For tourists, Udon Thani, a city in northeast Thailand, serves largely as a gateway to nearby Laos and Northern Vietnam. As a major city served by its own regional airport, Udon Thani offers a comprehensive range of lodging options to suit all budgets and demands. Options include city hotels, upscale resorts, luxury private villas and intimate guest houses.
City hotels are the most commonly available type of lodging available in Udon Thani, and within this group are options to accommodate a range of budgets and needs. The Charoen Hotel, which is located in the main business and shopping district of the city, offers 250 elegantly decorated rooms and suites. Its guest facilities include an outdoor pool and hot tub surrounded by gardens; a cocktail lounge, karaoke bar and the Yellow Bird Discotheque; and two restaurants that are open all day. The 149-room Ban Chiang Hotel is another modern establishment in the heart of the city. Its facilities include a day spa, a sauna and steam room, a fitness center and a pool, as well as several dining options. These include a casual coffee shop, a restaurant serving local Thai cuisine, and a sleek karaoke lounge. A number of city hotels in Udon Thani, such as the 12-story, 248-room Napalai Hotel, are located conveniently close to the airport but also within walking distance of numerous shops, restaurants and parks. In addition to its standard guest rooms, the Napalai Hotel offers several suites with spacious, plushly furnished living areas.
A handful of resort properties present some of the most luxurious accommodations available in Udon Thani. The NakhaBuri Resort, for example, features private guest villas among its 60 rooms, all of which offer a private balcony overlooking landscaped tropical gardens. The rooms feature elegant Thai decor with dark wood furnishings and original artwork. They surround a central lagoon-style pool and a sun terrace furnished with lounge chairs. The 11 guest rooms at the smaller Sai Thong Resort are unfussy in style, with all-white linens and tiled bathrooms. They are housed in individual cottages surrounding a pool and lawns. Guests can arrange car rental directly through the resort.
Visitors to Udon Thani seeking privacy and high-end hospitality can consider staying in a private luxury villa, such as the Rice Paddy Villa or Green Gecko. The Rice Paddy Villa has traditional Thai architecture with a high tiled roof and ancient wooden pillars salvaged from a local village. Guests enjoy access to the property via a private road. It is a two-bedroom villa with a fully equipped kitchen, large living and dining areas overlooking a private pool, and an outdoor sala -- a covered relaxation area with comfy seating and a barbecue. The Green Gecko villa consists of several Thai-style pavilions with ornate carved doors, wooden balconies and antique accents alongside ultra-contemporary amenities such as wide screen LCD televisions, both Thai-style and Western kitchens, and an oversize, multi-jetted rainfall shower in the master suite. The pavilions surround a salt water infinity-edged pool and lush tropical gardens and woodlands within the 323,000-square-foot property. Guests enjoy the services of a personal chef.
A notable alternative to hotels, resorts and private villas is the Englishman’s Retreat, which combines the facilities of a boutique hotel with a private guest house. It is located on the outskirts of the city, a location with a peaceful atmosphere amplified by high "castle walls" around the property. In addition to its guest accommodations, the retreat features a fully equipped gymnasium, a lap pool with a poolside bar, and a restaurant offering authentic Thai dishes as well as Western food.