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Vietnam Hotels

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Ana Mandara Hue
An Hai Village
Thuan An , Phu Vang District
Vietnam
Tel: 84 54 398 3333
Fax: 84 8 6291 8144
info@epikurean.ws
epikurean.ws/ana-mandara-hue

This former imperial capital lures explorers of nineteenth-century architecture and of regional cuisines—and now, of blissful tranquillity. The Ana Mandara occupies a private expanse of golden sand along the South China Sea. The first beach resort to take advantage of an undeveloped coastline, this 78-room property is built around a rectangular granite pool on seven acres of palm and frangipani trees. At night, the only sounds are crashing waves and chirping crickets, though you're just a 20-minute drive from the city. Design cues are taken from vernacular Hue, with wide-eaved, red-tiled roofs edged in hand-carved wood, ornate recessed ceilings, and mahogany furniture. Platform and four-poster beds are dressed in wine-colored silk quilts; writing desks double as vanities. In the larger villas, long violet couches and low coffee tables set with petite porcelain teapots face a veranda; standard rooms have marble-tiled terraces and cushioned daybeds. Traditional music is regularly performed in the restaurant, which serves local specialties like beef grilled in betel leaves. But to take full advantage of the seaside location, request a seafood barbecue right on the beach.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Caravelle Hotel
19 Lam Son Square
Ho Chi Minh City
Vietnam
Tel: 84 8 823 4999
hotel@caravellehotel.vnn.vn
www.caravellehotel.com

In the heart of Ho Chi Minh, the Caravelle is one of the best-value luxury hotels in the city. Built by a French company in 1959, it became the hangout of foreign correspondents during the Vietnam War, fell into disrepair, and then underwent a magnificent renovation in 1998 (subsequently it was used as a film location for the 2002 adaptation of Graham Greene's The Quiet American). Business travelers are drawn by the Signature suites, with fax machines, computer hookups, broadband Internet access, and CD players—as well as the Club Vegas casino on the first floor. The hotel's 19 Restaurant, formerly the Port Orient Restaurant, serves international and Vietnamese cuisine (reservations are advised). The open-air Saigon Saigon bar has rattan shades and lazily rotating ceiling fans and retains something of the romance of 1930s Vietnam.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Church Hotel
9 Nha Tho Street
Hoan Kiem District
Hanoi
Vietnam
Tel: 84 4 928 8118
churchhotel@vnn.vn
www.churchhotel.com.vn

One of the few Hanoi hotels to live up to its boutique billing, this 26-room property appeals to independent travelers seeking style and location on a moderate budget. There's hardly a need for taxis, as Hoan Kiem Lake is barely a five-minute walk to the east while the neighbors along one-block-long Nha Tho Street operate some of Hanoi's best restaurants, cafés, and shops. The rooms are on the small side, and the aesthetic is almost monkish—hardwood floors; thick drapes; art-free, eggshell-white walls; mission-style furniture—but leavened with modern conveniences like AC and Internet access. The seventh floor has a small terrace, but the best views are to be had from the eighth-floor suite, where $70 buys you vistas of Hoan Kiem Lake and, to the west, the neo-Gothic St. Joseph Cathedral, consecrated in 1886. The front desk can arrange tours to any site in Hanoi, as well as organize onward transport or reservations. The hotel is extremely popular, so book well in advance.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Continental Hotel
132–134 Dong Khoi Street
District 1
Ho Chi Minh City
Vietnam
Tel: 84 8 829 9201
continental@hcm.vnn.vn
www.continental-saigon.com

If the walls here could talk, would they dish on Graham Greene—or the down-market decor of this famed-but-faded gem? Originally built in 1880, the Lam Son Square landmark has an incredible guest list: André Malraux stayed here, as did Greene, who took corner room 214 and set much of the intrigue of his novel, The Quiet American, at the Continental's terrace bar, a favorite watering hole for journalists and their sources. The bar is gone, sadly, replaced by La Dolce Vita café, yet the Continental's government-run operators seem content rest on their fading laurels. The large rooms are fitted with utilitarian furniture, dingy wall-to-wall carpeting, and outdated sinks and tubs. The breakfast buffet features slabs of that glorious proletariat cold cut, Spam. Even the free stationery is disappointing: A postcard of the hotel's exterior has been amateurishly doctored to include prewar automobiles. However, there are mitigating factors: a central location, Internet rates below $100, a helpful front desk—and a history that begs for a private-sector makeover. Request third-floor deluxe rooms overlooking the Municipal Theater, which have terrific views from the narrow, New Orleans–style wrought iron balconies.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
De Syloia
17A Tran Hung Dao Street
Hoan Kiem District
Hanoi
Vietnam
Tel: 84 4 824 5346
desyloia@hn.vnn.vn
www.desyloia.com

