Situated alongside the somewhat quieter west bank of Hangzhous West Lake on the Yanggong Causeway, the Xihu State Guesthouse (Xihu Guobingan) provides a getaway from the bustle of central Hangzhou, while only being a 15-minute drive away. Lingyan Temple and Su Causeway are within walking distance.
Made up of eight villas set amongst the hotel's private gardens, the guesthouse was once the villa of Liu Xuexun, who passed the imperial examinations, but made his fortune running lotteries taking bets on imperial exams rather than officialdom. He used his fortune to fund building his luxurious lakeside villa at the turn of the century, which later became property of the state. The guesthouse would go on to host Chinese officials and visiting foreign dignitaries including US presidents Nixon and Bush, Henry Kissinger, Nelson Mandela, King Juan Carlos of Spain, and, of course, Mao Zedong, who stayed there 27 times.
The guesthouse offers a variety of garden and lake views. For business travelers, the guesthouse features twelve conference rooms, each set up for different business functions, a multifunction room and a business center.
The main restaurant specializes in local Hangzhou cuisine. Guests may also dine in the hotel's coffee house, one of ten private dining rooms or order from room service. Western cuisine, including breakfast, is also available.