The Linden Centre Chosen Number #1 Small Hotel in China on Tripadvisor.com!
Unprecedented American-owned and managed, upscale heritage hotel in China’s Southeast Himalayas honored by travelers from around the world.
January 23, 2015 – Xizhou, China, The Linden Centre, a heritage hotel housed in one of China’s only national relics open to overnight stays, has garnered the award for China’s Top Small Hotel in the 2015 Travelers Choice Awards. This is the fifth year in a row that the Centre has been honored by Tripadvisor.com’s travelers.
The Linden Centre is a base for theme-oriented programs and cultural immersions. It offers guests a private and exclusive glimpse into China’s Dynastic past. Its 16 guest rooms are decorated with a carefully selected array of antiquities and fine art. The four courtyards contain private gardens, libraries, restaurants, a cafe, fitness center, conference and meeting rooms.
Known in Chinese as “Xi Lin Yuan” (short for Xizhou Center for beauty and paradise), the Linden Centre is the passion and creation of Brian and Jeanee Linden, who have over three decades of travel, business, and cultural experience throughout Asia. They have been coming to China since the early 1980s, first as students, then as journalists and scholars, and later as partners in their fine art and antique galleries in the US. However, all these visits were only fuel for a dream. Brian Linden explains, “My goal has always been to create an avenue dedicated to learning, sharing, and exploring the culture and history of China. The opening of the Linden Centre in 2008 was the first step in the realization of our dream.”
That dream has grown in the past five years. The Centre’s second heritage site is an academic base for students from Sidwell Friends and Shanghai American School. These students come for 1-4 months and work closely with the local community while continuing their regular coursework. These programs were created in partnership to promote intercultural understanding and education.
The Lindens third site, a national heritage site older and larger than the current Linden Centre, will open to the public in early April of this year. That hotel will include a cooking school, studios, 16 upscale guest rooms, a bakery/cafe and Western and Chinese restaurants and bars. A special and honorable guest from the states will attend a Public Preview of this new complex on January 30.
While it took the Lindens over four years to gain access to one of China’s most heralded examples of regional architecture, their efforts have gained support at China’s national government level, which views their careful restoration and close interaction with the local community as being a sustainable form of tourism.
Brian Linden says, “We face so many challenges and restrictions in dealing with national heritage sites. Projects like these require passion and perseverance, something that many hotel companies and investors lack. Our ability to incorporate comforts without damaging these historical homes, and train and work with local people is our greatest source of pride. Building new hotels in China, throwing money at gimmicks and hardware, is so easy. Being culturally, environmentally and financially sustainable in a market driven by quick profit takes creativity and passion!”
The international community has also honored the Lindens with accolades as diverse as Travel and Leisure’s Global Vision Award, Society of American Travel Writers Phoenix Award, CNNGo’s Top Chinese Heritage Hotel, and their recently announced finalist status for the US Secretary of State’s Corporate Excellence Award.