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“Excellent”

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Golden Island Cottages - Nampan
Ranked #5 of 14 Hotels in Taunggyi
Certificate of Excellence
København, Danmark
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Excellent”
Reviewed February 12, 2014 via mobile

Excellent hotel in the middle of Inle Lake. The best service and a fantastic view of the lake. I can highly recommend this hotel. They serve a drink named Havana - try it, it is fantastic. They also have a good restaurant and are eager to serve you.

  • Stayed January 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Cocokatten
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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282 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (60)
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Blenheim, New Zealand
Level 5 Contributor
53 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed January 28, 2014

This review is based on the superior room they tried to put us in.

After we were gonged in for the first of many, many times we were taken to the last room on the busy waterway side. As the padlocked front door was opened a tiny, dark space was revealed. This was obviously one of the original rooms and had not received any renovations. There was no place to put luggage and no interior seating. There was a deck where we could sit and listen to the continuous throb of one-lung diesel powered long-tailed boats. Light was provided by a single yellow fluorescent bulb that had seen better days. The bathroom was old and appeared filthy because of the tile floor.

We moved to a huge, brand new, deluxe room on the other side and away from the boat noise.

The move placed us closer to the gonging which started early in the morning and continued some nights until 8:00 pm.. There was never a moment of piece. If the sound from the village (starting at 2:00am) of a loud reading from the Doctrine of Buddha wasn't going on, boats were roaring by, or someone was being gonged in.

The gonging could be prevented. The other noise is just daily life.

I watched as people arrived with their hands over their ears.

The staff doesn't get it. It was sort of cool the first time, but got old really fast.

The staff is warm and friendly.

The food was marginal and the butter tasted rancid.

It would have been nice to sit on the deck and have a drink, but the gonging interrupted any peace.

Room Tip: Upgrade to a deluxe room for $10.00 per night. Do not accept one of the very old rooms, at least ge...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Steve C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aylesbury, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
37 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed January 21, 2014

The welcome when you arrive is delightful and the little bamboo houses on stilts are very attractive. However, bamboo does not keep out the cold or the noise of outboard motors at 4.30 in the morning when it feels as though the lake's fleet of shallow long boats are coming through the room. The sunrise and sunsets are a photographer's dream. Delicious food and it's a good location for exploring the wonders of Inle Lake. We had two nights here but needed somewhere next in the itinerary to catch up on sleep!

Room Tip: All the rooms have a good view but choose the newer huts
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Rowena D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed January 17, 2014

Very romantic little wooden houses on stilts over the lake. Some are a little rough around the edges, but that adds to the charm. Great dining room complete with a talent show by the staff. Delicious breakfast buffet.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank PapaDil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
KL
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed January 11, 2014

This review relates to GIC 1 at Nampan, which is farther south on the lake. This is an impressive facility and our family had a wonderful four days, three nights in December 2013. The location makes for some magical sunsets and sunrises. The cottages, built on top of the lake are truly beautiful, and is run and managed by the Pa'O people, I believe. The office in Nyaung Shwe was very helpful in explaining the costs (one way boat trip costs 10,000 or $10US, full day boat trip varies between 20,000 and 25,000 depending on destination), as well as confirming our flight departure time (it was delayed, giving us a bit more time for a leisurely lunch rather than waiting at the Heho airport, as we would not have done), as well as organizing transportation to the airport.

The welcome as you arrive is truly magical - with the traditional Pa'O drums and cymbals welcoming each boat.

Staying on the lake meant that we had a lot more time to visit places, especially those in the far southern section of the lake. We were able to get away from the throng of tourists, and be the only ones walking through villages, getting personalized pottery lessons, and having many memorable and wonderful experiences.

The breakfasts were good, included in the cost and relatively simple buffet breakfasts. The noodle soups and the egg station, as well as fresh fruit were helpful. The evening meal at the restaurant sometimes included a cultural show at 8 pm - which was wonderful. The food, strangely, was mostly Chinese food, which was mediocre. But we were informed we could order traditional food, as long as our order was in early. We found this food to be incredibly delicious, and ordering a la carte made it cheaper or the same as what we could order from the Chinese menu. (They have set meals which are more expensive, but that would be too much and was not necessary for our family.) For $3 - $5, we got some delicious entrees of the local cuisine, which were much better than what was ordered off the Chinese menu.

The boatman, also arranged through GIC, stayed with us for the entire time, and, of course was incredibly gracious and wonderful. He was willing to take us where we wanted to go.

In December, we had few mosquitoes (nets were provided and were wonderful) and plenty of extra blankets, as the evenings were very comfortable, but the late nights and early mornings were quite chilly. There was hot water for showers - though the temperature did vary a bit, as you could get a stream of cold water you would have to wait out before the hot water started again.

Evenings and early mornings had some noise from nearby Nampan (music carrying across the lake? early morning meditation chants? boats after sunrise?), though earplugs were provided (probably better used for the loud engines from the boats. The noise from the lake didn't bother us, though.

From everything we found, GIC 1 (Nampan) was excellent, and very possibly better than the second one which is farther north.

We will always cherish the memories from Inle Lake - it's a place like few others in the world. The relaxation on the decks overlooking the lake were some of our favorite memories from travels across many countries and continents.

Room Tip: We were in 109 and 110 - which were at the far end on the corner - great views across the lake. All...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Doug W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canberra, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed December 30, 2013

This review refers to the Nampan resort, which is the the more southerly of the two resorts on Lake Inle operated by GIC. The resort is billed as an upmarket resort and listed as a Top Choice by Lonely Planet. We write this as a couple who have spent 3 weeks travelling in Burma and have stayed in a number of similarly priced (and comfortable) hotels in Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan and Kalaw, which we take as a benchmark.

