I have visited Ho Chi Minh City often and I am at a stage in where I like to explore sights outside the city, but at the same time be able to have the access to the centre with a reasonable commute. I An Lam Retreats is perfect for this as it situated on the outskirts of Ho Chi Minh City right on the banks of the Saigon River. It’s a tropical sanctuary which has peaceful gardens and can be accessed thanks to the hotel’s speedboat, in just 30 minutes from the centre of Ho Chi Minh City. This speedboat trip is just a brilliant alternative way to travel, much faster than the jampacked streets of the city plus I get to view this fast growing city from the water. The feel good factor in arriving on a speedboat feels exclusive and is the perfect way to experience a tranquil piece of paradise. For those that arrive by airplane and had straight away to An Lam Retreats Saigon River, you can also take a 30 minute taxi from the airport. An Lam is the perfect destination to get over a jet-lag.
An Lam Retreats is surrounded by idyllic exotic tropical gardens and the owner prides himself on building the suites around the trees themselves. Nothing is wasted, cut down or compromised here when it comes to modern garden design. The owner once resided here as his personal home and is a lover of wood and this is reflected throughout the resort. Most of the wood used for this resort is imported from New Zealand, and the extensive use of wood gives it a sense of nostalgia of precious memories that can’t be forgotten. It’s a retreat to shelter to from the tiredness of the crowded city and leaving the tiredness behind.
With a full day of fun and sun this is an area with plenty of luxury cosy seating areas. The use of bamboo furniture to lounge around is why I sat soaking up the tropical gardens with some organic tea. The sound of the water feature around the pool gives it a sense of calmness and it is the perfect area to rejuvenate both my body and mind.
My room is the 150 sqm family suite with rooms that open to a private tropical garden and terrace. This terrace is the perfect place to relax in privacy in a comfortable lounge chair whilst enjoying a local 333 (ba ba ba) local beer whilst reading my Kindle. I was right next to the swimming pool which was lovely, so I could opt for a quick swim whenever I desired too.
The Family Suite has a comfortable king-size bed and two single beds, all with huge white mosquito nets, which is not common to see and I liked here. The suite boasts unique period inspired collectibles and has an enticing blend of authentic classical signatures of stylish wooden Vietnamese furniture.
Near the entrance is a separate living room with a collection of contemporary wooden furniture, it provides everything regarding watching TV, sipping some local coffee or just lounging around spending time with my family.
There are two en-suite bathrooms, complemented by spacious outside areas with garden views, which is a perfect layout for bringing the outdoors in. The separate wall mount toilets made my family stay a stress free zone. The two vessel sinks with wood counter tops and brown walls allows all of us to be able to relax and create our own little no go zones.
The freestanding bathtub overlooking the tropical garden is the perfect way to soak up and reflect the importance of a stress free life. And there is an outdoor shower with slate flooring, which I absolutely adore in warm tropical temperatures.
Cooking Class / Restaurant
The most common thing we all share is the love for food and the love for life. For me eating well, of course, is arguably the most essential part of living a good life. Yet here in Saigon, the pace of modernisation has increased rapidly, making a tasty, home cooked meal with friends and family now a luxury. An Lam Retreats cooking class is a perfect way to be educated when it comes to Vietnamese cuisine, which is one of my favourite foods in Asia. There is also a restaurant by the river banks which offers fresh, healthy and authentic food with ingredients sourced from local suppliers.
The restaurant over looks the Saigon river with plenty of flora for shade, with elegant comfortable seating. Breakfast has many freshly cooked options on the menu, coupled with tasty food and excellent customer services. The options of both local and international cuisines caters for international guests. The traditional Vietnamese coffee is one of the best I have tasted here in Vietnam. At An Lam Retreats, the outdoor space is decorated from wooden furniture sourced from New Zealand. The usage of Vietnamese earthenware plates and bowls results with an inviting ambiance full of culture and a home like spirit. I made sure I took my time having breakfast.
An Lam Retreat caters for both local and international guest with an ambition to try to bring people to have more awareness of their health and happiness and how they can get more peaceful, while still living their lives. One of my challenges is to always get my children to engage in the moment and stop looking at their phones. Young people don’t love their devices as much as we think they do. An Lam Retreat is a perfect place helping them and me disconnect from the digital world as well as the busy real world. It is nice to feel reconnected as a family.
- Room reviewed: Family Suite
- Website: anlam.com/saigon-river
- Address: 21/4 Trung Street, Vĩnh Phú, Thuận An, Bình Dương, Vietnam
- Phone: +84 274 3785 555