I have a complicated relationship with the French colonization of Vietnam. Every bone of my nationalist Vietnam-loving self still tries to subside the anger that arises when I think about the pains left behind from that occupation. However, I would be lying if I didn’t admit to liking the positive things that had been born out of that interaction, and by positive things I mean these three precisely: the bánh mì, the fusion pastries that were inspired by French creaminess but not too sweet, and the architecture.
Best Western’s Indochine Palace provides a really good example of this architectural philosophy, spacious Western lay-out with utilization of meticulous Eastern details and textures. The most gorgeous room in the hotel is the magnificent dining room, with a beautiful interior terrace flanked by glass and bird-cages chandeliers. The furniture exhibits a thoughtful combination of luxurious silks, bamboo and dark oak.
The buffet is a good size and offers Central Vietnamese specialties like bánh bèo and bún bò Huế along with the more typical Phở. There are also plenty of Western breakfast options like the omelet bar, muffins, and donuts.
The hotel was a bit on the quiet side perhaps because it just recently re-opened. The service is very attentive but there are a few kinks to work out. However, at a hundred dollars a night, it is quite a steal, especially when you take a closer look at all the gorgeous details in the room, carefully curated to evoke a sense of past glamor.