Located in the relatively poor Shanxi province, Pingyao is not easy to reach. It takes a good seven to eight hours by car, driving from Beijing. But those who undertake this ‘long march' of a journey will be richly rewarded. Visiting Pingyao will brings you back to a China largely untouched by Western influence. The town seems to have fallen asleep in the Middle Ages, and has only recently woken up. It has preserved its authenticity and kept all its ancient fortifications and buildings intact. Admiring these, as you walk through the car-free streets, you feel as if you have travelled back a few centuries at least. It's easy to lose all sense of time. And in the midst of innumerable street side stalls is a remarkable hotel, Jing's Residence.
This tiny Relays
& Chateaux hotel, only open for a couple of years, exudes authentic charm.
By carefully renovating the old courtyards, and installing simple yet classy
rooms, the owners have created a masterful blend of tradition and modernity.
The unpretentious design fits superbly well with the structures and materials
of the old buildings. Having a quiet drink in the bar is pure relaxation, after
a long day of sightseeing or exploring the streets. Quality cocktails, and the
room itself is gorgeous.
The delightful restaurant is an ideal place to finish the evening. Here the food is good, so long as you avoid the seafood. You sit right by the street, so you can observe all the comings and goings of the people of Pingyao. It certainly is a remarkable experience. Once you make your way to this little town, you will see why Jing's Residence is so special. It has it all, style, charm, comfort, a great location and unusually friendly prices. Coming to Pingyao is like discovering the real China, one that lives at a very different tempo and pace than the big cities on the coast.