“How would you feel about us living here?” I overhear a couple ask as I’m sipping my welcoming iced tea in the lobby of the 3 Nagas Boutique Hotel.
In the heart of the world heritage zone of Luang Prabang, 3 Nagas’ three century-old buildings are all protected by UNESCO. Each of the 15 rooms is different, but all have a balcony or terrace, a large bathroom (with huge towels), very comfortable beds, and all the usual amenities you’d expect at a boutique hotel (with the exception of a television).
You won’t have time for TV; you’ll be too busy soaking up the atmosphere of this ancient royal capital, whether it be watching the sunset in the garden or wandering the town (keep your eye out for the nagas (serpent deities) decorating the 32 temples in town).
A stay at the 3 Nagas also means you’ll have a guaranteed seat at their phenomenal restaurant, back at the quality when Amanda Hesser first wrote about it for the New York Times in 1995.
The afternoons in Luang Prabang can get hot – even in the winter. What better way to cool off than a dip in the pool?
Le Sen Boutique Hotel, because it is located outside of “downtown” Luang Prabang, has such a pool. It is the centrepiece of this zen-like hotel with 19 rooms, including two suites and one villa.
This Lao-owned and -managed hotel is barely one year old. The decor is minimalist chic, and it has the full range of amenities, plus a large fitness centre. Many staff are university students studying nearby; they’re charming and efficient.
Le Sen’s restaurant (with room service) serves both western and Lao fare, including a must-try traditional buffalo laab, luxuriant with local aromatics and herbs. A new lounge, ideal for chilling and sipping a cocktail, will soon open.