Welcome to "Swank-ville"

**Be sure to check out a picture of my new "world traveler" in the quick post below!**

At the risk of appearing "hillbilly,"  I have to share some pictures of our hotel.  With the exception of our honeymoon at Caneel Bay Resort in St. John, USVI, this is BY FAR the nicest hotel Ian and I have ever stayed in.  (It is after all a "Platinum Five Star Award Winner.")  And we had to laugh that we are here with THREE kids under the age of four.  The hotel staff must be thrilled...

For many that have asked, no, we aren't at the White Swan.  While Lifeline used to use the White Swan, there is a lot of construction going on over at Shamian Island, and so the guides secured a contract with the Garden Hotel instead.  It is pretty much across the street from the Asia International (for those of you who were here with us when we met Caleb) and directly across the street from the Friendship Store that we shopped in when we were here to meet Kylie.  (The Banana Leaf restaurant is in that shopping center too, but I think we will be skipping it this time). 

Anyway, it is a really amazing hotel and I just have to share some pictures.  (The only advantage of arriving so late on Wednesday night was that I could snap a few pictures without anyone stepping in my way in the lobby).

These two pictures are in the entry way to the lobby as you first come in off the street.  Amazing detail work!

This picture dominates the lobby.  It is amazing!  Here is the information about it I copied from the hotel website:
"The Dream of the Red Chamber - the Golden Mural"

The Mural is installed at the center of the lobby, directly facing the front entrance. It is, at present, China’s largest marble mural with a size of 24 meters in width and 6 meters in height; in-laid with over 2 kilos (2,000 grams) of gold foil. This masterpiece of art took nearly 7 months to complete and 30 workers were involved in its carving and gold in-laying.
The whole mural recounts 12 episodes from the famous Chinese classic with beautiful and exquisite ladies fleeting, playing and resting in a magnificent garden. It depicts the lavish lifestyle of a noble family."


We had two choices of bed arrangements.  A king, or two queens.  At first we chose the queen beds, and our guide went with us to make sure we liked the room.  Word to the wise, "Queen size" does not mean the same thing in both American and Chinese culture.  Our first room had two "slightly larger than twin" beds and Ian and I weren't sure that the two of us could even sleep in one together, let alone three kids in the other.  So we switched to a king room.  And I had to take a picture BEFORE we started letting our suitcases explode!

 Our living room with office corner.  And yes, we did take Caleb out of the stroller and put him in the bed...

The rest of the living room.  There is also a flat screen in the bedroom area.  Oh, and both the bed and the couch are mega comfy! 

There is a drop down screen to provide privacy for the tub and shower room ~ the entire room is the shower.  Pretty darn cool!  And yes, despite the crazy late hour, we gave the girls a bath.  (taken from sitting on the bed).  They had awakened when we got out of the mini-van at the hotel and thought that the tub was pretty cool.  Besides, after sitting in the "smoke cloud" at the airport, I felt better with them being clean before going to bed!

The king bed lasted one night with all five of us.  We decided that an additional $30 a night was MORE THAN worth it for Ian and I to get a good night's sleep.  Even with that addition, we are paying less than we've paid to stay at a Super 8 in Blacksburg on game weekend before...


Leslie said...

Oh my gosh, this place looks so nice! I'm so glad that you're staying at a really nice hotel. Will you be there until you leave?

It looks like the girls are really enjoying the bath tub. That looks like so much fun.

Soak it up (no pun intended) and enjoy it!!

Leslie said...

First post! Score!

Grandma Shultz said...

Wow, the hotel is magnificent. Wish I was there to share in the luxury. The five of you seem so natural together - the transition from four to five looks so natural.
The picture of the girls in the tub is so cute.
Praying that this week goes well.
Love you, LaoLao

Laurie said...

A nice room like that can make all the difference, can't it? I think it might be swanky even to swanky folk! Ha! The bath picture was sooo cute! Darcy might judge you a bit on your "normal" tub when you get home! :)

adoptionroad said...

Woo-whee! That's some big city livin' there girl! We felt the same way about arriving at the Marriott. Compared to our '5-star' hotel in Nanchang... no comparison! And the little ladies in the tub is too precious. Praying the honeymoon period lasts just a bit longer for both of them. At least until you are back on a regular schedule and home. Oh and don't worry, you've missed nothing important on my blog for two weeks. Just pictures for you to enjoy when you are awake at 1am next week. ;-)

Somewhere In The Sun said...

Wow! My 5 star hotel in Nanning looked NOTHING like that! I did stay in one in GZ that had the same kind of glass around the tub. Pretty cool! Glad you get to stay in luxury!


Anonymous said...

Very nice! I am impressed. :) I think you guys are too cool to be my family! :) Love the shower and bath!!! And the gorgeous gold in-layed mural!!!
Aunt Cici

Nancy said...

WOW! Swanky! The bathroom is cool!

Sharon said...

Looks awesome!!! I want to take a bath in that bathtub!!!

Lisa said...

The China Hotel that AWAA set us up with had the same type of tub. Pretty sweet!!!! I can't imagine having that much space though. What a blessing once the suitcases start expoding! That mural is amazing!

I've missed a few posts and I'm so excited to have so much of your journey to read at once!