If you find yourself stranded here, adequate accommodation is available.
The Tay Bac is the star attraction when it comes to accommodation in Lai Chau, and you should probably just head straight here and plop down. The sleeps are in three buildings — but rooms with the most spark are available in the two-story stilt-house, which features some nice shared balconies for lounging in the evening. The rooms are a bit cramped, and are fan-only, but comfortable, with... Read our full review of Tay Bac.
You'll get the same basic room here that you'll get everywhere else in town — mossie nets, broadcast TV, shower-bathrooms and so on — but the rooms at the Huyen Trang are bright, and come with big shuttered windows letting in plenty of light when you want it and keeping it out when you don't. Some of the external balconies have good views. The staff doesn't speak much in the way of... Read our full review of Huyen Trang Guest House.
Despite an over-sized and uninspiring reception area, the rooms here are decent — very clean, light and airy, with good furnishing and bedding, and tubs in the well-tiled bathrooms. There's also an air-con, cafe/restaurant on the second-floor which might be just what you're looking for on a sweltering day. Room rates would be reasonable for the standard if the hotel were elsewhere, but in... Read our full review of Phuong Thanh.