Monday, August 25, 2014

HOTEL CHECK VIETNAM, Amanoi

Aman has made its debut in Vietnam with Amanoi. One of the most discerning Select Collectionites, our Managing Director Fredrik Ljung, reviews this new option for a luxurious beach holiday in Vietnam...

Above a sandy beach and Beach Club, Amanoi  overlooks pictureque Vinh Hy Bay, offering the streamlined elegance and serene privacy that you expect of Aman resorts, perhaps more so. This newest Aman hotel has truly stunning facilities to match the stunning location.


The ultimate in privacy and views


The Beach Club - and quiet beach

Location

Amanoi has a dramatic location on rolling hills sloping down to the ocean. A vast amount of land has been bought to ensure absolute privacy and no neighboring resorts. There is no nearby village worth mentioning. Once here, you stay here.

Transportation around the resort is by buggies due to the distances and the terrain. Walking to the beach club from the welcome pavilion takes around 15 minutes.

You fly into Nha Trang Cam Ranh airport and the transfer to the hotel takes around 1 hour and 30 minutes. The distance is only 55 kms but it is a slow drive due to traffic. The drive from the airport will take you through urban areas of Nha Trang along the coast and out on into the countryside.

Facilities

The cliff pool area
The yoga pavilion beside the lake by the spa

The luxurious spa

Apart from the Beach Club with watersports and a lap pool by the beach, the resort facilities include two great tennis courts, a quiet cliff pool at the resort's highest point, a great gym with the latest equipment, a yoga pavilion, luxurious spa suites, two steam and wet suites which guests can use free of charge. They are booked for private use and feature a steam sauna, a lukewarm Jacuzzi and a cold dip plunge pool as well as loungers, bathroom and shower. These wet suites are amazing to use before spa treatment or in conjunction with exercising in the gym. The spa treatments are pricy compared to other 5-star resorts in Vietnam. Expect to pay 130 USD for 60 minute massage and 180 USD for a 90 minute massage, but then it is a true luxury experience in a spacious spa suite.


Dining

Fresh and colourful 

The impressive main pavilion is the only option for evening dining; it has one outdoor area and one air conditioned area. The menu is limited but Management has promised to improve options following our feedback. The good news is that the kitchen will prepare dishes that are not on the menu. Also, the Beach Club is open for lunch and has a much more extensive menu with a lot more of the Vietnamese dishes.

In villa dining – a reasonable selection of dishes can be ordered. Pricing is high for Vietnam but lower than most other Amans. Expect to pay 10-15 USD for a starter and 20 USD for a main course. An imported steak would be more – around 40 USD. A glass of house wine is 15 USD. Good quality wine and champagne is very expensive. (A bottle of non vintage champagne is 200 USD).

Pavilions

The resort has 31 pavilions that are identical but divided into 4 categories depending on view or with or without pool.
1. Pavilion (viewing the mountains or the lake)
2. Ocean Pavilion (viewing the ocean)
3. Pool Pavilion – private pool and views
4. Ocean Pool pavilion – private pool and ocean views

Our accommmodation  with elegant  Feng Shui

All pavilions have been carefully integrated in the lush vegetation and offer complete privacy. The standard of the interiors is very high, the highest I have ever experienced at an Aman resort. It is very spacious with a big bedroom/living room area and spacious bathroom area with 2 wardrobes, double vanities, shower, separate bath and toilet. The pavilions also feature a big flat screen with plenty of channels, something not always the case in an Aman.

Another view of a pool pavilion

All pavilions have an outdoor deck. The pool is quite a good size.

Villas – the resort has 5 multi bedroom villas (3,4 and 5 bedrooms). The ideal accommodation is the 5 bedroom beach villa which is not on the beach but very near the beach club with full ocean view and a very big private swimming pool. The villa consists of 5 separate pavilions (not attached) and one living room/library pavilion and an outdoor dining sala. No other accommodation at the resort is near the beach club, only this unit.

Worth noting

No adapters required for Scandinavians since Vietnam has French plugs. Sound systems in rooms are for iPhone 4, but adapters for iPhone 5 can be requested.

English skills are currently somewhat lacking among the staff. But what works is that you never need to mention your room number or sign any bills when consuming. This is something I really love when staying at an Aman.

The beach is attractive but quite small.  Suntanning and languishing on sunbeds takes place elsewhere - often at your private pool.

Why we like Amanoi 

Amazing hardware
Stunning location
Extremely private
Great facilities
You never mention your room number or sign any bills

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