Ben Guesthouse

Ben Guesthouse

A great pool for 200 baht

More on Chiang Rai

The pseudo-Lanna-style Ben Guesthouse has an impressive exterior and a clean, well-cared for interior and, despite a somewhat eccentric location, represents very good value for money in both the budget and flashpacker ranges.

Travelfish says:

The high point is their splendid garden and spacious pool, giving the place an upmarket resort feel which the backpacker, or lower flashpacker, rates luckily don’t reflect. Placed around the garden and centrepiece pool are several separate buildings housing the various room choices. An old teak building adjacent to, and above, reception holds the fan rooms while a couple of larger, two-storey buildings, either side of the entrance—one brick, one teak—contain the air-con options. The newest and largest block rises three-storeys to the rear of the latter and contains perhaps the smartest offerings but they’d clearly run out of Lanna ideas by then and it lacks the charm of the older wooden constructions.

Some water to keep the kids entertained. : Mark Ord.
Some water to keep the kids entertained. Photo: Mark Ord

Rustic fan rooms in the original, teak building are high on atmosphere but lacking en-suite bathrooms go for the knockdown price of 200 and 300 baht, low and high seasons respectively, although that does include access to the pool.

All air-con rooms in the brick and wood blocks have private bathrooms and are simply decorated with bare brick walls or varnished wood panelling respectively and are clean and comfortable. There are no private balconies but every room—including the shared bathroom versions—do have a table and chairs outside on communal veranda areas and they’re equipped with fridge, cable TV and WiFi.

Brick finished rooms. : Mark Ord.
Brick finished rooms. Photo: Mark Ord

We weren’t so keen on the rooms in the new block where, with white walls and floor tiles, the lack of decor was more noticeable though furniture and fittings were also much newer. Tiny balconies are designed for a sneaky puff rather than actually sitting on and they do go for the same price so as we assume, with that quantity of rooms, availability won’t be a problem, you can probably take your pick anyway.

Ben’s location is not a strong point, with their estimated walking time from the centre of 15 minutes somewhat questionable, especially with a backpack. Furthermore it isn’t particularly easy to find being located down a series of suburban back streets. A tuk-tuk to the bus station will set you back 60 to 80 baht or taxi to the airport 200 baht and they’ll happily arrange transport for you.

The guesthouse can arrange tours, tickets and trekking trips and also offer bicycles and motorbikes for rent for 100 and 300 baht a day respectively. Prices are very reasonable for what you get and there’s only a small high season supplement charged between November and February.

Contact details for Ben Guesthouse

Address: 351/10 Sang Khong Noi Rd, Soi 4, can also be reached by Ratyotha Soi 1
T: (053) 716 775; (093) 316 7285;  F: (053) 752 970  
Coordinates (for GPS): 99º49'24.69" E, 19º54'15.36" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: Under 600B

Room rates

What we were quoted as a walk-in.

Sgl fan share bathroom 200 baht 300 baht
Dbl fan share bathroom 300 baht 400 baht
Dbl fan private bathroom 400 baht 500 baht
Dbl air-con private bathroom 600 baht 700 baht
Triple air-con private bathroom 850 baht 1,050 baht
Quad air-con private bathroom 1,200 baht 1,500 baht

Reviewed by

Based in Chiang Mai, Mark Ord has been travelling Southeast Asia for over two decades and first crossed paths with Travelfish on Ko Lipe in the early 1990s.

From US$26

Provided by Travelfish partner Agoda.

Our top 10 places to stay in and around Chiang Rai

Baan Bua Guest House
Baan Bua Guest House

A delightful downtown garden set-up

US$12 with Agoda

Chat House
Chat House

A great backpacker hideaway

US$15 with Agoda

Baan Baramee
Baan Baramee

Cosy and comfortable with a good location

US$15 with Agoda

Mercy Hostel
Mercy Hostel

Well-run and spotlessly clean dormitories

US$19 with Agoda

Baan Soontree Resort
Baan Soontree Resort

Good value for money flashpacker option

US$21 with Agoda

Baan Jaru
Baan Jaru

Cute flashpacker option

US$23 with Agoda

Kanlaya Place
Kanlaya Place

Smart and comfy flashpacker address

From 750 baht Walk-in