LHASA, China - Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts' new 289-room urban retreat in Lhasa, the largest five-star hotel in the plateau city, was opened on Thursday.
Like the brand itself, the debut of a Shangri-La Hotel in Lhasa marked a sort of homecoming for the hotel group, as the legendary Shangri-La - the mythical "northern paradise on earth" is believed to be somewhere on the Tibetan plateau.
"It is extremely important wherever we operate hotels that we embrace the local community and culture and our hotels reflect this authentically in both their design and offerings," said Ester Marcaida, general manager of the Shangri-La Hotel, Lhasa.
As the largest five-star hotel in Lhasa, the Shangri-La in Lhasa opens a window to Tibetan culture for tourists and guests.
Guests will be welcomed with the presentation of a white khada - a traditional ceremonial scarf that symbolizes high respect for Tibetans - when they first arrive.
This will be followed by the custom of offering chimar - a mixture of roast barley flour and butter -representing bumper harvests and auspicious wishes in life.
Guests will also be toasted with special plateau barley wine before being escorted to their rooms.
Located in the centre of Lhasa, the hotel is an ideal home base for exploring Lhasa's culturally significant Buddhist sites, including the Potala Palace, Norbulingka Park, Jokhang Temple and Ramoche Temple, all of which are within walking distance of the hotel.
Lhasa, the capital of the Tibet autonomous region, is set on a plateau 3,650 meters above sea level and is encircled by mountains, glaciers and desert-like landscape.
To help guests make the most of their visit, agents located in Routes, the hotel's one-stop business centre, can arrange group and individual travel, tours and sightseeing.