This week’s “Feature Friday” takes you across the sea to Chiang Mai, Thailand. In the spotlight is Le Meridien Chiang Mai, a stylish hotel with a budget-friendly price tag.
Le Meridien towers high in the heart of Chiang Mai, the second largest city in Thailand and capital of the Chiang Mai Province. As part of French-born Le Meridien Hotels and Resorts, Le Meridien Chiang Mai is a blend of the brand’s European heritage and the local region’s Lanna Era style. With 384 rooms and suites (many of which offer a view of the lush green Doi Suthep mountain), the hotel offers guests modern style with an artistic flair.
It may be better to describe Le Meridien as both hotel and art gallery. The hotel showcases the work of LM100, a group of artists and cultural visionaries from around the world. The group is commissioned by the Le Meridien brand to offer their creativity to help transform the guest experience. LM100 (the “LM” stands for Le Meridien by the way) is made up of innovators from all walks of life, from photographers and designers to painters, architects, musicians, and chefs.
The works of LM100 are featured in almost every aspect of the hotel. The hotel entrance showcases the work of New York artist Hisham Bharoocha on the large glass panes. The room keycards are small pieces of artwork in themselves, featuring the talent of Sam Samore, Hisham Bharoocha, and Michael Lin. The hotel even has its own signature scent called LM01 created by Fabrice Penot and Eddie Roschi, founders of the perfume company Le Labo.
Le Meridien also encourages guests to explore the culture and art outside of the hotel. With this in mind, the brand created a unique program called “Unlock Art.” Unlock Art is a partnership with local area cultural centers that allows Le Meridien guests entrance to certain sites by simply presenting their keycard. Guests in Chiang Mai have access to the Umbrella Making Centre in Borsang.
Location, location, location
Restaurants, bars, and the popular Chiang Mai Night Bazaar are literally a few seconds walk from Le Meridien. If you’re craving a little American food away from home, Starbucks is right around the corner and there is a tasty little restaurant called The Duke’s about a block away. The Duke’s offers affordable and yummy American cuisine, including some vegetarian-friendly options. There is also a wide selection of incredibly inexpensive massage parlors within easy walking distance.
Rates and more
A stay at Le Meridien starts at around $130, including taxes and fees. Internet access in the room is about $18 a day or free for an hour in the lobby. The hotel also has two delicious restaurants and a cool bar. Latest Recipe is downstairs near the lobby and offers guests casual, family-friendly style dining (the hotel breakfast is also served here). Upstairs, Favola serves Italian food with a twist of Asian influence. (Insider’s tip: Before you enter Favola take a peek over the balcony and check out the rug in the lobby. From upstairs, you can see that the rug’s design is actually a map of Chiang Mai.) The hotel’s bar, Latitude 18 (located right next to Latest Recipe) is open all day and is a great place to have a quick drink or bite to eat.
Le Meridien offers guests a modern retreat in the heart of the culture-rich Chiang Mai. For less than $150, guests can enjoy comfy accommodations, access to art both inside and outside the hotel, and tip top service. With classy style and budget-friendly rates, Le Meridien Chiang Mai shines as this week’s awesome and affordable accommodation.
Visit Le Meridien Chiang Mai online for more information or to book your reservation.
(Note: This week’s “Feature Friday” was published late due to technical difficulties. I apologize for the inconvenience. See you next week!)
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Missed last week’s “Feature Friday”? Check out “‘Feature Friday’: The Belamar, Manhattan Beach style at an affordable price” to catch up on last Friday’s awesome and affordable accommodation.