High end resort and spa to sooth aching limbs
There’s a few options in Chiang Rai’s high end these days; the Dusit, Meridian and the Legend though the latter does have the advantage of having a river bank location while being close to the town centre too.
A walk would probably take you 15-20 minutes but the resort does provide shuttle buses to the Night Bazaar and has bicycles for rent. Mind you bicycles are 50 baht and hour or 300 per day and shuttle buses cost 50 baht per person! Bicycles looked like pretty standard ones to us so 300 baht is taking the proverbial somewhat!
That’s our main gripe really, that whilst you might come across some interesting internet deals for rooms – particularly during low season – you then pay though the nose for everything else: drinks, meals, spa treatments and of course bicycle rental. The chalets, scattered across an extensive and naturally well maintained garden, are as you’d expect for the price, though the verandas were disappointingly small. If you have this sort of cash to splash we can understand splurging on a honeymoon villa overlooking a private Andaman Sea cove or providing vistas of glorious Gulf of Thailand sunsets but in Chiang Rai – with a view over the muddy Kok – not really.
They have superior, deluxe, grand deluxe and pool-side villas – all well appointed, spotlessly clean and tastefully decorated in a predictable Lanna style – with the more expensive options coming with plunge pool, cascade showers and private Jacuzzis so, if you’re one of those who spends half their holidays in the bathroom, this could be a good choice. Their renowned spa will also relieve you of quite a bit of cash and we confess we didn’t try it out, though it does have a good reputation, while if you’ve any cash left the in-house restaurant offers fancy Western, Thai and North Thai dishes. Just bear in mind a spa session and dinner plus wine for two will set you back nearly an equivalent of one of their gardeners’ or chambermaids’ monthly salaries. The rates below were at time of visit in mid 2015 and they were unable to provide us with 2016 rates. These are printed rates at reception which aren’t going to be the best value so, if you do wish to stay there, you’re better off checking rates on on-line booking sites.
By Mark Ord
Last updated on 3rd February, 2016.