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“Beautiful hotel, poor management” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Ancient House River Resort & Spa

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Ancient House River Resort & Spa
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   Hamlet 2, Cam Thanh ward, Hoi An 84 510, Vietnam   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #60 of 85 Hotels in Hoi An
Reuver, The Netherlands
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Beautiful hotel, poor management”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2011

It's really a beautiful and pretty new hotel. Great, supersized rooms and a nice pool. The location is outside of the town and away from the beach, but you can use the shuttle bus service wich runs a few times a day. If it runs......It's no problem to take a cab but they also use the bus for airport transport and when the bus is not running on schedule, the staff won't let you know. We waited a few times on the beach and in town in vain. Waste of time and no apologies from the hotel. Staff is friendly but since everyone is very young not really up for their task. Management is disinterested and can't organize. We travelled a few weeks in Vietnam and were pleasantly surprised by hotel staff everywhere except here. As said the hotel is beautiful but we think you can get more value for money in Hoi An. This one is a bit overprized.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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320 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (84)
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English first
Sydney, Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2011

I was in Vietnam for two weeks and stayed at Ancient House River Resort for four nights with my partner and 16 year old son.

The location is excellent, you may think your taxi driver is intentionally driving you off the beaten path but I promise you he isn't - the resort is located in a rural part of town on the outskirts of the beach and town (about 5-10 minutes drive to each). The resort backs onto the river which is lovely, there is decking there to sit and relax but it isn't set up for daytime use.

We had a superior room which was located on the ground floor with almost direct access to the pool and footsteps to the river decking which was excellent. The room also had an outdoor shower which is fantastic, especially at night showering under a full moon! The room also had a larger than king size bed plus a king single for our son, deep bath, plus a flat screen tv with cable channels and an added bonus of an in room laptop which was such a plus because it allowed you check flights, confirm accommodation and use a pc without having to going to the lobby to do so. The deluxe rooms were on level 2 and 3 and had views to the river, I would save yourself the extra $10 a night and book a superior room on the ground floor close to the pool and with an outdoor shower.

We had dinner on our first night in the restaurant and the food was terrible, service was poor and the cost over priced (for Asia). I would advise against eating in the restaurant. Breakfast is sufficient, there is an egg station, bread/rolls, pastries (which are all dry bread), cakes, fruit and a range of continental and Asian options.

The service is great but there is a struggle with english from most staff, only a few of the front desk girls speak ok english. I asked reception if they could arrange a cake and balloons for a surprise for my son's 16th birthday and was told that the manager would do that free which I was so grateful for. I told them that we'd be back by 3pm and that it was to be a surprise in our room. We came back at 3pm in which they said to all of us "your surprise of cake and balloons is set up in your room" - with my son standing there, clearly a surprise no more. They then asked me to pay $20 for the privilege. When we got back to the room they did a beautiful job of decorating the room and had a cake with his name on it and even had a bottle of wine with 3 glasses. Later I thanked them for all of their efforts but questioned why I was being charged $20 when I was told they would do it for free...no one could help. I tried to explain that $20 for a small sponge cake and balloons was a bit steep, but they explained that wine was provided also (which I never asked for, hello he turned 16 not 18!). But this is the issue with the communications barrier (we also tried to book a taxi to Da Nang airport through them and we kept getting conflicting information about whether it would cost $20 or $25 - we didn't care we just wanted an answer!!)

This hotel is in a nice location but without a decent restaurant and with no service around the pool area it can feel very isolated and you are constantly having to think ahead (where can I get a drink, how can I book a taxi into town, where can I get a pool towel etc).

The best thing we did and I highly recommend is hire a motor bike from across the road (cheaper than reception). I had never ridden one before (it's actually a scooter) but they're automatic and I had a ball. It meant we could ride to the beach and town whenever we felt like it and gave us the ultimate freedom. Riding around the rural villages around the hotel were an absolute treat. There is a petrol station on the way to the beach.

It's worth the stay here if you get a good price, just remember the english barrier, in-frequent service and you will have a good time - don't forget it is Asia!

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Singapore
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
44 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2011

I booked this hotel by mistake, thinking it was walking distance from the Hoi An downtown. It is actually a 5 - 10min bus ride out of the city in a quiet residential area with a tranquil location by the river. Although there is a free shuttle bus to town, you are quite limited by fixed schedule (and the last bus back to the resort at 9.20pm tend to be very packed, especially on weekends!) so for those who are very keen on the wonderful sights in the old town, this place is definitely not for you! However, if you are looking for a nice boutique hotel in a peaceful environment to get away from it all, then this place is just for you!

Rooms have a rustic and modern concept fusion, with some rough, wooden furnishing but smooth, marbled tiled floors.. very spacious though. Rooms on the 3rd floor have a balcony overlooking the swimming pool and the grounds with partial sea view. The room I got was more suited for couples, with the open bath concept so if you don't want your room mate to see everything while you shower, request for another type of room (if possible)! While the room was comfortable, there are a few inconveniences, such as the aircon being directly above the shower area. Also, not sure if it was an isolated incident but there was no warm water throughout my stay. No complains from me cos the cold shower was perfect for the warm and humid weather!

