Rosewood Luang Prabang
What We Love
- Complimentary car service
- Designer Bill Bensley dedicated each room here to a famous traveler from the early 20th century
- Bottega toiletries in all guest bathrooms
- Traditional Laotian hot compress massages at the hilltop spa
What To Know
- The grounds include an organic garden, which supplies the fruits, vegetables, and herbs for the resort’s restaurant—a hat-tip to Laos’s foraging culture
- Traditional local cuisine served family-style at the hotel’s Great House
- Bamboo dancing, river fishing, and weaving classes are available for younger guests
- The oval pool here overlooks a natural waterfall
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
Choose between a riverside suite, waterfall villa, or hilltop tent at this safari-chic retreat in northern Laos from luxe resort designer Bill Bensley
This rainforest hideaway, sprawled on the outskirts of Luang Prabang, promises French Colonial grandeur, tropical trimmings, and best of all, total seclusion. With just 23 rooms scattered across a gushing Nam Dong river, the imaginative interiors here are positively Kipling-esque. Carved wall panels, silk lanterns, claw-foot bathtubs, and teak are everywhere you look, while elegant accents (like French flea market-sourced antiques and framed copies of turn-of-the-century newspapers) lend it an Instagrammable je ne sais quoi. Local culture abounds in the form of Hmong treatments at the tented spa, and the copious use of indigo, a color favored by the area’s hill tribes. Hints of its indigenous roots are also detectable at the resort’s farm-to-table restaurant, The Great House, which serves Royal Laotian fare such as sticky rice and grilled river fish with eggplant and kefir leaves in a lavish, manor-inspired space. It’s the after-hours cocktail bar, a former working bridge, that really steals the scene, where guests sip on vintage Negronis in the company of 210 hand-carved elephant statues.
In the Area
Despite its far-flung feel, the resort is just ten minutes from Luang Prabang’s dynamic historic district (the airport is about half an hour away). If the property’s on-site facilities seem light, it’s intentional. The Rosewood prides itself on an extensive menu of bespoke local excursions, ranging from meditation sessions with Buddhist monks to guided walks to the working farms of neighboring Nadueay. The concierge is happy to arrange a visit to the pottery village of Ban Jarn, where you can try your hand at vase making before hauling your ceramic creations back home.
How to Get There
My wife and I stayed there in June 2019 and we had an amazing time. The staff was extremely friendly and made us feel very welcome. Particularly, Pilot, who was helping us during our meals, did really go above and beyond. My wife was pregnant, having trouble feeling sick with common food. He made sure the food was prepared in the way my wife requested, even some dishes that were not in the menu. Really recommend this place.
I would like to share our experience in Rosewood Luang Prabang, we stayed in our honeymoon and the first impression you have at your arrival is...this is the one.
The staff of the hotel picked us up from the airport, very very friendly and close, always at the disposal of the client. The front desk and main building is superb, with a colonial style and opened just a year ago, you are immediately impressed of the good taste of all the details and the design of the gardens, rooms and decoration.
It couldn’t be more perfect, we really recommend this place as it is a natural haven where to stay. Our room was incredible, the views outstanding just in front of a natural waterfall.
It is impossible to describe accurately so many things we lived these days, but all we can do is thanks to all the staff, chefs, driver, spa massage and everyone who made our experience unforgettable.
The highlights at this resort for us were:
- River flowing through the property and the bar on the bridge over the river
- Excellent food
- The property has 23 rooms/suites/villas and tents in total. Hence, for most part you feel like you are the only guests there
- The general manager is around and checking-in with guests periodically. The entire team was fantastic
- Complimentary on-demand transport (airport and town). Town is about 15 minutes away by car
- Except for one day, we never saw the main pool being used. It is close to the river and the main house which is where the restaurant is
Some other things:
- We booked and stayed at the waterfall villa which had a plunge pool. The room felt very crammed for space (bathroom was good size) and limited natural light coming into the room due to the covered patio in the front with thick foliage in front of that and lack of windows in the villa (there was a window with wooden doors and no glass windows – so opening it would mean inviting bugs etc).
- On the last day, we toured a riverside suite and a tent. The riverside suite is a category lower than waterfall villa but probably 3x in size and lot of natural light streaming in. The tent was nice too with views of mountains but a decent work-out to get to (lot of steps).
- On the 1st night, there was a set of lamps that did not turn off all the way (they still emitted some light when turned-off). Next day, after 3 conversations with different people I had to contact the GM as the previous employees insisted there was no problem. That night, they fixed the issue by removing those bulbs (wall scones). Next day (day 3), they fixed he problem. Neither the problem should have existed to begin with nor should it have taken 4 conversations to have it fixed
- On 3 of the 4 nights we stayed the Ac would turn off automatically. Apparently, when the power goes out and the hotel generator kicks-in, the Ac turns off. You have to manually turn it on. Given how hot it is even at night, this prevented us from getting good sleep at night as we would wake up when it got uncomfortably hot in the room and fidget with the remote in sleep to turn the AC on. Not an issue one should have to deal with at this price point.
- There is thick foliage around the waterfall villas. This was beautiful and I appreciate that they did the construction around the foliage. However, that meant you shared your room with other guests (lizards, occasional spider and on the day we were checking out there were two ticks on the bed). Just something to be aware of.
Overall, I would stay for the Service and Food in a riverside suite next time. There are also several other really nice hotels such as Aman, Avani+, Sofitel and Belmond which are much closer to town (we had a meal at the first three and Aman and Avani+ were excellent. Sofitel the resort was pretty but the food was not good).