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Thursday 6 April 2017

The grand old dame of Hanoi; somewhere seriously special to stay

Truly great hotels have something special that sets them apart. 

It's not the fine wine and food; the luxurious bedrooms and bathrooms or top-notch staff; that is all taken for granted when you are laying out the serious bucks. 

The X Factor is more a sense of innate style that draws guests in; somehow suggesting that this is "THE" place to be. 

That is certainly the case with the Sofitel Legend Hotel Metropole in Hanoi, Vietnam, which is effortlessly elegant and sumptuously furnished without being off-puttingly decadent. 

The hotel,, just across the road from the Hanoi Opera House in the old quarter, dates back to 1901 and has old and new quarters, both blessed with Sofitel's signature French-accented ambience. 

It is the hotel that Hanoi, arguably the most beautiful of the colonial Indochinese cities, deserves and has hosted great names in the arts and politics, ranging from Mick Jagger and Charlie Chaplin to Joan Baez and Jane Fonda along with presidents Bill Clinton and Francois Hollande. Also our own Paul Keating, Phillip Noyce and Luke Nguyen.  

There are 364 rooms in all, with 106 and three suites in the old Metropole wing and 236 in the more modern Opera wing, including 12 premium patio rooms and 18 suites. 

There is a spa that is promoted as the leading luxury fitness centre in Vietnam, executive floors and revamped Club Lounge, as well as nine meeting rooms and a business centre. 

Dining options range from the classic French cuisine of Le Baillieu, Vietnamese-accented Spices Garden and Angelina, an Italian-styled restaurant and lounge that enticed me in for a couple of late-night cocktails along with some pate and toast. Very chic.

There are several bars; and should you need a transfer, the hotel has a fleet of chauffeured BMW limousines at your disposal. 

The rooms are as you'd expect; super comfortable beds, timber floors, free broadband internet, LCD TVs and DVD players. And there are some delightful in-room gourmet goodies. 

The Metropole is an elegant grande dame that has collected swags of awards over the years; from being on the Conde Nast Traveler Gold List of the best places to stay in the world in 2017.  

Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi, 15 Ngo Quyen Street, Hoan Kiem District, 10000, Hanoi. +84 4 3826 6919.

# The writer was a guest of Vietnam Airlines, which flies direct between Sydney and Hanoi. 

1 comment:

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