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“The owners are fantastic!”

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Vanilla Place Guest House
Ranked #47 of 379 Hotels in Chiang Mai
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“The owners are fantastic!”
Reviewed November 14, 2010

We stayed at Vanilla Place for 4 nights at the end of October. The room was clean, comfortable and the air-con was quiet and efficient. The bathroom is clean and is open-plan. Mr Kem and his team could not do enough for us. Mr Kem arranged car rental and for a tuk-tuk driver to escort us to the station to ensure we had the right onward VIP bus tickets to Chiang Rai. He forgoes his own commission in order to make sure his guests get the best deal. He is really an outstanding host.

Pros:

Quiet location – only 10 mins walk from centre of Chiang Mai and 2 mins walk from the Night Market
The hospitality of Mr & Mrs Kem – lovely people and their friendly dog, Happy!
Room is scrupulously clean
Security. We left our stuff in the room with no qualms whatsoever

Cons:

None!

Mr & Mrs Kem were very welcoming and helpful throughout our stay. We were delighted to meet them and were very happy indeed!

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank nikas77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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585 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (58)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Thai first
  • Any
English first
Bangalow, Australia
Level Contributor
19 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed November 6, 2010

We stayed 5 nights, rented a motor scooter on Sri Donchai rd 300 baht a day and rode out through the foothills, got lost and found some amazing hot springs at Pongkhaw, private rooms for 150 b. Rode up to Doi Ithanon highest point in Thailand, great ride and scenery. The guesthouse is very central and we walked most places when not riding. The hosts are beautiful people who love to help you find the best deals and direct you to the places of interest. We will definitely come back to Vanilla Place.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank JANET W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangkok
1 review
Reviewed October 14, 2010

This hotel came recommended by someone who lives in Chiang Mai...and it did not disappoint! It is not a fancy american hotel but was very enjoyable, clean and inexpensive- with a taste of true Thai hospitality! We were met at the airport by Khun Ting (who's english was very good) and taken to the hotel where we were greeted by the owners with cold water and a chance to discuss our plans. Our every wish was catered too, including restaurant recommendations and an emergency laundry express pick-up and delivery. Khun Kem and Khun Kat were extremely gracious, caring and went out of their way to greet us each day and did everything to make our stay enjoyable. Each day was arranged for us from elephant trekking, to jungle zip lines to a personal taxi for the day to take us around the city. All we had to do was be ready downstairs at the pre-arranged time, and to make sure we had the bottled water Khun Kem made sure we had with us for the day! :>

Unfortunately, we stayed at this hotel the same weekend as the previous reviewer with twins! Their behavior was so horrendous that I found myself apologizing to the owners of the hotel for the children's behavior! I had to reprimand the boys for playing with a fan while mom did nothing. They were loud and Khun Kem even went out of his way NOT to put us in a room near them because of the noise level. Other than guests, we don't have a single complaint!

My parents are in their late 70's and are visiting Thailand at Christmas...we have already made reservations at VANILLA PLACE! We love Chiang Mai and Vanilla Place!

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank moosetracksbangkok
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed October 5, 2010

We stayed at Mr. Kem's Vanilla Place back in March 2010 based on TripAdvisor reviews. Rooms are clean, safe, comfortable and and you can't bet the location. It was nice to have a room with air conditioning that really worked in Thailand! The breakfast was a little lacking compared to other places we stayed, but not a deal-breaker for us. Mr. Kem helped us organize a day trip and a cooking class, both met our expectations. The last night we were there I left my newly purchased handbag in a bar close by. We had to leave early the next day and left it behind. Mr. Kem took it upon himself to ring up the bar, get my handbag and send it to me in the US. AMAZING kindness and generosity!

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank awbski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Bradford, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviewed September 28, 2010

Having stayed here in March, my travel partner were most impressed by the service offered by Kem and his wife. They couldn't have done more for us in terms of hospitality and efficiency. They provided maps for us, gave us excellent directions and recommendations for places to stay and eat. Booked tours and jungle treks on our behalf, negotiating discounts for us. Also organised a private driver for the entire day to take us to several temples and beauttiful local attractions. Offered free internet too.

Were picked up ontime from our flight and taken straight to our hotel. Excellent location right next to the Night Bazaar market. Backpacked around the world for 6 months and found nowhere that compared to this place!

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank lucymarsden1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
1 review
Reviewed September 23, 2010

Stayed a week at Vanilla Place and never once missed the comforts of home. Very friendly and helpful owner who runs the place with his wife. Warm, personal, and attentive service in a cozy setting.

Rooms are air-conditioned, tastefully furnished and equipped with modern appliances. Internet access via wifi available in all the rooms. Shared computer also provided in the dining room. Laundry service was fast and cheap. If staying more than a few days, skip the balcony in the front facing rooms for the quieter rooms facing the trees behind.

Mr. Kem's (the owner's) hospitality started as soon as we made reservations online via email. He confirmed our booking and arranged for complimentary pick up from the airport to Vanilla Place. He also booked us on an adventure tour with a reputable operator, arranged for local tour to nearby sites as well as getting us car rental while pointing out major sights to visit.

Vanilla Place is located 5 minutes walk to the Night Bazaar, 10 minutes stroll to Warorat Market, and 20 minutes to the old city's Tapae Gate by foot. Tuk tuks and taxis pass by frequently at all times of day.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank yungjuan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
1 review
Reviewed September 21, 2010

On the basis of the great reviews I read about this guesthouse I decided to stay here with my family (spouse and 2 young kids) but was very disappointed for the following reason:

- on our request, the owner Mr Kem, organized for a car/driver for us to do some sightseeing. Halfway into the trip, the driver just snapped - he made racist remarks at us and left us stranded about 1 hour away from the city in place which is up in the hills and where taxis are very hard to get. Thankfully, I had the cell number of the driver we had used the previous day and he made arrangements to come get us. This experience really shook us up - never before have we been at the receiving end of such disparaging, racist slurs or had someone leave us stranded in the middle of nowhere in a foreign country. When I reported this to Mr Kem, who had arranged for this driver, he really did not have much to say or do about this. It was business as usual for him. I was very disappointed with his attitude and would have much appreciated if he had taken up this matter with the driver and communicated that such an unprofessional attitude is not acceptable.

