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“Manager needs anger management”
Review of Box Hotel

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Box Hotel
Ranked #188 of 586 Hotels in Hanoi
Level Contributor
3 reviews
“Manager needs anger management”
Reviewed June 17, 2013

We were referred this hotel by the tour operator at the front as it was cheap and had free beer!! We purchased two tours through the company and they offered us a free nights accommodation between tours - fantastic! Upon our return from sapa at 4:30am there was no transport to pick us up as there had been on the way there - no problem tho between 8 travelers taxi was 15.000D each. Upon arrival at hotel we were advised there would be no room until 10am, although we had been advised there would be a room when we got off bus we accepted this and were offered a room to shower in. In the room I found the manager asleep in the bedroom and we suggested we will wait until 10 for our cleaned room. While waiting in the foyer 2 other travels arrived asked for a room were shown a room and checked in! When we asked how this happened we were told our room would be ready at 11! We tried to work out it had the time had increased to avail. We were offered another tiny room with staff belongings in to shower - it was filthy so declined.

Next the manager arrived advising us there were no rooms to after 12 at this stage our group of 5 were irate as we had already been waiting 5 hours. At this stage the conversation got VERY heated and the manager flipped his lid! Nothing was resolved until someone checked out about 11. Next day when packing noticed our clothes were not even cleaned and when asked to pay we advised they had not been cleaned properly. To which the manager yelled I should have stayed in a 5 star resort if I wanted clean clothes and proceed to repeatedly swear at me and state the cost is minimal why can't I just pay it. Clothes appeared to have been aired, sprayed with some smelly thing then ironed!

Would avoid this place if you can. The bus company they use from Hanoi to sapa also have no one that speaks English and we had a driver who inappropriately touched one of us and then tried to tell us to get off the bus in the middle of no where claiming it was Hanoi at 3 am then suggested a young female travel come and sit with him!!

In summary very stressful few days and really not worth the drama! I must state all other staff beside manager were lovely and just trying to do their job :)

  • Stayed June 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Genevieveemily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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196 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Polish first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Niort, France
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed March 20, 2013

I was in Hanoi some days ago and stayed in thís hotel for 4 nights.
The manager and the staff are friendly and always at our disposition.
Room ís confortable and service good too.
May be i ll return there when i ll back Ha Noi next year

Room Tip: Deluxe... others are good too
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank vungtauhcm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed January 27, 2013

Hotel room is average but we wont expect more for USD 18/night/room with breakfast. The location is very strategic. There is night market on every Fri/Sat/Sun nights. So be sure to stay at old quarters. However, the best thing about the hotel is really the service. Ken is really helpful and supportive for tourists especially needed in Hanoi whose people generally does not converse in English. He brought us for local breakfast and even arrange tours for us at the best price (yes, it is true, we compared it). He gave alot of good advises and help us to save money too. He even helped us to get some souveniers. Besides that, James, his assistant is also very helpful and proactive.

One thing we have to say, maybe because the weather or occupancy is high, they ran out of blankets and did not prepare the room in time for our subsequent check-in. They managed to resolve that for us, but couldn't resolve for the other room.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank chokvuisoon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Banjamasin-Borneo
1 review
Reviewed January 2, 2013

I have been to hanoi over 8 times, and a friend past me the details of Ken, the location is superb, the rooms clean and presentable, house keeping was always done well...... I felt safe and secure at all times, Ken was available 24 hours a day, a great host and a nice family man.....His wife was really friendly and I wish them well on their new baby which should be arriving any day soon......look forward to seeing you next year and sampling more of that amazing Beef Noodle soup.

all the Best Eric (Manchester England)

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Eric M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
60 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed September 19, 2012

The main attraction for us for this hotel was the location. Its well located in the old quarter and pretty well priced. We negotiated down to $14 a person, so a very good value in the area. The locations great, but the hotel is rather old and worn down. Some rooms were rather musty and for the most part typical of a Vietnamese hotel. The ACs in the rooms were pretty new and they did keep the rooms very clean.

The staff was also very friendly to us. They didn't try to push us any tours or anything and were helpful when we asked them for advice. After we left on a Halong Bay trip, we came back to the hotel and they upgraded us to the larger double room for the same price. My only other quam with this place apart from being old is that they play a little loose with the exchange rate, but at the end of the day it'll cost you another 50 cents so not a big deal.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Hobo003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed May 28, 2012

Let’s be very straight forward about this. The term “hotel” is often used very loosely in Vietnam and more than often, if it does not have a big brand/chain name like Inter-Continental or Hilton in front, you’re most likely getting a room in a guest house. I’m all in favour of supporting mom and pop guest houses but Emperor is clearly one that has gone commercial. Left to the devices of its helpers, it offers only the bare essentials, without tipping over into the unacceptable.