We were booked in to a standard room at the Nampan resort for 4 nights in mid-December by our travel agent at a cost of over US$100 per night. Regrettably we found the accommodation to be so unpleasant and substandard that we chose to move out after the first night to alternative, cheaper accommodation in Nyaungshwe which we paid for out of our own pocket, forfeiting the remaining 3 nights accommodation we had paid for at Nampan. The easiest way to point out the deficiencies is to give an itemised list:

1. Access to the resort is by a cold, exposed and tedious 50 minute ride from Nyaungshwe in a small boat with an extremely loud 2-stroke motor. The only lifejackets provided were several sizes too big and would have been useless had there been a collision with another boat. As someone who can't swim I found this a genuinely unpleasant experience. Once at the resort there is no way of leaving to go anywhere without going through this experience.

2. The room was small, cold, depressing, dingy and dimly lit. We arrived after dark, and there was barely enough light in the room to see to unpack our bags. It was too dark to read a book, and there was little to do in the room except stay under the blankets to keep warm. Even during the day it was dark in the room, and one could see light coming in through cracks in the walls and floor.

3. The only furniture provided in the room apart from the bed was two rudimentary low cupboards and a very low table on one side of the bed. There were no chairs of any sort in the room. The only seats were two cane deck chairs on the verandah which were too big to be brought into the room, and of course no use on the cold night we were there. The sheets were poly-cotton.

4. By comparison, the bathroom was excessively brightly lit by a fluorescent tube which reflected off the cracked white tiles to give it all the ambience of an interrogation chamber. The bathroom sink had a loose hot tap which needed two hands to operate - not such a problem in itself except it got too hot to touch. There was no plug in the sink (necessary when there are separate hot and cold taps with extreme temperatures). We asked for one and were given one that didn't fit. Asking a second time we got a plastic bowl. We had to perch it precariously on the sink to fill it, place it on the floor, and kneel down to use it. The tiles in the shower were dirty and cracked, there was no toilet roll holder, the toilet paper provided was basically crepe paper which shreds longitudinally when you try to tear a piece off, and the shower rail consisted of pieces of flexible plastic tubing amatuerishly attached end to end with short lengths of aluminium tubing.

5. The electricity went off three times during the evening. A rechargeable battery lamp was provided. Luckily we didn't need to recharge it as the cord was too short to reach from the low table to the only power point we could locate higher up on the wall. The electricity went off at 9am the following morning and stayed off until we left mid-afternoon. It is possible it was turned off deliberately.

6. Running along the western edge of the resort is a channel used by the local boat traffic. The noise of the boats starts at 3am and goes continuously throughout the day until after dark. These boats have very noisy two-stroke motors: it was like camping next to a helipad. Not recommended if your intention is to have a quiet relaxing holiday, or if you intend to sleep through the night.

7. The only facilities external to our room were a dining room and a cold, exposed external lounge area in front of the reception area. The food available in the only restaurant accessible without an onerous boat ride was dull and almost twice the price of equivalent food in other restaurants throughout Burma. The coffee shop advertised as one of the facilities is the bar in the corner of the restaurant and the shop is a glass-fronted cabinet containing a few souvenirs.

In summary, we should state that we do not expect western-style accommodation when travelling in a country which has suffered as many difficulties as Burma, and in general we have been pleasantly surprised by the very comfortable accommodation at other hotels throughout the country. GIC at Nampan, however, was a severe disappointment. The resort was clearly poorly built and has not been properly maintained, and is of a standard we would expect from a cheap budget backpackers. A resort that is effectively an island needs much better facilities to ensure a pleasant stay.

Room Tip: Find another place to stay
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank CB_and_LN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Worcester, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
176 reviews
70 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed December 28, 2013

Room 111. Very nice individual bamboo cottages. The wood does not keep out the cold, but they provide several extra heavy blankets. Others in my group had hot water bottles, but my room did not. Bathroom had toiletries (shampoo, lotion, toothbrush), hot water worked fine, but others in group had problems. There was a problem with ants in the bathroom, but not too many. Room was huge size and had a fridge with freezer compartment, and a safe. No TV, Breakfast was buffer with choice of Asian (rice, noodles and veggies) or Western (pancakes and chips), and egg station. However, very limited selection, don’t expect a lot of choices. There is noise at night with boats, so bring ear plugs. They did have 2 PCs near reception with supposed free internet connection, but the keyboard was Burmese and I never managed to connect.
The staff greets the incoming boats at the dock with music and singing - very cute.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank bradziker1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Golden Island Cottages - Nampan

Property: Golden Island Cottages - Nampan
Address: No. 65 Circular Road, Hawgone Qr | Inle Lake, Taunggyi, Myanmar
Location: Myanmar > Shan State > Taunggyi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Taunggyi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Golden Island Cottages - Nampan 3*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Golden Island Cottages, a floating hotel, is built on stilts in the middle of dreamy Inle lake. All the bungalows have scenic lake views. They are built of local bamboo and comfortably furnished to blend with the traditional atmosphere of the region. GIC offers a fine dining room and delightful entertainment, as well as easy access by small power boats to ancient archaeological sites, a variety of shops and colorful markets overflowing with handmade local products. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Golden Island Cottages Hotel Taunggyi
Golden Island Hotel
Golden Island Resort
Golden Island Cottages - Nampan Myanmar/Taunggyi

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