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“Very Pleasantly Surprised” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hotel Equatorial Ho Chi Minh City

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Hotel Equatorial Ho Chi Minh City
Ranked #27 of 448 Hotels in Ho Chi Minh City
Certificate of Excellence
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
47 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Very Pleasantly Surprised”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 23, 2014

Having read a number of reviews before going we were very pleasantly surprised with this very good hotel. It is certainly worthwhile to spend the relatively little extra for a room on the club floor. The benefits that come with that are excellent (the complimentary drinks and food nightly, the discounts to hotel facilities and free wifi in room to mention some) as well as a very comfortable room with lovely high ceilings. The staff are invariably pleasant and helpful and the general facilities are excellent. It is not in District 1 but that is not a problem. There is a shuttle bus to and from the centre of District 1, that stops at many of the major attractions, however a taxi to or from District 1, including tip, is a very reasonable $A 5.00. The surrounding area to the hotel does not have the upmarket stores etc. however is teeming with restaurants and shops that are much more indicative of how the Vietnamese people live. It is fascinating to walk around that area. We also had an excellent meal at the Orientica restaurant in the hotel one night. I would not hesitate to recommend this hotel.

Room Tip: The club floor is very worthwhile.
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Robert B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,021 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (227)
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English first
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
127 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 22, 2014

Stayed at this Hotel at the end of our Vietnam holiday and glad it was the end and not the beginning. It appears very smart and trendy in the downstairs foyer but we where in the Club rooms and shocked that paying for an upgrade into a club room only bought us a very small room that was old and had been renovated. The club level reception staff are not friendly nor very helpful, which was a shame as we are used to lovely staff. When I asked for a jug of cold milk I was told in no uncertain terms I should ring housekeeping but on this ONE occasion the reception staff would do it for me.....I did a double take, yes this is club level...
The staff within the club area are way too authoritarian, they didn't like guests taking cold water or soft drinks from the club area to the rooms (who knows for what reason) thats why we pay for upgrades. The staff stand over your ever move in the club lounge and watch you like hawks, the service was good but who needs staff to watch over you so closely?
The afternoon canapes leaves a lot to be desired, it was easy to tell no one was impressed as 95% to 98% of the food was left at the end of each day of our stay.
The pool is very small for the number of rooms but at least there is a pool.
If you use the Spa, check your bill first, they tried to make us pay for massages even though we were prepaid.
Finally if you give this hotel a Credit card for pre authority and pay cash make sure you check your credit card account asap, we were charged the day before we even left the hotel!!!! And after several emails back and forth and one week later they contacted their bank and got them to credit us back our money but not the international transfer fee...
Last comment when we go back to Vietnam we will definitely stay in District 1, much better area, more to see and do all within walking distance. You drive all the way through District 1 to get to this hotel, why bother???
No, we won't be back to this hotel, Ho Chi Minh has too many more options, District 1.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Lisa L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, West Australia
Level Contributor
63 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 21, 2014

We had a couple of nights here en route to Hon Tre Island. The staff were really great, the room was great too. We were in the club section and that was a real bonus. It is our third time to HCMC City and it's a fascinating place. Yes, the Equatorial is not right in the middle of District One, but it is next door and it is no drama getting where you want to go, the shuttle bus works well, but if you miss it heading hime, it is no big deal to get a cab which is cheap and safer than motor bikes and other means of transport! The included transfer from and back to the airport was much appreciated. Everything went well. We had magnificent meal at the Orientica within the hotel. Wow! The seafood was so fresh and well prepared and presented. The staff were good and the whole medal was just perfect. I treated myself to a facial, massage and foot massage and it was a very relaxing couple of hours. We can't fault this hotel and recommend it for anyone.

Room Tip: Club overlooking the pool and away from the reception area.
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank elaine533
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 20, 2014

I arrived in HCMC today. I was met by a warm cloak of air and a sweet and typically asian scent which I can never quite pinpoint but which makes me feel instantly at home. More so at home then when i am at home, ironically.

From the Equatorial i ventured into town on the Shuttle and looked around one of the shopping malls (Vincom) which as pleasant without being in any way inspiring. More evocative was the gentle flow of traffic and alluring side streets. The traffic has a strange of way of easing its way through to its destination with no real effort. The forced aggression seen on european roads in nowhere to be seen. The constant beeping of the horns doesn't imply even the lightest tone of irritation but instead seems to be a genteel reminder to other road users not to veer from their path (or occasionally, more pronounced beeps might mean 'i'm coming through!' There is something very relaxing, very buddhist inherent in the Vietnamese (and in general South Asian) road etiquette which i find very attractive.

After a light lunch in the cellar of the Vincom shopping centre (yes i was also appalled at myself for not choosing somewhere more authentically vietnamese or 'street') which included bun bo noodle soup with a variety of meats and reconstituted fish and some rice noodle wraps of beef (both tasty without being as delicious as i was hopping my first vietnamese meal to be) I headed back to the hotel. I slept for 4 hours to shake of the jet lag and then walked the streets locally to find an eatery. Although there are plenty of very simple side street eateries (it would be wrong to call them restaurants) where, i'm sure the food would have been delicious, I headed back to the hotel where the menus looked somehow more familiar.

I reviewed the seafood restaurant on the second floor which looked amazing and i'm sure i will eat there before i leave in a few days time, and then ended up opting for the buffet on the ground floor.

