pretty basic accommodation. Do the tubing while in Vang Viang though. A great day but go easy on the free shots and "happy shakes" before tackling the swings and zip lines over the river.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norway
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2010

Stayed 3 nights in a very nice bungalow. The location of the complex must be one of Vang Vieng's nicest....slitghtly off the back-packer-track. The restaurant offers a beautiful view (not hard in Vang Vieng :-) but the price level made me go elsewhere...

A word of warning: the hotel is at the time of writing fairly NEW: no tuk-tuk drivers (or anybody else) knew of its existance; I spent a couple of very hot & sweaty hours trying to find the place.... which in itself is a feat in miniscule Vanf Vieng. Do your homework: print a good map before you come..

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangkok
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2010

If you are first-timer to Vang Vieng, beware that this is not a perfect place for non-adventurous type. I travelled with my wife and two small children during this New Year holidays. Booking staff suggested to book to book two rooms as the room would be too cramped for four. But I declined why I should spend another USD55 for two small kids who still need to be under parent’s observation. At least she was honest. Credit for that, I guess.

While Cocoon offers everything as great as previous reviews mention, it’s definitely overpriced. You will be greeted with friendly and attentive staff who will did their best to help you with luggage and walk you to your clean room. Otherwise, his new Swiss boss will yell at him right in front of you. I saw he yelled at one female staff right in front of me. That doesn’t sound convincing to be bad, isn’t it.

Once you are at the room, the room is very small. We had a chance to check out three rooms in different types before checking in. The room we stayed, Maingkabula in which we booked in advanced but the reception gave us the other type whist checked in, was clean inside out but bathroom floor and wall were old and tainted with boiler that could not produce warm water. We asked to change to another room next door. We got it after the reception spend good 5-minute lecture of all the good reasons to stay in this wall-tainted room. In my mind, god! can't you see the wall is tainted and more importantly the boiler that is not working!

The quality of the room materials were poor compared to the rate. If no comparison, the qualities are just met other Vang Vieng bungalows’ standards i.e. wooden floor and ceiling, A/C, warm water, one 5-foot bed or two twin beds per room, a minibar-type refrigerator where the hotelier will charge you around USD15 – 25. The surroundings from the website look great and surely reflect the real things. However there’s no beach bench provided by the river for guest to chill out. The hotel doesn’t try to take its advantage by having its property by the river. The closet thing by the river is the Restaurant’s terrace which is used for serving breakfast. Staff told me I am welcome to chill here but on the dining tables?!

In sum, however, if you are with family especially like me with small children and want to visit the town, the Cocoon is probably the safest place if you wouldn’t mind spending that much. But if you just need a place to stop by along Vientiane and Luang Prabang without trying out Vang Viang’s nature trills, you’re better off skipping the town and move ahead to your final destination. Keep your $$$ in the pocket and wait for Chiang Mai where USD55 will get you a much nicer, bigger, and money well spent.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about The Cocoon

Address: Am River, Vang Vieng 40126, Laos
Location: Laos > Vientiane Province > Vang Vieng
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #17 of 17 hotels in Vang Vieng
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to the Cocoon! The Cocoon is a sanctuary, hidden amongst the trees of Vang Vieng, away from the noisy crowds. Set along the peaceful side of the Nam Song River, it is surrounded by incredible rock formations and forests, one of the most beautiful sights imaginable. ... more   less 

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