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“Trading on the view” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Elephant Crossing Hotel

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The Elephant Crossing Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Ban Viengkeo | (PO Box 5512, Vientiane), Vang Vieng, Laos   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 18 Hotels in Vang Vieng
Margaret River
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
45 hotel reviews
Reviews in 49 cities Reviews in 49 cities
62 helpful votes 62 helpful votes
“Trading on the view”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2009

Yes, the views are definitely the main attraction here and give this hotel an above average rating for me. The rooms are fairly basic but ours was clean. The bathroom was a little tired and looked as though there had been some home renovations done on it. The notices there seemed to suggest that guests might steal towels etc if not reminded that they were hotel property.

There is no lift and certainly no offer to carry bags was made. However we travel lightly and this was no problem. Moreover the hotel was operating under considerable difficulty on the day/night we were there as the electricity was totally off in the town until 5pm and after 7am the following morning. This seemed to be affecting morale at the front counter and it was hard to get a smile from the check in person. The Australian owner made no effort to speak to us but her mother was very friendly.

We ate at the hotel and dinner was about average- not startling. Breakfast was also not wonderful but I put this down to the lack of electricity.

I think the hotel definitely trades on its position, the seeming lack of attractive alternatives for anyone other than young people and on the fact that it is a mercifully quiet getaway from the backpacker scene. And yes, I would stay there again at least for a night or two.

  • Liked — The location
  • Disliked — Front desk
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled solo
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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253 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (48)
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Perth
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2009

Stayed at the Elephants Crossing mainly due to lack of alternatives. Read a review about the rudeness of staff and dismissed it, but when we arrived the receptionist was actually that rude. We checked in and asked to book a Bus ticket as the sign advertised that the hotel could do this. She said no not today come back tomorrow. We straight away went to town and got one at a travel agent.
The room and bed were fine and clean. The bathroom was terrible with bare piped taped up with electrically tape and not clean at all.

Breakfast was good and the view of the river and mountains are awesome.

TIP: Vang Vieng is a backpacker party town and the music is pumping till way into the early hours and can be heard anywhere.
The place next door to the Elephant looked nicer.

  • Liked — It was in Vang Vieng
  • Disliked — Rude staff, Bad Bathroom
  • Stayed January 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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San Francisco, California
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 12, 2008

We enjoyed our 2 night stay at the elephant crossing. The property is very peaceful and "zen" like. it feels like you are at a nice spa. Oh and the view is just amazing! The breakfast was great with a good variety, just make sure you wake up early enough for it. It is so delightful to enjoy a meal on the peaceful, quiet riverfront with the reflection of the mountain.

The rooms are small, but the view is amazing (provided that you have one with the view). The soap and shampoo provided by the hotel is great! Don't try to take them home though, its labeled "to be used during your stay only". I actually ended up buying some to bring home.

I did not have a bad experience with the owner (Aussie Woman). She was quite nice and courteous, greeting us with nice smiles at every interaction. We actually chatted for a bit.

One note: The deluxe room was good, though the shower head holder in our bathroom broke. We had to stay in a standard room the 2nd night because they were booked up. The standard (non-deluxe) room is pretty bare and has no view. There is no TV nor hooks to hang your clothes. Definitely go for the deluxe if available.

Highly recommended Hotel.

  • Liked — If I had to pick only one, then its the location
  • Disliked — dragging my rollerboard down a hill and through gravel before arriving at hotel
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Plymouth, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2008

We stayed here for 3 nights after a v late arrival from Luang Prabang. We too were seduced by the lovely views - a shame that they were hidden by clouds and rain for some of the time!

Room:

We stayed in a deluxe room on the first night. V big with a fridge, TV, aircon, bath tub etc. The decor was a bit tired and could do with a lick of paint / scrubbing. The view wasn't so great as it was only on the first floor.

We moved up to the top floor the next day - better view - but only a standard room. Much smaller and no fridge. Similar state of decor. They could fit a fridge in but choose not to at the mo.

The deluxe rooms were good value if you can negotiate a discount (350,000). The standard rooms are expensive at this rate. However, quite a decent breakfast is included - you can even get muesli / yoghurt / fruit rather than just eggs! You can top up your water for free too.

Location:

Great. Fab views, peaceful and only 5 mins into town for tubing / bars / restuarants.


Staff:

Seemed fine and quite helpful. No run ins with the owners (as mentioned in some reviews).

