Concierge.com's insider take:
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 iPodwhich has a prerecorded selection of chill-out musicpart 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.
From the editors of Condé Nast Traveler:
The 100-villa Nam Hai combines high design with stunning views of the breakers rolling in from the Gulf of Tonkin. The hotel's centerpiece, a sequence of three huge pools that step down to the sea, divides the terra-cotta tile-roofed cottages into two different camps: ocean villas and the larger pool villas, each of which has its own plunge pool. Paris-based architect Reda Amalou and interior decorator Jaya Ibrahim's guest rooms—all buffed gray stone floors and a central living platform of dark-stained teak—encourage a Zen-like serenity. Espresso machines and preloaded iPods are a welcome touch, but there are no reading lights by the bed, a curious lapse. Baths have indoor and outdoor showers and Acqua di Parma toiletries. The hotel's public spaces are magnificent, including the main restaurant and a library. The Nam Hai spa is included among the 2007 Hot List Spas.2007 Hot List
When to go: March through April and September through October are best for the beach.
Which room to book: Villas 4050 and 4070 offer good sea views and easy access to the resort's facilities.
Amenities: 24-hour Room Service, Bar/lounge, Beach, Gym, PoolSubscribe now to Condé Nast Traveler for just $1 an issue! ›