Cheap and convenient guest house, just outside the old city

We’ve stayed at Elegant Lanna guest house a couple of times while visiting Chiang Mai and, although I could never say it’s my all-time favourite place to stay in Thailand, we’re never actually disappointed with it. It’s a boutique guesthouse decorated in the traditional Lanna style for which Chiang Mai is famous. This style uses a lot of carved wood and dark colours, but is very stylish and tasteful.

The guest house offers 14 rooms spread over four levels. There is no lift, so you have to walk up and down the stairs. But the friendly staff and the charming style of the place more than make up for that, especially at the price.

The coffee shop at Elegant Lanna guest house
The coffee shop at Elegant Lanna guest house

The location of Elegant Lanna is interesting, and a bit challenging to find your way back to after a long day exploring. It sits just outside the city wall, tucked down the end of a tiny lane, at the end of another tiny lane. The only things close by are one of the older temples in the city and the Mr Whisky Trek guest house which seems to be very popular with young European backpackers. That said, Elegant Lanna seems to be very popular with older European flashpackers!

Standard guest room at Elegant Lanna guest house
Standard guest room at Elegant Lanna guest house

Its location is quite close to the Tha Pae Gate, which is the centre of Chiang Mai. So it’s very convenient to get to the night market and the Saturday street market and Sunday street market. There is also a very good Thai massage school just at the entrance to the lane where you can get one of the most professional massages in Chiang Mai.

The office at Elegant Lanna guest house
The office at Elegant Lanna guest house

I read a few complaints about noise and bugs on the TripAdvisor forums when researching this guest house. We certainly had a trail of ants in our bathroom in both of the rooms we stayed in, and after the first night at Elegant Lanna I had to ask for a change of room as the noise on the fourth floor from a nearby nightclub/disco was very bad and went on until the wee hours of the morning. But when we moved down to level two, that was no longer an issue.

The very reasonable room charge (advertised at 690 Bt but often discounted) includes a light breakfast of fresh fruit, toast, jam and tea or coffee which is a great way to start the day. Breakfast is served in a charming little garden area at the front of the guest house. You can book and confirm Elegant Lanna guest house online.

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