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“Extremely disappointed” 1 of 5 stars
Review of An Lam Saigon River Private Residences

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An Lam Saigon River Private Residences
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   21/4 Khu Pho Trung | Vinh Phu, Ho Chi Minh City 10000, Vietnam   |  
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Ranked #6 of 371 Hotels in Ho Chi Minh City
Rome, Italy
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“Extremely disappointed”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 9, 2013

Despite having emailed the resort well in advance our stay specifying our requests, we were very disappointed. The room (the Saigon Villa) was very noisy, as boats were continuously passing by the river and very close, making a horrible noise. We had two meals in the Villa with the room service, and both were not good: food quality was just poor, fruit was not ripe, the spicy lemon chicken and the grilled tuna tasted like they had been frozen for a long time...in our opinion that could not be fresh food!
Moreover, our calls to the butler were repeatedly unanswered. In fact, one may even wonder if they have a personal butler service...they claim they do, but we just met her when she showed us the room, and she then disappeared.
I met the General manager, a young French guy, and presented him with all the problems we experienced…He had just nothing to say but that he was sorry! Overall, our impression was of totally unprepared and untrained staff, apparently frustrated by the recent change of the management company.
Considering that the price range of this resort is $700++ a night, I would never go back here. I stayed one night, for the same price, at the Park Hyatt in Saigon, where we truly enjoyed a wonderful service!

Room Tip: I stayed in the Saigon Villa. I don't reccomedn it to anybody wishing to sleep well at night!
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kiwi_Tran, Owner at An Lam Saigon River Private Residences, responded to this review, April 15, 2013
Dear Stefano di Rienzo,
Thank you for sharing your comments with us on Trip Advisor. It is disappointing to read that we did not meet your expectations and I hope to be able to communicate directly with you so that I can get a clear understanding of the situation and also allow me to address my apologies. You are most welcome to contact me via my official email rm.sr@anlam.com
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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121 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (38)
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richmond uk
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

We stayed here for two nights recently, would strongly recommend for the location and standard of villas (esp those with own pools), but was very disappointed by the food despite reading glowing reviews about the chef and standard of cuisine on offer. The prices also were very expensive, which made the meal even harder to swallow as it were!

Staff were all excellent, however I think the Swiss manager needs to address this. If the restaurant was comparable with all the rest, this would be one of my top tips for any boutique hotel anywhere, the views across the Mekong were a delight, as were the views from the lovely restaurant, but the food... second rate sadly.

Room Tip: Either of the villas with pools overlooking the Mekong river. I think we stayed at SONG villa which...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kiwi_Tran, Owner at An Lam Saigon River Private Residences, responded to this review, April 15, 2013
Dear Henry,
Thank you for sharing your comments with us on Trip Advisor. It is disappointing to read that we did not meet your expectations and I hope to be able to communicate directly with you so that I can get a clear understanding of the situation and also allow me to address my apologies. You are most welcome to contact me via my official email rm.sr@anlam.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2013

When we checked into An Lam Saigon for two nights this past January we were thrilled with the enormous ‘family’ suite we had been given. My husband and I were traveling with our two children and it was an ideal set up. The main room had a huge dining table, a very large balcony, living area with tv and a four poster queen in an alcove across from a full bath. The master bedroom had another king and a larger full bath.  It almost seemed as if a manager’s apartment had been given up for us.  We were impressed.  However, by the time we went to bed I was wondering if we had made a mistake. At the pool there were no towels and the furniture was a bit dirty. The frame holding the mosquito netting on our bed fell down as we were doing our own turn down service and they came to fix it, but instead of a quick fix and then coming back while we were out the next day, they spent an hour while we waited in our pjs to turn in after a long day of traveling. The shower in the master bath didn't get hot, (after a couple requests it was finally fixed the day we left) and there was a noticable mildew smell in the master bath that remained throughout our days there, the door to the suite wouldn’t latch without locking it with the key, and once we looked closely, we noticed a lot of grubbiness around the edges of things generally (a little mildew here, dirt there, chipped paint etc. - nothing major but it could've been better).  The manager was new and the 'butler' was so discrete as to be pretty hard to find.  Nevertheless, all of these quibbles melted away by the time we checked out two days later, and we ended up thinking that we had made the best choice we could have for visiting Saigon.  What made us change our minds was partly the peacefulness of the hotel, partly Saigon itself and mostly the river trips we took on the hotel’s shuttle.  
On our first morning we had a lovely breakfast on the river before heading to the Cu Chi tunnels by boat with a guide that the hotel had arranged for us.  Traveling by boat was a great way to go and worth the extra cost.   The ½ day tour included a very generous lunch on the river by the tunnels and wine and beer on the boat back. Later, after a swim (and a search for someone to give us towels) we took their shuttle to town for dinner and found the location of the drop off perfect for walking, restaurants and shopping.  Coming back on it at night on the river was magical and romantic, even with our kids who sat at the bow of the boat taking in the wind and the scenery. The night time trip gave us a completely different perspective on life along the river’s banks and we were so happy we saw it.  On our second morning after another great breakfast we went back to town to meet the same guide and a car they had arranged to meet us at the pier.  We went around with them for most of the morning but soon realized that a guide isn’t really necessary in Saigon so we said good bye early, had a nice lunch at the Park Hyatt, did some more shopping and walking and caught the late afternoon boat back. I was curious about the Park Hyatt as I had decided between that and the An Lam during planning and while we really enjoyed our lunch and would’ve been happy at the Park Hyatt - the service and food was excellent and better than the An Lam, and it seemed better maintained - it wouldn’t have been as special. The area immediately around the Hyatt isn’t that nice to walk around and although it’s more convenient for sights and exploring, the quietness of the An Lam was better for us. We caught the shuttle again after lunch and then the kids swam while we packed up and we finally all had a nice dinner on the river that the manager had arranged for us before our arrival. The hotel was extremely generous in giving us a very late check-out of around 10 pm (for a fee, but still not a whole night’s charge) which we really appreciated. We were transferred to the airport after dinner, satisfied with our choice and relaxed after a three week trip to Indochina.
If you prefer unique experiences, I’d suggest it, but with the unique comes some inconsistencies in service and maintenance one would not expect at this level.

