Top 7 Honeymoon Spots in Vietnam

By: Aleksandr Smechov

We list the best of the best for honeymoon destinations in Vietnam. Any of the luxury resorts below are also great to celebrate wedding anniversaries or vow renewals.

The term “honeymoon” sprouted sometime in the 1500s, and meant the wavering affection (honey) of a married couple was analogous to the periodic phases of the moon. Later, the term came to mean the span of time after the wedding signifying the “indefinite period of tenderness and pleasure experienced by a newlywed couple.” Again, the moon referred to the marriage’s predilection to be “no sooner full than it begins to wane.”

Etymologically a half bittersweet, half cynical term, the word grew into its more optimistic counterpart during the Belle Epoque, the 40-year period in European history characterized by the burst of artistic endeavors, scientific discoveries and new technology.

The modern interpretation has come to mean plunking down serious cash for an exotic heaven-on-earth where you’re treated like Saudi royalty. So why not choose the best of the best, in one of most affordable honeymoon destinations on earth? Vietnam’s rich flora, kind smiles and great food make it a great choice to spend the sweetest epoch of your marriage.

Ana Mandara Dalat Honeymoon

Who is it for: The older couple; fans of woodland solitude and cool weather

Why it’s an ideal honeymoon spot: This is as authentic as it gets in Dalat. While the city has its fair share of kitsch (eerie swan paddle boats, anyone?),  Ana Mandara has managed to hold on with dear life to the most romantic aspects of the 1930s, when weary French officials retreated to the pine-covered highlands for some seriously meditative R&R.

Since these were personal villas, each room has its own unique furniture setup, layout and ambiance. The wooden floors, antiquated furniture and canopied beds makes your dwelling feel like a secret forest cabin you and your lover are using to escape from the tumultuous world outside. Except instead of broken plumbing and wild animals you get a heated pool, clawfoot bathtub, rain shower and panoramic views of a colorful Franco-Vietnamese city.

How long should I stay: Three days and two nights should be enough time to explore the grounds and try the excellent breakfast buffet, get a massage at La Cochinchine spa, and head down and explore the city center.

Offers: Being the city of fatalistic lovers (most of Dalat’s lore ends in a Romeo and Juliet scenario), much of Dalat is geared towards honeymooners. Ana Mandara is no exception, and offers a really well put together package that includes one night in a Villa Room, daily breakfast, round-trip airport transfers, a city tour by vintage car, a candle-lit dinner, an hour long body massage and further discounts for just VND 3.9 million per person. Not bad at all. City Pass also offers a 30% off voucher.

Six Senses Con Dao Honeymoon

Who is it for: Anyone who can afford it

Why it’s an ideal honeymoon spot: This is Brad and Angelina’s turf (well… they stayed there once in 2011, but it was big news in the tabloids). It’s a 45-minute flight by charter flight that takes you directly from Ho Chi Minh City to Con Dao Island, where a Mercedes van picks you up and drops you off at Six Senses.

You are taken to what might arguably be one of the best beaches in Vietnam. The sand is flat, firm and stretches out for a few kilometers. The water is beautiful and snorkel-worthy. The private villas all come with an infinity pool and butler. Movies are projected nightly in the open air, the F&B is excellent and the service is meticulously geared towards pleasing literally every need. Understandable considering you’re paying around VND 12 million per room. But for that you get stuff like a pre-check-in checklist offering anything you might need on the house, from razors to nail clippers to scented pillows to snorkeling gear, and even the type of music you want playing upon entering your private villa for the first time.

The island is nice, and you can visit a prison (not very romantic but fascinating nonetheless), snorkel or dive in the clear waters (this is Vietnam’s best diving spot), hike for hours at a national park, or rent a catamaran and languidly paddle about the sea. But keep in mind shis is the kind of place where you indulge in the ambiance of the resort, have fun with your large bed and politely ask your smiling butler to get you those nail clippers.

How long should you stay: you’re spending a few hundred just on the charter flight there, so might as well stay three or four nights before you head back. This is a premier honeymoon destination – you’re going to want to stay as much as you can reasonably afford.

Offers: While there are no honeymooner-centric packages, they do offer discounts ranging from 10% to 28% for early, non-flexible and extended stays.

