Banyan Tree Chongqing
What We Love
- A beautiful nature escape, including your very own hot-springs dipping pool and breakfastMunching on your complimentary daily breakfast
- Staying in the foothills of the Jinyun Mountain Natural Reserve
- Swimming in the hot-springs pool in your lovely retreat
- Relaxing on the beach or at the spa
We’re strong advocates of the occasional indulgence in luxury – and if that means a good-for-you getaway to a therapeutic retreat, well, where’s the guilt in that? The Chongqing outpost of the prestigious Banyan Tree group is one of their most comprehensive spa resorts to date, featuring an array of nurturing facilities and treatments to send your spirits soaring.
The choice of location is not incidental. This south-western pocket of China is famed for its mineral-rich natural springs: little oases amid the mist-shrouded mountains and dramatic gorges. Banyan Tree Chongqing Beibei offers guests the opportunity to take in the scenery and bathe in the curative waters, with seven temperate pools fed directly from source, as well as private in-room dipping pools.
But it’s not all about soaking the days away. With three restaurants, two of which lean towards the local taste for fiery Sichuan flavours, plus a whisky and cigar lounge, a Banyan Tree boutique and a surrounding landscape begging to be hiked in. After all, if you’re going to give your calves a workout, this is exactly the kind of sanctuary you’ll want to circle back to.
How to Get There
Had a good 3 day stay here. Nothing has changed really from last year. Well, the hotel is falling apart a little bit more than last year. But that's expected under the zero-maintenance regime.
Stayed in a hotel room this time and actually enjoyed it more than the villa. For convenience. And even the hotel room has the hot spring pool on the terrace so what else do you want.
The public hot spring area was in a more dilapidated state than a year earlier. Wonder what's it gonna be like in a year or two. Actually, in a way I'm waiting for Banyan Tree to back out of this property. It really doesn't meet the standard. Feels like the entire place is rusting away.
Food is not bad. Chinese restaurant, the hotpot and the breakfast buffet. You gotta have the Dan Dan mian from the noodle stall. Wow.
This Banyan Tree is a bit differ from the others. The location is at the hot spring area. There is no private swimming pool inside the room but there is a private hot spring. Although it is not that cold in Chongqing in Jan (around 10 degree), it is good to enjoy hot spring, especially the hot spring is at balcony of the room. The hotel design is very traditional Chinese style. I stayed there for three nights, and I did not see any overseas tourists. All the guests were Chinese, and many families with small kids. Because of this, it was a bit noisy in the restaurants, at the corridors and in the gardens etc. In general, the facility and services are good.
Stayed for 2 nights under their sense of rejuvenation package. Had 3 wonderful massages there. Stayed in a doublepool villa which was spacious and the furnishing was great. They had B&O TVs inside the viilas, automatic Bidets, etc. Not all staff can speak English. Service levels generally not bad except for a few staff whose attitude is not as friendly. There were some that were very good but a pity I did not get their names. Food are mainly Chinese food. Breakfast selection great. Indoor pool and onsens were great! Gym has a lot of equipment. The main thing to do is to relax in the resort. The Qingyun mountain is not impressive and not a must go.
Stayed here for 4 nights in a villa and a hotel room. Overall a pleasant experience and probably your best choice if you want to experience hot springs near Chongqing. Overall quite good, even the service, they really are trying. Its just totally not on par with other Banyan Trees I have visited and here's why:
The first few points are general China points, hard to change it I guess:
+ sauna, steam, public hot spring area could need a good cleaning
+ also some (a lot of) maintenance in these spaces wouldn't hurt. I was in shock to find out that the resort only opened 4 years ago. Feels and looks like a good 10 years have passed without maintenance. Everything is falling apart
+ open door policy in the above areas so everything is nice and cold indoors in winter
+ unheated restaurants in winter.. People having dinner are wearing big jackets... like in a small Chinese restaurant on the roadside
+ design flaws like super tiny changing rooms when lots of space in the building is wasted on unnecessary and unutilised space
+ In-villa steam bath not working, even after 'repairs' were done
+ villa is generally too dark but this is a matter of taste I guess. Only thing I'm sure about is that 99% of guests have brighter lighting at home (especially in fluorescent neon/led-china)
+ villa bedroom could have been more spacious if well planned
+ if you extend your stay for one day it is much cheaper to do this on Ctrip than with the reception. That's so not smart.
And then comes the big one:
The resort is situated right between TWO ABANDONED AND ROTTING CONSTRUCTION SITES that haven't changed for years. Some photos below. It really takes away a lot of what the scenery could have been. One of the projects is part of the Banyan Tree group. A 300 room Angsana hotel was built but only half completed. There are 100s of buildings around the resort all standing empty with open windows. And then there are the villas which they were planning to sell at mere USD 3 million. Well, just guess what happened... They had big plans. A helicopter landing site with hangar is right next to the resort...
I have no time to talk about the great sides of a Banyan Tree resort like the b&o music player, the Japanese special WC or the amenities, because frankly at the price level you expect it. But here are some I just have to mention:
+ general friendliness of staff and although mostly lack of English skills always trying to help
+ nice bar/cigar lounge with an ok wine list. Always empty (of course)
+ great hot spring experience if you don't limit yourself to the private pool in your room/villa
+ good food, tried all 3 restaurants (don't expect China prices tho)
+ comfy and well heated rooms!
+ nice walks around the hotel grounds (if you ignore the abandoned construction projects)
Stayed here with my mother some time back and had a very relaxing stay. The hotel seemed empty which we didn't mind at all. Room had a private hot tub which was pure bliss. Rooms well furbished and food at outlets good