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Joy's House
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Reviewed 31 January 2012

I stayed at Joy's House for 5 nights and from the moment I arrived, it felt like home. Joy and the rest of her 'family' worked hard to take care of me, which was really nice considering I was travelling by myself. The kids who live at Joy's House all work very hard and make sure that you feel welcome by giving you a smile whenever they see you, asking how you are and generally ensuring that everything is okay and that you are happy.

I chose to spend 2 out of the 5 nights at the farm, to spend time with the kids who live there and go to school. I had the most amazing time.

Some highlights were:
- teaching two kids from Burma who hardly spoke any English at all (or Thai for that matter!!!);
- visiting a waterfall and playing with the kids in the water
- going to the hot springs at night (which was really beautiful and special)
- walking around the farm and seeing all the crops and animals
- eating dinner with the kids in their new kitchen area
- riding a bicycle to the local market and learning how to cook pad thai, green curry and sticky rice with banana (and also how to wrap it in banana leaves!!)
- visiting the local school and seeing how similar (and yet so different!) it was compared to schools in Western countries
- riding a motorbike for the first time ever.....

Just spending time with these kids is what made it so special for me.

I can honestly say that Joy's House and the Children's Shelter Foundation have made a huge impact in these kids' lives, by giving them opportunities that they would otherwise not have had available to them. To cook alongside a deaf 14yo girl who was showing ME how to prepare the food, to get to know these people and see how they live their life, these are the things that made it all worthwhile to pay the extra $$$ for the experience.

If you get the opportunity to stay at Joy's House and the farm for a few nights, do it. It is one trip that I will never forget. Thankyou!!! :)

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled solo
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1  Thank Amy2212
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 January 2012

Joy's house is something out of the ordinary. Whilst quite expensive in parts, it is a great friendly fun and well organised establishment. The children who are part of the children's foundation are kind and always smiling. You feel special to be part of something so worthwhile whilst travelling. Would not want to have stayed anywhere else in Chiang Mai.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank blondiefoxy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2012

Joy's House is the centre of a foundation which seeks to provide help and support to disadvantaged children, some of whom are deaf and dumb. The hotel itself is a few miles out of Chiang Mai but is in a pleasant setting, centred around an old teak house. This is not a 5-star resort but rather a charming refuge where all the staff are the "graduates" of the foundation. The emphasis is on the experience (you cook your own breakfast !). The charity also operates a farm in the hills which is home to the younger children benefiting from the support programme. Everyone shares in the chores and the visitors are encouraged to participate. The farm is such a happy place - these children seem to need only their own company, with the adults monitoring rather than controlling their activities, but the end result is that they are given a chance in life which might not otherwise have been available.

When we were at Joy's House, a special Christmas party was organised and 200 children were brought down from the hill villages in buses and tuk-tuks to receive their Christmas presents (donated by the visitors) and their Christmas lunch.

One minor point - we arranged a massage. It was (relatively) expensive and the teenage masseuses were not fully trained. We were stroked rather than pummelled !

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank tombailey888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 January 2012

Picked up from airport ( always a bonus) . Accommodation clean and Joy is a welcoming host. She immediately started organising our trips which we found a little difficult to cope with having just arrived. However, the Thai massage was very welcome although quite expensive when compared with what we saw elsewhere. The main point of staying here is the Children's Foundation run by Joy and I assume that the money raised here goes to supporting that. The children are brought up on a farm in the countryside an hour away and we visited. They grow all their own vegetables and are by far the most polite children we have ever met with beaming smiles on their faces. Joy also organised a trip for us around the temples of Chiang Mai, a memorable trip on elephants combined with a trip down a river on a bamboo raft . We were also taught how to prepare Thai food both at the guesthouse and at the farm. On the final night was a complimentary barbecue and celebration of the 8 birthdays that week( including my wife's ) . All in all a fantastic experience that is a great example of sustainable tourism. We would love to return .

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank moumoulous
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 January 2012

My experience at Joy's House was amazing. We felt so welcomed and loved from the start. We also had the opportunity to stay at their farm with the children which was a unforgettable experience. The food was fresh, healthy and tasty - i loved making my own green papaya salad!

The children were all so inspiring, it was much more than a holiday, for me i felt honoured to be able to contribute in my own small way to a foundation which has such a beautiful vision. The environment at Joy's House and the farm is very unique. The staff, the nature, the animals and of course the children create a place that is magical.

I know i will not forget my time there and I am greatly looking forward to my next trip to Joy's house and the farm!

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Tharusha J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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