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“Business name change won't improve quality” 1 of 5 bubbles
Review of Nam Khan Villas Resort

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Nam Khan Villas Resort
Ranked #51 of 70 Hotels in Luang Prabang
South Korea
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Business name change won't improve quality”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 June 2011

I chose this accommodation for relaxation and peace. Instead;
- I had to endure 6 days of foul language and relentless screaming & arguing between the manager (Ms May?) & the owner (Graham Madge).
- Had to move rooms because the ceiling leaked over atleast half of the room.
- Woke up to a huge rat close by my head, gecko defacation and parts of the ceiling continually falling into the bathroom sink.
- On the sixth day having politely and calmly brought all of this to the attention of the manager, she lost complete control and started swearing at me, repeatedly using the "F" word.
- When I advised her I was leaving and I would like a refund for the final two nights I had prepaid for (I made the mistake of pre paying for 8 nights), she point blank refused and continued screaming that arguments between her & her boss were none of my business. I disagree. If a paying customer is made to feel uncomfortable so as to stay away from the property until as late in the evening as possible, I'm afraid this is my business.
- She proceeded to tell me about her sexual relations with 'the boss' and that she was not just an employee but also a partner. Even though I told her this was no business of mine and irrelevant she continued to repeat this using profane language. It was evident that she thought this gave her more authority & therefore she could say what she liked to me.
- The manager shouted there was nothing I could do to harm her business, she knew what my email address was and that she would be watching for any negative reviews in my name.
- She then said that the Police were looking for me and immigration would be waiting at the airport.
- There is no menu on offer even though a restaurant is advertised and there is certainly no pool or wifi.
- The whole complex is in terrible disrepair which the owner told me was due to the business being in financial crisis and him having no money to fix anything.
I spend a huge part of my life travelling. I am well accustomed to ants cockroaches, huge geckos and nocturnal noises all of which you certainly get at this place. These are to be expected from this type of accommodation and are not complaint worthy in my opinion. However, having travelled to over 40 countries and staying in all manner of accommodation, never have I been verbally abused, threatened or intimidated in this way nor have I ever written a negative review before.
I am a qualified barrister & solicitor with extensive experience in recognising psychological & social issues and it was clear from what I observed in my stay here that the manager is not able to deal with any form of criticism and is completely delusional & irrational. For this reason I feel compelled to write this review.
Before you make your own decision check reviews for Nam Songsai Eco Lodge (they have recently changed the name of this business, probably because Mrs Madge (who sounds lovely) is no longer involved with the running of this business.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled solo
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank frangipani72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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24 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    5
See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    2 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
London
Level Contributor
23 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 February 2010

It was lovely to arrive at Nam Khan after our long flight from London. Carolyn was both very welcoming and understanding to our jetlag.

Yes - Carolyn is a star and I think may become a legend in the travel world.

The home cooking is good.

We were compelled to stay at Nam Khan as the town centre was fully booked being Christmas. This itself was not a problem as it is not so far out of town as some of the other write ups suggest. What is wrong with a twenty minute walk to town? In the evening we would get a tuk tuk back which was easy to do.

Unfortunately I do tend to agree that the prices charged are unreasonably high for the standard of accommodation offered. We had three rooms throughout our stay for logistical reasons. Our first room was very good though still too expensive. The second was terrible (musty and damp) whilst the last was good again.

Putting Carolyn to one side, her English husband decided to play very loud music (actually it was good quality to be fair) well past midnight on Christmas Eve disrupting the sleep of his guests including me. I repeatedly had to ask him to turn it down. He made reference to it being Christmas but frankly he can come back to the UK and celebrate Brit holidays if he wishes rather than keep his guests awake. I assume this was a one off and I made sure to advise Carolyn of this unacceptable behaviour as I was departing. I am confident Mr G won't do that again!

All in all - I would like this place to do well. Carolyn especially clearly puts in a lot of effort. A reduction in prices and a slight improvement in the room quality in some of the bungalows and the prospects may well be positive. Without this I am unable to recommend it as a place to stay, which I regret.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ChilledVagabond
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 August 2009

This was my second trip to Nam Khan Villas in 5 years and was delighted to find Carolyn still there, it was like a family reunion. Carolyn once again made sure our visit wasunique organising trips and treks for us off the tourist trail. Not to forget the fantastic massages she arranged for us.
Absolutely love the villas without all the frills but with all the spirit of Luang Prabang.
The food and hospitality was great and would recommend staying there a little way out of town on the River - the perfect spot!

  • Stayed June 2009, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank jayday5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Noosa
Level Contributor
19 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 July 2009

We recently returned from Laos and enjoyed our stay in Luang Prabang for a second time. We had visited a couple of years ago and loved it so much we retuned again. We didn't book ahead and stayed a couple of nights in town but decided we enjoyed the experience of Nam Khan Villas previously more than being in town. We contacted Carolyn the owner and were lucky enough to get a lovely villa once again. Even though the resort is basic it is very charming. There is no problem catching tuk tuks around the place and Carolyn is so helpful organising anything that you need and making good suggestions.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Rosiedoggie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 June 2009

Arrived at the 'resort' and was greeted by a very nice and friendly lady called Carolyn. She was very chatty and told us all about LP as we took a breather and put our bags down. She made a great and personable first impression. Then she showed us to our room. For US$50 a night, you get a very basic fan room to which is attached a not very private toilet. There is no air con, no tv, very basic furnishings and a very obstructed view of the river. Plus this place is miles away from any civilisation. You can't just walk outside and hail a tuk tuk. They have to call and you need to wait for one to arrive since it a good few km's out of town down a muddy, pock marked dirt road. So calling it a resort and the rooms villas is a complete misnomer. Take me word for it, this place is a rip off considering what you can get in town. We were so dismayed with the accomodation here, we checked out that day and moved into town where we stayed in a fabulous room with all the mod cons for only US$35. In their defence, Carolyn was very understanding about our quick departure and said this place 'wasn't for everyone'. So if you want very little for your mega bucks, then stay here. My advise is to not waste your precious money here!

