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“Love it ! Like Staying with Family” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Dragon Palace Hotel

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Dragon Palace Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   173 Pham Ngu Lao St., Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (Formerly Giant Dragon Hotel)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #144 of 351 hotels in Ho Chi Minh City
Darwin, Australia
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
66 helpful votes 66 helpful votes
“Love it ! Like Staying with Family”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2008

Firstly, I think the earlier review by member 'dirtmay' is a bit over the top.
There is an accusation made that there was theft by staff. While I recently stayed there, my locked door was opened while I was inside. A person used a card to jemmy the door latch, and that was not a staff member but another guest (from U.K.) at the hotel. The confrontation resulted in the guy getting booted out.
All hotels in Asia advise valuable items should be kept in their secure safes.
With so much poverty in Vietnam, desperate people will steal. While I am not forgiving them, travelers must take extra precautions.
In all of Vietnam, the people do not want to involve police. Many of the police in HCMC are very corrupt. When I was assaulted by a fellow traveler, Police wanted me to pay them to make a report, but said they would do no more than that. They also said they would go to the bar where I was assaulted and would have them pay money to police for allowing me to be assaulted.,
Vietnam is a different country and as such, different circumstances prevail, not just at Giant Dragon Hotel, but throughout Vietnam.

As an earlier review by 'myvietnamid' said, staying at Giant Dragon is like staying with family. It's 2 star, clean, tidy and the staff are fantastic. I paid $15 a night for the room, but that was increased to $18 a night after a new elevator was installed. Had no problems with internet from the hotel, but the ISP themselves were trouble. Internet and cell phones are unreliable all over Vietnam.
The country of Vietnam is regarded as the poorest across Asia, so do not expect the best all the time.
I can honestly say that I have stayed in many hotels across Vietnam after visiting regularly for past 3 years, and I always return to Giant Dragon Hotel when in HCMC. I have stayed in 3 and 4 star hotels that offered worse service than Giant Dragon.
I have left a small quantity of cash on the bedside table which was not touched by staff. (I do that deliberately as an integrity test) However, that same 2 or 3 dollars has disappeared at 3 and 4 star hotels elsewhere.



My Summary-

POSITIVES -
* Location
* Helpful, friendly and honest staff
* Budget Price
* Clean and tidy
* Quiet considering near main street and rooms at other hotels not as quiet.
* Maintenance issues were repaired immediately. (leaking toilet)

NEGATIVES -
* Dollar or two more than other nearby hotels of similar quality
* Electricity and internet frequently dropping out (once or twice a day for a few minutes, but not fault of the hotel)
* Only higher priced premium rooms have windows (but they suffer from street noise)
* New elevator installed while I was there was frequently down for maintenance.

Stayed October 2008
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90 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (14)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Vancouver, Canada
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2008

I read some of the other reviews about the hotel. I can say you get what you pay for. The $20 rooms were dank and crowded, so if you spend $40 and get the suite (and you're high enough), you'll get a great view and large comfortable room. The staff is friendly enough and in good location, at least for touristic purposes.

  • Liked — it's location
  • Disliked — lack of Internet. Most hotels in Saigon have them now, I'm not sure why this one doesn't.
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Belfast, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2008

Strong words but the facts seem to speak for themselves.
We spent 3 nights in this place and it left a very bad taste in my mouth for the whole of Vietnam, which is sad because I had a great time in the country.
We arrived in Saigon and checked out a few hotels. We thought this one would be best given that the room weren't directly on the street. I left my ruck sack behind the front desk for around 10mins and that's when the trouble started. When I got my bag back I left it in the room and ventured out for the day. When I returned my Ipod had been stolen. I contacted reception who tried to play the matter down. They actually tried to stop me contacting the police! My girlfriend also had money taken from her purse. When we checked out they tried to charge us for items in the mini bar that we never used. We also used the telephone in the room but we used an international calling card which means the hotel aren't charged. They were extremely rude and demanded we pay the full cost of the call because we didn't let them know we had a card. After a tense stand off they refused to give our passports back! Only because we had a bus waiting to take us to Cambodia did we pay the bill to leave this horrible place.
whatever anyone does please don't stay here.
Other reviews talk about the facilties not being what they are in the brochure. They're spot on. No jacuzzi and the menu they use in the restaurant is a farce. They don't even make half the stuff on there. They actually think its quite funny when a customer orders something and they look at you as if you've 3 heads

  • Liked — Leaving
  • Disliked — Theft by staff
  • Stayed January 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Adelaide
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
73 helpful votes 73 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2007

Booked through a shonky website who came to the hotel during our stay on a moped and demanded we give them our money instead of the hotel. Farsical.
The hotel is OK but it was made worse by the pictures of a bygone era, including a non-existant jacuzzi and other features that no longer exist.
It rained heavily every night and our room leaked so much so that the entire floor flooded to half and inch deep. We had to keep everything on our bed. When we went to complain we saw that the leaks were not isolated to our rooms but rather the entire floor.
Not ideal and the restaurant was terrible. The worst hotel we have stayed in throughout Asia.

  • Liked — view
  • Disliked — everything
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Toronto
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2007

Giant Dragon seems like the spot many travellers stay at. It is a bit old and rough around the edges but it's in the best location in Saigon and for $20 a night, includes a nice bed with private bathroom and satelite tv. Includes breakfast as well. Would definitely stay here again. There is a nice guy at the desk named Lam (or something like that) who is very helpful but don't get him talking too much or he'll never stop.

  • Stayed July 2007
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 23, 2007

The Owner is a really big hearted bloke. Some of the staff are his family. They all went out of their way to help me in every way. I felt like I was staying with friends. The rooms are smallish but comfortable and clean.
Having stayed at many different hotels in my frequent trips to SaiGon, this rates as Number One for me.

The little cafe across the lane serves fantastic cheap meals and drinks, and is a frequent hangout for Aussies, Brits and Americans who live/work in Saigon.

Word of wisdom... stay away from that girl Mai at BAC bar down the lane from the Hotel. She pretends to be single and looking for a boyfriend. Reality is she is a taxi-girl, deceiving guys. Currently has 3 men she is engaged to who don't know about each other who all unwittingly send her $200 a month to support her, while she continues turning tricks at $100.

  • Liked — The staff and Location
  • Stayed May 2007, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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London
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2006

We stayed here because a fellow traveller recommended it and it's ok. A good location for backpacker conveniences - internet, bars, restaurants and close to sights.

Rooms are basic but clean, our air con didn't work, well it was timed to go on for 15 minutes then turn itself off, we had to trip a switch to keep restarting it! Shower was powerful though.

We got back to the hotel at about 11pm and it was shut up for the night, we had to bang on the shutters to wake reception up to let us in.

Breakfast is in a cafe next door, again ok - bread and jam.

I would recommend it if you are planning a short stay in HCMC and don't want to spend too much money on accommodation.

  • Stayed September 2006
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Dragon Palace Hotel

Address: 173 Pham Ngu Lao St., Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (Formerly Giant Dragon Hotel)
Location: Vietnam > Ho Chi Minh City
Hotel Style:
Ranked #144 of 351 hotels in Ho Chi Minh City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Dragon Palace Hotel 3*
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Also Known As:
Hotel Giant Dragon
Giant Dragon Hotel

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