Longstay Means Convenience Without Commitment
Many of the foreigners living in Chiang Mai came here initially for extended visits or to scout locations to set-up house, finding themselves in need of what is called “longstay” accommodation. For those not sure what part of town best suits them when looking to set up their residence, or those simply planning an extended stay in town, the best option is to find a good longstay room or apartment and use that as a base. Longstay accommodations are arguably the most convenient and cheapest way to feel settled and still not be tied down with a long-term lease. The choices around town vary greatly, as some places cater only to longstay renters and are more geared towards quiet apartment life, while others are hotels and guesthouses with frequent passers-through, where everything is negotiable for longer terms of stay.
Tried-and-True Value Locations
Some of the places on offer in town are very lived-in yet clean, and offer excellent value. For instance, most people find that staying in mid-town buildings like Veerachai Court just off Thapae, is a great way to get to know the local Thais and expats while allowing for a convenient adjustment to Thai city living. Other places conveniently close, but outside of the main drags of town are the Riverside Condo located south of town and across from the Nong Hoy market, and the Buarawong Residence on Changklan Road. Both of these are set in mostly Thai neighborhoods, offering some sense of integration into local society. If you would like to begin mixing with locals, and still be close to Western comforts, these are both excellent options.
For those who enjoy a busy town feeling with all of the conveniences nearby, there are a few popular options along Huay Kaew Road and Nimmanhaemin Road. The well-worn Nakornping Condominium has some reasonably priced options, and is within easy walking distance of the local mall Kad Suan Kaew, with its Topps Supermarket.
For those simply passing through town or wishing to continue feeling like they’re on vacation meeting fellow travelers, the trusty Lai-Thai Guesthouse just outside the Jaeng Kataam corner, at the southeast end of the city is a great location for just that purpose. It always has a holidaymaker atmosphere, in part due to its small size and the central pool, with many guests lounging about it on a daily basis. While looking for a deal on cheaper longstay accommodations, a good tip is to be sure to look around at guesthouses and independent hotels, as they are usually open to having long-term guests!
Higher Standards for Higher Prices
Longstay can also have a very sophisticated side to it, if that’s your bag. Upscale short-term rentals are located all over town and are usually in condominiums or apartment buildings. In some cases you may find yourself having to make a three-month minimum deposit plus additional costs, before you can move in. If you are staying for less time than that, be diligent before you pay, but know that most residences are usually very good about returning the additional funds at the end of your stay.
Starting from the city-center, just a bit south of the moat, is the modern Smith Residence which has garnered its own following as a friendly place to stay with a community feel. The building is owned by a respected local Thai doctor, very well maintained, and only a few minutes’ walk to the Chiang Mai Gate market and on into the old city.
In a more sophisticated part of town, near the cheaper longstay accommodations mentioned earlier, are Hillside Condo #4, and the posh digs of The Dome Residence which touts itself as ‘hip and chill’. These are just off of Huay Kaew Road, and also within walking distance of Kad Suan Kaew, and the trendy shopping and eateries of Nimmanhaemin Road.
Heading south of the city for a different perspective, is one of the more pricey and modern buildings in town, The Peaks Garden Condominium. It is located just a couple of minutes’ walk from the Night Bazaar, and is close to a few favorite local eateries. Like many of the other high-end condominiums, it has a nice pool and a luxury spa located on its grounds as well.
If you are a golf enthusiast who also wants to be near the shopping and entertainment of Chiang Mai’s best mall, then the Airport Greenery might be the place for you. This new building is located across the street from the Chiang Mai Golf Driving Range, and diagonally across from Central Airport Plaza. The building also makes for easy walking to nearby Rimping Market, and is in a lively part of town that will have you mixing with locals.
Chiang Mai has a number of different longstay options, and it takes some searching to find what’s right for you. There are still further options not mentioned south of town along Hand Dong Road, and also along Canal Road and up Suthep Road, so take your time and have fun doing some research. The best part of the deal is that there is no long-term commitment, so it’s always possible to relocate as you find a different building or part of town that fits your style better.
Buarawong Hotel Serviced Apartments
Address: 129/9 Rakaeng Road (corner of Changklan Road)
Hillside Condominium #4
Address: 50/24 Huay Kaew Road
Lai Thai Guest House
Address: 111/4-5 Kotchasarn Road
Address: 345 Moo1, Ratchapruk Road
Tel: 053-218-052-4, 053-221-626
Peaks Garden Condominiums
187/14 Changklan Road
Tel: 053-820-961, 086-421-4923
Address: 324/11 Chiang Mai-Lamphun Road
Address: 37-39 Nuntharam Road
The Airport Greenery
Address: 185/28 Wualai Road
The Dome Residence Chiang Mai Hotel
Address: 1 Huay Kaew Road, Soi Plub Pueng
Address: 19 Thapae Road, Soi 2
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