Tucked away in pretty Mae On, a mere 40 mins away from Chiang Mai city centre, is this wonderful little resort, perfect for families, couples, alone time or to hire out and fill up with friends, which is what we just did this weekend.
Thanks to the generosity of Baanpong Lodge who gave away ten free room nights to the Citylife Garden Fair’s auction last year, a group of us bid – and (yay!) won – this prize, which included breakfasts and a lavish two very happy hours of free flowing alcohol, a group of us decided to hire out the entire resort this weekend and catch up after many long months of solitary stress.
Only about twenty minutes or so from Promenada, yet the moment you walk into this resort you feel as though you should be hearing waves crashing…there is a genuinely fun beach resort vibe the minute you arrive at the pool/bar/dining area.
The semi-detached cottages have two floors and the rooms are wonderfully sized with all mod cons and amenities. It’s all clean, spacious and very comfortable, and just a mere few steps away from the pool.
We spent the afternoon playing in the pool, sun bathing, sipping cocktails, pumping out songs and then descending on the bar for the happiest of two hours. The food is Thai, international and Dutch and everything from the tender sun-dried pork and sesame seeds to the bitterballs were just spot on, and really rather inexpensive. We decided to go the Thai route for supper and managed to feed all ten of us to groaning fullness for the cost of a posh restaurant in Chiang Mai for one!
There was a dartboard, pool table, lots of board games and we had full control of the speakers which we kept busy with our cheesy nostalgic music from the ‘80s and ‘90s. The drinks menu exceeded all expectations with all the standard staples as well as some lip-smacking cocktails. The staff were all incredibly friendly and didn’t seem to mind running around meeting our (too) many demands.
Baanpong lodge is well run; its owners obviously enjoy their guests and are not precious about catering to various needs. They also have a naughty sense of fun, as you can see by the cheeky ye olde bar signs and the interesting items on sale in the resort shop. The bar seems to be popular with a few locals who pop in from time to time and the entire resort is designed to make you feel utterly at home. Whether you wish to have a quiet weekend lying by a hammock at the edge of the pool reading a good book, keep your kids busy with a bewildering number of activities – rent ATVs, cycle, take long walks – or just sit at the bar trying out the cocktails with friends, this is a lovely resort we thoroughly enjoyed and shall be back.