A ten-minute stroll south of Hoan Kiem Lake, this 33-room hotel appeals to travelers who want the feel of an urban boutique hotel in a neighborhood that hasn't been swallowed by tourism. The layout's a bit quirky—the narrow nine-story building vaults behind the facade of an old villa—but the quarters are spacious and the beds comfortable. The best rooms front Tran Hung Dao Street, with good views of the surrounding French Quarter. That's a blessing, as interior decor is simple and straightforward: clean-lined wooden furniture, white walls, soft lighting, an undersized original oil painting or two. All deluxe rooms and suites have whirlpool baths and free Internet access, but the musty rooftop minigym—with a single treadmill and a pair of stationary bikes—seems an afterthought. The very affordable rate includes an excellent breakfast, with omelets made to order in the Cay Cau restaurant, which also serves up tasty Vietnamese entrées in the evenings. English-speaking staff is helpful, while the maids don't miss a speck of dust—or even a misplaced passport, which was quickly delivered to the front desk.

$400 or more
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Evason Ana Mandara & Six Senses Spa—Nha Trang
Tran Phu Street
Nha Trang
Vietnam
Tel: 84 58 352 2222
reservations-nhatrang@sixsenses.com
www.sixsenses.com/evason-ana-mandara-nha-trang

It's no surprise Six Senses selected Nha Trang back in 1997 to be the site of Vietnam's first luxury resort. The three-mile arc of golden sand rests between lush green mountains and a blue-water bay visited by some of the country's sunniest (and least humid) weather. The 74 rooms are arranged in a villagelike setting of bungalows that delivers small-scale intimacy, and the six and a half acres of grounds keep the bustle of busy Tran Phu Street and the beach at bay. The rooms are models of romance and restraint, with clean lines, canopy beds, and private outdoor rain showers. Expect delicious small touches like a welcome-box of chocolates in sensual flavors such as ginger and passion fruit. Spa treatments take place at a pair of outdoor pavilions overlooking the sea and incorporate lemongrass and aloe from the on-site garden. Vietnamese-style massage, including toxin-removing cupping with special heated glasses, is also available. Free yoga and tai chi classes are held Monday and Friday mornings at an adjacent relaxation area overlooking a lotus-filled pond. Of course, there's an infinity pool, water-sports center, and on-site PADI-certified dive shop. The excellent staff can negotiate taxi charters or organize a shopping excursion via one of the hotel's cyclos. Avoid rooms 101–132, which are closest to the road; room 310 has the best views of the bay and islands.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Fusion Maia Da Nang
Truong Sa Street
Khue My Ward
Ngu Hanh Son District
Da Nang
Vietnam
Tel: 84 511 3967 999
Info-dn@fusion-resorts.com
fusionmaiadanang.com

While most new developments along My Khe beach, Danang's booming 19-mile-long stretch of sand, are towering eyesores, the Fusion Maia is low-key and chic. Its 87 single-story villas lie tucked behind low, russet-tinted laterite walls and interconnected by bamboo-lined stone paths. The spacious, L-shaped villas (the smallest at 540 square feet) are built to an open plan, with a plump beige cotton sofa at one end and a bathroom fitted with a gray terrazzo soaking tub, glass-encased rain shower, and handmade brass sinks at the other. A canopy bed swathed in gauzy caramel-hued cotton faces glass doors that open onto a plunge pool and garden shaded by ferns and palms (a steal, with room rates starting at $290). Smart design touches include a swivel TV that can be viewed from the bath or bed and built-in closets behind textured fabric framed in glass and dark wood. The extras here are noteworthy: Fusion Maia is the first hotel in Asia to offer unlimited spa treatments with the room rate, and at Five, the snazzy restaurant, decorated with tiered silk chandeliers and purple velvet chairs, the show kitchen delivers outstanding dishes like a duck-and-herb ravioli. There's also complimentary shuttle service to the nearby riverside town of Hoi An, famed for its well-preserved shophouses and lantern-lit lanes.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Hilton Hanoi Opera
1 Le Thanh Tong
Hanoi
Vietnam
Tel: 84 4 933 0500
hanoi@hilton.com
www.hanoi.hilton.com