Additionally, the guesthouse is on a very busy street. So, if one is traveling with young kids it is not advisable.

The rooms though small were clean and the breakfast was very basic. The location though is very convenient.

Sonia
San Francisco

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank sonia080
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VanillaPlace, Manager at Vanilla Place Guest House, responded to this review, September 30, 2010
Dear Sonia,

While I apologize that you have been disappointed at the inconvenience of your stay. We have never ever reply the reviews from our guests before until now we must.
First of all, thank you for staying with us. And second of all we are fully prepared to take the responsibility for the overall standard and service provided at the guesthouse.
The following things that you all would see after this does not mean that we try to make an excuse. But, when something went wrong, there must be some reasons.

- About the car and the driver.

I was NOT a travel agent, I am just a little guesthouse in the big city.
At the first day, you would like to go somewhere with the local red pick up truck which hardly to notice which one could speak English well enough to full fill your desire. I took times to find one for you that day because you denied to go with the one who could not speak English. At last, you got one and his name is Tong who really impressed you.

On the next day, you arranged a trip with Mr. Tong by yourself, but Mr. Tong sent other driver(Mr. Yai)to you instead (the one that you had the problem with)
I WAS NOT THE ONE WHO ARRANGE HIM FOR YOU and it opposed to the thing you wrote
That means we absolutely had no idea who he is and how his behavior.
And when you met him, seems both of you could get along well. There was no sign that the racist things that you were talking about would happen.
If the racist things would really happen on the way of the trip, there was probably something went on between you and the Mr.Yai which really got on one of you or Mr.Yai’s nerves enough. And I could not really help it.

All the things I could do,was just trying to get you back to the town safely, but seems you just took out on me and my staff.

However, Mr.Yai the driver also reported me that you would like to go deep into the Samerng district up to the hill (which not on a plan and he already denied to go there since before the car started) After the hard rain from the night before with his sedan car, so he denied because he would not take a risk for the flash flood which could happen in the rain season and the swerved mudded road.

After he denied your order, then you just grabbed your belongings and left to the other taxi nearby without any payment. (I got to pay him for you myself)
And I guess the new taxi denied to go there also, that was why you called to my staff for help and I knew that she has tried her best.

- About the room and the service

You made the reservation via phone with me before you arrived and stayed one night. I sent the driver to pick you up from the airport.
But, when you arrived and about to checked in, you asked if you could see the rooms before making the decision. After took times to see all the rooms then you decided to go to another hotels even you already booked with me, I prepared the room and also the transportation from the airport to OUR GUESTHOUSE, But you rejected us and that was not enough, you also USED OUR TRANSPORTATION to go find some other places. (the driver have had to drive around the town and that costs and I have to pay for that)
In the end, you returned to my guesthouse and took just one room for 4 of you.(2 adults and 2 twin kids)
You complained that the room was too small for you. Of course it was. Because the room is made to fit for only 2 persons. And you did not want to have an extra bed cause it costs 200THB per night. ( for the hotel’s common rules, you must have been charged for the extra person added, but I charged you nothing even continental breakfast with milk and fruit for 2 childs over (it's fair ?)
Vanilla Place Guesthouse is located in the middle of Chiangmai City, it is the down town area, so no doubt that would be crowed and noisy.

There were so many guests stayed with us with their kids with several ages and they did not have any problem with the location of the guesthouse.

By the way, it was me and my staff that have to deal with your out of control twin boys. I am a manager, but I often have to be a baby-sitter for your kids because you just let the kids ran around the guesthouse and went outdoor and headed to the street by themselves without your eyes on.

They would have been crashed by cars if I did not grab him fast enough.
Every morning, other guests in the guesthouse were disturbed by the yelled and screamed from your kids just like the noise from the street that disturbed you.

Anyway, Vanilla Place guesthouse is just couples years old little guesthouse that try to grow up in the big city. We are trying our best to serve and fill up every customers’s desires.
But, there is one thing that we knew and realized that we can not please the whole world. We truly hope that your next trip, you would find some other place that perfect enough for you and your family.
We're try to service and take care your family as well as we can like all our guests when they are stay with our small guesthouse no charge more for the taxi, tour or activities full discount for our commission with we're arrange for them, I sware! (you can see our guests review on tripadvisor)
Thank you for your review,
Kem.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Vanilla Place Guest House

Property: Vanilla Place Guest House
Address: 73 / 2-3 Charoenprated Rd | Tombon Changklan, Chiang Mai 50100, Thailand
Location: Thailand > Chiang Mai Province > Chiang Mai
Amenities:
Hotel Style:
#10 Best Value Hotel in Chiang Mai
#25 Romantic Hotel in Chiang Mai
#31 Family Hotel in Chiang Mai
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Vanilla Place Guest House 2*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Vanilla place a boutique guesthouse located at the heart of Chiangmai. Our 15 beautifully decorated rooms can offer you the convenience and comfort like you are living in your own house. All rooms are fully furnished with teak wood. Night Bazaar is around 5 minutes walk and we're also close to all tourism areas such as Anusarn market, Ta Pae and Rim Ping, which can be reached very easily. Warm welcome is awaiting for you! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Vanilla Place Guest House Hotel Chiang Mai
Vanilla Place Hotel
Vanilla Place Chiang Mai

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