Last year when I visited Ho Chi Minh City for ITE 2017 I also stayed in the city central of Saigon. It was a pleasure staying at the Myst Dong Khoi and I named it the best boutique hotel in Ho Chi Minh City. This year when I came back for ITE 2018 I slept on the other side of the street in the Grand Hotel Saigon, an iconic property in Saigon.
One of the oldest hotels in the city dating back to 1930 and completely restored in 1997.
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Location Grand Hotel Saigon
The Grand Hotel Saigon is located in District 1 in the Dong Khoi area where you can also find the Opera House, the famous Ben Thanh Market, the Notre Dame Basilica and many more Ho Chi Minh City tourist spots. This is one of the most upscale and popular tourist areas in the city. Just around the corner from the hotel you can find a Gucci store and Vietnam House Saigon restaurant from the famous Australian/Vietnamese Masterchef Luke Nguyen which is running for the first Michelin Star in Vietnam. Read more about eating out in this restaurant in my blog about visiting ITE HCMC 2018.
The Grand Hotel Saigon has an extremely convenient location. If you like it central you can hardly find a better one!
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Rooms Grand Saigon
There are two types of rooms in the Grand Hotel Saigon. My room was on the 13th floor facing the city. The view was not bad, not spectacular either. The rooms have fairly small windows and there are no balconies, but at least they are pretty spacious. The bed was really big and slept perfectly, although my jet leg did not let me sleep often.
Big plus is the daily complimentary fresh fruit service. Every day there was a big dragon fruit and some bananas left behind in my room. They hotel also provides two complimentary small bottles of water, more drinking water is chargeable however the very lovely housekeeping was more than happy to provide me some extra bottles of water.
My bathroom had a very nice rain shower with a lot of pressure exactly how I like it. There was also a bath tub, a small one, but enough for me to fall asleep in.
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Surprisingly the breakfast is some days only till 9.30 and for a night person like me that is early. I honestly did not know about it and one day I showed up at 9.45 to find the breakfast room almost deserted. I was shocked, but the restaurant manager directly came to me explaining the situation and willing to find a solution. A couple moments later I was served a a la carte breakfast and all my wishes were fulfilled. I was urged to take my time and had a personal chat with a bunch of the staff who were super friendly. Amazing service from the Park Hotel Saigon to serve me a breakfast even after it was closed.
The buffet breakfast is pretty standard though at the Park Hotel Saigon, not really something special and since it is at the second floor, not really a good view to wake up either. It feels very corporate, no atmosphere. Strangely cappuccino’s, latte’s and other special coffees are on extra charge and not included in the buffet breakfast. A bit odd if you ask me in a country were labor costs and milk are definitely not the highest. It is a small investment for the hotel to upgrade this. It would add a lot to a guests' experience if the coffee is excellent in the morning.
No, apart from the excellent service and the super friendly staff in the breakfast room I was not really a fan of the buffet breakfast at Park Hotel Saigon.
Facilities Grand Hotel Saigon
No rooftop swimming pool at the Park Hotel Saigon, but a lovely courtyard. In the heritage wing of the hotel there is an instagrammable courtyard with a swimming pool. A very relaxing spot in this extremely bustling city and I know for sure when you visit Ho Chi Minh City relaxing at this pool feels like heaven. No traffic sounds and a green and white clean neat environment.
The greens are growing out of control a little if you ask me and the maintenance could be better.
If you are a fan of gambling then definitely book your room in Grand Hotel Saigon. Or may be not when walking into the hotels onside casino is too tempting for you. Just one staircase up from the reception on the ground floor.
There is a small gym, not very special, but at least there are a couple cardio machines and some free weights. It is very hot in the gym and I tried to turn the AC down, though unfortunately with no success.
A great asset of this hotel is its small but nice rooftop bar. They created a very green and pleasant environment up here and the views are really good. In a couple directions. Especially the river view is very nice. Very cool that they are open from 6.00 in the morning till midnight. So if you want to catch the sunrise with a coffee then that is possible.
Value for money
Looking at the price level for the Grand Hotel Saigon I think that you get great value for money. I already found the Grand Hotel Saigon for less than €90 on Agoda, the biggest hotel booking platform in Asia. Have a look here for the best rates.
Also on Booking they have a great review score of 8.7 out of more than 1,500 reviews. That is excellent!
Overall review of the Grand Hotel Saigon
I would be lying if I would say this is my favorite hotel in Ho Chi Minh City. The Dong Khoi area has a couple nice hotels to choose from and I think the Park Hotel Saigon needs to step up its game a little more to compete with the others. That said the value for money is good as the hotel is very affordable and their overal reviews on the hotel booking platforms are really good, so who am I to complain!
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