Riverside House probably couldn't be better situated for striking out into Chiang Mai.
It's just a few minutes stroll from both the night market and the old town and has an extensive supermarket and a 7-eleven about half a block away.
There aren't as many local food stalls around as I had hoped for when I booked the place...but they're there if you go looking.
The hotel itself has very spacious rooms and free breakfast which is...pretty limited but sufficient if you don't mind toast and jam and coffee etc.
There are really only three downsides to this place...and neither warrant dismissing the notion of booking here.
1. The front desk closes at 6pm. They give you a key for the side-access, but you have no access to safety-deposited items between 6pm and opening time the next morning...plus if you need anything after 6, you're more or less on your own. I guess this is really only a problem if you are a slightly paranoid individual who doesn't want to carry their valuables everywhere...and I likely wouldn't have even mentioned it as an issue if I hadn't been traveling with my wife. Fortunately for her, she has a pack-mule to carry everything around for her O_o.
2. The guest house is expanding and, like many hotel locations around Thailand in this, the off season, it is under construction. Expect some noise during daylight hours until October 2014.
3. The showers. Now, I think of myself as a fairly seasoned traveler who has spent a fair amount of time in this part of the world over the last 10 years and so I do understand just how lucky I am to a) get a shower at all and b) get a hot shower. That said...compared to other Thai hotels I've stayed in (and the expectations gleaned from those experiences) i was unimpressed. I'm pretty sure that the shower heater contraption on the wall, combined with the showerhead itself contain more technology between the two of them than the entirety of the Voyager space craft (it certainly seemed to contain more buttons, knobs, levers and dials). That said, it still only offers you a choice between adequate pressure and adequate heat. The shower head has two buttons and a dial on it. Don't touch them. Any of them. You won't like the result. And lastly, I have resigned myself to the fact that showering in southeast Asia is a whole-room experience...wet floors and toilet seats are inevitable no matter what you do, but this hotel features a calf-length floral print shower curtain which seems, despite its ostensible purpose, to just make matters worse...likely because it was designed for a bathtub (this may have only been my room).
That said...the above negatives are certainly first-world problems, purely cosmetic and in no way detracted from my ability to enjoy my stay here. I would definitely book here again.
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- Also Known As:
- Riverside House Hotel Chiang Mai