Chiang Saen hotel to avoid

Discussion in 'Northern Thailand - Road Trip Reports' started by penetrator, Dec 24, 2008.

  1. penetrator

    penetrator Ol'Timer

    Was recently doing a tour of the far north, although I did it using a Honda it was a Honda Jazz so wont bore you all with a 4 wheeled trip report. Anyway I got to Chiang Saen and after looking at 1 guest house that seemed rather depressing I got my girl to call the River Hill Hotel and it seemed to tick all the boxes, but at a quoted bt1000 a night it was in the upper class of accommodation for up there I guess. We followed their directions and found it easily enough, nice looking place from the outside and impressive foyer. Get taken up to see a couple of rooms by the girl on the front desk and I'm happy with them and more importantly my girl is so I say taken. Go back down and I bring in the bags while my girl fills out the check in card in her name. I come back in and my girl turns to me and says the room will be bt1200, rather confused I ask her why we was quoted bt1000 on the phone and she asks the girl who says it's now bt1200 because I'm a Farang. With that I say no more, turn on my heel and walk straight out.

    I know full well this stuff goes on all the time but for a large seemingly professional establishment to do it blatantly to your face is a bit much. As I said to my girl at the time they would be arrested if they did such a thing in the UK, where of course it would be classed as racism.

    Anyway ended up staying at the Chiang Saen Goldenland Resort, they kept to their phone quoted bt800 regardless of my ethnicity and it was a nice place with very friendly staff. Only problem was everyone seemed to get up very early and I was woken up by the tv on full volume next door at 6am.
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  3. Marco

    Marco Ol'Timer


    Welcome to thailand,, that happens so often to us in the past a well,, so what we do now is if call on the phone my wife get quote first in thai and then she after getting the price that price is same even has farang huspand and permanent recident,,,in this way we have managed to get price what they been telling to my wiffe in the begining and not knowing about my skin colour.

    btw when we where up there abt 3weeks ago, and stayed in Chiang Khong,, got nice room from directly from river 350thb no ABF
    dont remeber name of it, but here is coordinates, for your next trip.
  4. rdg_john

    rdg_john Active Member

    Two downsides to living here, unfortunately.

    You did the right thing by declining their hospitality.

    I hope you also politely requested the guest in the neighbouring room to turn the TV down a bit.
  5. penetrator

    penetrator Ol'Timer

    Problem was I got into town about 6pm and just wanted to find a place quickly as possible then head out for something to eat and then a few beers. If I'd of had more time I'd of looked around a bit more but in the circumstances didn't mind paying a bit more for a wee bit of comparative luxury.

    Here's the Chiang Saen Goldenland Resort:




    Like I say it was bt800 inc bf, had a/c as well but that didn't even get turned on as it was bloody freezing there. Didn't complain about the neighbours having their tv on so loud at 6am as it actually did me a favour as it got me up and I had a lot to fit into that day, a boat trip on the Mekhong, quick stop off in Laos and then a 9 hour drive back down south to Lopburi.

    If anyone happens to be in Chiang Saen and wants a bevy this place on the road beside the Mekhong was ok:


    Being the only Farang there and being English whilst Manchester United and Manchester City were playing live on the tv I was the centre of attention for my football views:


    I even learnt a new Thai phrase whilst there - Pop Chaly:


    Btw, I noticed this place in between Chiang Saen and Sop Ruak, anyone know what it is ? I thought maybe a telescope place but then thought maybe some kind of cold war listening station.


  6. Marco

    Marco Ol'Timer

    David will know what it is, but i think it's something to do for weather observatory(Spying Lao)

    back to riding,, yet that is one thing when arriving late and need to get accomodation, we tryed always arrive on destination around 4rish,,so just incase there is set back,, there is time to find new place as it happens to us in Mae Sariang,,i think it was river side hotel where our "Leader" stayed year before and it was 650 per night,, now when we arrived there they asked 1000, and we heading to next choice 750 i think it was..we use to stay around 500THB rooms. Nice and cosy most of them and anyhow after long day of riding only what one needs is shower and bed.

