Our early 2016 visit to Mawlamyine showed that the accommodation scene had improved since our previous 2013 stop, though for such a great all-round destination the result is still a resounding ‘could do better’. There are a few more reasonable budget options and Cinderella is still a bright spot in the limited mid-range category, though for higher end you’re still reliant on the somewhat lacklustre Strand Hotel or Attran. The formerly shabby Ngwe Moe has come back into contention after a well thought out renovation.
The situation is evolving rapidly as tourist arrivals increase. Expect to see more new entries into Mawlamyine’s accommodation range in the near future. An interesting one to look out for will be the Queen Jayadevi Hotel – resort style accommodation with garden chalets – opening up just outside of town.
To the south, Setse Beach has the 21 Paradise Resort with a couple of other spots setting up as we visited. Cute little Amherst has a brand new hotel and a funky little guesthouse, but as of early 2016 neither were licensed to host foreigners. Thanbyuzayat provides no options, though we’d expect the situation to change sooner rather than later.
The Cinderella Hotel is not only Mawlamyine’s best accommodation option, it’s one of the best we’ve found anywhere in Burma (Myanmar). However, being small and very popular, unless you’ve booked well in advance you’re going to be very lucky to get a room during high season — and still quite fortunate during low periods. Convenient location on the central stretch of Baho Street The... Read our full review of Cinderella Hotel.
The well-situated and longstanding Ngwe Moe Hotel had just had a welcome makeover when we visited in early 2016. The large hotel now offers sparkling and tasteful rooms at reasonable prices. The reno was a good move on the owner’s part ,since as one of the town’s older hotels it was getting a bit shabby around the edges. They’re not competing with the would-be four-star Strand, but are a... Read our full review of Ngwe Moe Hotel.
Beachside 21 Paradise is the clear pick of the bunch along developing Setse Beach. They offer an array of one- and two-storey chalets set in a garden around a well-sized pool directly facing a quiet section of the beach. The resort is relatively new as of early 2016. Rooms are spotless and services will no doubt improve as they bed in. Up until recently Setse was very much restricted to local... Read our full review of 21 Paradise Hotel.
Definitely the best location in town, the Attran Hotel has bungalows -- and they really do like suburban bungalows -- on a lawn overlooking the bridge and the waterfront, right at the top northwest corner of town. The 10 front row rooms, after a recent makeover, are delightful: spacious, spotless and with fine balconies to admire the river view. All come with a lounge area as well as bedroom.... Read our full review of Attran Hotel.
Aurora Guesthouse is a friendly little spot with a central location and is a good budget deal. We reckon it provides a better budget option than the popular but decidedly grungy Breeze. Aurora is located in a three-story, pale green building, upstairs from a ground floor shop. We’re guessing it's a 1950s-period building that's been tastefully resorted. The exterior boasts a few art deco... Read our full review of Aurora Guesthouse.
An aptly name hotel, the OK is… okay. If your noise tolerance levels are good then it could be much better than just okay since rooms are fine. The location is right in the thick of things on a corner of Strand Road between the Central and New markets. Views from front rooms are splendid but the busy market kicks off early with all its accompanying noise and bustle -- therein lies the hotel’s... Read our full review of OK Hotel.
The mid-sized, mid-range Sandalwood Hotel is neither as well organised nor as attractive as our favourite, Cinderella, but it does provide a very acceptable plan B should A be full. In keeping with Mawlamyine hoteliers’ obvious penchant for pastel shades (Breeze is pale turquoise, Cinderella mauve and Aurora light green), the exterior of this modern three-storey building is powder blue.... Read our full review of Sandalwood Hotel.
It's got nothing to do with Yangon's famous Strand Hotel but Mawlamyine's Strand does possess a prime spot on the road of the same name. It's both the town's largest and most upmarket accommodation option at present. The Mawlamyaing Strand (with yet another interesting town spelling variation in its name), is located at the top end of the riverfront road north of the central market and... Read our full review of The Mawlamyaing Strand Hotel.
From the outside, funky looking Breeze, Mawlamyine’s first guesthouse, flatters to deceive; it's an appealingly restored old wood and brick colonial-period villa on the waterfront, with plenty of character. The very friendly old owner has plenty of character too, with tons of local knowledge. The central location is convenient as well. Inside however is grungy -- with a capital G -- and rooms... Read our full review of Breeze Guesthouse (or Lay Hnyin Tha).
If you’re counting every kyat, then Pann Su Wai is probably the best budget choice in Mawlamyine. They are a commendable new entry onto the budget scene. Their cheapest fan-cooled rooms are $10, so slightly more than Breeze or Aurora’s equivalents, but you’ll definitely get your extra $3’s worth here. Fan rooms with shared bathrooms (cold water only) are on the small size, but they are... Read our full review of Pann Su Wai Guesthouse.