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Reviewed June 7, 2011

The Orchid is a hidden gem and sanctuary amid Beijing's bustling hutongs. I'm not even sure where to begin...The rooms are beautiful and the beds are so wonderfully comfortable. I can't recall the last time I slept so well! Because there are so few rooms, the hotel and courtyard feel very private and peaceful. In the morning, I dined outside on a gorgeous patio where I was served a (delicious) complimentary breakfast made by the co-owner, who is a terrific chef. Both owners take such pride in the hotel and go to great lengths to make your stay comfortable and satisfying. I witnessed them on several occasions helping non-Chinese-speaking guests by ordering drivers and other services over the phone.

I can't stress enough how beautiful the design, architecture and furnishings of the Orchid are. I slept in two rooms over the course of my stay. The Lookout room is simple and gets great sunlight (you can also see the Drum Tower from there). It's on the second floor, which is close to the kitchen and patio. The second room I stayed in was one of the Three Garden rooms (see photo below) which was incredible! There was a side room next to the bed which housed an indoor grass and bamboo garden and a hardwood floor space great for meditation or playing if you're bringing kids. I loved that room. If you can book it, you won't regret it. All the rooms have basically the same bathroom, which has a rainforest shower and Western amenities.

Now to the bar. The Orchid has a beer on tap brewed at Great Leap Brewing, which is quickly becoming one of the most popular and beloved microbreweries in Beijing. Aside from that, their wine list is very good but the social factor is even better. On the weekends, the bar gets a nice crowd of ex-pats, locals and guests. Even on nights when I was too tired to stay up late, I could not hear a peep from anyone in the bar from my room. Everyone is so friendly there, it's a great place to meet people, whether you're traveling alone like i was, or you're with someone. On the weekdays, the bar/lobby is still friendly and social, but a little more quiet.

The location of the Orchid is perfect, too. It's just a 10-minute walk to Nan Luo Gu Xiang, one of the greatest shopping streets in the city. In between you'll find everything you need from authentic cuisine, shopping, and taxis to other tourist attractions.

All in all, the Orchid is a mature, secluded, relaxing and romantic escape with a laid-back and humble atmosphere. Please do yourself the favor and stay there on your next visit to Beijing.

Room Tip: With only 10 rooms you can't go wrong!
  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled solo
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4  Thank fayemurman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 24, 2011

This place was recommended to me by a close friend, and I am grateful for the tip.
It's a very new place, and they seem to be quite conscious of making a good impression. The service was great, the manager was quick to give us tons of advice on places to go, how to get there, where to eat, etc. Really beyond the call of duty.
The place itself is quite striking, both beautiful and authentic looking, but still having all the Western-style amenities that are, quite frankly, pretty important for us.

The rooms were not huge, but were new, clean and well-decorated.

Perhaps best of all, the location was really central for all the main sites.

I just wish them to keep up the great start.

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank dehr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 20, 2011

This place was recommended to me by a friend who knows the owner (a Canadian guy from Montreal) and I initially was quite wary about a "courtyard" hotel. I used to work in Beijing before the Olympics, so I know the city and the different types of places to stay at, fairly well. Too many old creaky courtyard buildings in hutongs with fresh coats of paint advertise themselves as "authentic" experiences and charge and arm and a leg for it, but I have my personal comfort zone and cold showers and drafty windows don't cut it for me. This friend's an architect like myself though, so he has a good idea of what I like and don't like.

Usually I stay with friends when I visit Beijing now and then, but this time I was bringing along a slightly picky girlfriend who had never been to China, so I wasn't sure how she'd like the idea of staying in a traditional neighbourhood, but I wanted to give her a taste of the historic side of the city that I liked so much when I lived there.

The place was difficult to find and the entrance is so hidden away that if you blink, you miss it. So I was beginning to think this was going to be a disaster of a trip when I called them up to get directions. Turns out that I was only meters away (the english names of restaurants on the street are useful reference points), I just hadn't looked far enough down an entry corridor to see their sign.

