The Essence Hotel, Hanoi.

IMG_1671.JPGThe The Essence Hotel, Hanoi  deserves a post all of its own with a special shout out to Sophie who went above and beyond in the case of the ‘Missing Passports and Man Bag’.

Summer travels are spent with the comfortable pair and we enjoy many a long winter evening reminiscing about our travels and planning the next great trip. Being in the company of like minded friends always enhances the adventure. However this winter the male counterpart of the comfortable pair will no doubt have a lot of ribbing and mickey taking as we talk about the case of the ‘Missing Passports and Man Bag‘.

After a great couple of days being looked after by Essence we checked out keen for our next adventure and this time it was a road trip to Halong Bay. The Essence staff were making sure their  travellers knew where they were going and helped couples and groups select the correct taxi or mini bus as travellers left for the airport or for some it was a visit to one of the National Parks.

It was then we discovered that the said man bag with video camera and passports was missing and a mild form of panic set in. The Essence staff looked high and low, retraced our steps for us and finally decided to view the camera footage of the foyer area.

We then thought about how helpful all the staff were and realised in their enthusiasm to help that the said man bag had been scooped up and inadvertantly put into a taxi now on its way to one of the National Parks.

By this time our luxury van from the    Indochina Junk company had arrived and when told of the missing man bag story collected another couple close by and returned twenty minutes later to give us some time to think about our next steps. Would this consideration happen in the UK? I don’t think so.

Sophie took control and rang the taxi firm who were able to confirm that they did indeed have a ‘stray’ man bag and would return it later that day on their return to the city. Meanwhile Sophie assured us that she would send the man bag on to our next hotel. Sighs of relief all round. Throughout all of this Sophie and the Essence team took on our worries and encouraged us to go to Halong whilst they did the leg work. The mini van driver was happy to wait whilst this hullabaloo was unfolding.

We are so grateful to Sophie and all the others for this care and consideration and yes the infamous man bag found its way to The Intercontinental Hanoi Hotel on our return from Halong three days later. It had been encased in clingfilm and passports and cameras were safe and sound.

But this is not all …..from the minute we arrived a couple of days earlier Sophie sat us down with a welcome drink and we poured over a map of the city whilst she highlighted areas that she thought might interest us. Its ideally located in the Old Quarter and not far from Beer Corner.

The room we chose welcomed us with wine, fruits and snacks and petals on the bed. They also laundered three days of dirty washing which is worth its weight in gold for sure.

We ate dinner at the hotel twice and the staff always took their time to explain each dish and how best to enjoy it, making sure we didn’t over order. Below you can see Sunrise cocktail, pancakes, spring rolls, chilli sauce and ice cream with sticky rice.

So cheers Sophie and the Essence team until the next time the sun rises over Hanoi for me.

Find out more about Hanoi, Old QuarterIndochina Junk Company cruise in Halong Bay, and The Intercontinental Hotel, Westlake, Hanoi


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