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Reviewed 22 January 2012

We arrived in Chiang Mai, Thailand a few days before New Years, December 2011. We heard about Pai from many people so we thought we'd spend a quiet weekend in the country. Turns out, Pai is a HUGE Thai vacation destination. Totally overrun with new years visitors. And loud, too.

But, we hopped off the bus, walked down the crowded main street that leads toward the river and entered Rim Pai Cottages. Immediate quiet and calm, even though the crowds were just a few feet away on the walking street.

I made our reservation with Moo who was one of the most wonderful people to deal with and that attitude extended across the entire staff. Beautiful bungalows, all on stilts, along the Pai river. There is a riverside set of cheap bungalows directly across the river that may get noisy, at least on New Years Eve they did, but it's New Years Eve.

The cottages were rustic and we had a "riverline" cottage, feet from the river, with a comfortable bed, mosquito netting, a balcony over the river and, blissfully, no TV. Breakfast was pretty good and served outdoors.

Overall, we loved this place and would return happily during quieter times. A little pricey for the area but not pricey for the level of accommodation.

If you have $50 or $60 for a night, do it. Seriously. And location can't be beat.

Date of stay: December 2011
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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1  Thank rkiel22
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 9 January 2012

The Lonely Planet has the Rim-Pai cottage in the Top End category, but I suspect that classification may be based on price only as the rooms are distinctly "Mid Range" at the very best (we stayed in guesthouses with similar facilities). It's also their "pick" for Pai but I'm not sure I'd agree with that, although I didn't go see any other hotels.

The setting is really lovely and the individual bungalows are very pretty. You have grassy lawns with a swing and nice views of the river, and even a resident hedgehog. In the rooms however, there are absolutely no facilities, other than a bathroom with yellow paint in the shower that peels as you wash. Breakfast was also quite average. You're right in the middle of town, but then "town" isn't that big a place. So overall it's a nice place to hang out, but the rooms are disappointing given the attention spent on the outside, and it's probably a bit too expensive because of that.

Pai is really nice town to stroll around though, full of hippy backpackers, visiting Thais seeking colder climes and atmospheric cafes. The night market has a really nice ambiance and plenty of interesting food offerings.

Room tip: We had a Garden Superior, which is a bungalow in the garden, but this looked like all the other bungalows from the outside (maybe I'm mistaken, and maybe the inside is different... I'll never know)
Date of stay: December 2011
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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Thank zdfgjkl
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 30 December 2011

Just to make this review in context, I should clarify my trip's intention. I was not looking at relaxing at the hotel all day, it was more a base where I should start my daily sightseeing and shopping trips. So if you are looking at a resort where you have everything and don't have to even venture out, this is not the resort for you.

Pai itself is a small community on the mountain top, very backpacker and rustic, though with increasing popularity, more luxury resorts are coming up.

The resort is well located, next to Pai river and along the main street of Pai where there are plenty of local shops, eateries and small bars. Outside the resort just to the left, there are local massages, THB 200 for an hour's worth of foot massage. Bliss.

On weekends, the street just outside turns into a walking street market selling souvenirs, T-shirts and little knick-knacks and food. So beware if you rented a car, the streets will be closed at about 5 pm so you would have to find an alternate way back to the resort.

THe river itself is rather pretty in the morning, all misty and dreamy.

Room itself is basic, we were 4 persons to a room. THere's no TV at all so be warned. Breakfast is at this nice wooden house and you can choose between American style or Thai style.

THe service is really basic. The receptionist who checked us in was also the server at breakfast. By 8 pm there is no staff on standby so forget room service or midnight housekeeping.

All in all I had a good stay as the resort was clean, self-sufficient and very conveniently located. If there are any complains, it would be that the frogs are superbly vocal at night so sleeping can be quite a challenge. Other than that it was a pleasant enough stay.

Room tip: Try to get one closer to the river so you get a view at least.
Date of stay: December 2011
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
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1  Thank PrinCessPraze
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 28 December 2011

Sometimes I can congratulate myself on sniffing out the best bargain online, judging photos and prices and taking a chance on a "feeling" about a place. But this time I just plain lucked out -- a friend made the booking. To be honest, I was afraid the "cottage" in the title might mean a row of claustrophobic motel cabins. But in fact, the photos on line do not do it justice. A short walk down the bustling main street of Pai from the bus terminal, you enter the gate and.... silence. Amazing! You are surrounded by lush gardens, banana trees, bougainvillea, with little walkways to lana-style cottages that look like giant tree houses, reception and restaurant. All the buildings are teak or look like it, and our room was large and clean, with beautiful bedding and a palm-shaded deck. We borrowed books from the library at reception and sat out by the river -- the view is marred by some construction across the way, but that would be the only drawback. The full breakfast was served at umbrella covered tables on the restaurant deck -- no buffet here; you ask for whatever you'd like (eggs, bacon, sausage, tomatoes, fried potatoes, fresh fruit, yogurt, granola, toast, marmelade, coffee, tea...) and it is brought to you by a beaming waiter. Everyone we spoke to, from front desk to yard staff, was friendly and smiling and had good English. This is the best value for money hotel I've seen in a long while; we felt privileged to be there and it was pure pleasure to come into the tranquility of our cottage after a day or evening out in lively Pai.

Date of stay: November 2011
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
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Thank MAChanoi
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 16 December 2011

A short walk from the bus terminal you come across this attractive resort which is set right on the river. There are many cottages well-spaced out amongst the verdant gardens and many places to sit and relax. We chose a cottage set right on the river and you could lie in bed and watch the river toll by-beautiful. There was also a decking to sit on (we did notice that many of the decks had rotted wood and were slippery with moss). The room had an attractive bed with mosquito net, floor to celing windows, fridge, ipod docking station, no TV,no storage space, no safe. The bathroom was in rustic style with many insects (but you get that in the country). We came off-season so were able to negotiate on price.

Although the resort is indeed in a lovely setting, it is not cheap so I would expect a few more features for the price eg: we had the worst breakfast we'd ever had in a hotel in Thailand (white toast and tea/coffee only), we asked about safety deposit at reception and were met with blank stares (they don't have any facility for this),tea and coffee were only available at recption for a few hours in the afternoon, no pool, restaurant closed (off-season I guess).
Overall the staff were very friendly (but had limited english), the owner was also friendly (albeit a bit pushy). I guess you are paying for the location and setting in this touristy town, but if you don't expect much else you won't be disappointed. Despite my criticism it is still a lovely place and I may stay again.

Room tip: A cottage on the river is the best spot but also the most expensive
Date of stay: July 2011
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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Thank Globerwalker
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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