We had an enjoyable time 8 years ago at Xiedao and revisited it to recapture the wonderful memories. To our disappointment the place has changed so much. At one extreme, it is so commercialized right now with building after building of hotel accommodation, conference rooms and what have you. On the other extreme, the traditional 'shi he yuan' is so run down and poorly maintained that you cannot wait to get out. We chose the latter because they have the outdoor hot spring tub and could offer an alfresco feel - especially nice during winter.
The beddings and bathropes in the 'shi he yuan' are uncomfortable and dirty (the sheets are yellowish, the pillows stained with sweat/saliva I think). The toilet is rusty, moldy; the wash basin dirty and flushing system faulty (the content would not go down - we had to call house keeping!). The kettle is in such poor working condition you wonder if it is even safe to use, and dirty of course with yellow stains all over it. Btw, they do not even offer you any bottles of drinking water - you have to buy at their retail shop at RMB 5/bottle.
The only consolation was the outdoor hot spring bath tub, which you have to rinse before using it. What caught us by surprise is that the water stop flowing after a short while and we have just soaked for 10 mins! Then a notice on the wall said that to save water, the management has set aside only 1 ton of water per room for use. If we need more, we have to call the front desk for another serving at RMB 60 per room. Imagine the inconvenience of scrambling out of the tub to the ropes to the phone to make that call. We paid for another ton of hot spring water for each of the 3 rooms we had since we had only started! The house keeper turned up afterwards to turn something on so we could continue our soak.
Perhaps it was wrong timing that we visited as everything seems to be closed except the fishing ponds. There was hardly any vegetables for plucking or eggs for picking; the ski slope was not ready and the whole village looked so deserted even though the hotel said it was fully occupied.
Food at the restaurants were nothing close to what we had in town and even in small, local eateries. Service attitude was bad.
Overall, it is really bad - we would not return and will not recommend to anyone.
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- Also Known As:
- Crab Island Natural Hotel Beijing