One of the benefits of traveling Southeast Asia is the low cost of hotel accomodations. When Andy and I were looking for places to stay in Hanoi, we knew that we wanted to stay in the old quarter as it was a cute part of town but also central to the items that we wanted to see during our short stay.
Choosing Our Hotel & Room
I looked at hotels in the old quarter area of Hanoi on TripAdvisor to find highly rated hotels. One of the top rated hotels in the area was the Splendid Star Suite Hotel.
After looking at their website, we found that the pricing was within our budget and they had a really fun looking honeymoon suite, complete with a round bed. While I struggled with the price difference between a standard room and honeymoon room, Andy convinced me to splurge since it was our honeymoon after all. I splurged and booked the honeymoon room for $48, a $15 price difference from the superior room.
Looking back it is almost humorous that I was so strict with myself financially, especially on our honeymoon and over $15. Even though things are way cheaper than back home, I still hate spending more money than I need to on anything.
Through the whole booking process I was in touch with Sally from the hotel who was amazing, wrote very good English and was extremely responsive.
She booked us a car service from the airport to the hotel. At $18, it was quite a bargain since it was a good 45 minute drive from the airport to the old quarter of Hanoi.
I also inquired if the hotel could hold our luggage for us when we took a journey up to Sapa, Vietnam. She let me know that this would be no problem at all and offered to purchase our overnight train tickets. This was a great relief since I knew that the tickets would be purchased correctly and we wouldn’t risk a sold out train. Above and beyond that she also offered us a hotel room at one of their other properties to freshen up after our night train returned from Sapa. This is something that was completely unexpected and very welcome as having a shower after a night on the train felt amazing. We were happy to be fresh and clean before we headed to Bangkok for our next adventure.
The Honeymoon Room at the Splendid Star Suite Hotel
When we arrived at the hotel, we were given a welcome drink, something that we have found was common in Southeast Asia. While I like to check in and go right to a room, there is something about taking a few minutes to just relax first that I really liked.
Once our room was ready, the hotel staff took our bags and escorted us up the stairs to the top (5th) floor where our room was located. There is no elevator available and there are quite a few stairs, but for us it was a non-issue. If you have issues with stairs, I would recommend requesting a room on a lower floor or investigating what hotels in the area have elevators.
Our room was decorated for our honeymoon which was a very nice touch. Even though we told every hotel it was our honeymoon when we booked them, only the Splendid Star Suite Hotel and the Centara Grand Krabi decorated for us.
The room was massive and had a great balcony with a beautiful view of St Joseph’s Cathedral. We also had a computer in the room which was hardwired to the internet. We decided to use the computer to upload photos to our Google drive. The internet was the fastest that we had on our entire trip and actually even faster than our internet at home!
Breakfast was included in the room rate and was extremely good. We both opted to get some juice and chicken soup, because when in Vietnam do as the Vietnamese do. Everything was great, you could tell the the juice was fresh squeezed, the broth of the soup had the perfect flavor and the noodles were the perfect consistency.
While the room itself wasn’t perfect in every sense, you can tell that the hotel was working to improve the room over time. They also left a survey for us which encouraged us to point out everything that we would want improved. I think that they were using the survey results to see where they should focus their energies.
Most importantly to us, the room was very clean and that is what we care about most.
I would recommend the Splendid Star Suite Hotel to anyone looking for a hotel in the Hanoi old quarter area. The price is reasonable, the staff is really friendly and speak English well, and the location is perfect. We were able to walk everywhere that we wanted easily.
If you go out late at night or very early in the morning, know that the gates will be covering the hotel storefront. It can be a little trickier to find when you don’t see the storefront, but luckily Andy was born with the sense of direction that I am lacking and was able to find the hotel easily. You’ll need to buzz the bell in order to get let in.
If you need a taxi to the airport, make sure that you have the hotel make a reservation for a driver the night before. The hotel was scrambling to find us a taxi driver the morning of our flight which was a little stressful. We didn’t even think that it would be an issue, but in hindsight should never assume. Luckily it was a non-issue since they found a driver for us, it just took a little bit longer than I was hoping it would.