Photo: A budget option.

Sengsaly Guesthouse

Budget pick

Main road almost opposite the market T: (088) 210 165 (020) 2293 3519 

Sengsaly Guesthouse

Our rating:

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There’s nothing glamorous about Sengsaly Guesthouse but for a backpacker mindful of their money, it does the trick for a couple of nights. Unlike so many of the older generation of guesthouses in Phongsali that have gone to seed, Sengsaly still has some legs and life left.

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The building—or buildings rather—are a bit of a Frankenstein, a sum of parts. The family home is a retro pebbledash bungalow and beside it is a separate building with the more expensive rooms. We didn’t see a huge difference between those rooms and the ones at the back building, seemingly older and cheaper. The back rooms have tile floor and concrete walls, are charmless but not spartan as there’s handy furniture like table, freestanding towel rack and open wardrobe that can double as a bag stand, as well as a mirror, wall mounted rotating fan, window with mosquito net and security bars. Toilet paper and towels are provided. Without these extras, it would feel like a monastic cell.

No expense spared on the decor...

No expense spared on the decor... Photo: Cindy Fan

The basic bathrooms are more in line with a monk’s life. They sport a random mix of tile and the age shows. On the upside, it has a Western toilet (bucket flush) and an electric heated shower.

Like most Phongsali guesthouses, there’s a cold and hot drinking water dispenser as well as tea and instant coffee for all guests to help themselves to. Nothing is far within Phongsali town but Sengsaly really is in the middle of it all, diagonally across from the market. If in town to organise a trek, it’s mere steps from the Tourism Office or Amazing Lao Travel.

In summary, Sengsaly Guesthouse makes sense if opting for the cheaper rooms. Otherwise, the more expensive rooms are the same price as Viphaphone’s standard rooms, which come with English speaking service and access to a rooftop with a view. Viphaphone receives the bulk of Phongsali’s trickle of tourists so if you’d like to lay low and stay away from the “crowd”, Sengsaly is an ok place to do it.

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Walk-in rates at Sengsaly Guesthouse

Type of room
Type of room, low and high season prices
Dbl fan private bathroom
70,000 kip
70,000 kip
In back building. 100,000 kip in the front building
Room: Dbl fan private bathroom, low season: 70,000 kip, high season 70,000 kip. Notes: In back building. 100,000 kip in the front building

Where is Sengsaly Guesthouse

Sengsaly Guesthouse
Main road almost opposite the market
T: (088) 210 165 (020) 2293 3519 
Coordinates (for GPS): 102º6'12.11" E, 21º40'58.14" N
Room rates: Under US$10

Map for Sengsaly Guesthouse

Map for Sengsaly Guesthouse

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