The hotel was nice and a decent price. Plus, that part of town is good for american tourist, some coffee shops with western food for those times you really want some american style food. Plus, bars and places that can speak english.
You might be able to use Expedia to book the room or just go direct. We used a card my wife had from a sister company to Expedia in China and they gave us a good discount. Remember ask for discounts never take the first price offered. Plus, even if they do not advertise a tour ask them to set one up for you. They might just do it. When we went to stone forest, they just arranged a van and we went without tour guide, so much cheaper.