Ten months on the road, and I had yet to truly splurge on accommodations. My early morning arrival at the doorstep of the recently renovated Inter City Hotel would correct this wrong. The first thing the self-proclaimed boutique hotel had going for it was location. It faced the Mekong River, and was centrally located within easy walking distance of the downtown shops and restaurants.
The interior of the hotel was beautifully decorated. I looked at two rooms, settling on the lower-priced one for $40 a night. It lacked a balcony and a bath tub, but I didn’t want to go overboard. My room was on the corner of the building, and three large windows allowed me to see a Wat and the Mekong River.
I loved the way the mattress was on a raised wooden platform, and not in the minimalist, monastic type of way I’d gotten use to in the budget places. This bed was actually comfortable! The sheets and pillows were soft and clean enough to call my own. The dark wood flooring and paneling was something new for me. In fact, the more time I spent in my room, the more I felt like it would make a great apartment for me in Washington or New York City. Probably too expensive an apartment, but maybe someday.
The room featured plenty of amenities, including air-conditioning, fan, cable TV, hot water (and good water pressure), toiletries, 1-liter of bottled water per day, housekeeping, bathrobe, and even slippers, though where I could go in them I did not know. I ordered room service on a few occasions, but refrained from accessing the mini bar. A buffet breakfast was included at the street-level restaurant as well.
Since there isn’t a lot of sightseeing to do in Vientiane, I happily spent time in my room. In the mornings, as the sun rose, the room would fill with more natural light than I could handle. The heat beaming down on me served as my alarm clock, though a quick adjustment of the air-conditioning would always make things right again.