While I was waiting at the train station for the hotel to pick me up, a motodriver was telling me I should come to his hotel because if the Prince was already full, they wouldn't bother coming to pick me up even if I had a reservation. After waiting 45 minutes, I called the Prince and they came to pick me up, inventing a very confusing story about how my train must have arrived 45 minutes late--when I called--so they hadn't seen me waiting there earlier.
Sure enough, the hotel was full. They offered me a room at Prince II for $20. I had booked a room at Prince I for 3 nights at $15.
Reservations don't mean much at hotels in Vietnam anyway, so I wasn't very surprised or put off and they dropped the room price once I headed for the door.
Then, however, they really messed up, and it cost me lots of money and time:
The next morning I asked the guy at the front desk if he could direct me to the Chinese embassy. He said that I shouldn't go myself, just to give him my passport and he would take care of getting my visa. Stupidly, I trusted him. I needed to get three visas in one week while I was in Hanoi, including the tricky Russian tourist visa. When I went to the front desk the following day to pick up my passport, it was empty. The guy said he forgot to send it. Then the manager offered to get the visa but only if I would stay more nights at the hotel.
They completely screwed my plans and their remedy was that I give them more money.
When I checked out, as an apology, they offered to not charge me a 10% tax. I have no doubt the tax does exist, but of the three hotels I had already stayed at in Vietnam, this was the first to even suggest that I pay the tax. Their fake discount did little to ameliorate the situation.
Unique Quality: The Internet connection at Prince II rarely worked the three nights I was there, so they sent people to Prince I to use the Internet.
Directions: It's in the same general area as many other hotels that you could stay at.
The Prince II (two) Hotel is located right in the heart of the Old Quarter. Breakfast is included in the tariff. The hotel is very tall and narrow and there are lots of stairs, so if you're not fit, ask for a lower floor room. The room I had was up on the fifth floor and superbly outfitted. I have to say, I was impressed with the standard of "mid-range" accommodation in Vietnam and this hotel was yet another example of clean, well fitted rooms. The hotel will organise (expensive but necessary) airport connections for you. You are so close to the action in the Old Quarter, that you are really living amongst the town (in more luxury however). This was a great base for my time in Hanoi and I can thoroughly recommend the Prince II Hotel.
(Sorry, no picture - I did take one, but over exposed the picture!)
Unique Quality: Location, location, location!!!
Directions: The hotel is right in the old quarter. Fantastic stuff!
15 Ngo Quyen St, Hanoi
No. 3 Yen Thai, Old Quarter, Hoan Kiem Dist., Hanoi
106 Hang Bong Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
1 Thanh Nien Road, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi
Latest Hanoi hotel reviews