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“Staff is a big problem (dishonest and incompetent)-- hotel is a poor value”

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Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel
Ranked #10 of 74 Hotels in Da Lat
Certificate of Excellence
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
20 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Staff is a big problem (dishonest and incompetent)-- hotel is a poor value”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 27, 2014

We stayed here on the night of 1/31/14. You can see by my reviews that I am not a complainer. In advance of our stay, I could get no emails answered by the hotel and eventually had to reach out to the chain's HQ to get an answer to an inquiry about offered airport transport.There were hardly any other guests but, nonetheless, when we arrived reception was surly and slow. The concierge could not communicate and had incorrect or no information about Dalat. The room was gloomy, small and very cold.

Worst was a lack of honesty and responsiveness. When we checked out we made a terrible blunder and left $400 in cash in the safety deposit box. Our mistake! Nonetheless, we realized it immediately but, when we went back to the room, it was already gone. Little effort was made to locate the person(s) who might have just taken it and the one denial from the housekeeper who was already missing but reached by phone was accepted at face value. We had a flight to catch and left. We repeatedly wrote and asked for follow-up and never received the courtesy of any communication whatsoever.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank PT826
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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253 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (63)
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Sydney
Level Contributor
81 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 22, 2014

Step back in time when you enter the grand hotel that is the Palace in Dalat. Other reviewers have commented that it is outdated but this is ridiculous - it is a piece of history and if you don't want that don't stay here.
We were lucky enough to reserve a suite with views over the lake - and were very amused when we saw we were in Robert De Niro's suite so named as he had stayed in our room in 1974.
The period furniture and decor is memorable as is the bathroom - okay if you're not careful the shower will spray the floor but how many times does one get a claw foot bath in a hotel?

Afternoon tea on the terrace was a joy but breakfast buffet tiny so we opted to go out to the food court above the markets - not easy to find but make sure you ask a market stall vendor who will point to the stairs.

Larry's Bar was simply weird - was expecting something mirroring the history of the rest of the hotel but it was a basement bar reminiscent of many English style pubs. Odd.

Dalat itself - not quite lived up to the hopes I had had. It is very pretty and without the humidity of other Vietnamese cities, the cable car ride is stunning but after a couple of days we'd had enough.

One must do (or eat) - the crispy little rice paper pancakes/pizzas sold by ladies with their little grills by the lake costing about 50 cents. Possibly one of the best things I ever eaten and unfortunately will never find anywhere else in the world again!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank hubey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aude, France
Level Contributor
56 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 7, 2014

Dalat is one of the most beautiful cities we have ever come across in South East Asia, and it was a joy simply to be there, the fact that it was during the Tet celebrations just increased our enjoyment.

The Palace Hotel dominates the lakeside, and we have no doubts that it is something special. If you are looking for an international clone, then it is certainly not that. In fact, you can go through the list and it doesn’t fit into any category.

Almost Art Deco on the outside, with superb views across their gardens and the lake, the interior is straight out of early 20th century Versailles, reinforced by all the (rather poor) copies of French painting on the walls. Reception and public rooms are dark wood, quiet and attractive in their own way, the rooms something from the last century (I wonder if they still light the open fire in the room, or if “Elf & Safety” has reached even this outpost). The bathrooms almost defy description and do not meet any of the current demands, poor lighting, a shower that puts more water on the floor than in the bath, and decor out of an old film.

All in all, a throw-back - and we loved it.

Remember we were there on vacation, so were looking to enjoy our experiences, and this was certainly one of them. The staff were superb, the room extremely comfortable, and, an almost impossible ask in many parts of Vietnam, extremely quiet, although we didn’t have a lake view, a pity as it meant we missed the New Year’s Eve firework display over the lake.

It was within easy walk of Dalat centre, and the lake, and we had a pleasant interlude sitting on one of the recliners in front of the hotel, enjoying tea and ice cream.

Due to it being New Year’s Eve, we ate one night in the hotel. Horrendously expensive for Vietnam, but a reasonable choice, both for the food and winelist, well served and very tasty.

The only less than superb part was the breakfast, which was not up to the standard we experienced in other hotels in the country, with a small choice and less than rapid service, but that may simply be down to the time of year, and the low occupancy level.

In conclusion, the Palace was an extremely enjoyable experience for us, but I can understand the frustrations of some of the previous reviewers who were obviously looking for something less eccentric in an hotel.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank briangb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bamberg, Germany
Level Contributor
70 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 30, 2014

We stayed in this hotel only one night on our tour through whole Vietnam during Lunar New Year.
There was great regret when entering the room, that we could only stay here for one night.
The view is fantastic, the rooms are big, have high walls and the beds are comfortable. When seeing the furniture, bathroom and telephone you feel set back into time. While having a hub phone on the desk, the Wi-Fi connection in the room and around the hotel is fast and quick to connect.

