Ho Chi Minh (Saigon) is an underrated gem. The world-class city doesn’t get the attention it deserves – yet. The metropolis of nearly 10 million people is often forgotten when comparing the top Asian and even Southeast-Asian hubs. This is all about to change with the cities growing infrastructure and it’s plan to become a business powerhouse in the Southeast Asian market.
I was recently back in Ho Chi Minh on a bit of a holiday with my mom and my friend Johnny and his mom. This was the first time travelling with my mom since I went exploring ice caves in Jasper National Park with her a year earlier. We were really for this trip, it would be my mom’s first time to Ho Chi Mihn and Vietnam and my first time back since 2011. Johnny and I had planned how to spend our days in Ho Chi Minh to show our mom’s everything the city had before we headed to the Vietnamese Island of Phu Quoc.
We wanted to treat our mom’s to a bit of luxury in the big city. So we booked two nights at the Sheraton Saigon. Ho Chi Minh is a great city so it was important to have a place to kick back and get some respite from our busy days.
Location is high, if not at the top of the list of things I look for when booking a hotel in a city and the Sheraton is dab-smack in the middle of the city. It’s situated in the heart of District 1 – the main and most popular district. It’s within walking distance to all main city attractions, the Saigon river, Nguyen Hue Walking Street and the Opera House.
There were a few really great things about this hotel the most impressive and best part of the stay was the service. I can honestly say this was top 5 hotels in terms of service I have ever stayed at. Starting with an airport pick-up that took a little longer than we would have hoped, the driver was there to greet us and get us quickly and safely to the hotel. Upon arriving we were welcomed and individually guided to our rooms. Waiting in our room was a delicious iced Vietnamese coffee and some chocolates designed into mini scooters. It was such a nice touch to being welcomed into a great city. This service continued throughout the stay.
After we checked in we mosied down to the club lounge. The lounge is open all day but has timeframes when they serve a delicious ray of food and free flow alcohol. They served endless sushi and sashimi, so that and an Ashaii beer and I was in complete heaven. The lounge also had a high tea in the afternoon and a private breakfast each morning.
On the topic of breakfast, this hotel had one of the most amazing breakfast’s I have seen to date. You could get lost navigating all the different stations. Omelette station, fresh juice, various bread, cheeses, meats, pizza, ice-cream, noodles, Pho, Bang Mi sandwiches, plus Vietnamese coffee. It was unbelievable.
A rooftop bar is a must for any visit to Saigon. On our second night, we checked out the Skybar that’s at the top of the hotel’s second tower. It offers a quiet environment to have a drink, talk with friends and gawk at the growing skyline.
Randomly while we were there Vietnam won a quarterfinal soccer game in the Under 23 Asean Cup Finals. The victory had people pouring out into the streets and we could see it all from the rooftop. We finished our drinks and headed down to feel the energy from the city. Which was pretty wild.
The streets were filled with thousands of people waving flags and honking horns. It was exciting to see a city and a country so enthusiastic about a victory most wouldn’t care of. We refrained from partying too hard that night with the locals and headed back to our comfy rooms at the Sheraton to get ready for the next Vietnamese adventure – the island of Phu Quoc.