This luxurious property, adjacent to the Opera House, has an impressive faux-colonial exterior and a sumptuous lobby. The hotel offers five-star accommodation at a great price. The 269 rooms have all mod cons, including satellite TV and data ports. Those on the executive floor have private check-in and a lounge with bar and snacks. Guests on holiday will appreciate the in-house tour services and concierge. The swanky Chinese restaurant, Turtle's Poem, offers fine dim sum, as well as a gargantuan Sunday brunch. The Café Opera serves fancy sandwiches and pastries, and JJ's Sports Bar is a great place for a game of pool.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
Hotel Nikko Hanoi
84 Tran Nhan Tong
Hanoi
Vietnam
Tel: 84 4 822 3535
Fax: 84 4 822 3555
www.hotelnikkohanoi.com.vn

This hotel is Japanese owned and feels it, with a minimalist design and a pocket-size Japanese garden next to the light-filled lobby. The rooms are simple but fairly luxurious. Popular with visitors from Japan as well as business travelers, the 15-story hotel has a gym that is much better than most hotel fitness facilities, as well as a business center. The on-site restaurants include Tao-Li, a contemporary Cantonese restaurant, and Benkay, an excellent, if pricey sushi bar. The hotel's French restaurant, La Brasserie, serves a daily buffet breakfast that is included in the room rate. The hotel is in the center of the city and is a 40-minute drive from the airport.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Hotel Saigon Morin
30 Le Loi Street
Hue
Vietnam
Tel: 84 54 823 526
sgmorin@dng.vnn.vn
www.morinhotel.com.vn

The landmark Hotel Saigon Morin has stood since 1901 on the banks of the Perfume River through war, flood, and typhoon. Remodeled a decade ago and expanded last year, the practical-minded 184-room hotel offers easy access to the Citadel from Truong Tien Bridge, which is just across Le Loi Street. Supersized second-floor rooms in the original wing have 13-foot ceilings and Continental-style furnishings such as cabriole chairs, beds with padded headboards, and thick drapes (though they unfortunately don't quite muffle the traffic noise outside). The quietest quarters, rooms 140–168, are in the rear of the hotel. A peaceful inner courtyard holds a kidney-shaped swimming pool and a tree-shaded café with Parisian-style wrought iron furniture. Hotel service is attentive, from the rose-petal-strewing housekeepers to maintenance workers who arrive moments after a glitch is reported. The four-star amenities also include a tour service, currency exchange, beauty salon, and free lobby Wi-Fi. And breakfast might be the longest buffet in Vietnam: Platters of mango and pomelo, croissants and cheese, and banh khoai (steamed rice paper pancakes) stretch at least 30 yards.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
InterContinental Asiana Saigon
39 Le Duan Boulevard
District 1
Ho Chi Minh City
Vietnam
Tel: 800 496 7621
Tel: 84 8 3520 9999
Fax: 84 8 3520 9955
www.intercontinental.com/intercontinental/en/gb/locations/overview/hochiminhcity

Despite an uninspiring aluminum-and-glass exterior, the 21-story, 305-room InterContinental Asiana Saigon is a solid business hotel that isn't missing out on the bold modernization that's reshaping this city. In the lobby, a trio of 18-foot-long silk tube lamps dangle above fresh white orchids on a dark wood table, just one of many appealing decorative elements scattered throughout the property. The first luxury hotel to open in central Ho Chi Minh City in the last four years, the Asiana Saigon's modest palette of beige, sage green, and pale orange is set off by lively flourishes and textures, such as wavy walls made of bent bamboo. In the rooms, glass desks, white leather loungers, and iPod docks make the space multi-functional and work-friendly, while the lusciously soft beds are pure pleasure. Room decor is minimal, but the sliding wall partition made of twisted twigs that leads to the bathroom is a pretty touch. Each of the three restaurants and two bars oozes with character, especially the boudoir-like bar where guests lounge on aubergine velvet daybeds. Staff, though professional and prompt, are overly stiff and could stand to loosen up.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
InterContinental Hanoi Westlake
1A Nghi Tam
Tay Ho
Hanoi
Vietnam
Tel: 84 4 270 8888
www.ichotelsgroup.com/h/d/ic/1/en/hotel/hanhb

