Hotel staff in Hanoi Elegance Hotel are amazing. We've travelled all over the world and have not met a welcome so warm and sincere. In most places we've gone to, hotel staff are professional and polite. So, we didn't quite expect a welcome that was both professional and warm - a sort of cross between a British butler and Aunt Eulalie's farm house welcome. The hotel rooms are nothing to shout about. They're very clean and of excellent standard, but the human touch is just... really special.
For one thing, Little Boy was spoilt with TWO birthday cakes - one in the morning at breakfast with staff at the Hanoi Elegance Diamond Hotel... and another in the afternoon when we arrived at the Hanoi Elegance Essence Hotel. See... there was a mix-up and we ended up checking into one hotel yesterday and another today.
Warm and friendly staff of Hanoi Elegance Essence Hotel surprised us with a delicious whipped cream vanilla cake decorated with a polar bear. Earlier in the morning, Hanoi Elegance Diamond Hotel sang a resounding birthday song at the breakfast buffet. Little Boy became a celebrity. Every other guest came by the table to wish him Happy Birthday. See those friendly faces? It really makes for a nice holiday to have a welcome like that.
The room at Hanoi Elegance Diamond Hotel.
Vietnamese people are highly skilled craftsmen. See what they can do with a few towels? Fold here and fold there. Lo and behold, a turtle to wish Little Boy many long years of life. Turtles live long lives and in Vietnam, they are good symbols for birthdays.
Dinner at Hanoi Elegance Diamond Hotel last night. Every bite was delicious. The highlight of this dish was the shredded beef in bamboo... but what really got my eyes to widen was the broth that came with the beef.
Oh this one... this one has gotta be the best dish of last night. It was sticky rice but for the life of me, I can't figure out how they managed to get the rice balls crispy on the outside, soft and moelleux on the inside.
Vietnamese spring rolls... chockfull of herbs and bursting with taste.
The waiter at the restaurant held his back straight and spoke in clipped tones. Service without servility, another Food Consultant, not waiter. Oh I just love waiters like this. So very French!! I asked him how to pronounce the Vietnamese word "tieu" with its various accents... and it got to one where he politely demurred to say the word aloud because "it is not a nice word and we should not say it here". Gee... I wonder what it means, that word...