The Landmark Vientiane, the Lao PDR
I didn’t even know they had one there! When I was looking for hotels in Vientiane for my recent trip with my parents in February, Jack told me about this new hotel. He said: it is usually empty, so you should be able to get good rates.
At first, it didn’t show up on Agoda and then it showed up as being booked out for the next two months. Jack could not believe it and asked someone in our Vientiane office to call them and ask for a local rate. The best they could do was USD 220 for the cheapest room!
I gave it a pass. However, it stuck in my mind during our visit to the Lao PDR capital. We actually booked a small hotel right downtown at the riverfront, so I thought we could mosey over to the Landmark for a leisurely cup of coffee and some lounging around on their terrace.
It turned out that it was quite a walk from downtown along the shore of the Mekong River to the Landmark. If not needed, I would recommend not walking there as it is all along the main road and the riverbank – no shading anywhere to be seen. Mainly Chinese developers are developing the riverfront, but it has not been finalized yet. Once it is, it might be a nicer walk, as there will be shopping centers and hotels to take breaks.
Finally we arrived at our destination – now ready for beer instead of coffee – only to find out that there was no outdoor café! In fact, there were only a handful of guests in the pool where there were no sun chairs. Other than that, the garden looked abandoned.
The next stop was inside the hotel, where we were hoping for a nice bar, a cool drink and some jazzy tunes. But again, the place was absolutely deserted. At the long reception only one person was sitting waiting for guests who obviously did not arrive. The only other employee we saw in the whole, huge establishment was the doorman who held the door for us when we walked out.
The Landmark was interesting to visit, because in my imagination “empty” was just a few people and not real “emptiness”. I was quite happy that we did not book there because it is so far out of town and kind of eerie with no one around.
For the beer and peanuts, we went across the street to Rashmi’s Plaza hotel.