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“Excellent 3 night stay- great experience!”

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Thongbay Guesthouse
Ranked #1 of 260 Luang Prabang B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Excellent 3 night stay- great experience!”
Reviewed February 11, 2014

My brother and I stayed at Thongbay for 3 nights and really enjoyed our stay. For starters, upon our arrival we were greeted at the airport by the owner and his son. They drove us to the guesthouse where we were welcomed by locals and employees of who we're celebrating a family gathering. They generously provided beers before we put our bags down! The food was amazing: 4 hearty breakfast options. The bread was warm, the noodle soup was yummy and the eggs were delicious. Could not disagree further with those who wrote negative comments about the food.

In terms of the rooms- it's a beautiful, clean guesthouse on the water in Laos. This is not supposed to the Ritz in Hollywood, but it is a very plush guesthouse with exceptional staff. The shuttle services that are provided in and out of town were reliable and very easy. Overall, we really enjoyed our stay and would recommend to other travelers who are looking for an authentic experience that's clean and filled with friendly staff.

  • Stayed February 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 20141985dln
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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959 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (221)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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English first
Hanoi, Vietnam
Level Contributor
72 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed February 9, 2014

This was one of my favourite hotels in South-east Asia. It does what it says on the Internet site. It is away from the centre but you can get there easily by shuttle bus or Tuk-tuk. Not sure why some people complain about Tuk-tuks, if you tell them your price they will honour it (that is just part of life in these countries). The staff at the hotel make you very welcome and are extremely friendly. The location is wonderful as you are facing the river and it is lovely wit the mist every morning. The gardens are also extremely beautiful. Breakfast is delivered to you balcony and is delicious and there is a great choice so everyone should be pretty happy. The attention to detail is very good here compared to any other hotel I have stayed in in this part of the world. The rooms have very comfortable beds in fact I had the best nights sleep there! I will certainly be going there again!

Room Tip: It is really nice if you get a bungalow with view on the river
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sarah W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cairns, Australia
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed February 9, 2014

We just spent 6 nights at Thong Bay Guesthouse and it was excellent. You will not find more friendly or helpful people in Luang Prabang. The hospitality is fabulous and genuine, on arrival it was the birthday celebration and we were invited to join with free flowing Beer Lao and lots of fresh Laos food for free!!!

The river view rooms offer fantastic views for observing life on the river and the farmers tending the gardens on opposite bank. The gardens are a beautiful location to chill out and have meals. The food is exceptionally good value for money, great green chicken curry and Larb Moo.

The breakfasts are HUGE with plenty of choices. Yes you write up your choice the night before so you can vary each day if you wish.

The location is a short walk to town which is a good idea considering all the food you eat in this city. It is mandatory exercise which one needs to stop getting fat. The guest house has complimentary shuttle at peak time morning and night. Otherwise tuk tuks vary from 40-50,000 kip depending where they pick you up in town.

There were no insects whatsoever so very comfortable.

I would stay there next time no problem.

Room Tip: Go River Rooms as they have bigger verandas for lounging.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
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    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank pedro o
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sao Paulo, SP
Level Contributor
449 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 165 helpful votes
Reviewed February 9, 2014

Amazing Experience! Friendly and helpful staff, nice breakfast, good bangalow with a river view. Quiet surrounds. Is a little bit far from the city centre, but theres free transfers avaliable all day until 9h30pm and free bikes! If a original experience is what you`re looking for, stay there. No mistakes. If you`re are like the italian girl, that make a review recently, and are more concerned with a huge continental breakfast and a very high speed wi-fi, save a few bucks and go to New York and don`t bother real travellers.

Room Tip: Always choose a room with the river view, it`s very nice.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Iuri K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denmark
Level Contributor
13 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed February 3, 2014

I stayed at Thongbay Guesthouse for twelve days in january and was placed in a river view bungalow. The internet was working fine from the bungalow and the view was great. During my stay I was invited to join the family to the alms-giving in the morning and they even invited me to join a ceremoni in the garden with buffet and later a trip to watch and do Lao dancing. Everything for free. Phillipe and Lay, the managers, are the nicest of people, and everyday the staff asked me about my day. When I had a day with bad stomach, they gave me rice-soup and electrolytes to recover and followed up for many days, asking if I was well.
The place is a little out of town, but you can reach it by walking for 15 minutes or use one of the many free bicycles (5 minutes by bike). The restaurant is good, and they will serve you the food on the terasse. The breaakfast is good. Bread, Youghurt, the/coffee, friut, juice and a choice between (1) egg, sausage and ham and (2) noodlesoup (3) muesli (4) two eeggs. The only downside, was that the marmelade was a typical asian one, tasting of artificial fruit and sugar. they serve you the breakfast on your terasse/balcony. just tell the the time the day before.
The settings in a really beautifull garden with a little pond and lots of exotic flowers is relaxing and romantic.
All in all I will really recommmend this nice place. The owners I consider as friends after spending just twelve days there.

