Hotel Caravelle is a legendary establishment in Ho Chi Minh. It is the ideal place to stay for couples and businessmen and women. With its 330 rooms, this imposing hotel also offers the advantage of being located right in the heart of the city centre. Luxury, comfort and style are what you can expect from this establishment and even the most demanding customers are sure to be satisfied.
The hotel is located right in front of the Opera, in the city centre of Ho Chi Minh, and when there is no traffic (which is seldom the case), the airport is only half an hour drive away. However, depending on your departure time, you might want to seek advice from the hotel staff. As far as restaurants, chic boutiques and trendy bars are concerned, they can all be found within a radius of a few hundred feet.
As from January 2009, there is free Internet access in the hotel.
Most of the guests are American, European and Australian businessmen and women.
The 7th,8th,and 9thfloors are occupied by Executive rooms.
The Caravelle is made of two buildings; the older ten-floor building which was built in 1959, and the newer one, with 24 floors, which was finished in 1998. The hotel is classy and tastefully decorated in the "Art Nouveau" style. The ground floor offers lounge areas, along with a restaurant and a bar where the atmosphere is rather conventional; the top floor, however, is a completely different story! The bar, which offers a panoramic view over the city and the Saigon River, is renowned for its crazy atmosphere. During the day, you can enjoy the indoor tables and the cool air which circulates via the numerous inlets, but when the temperatures really start to fall, head for the main terrace. Finally, when night falls, music fills the air and from the terrace to the dance floor, the party gets swinging! It's open every night until midnight, except on Sundays (so don't wait till too late before indulging in a drink and a dance).
If you need to relax after a hard day's work or after a night of partying at the bar on the top floor, you should head for the 7th floor, which is dedicated to relaxation and physical exercise. You will find a very pleasant spa that offers guests a massage and general pampering. In the inner court yard, there is a long swimming pool that is ideal if you want to swim lengths and there is even a dedicated area where you can play with your children. There are also a couple of deckchairs around the pool if you want to work on your tan. Behind a bay window which gives onto the swimming pool, you will see the fitness centre. It is open 24/7 and equipped with state-of-the-art machines and television screens. Last but not least, there is the bar; a place to get some deserved comfort after a gruelling sports session, but also a place for partygoers who want to enjoy a drink after their afternoon nap.
All the beds are brand new, with comfortable American mattresses. At least one is sure to sleep soundly!
The two buildings that make up the hotel are largely similar, the only exception being that the more spacious rooms are found in the older building. The 340 sq ft rooms, which are decorated with wall-to-wall carpets and light wooden furniture, are very luminous thanks to large bay windows, but unfortunately they look like they've come straight out of a cheap furniture catalogue! However, that said, the rooms are very clean and you will appreciate the kettle, the flat screen television, the alarm clock and the minibar. Be aware though that the cap, mug and pens which you would expect to come as free gifts, are actually payable. All these items are on sale in your room and there is no point trying to pocket them as they will be charged to your bill. A nice little detail to be aware of: you can control the lighting from your bedside table! The simply decorated bathrooms include a little bathtub, scales, a hair-dryer and hospitality products.
Finally, in the newer building, you can stay in the Deluxe rooms which have a DVD player, a hifi, a dressing-gown and small plastic ducks for children that you can play with in the bath. These rooms are more comfortable and better equipped, but don't show much difference in terms of interior decorating.
All buffet meals are served in the large and colourful dining room. The setting lacks a bit of light and privacy, but despite the simplicity of the surroundings, the cooking is impeccable and there is a wide choice of delicious dishes which will delight even the most gourmet guests. On the third floor, a slightly more intimate restaurant offers an a la carte menu for lunch and a single menu for supper. The interior is more traditional, less modern, with wall-to-wall carpets, several paintings and a piano (regular concerts are played here).
After a fine meal, there is nothing better than having a proper Espresso while enjoying the view of the opera! In order to benefit from that, you should head to the ground-floor bar.
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