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Yoe Yoe Lay - Nan Bwe Homestay
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Reviewed December 11, 2013

We booked the room beforehand and when we arrived, we were told by the manager that unfortunately the guesthouse hasn't yet received the government permission to host guests. No problem for us, they helped to book a night at another place in Mandalay, the ET Guesthouse (awful staff, but good Internet connection) and invited us for an amazing dinner! So helpful, charming, warm-hearted people!

When we returned to Mandalay a few days later, the guesthouse had received the permission from the government, so we could stay there (6th December 2013). The softest bed, brand new towels, clean showers, lovely breakfast (ask for a local breakfast option, it's very delicious) and, most importantly, great welcoming by the smiling owner and her staff.

The guesthouse is located a bit out of the city centre, in a very local and authentic neighbourhood. We met a couple of friendly cows on the dusty roads, had a walk around the block and received so many welcoming smiles. Much nicer than staying in the ugly, grey city centre. Also, the guesthouse is located quite close to a local bus station (buses to Plin Oo Lwyn, Kyaukme, Hsipaw and Lashio), the staff will help you with all bookings. Highly recommended stay!

Room Tip: The A/C room on the ground floor can get a bit noisy as the people are passing by to climb the stairs to the second floor.
  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Lidosta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 10, 2013

I had booked via email a couple of weeks before my due stay, which was for the 1st of Dec for 2 nights, exchanged a few emails with Nan Bwe and received confirmation. The day before our stay, I got our GH in Inle to call up and reconfirm the booking. All was ok. However upon arrival, we were told by the son of the lady 'running' this place, that homestays were banned in Myanmar and showed us some articles on his cell phone dating back from August... because of that, they said they could not host us but had already booked ET hotel for us. The place is not in central Mandalay, i doubt anyone speaks any english in this area. The son and the lady (I assume Nan Bwe) were very apologetic and even cooked dinner for us, then called a taxi and we went to ET hotel. They kept on saying that the government should give them the license in the next few days/next week or so.... whether this happens, I am not sure. They said they have not been hosting anyone since August. I am really not sure why they even take bookings and confirm the day before. I would rather know before and make alternative arrangements, plenty of hotels in Mandalay, and not waste time traveling up and down the city. So technically we didnt lose any money, got a free dinner, but if you are planning to stay here, make sure they have a license to host you!! If you are getting to Mandalay in the middle of the night from a night bus trip or so, I dont think it's a pleasant experience to be in this area of Mandalay and be told no rooms there for you. We didnt really feel unsafe (we were 2 girls) but the truth is that we just wanted to get out of there because the whole thing smelled fishy (no fish at dinner btw!).
We didnt see any rooms, so cant comment on that. The chinese food we had was good. We met another guy who experienced the same thing on the very same day! He was there just a few hours before us.... Dont know what they gain by cooking free dinners, maybe they get commission from the hotels they book in town, or maybe they are just extremely good hosts....
anyway, this was our experience and I thought people should know of the situation at this guesthouse right now.

Stayed: December 2013, traveled with friends
5  Thank AnnarosaTG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 26, 2013

We booked this guesthouse based on the great reviews on trip advisor. We reconfirmed when we left on our Myanmar trip three weeks before arrival. We also had organized a taxi pick up from the airport. This was done both via face book messages and reconfirmed via e-mail. The last e-mail confirmed that there will be a taxi waiting at the airport with our name and the guesthouse's name. To our surprise, no one was waiting at the airport to meet our on time flight. We took a taxi to the guesthouse. The guesthouse is located far away from any of the attractions in Mandalay. On arrival to the guesthouse, we were told that the guesthouse could not accommodate us as they have lost their licence. When asked as to why they could not have informed us prior to our arrival so we can make alternate arrangements, she claimed that she does not speak English. However, she had no difficulty taking the booking and reconfirming it and organizing a taxi pick up in English! We suspect that she did not inform us as she was hoping to regain her licence prior to our arrival.
To her credit, she did help us with phone calls to other hotels and guesthouses to find alternate accommodation. It wasted about three hours and we ended up in a very basic guesthouse that was all we could find on short notice. We also had to pay the taxi driver for all the time he waited while we tried to find another accommodation and for driving us to it.

Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
5  Thank TorontoMusicman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 8, 2013

A CouchSurfer helped me to find this place since I asked him for help to find somewhere to stay.
The place is great. I stayed in a 4 bed dorm. It was very clean and had air conditioning. The linen was changed every day.
The breakfast was amazing. It consisted of eggs(fried, poached or omelette), toasts, mango, orange juice and coffee or tea. Nan Bwe, the owner, surprised us sometimes with delicious pancakes. They also will cook a great dinner if you ask them in advance, for a very tiny amount of money.
It even has internet but do not expect to find a high speed broadband. It fails very much but you have to remember that you are in Myanmar. It happens in all around the country. Do not go to Myanmar if you expect to use the internet very often.
Above all I would like to stand out the very friendly and lovely staff that I will never forget as well as Nan Bwe’s English teacher and an amazing real state agent ^^ . Furthermore, Nan Bwe speaks a very decent English so there not will be problems of communication.
If you go to Mandalay stay in this place."

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled solo
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2  Thank Ari L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 30, 2013

I was recommended staying at Yoe Yoe lay by someone who had also been recommended it - and was not disappointed. I was honoured to have been the first canadian guest and what an experience it was staying with Nan Bwe and all of the lovely staff, friends and other travellers at the homestay. My stay in Mandalay was extremely memorable because of where I stayed and although the location is a bit out of the city centre/confusing to find at 4 in the morning - it is all worth it. Nan welcomes you to her home as family and treats you amazingly the whole time you are there. Her friend Snow even took me on a special trip to the U bein bridge on my first night on her motorcycle!

I have really never felt more taken care of in a place that was so reasonably priced, clean and comfortable. It is really great for meeting other travellers. Just don't go hoping to be antisocial/alone - it's not that kind of place. You will meet people you will never forget when you stay at Yoe Yoe Lay Homestay.

Room Tip: Check/reserve ahead if you can - Although the homestay has only been open a while - it's popularity is spreading QUICKLY by word of mouth so don't risk it being full! They are really good at getting back to you via e-mail.
  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled solo
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2  Thank Lindsay W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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