Accommondation in China
China's booming economy in the past three decades has boosted China's Tourism industry and rapidly improved tourism infrastructure. The number of new hotels in China is still increasing on a monthly basis. Some of them are among the best in the world. There are plenty accommodation options in China ranging from luxury to budget. Top international and domestic hotel brands can be found in almost all tourist destinations and major cities. Accommodation is never a problem in these areas even during the hottest travel season. Beside big hotels, the fast growing boutique guesthouse sector and homestays provide travelers more options and flexibility to stay, even in some of the most remote regions where average tourists are rare to reach. Generally, accommodations in China can be classified in to five categories: star hotels, non-star hotels, boutique guesthouses / hotels, homestays, and youth hostels.
China has adopted a hotel grading system similar to the western standard. 1 to 5 stars are given to a hotel by the China National Tourism Administration (CNTA) based on the hotel's facility and service quality. Majority of the luxury hotels in China are joint ventures managed by international hotel chains. The facilities and service quality of these hotels are as good as the same star rating hotels according to the international standard. Lower star rated hotels provide options of economic accommodation. Many of these hotels are generously priced, however the quality varies from adequate to quite poor.
Many new hotels have been built each year. Some of these hotels have not registered in China National Tourism Administration's rating system. These hotels mainly target on domestic leisure and business travelers. Although some of the hotels possess good facilities, they are rarely capable in serving international tourists and business travelers who often require multilingual and other supportive services.
The private sector of Chinese economy has enjoyed a rapid growth since China started its economic and social reform in the early 1980s. A reflection in the tourism and hotel industry is that private-run boutique guesthouses and hotels have occurred and thrived in the last decade. Most of these boutique hotels are small in scale but well located near or within China's tourist spots. Although the quality of these small hotels varies largely, some top notch boutique hotels are well appointed offering guests a cozy and stylish ambience.
Many international language students in China prefer living with a Chinese family for a culturally enhanced learning experience. For tourists who want to gain insight of Chinese culture, homestay is the best way to truly get to know the real Chinese lifestyle and culture. A registered homestay family needs to meet a certain quality standard such as room comfortableness, food quality, and hygienic condition to be permitted to enter the homestay market. Majority of home-stay families are hospitable and love to share Chinese custom and tradition. The tourists traveling to China during Chinese traditional festivals are highly recommended to spend one or two days with a homestay family to have immersion experience with Chinese culture.
Youth hostels provide a cheap option for budget travelers. The condition of youth hostels has been improved a lot in recent years.