The deal was to eat and drink as much as you like for $44USD. that's expensive for Vietnam but I decided to make an evening of it after pacing up and down the buffet selection.

Wow.

I started off with the sashimi. there was tuna, some other white fish and salmon. The tuna and whitefish were delicious. The salmon was other worldly! I have eaten in the best sushi restaurants in the UK and some good ones in LA and New York but this salmon was truly out of this world. I went back to the counter 3 times for more.

I had spotted lobster with cheese so sampled a 'tail' which was very tasty. I then moved into the bbq grill and had tiger prawn, rare cooked beef, skewers of lamb and pork. the lamb was particularly memorable and came with a sort of lime salt which massively enhanced the flavour (if you don't get it, ask for it!). The praw was delicious and beef and pork were nice. Starting to feel self conscious about the fact i was now heading up for my 4th course (and had drank 2 beers and 3 glasses of deliciously sumptuous chilean red wine which was one of the nicest wines i have had in years and was all included within the meal) I had eyed up some American style beef chuck steak. I took a nice rare slice carved off for me by the chef and washed it down with the brown coloured sauce provided and some potato wedges and it was very good. In fact it was better than that.

After another visit to the sashimi counter for more salmon and some gelatinous deep fried rice and some more lamb skewer I started to think it was time to wind down, at least as far as the main course was concerned.

I had been attentively topped up another 3 or 4 times, my beautifully roomed chilean red, never getting down below 1/4 full. They were keen for me to enjoy the meal and i must have looked like i was there to do so! I was not given a choice of wine (other than colour) but i would not have wanted anything else. It was deliciously smooth and went amazing well with the salmon and the meat (interestingly).

I was offered a coffee and having heard about Vietnamese coffee decided to take a double espresso. I added a few sachets of brown sugar and it was undoubtedly the finest espresso i have tasted (one up from Harrods). I chose a selection of desserts including bread and butter pudding with a delicious thin vanillas sauce and some banana cake and creme caramel. They were all very nice without being remarkable.

Was there any downside to the meal?

The only thing which stands out was the fact that some of the buffet food (as is always the case with buffets) can hang around for a bit and therefore not be piping hot. I actually like my food to have been piping hot, but to eat it when it has cooled a bit, so it was not a problem for me, but i know some people who would have wanted it to be served straight from the kitchen to the plate. I think that's possible if you keep an eye out on the buffet and what is being replenished when.

Anyway, i thought i would give a fairly long review because I LOVED my meal. I soaked it up and enjoyed every minute, despite dining alone.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 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?
1 Thank Mike G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maroochydore, Australia
Level Contributor
21 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 20, 2014

Have just returned from Vietnam where we spent the first 3 nights of our trip (2 mums away from husbands and kids!!) at the Hotel Equatorial.

Couldn't fault it. Staff were lovely, very helpful and informative. Check in was easy and quick. Hotel facilities were excellent. The rooms were spacious, clean and well appointed,

We didn't use the pool but it looked very clean and nice.

Food was excellent. Breakfast buffet was one of the best I have had anywhere in the world. Service was also excellent. The view from the tables in the front left is also great... lovely to sit and watch the hive of activity as Saigon awakes.

Location for us was great. We didn't think much of District 1 which is where the other large hotels are located and seems to be more geared to the western tourists - we found Distract 5 (where the Equatorial is located) much more interesting and also very quiet at night time. The free shuttle makes it easy to get around and also taxi rides are only a couple of dollars.

Airport pick up was in a large 7 series BMW, very clean and water bottles ready for us after a long flight.

Will be back...

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank explorer79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
98 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 19, 2014

Have just spent the last 3 nights here, a little out of the city centre but is an excellent base for a short visit to HCMC ( Saigon). Staff very welcoming and cannot do enough for you. The rooms are excellent, very good bathrooms and toiletries. Swimming pool lovely though changing facilities at poolside limited. Chit Chat Cafe very good.

Room Tip: Book a luxury room
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Bella R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belfast, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
27 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 18, 2014 via mobile

Cannot fault the hotel at all. Good sized rooms, great pool, lots to choose from for breakfast, very friendly staff. Only downside is the location. Yes, it is only a couple of dollars in a taxi to the centre, but it would have been nice to wander around the locale of the hotel.

Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank AmandaCrockett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Equatorial Ho Chi Minh City

Property: Hotel Equatorial Ho Chi Minh City
Address: 242 Tran Binh Trong | District 5, Ho Chi Minh City 70000, Vietnam
Location: Vietnam > Ho Chi Minh City
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling 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 Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Casino Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City
#10 Business Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City
#18 Spa Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City
#21 Luxury Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City
#25 Romantic Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City
#39 Family Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Hotel Equatorial Ho Chi Minh City 4.5*
Number of rooms: 333
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The 5-star business hotel is centrally located between the waterfront and Cholon (Chinatown) and is only 20 minutes to the airport. 10-minute's drive from the hotel is the city's major commercial, financial centres, shopping strips, recreational parks and night spots. The newly refurbished rooms are elegantly designed and tastefully furnished, providing guests with contemporary surroundings and comforts. Facilities include 7 outlets, a business centre, meeting and function rooms and a comprehensive fitness centre and spa. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ho Chi Minh Hotel

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