Chatrium Hotel Royal Lake Yangon
What We Love
- Where else on earth can you gaze, from your own private balcony, at the fabled golden spires of the Shwedagon Pagoda?
- Myanmar is renowned for its courteous and gentle people, and the Chatrium staff exemplifies this
- Being close to the city but neatly quarantined from its traffic jams by a vast lake and park
- Shuttle service to major attractions (on request)
What To Know
- The hotel is not in downtown Yangon, which is a blessing, not a problem. You’re just a 10-minute, $3 taxi (or a shuttle) ride from the central shopping and business zones
- If you’re looking for an uber-cool hip hotel with pumping nightlife, you’re in the wrong place, and city
- Smoking is permitted
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
Comfortably conservative though far from stuffy or dour, the Chatrium Hotel Royal Lake is an impeccably well-maintained five-star sleep surrounded by palm trees and tropical greenery. The color scheme throughout is light and bright, and rich Burmese silks and artworks with classical motifs dress the walls. With Yangon and all of Myanmar emerging from their previous identities as Rangoon and Burma, the Chatrium elegantly spans both eras without trying too hard to be chic or nostalgic.
Bed and Bath
The 300 guestrooms and suites, in eight differing configurations, start at a generous 430 square feet. Each features floor-to-ceiling French doors and a Juliet balcony from which, if you’re on the Lake/Pagoda side of the hotel, you can view the distant Shwedagon’s magnificent stupas. The decor is uncluttered, unobtrusive and tasteful, with polished wood furniture, sofas, solid desks, wool carpets and ample lighting. Everything works (as it should) and each room has blackout curtains, a TV, free WiFi and quality bedding. The off-white tiled bathrooms are simple but spacious, with illuminated mirrors and large tubs, but a limited supply of accoutrements. Club Rooms include lounge access for all-day refreshments, free afternoon tea, evening cocktails and use of the meeting room and business center.
The Chatrium’s popular Lilawadee Spa has recently been relocated and enlarged; the gym remains small. A large swimming pool, overlooked by both wings of the L-shaped hotel, dominates the grounds. On the first floor is a pub-club bar, the Ritz Exclusive Lounge, that’s just right for casual meetings and a drink, although its karaoke rooms undercut any claims to exclusivity or ritziness. The hotel has six food outlets, with an extensive buffet breakfast (Western, Japanese, Chinese and Indian offerings) served in the Emporia. The marble-floored lobby lounge and its adjacent terrace provide a social network zone of the face-to-face variety, with plenty of armchairs, nooks and a coffee shop. Light and airy, this welcoming space is dressed with Oriental rugs and mythological sculptures.
In the Area
On a hill just west of the Chatrium is the massive, World Heritage–listed Shwedagon Pagoda, Yangon’s (and Myanmar’s) crowning glory. Opposite the hotel the namesake Royal Lake and its leafy park are an agreeable escape from Yangon’s honking taxis (every time they spot a foreigner). There are few restaurants or attractions in the immediate area, but the hotel shuttle (free) or a taxi will soon have you amid downtown’s bustle and the glorious decrepitude of its colonial architecture (which has tragically been left to decay). Check out Sule Pagoda, the Pansodan Colonial Heritage Trail, the Supreme Court and Scott Market.