Sublime settings among city hotels are rare, and none outdoes this site: Overlooking the 800-year-old Golden Lotus Pagoda on Hanoi's largest lake, it is ten minutes by car from the city's newly hip historic center (an excellent city map is presented along with your room key). The 359 stylish guest rooms feature headboards crafted from intricate hill tribe textiles, funky birdcage-inspired bedside lamps, and bathrooms equipped with powerful showers and double sinks. Most standard rooms offer lake views; on the downside, they suffer from thin walls that fail to block out occasional hallway noise. The five on-site restaurants and bars will more than satisfy anyone too rushed to explore Hanoi's rich and diverse dining scene. Café du Lac stands out here for authentic French brasserie fare, as does the Sunset Bar, poised on its own island in the lake and accessible by a romantic torch-lit bridge.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
La Residence Hotel & Spa
5 Le Loi Street
Hue
Vietnam
Tel: 84 54 837 475
la-residence-hue.com

La Résidence was the Jazz Age home of French envoys to the royal court, and the grandeur of the Art Deco building must have made the emperors feel their wooden palace was très frumpy. Today, the updated La Résidence is easily the poshest address in Hue, appealing to diplomats, independent travelers, and—say, isn't that Colin Farrell in the bar? The boutique property's 122 rooms and suites sustain the period glamour with hardwood floors, canopy beds, and porcelain washstands. The architects may have taken the retro realism a tad too far, however: The rooms are short on electrical outlets to power all the gadgetry that modern travelers require. Just steps from the Perfume River, an infinity swimming pool delivers wide-angle views of the Citadel. Le Parfum restaurant maintains a détente between classic Continental fare like veal Rossini and Vietnamese entrées like bo luc lac (marinated beef with peppers and onions baked in a bamboo tube). An in-house travel desk can arrange cooking classes, sunset dinner cruises on the Perfume River, or guided tours of the Citadel and royal tombs. Upon your return, the housekeeping elves will have rehung every towel and washcloth. It's good to be the king, or at least an envoy, for a day.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
La Veranda Resort
Tran Hung Dao Street
Duong Dong , Phu Quoc
Vietnam
Tel: 84 77 982 988
Tel: 800 221 4542
laverandaresort.com

This new 43-room hotel is spearheading the transformation of Phu Quoc, the largest island off the country's southwestern coast, from backpacker's bolt-hole to hot upmarket beach destination. This intimate cluster of custard-yellow colonial-style bungalows is centered around a cobalt-blue–tiled pool and surrounded by frangipani, hibiscus, and other flowering tropical plants. (If you prefer, you can cast up on the sands of the full-service beach, which is dotted with straw-thatched parasols and lapped by the bath-warm water.) The charming rooms, which were decorated by the owner, have high ceilings and locally made teak furniture inspired by 1920s Indochine furniture. Ignore the Western offerings at the restaurant in favor of the Vietnamese dishes that feature the two products for which Phu Quoc is best known—peppercorns and nuoc mam, the fermented fish sauce that's the ketchup of Vietnam. A small spa offers massages and facials.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Life Heritage Resort Hoi An
1 Pham Hong Thai Street
Hoi An
Vietnam
Tel: 84 510 391 4555
hoian@life-resorts.com
www.life-resorts.com

Built in harmony with a riverfront block of colonnaded French-era buildings, the colonial-style Life Heritage Resort is Hoi An's best in-town hotel option. Its 94 large rooms mix Western touches with Eastern art like hill-tribe textile wall hangings. A large sitting area, oversize bathtub, and high ceilings give a sense of space, but the basic work desk and flimsy sliding closet doors aren't quite up to style code. On the plus side, the rooms have high-speed Internet access, safes, and AC, as well as private outdoor porches on the sun-drenched gallery. Second-floor rooms 201–209 have the choicest views of the Thu Bon River. Open-air Senses Restaurant, which serves up fine panoramas and a smorgasbord with omelet and pho stations, is a good bet for breakfast before exploring the old quarter, just a five-minute walk away. After reaching cultural overload, splash around the small infinity pool, relax with an affordable spa session ($35 for a one-hour deep-tissue massage), or take the complimentary shuttle to Cua Dai Beach. Life Heritage also offers free Vietnamese-language instruction, silk lantern-making sessions, and—just in time for Saturday happy hour—a cocktail-making class. Nguyen Thi Kim Lien and the rest of the highly capable front-desk staff can organize any excursion, change currency, and book train tickets. Bear in mind the normally sluggish Thu Bon River can rise dramatically during the monsoon, especially in October and November, and cause enough flooding for the resort to temporarily close.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Majestic Hotel
1 Dong Khoi Street
District 1
Ho Chi Minh City
Vietnam
Tel: 84 8 829 5517
majestic@majesticsaigon.com.vn
www.majesticsaigon.com.vn