Princess D'Annam Honeymoon

Who is it for: Honeymooners with kids; boutique hotel lovers

Why it’s an ideal honeymoon spot: Not too far from Phan Thiet, Princess is a 3-5 hour drive from Ho Chi Minh City, making it the closest beachfront resort on the list. The hotel is sleek, private and remote. You get your own villa, 24-hour service and some pretty sites: the East Sea, canyons, dunes and a nearby village where you can get some local fruit and coffee for cheap.

Princess has an excellent kids club, and provides adults some decent entertainment like cooking classes, football, fishing, karaoke, surfing and other fun diversions. If you’re tugging along some little ones for the “familymoon,” Princess is probably the best option on the list. And it’s on the lower end of the luxury price spectrum (around VND 5 million for a private villa at a luxury boutique resort reasonable).

How long should you stay: Three to four nights should do it. It’s a small, relatively secluded area, so you might want to make some taxi trips to Phan Thiet to check out the city, or just explore the surrounding area. The resort is very well-constructed, well-maintained and quite beautiful overall, and should do well if you only stay there the entire time.

Offers: Citypass offers a 25% off voucher.

Bassac Cruises Honeymoon

Who is it for: The older couple; river cruise lovers

Why it’s an ideal honeymoon spot: You don’t typically imagine barges floating along rural Vietnam as romantic. Bassac turns the notion on its head. You get on one of three fully-equipped boats constructed in the style of a traditional rice barge, traveling overnight from Can Tho to Cai Be. And when we say fully equipped, we mean it. Soundproofed cabins for lengthy “bed testing,” AC, hot and cold water, three inclusive meals with superb food and knowledgeable staff that can answer your questions about the Mekong Delta or Vietnam. It’s quite pampering for such a rustic context, but not distastefully extravagant. Costly, but well worth it.

The project is headed by French engineer Benoit, whose meticulous attention to details is unprecedented. Every aspect of the boat is made to take you away from daily stress and place you in a serene, culturally-conscious environment. You float by rice fields, sugar canes, a floating market, and the Delta’s various flora. You see the difficult life of farmers and reconsider your own situation. It’s quite eye-opening. And it’s quite romantic.

How long should you stay: The set overnight itinerary should be enough time to experience riverfront life in the Mekong, and indulge in the barge’s services.

Offers: City Pass offers a 15% off voucher.

Evason Ana Mandara Nha Trang

Who is it for: Beachfront lovers; couples who want to be close to the action

Why it’s an ideal spot for a honeymoon, a wedding anniversary or a vow renowal trip: Don’t confuse this one for Ana Mandara Dalat mentioned earlier – it’s quite different in style. This one is for the beach lovers who don’t want to stray too far from the busiest coastal city in Vietnam. It’s also the only resort actually situated on the beach in Nha Trang, instead of sitting across the road.

It’s a great hideaway, despite its proximity to the city. The noise levels are sufficiently low, and the gardens, the dedicated beachfront and the sleek pools all magnify the serenity. Ana also features one of the best breakfasts you’ll find in the region. If you’re the fancy-dinner-by-the-pier type, the resort can set up a table at the end of long wooden pier, which is quite nice when the starts begin to show face.

On a side note, the resort is managed by Six Senses, known for their world-class spa facilities. Do yourself a favor and visit the spa if you’re staying here.

How long should you stay: Two or three nights should be sufficient if you’re just there for the resort. If you want to explore Nha Trang – and the city has a good deal of landmarks and restaurants to discover – you may want to opt for up to a week. With a voucher or 3rd party site, you can get each night for under VND 5 million for lower end rooms and around twice that for more luxurious options.

Offers: The Six Senses website is featuring a honeymoon package for three nights that includes airport transfer, a bottle of sparkling wine, chocolate and tea, fresh fruit on arrival, and a departure gift. You also get your room set-up for the honeymoon, a sunset cruise for two complete with champagne on the deck, a 50-minute massage in a couple room, and a three course dinner on the beach, with the option to create your own signature menu. City Pass also offers a 30% off voucher.

