We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“A Lovely Evening”
Review of Sonphao

Sonphao
Ranked #49 of 212 Restaurants in Luang Prabang
Price range: $3 - $15
Cuisines: Asian, Japanese
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations
Description: Sonphao restaurant in front of Choumkhong temple specializes in Laotian and Japanese food. They also offer daily cultural dinner show.(Admission Fee : 40,000k)
Reviewed November 14, 2013

While biking around the old city, we stumbled on The Sonphao Restaurant. They advertised traditional Laos Dance, which we wanted to see. We had the Laos Sampler; 90,000 kip ($11.50) for six samples. Delicious. Dishes were presented well with varied and sophisticated flavors (no hit-you-over-the-head fiery spice). The chef interprets traditional Laos food with finesse and skill. Traditional Japanese food is also available. I think there are a few western choices?? PLEASE treat yourself to traditional Laos Dance in the upstairs room! Four dances were performed by three women wearing traditional ethnic clothing; they were accompanied by three musicians playing traditional Laos instruments. I especially enjoyed the dancers’ graceful and expressive hands - don’t forget to watch their feet. At the end of the performances, the three dancers remained on stage for a photo op. The performance is an extra 25,000 kip pp ($3.25) – worth it. Recommend you get there about 45 minutes before the dances begins, especially if you want to concentrate on the dance or take photos.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank SiteSeeker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review
Reviews (126)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
  • More languages

53 - 57 of 126 reviews

Reviewed May 23, 2013

We found an ad for a "Lao Traditional Dinner Show" on the tourist map and made a booking. restaurant is hidden away from the main tourist streets but is an easy walk and is listed in the map.
We found two more diners but they weren't going to watch the show and were a little disappointed and awkward that we were the only people who watched the show upstairs.

Three lovely Lao girls performed four dances and they were exquisite. There was a live band playing beautiful music using traditional instruments and it was such a pity that there were no people to enjoy it.

I had a very nice Mango shake and my husband a Lao whiskey cocktail. We had a small set menu which allows you to select 3 options of the full set menu. We ordered smart by ordering a set each and got to sample all 6 options and the food was really lovely with a great selection of Lao food - a soup, fried spring rolls, chicken steamed in banana leaf (a bit like fish amok), a stir fry of mushroom and noodle. Lao bean and mushroom stir fry, a pork based salad served with a wonderful sticky rice in a woven container followed by a slice of crème caramel and tea or coffee.

The show cost us 50000 kip for two and the small set cost another 50000 kip per person. The drinks cost from 14 k - 26 k Kip (about 7600 kip = 1 US$). It wasn't the cheapest meal we had in Luang Prabang but possibly one of the best. There is an added tip to the dancers as they come and stick a Champa flower behind your ear carrying a vase of flowers to which a dollar note is stuck but their performance is well worth the tip.

This was a lovely end to our few days in Lao and I wished more tourists would have been there.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
2  Thank AKBNZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 25, 2013

the food is good at Sonphao, but we really enjoyed the music and dance show. Be forewarned, there is a charge for the music but someone has to pay the piper right?

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank mike m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 8, 2013

We were really looking forward to eating at this restaurant and we were told it was 'Japanese-Lao' fusion food. Well let his was misleading! You can get Japanese food or you can get Lao food, not a fusion of both. Disappointment #1.

Disappointment #2: the food was really just average. It certainly wasn't bad or terrible but it wasn't memorable either. Such a shame cos we had some amazing food in Luang Prabang for only a fraction of this place.

Disappointment #3: the show/ performance was an exploitation of child workers. And I felt uncomfortable having to be part of this unnecessary trade in child labour. The musicians were no older than 12, the youngest was perhaps only 5-6 years old. The dancers were just teen girls.... I really didn't want to be party to parading around children like show ponies. It was very blech.

On the upside, it is a quaint and quiet restaurant, a little bit away from all the main touristy part of town but seems geared to catering to Japanese bus tour groups. If that's your thing, then you will enjoy this place. Otherwise, you're not missing much if you give it a miss.

Thank maehem
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 21, 2012

A little bit off from major tourist walks this gem offers a great food experience. Located in a typical family house you will be served amazing dishes. We had buffallo meat rolls, a strong recommendation. It's a mixture of German roastbeef and sushi. They also catched us with steamed fish in banana leaves and vegetable spring rolls. Prices are absolutely fair and balanced. So support these very friendly guys. You'll not regret it!

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank NvsMunich
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Sonphao also viewed

Luang Prabang, Luang Prabang Province
Luang Prabang, Luang Prabang Province
 
Luang Prabang, Luang Prabang Province
Luang Prabang, Luang Prabang Province
 

Been to Sonphao? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing