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“physically detained in lobby by staff, among other issues” 1 of 5 bubbles
Review of Especen Hotel

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Especen Hotel
Ranked #190 of 578 Hotels in Hanoi
hanoi
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“physically detained in lobby by staff, among other issues”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 23, 2012

Myself and my partner are currently being detained, as i type, by hotel staff in their reception over a discussion about whether or not we should be financially responsible for a replacement toilet.

The toilet in our room got broken, it fell over during normal use because it was not attached to the floor in any way. They now insist we pay $95 for the replacement and are physically and forcibly detaining us in their reception until we do so.

We have asked them to call the police. They claim they have, and that we must now wait 2.5 hours at least for them to arrive.

We are in the legitimate Especen Hotel, based around Tho Xuong and Ngo Huyen Street. Not in a replica rip off hotel, this is the real one.

I am not making any progress with discussions with the staff. They get very aggressive and raise voices and claim i must have used the toilet in an unusual way and that it was fixed to the floor. I explain it was not fixed, and i did nothing that could be considered unusual. I was just wiping my bottom in the normal manner and the toilet was not fit for purpose in the first place.

They have stopped my partner leaving by the lobby doors by physically pushing her back and locking the doors. All she was doing was leaving to collect some bus tickets, and i explained that i was still here so they should let her go, but they pushed her back in and said nobody could leave until we paid.

During our stay we had previously thought the staff friendly, and had only been a little disappointed by the ripped sheets. We even found the painting that fell off the wall and hit my partner on the head while she was lying in bed more amusing than concerning.

But their attitude about the toilet was almost instantly aggressive as soon as the possibility that we might not immediately hand over whatever they wanted came up. Within minutes about 8 staff were here, some raising voices aggressively at us (including the owner) while we maintained reasonable volumes throughout, and a crowd of onlookers gathered to enjoy the show. Literally pushing women around and aggressively raising voices at me are things i find completely unacceptable.

We shall see how this turns out. Not an experience i'd recommend to anyone so far, that's for certain.

Room Tip: Get plumbing and building certifications so you can be sure things won't be dangerous as you dec...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank bod_2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
especen, Owner at Especen Hotel, responded to this review, September 12, 2012
Thanks so much for your review but there’s something we must talk clearly so other travelers can understand what the story is.

Your wife & you stayed in our hotel from 20th May. On 21st May, your wife noticed to our staff once the toilet broken & we had checked immediately. After checked & discussed with your wife, her agreed that the toilet was broken cause by your mistake (you or your wife, I’m not sure) while using it not normally. She also agreed to pay $95 for replacement and we change you to another room from 21st May.

While doing check-out process on 24th May, our receptionist ask you to pay for the replacement as agreement but you (not your wife) said that you didn’t see anything broken. Luckily, we have some pictures of the broken & replacement in a staff’s iPhone & we showed them to you. After saw those pictures, you turned to say that the toilet was broken before or it was not fixed to the floor and don't want to pay, too. We cannot image how the terrible would be if the toilet was broken or not fixed to the floor, smell would be seriously and no one can stay in that room. It is not fair when you driver your story to another story that way.

You also asked to call policemen & England Embassy. We had helped you to call them immediately but we can’t manage if they come quick or late. We also called England Embassy & let you talk directly with embassy staff. You even told to her that we hold you illegal but we didn’t. When policemen come & had some investigate, you agreed to pay for the broken toilet & wrote to the police’s report that you was not hold by our hotel. Your wife also wrote to the receipt that she agreed to pay for the broken toilet. We think that your wife know everything more clearly than you & she understand what the true story is.

You are not fair when said lie about your story, it is not nice. We still keep all your presentation documents & picture while you present the trust story to policemen. We can show it if anyone want to investigate.

As we had confirmed at many review response, that we will pay if any mistake or broken cause by us. We strongly promise for our quality of service!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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298 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    89
    127
    49
    18
    15
See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (42)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
31 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 2, 2012

Great location, clean, basic, and helpful staff. Nothing fancy, but works great as a hotel location that makes it easy to walk to the old quarter, the water puppets, St. Joseph's cathedral, the 36 old streets and much more!

Room Tip: Rooms right on the stairs are a little noisy as there is a window into the stairs, but it was only n...
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank jjtravel2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
aotearoa
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 24, 2012

i found the staff helpful & the rooms adequate. i asked for a room on the lower floors & got one.
no complaints.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank keet0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seoul, South Korea
Level Contributor
114 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 11, 2012

I have nothing good or bad to say about this place. They helped us when we asked, did a good job, did nothing bad. The rooms were basic/unspectacular, and we had heard of other hotels that had similar services at a lower price (we paid 24$). But for the convenience of organizing our hotel pickup, and sending us off well to the train station, they did a good job of easing us in to what can be a difficult city to navigate.

  • Stayed February 2012
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank NomadicBiker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 6, 2012

Girlfriend and I had booked 5 nights at this hotel but left after 4. We wanted to leave more because we had experienced all we wanted to in Hanoi but the hotel had run its race as well.. Hard to sleep not because of the obvious tooting but because of a water pump that started up every time someone flushed the toilet or had a shower. Not overly concerning just slightly frustrating.
Clean and nice staff.

  • Stayed February 2012
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank maxprice3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Swindon, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
27 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 6, 2012

My boyfriend and I stayed here for 3 nights, the hotel staff are incredibly friendly and helpful and the rooms are basic but nice. The beds were comfortable and the room and bathroom are clean (they are cleaned every day). We were supplied with clean towels three times during our stay!
One negative, it is a bit loud. Sound seems to travel from the reception area to the rooms, it was fine in the evenings but there is a computer in the lobby downstairs and the staff played music on it from quite early on in the morning... and sang along.
Internet is free (although the wifi was pretty unreliable) and so is printing! A bonus!
Great location, in walking distance of most things. Would highly recommend the day tour of Hanoi. (A reasonable $30 per person)
Overall a pleasant stay.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Hannah B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, Canada
Level Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 2, 2012

I booked an individual room here. It was ok : clean, with tv, fridge. It was really cold and the a/c could not heat the place. Although I know that in superior room, it can heat.

Overall, I was a little deceived that they were not serving breakfast, the wifi did not work in my room, and that my room was so cold (I had to sleep with hat and gloves).

On the other side, the staff was really helpful and nice to me. When I came back from my tour to Sapa, they let me take a shower in one great room, even if I had checkout days ago.

So if you plan to stay at this hotel (which is very well situated by the way), I would recommend not to take an individual room, but a nicer one.

  • Stayed January 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Caroline B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Especen Hotel

Property: Especen Hotel
Address: 28 Tho Xuong street, Hoan Kiem district, Hanoi 10000, Vietnam
Location: Vietnam > Hanoi
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#22 Best Value Hotel in Hanoi
#69 Romantic Hotel in Hanoi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Especen Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 29
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Especen hotel is one of the first mini hotels built since the 1990s located in the center of the Old Quarter in Hanoi. It is just a stone’s throw from St. Joseph's Church (Cathedral) on a quiet alley off of Au Trieu Street. This convenient location allows you to be just a 5 minute walk from Hoan Kiem Lake, Thang Long water puppet theater, night market, Vietnam Airlines booking office & Quang Trung bus stop (for service to Noi Bai International airport). You can get to all the famous travel points, Eroupean and Vietnamese traditional restaurants, craft shops, pubs and art galleries,... as soon as you step on to the main road. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Especen Hotel Hanoi

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