A flashpacker’s home away from home
Vientiane has a staggering amount of short-term furnished apartments catering to the large number of business travellers and NGO-type people, but few are as centrally located and accessible to regular travellers as Faa Apartment. If you are staying in Vientiane for more than a couple of days, it is well worth it to try and snag a spot at this place which has just six rooms.
Faa is set in a purpose-built skinny four-storey building across the road from the grand Lao National Culture Hall. It’s an absolutely fantastic location, just steps to all the cafes, restaurants, boutiques and river making this a fine base for exploring and a convenient spot to head home after a night cap.
Spacious, airy, bright and spotless rooms have a contemporary feel that you don’t often see in Laos (and that you certainly don’t see in a guesthouse at this price). Each comes with dark timber floors and trim, high ceilings, white walls and a sliding screen door that opens to a private balcony with plants and a chair. Rooms have soft queen-size beds with high quality linens, LCD TVs, free (but sluggish) WiFi, air-con, movable fan, desk, mirror and sitting areas. High windows invite sunlight but you have roller blinds for privacy. The kitchenette attached to each room has polished granite counter, a sink, microwave, fridge, hot plate and some dinnerware and cutlery. The bathrooms are bright, clean and modern, so by Lao standards that means you get a countertop and shower curtain.
All rooms are more or less the same, coming in at 240,000 kip or USD 30 which is excellent value for what you get – especially since Vientiane seems to have an epidemic of overpriced lacklustre guesthouses in the USD 20-35 range. So it’s no surprise that this place is constantly full and priority goes to those who want longer stays. The staff are friendly and helpful, and the daily housekeeping is efficient and very thorough. The rate is reduced for stays longer than a week. The rooms are more suited to those who like their privacy. Though there’s no swimming pool or lobby lounge, the place has a cosy and intimate vibe and you certainly feel like you are coming home to your own apartment, a welcome feeling if you’ve been on the road for a while.
Address: 137/01 Rue Nokeokoummane, Ban Mixay, across from National Cultural Hall
T: (021) 254 190-1;
Coordinates (for GPS): 102º36'22.4" E, 17º57'58.62" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: US$20 to 50
What we were quoted as a walk-in.
|Dbl air-con private bathroom||240,000 kip||240,000 kip|
Cindy Fan is a Canadian writer/photographer and author of So Many Miles, a website that chronicles the love of adventure, food and culture. After falling in love with sticky rice and Mekong sunsets, in 2011 she uprooted her life in Toronto to live la vida Laos. She’s travelled to over 40 countries and harbours a deep affection for Africa and Southeast Asia. In between jaunts around the world, she calls Laos and Vietnam home where you’ll find her traipsing through rice paddies, standing beside broken-down buses and in villages laughing with the locals.
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