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Inya Lake Hotel

January 15, 2011

02.01.11 Inya Lake Hotel
So here we are in Yangon, ensconsed in the rather fantastic Inya Lake Hotel. When we arrived, via a 15 minute drive from the airport, Alfie and I were welcomed by an army of concierges on the majestic porch, who took care of our luggage while we wandered through the foyer (we had so much luggage that Pete had to wait at the airport with half of it for the driver to come back for him). And would you believe it? There in the foyer of our hotel was a menagerie of animals! Real, live baa’s (2 pygmy goats), quack quacks (2), bok bok’s (1 chicken), a cockadoodledoo and 4 little bunnies. All inside a straw-laden picket- fenced enclosure which I think was supposed to resemble a nativity scene or some such. What luck! Alfie immediately stamped his (and therefore our) approval on this place. Genius!
The hotel itself nestles on the northern shore of the lake which lies in the north/middle of Yangon. It does seem to be rather far from anything so for 3 days we haven’t ventured out. As there is 34 acres of grounds and the most fantastic pool however, that doesn’t seem as bad as it sounds. The pool is huge and has an equally large baby pool attached with a wonderful mushroom-like fountain, a bridge to swim under, steps and a fairly steep incline to over 2m at the deepest end.
Pete declares the building to be Socialist. By which he means it is supposed to impress (and repress?) while all the time being made, in fact, of concrete. Indeed it is on a grand scale. How many London hotels have room for a live nativity scene in their foyers I wonder? And it is also a Testament to Teak of course. Vast acreages of floor being laid in it and all the furniture being made of it (and it is SO heavy). Our room is enormous (just as well with 15 pieces of baggage) and everything epitomises an air of faded grandeur as you might expect when the mighty have fallen. I feel I am getting into some Socialist prose here.
The staff are beyond lovely, besotted with Alfie and endlessly patient when he wants to play with the ornamental lions (he and the doormen growl and roar sweetly at each other). The uniforms are beautiful with brightly coloured lime or turquoise or royal blue blouses and matching skirts, or sarongs, for men and women alike. Well, the men have a more sober, plain shirt but all wear the ‘longyi’ (skirts).
All in all, not a bad place to get over our jetlag and acclimatise to the sun.

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