The Nam Hai Honeymoon

Who is it for: Luxury-minded older crowd not into loud partying, but still looking for something sleek and sexy to slip into

Why it’s an ideal honeymoon spot: The Nam Hai has five bubbles on TripAdvisor. And that’s with over 1,200 reviews. It’s difficult not to rehash what’s already been said. But based on our time there, here’s a few relatively objective observations: the rooms are very well decorated. Sleek, sensual and with a nice view of the beach meters away. Lounging by the pools is idyllic, and the beach sand is spotless. It is easily one of the best hotel in Vietnam.

Service in general is top class, as is the steep price (US$ 500 and up). Every private villa gets a butler who obliges your every whim. Little details like staff using electric buggies and bicycles to lessen the noise and pollution of the resort push The Nam Hai over the edge and into veritable 5-star territory. They’re genuinely inclined to give you a world-class treatment.

On a side note, the resort is close to Hoi An, a quaint city that’s quite romantic. It’s 15 minutes by car and worth a stroll through.

How long should you stay: At least two nights. If you can expend for more, go for it. Two nights to a week is best.

Offers: They have a Romance in Style package running until the end of 2015. It includes airport transfer, a welcome bottle of champagne, a private BBQ dinner, a love bath ceremony and special honeymoon amenities and souvenir. City Pass also offers a 15% off voucher.

An Lam Saigon River

Who is it for: jungle paradise lovers; riverside enthusiasts

Why it’s an ideal honeymoon spot: There’s nothing quite like it in Vietnam. A boutique resort with only 19 villas, An Lam Saigon River is only a few years old, but it’s already butting heads against superstars like The Nam Hai and Six Senses.

You begin with a 20-minute boat ride along the Saigon River. It’s pretty unassuming until you approach the smiling staff greeting you with welcome drinks along a remote, jungle-like pier. Palms, bamboo and other tropical flora grow naturally around the grounds. The resort itself is small, but the owner, a polymath of sorts, single-handedly designed the 19 unique villas himself, which are worlds of their own.

Each villa is a fusion of the best elements taken from luxury coastal hotels, a sort of beautiful hodgepodge that works synergistically to literally uplift you as you walk into the room. Each room, despite being wholly different from the next, is arranged to produce a seamless flow, an organic feel that meshes with the wilderness outside. It’s modish, it’s wild and it’s romantic, no matter what villa you stay in.

How long should you stay: Two nights minimum are a must. A day lounging around your room, the pool, the restaurant or anywhere else on the grounds is a wholly different experience than any hotel in the country can provide.

Offers: There are no offers at present.

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Mercure debuts in Hai Phong, Largest Port in Northeastern Vietnam

By: City Pass Guide

Mercure Hotels & Resorts has announced the opening of its first midscale property housed in a 28-storey mixed-use development in northeastern Vietnam. Located in the central business district, Mercure Hai Phong is the tallest building in the city and is located within SHP Plaza shopping centre.

Mercure Hai Phong

Ideal for both short-term and long-term stays, Mercure Hai Phong boasts 176 spacious guest rooms and suites as well as 57 one to three-bedroom serviced apartments perfect for short term and long term stays. ItsDeluxe Suite features a separate living room while the Presidential Suite offers a panoramic view of the city.

“Whether in the heart of a bustling city or nestled amidst tranquil mountain scenery, Mercure offers unforgettable stays and authentic experiences. The opening of Mercure Hai Phong offers guests a great city centre location where they can explore nearby attractions, including Lach Tray football stadium and Lach Tray Street and enjoy a range of street food options to live like a local”, said Mr. Patrick Basset, Chief Operating Officer for AccorHotels Upper Southeast and Northeast Asia.

Mercure Hai Phong

Dining options include two restaurants and three bars. The all-day dining Flame Grill & Bar, located on the 6th floor of the hotel, serves the best of international and local flavours with à la carte and buffet menu choices, while Cuppa Café offers a selection of special coffee and tea brews with daily fresh bakes. The first roof bar in the city that overlooks the skyline of Hai Phong on the 28th floor, Cloud28 Sky Bar & Lounge offers a range of special signature cocktail concoctions, wines, mocktails and light snacks. Guests staying on the 25th to 27th floors of the hotel can enjoy breakfast, evening cocktails and complimentary access to the meeting rooms at the Privilege Lounge.