Opened in 1925, the Majestic Hotel retains a retro glamour, with wooden louvers, original hardwood floors, and old-fashioned bathroom fixtures. The guest list here has included François Mitterrand and Catherine Deneuve, who stayed in room 502 while filming Indochine. In 2003, a 53-room addition, done in the same style as the original block, brought the inventory to 175 rooms. However, the older (or "colonial") rooms, which have 13-foot-high ceilings, seem more open, especially those with river views. While the Majestic refreshed its look in 2007 with new paint and linens, the government-owned enterprise still misses on a few points, like furniture (clunky) and showers (temperamental). However, the riverfront location at the foot of Dong Khoi Street is unrivaled. Tackle the huge buffet breakfast on the fifth-floor terrace and watch the morning bustle as the streets fill with scooters and ferries swarm across the Saigon River. At night, the terrace holds the Breeze Sky Bar, an ideal base for happy hour.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Melia Hanoi
44B Ly Thuong Kiet St.
Hanoi
Vietnam
Tel: 84 4 934 3343
melia.hanoi@solmellia.com
www.meliahanoi.com

The likes of Princess Anne of the United Kingdom and members of the Brunei royal family have rested their crowned heads in this slick, 22-story hotel. There's a heliport on its roof, so guests can arrive in style, and the hotel has the largest ballroom in Vietnam (with a capacity of 1,200). The Art Deco rooms are large and pleasant, with luxurious bathrooms, minibars, and satellite TV. The high-rise hotel may be something of an eyesore on the Hanoi skyline, but its height guarantees guests a glorious view. There are two restaurants: El Patio, serving international cuisine, and Lotus, offering Thai and Chinese food. Melia is centrally located in the heart of Hanoi's business district, within walking distance of Hoan Kiem.

$400 or more
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
The Nam Hai
Ha My Beach
Hoi An
Vietnam
Tel: 84 510 940 000
www.ghmluxuryhotels.com/NamHai.htm

With its late-2006 debut, the design-driven Nam Hai instantly assumed the mantle of Vietnam's most elegant resort. You enter through a gracious, open-air pavilion that spills onto a trio of tiered pools descending to a mile-long beach with views of the Cham Islands. All 60 villas and most of the 40 pool villas, which range from one to five bedrooms, have water views. Inside, Parisian architect Reda Amalou and Indonesian interior designer Jaya Ibrahim have reimagined the classic Vietnamese house, with a central king-size platform bed on a dais surrounded by amenities, including a flat-screen TV and an eggshell lacquered bathtub. Dock the iPod—which has a prerecorded selection of chill-out music—part the curtains, and drink in the immaculate sands, which the grounds crew seems to groom grain by grain. Rip currents can make swimming tricky, but the consolation is an Olympic-size infinity pool. Chase a dip with complimentary green-tea-and-mint facial mist, then rinse off under your villa's private outdoor rain shower. Other features include a showstopping restaurant specializing in Vietnamese and Indian cuisine, a high-caliber gym, a spa with eight treatment pavilions perched over a lotus-filled lagoon, and a gallery with paintings by Bui Huu Hung and other nationally acclaimed artists. A shuttle operates five times a day to Hoi An, just six miles away, but even its allure may not be enough to pry you from your villa.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Park Hyatt Saigon
2 Lam Son Square
Ho Chi Minh City
Vietnam
Tel: 84 8 824 1234
saigon.park@hyattintl.com
www.saigon.park.hyatt.com

