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Where to eat, sleep and be merry in Myanmar’s cultural capital

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Eat – Root
Sisters Phyone Pong Yon and Ipkaw Pang opened Root in 2016 to show that their native Wa State, located on Myanmar’s eastern border with China, is about much more than opium production and conflict. In fact, everything about the restaurant, from the ingredients imported directly from the state to the decorative throw pillows handmade by Wa women, has been designed to banish these negative perceptions. Culinary highlights include the Wa speciality of moik, a spicy, brown rice porridge infused with green mustard leaves, and fried fish designed to be wrapped in lettuce leaves and served with peanut sauce and vermicelli.
Sleep – The Strand
From the marble-floored lobby to the elegant rattan chairs, the Strand’s grandeur is unsurpassed in Yangon. And each room is, in fact, a suite. Spread across two storeys, even the smallest guest quarters come equipped with a large, beautifully tiled bathroom, separate sitting area, walk-in dressing room and supremely comfortable, mahogany-framed bed. Built in 1901, the majestic colonial building – parts of which were temporarily turned into horse stables by Japanese soldiers during World War II – has long been the hotel of choice for Western stars, with George Orwell, Rudyard Kipling, Mick Jagger and Oliver Stone all having passed through.


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