Myanmar is a country that intrigues me. Although it is now open for tourism, very little is written about the country formerly known as Burma. During my time in the country, I learned a lot about Myanmar and am thankful I get to share my experience with others.
One thing that travelers must know before traveling to Myanmar is that the tourism industry is still in its’ infancy. Although luxury accommodations are sparse, Belmond Governor’s Residence Yangon is on par with other high-end properties in Asia. During my stay, certain areas of the hotel were being restored. However, it is being done in sections, and only my spa treatment was affected, which I will mention below.
Initial Impression and Location:
Belmond Governor’s Residence Yangon exudes colonial elegance of the past while offering all of the amenities expected of today’s luxury hotel experiences. Located 30 minutes from Yangon International Airport and a quick 10-minute drive from the downtown core, the hotel is situated in the picturesque Embassy district. The hotel is a 1920’s colonial-style mansion that combines the feel of colonial Burma with the new Myanmar. The teak main mansion building was constructed nearly 100 years ago to serve as the official residence of the Governor of the Kayah State of Burma. For me, it leaves quite an impression. I enjoy the timeless elegance and modern day conveniences of the property. It indeed is a world-class luxury property.
During my stay, the rooms were in the process of being revitalized. Hand-carved teak furnishings and clean, crisp white linens make you feel as if you’ve stepped back in time. However, free wi-fi (the best connection I experienced in Myanmar) and a large modern bath made me perfectly aware that it is 2018. My room was indeed my sanctuary from the hustle and bustle of Yangon.
Be sure to start your day with the Belmond’s buffet breakfast. Many Asian countries feature savory soups for breakfast. My favorite selection was the fish mohinga soup, which is the Burmese national dish. Along with a delicious strong cup of black coffee, there is no better way to fuel yourself for a day of sightseeing or business.
Burmese Curry table is open nightly for a buffet of local dishes. Choose your selection of ingredients and have the chef cook up a delightful concoction of meats and vegetables. And the free-flowing beer is a bonus!
Spa and Activities:
During my stay, the spa was being refurbished. However, one of the guest room was converted into a temporary spa. Although the setting didn’t provide the typical luxurious experience, the massage was still relaxing and soothed my sore muscles.
A fantastic amenity at the Governor’s Residence is complimentary guest activities. Each day, a unique offering is presented. Some of the events include a gallery and antique tour in Yangon, a morning yoga class, an excursion to a local morning market, and guest cocktail parties several evenings each week. I appreciate the full range of activities and know that there is something for every guest to enjoy! My favorites are the market tour and cocktail parties (of course)!
One of the property’s outdoor highlights is the beautiful fan-shaped swimming pool. Lazing the day poolside offers a fantastic respite from the hustle and bustle of Yangon. There are plenty of lounge chairs and shade provided by traditional Burmese parasols.
The Belmond Yangon is the most luxurious property in Yangon. The colonial elegance and modern conveniences make this a great place to stay while here on business or vacation. I found that the Belmond provided the best wi-fi connection of any hotel I stayed at in Myanmar. While staying at the Belmond, take advantage of its’ ideal location in Yangon to explore the city’s iconic pagodas. Be sure to venture out and sample local foods and markets.
- Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
- Buffet breakfast daily for up to two in-room guests, served in the restaurant
- A complimentary 50-minute massage for up to two people, per room, once during stay
- Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
- Complimentary Wi-Fi