The pale-yellow colonial-style Park Hyatt is a relatively new competitor in the five-star-hotel category (it opened in summer 2005). The 259 rooms and suites have marble-tiled bathrooms and all the mod cons, including flat-screen satellite TVs and broadband Internet access. There's a 60-foot outdoor pool surrounded by a pretty landscaped garden, and the nine Park Deluxe rooms have direct pool deck access and private terraces. The hotel's restaurants include Square One, a stylish Vietnamese and Western restaurant with an outdoor dining area. The hotel is centrally located at Lam Son Square, near the Opera House downtown and within walking distance of the main tourist attractions.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Pilgrimage Village
130 Minh Mang Road
Hue
Vietnam
Tel: 84 5 488 5461
info@pilgrimagevillage.com
www.pilgrimagevillage.com

Set in the hills south of Hue amid Nguyen dynasty tombs, the great-value Pilgrimage Village is a rural refuge from the city's traffic and touts. Solidly built of brick and laterite stone, the villas are a nod to ancient Cham temples. The lush grounds, rustic setting, and relative seclusion also encourage romance: Twenty of the 99 rooms are honeymoon bungalows with hardwood floors, canopy beds, private pools, and butler service. Bungalows 153–159 overlook the man-made Lotus Lake and are the quietest. The on-site Vedana Spa has a full menu of treatments, including a one-hour "four hands" massage with two masseuses. Though the resort feels worlds away from the city, a free shuttle connects you to Hue in a mere ten minutes. The resort also rents bikes for $2 a day, a pleasant way to explore the rolling, wooded countryside.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Rex Hotel
141 Nguyen Hue Boulevard
District 1
Ho Chi Minh City
Vietnam
Tel: 84 8 829 2185
rexhotel@hcm.vnn.vn
www.rexhotelvietnam.com

The best of Saigontourist's holdings, this business traveler's favorite offers solid, albeit small, rooms with less kitsch than the Majestic and, in the rattan furniture, more style than the Continental. In addition, the Rex can claim a colorful history: The nation's reunification was announced in the hotel's conference room, which was also the site of the U.S. military's media briefings, known to many a jaded journalist as "The Five O'Clock Follies." The 217-room hotel is in the midst of a multimillion-dollar expansion. A new casino, the Bingo Club, operates on the first floor, while the 180-seat Royal Court restaurant features live traditional music and the spicy food of central Vietnam. The location, just south of the Hotel de Ville, is ideal for shopping. And the fifth-floor outdoor bar and restaurant has topiary animals, live music, and bird's-eye views of downtown.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Sandy Beach Resort
255 Huyen Tran Cong Chua Street
Da Nang
Vietnam
Tel: 84 511 3836 216
info@sandybeachdanang.com
www.sandybeachdanang.com

The Soviet-style lines of the '80s-era buildings may seem dated, but Sandy Beach Resort is by far the best value along rapidly developing China Beach. For starters, it's situated at Non Nuoc, the still-quiet midsection of the 20-mile-long strand. Out back are five vaulting limestone outcrops collectively known as the Marble Mountains. In front, rolling dunes give way to white sand lapped by gentle waves and punctuated by thatched-roof shelters. The pool staff provides free sea kayaks and canoes for oceanic exploration. After you work up an appetite, you can relax at the China Beach Grill over comfort food like chicken wraps, pizza, and fried spring rolls. At night, a Filipino band turns up the reverb and gamely covers everything from Beyoncé to Bob Marley. The 119 rooms, which are decorated in Holiday Inn Functional, appeal to a colorful mix of Euro families and American vets revisiting their old stomping ground. There are also perks—complimentary Internet in the lobby, a free daily shuttle to both Da Nang and Hoi An, and helpful staff that quickly organize everything from restaurant reservations to outgoing faxes—not found at your average budget hotel.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Sheraton Saigon Hotel and Towers
88 Dong Khoi Street
Ho Chi Minh City
Vietnam
Tel: 84 8 827 2828
sheratonsaigon@sheraton.com
www.sheraton.com/saigon

The service and attention to detail at this hotel are outstanding, with aromatherapy scents wafting from the air-conditioning on the landings. The 374 spacious rooms and suites have contemporary decor, marble bathrooms, and mod cons like Internet access (for a fee) and satellite TV. Ask for a city-facing room, and you should get a small balcony and a great view of the city (on the other side of the hotel you'll be looking right into the adjacent Towers rooms). Dining options include Li Bai, a superb Chinese restaurant, and the rooftop Level 23 Signature Restaurant. Patrons can boogie the night away at the hip wine bar/club attached. The hotel is in walking distance of tourist sites such as the Opera House.

