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Belmond La Residence Phou Vao
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632 - 637 of 808 reviews
Reviewed September 22, 2008

My husband and I, along with our 2 kids (ages 5 and 9) stayed at this hotel for 10 days in August. The setting and location were excellent. The staff was friendly, and accomodating. They catered to all of our needs and responded to all of our requests. They were attentive and efficient. The rooms were more than comfortable, and the restaurant food was more than adequate. The Laos food could have been better (good), but the chef is French! and all of the other food was very good. The pool, the setting, and the views were beyond compare. You are set in a lush, green, tropical environment. The rooms were comfortable as well. This hotel was great for our family, and would also be great for couples.

  • Stayed: August 2008, traveled with family
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1  Thank SabaideefromOregon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 31, 2008

Great hotel just outside of the main area in Luang Prabang. Definitely the most luxurious option in the area. Having a pool makes such a difference at the end of a hot day.

The only downside of the hotel was that the hotel food was very overpriced and not great food for the money. You are much better eating at the amazing L'Elephant restaurant or the numerous other eatery choices.

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled with family
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2  Thank luxuriousliving
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 9, 2008

The setting and calm style of this hotel are both great. We really loved the views from our room over the pool towards the mountains and enjoyed seeing the mists lift in the morning, the sun coming up [and because we were there in the rainy season a number of specacular thunder and lightening storms]. At night the hotel staff place a myriad of small lights around the property with a flotilla of lights in the pool that create a truly magical setting for the restaurant in the evening. The staff were keen to help and very friendly and the whole atmosphere was informal and highly relaxing. It was easy to book trips and the shuttle bus was very useful as was the free internet access in the library.

Our room was very nice with a large balcony but we felt it was let down slightly by the slightly tired bathroom which had a very large and odd green bath in it. Other reviewers seem to have liked this but we did not and would have preferred a 'state of the art' modern bathroom given the high price of room [high price comparatiive to other Luang Prabang hotels as it is cheap by UK standards].

Food in the hotel restaurant was enjoyable rather than memorable and we had better and cheaper meals in Luang Prabang itself. However the setting was so remarkable and the service so friendly that we enjoyed ourselves a lot there on several evenings.

This is a great place to chill out and relax.

  • Stayed: August 2008
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3  Thank jadeb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 24, 2008

i stayed for three days, love the town, very backpacker friendly, i had a bit of a problem when i saw how many very nice guest houses and other hotels i could have stayed at for a fraction of the price.

the pool view was great ............bbut worth all that money????? not sure!.

saying that the staff are very friendly very well trainned nothing was a problem. room was clean. - some rooms have only tree trunk views. so make sure you get a room with a view or its a waste of a visit.

dinner fab by the pool, food could have been a bit more special.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled solo
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3  Thank naomisanson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 30, 2008

The previous review says it all and frankly this is one of the most serene beautiful settings for a hotel anywhere in the World - no doubt. Orient Express have created magic in the middle of Laos.
All credit also to the management and staff who are tremendous and if there is a fault it might be that at times they are too over helpful. One cannot move at the pool without someone appearing with an offer of assistance.

Unlike the Napasai - another excellent Orient Express hotel - the staff here are excellent English speakers and have clearly been trained to the highest of standards.

Our room lspacious and immaculate, overlooking the stunning infinity pool with a jungle view that made one gasp over and over again - so spectacular. With the dramatic temple high up on the hill in the distance lit up at night (at the expense of the hotel) to accentuate the beauty of the situation.

I cannot stress how wonderful our room 502 was in every aspect - who would have expected wi fi in the middle of Laos?

Just one negative - not enough quite to dock a mark off our rating - the breakfasts were superb no doubt, with an exceptional selection including luxuries such as French cheeses and smoked salmon but the evening meals in the restaurant were not of a high enough standard. The first two courses of the menu were stilted and lacked variation (seemingly jaded) and the quality of the chef was questionable - the food came with over rich unsubtle sauces and not enough texture. Compared with the Napasai and the Cipriani the meals were a big disappointment. Though they were saved to some extent by stunning desserts.

The hotel ran an excellent shuttle service by large tuk tuk or by very smart people carriers and this was a great assistance. However taxis to and from the wonderful Luang Prabang were plentiful and VERY cheap.
LP is a dream. Stunningly beautiful, charmingly peaceful yet lively. Not quite the small hamlet of old it has actually possibly improved as a destination as the shops are generally delightful with amazing textiles and fabrics if you are an enthusiast. All original, generally non touristy, lovely sales people who may be willing to bargain but not hard bargaining as in Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia. Beautiful, as yet, uncorrupted people.

There is a lot to do and see and LP has arguably the most stunning and beautiful temple in the whole of SE Asia though you have to walk to the very bottom of the main street to find it. Unesco agree with me on that and state that it is the no 1 in Asia.

The food is surprisingly good and ranges from the ubiquitous but delicious home made pizzas at very low prices through delicious Lao food to the memorable l'Elephant French restaurant where you can eat comparitively cheaply bistro food as good as any you would find in Paris or Brussels. This is the key restaurant in LP to eat be seen and meet people. Very sociable and excellent service in a wonderful understated atmosphere.

It was the end of the season and the backpacker scene was still very strong though one gets a fluent mix of middle class Audley Travel type of tourist, ex pats and serious travellers. A good clean room without air conditioning can cost as little as $2 a day - not at the Phou Vao mind you!

Split by two rivers including the Mekong this has to be one of the most characterful towns to visit with the saffron coloured robed monks, the delightful temples, the shopping, the textiles, the food and the people. Recommended as a special place!


By the way do take in the 2-day Luangsay river trip to the Thai border via Pak Beng Lodge. It costs a bit more but can be a sensational experience. Organised by Asian Oasis you can pre book but tyr to get a boat that is not overcrowded. Make it a condition of booking that there are not more than 20 on the boat.

  • Stayed: May 2008, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Lemniot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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