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“Shambhala great surprise”
Review of Shambhala Palace

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Shambhala Palace
Ranked #7 of 374 Hotels in Lhasa
Reviewed April 30, 2014

We walked down the back alley past the pungent smell of the yak butter and pushed back the heavy curtain that acts as the door to find a lovely, small boutique very Tibetan hotel in the Shambhala. The rooms were clean, the bathroom and shower was good and the restaurant was a real surprise. Don't be misled, this is still Tibet so there is no heat and you can't drink the tap water or put paper in the toilet bowl, but aside from those regional problems, this place is a real gem. Great location, excellent food and a friendly staff make this a great place to stay if you are going to Lhasa and don't want the typical western hotel.

Room Tip: make sure your room doesn't overlook the alleyway
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  • Stayed: April 2014, traveled with friends
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1  Thank bobbyofphilly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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65 - 71 of 114 reviews

Reviewed December 7, 2013

Four of us stayed in this Tibetan style boutique hotel for three nights. I particularly chose to stay there because of the good reviews and the hotel was run by Tibetans.
It is situated at the end of a small lane way within walking distance to Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Square. but you do need to find your ways around as it was like a maze amongst many similar looking lane ways. The hotel rooms were quite spacious and comfortable but were VERY dark. We had two rooms in different floors. One room had heater but the other one's didn't work. Hot water was hard to get, having just a lukewarm shower in cold evening may not be ideal for everyone. They were only relied on Solar, but that could easily be improved by having a booster so that clients can enjoy a hot shower which is a basic requirement for hotel accommodation. The hotel is listed as 4 stars in Lhasa, I believe that is overrated.
Staff at the reception were very friendly and helpful. But not the staff in the dining room (a very small place) is situated on the top floor. Breakfast (which was included in our tour) was extremely poor in choice and expensive. For CY$58, one gets EITHER cereal OR toast (with butter, jam OR omelet, sorry no boiled egg!), tea or coffee. On can get much better value breakfast elsewhere for HALF OF THE PRICE!
I was feeling quite sick from the high altitude on the second morning, I went up to the dining room about 9:50am. I was told by the staff that breakfast finishes by 10am. I ordered the toast with jam and butter, she only gave me a piece of toast. I asked her for the jam and butter, she told me to use the leftover on the table which was left behind by my family! She also swept the floor next to me to make sure I will leave the room as soon as possible. I could not believe this is 4 stars hospitality in Lhasa. I complained this incident to the reception area later, they said they will improve their services and hospital and I hope they do!

Room Tip: we were told by our tour guide that we have the best room in the hotel, first floor at the far end.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Dreamtime18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 24, 2013

Yes, this is a very unique place but I am going to be as fair as I can while being honest to those who rely on our reviews. I am very well-travelled and normally frequent unique boutique properties so this is the type of place I would pick to stay. However, it is certainly not for everyone and I have to say the uniqueness waned as the reality set in. First, we were taken to House of Shambhala but we had two single travellers and they only had double rooms so they moved us to Shambhala Palace. I'd say they were pretty much identical and in similar areas of the old city and have the same owners. The room was a decent size but it was very cold and after several different electric space heaters one finally worked. The bathroom however never really heated up. It didn't really matter that much though because we only had hot water two of five days. Seriously - the water never even got remotely warm. They kept telling us to let it run but honestly, we ran it for over 20 minutes one day and it still never warmed up so we could not shower three different days. I am not a fussy person but I have to say I wanted to get a rag and wash down the dust on the stone bathroom walls. There is a lot of wool stuff in the room and it is dusty as well. The bed was quite hard (they are box springs with a think pad on top - no mattress. We were also in one of the rooms above the front door and yes, as another reviewer, it can be noisy at night with kids bouncing balls etc. but as it got later it did get quieter. The rooms' doors all face an outdoor courtyard so as soon as you leave your room it is very cold. The staff were wearing ski jackets and gloves all day in the lobby. Yes, they were nice and friendly but they were unable to communicate with us very well so we never got much resolved with water and other things. We always had to wait until the next day when our guide came by for us. Breakfast was light but OK for me. Pretty much tea, a plain omelette with just egg, and toast. I think they also had cereal. There are some really excellent restaurants in the old town so we never ate any other meal at the hotel. The dining room can be cold as well. There are lots of fairly narrow stairs in the hotel, not a problem for us but the dining room is on the fourth floor in case you cannot navigate stairs. So, overall, I would not recommend staying here for more than a night or two. We did pass by the Shambhala Hotel but did not go inside (it looks like a large, typical hotel). For those interested, it is in a fantastic location. It had all sorts of construction going on right in front of it. We couldn't see how you could get inside but we were told it was open. The other thing to consider with the Shambhala Palace or House of Shambhala is if you travel in the summer how hot it might get. I don't think they would have a/c if they only have little space heaters for the cold. The location is quite good at both the Palace and House of, maybe a good 5-7 minute walk to the square through the small alleys of the old town. Might be a bit intimidating if you were on your own but we managed to find our way to and from the square many times.

Room Tip: I think we were in Room 304 and as the other reviewer said who was in 204 there was street noise so...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank CanadianIslanders
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 24, 2013

Very pretty structure once you get inside. Tastefully done bedrooms and bathrooms. Great view from the roof top.
Can walk to the nearby traditional market.
Access from road is difficult and if carrying baggage, hotel will send someone to wheel it in. About 200m from the main road.
Restaurant is pretty but food arrangement is poor as the food is brought from another restaurant and not cooked there.
No bar !!

Room Tip: Top floor facing the potala palace
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Arun P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 25, 2013

We had the luck to stay at the Shambhala during our stints in Lhasa and started to call it home from home! take the rooms x01 or x02 as they are significantly bigger, let the shower run for 10 min if must be for hot water and some of the bed linnens may be a bit frindgy at the edges - but it's a great hotel. Very friendly staff, great location, tsampa for breakfast if you wish and the bath- rooms are lovely in design and detail. Beautiful make believe old-Lhasa mansion with a wonderful roof-top and great Potala views (also at night!).

Room Tip: anything with 01 or 02
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  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank tahitiiti
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 4, 2013

We were in room 204 which is directly above the hotel entrance. Construction, kids kicking balls against the walls. deliveries etc very loud until late in the evening-maybe a room on the other side of the hotel would be, quieter. Friendly staff, very willing to help. Incredibly hard beds-even by Chinese standards. It is located in the old town in the muslim quarter. Very quaint hotel but I think I would;ve preferred to stay out of town where it is a little more peaceful.

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank mtmsc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2013

I stayed at both Linstang and at Shambalah and both were in the Barkhor area so this review will compare the both in some ways.

Shambalah palace is in a great location and in the old town, so one can just walk to Jhorkhang temple and the markets. Although Lintsang is also at the old town, but Shambalah is in a more central location, it takes about 20-25min walk? We were strolling, cause of the altitude.

The staff were really friendly! And helpful so thumbs up! Love the breakfast lounge at level 4 with ample sunlight, and the breakfast was good! Simple but good.

I was there for 2 nights, the first night was a room on level 3, it was a little tiring having to climb up the stairs but maybe cause of the altitude, but they helped with the luggages! But definitely worth the climb as from our room, we could see potala palace at night so if possible, I will advise the rooms on level 3 or 4, sure u have to climb, but for the view! Wow! Room was in a cosy tibetian style, but it felt a little dark as they only had lamps, would be good if they had brigher lights, so haha my friends and I were just using the main light from the window, there is a big window so a plus for it! I nickname it my cave! haha as felt I was staying in a cave, due to the lack of light. Having said this, this does not mean there is NO light...

Toilet was moden and clean, but note if you are staying on level 3, hot water does take a while to travel up, but still its ok and I was able to have a good clean bath, which is luxury after being out on the roads out of Lhasa. The beds are quite hard, but it is alright for me, though my friend friend had difficulty sleeping on the first night.

Overall if say I were to choose between Lin tsang and here, I guess I will still opt for Lin tsang, I am a spoilt brat ;-) but then again, if Lin tsang is not available, this is my second option, if possible maybe can stay at both!

Room Tip: Get higher levels if you want a view of potala palace!
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with friends
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3  Thank Ahchu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Shambhala Palace

Address: No.16 Taibeng Gang Wengdui Xingka Sangdong Yuan, Lhasa 850004, China
Phone Number:
Location: China > Tibet > Lhasa
Amenities:
Suites
Hotel Style:
#2 Best Value Hotel in Lhasa
Price Range: $64 - $66 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 17
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Also Known As:
House Of Shambhala Hotel Lhasa
Hotel Of Shambhala
Of Shambhala Hotel
Shambhala Palace Lhasa, Tibet

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