A Cozy Home Away From Home in D3

accommodation - Saigon/HCMC: May 29, 2018

Part of the beauty of Saigon is its multitudes, the worlds within worlds that all live in harmony.

Take, for example, the bustle of one of District 3’s busiest streets Dien Bien Phu, which even at peak rush hour is silenced by the peaceful neighbourhood of those like nearby Ward 4. The neighbourhood is intimate. An enterprising motorbike could snake through its wet market and past a couple coffee shops hidden like secrets, before arriving at a tall, handsome yellow building, the Oakwood Apartments Ho Chi Minh City (OAHC).

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The visitors are greeted by a retro chic café in the window, which you can see through the yellow building’s generously sized windows. The hotel service staff are professional and attentive though the place feels cozy, like the home of a friend.

Home Away From Home

The commonalities between a hotel and a home are there intentionally.

The staff explained that the apartment’s guests are largely members of the professional class. They are absent during the day but, “after working out they come back here, chill out and enjoy their time.”
OAHC also serves short-term travelers who are staying less than a month, but most of the building’s residents have committed for longer than that.

Bachelor Pad or Deluxe Penthouse?

For a short stay of a few nights, the business traveler might consider the residential hotel’s Studio Deluxe room, a 39-square-metre affair complete with the amenities you’d expect from similarly high-quality Saigon stays—WiFi, TV and an air conditioner to cool you down for a restful sleep on the room’s queen bed—as well well-thought out extras like a multimedia panel on the desk that allows you to mirror your laptop’s screen on the television if you need to look at very large spreadsheets (or Netflix).

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In OAHC, families have even more options, from the Two Bedroom Apartment—a polished, 65-square-metre multi-guest accomodation—or the more upscale Two Bedroom Penthouse, a home away from home that includes a bathtub and an outdoor balcony.

What’s On the Menu

Anyone who’s been in the city more than a few hours will readily recognize that it’s entirely possible to never cook and, more importantly, to eat well courtesy of Saigon’s robust restaurant and street food scene.

But if you want to cook something special or just want to save some money, OAHC furnishes its kitchen areas with a wealth of cooking implements and serving utensils. What’s more, a newly opened no.18 Lounge at the lobby means you’re never far from the freshly made meal of your choosing. If you need more local ingredients for your meal, try out the Vuon Chuoi Market 5 mins away.

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What’s more, a regular cleaning staff visits the units three times a week (daily for short-term stays) and will turn your room fresh like new.

Localized Expertise

The digs are nice and hearing the pleasant birdsong of neighboring schoolchildren is almost as charming as the location, but what really puts the residence head and shoulders above the competition is the knowledge of the lay of the land. They’ll show you where you can get a late night snack, where you can have a meal and they can even direct you to the pleasantly quirky cafe-cum-aquarium shop nearby.

“Some of the guests want to explore the area … and we support that”, the Hotel Manager said describing this specific, homestay-like aspect to OAHC’s service portfolio.

Another hotel might try to pack as many amenities as possible in to their space, encouraging dwellers to firmly achor there. OAHC’s guidance supports the guests as they go out and explore the intimate, quaint spaces of Ward 4’s hems and alleyways. It’s an aspect of Saigon that is being crowded out in favour in the highrise and the retail development world. Like the OAHC’s preference for a nostalgic, classic look, the neighborhood around the accomodation feels like a living memory of a slower and quieter Saigon.

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Other extended living quarters may bring you closer to the action, “but in here, we have a quiet location. People are quite friendly … and here people can safely walk around.”

What Others Say

Oakwood Apartments Ho Chi Minh City 3.5 Star rating on TripAdvisor puts it in the top tier of the city’s hotels. The most mentioned facilities at OAHC are the sauna, steam room and pool. Guests also lauded the “stylish” interior of the hotel’s quarters.

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What We Say

While it’s certainly possible to get a worthwhile experience from within one of the larger, more visible (in brand as well as physical presence) hotels downtown, but you’d be missing out on seeing a Ho Chi Minh City that you might otherwise miss while here. Make the most of your time here through OAHC’s knowledgeable staff. When you’re ready to relax, come back for a nap inside your attractively-made home away from home or have an espresso downstairs in the cafe. The west-facing dining area captures a romantic mood around late afternoon. Oakwood Apartments Ho Chi Minh City will throw the atmosphere in for free.

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