Room Service: Swiss-Lanna Lodge – Chiang Mai, Thailand
With a low-key atmosphere and delightful setting in a traditional Thai home, Swiss-Lanna Lodge is an affordable option with plenty of local character.
Swiss-Lanna Lodge is a charming guesthouse set in a traditional Thai teak home dating back over 80 years. Managed by a Chiang Mai-native, the aesthetic here is homey, welcoming and authentically Thai.
Colourful artwork popping against dark wood walls, airy corridors and scatterings of freshly-picked flowers are all common themes throughout. A leafy garden at the front of the property further enhances the easy-breezy atmosphere.
With only seven guestrooms, it’s the kind of place where you’ll quickly get to know the other guests and staff will casually chat with you in the evening about your plans for the next day.
The guesthouse features four standard rooms on the main floor and three deluxe rooms on the second floor. Although decor and features vary from room to room, all incorporate natural materials like wood, bamboo and rattan, along with vivid, Asian-inspired artwork.
The cheapest rooms are fan-cooled and have shared bathrooms – while basic, these rooms are well-kept and come with free Wi-Fi. Some of the higher-priced standard rooms offer wall-mounted air conditioners. The deluxe rooms feel more like what you’d find at a boutique hotel, featuring minibars, private terraces, flat-screen TVs and outdoor rainfall showers.
The roster of features is short and sweet at this little guesthouse. A small terrace restaurant serves up breakfast in the morning, with options ranging from omelettes and sandwiches to Thai rice soup. The restaurant also offers drinks, including coffee, fresh fruit juices and beer, throughout the day.
There are a couple of inviting common areas, including an upper-level patio furnished with traditional Thai cushion mattresses as well as hammocks in the garden.
Swiss-Lanna Lodge’s setting in a quiet residential area is ideal for those looking to experience a less-touristy side of Chiang Mai. It’s around a 10-minute drive to the old city and to Chiang Mai’s popular night market. The airport can be reached in a 15-minute drive.
Regular bikes and motorbikes are both available for rent at the lodge, which are handy for sightseeing. Although the guesthouse is not centrally located, there are plenty of local restaurants and shops within a five-minute walk.
Rooms start at $28 per night
Wat Ket, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai, Thailand, +66 53 246 126, swisslannalodge.com