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“A lush retreat surrounded by noisy urban sprawl” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Fern Paradise

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Fern Paradise
Ranked #1 of 7 Hotels in San Sai
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“A lush retreat surrounded by noisy urban sprawl”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 February 2014

I really wish I could write a glowing review about this place because there are so many great things about it. Unfortunately the rapid growth of Chiang Mai is slowly but surely ruining the ambience of what probably was once a peaceful hideaway.

As others have reported this is a family-owned resort. The property has been in the family for more than twenty years and the resort was opened about seven years ago. The cabins are constructed from old elevated rice barns. They are quaintly decorated. The surroundings are green and gorgeous. They have planted hundreds of varieties of ferns, all shapes and sizes, most of which I had never seen before. The service was generally very good. We had reserved one standard villa and one deluxe villa but were pleasantly surprised to have been given a complimentary upgrade to two deluxe villas. The food at the restaurant was quite good but not exceptional. Good Thai food is easy to find in Thailand.

A few quibbles: the photos on the website might lead you to believe the cabins are spaced out with lots of trees in between for privacy but in reality they are clustered together in close proximity. Not such a big deal. The shower and toilet could have used a bit of renovation—moldy caulking in the shower and cheap plastic fixtures. The shower head was broken and stuck on massage mode until I forced it with a tool back into spray mode and even then it didn’t work so well. Also not a big deal given the rustic environment but these would be inexpensive and easy things to fix. Some of the amenities were not usable due to disrepair. The weight machines were rusty and immobile, at least one of the bicycles had a flat tire. Not a critical problem for me as I wasn't planning to use them. The mattresses were well-worn and in need of replacement. I could feel the wires of the box springs digging in to my ribcage as I laid down. There was no exposed metal but the padding on the mattress was worn to an extent that the wire frame could be felt. This was a bigger deal as I would expect a resort that costs over $100/night to have good mattresses.

Finally, the deal breaker. Fern Paradise is not the secluded hideaway that you might expect it to be. It may have been at one time but Chiang Mai has caught up with it. You can’t *see* it from inside the resort but you can certainly *hear* it. The resort is bordered by a busy highway with lots of fast moving traffic and there is no escaping the noise. The wall of the cabin are, by design, thin. The traffic lessens at night but I actually found it more disturbing because just when you started to enjoy a few moments of tranquility a truck or motorcycle would roar by. It disturbed us enough that we decided at midnight of our first night that we would cut our four-night stay short and look for another hotel.

It’s really a pity. The small problems could easily be fixed but the encroaching city and resulting traffic noise will only get worse. It’s a big problem for a resort that bills itself as a “peaceful oasis” and unfortunately it’s not one that anybody can fix.

Room Tip: Stay as far from the highway as possible, but even then you won't escape the noise.
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Corman922
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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350 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (24)
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English first
Kentfield, California
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 January 2014 via mobile

Not only is this a place to rest your head, it is a sweet experience. The loving care that is given to every inch of the property and the kind and helpful owners make it feel like a home. The downside is that it is about a 20 minute ride to the center of the old town of Chiang Mai. The cost of a taxi is about 250 baht and the rewards of getting out of the hot hustle and bustle suited us. There is also some traffic noise but otherwise a slice of heaven. No spa but an excellent in room Thai massage was easily arranged. Thumbs up.

Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Nina G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Majorca
Level Contributor
43 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 January 2014

We absolutely loved staying at Fern Paradise, and missed it as we traveled around Thailand with our 2 small children.
Fern Paradise is situated about 20 mins by local bus outside chaotic Chiang Mai.(hail the green bus outside on the road, 10 baht pp-25p). Om and his family have created an oasis within the madness. Once you come in, you hear the birds, see the squirrels and relax. There are ferns everywhere and they are still planting!
Breakfast is served by the water, fresh orange juice, croissants, yogs, eggs etc. Service with a smile and fresh coffee. All the team and family were lovely, creating a friendly home from home.
there is a pool which was too cold to use during our stay, but at the end of every day we used to dip our feet in whilst drinking a cool beer.
We ate supper there 5 nights out of the 7. We loved it, fresh, good Thai food, with a good Thai price.There wasnt really any need to venture out, and having the kids, we didnt really want to go out again at the end of every day.
We did several tours, Om booked these for us, and he ordered any taxis you needed.
Our accomodation was great, a big barn on stilts with a jacuzzi bath. immaculately clean, and very comfortable.
There are bikes to use, go left out of FP, then left just after the bridge and explore. Paddy fields and small temples. Opposite FP there is a small park as well, if you have kids, its a great place to go and kick a football.
Cannot recommend highly enough. Go and experience FP, and Chiang Mai,,it gets under your skin............

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank casaBmajorca
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
15 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 December 2013 via mobile

The old villas are very cosy and the interior is designed with many authentic details. The owner family is incredibly friendly. The garden is just overwhelming for an european. The restaurant is situated close to a small river and serves very good local food. We never had breakfast in such a wonderful tropical surrounding before. The only negative fact you have to be aware of is the noise from the road closeby -mainly during evening rush hour. In the night it was quiet and we slept well.

Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank Renate S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newcastle, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 December 2013

we stayed 3 nights at fern paradise and wish it could have been longer. great base to come home to after a hectic day in the city or in our case, a wet weather motorbike adventure. rooms are spacious, clean and the smell of the wood that they are made from is lovely. gardens are fantastic and well loved and maintained. we had dinner at fern paradise twice during our stay and both times it was really excellent. Om and the other staff are very helpful and the free pick up and drop off at the airport was a real bonus. There were a few mosquitoes around the pool at dusk, but less in the restaurant area and nothing that a long sleeved shirts and a couple of sprays of insect repellent couldn't sort out. A genuinely welcoming and friendly little place, i hope i get to go back soon.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank seashell32
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Memphis, Tennessee
Level Contributor
15 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 November 2013

We came at night, and it was a little spooky. The cabins are all raised, with the ground level filled with swings, hammocks, table and chairs, while on the second floor, the rooms are rustic and clean, with AC and wifi. In daylight, it is paradise. Every tree alive or dead, is covered with ferns. A small but handsome pool, and water features throughout. The manager, Amar, very accommodating. The food was good. Recommend the coconut/chicken soup, enough for 2 full meal. A $7 20 minute cab ride puts you downtown, at the Old City of Chiangmai.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Herman M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bangkok
Level Contributor
29 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 November 2013 via mobile

We have just spent one night at Fern in one of their converted rice barns. It is charming and rich in character. If you appreciate these virtues and can forgive some of their foibles then it is definitely a well worth it stay.
I need to also highlight the courteous owner Khun Om who makes you feel welcomed.
Keep up the good work na krub.

Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Peak R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Fern Paradise

Property: Fern Paradise
Address: 73/1 Moo 5 Sansai | Amphr Sansai, San Sai 50210, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Chiang Mai Province > San Sai
Amenities:
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 Hotels in San Sai
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Fern Paradise 3*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The touch of nature, to live in the old rice barn, to meet the diversity of ferns, to be away from crowded city and stay in a peaceful land which is surrounded by shady trees and variety of ferns. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fern Paradise Hotel San Sai
Fern Paradise Chiang Mai Province, Thailand
Fern Paradise Hotel Chiang Mai

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