HOW MANY ROOMS? 107 rooms and suites
PROPERTY HIGHLIGHTS On the edge of the old town and within walking distance to the best shopping and dining, this newly expanded hotel is one of the city’s best and brightest. At first glance, it may seem like a small building, but pass through the tree-lined gardens pass various pools to discover a hidden oasis from the hustle of touristy Hoi An.
PRICE Internet rates for a traditional room on the random dates we checked start at $87 on weekends
CONTACT La Siesta Hoi An Resort, 132 Hung Vuong, Thanh Ha, Tp. Hoi An, Quang Nam, Vietnam, tel +84-235-3915915, http://lasiestaresorts.com/
VERDICT Thanks to a recent expansion with new accommodations, this hotel has only improved since changing its name from Essence Hoi An. For those looking for excellent dining and colonial-style accommodations, this is a go-to choice for American visitors.
BACKGROUND Once named the Essence Hoi An, the owners decided to change the name with the opening of its new wing of accommodations. With it comes a renewed sense of luxury, which elevates this property to compete with big names like the Nam Hai (a newly minted Four Seasons).
WHERE IS IT? The drive to Da Nang airport is less than an hour from the hotel, and a free shuttle runs guests the five-minute drive from reception to the old town gates on a set schedule. While Hoi An has expanded as a backpacker, tourist destination, there is still loads of charm and this is a great base for those that want a trusted place to dine and enjoy spa treatments close to the action.
WHAT’S IT LIKE? Guests enter into a reception area with sit-down reception and plenty of lounge seating.
Guests are greeted with fresh fruit, cold towels, welcome cocktails, and other snacks while they complete arrival formalities. This type of personalized service continues throughout the stay; guests are given a brief tour of the grounds as they are walked to their room. The resort welcomes a good number of European, Japanese, and Korean guests, all of whom return over and over for the top-notch quality.
ROOM FACILITIES Guest rooms vary in size and views, but the new wing of accommodations where I stayed comes highly recommended. The rooms bear a colonial feeling with hardwood floors, mahogany furnishings, antique-style desks with easy-access power outlets, flat-screen TVs, and cabinets with hot water kettles, espresso machines, and minibars. Bottled water is provided daily. Bathrooms are open to the guest rooms, and have pedestal sinks with pump bottles dispensing aromatherapy toiletries produced locally. Other perks include toothbrush sets, deep soaking tubs, makeup mirrors, and tiled shower stalls with excellent water pressure. Beds in many rooms are wrapped with sheer linens for romantic flair while others have beautiful wooden headboards. All come with thick duvets and pillows, and the bedside power outlets prove just how new this addition is. Free wireless Internet works exceptionally well across most places around the property. Guest rooms benefit from furnished balconies with great views of the pool and gardens.
RESTAURANTS AND BARS Dining is an absolute highlight here. There are two restaurants. Red Bean is near reception and offers authentic Vietnamese and regional cuisine, and the prices are incredibly low (while common in the region, it’s not common at a hotel restaurant).
Service is from the heart, and the number of menu choices is expansive. My favorites were the green papaya salad and the pomelo salad, both of which came with sweet and salty flavors including fruit, peanuts, fish sauce, and cilantro. They were light and healthy, and I ended up eating them daily along with steaming bowls of pho, stir-fried noodles, and delicious coconut sorbet. The second restaurant, The Temple, is newer and serves fresh seafood dishes at dinnertime. It opens to the pool terrace, and guests can enjoy cocktails during happy hour until the restaurant opens. Both serve breakfast buffets with the one in the newer addition (reserved for guests staying in that section) also have the option for a la carte dishes. The cuisine here was an absolute highlight and perhaps my favorite part about visiting this beautiful historic city.
LEISURE FACILITIES There are two main pools here: one close to reception and a second, much larger pool in the new section. Both have their charms especially due to swaying palms and splashing fountains adding to the ambiance.
BUSINESS AND MEETING FACILITIES While the hotel does not focus on conference groups, it does offer a business center with Internet-equipped computers and printers. There is also the free wireless Internet signal available throughout the hotel.
By Ramsey Qubein