I had the opportunity to spend last weekend at the truly fabulous An Lam Ninh Van Bay, and I must say it is a gorgeous resort in a stunning location. Up until now I haven’t written any hotel or resort reviews on this website – I prefer to leave that to my ‘day job’, but I am going to make an unsolicited exception here as I think this has become my new favourite Vietnamese resort. In fact I have now even taken to shortening its ‘tongue-twister’ of a name to simply ‘Paradise’, and was even considering naming this post – ‘Postcard from Paradise’!
This new ‘all villa’ resort is located on a beautiful secluded stretch of coastline nearby Nha Trang on Vietnam’s South Central Coast. Access is via a 30 minute (approximate) drive from Nha Trang and then a short 10-15 minute speedboat ride. A variety of one & two bedroom villas are available in various designs - some facing the beach, some facing the lagoon, and others cleverly built into the forested rocky hill sides. All the guest villas are incredibly private, comfortable, airy and very spacious indoor and out – each with own small swimming pool and outdoor ‘living area’. Flat-panel TVs with satellite channels, DVD players, resort iPod loaded with music of choice (and iPod/iPhone dock), complimentary WiFi, air-conditioned bedrooms and full butler service are standard in all the villas.
Although it is not located on an island (it is actually a very large densely forested and rugged remote headland) it certainly has a ‘castaway island’ feel about it, and visitors should be aware that there are no other bars, restaurants, shops (or even a town or village!) around. The resort does blend in perfectly however with the natural environment rather than changing it – built around and nestling into the native forest and the spectacular granite boulders that abound.
I would kind of describe the feel at An Lam Ninh Van Bay as ’rustic-modern casual luxury’ (for want of a better term!) and on their website they describe it as “a blend of eco-modern with traditional Vietnamese touches and state-of-the-art technology”. The chef at the resort is first rate, the F&B was excellent and TJ , Duke and their team including Irene, Rob, Ange, and Ilena (sorry if I’ve spelt any of the names incorrectly!) do a wonderful job and really seemed to be going out of their way to ensure that all the guests there felt incredibly welcome, creating individual special experiences to ensure each guest had a most memorable stay.
The choice of destinations and style of resort is surely a matter of personal taste and budget (and this is most definitely not a budget resort!), but if you are after a beautiful secluded spot for a quiet relaxing beach getaway, appreciate the natural environment and are looking for relaxed ‘barefoot luxury’ with top service and facilities this could possibly be the perfect place, and your paradise too! I didn’t want to leave and can’t wait to return….
More information about An Lam Ninh Van Bay can be found at their website: http://www.epikurean.ws/index.php/intro-an-lam-ninh-van-bay
P.S. I should mention that the resort is located on a long white sandy beach, nestled amongst the granite boulders and tropical forest which rise up behind it. The area of the resort does also include a few smaller secluded coves and private beaches, and the image I have selected for this post is from one of those areas and not from the main beach. Oh – and while I was staying there was indeed plenty of blue sky and sunshine, however I was far too ‘busy’ relaxing to take any photos at those times!