For pampering massages and facials to rejuvenate the body and soul, Bloom Spa offers a range of signature herbal bath and aromatherapy treatments. Other leisure facilities include a 24-hour gym and an outdoor infinity pool. For meetings, events and weddings, the hotel boasts six meeting rooms all equipped with modern technology, including the city’s largest grand ballroom that can cater for up to 380guests.

“We are excited to the first midscale hotel in Hai Phong. Travellers coming to the city can take part in the festivities that take place all year round or climb the rocks and visit the caves and grottoes of Cat Ba and Voi Mountain”, said Mr. Marcus Wirsching, General Manager of Mercure Hai Phong.

With over 790 hotels located in 63 countries, each Mercure offers its own style and personality with a classical modern twist and contemporary design decor that creates an authentic and inspiring experience. Whether by the sea, in the city or up in the mountains, each stay at a Mercure hotel is a new experience whether it’s in Indonesia, Poland, The Netherlands, Austria or France.

Enjoy a Superior Room stay at VND 2,290,000++ with breakfast for one from 8 November to 8 December, 2018. Accor Plus members enjoy a rate of VND 1,504,800++ per night for a Superior Room.

For reservations, please email H9183@accor.com, call +84 225 3 240 999 or visit www.mercurehaiphong.com or www.accorhotels.com for more information.

With Mercure, AccorHotels offers hotels that are all different and locally inspired.

Mercure is the only mid-scale hotel brand that combines the strength of an international network with a strong quality commitment and the warm experience of hotels that are rooted in their local community. Mercure hotels are managed by enthusiastic hoteliers and welcome business and leisure travelers across the world. Mercure has over 790 hotels in 63 countries. They are ideally located in city centres, by the sea or in the mountains.

AccorHotels is a world-leading travel & lifestyle group and digital innovator offering unique experiences in more than 4,600 hotels, resorts and residences, as well as in over 10,000 of the finest private homes around the globe.

Image source: Mercure Hotels & Resorts


Fusion To Open 10 Hotels and 1,385 Hotel Rooms Across Vietnam

By: City Pass Guide

The wellness-inspired hotel group will launch new brands and expand into emerging destinations

Fusion is substantially expanding its Vietnam’s presence by tripling the number of properties in the Land of the Blue Dragon. Over the next three years, the pioneering wellness lodging specialists will launch 10 new hotels and resorts, representing 1,385 rooms and private villas, suites, and apartments. Expanding into exciting emerging markets, the brand’s new properties will open in developing destinations that span the length of the country.

“We see a tremendous opportunity to expand Fusion’s presence in the country,” explained Peter Meyer, chief executive officer of Fusion. “Recognising that there are so many beautiful, and largely undeveloped destinations in Vietnam.”

Fusion Suites Vung Tau, located in the weekend getaway beach destination near Saigon, is set to welcome guests from early 2020. This chic new-build features 100 apartments and 71 suites, a spa with 12-double bed treatment rooms, aerial yoga studio, rooftop infinity pool with cocktail bar, and the Suite signature Fresh Restaurant.

Fusion Resorts

The oceanfront Fusion Resort Quang Binh is located at the gateway to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Phong Nha - Ke Bang National Park. Also located in this park is Son Doong, the world’s largest cave. Fusion’s three hectare property will feature 60 private villas, each with its own plunge pool. The resort will offer a spacious spa with treatments included in the nightly rate, and several dining options. This latest resort addition will start taking bookings in late 2020.

Fusion Resorts

Maia Quy Nhon, will be the first of a new brand line. Fusion breaks ground on the property late this year, and expects to open by mid 2020. Maia will continue Fusion’s wellness ethos, but the focus will be expanded to a more immersive foodie experience. Culinary journeys will be tailored to the location, and guests will be able to choose a different program each night of their stay. Options include experiences like farm-to-table & sea-to-table dining, a local food tour, cooking classes as well as pop-up dining. One complimentary daily spa treatment will round out this new brand’s offering.

“Food is an integral part of any holiday adventure,” said Meyer. “Vietnamese cuisine has now become popular worldwide. Playing to this cuisine’s popularity, we want to take guests beyond well-known dishes like pho and banh mi, educating them on the histories of these iconic foods and other lesser known regional specialties.”

