Where to stay in China
Whilst there are a few very notable exceptions, China has significantly less in the way of lovely boutique hotels than most countries in Asia. This is particularly the case in the big cities where the majority of hotels are large and relatively soulless. They are comfortable and clean and can be luxurious, but they are not generally overly charming. Most do not have swimming pools.
This is not a problem as China has so much to see and do outside the hotel, but it is just worth bearing this in mind. This is particularly the case if you have travelled elsewhere in Asia where sometimes the hotel can be an attraction in its own right.
There are, however, a few exceptions! These are often in small country towns such as Lijiang in Yunnan province or Yangshuo in the south of China. Here you can find one of our favourite hotels, the Mountain Retreat.
Set in magnificent countryside of steep sided limestone peaks, lush paddy fields and slowly flowing rivers, the Mountain Retreat has the most fabulous views. Although the nearby town of Yangshuo is only a short drive (or bike ride away) and offers a wide range of restaurants, cafes and shopping, the real attraction of this area is the scenery so it is ideal to be right in the middle of the best of this.
How do high-end and mid-range hotels compare?
In Beijing many of our travellers stay at the Dongfeng Hotel. This is a perfect example of a ‘typical’ Chinese hotel. It has a relatively grand marble lobby and the rooms are perfectly comfortable if a little tired around the edges. There is a reasonable breakfast and the staff try hard to be helpful so it is absolutely adequate but no more than this. However, it offers very competitive prices (which is not that usual in Beijing) so it is a good mid-range option.
If you have a more generous budget it is well worth upgrading to the Red Wall Garden Hotel. This is a very attractive hotel (somewhat unusual in the city) with traditional Chinese architecture so that the buildings are situated around a pretty central courtyard. The hotel is situated in the hutong (the traditional old alleyways of Beijing) and they provide bikes so that you can cycle through the quiet streets in search of a good local restaurant for dinner. The staff are delightful and bend over backwards to accommodate anything that you may need.
These are just a few examples of where to stay in China that past travellers have enjoyed. All our holidays are tailor-made, so once we have found out a bit more about you and your family, we will suggest a range of properties that we think will suit you best. Get in touch for firsthand advice on all aspects of family travel to China.
Call us and we will be happy to provide you with a free-of-charge no obligation itinerary and quotation designed for you.
China in pictures
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