Economy hotels in Luang Prabang remain surprisingly shitty. ‘Old with mold’ seems to be the most popular guest amenity.
I like a clean, simple place to stay.
Guest house is overused but to me it means room only – I want to go out and find the other stuff. Most important to me is a great location from where I can fork around to find good eats.
For my needs Tha Heua Me Guest House has one huge advantage. It was recently remodelled.
That meant a comfortable, clean room with new air-conditioning, modern bathroom with proper water pressure and no 19th century mold included.
There are only nine rooms, some smaller than others, and only one facing the river. I stayed in that one for only 200,000 kip (US$25) a night, others start from only 120,000 kip during the low season.
The rooms and low rates attracted an eclectic guest mix: Thai business travellers, north Asians, overseas Lao returning home to visit relatives, and young families fleeing rundown hostels.
To find just about everything turn left facing the river and head to the T-junction of Khem Kong and Kitsalat Roads (50 meters). Here the Tha Heua Me Restaurant (different owners) serves a variety of local favorites overlooking the Mekong River.
The simple menu: Pho noodles, thick Lao rice porridge for 20, 000 kip a bowl, (US$ 2.50), sandwiches and Pa Thong Ko (Lao donuts) washed down with strong Lao coffee. There is also a same day laundry shop on the corner (7,000 kip per kilo).
The Night Market is just a few blocks away. Better yet, the Morning Market is right behind Tha Heua Me Guest House offering great local colour and unusual meals.
Tha Heua Me Guest House’s only extras are free wifi and instant coffee, cold drinks (paid) and a small shaded patio out front.
They keep it basic – cleans rooms that offer great value with a very chilled vibe.
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