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“So glad we stayed here!”

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Riverside Retreat Hotel
Ranked #10 of 421 Yangshuo County B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Columbus, OH
Level 3 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“So glad we stayed here!”
Reviewed May 7, 2010

It’s been one year since we stayed at Riverside Retreat, but I remember it like it was yesterday. First, you can’t beat the view. After a day of exploring the area, it was so nice to just sit and relax on the patio, eat fairly decent food, and have a cold local beer. This place is across the river from town so you get peace and quiet, and privacy, and the common patio and the 2nd floor rooms offer a great view of the karst scenery. You’ll notice that Kate’s name keeps being mentioned. That’s because she is the real deal. What a great hostess, and one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet! We would stay there again in a heartbeat!

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Patch19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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92 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Hampton, VA
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed February 15, 2010

We stayed in the larger room, and except for awful German travelers, the spot was an absolute delight. Take the time to speak with Kate - an intelligent, wonderful, and thoughtful guide with great insights into life in the region. Wonderful time, thanks to Kate! By the way, people in town all seem to know River Shelly. Ask Kate to help arrange a cooking class in town - fantastic!

  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank amprof
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
104 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed November 27, 2009

Away from the tour hordes and masses, it's quiet until local overnighters from Guilin or thereabouts come in and treat this place like a frat house.The owner Shelly couldn't care less about the discourteousness of others and simply says it's because they are Chinese. Kinda lame excuse for boorishness.
Shelly was a guide, but knows little of western standards.
The 'resort' has a pool fillled with murky water great for mossies, much of the construction and amenities are lower grade Chinese constructs.
BUT, and this is a big BUT, Kate the manager does all, and does it well. She'll get a cut of anything you do, but she's very helpful and knows everything. Regrettably, no one else speaks English very well if at all.
Food is average for western grub,local fare is better if you ask her to lay off the ladles of oil.
It's 20RMB by taxi to town, or a 5RMB local flag it down bus. Sometimes getting a taxi at night is a pain, they hate to come this far and will gouge you. Bike if you can, drive even better if you have wheels.
This sounds like a gripe review, but 9 of our 52 days in China were here. And Yangshuo was easily the most relaxing.
Come, bargain for best rate, don't expect western hotel or resort, but the view is heavenly and you will chill.
Oh yea, internet/wifi are very spotty.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mt N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brooklyn, NY
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed October 8, 2009

This hotel was one of the highlights of our three weeks in China. Absolutely beautiful setting, GORGEOUS views, very clean rooms and excellent food. Kate is a wonderful host! She will book any activity for you, arrange transportation, she even got our laundry done for us! The HIGHLIGHT of Yangshuo is the bike ride through the countryside. Kate personally brings you or arranges it. Beautiful karst mountains and rice paddies... the China you came to see.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank spf_girl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai, China
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed June 7, 2009

We stayed at Riverside Retreat, based on suggestions on this site and were not at all disappointed. The place is on the oppsite side of the li river, away from the tourist crowd on West street. The rooms are sparse yet have great views. What you should ask for are: upstairs rooms with balconies. The toiletries are extremely basic and this was a big grouse. Bring your own starting from bodywash, to shampoos. The shwoer had no stall and this might be uncomfortable as the bathrooms gets all wet but rooms are wiped and cleaned everydat. The food at the restaurant is great and we ended up eating teher many times. The second grouse is that even though you may enjoy the location, getting to anywhere is a 15 minute walk and a ferry ride to the other side. We had no complaints on this but if you have kids, avoid!

All in all, we had 5 more friends stay there after we left and they love it as well.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank YPVenkatesh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed May 4, 2009

Pros:
- Wonderful staff. Kate is an excellent manager who made every effort to give us a relaxing weekend and arrange plans smoothly.
- Beautiful views. Can any hotel compare?
- Good food that compares with every other place in town.
- Only a 20min walk and ferry ride to West Street.
- Quiet. There are no noisy trucks going past the hotel. The community around the hotel is quiet. There are some nice small orchards nearby.

Cons:
- As mentioned in other reviews, avoid rooms on the first floor. They are loud (doors close loudly) and the bathroom piping is poorly done, creating a bad smell.
- WIFI connection was weak.
- If you don't want to walk 20 min to West Street, then don't stay here.

Despite the cons, I would much prefer to stay in the first floor rooms during the national holiday than fighting with the loud crowds around the rest of town.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank expdabest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai, China
Level 6 Contributor
92 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
Reviewed April 29, 2009

The Riverside Retreat is a nice place to stay, with a spectacular view of the karst landscape. It is in a “village” across the river, away from the hustle and the bustle of West Street in town.

From town, one can take a local mini bus (yellow mini vans and open air seaters, there are two kinds, but both yellow) for 1 RMB per person, get off near the Green Lotus Hotel where there is a ferry landing behind it and take the local ferry across the river (another 1 RMB per person). After that it is a 20 minute walk along some farms and fields, going slightly uphill. It seems a little complicated, but you are rewarded with a stunning view from a quiet and peaceful location. Or you can get a cab for 20 RMB from the bus station to take you to the hotel. Riverside Retreat in Chinese is called 'dong ling bie shu'.

We only saw Shelly twice, she is the owner of the place, but has another one in town and is teaching English. Who really impressed us most was Kate, a young Chinese girl who basically runs the place in a friendly and courteous manner. Kate is receptionist, bar tender, concierge, tour desk and waitress all rolled into one. The rest of the staff are mediocre, however, and all deserve to be replaced.

The rooms are good value for money, and the place is kept very clean by local standards. The wireless Internet is only useful if your room is on the ground floor (and possibly one floor up, we didn’t test that). Higher up the signal is too weak, which is why we asked to move downstairs, which Kate swiftly organized.

The Riverside Retreat has a pool, which is badly neglected. I am sure that many travelers would make good use of it, if only it looked half way clean, but unfortunately that was not the case and as a result it is a wasted asset.

The menu is not very exciting and contains both Chinese as well as Western dishes. The quality of the food is acceptable to good, depending on what you order. The breakfast sets are good and not overpriced even when compared with the places in town. We mainly had lunch and dinner in town.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank AnnPerth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Riverside Retreat Hotel

Property: Riverside Retreat Hotel
Address: No.10-3 Ao Tou Zha Village, Yangshuo County, China
Location: China > Guangxi > Yangshuo County
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 421 B&Bs / Inns in Yangshuo County
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Riverside Retreat Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in Yangshuo, Riverside Retreat offers you beautiful scenery with western-style amenities. All rooms offer private western-style bathrooms, A/C and modern furniture. Just a short bike ride from West Street, this quiet countryside location gives you the best of both worlds. Relax by the pool or take a cooking class. the family atmosphere will leave you with lasting memories. ... more   less 
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