Romantic Travels in Vietnam
A change of scenery is often just what it takes to put a little magic and mystery back into your relationship. Find out why Vietnam may be just the place for you.
The Old Quarter
Hanoi is a whirlwind of daily life. The city buzzes by day, with everyone hopping on motorbikes to get things done. In the evening, the buzz continues but with the convivial charm of late-night promenades and street-side café culture. One of Hanoi’s oldest sites is the 1070 Temple of Literature (Văn Miếu) which honors the great Chinese philosopher Confucius. It was also Vietnam’s first university. Set amid lovely gardens and courtyards, it is the city’s most popular tourist attraction. At night, take in a traditional water puppet show at the theatre near the central Hoan Kiem Lake and then disappear into the Old Quarter to find a sidewalk café where you can relax and watch the world go by.
Arriving in Hanoi
A great place to stay in Hanoi is the 1901 French colonial-style Hotel Metropole, which puts the lake and Old Quarter within walking distance, yet provides an elegant oasis from its frenetic energy.
Kings, princes and presidents have stayed at the Metropole. From writer Graham Greene (who has a suite named for him) to Mick Jagger, hotel has always been a favourite to rich and famous. Even Charlie Chaplin once booked a suite there for his honeymoon. From your room, you can look out into Hanoi’s streets for a view of the modern Opera Wing or the stately original Metropole building.
Entertainment in Vietnam
Live jazz is performed every evening in Le Club. They also serve high tea in the afternoon with a spread of goodies that includes handmade bonbons and creamy, made-to-order, pure hot chocolate. Angelina’s, the stylish and gourmet Italian steakhouse, puts a DJ’s spin on at night, and its sidewalk café serves as the perfect spot for a morning cappuccino. Enjoy the Asian menu at Spices Garden one day, and the city’s finest French cuisine at Le Beaulieu the next.
The hotel spa is huddled within the hotel grounds next to a quiet pool and it creates a world within a world. Inside its doors, frankincense fills the air. A few hours in a couples-treatment room brings Eastern and Western methods together to work the kinks out of your body and soul.
If you prefer a bit of seaside splendor, hop a short flight to Da Nang to find The Nam Hai just down the coast. One of Vietnam’s most luxurious resorts, The Nam Hai offers a slice of heaven with meticulously manicured grounds abloom with lilies and frangipani along the pristine sands of the China Beach.
The location combines the natural beauty of the glittering sea and a scattering of islands with a bit of history. Three UNESCO World Heritage sites make ideal day-trips: the Imperial city of Hue, the ruins of the Cham kingdom at My Son, and – just minutes away by the resort’s daily shuttle – the charming fishing village of Hoi An. Take a stroll for a couple of hours through its colonial streets or hire a local fishing boat to take a river tour. At the end of your excursion the hotel shuttle arrives with chilled towels to return you to the laps of luxury.
In the evening, dine by candlelight either indoors or al fresco at the main restaurant or near the beach. Choose your vintage from one of the largest wine cellars in Vietnam. Or go really private and arrange a boat ride to one of the nearby islands for a romantic picnic, beach barbecue or even a sunset cruise. The Nam Hai’s private villas offer a great view of the sea and direct paths through the sand to get there. Choose a villa with a large, private infinity pool. In the evening, turndown room service, light candles or sprinkle rose petals in your bathtub, which is just steps from the bed draped in muslin.
Infinity edges connect the resort’s pools to the sea and attendants bring bottled water and cool towels at a moment’s notice. They also serve drinks and food from a beachside menu. Private butlers are at your beck and call back at the villa. Before you check out, be sure to have a couples-massage treatment in one of the cabanas suspended over a private lagoon.
A vacation in Vietnam is a long way from your same old routine. You’ll also notice that Vietnamese service is among the best in the world. Spoil yourself and rejuvenate your relationship by experiencing this vibrant land.