    I have 5am wake up call from my neigbours in that hotel,,but i dont mind it as i wake usually at6am anyhow...
  7. ianyonok

    ianyonok Ol'Timer

    Just want to say Welcome all GT-Riders to Viang Yonok Hotel. Vassana and I run our little hotel by Chiang Saen Lake, 4klms from Chiang Saen town. I love classic bikes myself, Triumphs in particular, run a '59 Thunderbird and a '71 Tiger.

    Rob and the North Siam Roadrunners coming to stay for a couple of nights next month.

    Discounts for bikers and I have a pretty good workshop if you have need on your road trip.

    Hope David can get us on his map on the next printing.

    Check us out at; ... _Saen.html

    Hope to see you soon.

    PS. Never did find out what that giant golf ball is for.
  8. David Learmonth

    David Learmonth Ol'Timer

    First met Ian in November 2004. However,Wednesday evening is the first time I have been to his resort. My wife & I were invited there for dinner by a UK couple we are friendly with - they were supposed to be staying for just one week, but liked it so much they booked for two more weeks & shortened their time in CNX. The food was really excellent. Service first class. Ian's wife speaks excellent English. I only live fifteen kms away so wont need to stay there (sadly!) Bungalows are nicely done, its a nice, relaxing spot & the views are beautiful. Ian showed me his workshop & I was really impressed (and jealous). Wish Ian the best of luck & am looking forward to my next meal there!
  9. jethro69

    jethro69 Ol'Timer

    The same happened to me at the river hill resort once, although it was 1100THB I had to pay from the 1000THB quoted on the phone. Sometimes you can book it through Agoda for around 900THB, as this is prepaid, I wonder what trick they'll try to apply their racist policy:thumbdown:
    Anyhow top notch is now the Siam Triangle for around 2300THB. I just wonder how long it will last, as it was a ruin for at least 4 years before the restarted to build it.
    I'll stay usually at the other side of town for a very favorable rate. It's called Honey Hotel and the have either fan or air con rooms for 400/500THB. The rooms are actually the same, just if you opt for fan room, you get not the remote to operate the aircon. They have free WiFi too.It's just before Gin's Guest-house. There are a few Karaoke's in walking distance, the nearest with a live band.

    The name in Thai
    view from outside

    As for the giant golfball, I guess that there is/was a radar inside to control airspace. Nobody of the Thais I asked could confirm, but it seems it was an airbase (helicopters, there is no runway) before. I passed there yesterday it had a bit of light, so probably there is still a guard around.
  10. el jefe

    el jefe Member

    I just got back from a trip through northern Thailand and Laos. I've been to Chiang Saen a couple of times before and was never happy with our accommodations. Since our night in Chiang Saen was going to be the only night my friends stayed in a Thai hotel, we wanted to stay in a relatively nice place.

    Before I found this thread my farang wife emailed the River Hill Hotel asking if they would discount the 990 baht internet rate since we needed 3 rooms. They offered a 10% discount and we agreed without having to pay anything up front. We got to the hotel and, of course, the rate changed. They told us we could have the rooms for 800 baht.

    The rooms were clean and fine. Breakfast (included) was good. Staff was friendly. My only complaint is that it's a little too far from the center of town to walk. I checked out some of the other hotels mentioned here for future trips. Goldenland is no closer and equally expensive. I looked for the Honey Hotel but couldn't find it, even with the pictures above. I'm sure Ian's place is great but we wanted to be in town. I'll stay in the River Hill again on my next trip and I'd recommend to anyone staying in Chiang Saen.
  11. Idaho Rider

    Idaho Rider Ol'Timer

    We rolled through Chiang Saen last month and stayed at the Bann Rot Fai also known as the Sunshine Resort. (It has a railroad car out front..... never did ask how it got there.) Right on the Mekong, the view with morning coffee was grand. It is probably too far to walk into town, but we loved the place. 800 baht for a nice AC room, and the owner Khun Tao literally took off at a jog to get us stuff each time we needed something. Best service on the trip.

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