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All reviewsli riverminute walkkarst mountainsbeautiful locationchinese foodbest of both worldsthe hustle and bustletown centrethird floortaxi rideweek triplocal beerstayed nightsrooftop terracepeaceful retreatrent a bikefive star hotel
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Reviewed 26 May 2010

It is a hidden gem and not very often you will discover this kind of accommodation in China.
It is just 20 minutes by walking from the noisy and busy downtown of Yangzhou at the Li River. But you have the impression you are miles away in the country side.
The Li River is run by a Chinese/ Australian couple that also run the Buffalo Bar in Yangzhou. Theerfore the Buffalo Bar is the perfect stop to get a taxi organized to bring you back to the Li River Retreat.
Apart from the beautiful landscape (frankly there is not a single ugly spot in the entire Yangzhou district) the food and the staff are wonderful. Despite offering a wide range of western and chinese food, all the food is lovely and very good. In particular the chinese is real and not some western fake. But if you love the dinner the breakfast is all you can ask for - wonderful.
The service is very good and friendly and that not all staff speaks English makes it even better, because it gives you a true impression of the friendliness of Chinese people outside the big cities. As a single word in Chinese word form you will light up their faces!
The rooms are good and being on the second or third floor you have a balcony or a terrace with a wonderful view. So make sure you pay the extra dollar and do not take a room on ground floor as your privacy is limited as the outside dining is just in front of you.
Airport Pick up booked via the hotel web side worked perfect and I would do it again. They will organise you good drivers for your day trips, too.

I would highly recommend the hotel to everyone except the party people of West Street, Yangzhou.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Rouwen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 May 2010

The Li River Retreat seems more remote than it actually is and the detour created by the road construction makes it feel even more remote. I only stayed one night but I still made the trip several times through the rain created mud roads that became a bit of a challenge to navigate. Other reviewers seemed to think the construction would be over by now but while I was there I never saw anyone actually working on the construction and it looked like it was settling in for a while.

I was given the small king bed room on the upper floor with two large floor to ceiling windows. The front window looks out on the communal public patio and walkway. With the only chairs in the room next to that window it can be rather surprising to have someone walking by inches from where you are sitting. There is also a balcony off the side window which is more private with a low wall dividing it from the public space. The room had an AC unit which was great since it was quite warm and humid. Sitting out on the patio was difficult with all of the mosquitos. Fortunately I had brought bug spray but they were quite pesky.

The hotel is on a hillside with the river across a road and down an embankment. It's not real close but certainly visible through the trees from the hotel balcony. The karsts are stunning. I especially enjoyed them after returning from the light show in Yangshou when they were still lighted. It was amazing to be able to take time exposure photographs of them at night. I hadn't expected that.

The hotel staff, all women, were very pleasant and helpful, even carrying my suitcase up three flights of stairs to my room. They made me feel very welcome.

If I was to return to Yangshou I think I would probably stay at the Yangshou Mountain Retreat. It's also outside of town but doesn't seem as remote. It's also right on the Dragon River where there is more to see. I drove by it on the way to rent a raft to float down the river and also passed it on the river. It looked good from both views.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled solo
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Thank mtroc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 May 2010

This place is great. Good food, sensibly priced drinks. Really friendly, helpful, lovely staff. We just loved it. Waking up with a view out over the Li River followed by a fresh breakfast to set you up for your bike ride or river trip. Its an easy fifteen minute stroll into 'Yangers' along the river. The construction work on the pier will be finished now making the walk into town even easier(though less interesting).Oh, and it was spotlessly clean as well.
You owe it to yourselves to stay there

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank GillJezz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 May 2010

Although it's a little out of the way, the hotel was a great experience. We opted for the king bed room with views from 2 sides. We read that the room was small, and it was, but not too small as to be uncomfortable. The staff was very, very friendly and helpful. The food at the restaurant was available almost any time you wanted it and it was very good. It was close enough to Yangshuo town to not be a problem even though there was road construction that lengthened the trip. Alternatively, we took a water taxi from town back to the hotel. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay even though it rained a lot.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank sdtravels87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 May 2010

The Li River Retreat, as its name implies, is a quiet haven, located about ten minutes by taxi and 30 to 40 minutes on foot from the town of Yangshuo in the Guilin area of China. They'll arrange transport by boat or car if you don't feel like walking to the town, where they also run the Buffalo Bar, an ex-pat magnet where the very helpful Alf often holds court. The restaurant is good, the views of the river and the hills are superb, and the staff are friendly and helpful, although could be firmer dealing with late night revellers who really ought to stay in the lively town if they want to booze and party into the night. The Retreat is good for families too, and the rooms are nicely furnished, although some seem a bit exposed to the dining terrace. All in all, highly recommended, and not too expensive although there are certainly cheaper places in the town. Alice Zheng has been working at the hotel and is an excellent guide for cycling trips and other tours: {--}

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled on business
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Thank Tim B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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