Fusion Resorts

The completely new product of HIIVE will also be introduced in 2020. With a business traveller focus, this three-star plus line will cater to the lodging needs in Vietnam’s industrial zones and developing townships. Five HIIVE hotels are slated for development over the next three years in four different locations. These include Binh Duong, north of Ho Chi Minh City; Bac Ninh, just east of Hanoi; Hai Phong, on the northern coast; and, Dong Nai, also near HCMC.

Another hotel is also set to join Fusion’s growing inventory. Adding to their existing hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, plans are now underway for another property in Vietnam’s largest city. A new Fusion accommodation option will open with 146 rooms in the heart of District 1, the city’s culinary and cultural hub.

Similarly, in the most developed beachfront destination of Da Nang, Fusion currently operates two hotels - the spa-inclusive Fusion Maia Da Nang and the Fusion Suites Da Nang. The latter located on a major access road across from the beach. During 2021, Da Nang will see Fusion’s latest generation resort with the opening of Fusion Resort & Villas Da Nang. This luxury property of 157 hotel rooms and 85 villas will offer comprehensive facilities & spa amenities, which will set the standard on the beach strip.

With a portfolio of about 550 keys, wellness-inspired Fusion currently has four high-end spa-inclusive resorts and two modern apartment-style suite hotels. Their locations include the tourist destinations of Da Nang, Hue, Phu Quoc and Cam Ranh, and the country’s most important commercial center of Ho Chi Minh City.

ABOUT FUSION 

Fusion is a pioneer of wellness-inspired hotels and resorts and the only fully vertically integrated hospitality company in Southeast Asia. Blending an innovative ‘all-spa inclusive’ approach to wellness vacationing with their signature ‘breakfast anywhere, anytime’ concept, they offer welcoming, down-to-earth hospitality in outstanding holiday destinations to create unique, memorable experiences that set them apart from others.

Fusion Resorts blend stylish and sophisticated accommodation options with bed-to-beach living and holistic wellness to provide a fresh take on the traditional beach vacation. Fusion Suites give urban adventurers or family explorers a place to recover in a city to discover, mixing comfort and convenience with funky, fun and informal. Fusion Originals are bold and brave, leading the way and setting trends, dedicated to the originators and pioneers who change the world by daring to be unique. Fusion Retreats are health conscious and fitness focused, rebalancing body, mind and soul in sanctuaries of holistic restoration and indulgent pampering.

Fusion currently owns and manages 6 properties in Phu Quoc, Cam Ranh, Da Nang, Sai Gon and Hue. The company is expanding its portfolio with new hotels and resorts opening in Vung Tau, Quang Binh, Hoi An and Quy Nhon.

For more information, contact:
Ms Minh Thu Lam – Group Marketing Director at minhthu.lam@fusionhotelgroup.com
Ms Hong Phuong Nguyen – Communication Manager at phuong.nguyen@fusionhotelgroup.com

Image source: Fusion Resorts


Fusion Resorts in Vietnam Invite Weddings and Romance

By: City Pass Guide

Alba Wellness Valley by Fusion

Fusion Resort Phu Quoc

Fusion Resort Cam Ranh

Fusion Maia Da Nang

Wellness-inspired resorts launch honeymoon, wedding and commitment ceremony packages 

Guiding guests down white sand aisles, crafting romantic backdrops for beachfront vow renewals, and catering to the romantic whims of enamoured couples, Fusion Resorts across Vietnam are rolling out new wedding packages, ethereal commitment ceremony setups, and indulgent honeymoon possibilities.

“We’ve seen a clear rise in honeymooners and couples who want to say ‘I do’ at our properties over the last few years,” said Atilla Erda, chief operating officer of Fusion. “We believe it’s because Vietnam has the right balance of stunning beaches, rich cultural experiences and exoticness, without the high price tag of some other popular honeymoon and destination wedding locations.” 

Fusion Resorts

Saying ‘I do’ in Vietnam’s Former Imperial Capital 

The newest member of the wellness-inspired hotel & resort brand, Alba Wellness Valley by Fusion, taps into its natural location, surrounded by verdant mountains and steamy hot springs, and is launching a new wedding package.

The comprehensive offering includes set-up of the ceremony location amid lush tropical gardens, a celebrant, a photographer to capture the ceremony and reception, a champagne fountain, live music and an MC, a banquet service inclusive of wedding cake, a room for the bride to get ready with a makeup artist, and a complimentary honeymoon night with a late checkout. The resort can host up to 100 wedding guests and has a range of accommodations from private bungalows to chic suites overlooking a lake. 