Once we walked down that little alleyway (past the open side door of a restaurant kitchen), I was completely shocked and impressed by what I saw. Can't say I've ever seen anything like this, a mix of modern finishes with restored courtyard buildings in some sort of mash-up. From that point forward, everything was just top notch. They just opened recently, so everything is brand new.

The best word to describe this place is sanctuary. There's a central garden area that all the rooms open into, and there's a couple of large rooftop decks to hang out on. The furnishings were really unique and well done. Rustic and obviously custom made, but impressively hefty. The bed was firmer than most and had a layer of memory foam on top. neither of us had slept on that before and it was a bit weird - kind of like a delayed reaction water bed effect, but very comfortable. Hot water took longer than I expected when I showered, but that was probably the only negative for me. The little touches like the little soaps and bathrobe usually don't do much for me, but were noticed by my girlfriend.

Being a new place, they only had one or two other rooms occupied for most of the week we were there, so we got a tour of the other rooms. Looks like no two rooms are the same, as some have sleeping lofts, others have platform beds, some have private gardens, and one even has a private roof deck. It was pretty amazing from a design point of view.

Everything you want is within walking distance. Go climb the Drum Tower. Have drinks on the lakefront. Go across the street for the beef and coriander potstickers at Mr. Shi's Dumplings. And also ask the Canadian owner Joel for directions to the tiny microbrewery run by an American that's about a 10-15 minute walk away. The nearest subway is about the same distance in the opposite direction, but I still remember enough Mandarin to be able to tell taxi drivers how to get places, so we did that when we went to other parts of the city.

I've always liked the houhai/gulou area as a place to hang out , but I'd never thought of staying there since most accomodations in the area are hostel type places. This place changes my mind totally. It made for a great home base for when you want something nicer to impress someone, or if you're looking for a secluded place with creature comforts.

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank spacemanspiff007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
theorchidbeijing, Owner at The Orchid Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded August 30, 2011

Thanks for the kind words and extremely detailed review!
We love being described as a sanctuary..... In fact there is nothing more fun for us than escorting new guests down our somewhat filthy and ordinary entrance alley that we share with the neighbours to come to our front gate. Everything suddenly changes beyond that point and we really get a kick out of that affects our new guests. Most enjoy it, some don't. But it must be said --- if you are looking for grand, well-groomed hotel driveways with a massive front door, you might have picked the wrong hotel....! On a similar note, do read and print out our directions as posted on the website since we are NOT easy to find and that is a good thing in some ways (just not on the first day). I don't know what we would do without Mr. Shi's dumplings across from The Orchid. We'd be 10x more invisible without his wonderful presence just across out main entrance lane.
As for the bed --- yes, it's quite different than most, and from our experience this is a much needed difference!
Slow hot water is one of the issues we are somewhat stuck with. It mostly annoys us that we all must waste a minute's worth of water to wait for it to turn hot. Of course that's only a problem that affects about 3-4 of the furthest rooms from the hot-water tank... but still..

Please do come again soon, we'd love to see what new insight you might have to offer after a years-worth of open-business here!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 13, 2011

Great stay, clean, decent value, romantic. Makes the Hutongs feel like home. I cannot get over how many people use bikes in Beijing.

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled on business
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1  Thank Retrocell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 7, 2011

The Orchid Hotel is located in a Hutong within the second ring road of Beijing. So very downtown. Nearest subway station is 15 minutes walk, but this summer a new station at 3 minutes will be opened.

The hotel is brand new and it shows. The rooms are decorated with nice furniture, the amenities are of good quality, packed in the sweetest purse ever seen. Rooms comes with bathrobes!

The owner used to be a tea-trader, so make sure to try his teas. And they probably serve the best beer to be found in Beijing.

One advice: book the airport pick up. 200Yuan is one of the lowest airport pick ups you can get in Beijing and not having to search for the hotel on arrival is well worth the money.

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank chiel188633
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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