$400 or more
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Six Senses Con Dao
Dat Doc Beach
Con Dao
Vietnam
Tel: 84 64 3831 222
reservations-condao@sixsenses.com
www.sixsenses.com/SixSensesConDao/

Leave it to the Six Senses chain, known for bringing its contemporary eco-luxe designs to off-the-radar spots, to discover this remote island gem and its empty, white sand beaches and coral-rich aquamarine waters. Nestled into the dunes along a mile-long, crescent-shaped beach and backed by verdant hills, this 50-villa retreat literally shields guests from the outside world. Linked by sandy paths and separated by split bamboo partitions, villas are constructed from locally sourced tropical hardwood and topped with dramatically sloping flat roofs. Shaded by indigenous palms and feathery casuarinas, they wow without distracting from the awe-inspiring setting. The villas are light and airy, with walls, ceilings, beds, and vanities made of blond untreated wood; closets fronted by woven bamboo doors and rope handles; and white terrazzo flooring and bathtubs. Other than the oversized lime-green and tangerine cotton pillows on the daybeds, eye-popping color comes from Con Dao itself: To the front, a private saltwater pool seems to melt into the sea's countless shades of turquoise, and out back, emerald-green banana trees edge the alfresco rain shower. The sophisticated Vietnamese and Mediterranean fare at the two restaurants—one with upscale "street" food—is organic and local where possible, while the on-call butlers and earnest staff leave guests with little to worry about beyond choosing their next vintage.

$400 or more
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Six Senses Hideaway Ninh Van Bay
Ninh Van Bay
Nha Trang
Vietnam
Tel: 84 58 728 222
reservations-ninhvan@sixsenses.com
www.sixsenses.com/six-senses-hideaway-ninh-van-bay

It may be Vietnam's most expensive resort to date, but don't expect high-tech gadgetry and marble bathrooms. Instead, organic fabrics and coconut fixtures accessorize the 55 thatch-roofed huts set around coral-rich Ninh Van Bay. Upper floors are outfitted with homey wooden dining tables and chairs as well as pillow-strewn daybeds ideal for star- and sunset-gazing. Downstairs, mosquito nets cocoon the funky bamboo beds, and tree-stump footpaths lead to the double-headed exterior showers. The scarcity of outdoor lights makes nighttime navigation a challenge, and the helpfulness of the personal butlers is hampered by their limited English. But with sea-facing private plunge pools and nonstop activities, including dives, the Hideaway feels like sleepaway camp for grown-ups, albeit one with a French chef and a top-notch spa.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Sofitel Metropole Hanoi
15 Ngo Quyen Street
Hoan Kiem District
Hanoi
Vietnam
Tel: 84 4 3826 6919
sofitelhanoi@hn.vnn.vn
www.sofitel.com/sofitel/fichehotel/gb/sof/1555/fiche_hotel.shtml

Despite fierce competition from new luxury rivals, the ideally located Metropole remains the most prestigious address in Hanoi for diplomats, celebrities, and an increasing number of high-end travelers. Opened in 1901 in the heart of the French Quarter, the Metropole has an illustrious history—past guests include Charlie Chaplin (on his honeymoon), Jane Fonda, and Jacques Chirac. With completion in early 2008 of a new wing and conversion of an adjacent office block, the grand hotel more than tripled its size, to 363 rooms. Every room has broadband Internet, an LCD television, and a DVD player. The new digs also have a business center, library, and 24-hour butler service on the Club Floor. Further pampering will soon be available at a new spa and fitness center. Old-fashioned romantics may prefer the smaller rooms in the original Colonial Wing, which have hardwood floors, period furniture, and bamboo wall coverings—though the traffic outside on busy Ngo Quyen Street can reduce the charm. The solution? Join the fray in the hotel's vintage ride, a chauffeur-driven 1953 French Citroën—the sanest, most stylish way to tour the city or go on a shopping spree. Half- and full-day cooking classes include market tours and lunch. Dine in at one of the in-house restaurants: Spices Garden serves upmarket Vietnamese fare, and Le Beaulieu specializes in classic French cuisine. The hotel also has three bars, including the Met Pub, which usually has live music.

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.