Sunday, June 6, 2010

Movenpick, Hanoi- My Home Away from Home

It's my third time in Hanoi. The last time was in February 2009. Had to visit the oh-so cool City of Lakes again to help a new project. This will be my place for ten days.  First it was at the Metropole, then the Hilton and now the Movenpick. When they told me that I was going to be booked at the Movenpick the first thing that came to mind was the ice cream Bel and I ate while in Singapore. Could it be the same? Apparently, Movenpick manages certain "Swiss" hotels and Movenpick Hanoi is one of them.

It's a smaller hotel compared to the historical Metropole and the large Hilton. This is not to say that it's not worth staying there because it is. I mean if you want the no-nonsense, no frills, business type hotel, the Movenpick is just perfect. Although if you're a tourist and love walking, the two other hotels are more strategic in terms of location with the Hanoi Opera House and the Hoan Kiem lake nearby. But again Hanoi is so small so it's not like you have to travel so far to get to the Old Quarter from the Movenpick.

The Movenpick's hotel lobby is scaled down compared to the Hilton. It's front desk is manned by two people. Nevertheless, they were really efficient so there's not a long waiting time when you need their assistance. A lot of the people that I saw at the Movenpick were business people, those that I saw at the Metropole the last time I was there were tourists who had money to burn. I think the Metropole charges $200 a nite. At least that gives you an idea, right?

Service wise, I was a satisfied client. When my TV didn't have the channel that carried the live feed of the World Cup, they hurriedly sent a technician to add the channel for free. He said not to tell the other guests. He just wanted to make a "soccer fan" like me happy. Then there was a time after breakfast when I decided to have some rice for take away for lunch at the office. They happily obliged and asked if I wanted anything from the buffet. Some hotels don't allow you to take away food from the breakfast buffet. When I wanted stif-ried vegetables not available on their menu, the waiter said that he would ask the chef to cook it for me. The staff is courteous and and their frontliners speak English.

Their internet connection is good. It costs $3.00 an hour and $12.00 for the entire day.

So if you're in Hanoi and want to stay at a hotel that's not as expensive as the Metropole or the Hilton, the Movenpick is indeed a wise choice.

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