Chiang Mai is known as Thailand’s jewel of the North. And at the same time, as food paradise. Even though Trace Hotelistro is not a hostel per se, it reflects everything a modern quality hostel stands for.
We stayed in the city for over a month. It’s the easy-going vibes, the numerous smiles and last but not least the design that made us fall in love with Chiang Mai.
The numerous different kind of tours and activities also make this place special.
Walk around and you will discover beautiful temples and well-designed cafés, boutique stars and accommodations.
One of them, is the brand new Trace Hotelistro.
We must admit, we do love Thai food. And this hotel combines, in a unique space:
- Unbeatable location
- Delicious food
- Warm-heart staff
Just below the Hotel, you will find the Thapae East Jazz Club. This Jazz Club with live music is one of Chiang Mai’s hidden gems.
We are Hostelgeeks, your shortcut to the most amazing hostels all over the world, the 5 Star Hostels.
Trace Hotelistro only has private rooms, but it is a budget friendly accommodation.
Fear not, if you are traveling solo and would love to stay in a dorm, check out the best hostels in Chiang Mai.
If you are traveling around Thailand, we have more hostels for you to fall in love with!
Here are all our guides for you:
- complete guide to the best hostels in Phuket
- Happynest Hostel in Chiang Rai, home to the White temple and tasty clay pots
- Yim Huai Khwang, one of the best hostels in Bangkok
- Mini Boxtel in Ao Nang, a female-only boutique hostel on the beach front
Trace Hotelistro in Chiang Mai in review
Let us introduce you to Trace Hotelistro.
1. Antique house meets boutique design
Located in an old building from the 19th in Taphae East, Trace Hotelistro is a tiny boutique hotel with only 6 beautifully designed private rooms made with love.
The owners are a group of architect friends who decided to share their designed space with visitors from around the world. They do love the sharing culture of a hostel, but the space was not big enough to build dorms.
Therefore, they built 6 cute private rooms with shared bathrooms. This way, they aim to maintain the sharing culture and community feeling of a hostel.
To take advantage of the space, there are two separate bathrooms: one for women and one for men. In each bathroom you will find three showers and toilets, and a luminous mirror with washbasin to get ready before leaving the hotel.
Read: +110 design hostels to fall in love with
The chairs and furniture are all from local manufacturers. The communal table in the lounge belongs to Tock’s father (one of the owners).
The ornamental furniture are all Thai handcrafted teak. And the lamps are actually bamboo bird cages.
It is a great idea to up-cycle the everyday objects, right? We collected 13 hostel design ideas that you can
Get inspired by our 5 Star Hostels to take your home decor to the next level.
The only thing that is not locally produced are the mattresses. The team wanted to guarantee western comfort, and they know that Thai mattresses are considered hard for many western guests. That is why they bought soft, high-quality mattresses.
They simply wanted to ensure your satisfaction.
Here is our guide to all different hostel room types.
In their restaurant: craft beer, brewed coffee, cakes, and delicious Thai dishes let you discover the cuisine of the north, with coconut cutlery and Thai pottery.
In their hotel space: local furniture and products.
Even the cream and soap in the bathroom are from a Thai company. They smell like heaven by the way! They smell so good, we actually asked where to purchase these creams. And, you can get them directly at Trace Hotelistro.
2. Food experience at home
This hotel is a new concept on the Chiang Mai scene. Trace Hotelistro is an accommodation option that combines: fantastic food and great design.
Trace Hotelistro is located in Thapae East, an important place in Chiang Mai, where many venues are held. To get there, you have to walk the popular Thapae Road.
Look for Olé Mexican Restaurant as a reference. Once you get there, step into the patio. Trace Hotelistro is inside the building on your left, on top of the Thapae Jazz Club.
Once you get to Trace Hotelistro, you will be directly in the restaurant area.The door is over 200 years old. It has been refurbished with love and care.
On the left side of the bar, you will find the reception corner.
Maybe you would like to have a drink while you check-in? They have delicious creamy coffee, a great selection of craft beers and other drinks available.
Just behind the restaurant, you will find the hotel area, separated by a door to guarantee the guest’s rest and to restrict the access.