“Our authentic Japanese onsen spa and our range of wellness activities, from sunrise yoga to water meditation in our natural hot springs, helps our couples find balance at an exciting and busy time in their lives.” said Hylton Lipkin, general manager of Alba.

Wedding package prices start at USD236 per person for the three days, two nights package and applies for weddings with a minimum of 40 guests. 

Fusion Resorts

Sandy Nuptials on Vietnam’s Largest Island

The all-spa-inclusive resort, Fusion Resort Phu Quoc, has just launched the "Lovers Embrace," an intimate beach wedding package on a tropical island.

Couples who wish to say ‘I do’ on the resort's white sand beach will be able to walk the aisle through a bamboo archway and say their vows under a wedding arch dressed in white silk and fresh flowers. All that's needed for the service is provided, including a wedding guestbook, boutonnieres and bouquets, and a welcome drink for guests before the vows. A wedding gala dinner is also included with set menus of the bride and groom's choice, two-hours of live music, and two-hours of free-flow beverages including beer & wine.

The couple (and their guests) can relax pre- and post-ceremony at Fusion's Maia Spa & Wellness Facility, with at least two therapies per day being included in the room rate. Massages, wraps and facials, along with wellness activities like yoga, are on offer there. Each villa also has its own private plunge pool to unwind in.

Package rates start at USD 3,850 for 10 people and from USD7,950 for 50 people, exclusive of the nightly room rate. 

Fusion Resorts

From Proposal to Vow Renewal on the Beach in Cam Ranh

The all-spa inclusive Fusion Resort Cam Ranh beach resort on Vietnam’s south central coast is introducing two new romance-filled packages: one for romance and possibly a proposal, and one for couples who want to reaffirm their commitment. 

‘From the Heart’ is for couples looking to pop the question or just enjoy a romantic evening on the water’s edge. Guests of this package enjoy a two night stay in a one-bedroom garden villa with private plunge pool, along with breakfast anywhere and anytime and a minimum of two spa therapies a day. At night, a private beachfront BBQ is set up on the sand, with a personal chef grilling up freshly-caught local seafood (vegetarian options are available with several different BBQ menu options) served with sparkling wine. Prices start at USD1,787 per couple. 

‘Moonlight Lovers’ is for couples who want to create a lasting memory by saying ‘I do’ one more time, or who want to reaffirm their love for each other without the legal preparations. In addition to what’s included in ‘From the Heart,’ a celebrant is also arranged to guide lovers through a commitment ceremony. Prices start at USD2,256 per couple. 

Fusion Resorts

Beachside Honeymoon Experiences in Da Nang

Fusion Maia Da Nang’s Celebration Menu is a pick-and-mix of insta-worthy experiences for couples. 

The Floating Romance Tray sets the tone for a weekend of amore with pink sparkling wine paired with fresh Western and Vietnamese bites, and floating letters spelling L-O-V-E on the surface of the guests’ private pool. Each tray starts at USD75. 

The Fresh by the Sea experience is a candlelit beachfront dinner for two with a stellar selection of seafood, like Vietnamese king crab, razor clams, sea snails and grilled langoustine. Dinner for two starts at USD195. 

Other options include several in-villa Bath Bliss packages that combine sensuous essential oils, naturally therapeutic herbs, zestful citrus fruits, or a room full of balloons for a romantic and picture-perfect evening. Each bath set-up starts at USD32.

These experiences complement the resort’s range of all-inclusive spa treatments that couples can enjoy together.

ABOUT FUSION 

Fusion is a pioneer of wellness-inspired hotels and resorts and the only fully vertically integrated hospitality company in Southeast Asia. Blending an innovative ‘all-spa inclusive’ approach to wellness vacationing with their signature ‘breakfast anywhere, anytime’ concept, they offer welcoming, down-to-earth hospitality in outstanding holiday destinations to create unique, memorable experiences that set them apart from others.