  • Liked — The amazing views
  • Disliked — The rooms could do with an update
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
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Sydney
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
53 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
97 helpful votes 97 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2008

This is a nice hotel on the side of the river with really excellent views.

My "deluxe" room was pretty basic but clean and I liked it. The rest of the hotel was quite pleasant and I loved sitting on the riverside with a cold beer and my book.

I found it hard to find decent food in Vang Vieng, so ate twice at the hotel and it was quite nice. Breakfast was good too.

Free wifi in the lobby worked on my balcony too.

Only problem was the loud-mouthed fellow guests yappering away whilst looking at the view from the deck in the morning.

  • Liked — Amazing Views
  • Disliked — The town of Vang Vieng was awful.
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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toronto
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2008

We stayed at the elephant crossing because we had read reviews on Trip advisor as well as from the lonely planet books.

I must say we were EXTREMELY disappointed.

The hotel owner (an Australian women) was very unfriendly and in some cases rude to some hotel guests.

The hotels calls itself a boutique hotel....hahahahah that is hilarious. the hotel is hardly boutique at all. Our room was quite shabby. The room was falling apart. There were huge gaps between the windows and outside, so every night we had to kills mesquitos that came into our room. We also had lizards in our room, that came in through the windows cracks. We had ants all over the bathroom. There was a moudly shower curtain in a shower that had no pressure at all. Our bathroom had open pipes, along the ceilings covered with duck tape. This is just to name a few things...

Every morning we woke up to the owners screaming children. Not a pleasant way to wake up in the morning on a relaxing getaway.

The lobby of the hotel was more of a day care for the owners children as well.

Breakfast was awful, fruit has bugs all over it, bread was stale, coffee was instant.

The only positive thing about this place was the view, but then all the hotels in this area have the same great view.

Had we not prepaid for our room, we would have found a different place to stay upon arrival.

I agree with someone else who called this place The elephant droppings.

  • Liked — The view
  • Disliked — everything else.
  • Stayed August 2008, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2008

(Note: This place is in Vang Vieng, not Vientiane as categorised on this site)

Wow, what a let down. I have spent 6 weeks in Laos and this was easily the most overpriced and substandard accommodation I stayed in.

The two twin rooms were a VERY pricey 350,000 kip each, which after a terrible exhange rate to USD and commission ended up costing about $95USD. This is in 'low season' too.

I naively relied on the mostly positive reviews on this site and on arrival it was raining heavily and we were told these were the 'last two rooms.' This turned out later to be an obvious lie as there were plenty of other empty rooms we later discovered. We made the mistake of taking both the rooms in the induced rush and a member of our group who wasn't fit for looking elsewhere.

These rooms were what you would usually pay around $14-16USD for, not $45. They were small, basic, and were in need of some fresh paint and maintenance.

Both these rooms had great views, and that's where the positives ended. Remotes for the TVs and aircons didn't work in either room. Both rooms had hundreds of ants in the toilet paper which was a nasty but funny surprise. The door in one room refused to lock. The towels in both rooms were also very dirty. The list went on...

The 'breakfast' was a joke. We walked down to the riverside with our tokens to be met with a buffet consisting of 1 small baguette, a quarter of a watermelon, an almost empty bowl of cereal and some juice. This was at 9:00am. After having our juice we immediately left as there wasn't enough food for even one of us, let alone three. Successive groups and couples did the same thing as we did as the morning went on.

All in all this place was an epic let down and we were desperate to just get out to somewhere else. The views were nice, yes, but so are the views at many of the other nearby places. We moved next door and ended up getting a family riverside bungalow for only $30USD. We met several other groups/couples who did exactly the same whom with we had a good laugh about how we all relied on tripadvisor.

A staff member at the Elephant Crossing even noted that they used to work next door and that it was 'better'. And for only a third of the price, perfect!

I would definitely not recommend this overpriced and poor serviced 'hotel.' I ponder whether the fact the owner is Australian has something to do with the good reviews on this site.

Cheers

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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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 Elephant Crossing Hotel

Address: Ban Viengkeo | (PO Box 5512, Vientiane), Vang Vieng, Laos
Location: Laos > Vientiane Province > Vang Vieng
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 18 Hotels in Vang Vieng
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — The Elephant Crossing Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 36
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Elephant Crossing Hotel
Hotel Elephant Crossing

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