Liked: room, generous breakfast, speedboat shuttle, location
Disliked: not maintained as well as expected, service could have been a lot better, not quite up to 5* standards

Room Tip: A room right on the river might be worth it, but othewise I'd skip a pool suite. Our 'famil...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2013

Ho Chi Minh City might be described as an assault on the senses, a characteristic I do not mean as a negative judgement, because the city’s pervasive wafting smell of street pho and banh mi and its palpable energy is an incredible thrill. The constant honking of horns feels more januty lifestyle than indication of danger. And it’s relentless.

So the new An Lam Saigon River, a private residence turned lodging property comprised of 15 private villas, feels like the best kind of study in contrast just outside the madness.

Located just a 20-minute speedboat ride away from the well-traveled tourist sights of HCMC’s District 1, the property feels all retreat and serenity.

In the absence of a reception desk, each guest is assigned a personal on-call butler. Ours, Annie, was utterly gracious and perfectly attentive and present without a hint of overbearing. Sounds fancy, and totally was, but we did score a deal on the flash-sale site Vacationist.com that made it doable.

Our well-appointed and spacious villa had a private pool, but we preferred the common pool for its exposure to more sun. And indeed, “common” felt like a misnomer, given that we didn’t see more than four other guests anywhere on property during our two-day stay.

Vegetation hangs and vines daintily with impossible lushness throughout. We enjoyed a superlatively serene sunset from the alfresco lounge overlooking the flowing Saigon River, with its occasional lazy barge or boat floating past, and its steady stream of lush, unanchored greenery that meanders along with the current.

And so, it was when our speedboat whisked us so pleasantly along the water into the center of things that we truly appreciated the extent of the contrast.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Earby
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2013

In our opinion this hotel is ideally placed for a short stay in Ho Chi Minh away from the madness of the city.
The hotel is very relaxing with a perfect view over Saigon River.
The hotel provides a complimentary 20min speedboat ride into the centre of Ho Chi Minh which is a great way to see the surroundings.

The food at An Lam is very good with an excellent breakfast which is eaten by the riverside, very relaxing watching the boats and wildlife.

Our butler Amy was always on hand but never overbearing, she got it just right for us.

The room was very spacious with large living area, dressing room, bathroom and bedroom with balcony. The bed was large and very comfortable, complete with mosquito net (which is needed).

The spa was understaffed and our treatments seemed to end abruptly and could have been better. This was the only negative we had regarding our short stay.

The swimming pool was very quiet and inviting with plenty of loungers but unfortunately we did not have time to use them.

Transfers by the hotel to and from the airport were very comfortable and efficient.

If we were ever to return to Ho Chi Minh we would definately want to stay here again.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vincennes, France
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2013

We were hoping to find the same service as in the An Lam Ninh Van Bay were we stayed last year, but it seems that the change of ownership had a negative impact on the service ,
Under Epikurean everything was perfect but now it is just so so, The GM is new , it is the 3rd,one in less than one year , (bad sign!)
The rooms are nice but many small details are missing and I am pretty sure in a couple of years you will heavily notice the lack of maintenance.
Our private pool was not very clean!
Concerning the service , we were used to have our personnal butler almost sleeping in front of our door (joking) but at least be very discrete but present , here he is almost invisible .
And the restaurant !! the chef from Australia is supposed to be a Michelin star:!! but I think the stars are not shining anymore as the cuisine is just of a bistrot type , no invention, just basic, sword fish overcooked and dry, tuna carpaccio dry and served in very tiny portion, panacotta , very very basic , no research.
The only positive thing is the location, very secuded, very calm.
Should we go back? I doubt!! T.J. were are you, we are missing your profesionnalism

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami, FL
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013

Beautiful scenery, great rooms, super comfy bed. Great service.
Yes, there are small details they could iron out, but overall it was a great experience. Perfect place for a weekend close to Saigon.
We will definitely be back.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about An Lam Saigon River Private Residences

Address: 21/4 Khu Pho Trung | Vinh Phu, Ho Chi Minh City 10000, Vietnam
Phone Number:
Location: Vietnam > Ho Chi Minh City
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 371 Hotels in Ho Chi Minh City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — An Lam Saigon River Private Residences 5*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Peaceful and pure, An Lam Saigon River Private Residence is a captivating and exquisite luxury lifestyle boutique hotel. Located on the fringe of Ho Chi Minh City - a 15-minute boat ride from the city's center, the property blends utmost privacy with serenity and exclusivity. The property comprises seven luxurious riverside villas set in vibrant tropical gardens, and offering extraordinary views of the Saigon River. The villas host a total of seventeen guestrooms, each exclusively designed and furnished with its own contemporary identity and with elegant Vietnamese touches. Natural exotic wood floors set the tone where simplicity reigns, with elegant touches defining a sense of place and attention to the smallest of the details, adding to the unique charm of the resort. All villas are equipped with modern amenities that redefine a luxury lifestyle. The villas are designed with large terraces open to breathtaking views of the river. ... more   less 
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