Between a Japanese public toilet, an English yellow submarine, a beer barrel, and a Tasmanian morgue, we have seen a lot of hotels that are, let’s say, a little different. Whether it’s just for the novelty factor, or to make a particular statement, we usually take an approach that says: whatever floats your boat – if there are guests out there willing to pay for it, then here’s to you.
This week’s oddball that’s doing the rounds everywhere from CNN to Inthralld is the Haoduo Panda Inn in China, and as much as we appreciate and support wanting to draw attention to the endangered panda, we kind of can’t decide: is this cute or creepy?
Due to open in May at the foot of the Emei mountains in Sichuan province (a World Heritage and World Culture site), the 32 rooms are panda-fied to within an inch of their lives: cuddly toys, wallpaper, bedside tables, it’s all there. If that’s not enough, each room also throws in a theme: “tea culture”, “paper-cutting”, “car theme” and more. The staff member (we presume) posing in full-on panda costume in the room photos is giving us a case of the heebie-jeebies though, and word is that there will be people in panda costumes roaming the hotel.
For those wanting to see some real pandas up close, there is a breeding centre with captive-born pandas a two-hour drive from the hotel in Chengdu. A Panda Mini room starts at 688RMB ($110), with the European Suite at 2388RMB ($384).