Wonderful service from the staff at Ancient House River Resort. Very professional, yet friendly and they make an effort to help you with your travel arrangements. I also like the turndown service where they make your room for the night, with a local folktale as a bedtime story. These nice little touches goes a long way, although they really need to relook into the grammar and vocab mistakes! ;)

Nice pool with jacuzzi. It will be nice to have more deck chairs around, especially on a warm summer afternoon when it is too warm to be walking around Hoi An and all you want to do is to laze by the pool. Alternatively, you can take the free shuttle to Cua Dai Beach, where staff can book a beach chair at the Zero Mile Beach Club for a nice day out at the beach. Note that the shuttle only run 3 times a day and the last bus leaves Cua Dai beach at 4.30pm. You can also rent bikes for free, but do notify the reception in advance, as there is limited stock!

Biggest disappointment was the breakfast. While the selection was pretty standard, the quality of the food can be better. I also wished there was some variation through the 3 days I was there.

In all, despite a few complains, I had a wonderful stay at the Ancient House Resort and it's worth a recommendation, although it is more suited for couples and those who don't mind chilling in a relaxed environment away from Hoi An city.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Seoul, South Korea
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2011

After staying at the Ancient House River Resort for 5 nights, our only regret is that we had to leave so soon! The resort is located in a very secluded area about 10 minutes from the town of Hoi An. At first we were a bit nervous about being so far from town, but soon realized that there really isn't much to see or do in Hoi An, except get clothes made or take a cooking class (or two, or three).

If you're adventurous, you can rent a motorbike from the shop across the street for about $10 per day (or go into town a get a similar bike for $5). One of our best experiences were riding around the rural areas and seeing true Vietnam - rice paddies, water buffalo, and palm plantations. However, if motorbikes aren't your thing, a shuttle bus leaves about 5 times a day to and from Hoi An, the resort and the beach. Taxi rides are also cheap, about $2 each way.

The only downside to staying at the Ancient House River Resort is that the staff members don't seem to go out of their way to help. For example, when relaxing by the pool, there is almost never someone nearby to ask for a drink or food. To get served, you have to search for a staff member inside, which is a bit of a turnoff if you're soaking wet from your dip! Also, most of the employees (except the manager and those at the front desk) have a poor command of English, which often causes communication problems.

Overall, we had a fantastic stay and wouldn't think of going anywhere else if we decide to stay in Hoi An again.

Tip: Book a car through the resort to pick you up from the airport before your arrive. Since the resort if off the beaten path, our driver spent about 30 minutes trying to find the place and then charged us an extra 100,000 dong for the ride. For the same price, you can have a car waiting for you.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saratoga, California
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2011

Lovely place, lovely people - just like I expected after reading all the reviews.

Rooms are spacious and clean and the folks there always have a warm smile on their face. There's nothing much one needs in a place like this when the idea is to just chill out - but they are always there to help if needed.

Nice old man (smiling too) across the street rents out scooters at 7 bucks a day, so mobility is not a problem at all if you can ride.

PS: excellent (free) wifi too!

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Liverpool, United Kingdom
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2011 via mobile

An amazing hotel nestled in the heart of rural Vietnam.

Beautiful, spacious rooms with a huge bath and outdoor shower. The little touches make it special.

Twice a day housekeeping is something all hotels should follow suit, fresh towels and a made up bed after lunch and upon return from dinner.

Service is fantastic, compared to other hotels I've stayed in hoi an( glory and pacific) no surly staff who try and make a quick buck off you.

My partner suffered a burn from a motorbike exhaust and the hotel arranged for a motorbike to fetch me to a pharmacy nearby to get medication.

Two things keep it from perfection. The location is remote, a 15-min ride by shuttle or 100,000 dong taxi fare. It can be annoying because the shuttle timings are not as frequent as you'd like meaning a 5dollar taxi ride each time you feel like having an early night.

Another thing was the really squeaky bed, but that might be a isolated incident.

Be sure to take the hotel airport pickup service, saves you the hassle of danang based taxi drivers getting lost.

A fantastic hotel and my favorite in hoi an. A real gem and worth the hassle of 5 dollar taxi rides.

  • Stayed August 2011
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Copenhagen, Denmark
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2011 via mobile

This place is really great if you want to relax and enjoy some hours at the pool.

The rooms are great, in a nice cosy integrated style. Cleaning was superb.

The pool is better than it looks on the pictures.

Restaurant is mediocre, but heavily priced. You can find much better in town. Breakfast is fine.

The resort provides free of charge shuttle bus to and from town.

Don't buy tours through the hotel. Tours are overpriced and can be bought in town for a fraction of the price.

We loved this place, and would have lovedvto extend our stay.

  • Stayed August 2011
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
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Additional Information about Ancient House River Resort & Spa

Address: Hamlet 2, Cam Thanh ward, Hoi An 84 510, Vietnam
Phone Number:
Location: Vietnam > Quang Nam Province > Hoi An
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #60 of 85 Hotels in Hoi An
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Ancient House River Resort & Spa 3.5*
Number of rooms: 36
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ancient House River Resort & Spa is an authentical 4 star hotel located in the quiet and peaceful Cam Thanh Village. We propose to our customer a large range of services, from transfer from/to airport, laundry service, to excursions. Join us for spending a sweet stay near the paisible Thu Bon River and discover Vietnamese way of living. We promess to make your stay special. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ancient House River Hotel Hoi An

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