  • Stayed May 2009, travelled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Gihgih
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Luang Prabang hotels

dawn2008
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 March 2009

So when my friend and I decided to take a trip to Laos and didn't know a single person who went there, all we had was our Lonely Planet guide published in 2006. Needlessly to say, when it came time to choose a hotel we only went with the Nam Kham Villas because it looked liked like one of the more pretty guesthouses available, was away from the hustle and bustle of the town and was situated by the Nam Khan river. Groovy right?

Well, when we got into town we had no idea how much to tip the driver, or what the current Kip to Dollar ratio was. We had some idea of what we wanted to do in Laos but generally just wanted to relax, meet the people, see the views, and eat some delicious food! So when we met the owner, Carolyn Madge, we were delighted that she spoke English very well and knew everything about Laos backwards and forwards - and we're talking about authentic Laos, not fake Laos as presented in parts of town and in a 2 hour tour for $5. She was hospitable and welcomed us to take a trip down the nearby walking path taken by local school children to the weaving village. We walked through mini-hills and then a mini-forrest that followed the river and were the only foreigners for as far as we could see. Everyone was super nice and we tooled around there for half a day. There was also a temple up the hill from the guesthouse we stayed in.

The amazing thing about this location is that you wake up and your balcony will overlook the river which you can hear flowing past you; you can hear children playing in the distance; you can hear monks in the morning; at night you can hear all manner of forrest creatures - it was amazing, I was never happier to be tucked as far away from Los Angeles as I was the time I was there!

One night Carolyn cooked for us and we had a delicious chicken meal for me and vegetarian meal for my friend - non stop wine and Carolyn's son made us a wonderful bonfire to keep our feet warm when it got chilly at night. The whole delicious meal cost something like $6 and was so nice- my friend and I chatted the night away after hiking for 6 hours in the morning and shopping in the afternoon, we had great music, great wine and food, and Carolyn checked in and joined the conversation - sharing her experiences in Laos and with the community.

In the mornings we were greeted by Kam Phan who helped with the breakfast (which was included in the room rate and came with so many yummy fruits I can't find in the states). We got to know him very well, and we even email back and forth occasionally since we've left.

The experience was exactly what I was looking for and if your going to Laos for the first time Carolyn is like having a mom away from home - she knows the ins and outs of town and can really help point you in the right direction! The other great thing is that to go into town you can take a tuk tuk for $3-$5 or you can walk for about 10 minutes. I highly suggest staying here just for the walks! You see so much happening around you and cross over two bridges with views and sounds that are breath taking. I met several of the same people during my time there just by walking the same route over and over, it made me really feel at home and warm.

Lastly - I should add that my friend and I wanted to get a sense of what it would be like to stay in town for awhile too. So half way into our trip we switched guesthouses and moved into town. It's definitely nice to be in the center of town but the room was smaller, had a funny smell, the sounds were of people cooking and talking (not monks and rivers flowing and animals), there was a lot of dust and like, building material smells/fumes from the development in town, and I just felt like I was a tourist when I stayed there. The only good thing about switching mid-way is that you can catch alms at 5 or 6 am. But you can do that at Carolyn's if you have her call a tuk tuk for you in advance. If you can afford it, relax and stay at the Nam Khan Villas. It's just more authentic.

Also! - the power went out in all of Luang Prabang for 3 nights in a row while I was there. While talking to some folks in a cooking class I took one day in town, I learned that all of them (who stayed in town) had cold water in their showers; but my friend and I had warm water that morning because Carolyn has a special unit installed that doesn't rely on the city's electricity. Don't ask me how it works but I was warm and toasty during my shower - and don't underestimate the suckiness of a cold shower! I quickly learned that when I moved in town toward the end of my trip! :(

  • Stayed December 2008, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank daw2008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Australia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 March 2009

I came to Luang Prabang both to explore its amazing culture, and for a relaxing holiday away from all the hustle and bustle. Staying at Nam Khan Villas Resort certainly allowed this and more. The food was great, people were lovely and our private bungalow made it feel like we were in our own little world! Nice and close to town as well. Would definitely recommend to other travellers.

  • Stayed January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank gc06
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Nam Khan Villas Resort

Property: Nam Khan Villas Resort
Address: Route 13 Ban Vieng May | close to the new bridge, Luang Prabang 0600, Laos
Region: Laos > Luang Prabang Province > Luang Prabang
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
#7 Top resorts Hotel in Luang Prabang
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Nam Khan Villas Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Dear customer: Nam Song Sai EcoLodge former Namkhan Villas Resort is situated on the banks of the Nam Khan River close to the airport and city centre we have a selection of traditional Laotian village houses for our accommodation all rooms have river view balconies and en suite bathrooms we have a restaurant serving a selection of Lao and European food the houses are set in a natural native jungle setting. Dome and stay here with us; just pay for the room, we provide free bicycle along your staying here, free herb drinks from our herb garden, free booklet and more. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Nam Khan Hotel
Nam Khan Resort

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