Fusion Resorts blend stylish and sophisticated accommodation options with bed-to-beach living and holistic wellness to provide a fresh take on the traditional beach vacation. Fusion Suites give urban adventurers or family explorers a place to recover in a city to discover, mixing comfort and convenience with funky, fun and informal. Fusion Originals are bold and brave, leading the way and setting trends, dedicated to the originators and pioneers who change the world by daring to be unique. Fusion Retreats are health conscious and fitness focused, rebalancing body, mind and soul in sanctuaries of holistic restoration and indulgent pampering.

Fusion currently owns and manages 6 properties in Phu Quoc, Cam Ranh, Da Nang, Sai Gon and Hue. The company is expanding its portfolio with new hotels and resorts opening in Vung Tau, Quang Binh, Hoi An and Quy Nhon.

For more information, contact:

Ms Minh Thu Lam – Group Marketing Director: thu.lam@fusionresorts.com

Ms Nguyen Hong Phuong – Communication Manager: phuong.nguyen@fusionresorts.com

Image source: Fusion Resorts


Airbnb My Guest

By: Sivaraj Pragasm

When Airbnb first appeared elsewhere in 2008, it created a new alternative for travellers seeking a nice, personalised home in non-touristy parts of the city they were visiting.

However, the idea of home-sharing came with concerns, mainly from homeowners who weren’t too sure if it was a good idea. After all, not everyone is comfortable having a stranger in their home. Here in Vietnam, things took a while to warm up but by 2016, the number of listings in Ho Chi Minh City alone tripled from the previous year with up to 3,500 listings across the city. So, how did that happen?

A Natural Extension to a Local Concept

Thi Nguyen, who runs a few listings of her own in Ho Chi Minh City, sees Airbnb as a natural extension to the Vietnamese homestay concept. “It's an opportunity to showcase our living and cultural abode to our visitors,” she says.

“So what we give is more than just a room for the night. It’s an experience which you can't get in most hotels.”

airbnb viet nam

Originally from Hanoi, Thi moved to Saigon eight years ago and runs her own events company. Needing funds to feed her passion for travel, she opened up her apartment for rent and she’s never looked back since. She currently has 11 listings on the site.

A Fresh Tourism Industry with Potential

“Vietnam’s tourism industry is very fresh compared to most other countries in Asia, which brings about both opportunities and challenges,” says Thi.

This sentiment is reflected by Hue-born Tai Phan, who spent the last few years working and studying in both the United States and Vietnam, specialising in finance and real estate investment before relocating to Da Nang where he decided to start his Airbnb venture.

airbnb viet nam

“I was back in Vietnam consulting for some investors and had a house with empty rooms,” he says. “I used Airbnb before and liked it, hence I wanted to experiment with hosting part-time. Thousands of guests and many properties later, I’m still enjoying this ‘ongoing’ experiment as if it was my first week doing it.”

Selling the Experience

People like Thi and Tai represent the archetypical modern business entrepreneurs of Vietnam by taking full advantage of an existing online model to provide a service.

Both of them also strongly believe in the importance of not being dodgy, by establishing a credible online presence in the form of well-taken photos and descriptions of their listings, and going the extra mile by giving local recommendations on places to visit and things to do.

airbnb viet nam

Guidebooks often give you recommendations that are tourist-friendly but may be slightly pricier, so you will never get to know about that particular com tam stall down your street which the locals swear is the best in Vietnam.

The Perfect Mix

According to Forbes Magazine, one of the main reasons why the Airbnb model is working so well in Vietnam, and especially in Ho Chi Minh City, is because it conveniently incorporates a perfect mix of Vietnamese culture in the form of sharing and entrepreneurship, which is a fast-rising trend among the Gen-Y and Millennial demographics in Vietnam.

However, infrastructural issues such as power outages and water shortages are also major issues among guests, although some hosts like Thi and Tai have their respective solutions.

Thi ensures that all plumbing, electricity and air-conditioning equipment are constantly maintained and replaced.

airbnb viet nam

Tai ensures that he has contacts for electricians and contractors who can respond within an hour, but if that doesn’t work, “You can explain to your guests sincerely about these issues in a friendly way and they would understand,” he says.

The Future of the Sharing Economy

Tai believes he can further expand his enterprise by recruiting good people.

