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Rachamankha

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Rachamankha

Chiang Mai, Thailand

Temple-like roofs surround multiple courtyards at Rachamankha, a small, serene hotel located within the old city walls of Chang Mai. Inspired by traditional vernacular Chinese architecture, the buildings and decor are simple but sophisticated with colonnaded courtyards leading to hidden gardens and a carefully-chosen collection of antiques, prints and fabrics offering a sense of local history and culture.

Attention to detail is key with traditional lime plaster laid over handmade bricks, and antique Chinese cabinets and rugs set beside an eclectic mix of curios from across Asia, Africa and Europe. Altogether it gives the impression of a stay at a timeless heritage home, albeit with all modern comforts and faultless service.

The 25 rooms are set around two tranquil courtyards and are similarly styled with raw silks and antique furniture combining with contemporary art and modern amenities.

The intimate, poolside restaurant serves traditional regional cuisine as well as European staples, while a quiet drink is best enjoyed in the library lounge with its deep red columns, old world charm and tall shelves packed with history and art books. There's also a massage pavilion by the open-air pool, an art gallery and a small boutique.

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Rooms

Effortlessly chic without feeling too staged, the rooms at Rachamankha feature a carefully-chosen collection of antique furniture, bright prints and local fabrics teamed with modern facilities such as air conditioning, DVD players and free Wi-Fi. The effect is impressive and offers a genuine insight into traditional living with the stripped floors, intricate woven textiles and Chinese cabinets transporting you to another era. Deluxe rooms feature romantic canopy beds draped in raw silks, while the suites have private access to the pool.

Location

The hotel is located in the heart of the old town within easy walking distance of many historic temples including 14th-century Wat Phra Singh, one of the most important in the city. Chang Mai's renowned night market and Sunday 'walking street', another significant market, are a short stroll away.

Food and Drink

The hotel restaurant focuses on traditional regional cuisine with Lanna (northern Thai), Burmese and ethnic Shan dishes featured on the menu as well as some European choices. Guests can dine indoors in the intimate dining room with its white linen tablecloths, fine porcelain and Asian antiquities, or outside on the pool-side patio. There's an extensive wine list to choose from, or should you wish to explore further afield, a wide choice of other dining options within a short walk of the hotel.

Facilities and Activities

Secluded in one of the larger courtyards is a 20 m (65 ft) pool surrounded by day beds and a massage pavilion offering a range of treatments. The hotel also has a tranquil library and lounge, its own art gallery, and offers a range of cultural performances including guitar recitals, marionette shows and heritage evenings.

Our opinion

Deceptively simple yet remarkably stylish, Rachamankha perfectly balances old world charms with modern facilities. We especially like the attention to detail, carefully chosen local curios, convenient location and friendly but discreet service.

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    Alternative places to stay nearby

    Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favourite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.

    Experiences while staying here

    The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.