The room was tidy and the sheets were slightly stained (I’m hoping it was washed and those could not be removed) but smelled rather fresh. I was just happy there were no bugs. There was wifi and hot water provided and that’s pretty basic in any room.

What really left a nasty aftertaste was the poor service. We had paid for airport transfer but on arriving at the airport, our pickup was nowhere in sight for 2 hours. After repeated pricy calls, we finally found him smoking at the open air car park. This inefficiency was repeated when we were about to depart. We were told that our ride had been conveniently stopped at a highway, and not able to pick us up and send us to the airport, just 2 hours before our plane departs. Lapsing into a minor panic attack, we turned to the assistant who returned with a clueless look and no alternative in sight. Fortunately for us, this was very easily resolved, with the friends we made at Hanoi Back Packer’s Hostel (along Ma May road). A simple call, 8USD and 10 minutes later, we were quickly whisked off and got on our flight home with just minutes to spare.

I think the low quality of service of a guest house is very telling when you have to go to another establishment for a simple thing like booking a taxi.The only “highlight” of our stay there was watching a fight break out in a club directly across Emperor Hotel.

I probably would not stay there again; and I’m disappointed that Emperor Hotel falls very short from the royal treatment it promises its guests.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MelZhuo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
29 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed May 8, 2012 via mobile

We stayed in Hanoi for three nights. We booked a car from the airport for $20US, and the driver who picked us up in his minivan had also arranged to pick up a family of four. Luckily, we only had small luggage, as we had to really squeeze into the car. We also had to wait while the family was dropped off at a different hotel. Not a huge deal, but this was disappointing, as we were paying more than the cost of a taxi. Be aware that there is a tour office in front, which you must walk through to reach the hotel reception, so the hotel itself is a bit hard to spot if you don't know what to look for.

The pros:
We had a triple room for $20/night, and were satisfied with it overall. The room was huge, reasonably clean, and it was nice to have a mini fridge. (I prefer this to a stocked minibar, as I can fill it with whatever I like, and not at inflated prices.)

The night receptionist is helpful and pleasant. When we requested fruit for breakfast, he ran out and got us some mangos and pineapple right away. He also helped arrange train tickets (yes, there was a fee, but it was worth it to us to avoid the hassle of getting them elsewhere).

Location is good - lots of shops and restaurants in easy walking distance, but the rooms aren't right on the main street, so it was very quiet at night. Just a couple blocks from the night market. Basic amenities like soap, towels (albeit somewhat shabby), shampoo, and even toothbrushes provided. A/C in our room worked well.

The cons:
We were on the third floor, and the stairs up were dark and stuffy. The Internet on our floor never worked. We tried resetting the router to no avail, and the hotel didn't seem very proactive about fixing it. Wifi worked in the lobby, but it wasn't air conditioned, was often smoky, and it was a pain to walk down and back up three flights of stairs every time we wanted to check something online.

The water stopped working altogether for several hours one day. To be fair, we were told that it was out on the whole block.

The bathroom didn't smell great. Pillows weren't very clean. Mattress wasn't very good. Our room didn't really have a window, just a balconette with solid wood doors that looked directly out onto walls and windows.

The guy working at the front desk most of the time smokes in the lobby and is much less proactive/friendly than the guy who was working the night and morning of our arrival.

Not a particularly nice common area, no ambience, but a decent/basic place to stay. I'm glad we stayed there instead of the nearby backpacker hostel, which seemed to be a nonstop party, and not really our scene.

Note: the booklet in the room indicates that laundry service is charged by piece, but it is in fact charged by weight (35k per kilo). Many nearby places do it for 20k/kilo.

  • Stayed May 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Procrastinasian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hanoiemperorhotel, Manager at Box Hotel, responded to this review, May 9, 2012
Dear Sir/madam

Thank you for your time to post your review. This will help us with our services in future.

Our normal pick up rate is $ 15 usd, since you arrived at 1.00 am in the moring we did ask for the extra $ 5 usd for our driver for staying late at night waiting for you. You were kind to aggree this.

We checked with the driver who picked you up that night, He admited that what you said was true. He did put more guests to earn some extra money himself. This is really not right for you since you booked a private taxi.

We wish you had told us during your 3 nights of stay here. In fact, we dont know this happened until today. We are so sorry for you inconvience.

If we can ever welcome you again we will offer the airport pick up for Free of charge in return.

We wish you a good life!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Box Hotel

Property: Box Hotel
Address: 16 Hang Buom Street | Hoan Kiem, Hanoi 8443, Vietnam (Formerly Hanoi Emperor Hotel)
Location: Vietnam > Hanoi
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #188 of 586 Hotels in Hanoi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Box Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 12
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