Leave your shoes on the shelf in the left corner, put on a pair of slippers, and embrace the Thai home feeling.
Trace Hotelistro has been carefully decorated to evoke a home feeling. The doors are the original doors of the house. You will find many Thai teak and bamboo decorative elements all around. The design is modern and clean.
Even though some rooms are small, you won’t feel trapped.
They did an amazing job with the lighting to make you feel cozy and relaxed.
The comfy rooms have also been decorated with wood and teak, with lovely small touches such a mirror, hangers, bamboo lamps, a desk and a good soft mattress.
For those who have been traveling for long around South East Asia, you will sleep like a baby on these beds. We did not realize we were missing a soft mattress so much until we slept here.
3. Thai Design in an old refurbished house
This hotel is one of the oldest buildings in the city of Chiang Mai. Located on the Thapae road, the location could not be more central.
Thapae Gate was the gate through which diplomats, traders, and visiting monks passed when they had business in the city. Taphae East it is still the main center of Chiang Mai’s public city activities and festivals today.
Around this area, you will find top end handicraft boutiques, antique shops as well as restaurants and bars opening up. One of the best Italian restaurants in Chiang Mai is just in front of Trace Hotelistro.
There are also many street festivals held on Thapae road: concerts, buskers, stalls, and other forms of entertainment.
The famous Night Bazar is just 300 meters away – close enough to enjoy it, far enough to not hear it when sleeping.
It is crucial to the team to maintain the local connection. Thankfully, the hotel is placed just above one of the most local Jazz Clubs, Taphae East. There, tourist and locals meet, reunited by jazz music.
When the Jazz Club hosts a concert, you can just move downstairs to the patio or even stay in the restaurant. The staff will open the windows and turn off their music so you can enjoy the live music. It is like having a private concert at dinner.
This reminds us of Hostel Ruthensteiner, the only 5 Star Hostel in town and obviously one of the best hostels in Vienna, Austria. Here, the music is also an important element which has connected travelers all around the world.
Note: for music lovers, check out this article about best places to hear live music.
For more inspiration, we recommend following guides.
4. Family feeling with Thai Food
As mentioned before, this hotel comes only with 6 rooms. It is a small cozy place, full of family vibes. You will get this family feeling as soon as you cross the threshold. The staff will welcome you with a big smile.
During our stay in Trace Hotelistro, many curious people just came to see what was inside the building.
All of them, guests and visitors, were welcomed and invited to spend time in the restaurant area.
The restaurant is also used a common area where guests can simply relax, talk to the staff, use the wifi and meet other fellow travelers. A sofa, a community table, and good vibes make it simple to connect with other guests.
Trace Restaurant also offer tasty food, amazing cakes and one of the best coffees we tried in Chiang Mai. Ask for the brewed coffee, and if available, a piece of cake.
As it is newly opened, there are still not many customers coming to the restaurant, but we have no doubt it will be successful, the food is so tasty!
5. Warm smiley heart
Thai people are known for their smiles and that is exactly what you will find in Trace Hotelistro: Smiling, friendly staff that will help you with any issue you might have.
Met our great friends Nanda and Wasa. We spent much time with Wasa during our 1 month stay.
Wasa and Nanda, members of team, love to chat with the guests. They are very curious about the western lifestyle. Nevertheless, they won’t approach you, as it is part of their culture to respect other people’s space.
Take a seat, ask them to join, and enjoy a chit-chat with the staff. You will discover lots of facts about Thai culture and Chiang Mai itself.
The staff are always willing to improve. Therefore, do not hesitate to ask any question you might have. The hotel has only been running since early 2017 and the ratings on booking platforms are great. They like to hear any recommendations people might have. Feel free to talk to them about your ideas.
Also, they can help you organize tours, day trips, or even with renting a motorbike. They work together with Oxotel, one of the top hostels in Chiang Mai; and one of the best hostels in the world.
They have experience in tourism and know what kind of things tourists want to see in the area. Ask them for any information you might need.
In a nutshell, we love it here and we are always looking forward to coming back. To meet out friends, eat great food and be welcome like at a family home. We are convinced you would love it here as well.
Enjoy Trace, enjoy Chiang Mai!