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A Unique Boutique Hotel In Lhasa Tibet China

Feb 5, 2008
Lhasa China isn't everybody's idea of a vacation destination although Lhasa remains one of the most apparently remote mysterious, and even romantic places on earth. Once completely inaccessible it still isn't easy to get to, and then when you do, there is the question of where do you find a decent Lhasa Hotel.

The House of Shambhala could well be the perfect answer, and whilst it may not be the perfect example of a luxury boutique hotel it nevertheless by anyone's standards it is a unique small boutique hotel only recently opened in Lhasa Tibet, now of course in China. It is certainly vastly preferable to the faceless Chinese hotels to be found in Lhasa.

The House of Shambala is quite unlike anything that most people have ever seen in terms of it being an hotel.

It is situated in the Barkhor area in the historic heart of old Lhasa, and it looks like nothing at all as you enter off the street. In fact you will wonder if your guide has brought you to the right place as you pass a row of prayer wheels, then suddenly you find yourself in a traditional Tibetan Lhasa House which has quite obviously been lovingly restored, and turned into a real funky boutique hotel

The House of Shambalha is the kind of house where a nobleman would have lived, and is three storeyed, built around a courtyard, with prayer wheels and a shrine in the lobby.

There are 10 bedrooms and each is different from the other in size and design, painted in gold, saffron, crimson, or cinnamon, and filled with hand painted antiques, meditation chairs, yoga mats, furry white rugs, and exquisite Buddhist paintings. The whole thing has a real sort of Medieval feel to it, with the stone walls and wooden floors. The pillows and lampshades have the eyes of Buddha and all the nooks and crannies have yak butter lamps throwing shadows and emphasising the medieval feel to the place.

The beds are raised onto a Chinese style platform which just goes to emphasise the whole traditional feel of the place.

The ensuite bathrooms have stone walled showers, heat lamps which are needed and fragrant Tibetan soaps.

If you can, book an upper floor room because they get more of the sun, or alternatively if you want privacy there are two rooms which form their own courtyard, with their own separate staircase.

The view from the roof of the House of Shambhala, whilst sipping a local cocktail and watching some local dancers is absolutely breathtaking, and is just one of the things to make this a unique luxury boutique hotel. The second of course is the position astride a lane deep in old Lhasa Tibet.

Unexpectedly the rooms are warm even with snow on the ground, and there is unlimited hot water.

The restaurant has great food, a mixture of Indian, Tibetan, Chinese and Oriental with absolutely stunning tikka. Surprisingly the yak meat is delicious and well worth trying.

The Spa next door has a wonderful soaking tub, and you can have a superb massage to round of a day spent wandering around Lhasa.

The staff are all friendly and very willing, although their understanding of English is less than perfect, but this is Lhasa after all!

If Lhasa Tibet China is somewhere you want to go, then the House of Shambhala is the best place to stay, very comfortable and ideally situated to see old Lhasa.

For more information on Far East Hotels go to http://www.worldwidevacationspots.com/categories/Far-East-Hotels/
About the Author
Peter Stewart writes about in Kenya Safaris as well as authoring several articles about Worldwide Vacation Spots and he recommends Caribbean Vacation Spots
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