People in the hotel were generally quite friendly and tried to help whenever they could.

The breakfast buffet was also very rich and had any thing you would need for breakfast, as an Asian visitor or as a Western visitor.

The price for the room was relatively high for Vietnam, however normal for a 5 star hotel.

One thing where I felt the style of the French Colony was followed too strictly, was in the bathroom. The shower place was a bathtub, which however did not have any things to completely cover the tub when showering, so when not being too careful the whole bath was flooded.

The rooms did not include any air conditioning, if you like it really cold (20 º cold) during the summer, however because of the high walls and the good building structure you do not really need an AC in the room. The temperature stays constant at a comfortable room temperature around 24º C.

Room Tip: Choose the room facing the lake side.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank lulu10007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland, New Zealand
Level Contributor
18 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 12, 2014

We spent one night at the sumptuous Palace Hotel, as a bit of a luxurious treat after staying in $20/night hotels everywhere else in Vietnam. I am often skeptical about the true value for money of 5-star, exorbitantly expensive hotels, but the Palace Hotel seemed to defy expectations.
The defining characteristic of the Palace hotel, in comparison to other equally-starred establishments, is the feeling of genuine heritage. Almost everything about the hotel harks back to its glory days in a French high-altitude retreat.
It is located in the centre of Dalat, with views over the lake. About a ten minute walk from the Dalat markets (highly recommended) and the central city.
The beautiful wooden furniture was—if not original, then—very tastefully styled, as was the bathroom with its delicate ceramics, and brass fittings. The service was impeccable, and the amenities well-provisioned; our continental breakfast, while (of course) overpriced, was delicious and substantial; the linen provided was clean, rich, and comfortable.
The library was a highlight, while it did not contain many books, it was a comfortable place to read and ponder, as was Larry's Bar with it's informal feel and possibly the smallest pool table I have ever seen in my life. Shame it was so deserted—we were the only people in there (that was mostly the case in every bar we went to in Dalat).
We did not try the lauded Rabelais restaurant. It does not seem to offer any vegetarian options, and to be honest, I don't really enjoy the overly rich haute cuisine served in such places.
Also, just in passing, WiFi in our room was patchy, at best. Better access can be found in the lobby or business centre.
Overall, a nice stay. Would recommend to those who are fond of luxury, and interested by the hotel's (and Dalat's) history.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Olliex3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston
Level Contributor
211 reviews
205 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 177 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 9, 2014

This hotel has been around for almost a hundred years but its original beauty and glorious past seems to be well maintained and kept up by the current management team! All rooms are furnished with the original furniture and fixtures...up to the shower head! They're all positioned such that each of them has the best view of the Xuan Huong lake below or the surrounding resort town! From the hotel, it's a short 10 or 15 minute leisure walk to Dalat central market or the French Indochina governor mansion. The service has been as good as ever and the staff try their best to make sure the guest has the most comfortable and pleasant stay possible. Staying at this hotel, you would enjoy the history that comes with it as much as the art works and all the mahogany furniture left over from the French colonial past!

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Nathantran
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
138 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 30, 2013

This place is not cheap by Vietnam standards but it is old world luxury through and through. The French restaurant is excellent though again pretty expensive but if you are in Dalat and want to splash out you have to try it. Worth coming up for lunch or drinks just to have a look around.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Sparklehorse68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel

Property: Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel
Address: 2 Tran Phu Street, Ward 3, Da Lat, Vietnam (Formerly Sofitel Dalat Palace)
Location: Vietnam > Lam Dong Province > Da Lat
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Da Lat
#4 Family Hotel in Da Lat
#4 Romantic Hotel in Da Lat
#5 Spa Hotel in Da Lat
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 43
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In the heart of Dalat stands a remarkable residential address – Dalat Palace. Built in the early part of the last century, in 1922, Dalat Palace offers luxurious elegance, gracious service and French colonial charm.The Hotel is located right in the city centre, within walking distance of the Dalat Market, shops, restaurants and tourist attractions. It is 30 minutes drive from Lien Khuong Airport.43 rooms of elegant colonial style feature ornate furnishings, wood floors, floor-to-ceiling French doors, chandeliers, cast iron bathtub, a working fireplace, luxurious bathroom amenities and high-speed Internet access. Each room offers a Xuan Huong lake view or Dalat Cathedral view. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Accor Dalat Palace
Sofitel Dalat
Dalat Sofitel

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