The Hong Changyu Inn is located inside the Pingyao City Wall, meaning it's within the UNESCO heritage site, Pingyao Ancient City. For clarification, Pingyao is a city in the Shanxi province of China and within this city is the "Ancient City" which is surrounded by a wall, like Datong's Inner City. Unlike Datong, however, this city wall and city is the total preservation of the centuries old city and wall.
The Hong Changyu Inn is within the walls, which is supposed to be vehicle free, but we were able to arrange for airport transfers directly from the hotel. It could be that the Inn is located right at the edge of the no gas powered vehicles zone because there are a lot of scooters and "golf cart" type vehicles within the ancient city's outer limits. Traveling closer to the city center, however, even those are banned. I booked the hotel via Booking.com (link goes to Inn's page on Booking.com) and the airport transfers via the innkeeper. I included the exact link so that my words won't be attributed to a different Inn or if there's a discrepancy in names.
This Inn does not take Mastercard or Visa so if you plan on using a credit card, check if they accept yours and have cash (an assortment of denominations) available for back up as they may have credit card machine issues (seems to happen a lot in China, check out my experience at the Datong Hotel) or can't make change for large bills. The Inn keeper at the Hong Changyu is quite friendly, answers correspondence in a timely manner, speaks English and generally really helpful! I wasn't around much and only noticed 2 other staff. I only mention this because the Inn and the rooms are really quite clean, considering the central, uncovered courtyard.
The décor of this Inn keeps to its historic looks as much as possible, I'd guess, but as you can see in the photos below, modern amenities are available. There's a wall mounted, flat screen tv and free Wi-Fi but no safe and no phone. To secure some of our stuff, I just secured my laptop wire lock onto one of the décor bricks of the bed and put my laptop and stuff into my suitcase that has a built in TSA lock which had enough space between the zippers for the laptop cable. The bed is made of bricks with only padding for a mattress. Scorch marks on the bricks indicate that if it's too cold you light a fire under the bed but it's sealed now so we didn't get to test it out. Now for the door, when you check in, they give you a key. It's for the padlock on your door which you will see when you move the hanging bamboo screen away. My daughter looked at it questioningly and I told her I booked the "oldest looking" Inn I could find (I wanted to experience "living in the past") and we were lucky it wasn't just a sliding door. We laughed and went in and she found an identical latch on the inside and exclaimed that we can look ourselves in.
As you can see in the photos above, this room isn't big but it's good enough as I doubt you'd be spending much time in the room anyways. The bed can sleep 2 adults one child comfortably. The frosted windows are not as frosted as you would like so keep that in mind. Also make sure you remove the toilet paper from the holder before you shower! It's almost right under the shower head. The tap water tastes kinda funny so I wouldn't recommend drinking it. We did use it to brush our teeth and wash our drink bottles and didn't get sick so it can't be that bad, right?!
The Hong Changyu Inn does offer breakfast for a small fee but we choose to walk around and try the street food as the Inn is really close to the city center where all the attractions are as well as where most of the exhibits for the Pingyao International Photography Festival will be (which is why we were in China). However, if you're not a fan of walking it may still be a bit far for you. Here's some parting shots of around the Inn.
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