Hotel by the Red Canal, Mandalay

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Once deposited at the Hotel by the Red Canal guests can find themselves reluctant to leave the grounds to explore the city. The Red Canal is really  that pleasant – Mandalay’s only hotel which can truly call itself boutique.

There are four enchanting room categories to choose from – they call them ‘suites’ but this is overly generous – each is finished in a contemporary / traditional style, with an excellent range of amenities and charmingly unusual bathrooms. The main difference between the four categories is the outdoor space they either do or don’t offer; with uses ranging from balconies and terraces to rain-showers. Having said this, in our opinion the rooms at the back of the hotel are better avoided.

The hotel boasts an unusual freeform swimming pool, sitting at the centre of the lush, manicured gardens. Although small, the pool provides a focal point for relaxation amidst the city’s ferocious afternoon heat and there is also gorgeous underground spa.

Courtesy of the wonderful Indian General Manager, the best (Indian) dining to be had anywhere in the city is served in the main restaurant. Breakfast is served at the Spice Garden bistro or you can opt for the outside terrace – the perfect spot to watch suburban Mandalay come to life in the morning.

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