I am not loyal to the IHG chain, but when I saw Crowne Plaza had opened a new hotel in Vientiane, Laos I had to check it out. There are many cheaper options, but this hotel is a wonderful oasis and at $112/night, not all that expensive for a luxury hotel.
The hotel is in the heart of the city, but also only 10 minutes from the airport. A taxi will run you only about $10 in each direction. USD are widely used in Laos.
I arrived late at night and the lobby was deserted upon check-in. A bellman instead upon taking my single carry-on bag and escorted me up to my room.
Crowne Plaza Vientiane Room
The square-shaped room featured a hallway with a closet and mini-bar on one side and entrance to the bathroom on the other side. The main room featured a king bed and desk with a nice ergonomic office chair. The yellow, purple, and gold colors gave the room a warm and cozy feel.
The best thing about the room: ample universal power outlets. Whoever designed the room wisely did not underestimate how many outlets would be useful. Wi-fi interest was also lightning fast.
Next to the bed is another door to the bathroom. Inside the bathroom is a walk-in shower, large tub, and great art-decco accents. The toiletries are from Elemis (making me feel like I was traveling with British Airways). Additionally, a locally-produced bar of hand soap is offered next to the sink.
View from the room:
Crowne Plaza Vientiane Dining
Due to the oddity of my travels, I only ended up staying one night and so the only meal I ate at the hotel was breakfast the next morning in Mosaic. Breakfast is a real treat: the buffet is huge and the quality of ingredients superb.
Fresh juices and tremendous coffee were available, but that was not particularly surprising. What did surprise me was the large selection of food from around the world and even a fairly substantial salad bar with an attendant ready to mix your salad. If you’re on a budget, have a late breakfast at the hotel and you’ll be set until evening.
Come back in the evening for another buffet or a la carte menu.
On the ground level near the lobby is Elephant Bar which serves as a coffee shop, cafe with a full menu, bar, and cigar lounge. Outdoor seating is also available.
Beside the pool is a bar called Splash, pictured below.
Crowne Plaza Vientiane Pool + Fitness + Spa
The Crown Plaza Vientiane has a great infinity pool overlooking a town square below. In addition, a full-service spa and well-equipped fitness center are available. The fitness center even sells protein powder!
Inside the locker room is a hot tub and sauna, though even I (who loves saunas year-around) found it too hot outside to use it.
Crowne Plaza Vientiane Service
This is the first “western” five-star hotel in Vientiane and the hotel has only been opened for a few months. Thus, I expected some service lapses. For the most part, service was very good. Staff spoke good English and everyone clearly wanted to be helpful. My only complaint was that I had to chase down a waiter for a refill on coffee and juice at breakfast. Big deal…
One night is a short stay, but I hope you get a good feel for the property. It is a lovely hotel and a great oasis in the heart of Vientiane.