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“Location, staff, rooms & the value - top!”
Review of Casablanca Hotel

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Casablanca Hotel
Ranked #55 of 68 Hotels in Sapa
Hamburg, Germany
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Location, staff, rooms & the value - top!”
Reviewed October 10, 2012

At first, this is not a noble hotel for rich people which expect the highest European standards during their stays (sry Mr.Tom) - but you get what you pay and there is no room for argue: this is very good.

The location is perfect - below the "main" street with all the restaurants. Right now, you will have (with the right room) an awesome mountain view! There are smaller rooms and there are a few larger rooms with two windows and a balcony. Speaking of European standards - we had a tub in every room (an old tube, however) with a working shower (the water is warm, but you have to find the right point between the cold to warm water oscillation circle).

Mr.Tom and the staff is very helpful and friendly. And here is our short story: We really wanted to have the mountain view feeling during or stay, but our room (for two persons) had just one small balcony ('oh the luxury'). As we realized that the 3 person room next to our room is free we kindly asked to switched and due to a temporal shortage of guests the answer was: "we only want to make you happy" - yeah! Without surcharge! I think that speaks for Mr.Tom and his family & staff.
Furthermore, they helped us with the sleeper train booking and the bus transfer back to Lao Cai. I also have to add that they gave us a very simple map of the town and showed as some touristic places on this map. But at no time they tried to sell us any trekking trip - maybe because we said that we just would like to stay for 4 nights and discover the town and surroundings but without any interest in trekking. No one forced us to to book something.

To the breakfast...it is simple. Very simple, but enough to survive the first two hours. But if you really want to have a real breakfast, then go to a real restaurant or stay in one of the non-charming more expensive hotels in Sapa. Again, this house has charm but you get what you pay.

I really hope that the last free place in front of the hotel will not be blocked by another new soulless hotel in the future. Because this could be the end of the original mountain view...sigh

Room Tip: The rooms with three beds directly above the entrance - then you will have a great view!
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Paul M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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210 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 (33)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Thai first
  • Any
English first
Ramat Gan, Tel Aviv, Israel
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed October 9, 2012

The staff is very helpful, they all know English and were very helpful booking other tours and helping with everything they can. The location is great, just in the center.

The rooms are just OK and aren't too good but because of the friendly atmosphere and the lovely people it was just a great stay!

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Gregoss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand
Level 4 Contributor
40 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed September 30, 2012

We stayed 2 nights in the hotel and also arrived after an overnight train trip at 7am in the morning. We would like to agree with the many previous positive remarks.
It is normal practise that you check out at about 10 am so when a hotel is fully booked it makes sense that you have to wait for the other guests, also on holiday,to vacate. The room needs to be cleaned so this takes time too. To offer a free breakfast is generous because our friend who stayed in another hotel had to pay 100.000 dong for hers. She had to wait for her room also.
The price reflects the fact that it is a hostel.
The bread roll is a typical fresh vietnamese/french bread roll. You can have as much coffee or tea as you like. If you want a large European breakfast you had better go to a restaurant.
Regarding the dampness of the room it rains a lot in Sapa.
Regarding the staff. They asked us what we wanted and gave us options. We loved our private tour and Tim was a great spontaneous, informative guide with a great sense of humour.
We think it was very generous of Mr Tom to invite us for the family meal on this special night of Trung Thue (the children's moon festival). Our friend was invited and came free of charge.
We felt totally welcomed by everybody. The staff all spoke very highly of Mr Tom .

Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank Ellis M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Epsom, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
60 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed September 18, 2012

We arrived at the same time as most travelers do in Sa Pa, at about 7am. After a bumpy and hot train ride we got the free shuttle bus provided by Casablanca which was very convenient, but everyone was feeling very rough and I thought that I was going to be sick after the bus ride. We arrived at the hotel where the owner told us that the hotel was full and we could not check in until 10am at the earliest, we could have breakfast for free (which was included in the price of the room anyway) and then they could discuss booking tours with them. They were particularly persistent about booking tours. We couldnt even have a shower to freshen up.

Eventually we decided to book a tour with them. The one we wanted to book was a group tour, but they persistently pushed us to take a private tour which was only a few dollars more. We like meeting other people and find private tours a little awkward sometimes, but the staff kept on saying that the tour wasnt available for groups and only private. It was only after we said we would find another company to book with that they let us do a group tour.

"Mr Tom" invited us for dinner on the first night. As I had been ill all day from the train ride, I wasnt really up for eating a Vietnamese dinner, and so we refused. He acted insulted and did not understand why we didnt want to go to dinner with him. We were polite with our refusal but he still made us feel guilty. He also gave us a load of rubbish to try and make it seem like he was a nice guy, like second hand tshirts left from other travelers and some old lychees...? On the last day, we left for Bach Ha market and I didnt have time to eat my breakfast so I decided to take it with me. I told Mr Tom this after he offered some kind of soggy, greasy egg bread roll to me, which I refused saying I already had something to eat, then acted insulted again. There is absolutely no pleasing this man. We found him fake and just wanted to sweeten us up so we would book tours with them.

Breakfast is just disgusting. You either have a stale pancake with 3 slices of banana, a greasy egg roll or an old, hollow bit of bread with a tiny lump of butter and jam. There are nice restaurants a stones throw away which we ended up sneaking off to because we couldnt face the breakfast anymore.

On a plus side, the rooms are nice. Always hot water and the bed is comfortable. However it smells a bit damp, there is no a/c and there is no wifi.

Overall, if you are going to Sa Pa solo without any tours booked, this place is absolute hell. They will push you and push you to book tours until you want to smack them in the face. Save yourself the aggro... There are nicer places to stay in Sa Pa.

Room Tip: Just dont stay here
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Naomi T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed September 14, 2012

The location is great and we had an amazing view of the mountains. The family that owns it and the staff are all incredibly kind and eager to help in any way. They even invited us to have rice wine one night and we all had an amazing time. Our room was very clean and comfortable. I would definitely recommend this hotel to anyone who is on a bit of a budget, likes nice people and comfortable rooms

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Caroline J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anna Bay, New South Wales, Australia
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed August 14, 2012

What a great place to stay when in Sapa. The room was way better then we expected and being able to sit on the balcony, drinking the complimentary bottle of red looking out over the mountains of Sapa, we thought we would never leave. The staff were super friendly, bending over backwards to make sure our stay was good. Mr Tom loved to have a chat and a cuppa any chance he got. He really made us feel welcome. The hotel is in a great location, nice and clean with breakfast included.

Room Tip: Ask for the room with the balcony as not all rooms have a balcony.
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sandy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed July 27, 2012

We arrived in Sapa at 5.30am and Mr. Tom welcomed us with tea and breakfast which was lovely. Our room had a balcony and the view was absolutely stunning. We also booked a trek through the hotel which was excellent value for money (11km trek to 2 villages and a bus back). The staff worked so hard to make our stay a happy one. The only thing that let the hotel down was that the room was slightly damp and when it rained heavily in the night, rain came through under the door into the room. For the price we paid, however, it really was good value for money and, despite the damp, we would stay there again if we returned to Sapa.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a balcony.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank HSWat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Casablanca Hotel

Property: Casablanca Hotel
Address: 026 - Dong loi, Sapa 84, Vietnam
Location: Vietnam > Lao Cai Province > Sapa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge 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 Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #55 of 68 Hotels in Sapa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Casablanca Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 254
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The wild beauty is seen, not only in the land and the sky, but also in the tapestry of colors seen throughout the spectacular rich region and in its lovely people. ... more   less 
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