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16 - 21 of 36 reviews
Reviewed December 9, 2012

The rooms in this GuestHouse are very very dated. Spider webs EVERYWHERE. As me and my boyfriend are petrified of spiders this made us check constantly for them. Although we found none, this gave us no comfort as it showed the place is lacking a cleaning routine.
Beds are rock solid.
Shower is literally over the toilet.
Overall it would be OK if the place was given a lick of paint and a good deep clean!! Has air con which is always a bonus! Until then worth a stay if on a budget and out of hotel a lot- we definitely appreciate the clean sheets, floors and bathroom where we are staying now! (the simple things!)

Date of stay: December 2012
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Becky S
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 3, 2012

North Star Guest House is a gem. I have visited Chiang Mai many times over several years. I've stayed in many Chiang Mai guest houses, and North Star is my first choice, above all.

It may take a discerning traveler to appreciate the reasons. If you are a backpacker simply seeking the company of other similar first-time travelers, you might not get it. But if you are in Thailand to experience real Thai neighborhood life, to make friendships among local residents of this picturesque neighborhood of small sois (Thai for "little lanes") -- your going to understand quickly why North Star is such a great place to set your anchor.

Pong, the Inn Keeper, is a cherished institution on the soi. Travelers and locals come to eat with her, talk about their romantic issues, tell stories, swap gossip and news from the neighborhhod. They bring "som tam' (papaya salad) and sticky rice to share with Pong and her guests or ask her to cook fresh fish from the market (Pong is a wonderful chef!) Pong gives counsel to all who seek it with humor and a biting wit (her English is quite good, too).

Pong is a passionate story-teller. She feels the stories she tells -- a very Thai Thai characteristic (though it may be a bit disarming to a button-down anglo-saxon ;-) Her heart is very big -- you can see that in the children and grandchild she raises under the same roof as the guesthouse. She respects the privacy of guests at the North Star -- one can come and go at any hour with no questions asked -- but for those who want to mix in, they are welcome like visiting members of the family.

And for those who want to trek or tour Chaing Mai, Pong is switchboard central -- she will arrange anything or everything requested at a very good price.

The rooms are clean and simple -- rustic even, though you can have free WiFi and air conditioning and TV accommodations at the cheapest rates in Chiang Mai. It isn't a holiday inn or a Hilton -- not right for travelers looking for a bland international hotel standard -- and probably not for those backpackers looking for a foreign ghetto in Chiang Mai were they can drink and sing football songs a crowd of fellow foreigners. But the honest hospitality, great price, and authentic local neighborhood ambiance are exactly the reasons why Pong's North Star Guest House is a lodging of choice for young Thais working in neighborhood businesses or at the Nigh Bazar just 15 minutes away. That's also why experienced Thailand hands who love the small soi style of the place (compete with native teak furnishings), yet it's close proximity to the nightlife of the action of the Taphae Gate area, make North Star their place of choice choice. For those who love the mix of neighborhood life and Pong's style of unadorned hospitality, humor, and great cooking North Star is a secret gem.

If you are a tourists looking for the company of other tourists, mainly...then you just may not get it. In that case, Pong's straightforward style, sincere hospitality, and the colorful local folks who mix in so famously with lodgers here may not be your cup of tea. That's OK, because there are lots of other places for you in Chiang Mai.

But if you are here to savor the pace of life in the small neighborhood, hear the mix of foreign and Thai voices on the small sois, and enjoy real and unpretentious Chiang Mai hospitality, you are going to love North Star Guest House! If you return often, as I do, this gem on Soi 2 will become your local digs, too!

Room tip: Make a reservation in advance to let Pong and her family reserve rooms with specific accommodations (TV, air conditioning v. fan, 2 beds or 1) or services (massage on arrival, scheduled treks, etc.) you may want. Tel: 053-278-190) or email: northstar_guesthouse@hotmail.com
Date of stay: April 2012
  • Trip type: Traveled with friends
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1  Thank Mark B
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 26, 2011

North Star GH is extremely basic, with rooms that try to be clean but don't always succeed. Expect holes in the walls.
After seing how the bed looked, we slept in our sleeping bags on top of the bed, but we don't think that there were any bed bugs.
Location is good, in a quiet neighbour (although some 50 year old British expats like to go around quite drunk and get into fights - not with backpackers anyway). Breakfast at the German place next door is a must do.
To conclude, North Star is very cheap, but most guest houses around are, so if I ever go back, I will try another one.

Date of stay: June 2011
  • Trip type: Traveled with friends
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2  Thank Pixxidix
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 15, 2011

My friend and I arrived at the North Star hot and exhausted one afternoon. We had been searching high and low for a hostel, but had one stipulation: we wanted to meet fellow travelers, and didn't want a place with no other guests. After checking out the rooms (which were basic but fairly clean) we specifically asked if the hostel was busy and if others were staying there. The owner promised that it was very busy. We then paid for 3 nights in advance (the rates were the cheapest we found in Chiang Mai for air conditioned rooms). We settled in, but soon realized there were, in fact, hardly any other guests at all. When we raised this concern with the owner, she immediately became very defensive and even aggressive. We told her we wanted to switch to a different hostel, but she refused to refund any of our money. After a prolonged argument, we finally agreed on a compromise of staying one night in a more expensive room - she refunded us the rest.

We would not stay at Top North again, and definitely would not recommend it. The atmosphere is dead and depressing, and the owner impossible to deal with (there were other issues such as a malfunctioning shower that she took no interest in rectifying). However, if you are looking for a dirt cheap and clean enough room for just a night or two, and don't care about ambiance at all...go for it!

Room tip: Try Top North - 20 steps away with pool!
Date of stay: April 2011
  • Trip type: Traveled with friends
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2  Thank GypsygirlCanuck
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 19, 2018 via mobile
Google Translation

Date of stay: January 2018
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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