“The objective is to create a hospitality group that can help travellers maximise their time during their stay and give good suggestions as to where to go and what to do.”

airbnb viet nam

Just like Tai, Thi plans to expand and focus on selling the experience, rather than just the accommodation. In the case of HCMC and Vietnam in general, this could mean a new generation of hosts who incorporate the spirit of entrepreneurship into the sharing culture that runs deep in this country.

Image source: Thi Nguyen


Vietnam’s New Position in Affordable Hospitality

By: City Pass Guide

Vietnam really is an astonishing country, its people are resilient, cheerful and welcoming. When you consider that they have spent a millennium defending themselves from various incursions, it is remarkable that they are so accepting of foreigners. The giant neighbour is something of an elephant in the room, but that apart, they welcome strangers here more so than most countries. They remain industrious, peace-loving and one of the most driven people we have met. They are also quick to forgive and forget as the many American’s living happily here will bear testimony.

Growth and More Growth

A 2006 study by Agence France-Presse, the third largest news agency in the world, placed them as the happiest race on the planet. By 2016 they have become even more satisfied as the country enjoys a growth of GDP in excess of 6.5%. Their excellent work ethic coupled with good planning has them performing better than any of their Southeast Asian neighbours, who are achieving about 4.4% growth. The future looks good as well, with the World Bank, last year, saying that these factors have meant a developing confidence which will hold them in good stead for the mid term.

Photo by: Bear Beer Photography

Country Director for Vietnam for the Global Bank recently said, “This is a good time to solidify macroeconomic stability and rebuild policy buffers, including through decisive efforts to rein in fiscal imbalances and tackle remaining vulnerabilities in the banking sector.” The amount of foreign direct investment (FDI) has also been improved by a raft of recent trade deals, adding further to the improvement of Vietnam’s standing among ASEAN countries. Turnover in total exports was up 9.2% over this period due mainly to a large increase in mobile phones, electronic equipment and computers.

TPP and Lifted Bans

Further good news comes in the form of the Trans Pacific Trade Agreement: analysts are stating that Vietnam will be the biggest beneficiary of the 13 nations involved. The signatories of the TPP account for 40% of global GDP and Vietnam could see theirs increase by as much as 8%. At the same time it is expected to add 17% to real exports and 12% to its capital stock. The ASEAN group is looking healthy from Vietnam’s point of view as the association is now the country’s third largest export market following USA and Europe.

Photo by: UN ISDR

There have been significant changes in foreign ownership and share trading recently. This will stimulate growth and investment, and reduce sectors where foreign investment was banned from 51 to only 6. This, in addition to the abolition of the 49% cap on foreign ownership of shares on the stock exchange, will now allow foreign investors to fully acquire listed companies, excluding, of course, the banking sector.

A New Class of Travellers

Vietnam’s affordable hospitality sector is set to take off with news that low cost carrier, Vietjet has just added two new routes. They now have connected Ho Chi Minh City with the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur and Tainan City in Taiwan. More routes are planned as well.

Photo by: DAIHYUN JI

Millennials are being seen as a new class of traveller. The Vietnamese are prudent by nature, meaning that the cheaper hotel accommodation sector is likely to find a new home in the country. The new brand of cheap hotels offer good Wi-Fi connectivity, meaning that young business people are taking advantage of a good deal as well as the more expected backpacker crowd. The Malaysian experience bears this out with the mid-priced hotel brand “Vivid”, set to open in Georgetown by 2018. Penang is predicted to enjoy something of a renaissance in the M.I.C.E. business with the addition of two new convention centres.

Photo by: Ronald Tagra

Malaysia’s MM2H visa is valid initially for a period of ten years, depending on the validity of the applicant’s passport, and is also renewable. Penang is now seen as an exciting potential growth area for Vanguard Hotels. Together with other on-going projects in Kuala Lumpur, this adds up to US$40 million worth of investment in Malaysia for the Vanguard Group. The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) recently released a new consumer research report which they called “Stepping Out of the Crowd: Where the Next Generation of Young Asian Travellers is Heading, and How to Win a Place on Their Travel Itinerary”. This examines travel trends of young Asians and explains how secondary destinations and further attractions will benefit from the rise in outbound travel from Asia.

It looks highly likely that the $60-80 hotels will be seen as sensible choices for travellers in Asia. Vietnam looks to be a prominent player in the new market of affordable hospitality in Asia.

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