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“Unique communist-style luxury”

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West Lake State Guesthouse
Ranked #62 of 2,387 Hotels in Hangzhou
Certificate of Excellence
Nanjing, China
Level Contributor
17 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Unique communist-style luxury”
Reviewed 11 May 2010

This is a unique hotel set in an ideal location. It's difficult to explain the place, but I'll give it a go...

When we approached the hotel in our taxi we were struck firstly by the absence of any sign marking we were entering a hotel. Instead we were met by armed police and an extremely smart man in a black suit who asked where we wanted to go. We explained that we wanted to check into our hotel and we were then ushered in. As we drove up the drive we passed a group of 3 military-looking police marching towards the gate we had just come through. This seemed slightly unnerving. However, as soon as we reached the reception villa we were pleased to find friendly smiles coming from the staff.

The check-in was quick and superb. We were driven to our villa in a buggy (only a 7 minute walk, but too far with 2 small children and luggage). The room (Garden View Room - 3101) was well equipped but not plush. Flat-screen TV, free internet (not wireless), all the usual 5 star requirements. However, there was a fairly strong smell of smoke. This didn't bother any of us, but might bother some people.

The truly great thing about the hotel is the grounds. It's set right on the lake. One morning we hailed a passing boat to take us on a tour to the islands (300RMB for an hour and a half). The grounds are superbly well manicured and feature some lovely authentic-looking architecture. The hotel is on the opposite side of the lake to the city, so it's very peaceful. Getting into town takes around 15 minutes by taxi. you could walk it in a couple of hours, less at a quick pace.

the restaurant was also really good. There were a couple of vegetarians in our party who found some great dishes in the Chinese restaurant - the fried eggplant with garlic was a delight.

All in all a truly memorable hotel - better than staying in the mainstream establishments that are so often identical to each other!

  • Stayed May 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank samexplorer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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124 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Tunbridge Wells, UK
Level Contributor
90 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 April 2009

We were completely overwhelmed by this hotel. Set in 360,000 square metres of beautifully landscaped gardens, and facing the West Lake, it is something quite out of the ordinary. Chairman Mao studied at this location, and we could see why!

Accommodation is in a number of large "villas", but on arrival at reception, you are taken to your villa in an electric cart. Reception and door staff spoke good English and were always courteious - they helped us ring an agency that had booked train tickets for us from Hangzhou to Suzhou (by the way the gardens of the Xihu State Guest House are better than any of the gardens in Suzhou!!) and apologised profusely that the hotel swimming pool was closed due to "current visit of foreign dignitaries" (our only niggle) - we never did get to find out who the important guests were, but a small area of the grounds and Building Number 1 were closed off, and a sentry standing on a little podium ensured that we did not "cross the line"!

Hangzhou is a fantastically beautiful place, but we stuck to the west side of the lake where the hotel is, which is full of beautiful gardens (the flower nursery is spectacular) and is in walking distance of many of the main sights, including the Lingyin temple and the Tea Museum. Taxis are cheap if you want to go further afield. The main city is on the east side of the lake, and is presumably the same as any other Chinese city (we caught a glimpse of the skyscrapers on our way to the station).

We did not eat at the hotel (apart from breakfast which was excellent) but enjoyed walking in the evening to a couple of excellent restaurants near the entrance to the botanical gardens. Extras (such as items from the mini-bar) tended to be overpriced.

We could go on an on about this spectacular place, but suffice to say it is SO much more to offer than your average 5 star chain hotel.

  • Stayed March 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Graham2109
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maryland
Level Contributor
59 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 February 2007

We stayed in the Xihu State Guesthouse for 2 nights in October 2005. It was a beautiful location with wonderful grounds and views of the lake. The room was large and nicely furnished, we had room service deliver breakfast (American style with eggs) one morning and it was prompt, courteous and very good. The staff was very pleasant and professional, check in was efficient.

If you want a change from the standard chain hotel, then this is an excellent option.

It is still guarded by the Chinese military and they do morning exercises so don't be surprised. There were a number of meetings going on when we were there, and the meeting facilities looked very nice. It is also a little off the beaten path, not walking distance to the town center of Hangzhou (@ 3 km), so a taxi or car would be necessary. Our Chinese host reserved the rooms for us, but they do have online bookings on their website at: [----] and other China travel agencies.

  • Liked — Beautiful location and grounds
  • Disliked — No access to town center without car
  • Stayed October 2005, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Eliza50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about West Lake State Guesthouse

Property: West Lake State Guesthouse
Address: No.18 Yanggong Causeway, Xihu District, Hangzhou 310007, China
Phone Number:
Region: China > Zhejiang > Hangzhou
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#21 Spa Hotel in Hangzhou
#55 Luxury Hotel in Hangzhou
#61 Best Value Hotel in Hangzhou
Price range (per night): ₹ 8,773 - ₹ 19,548
Hotel Class:5 star — West Lake State Guesthouse 5*
Number of rooms: 232
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The hotel was once an old abbey, and has a history over 100 years. It covers an area of 360,000㎡, backed by mountains, surrounded by West Lake, away from the noisy city, it is a resort like paradise. The hotel boasts its Chinese garden and architecture, it is known as “the most famous garden of West Lake”. Luxury hotel rooms, fine food and wine, perfect conference facilities, private music hall and theater, very local characterized lakeside teahouse, luxury yachts and boats, and lawn yoga, all these will let you enjoy a slow life in the world heritage area. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Xihu State Guesthouse Hotel Hangzhou
Xihu State Hotel

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