Room Tip: use their free bikes to get around town
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank hephey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary
Level Contributor
20 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed February 2, 2014

We stayed at Thongbay Guest House from January 8 - 13, 2014 on the recommendation of both my son and daughter who had stayed there on different visits to Luang Prabang. I had tried to book directly through Thongbay but they were already full for the dates we needed so I went to Agoda rooms and was able to book a room there. I let Thongbay know that I was able to get a Garden Room thorough Agoda rooms and if a River Front Room became available that I would be interested and willing to pay the difference in the rate. I got an immediate notification from Thongbay letting me know that they were able to change my room to a River view room at no charge. I was very pleased at the accommodation of our request and the quick and friendly service.
We arrived at Thongbay with no problem and check-in was fast and efficient. We were three people in our party and our room had two Queen size beds. The nights are a bit cool in Luang Prabang and our beds had very cozy blankets to keep us warm at night. The highlight of our room was the view. While the walk through the gardens to our room were also very beautiful and peaceful the real joy was our lovely balcony facing the Nam Kam River. We would sit on the balcony and watch life on the River go by. It was so beautiful and peaceful.
Thongbay is a bit farther from the town centre than other guest houses but don't let that deter you from booking. They have a van service on the hour to take you to town and back and if you miss the van it is easy enough to get a tuk tuk. The front desk was helpful in getting us where we needed to go whether it was booking a tour or just heading into town.
Breakfast at Thongbay is a bit of a Marathon. The night before you write your breakfast choice on the white board along with the time and location you want to eat (eat on your terrace/balcony or eat in the gardens). The breakfasts were huge and nearer the end of our stay we got wiser and would choose just portions of a meal, indicating Fruit, Yogurt and toast only rather that the entire meal. There were four choices to pick from; #1 Pancakes (Banana, Pineapple, Mango or Apple) which comes with Yogurt, Juice, Toast, Coffee or Tea; #2 Noodle Soup, with Fresh Fruits, Yogurt, Toast, Coffee or Tea; #3 Eggs, Sausage, Cheese, Ham, Bacon, Fruits, Juice, Toast, Coffee or Tea; # 4 Eggs (Scrambled, Fried, or an Omelette), Fresh fruits, Juice, Yogurt, Toast, Coffee or Tea. Having this huge breakfast you were definitely set for the day.
We also had dinner at Thongbay one night and it offered good choices and was very tasty.
We had two small issues during our stay. We had a bit of an ant issue in the shower of our room. When we turned on the shower, a small army of ants came marching out from behind the Shower box. We let the front desk know and they immediately came and fixed the problem and we were not bothered again. Again fast and efficient service. The other minor issue can be looked at in two ways, as a annoyance or as just part of the experience. Farther down the river there is a new bar that has opened up and they play Karaoke until late into the night. I know the folks at Thongbay are not pleased with this new bar and the music and they have had some guests complaints but really for me it was part of the experience. I think that no matter where you are in Luang Prabang you might hear some Karaoke or the early morning gong indicating it is time for the monks to rise but to me it is all a bit of the charm.
When it was time to leave the entire family and staff gathered around to thank us for staying at Thongbay and send us on our way - again great and attentive service.
Would I stay at Thongbay again, yes in a heart beat. The surroundings are beautiful, peaceful, and after a day of site seeing it was a relaxing place to come back to where you will be taken good care of!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank CalgaryTuffy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed February 1, 2014 via mobile

I traveled solo here and really wished I was closer to town. The shuttle service is a bit limited and it was just a hassle to have to tuk tuk back and forth. I also spent extra for a riverside bungalow and while it was lovely and clean I couldn't get hot water so my showers were quick and chilly. Also, there is a Lao karaoke restaurant down the river and it projects the singing on loud speakers until 11:30pm every night. It sounded like cats fighting and made it hard to sleep. Then, at 3:30 an alarm is blasted over speakers for the nearby Wats and I'll tell you - it sounds right out of a horror movie. Freaked me out and woke me up every night. The staff was nice but couldn't help me book any outings, and only told me I had to go to town if I wanted to book anything.

Perhaps I would have a different perspective if I was with a partner. In any case, if you're traveling solo I'd recommend staying closer to town.

Stayed February 2014, traveled solo
Helpful?
5 Thank greenhootenanny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Thongbay Guesthouse

Property: Thongbay Guesthouse
Address: Ban Vieng May, Vat Sakem, Luang Prabang 0600, Laos
Location: Laos > Luang Prabang Province > Luang Prabang
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 260 B&Bs / Inns in Luang Prabang
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Thongbay Guesthouse 2.5*
Number of rooms: 16
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Also Known As:
Thongbay Guesthouse Hotel Luang Prabang

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