Hello to all travelers searching for the best in the hospitality business. Vietnam is attracting visitors with its unique characteristics and five-star heritage hotels provide different perspectives. After all, the colonial era left a lot of influence which is still evident today. The biggest question for heritage hotels is whether they make the most of this unique legacy and deliver it to demanding guests. This time we visited Dalat Palace Heritage hotel which was established in the 1920s. Now let’s check if the title “The best 5-star hotel in Da Lat” is suitable for this hotel in our Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel Review.
Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel is situated near Xuan Huong Lake and it starts with the amazing park. To be honest, we are always looking for some green areas in luxury hotels. Honestly, this park is astonishing and we can call the whole property future-proof. Greenery, trees, flowers, and wildlife. Birds here around didn’t let us use a drone, and we felt blessed with so much diverse life around us. Just like at Metropole Hanoi Hotel Review, an old classic car is at the entrance point. Then there is this beautiful Edwardian and Art Deco-styled hotel with neat lines. Once the perfect first impression settled in we couldn’t wait to see the inside.
The check-in at Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel is quick, pleasant, and warm. The bellboy was nice and the concierge gave us a lot of information about the place and what to see around Da Lat. Truly the grand heritage feeling from the outside continues to be present everywhere.
Dalat Palace has 43 rooms in elegant colonial style, and each offers quite a view, no matter whether is the Xuan Huong lake or Dalat Cathedral. We stayed in the luxury exclusive room which has 44 square meters filled with authentic colonial charm. Dark wooden floors, fireplace, wonderful ornaments, art pieces, vintage metal fan, and even a clawfoot bathtub.
There is nothing more we could wish for and the ambiance of the room is superb. Especially, when you open a window and hear all those birds chirping in the park. Just like many heritage hotels, the Dalat palace rooms need some smaller fixes. But it is important to make them right so this heritage feel is still present.
The hotel itself is clean and we didn’t find any bigger messy indicators. The bigger problem is when it comes to furniture preservation. A lot of work is needed to fix everything. However, all the kudos goes to gardeners as well. To maintain a park of this size is no joke at all.
Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel has everything and more. We are just wondering if we ever came across so many facilities. With that being said we must express the rule of thumb “less is more”. Sadly, most of these facilities are screaming for renovation and repurposing. We must mention the library, which is a great common space and many 5-star hotels lack a place like this. Then there is Le Rabelais Restaurant, a magnificent place where breakfast and high tea are also served. Dedicated rooms for smaller groups, terrace to enjoy the view, Cigar Lounge, and Dalat Palace Club.
All the places are great except, the club. This thing simply doesn’t belong here. The ambiance is a fail, and we haven’t seen much activity there during our stay. Frankly, it is quite sad, especially when you know this was a wine cellar back in the days.
However, in this underground area, there are other failed facilities, like karaoke rooms. We know we are in Asia and karaoke is a huge thing here, but what in the world. Another failed facility is the children’s room, but it can be transformed with some minor corrections.
Nevertheless, there is a spa that looked small and the offer wasn’t really convincing, which is a shame. A place like Da Lat could be more about spa and wellbeing. There is also a small functional gym. We were only missing a bench, so the weights would make sense.
Dalat Palace has also a convention room and other smaller meeting rooms in the new building. This “new wing” is designed great and it gets along with the main building.
We had everything and more. There is this great TV box with many movies, shows, and music. Minibar was stacked and the tea and coffee were offered in the room as well. Turndown service left us a note with a joke and a weather report for the next day. However, we missed additional water by the bed, but we got a laugh from the joke.
Food at Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel
Jesus Christ, this was the worst food we have ever had in a 5-star hotel. Food goes the same as the Dalat Palace High Tea Review. Didn’t look so good and tasted even worse. When you see a menu with photos you know this is gonna be a bad ride.
How about breakfast? Most of the savory food was tasty, especially those from the live stations. We got some decent Pho and sauteed vegetables. Regardless, there were some sweets from the high tea for which we already knew they are bad. Luckily, there were preprepared croissants and freshly made waffles with condiments. Ou, we shouldn’t forget the fresh fruits and juices as well, which were delicious.
When it comes to the service there is a problem. No one accompanied us to the table or serve us coffee or tea. The staff was too loose, talking loud and eating on the site. There is almost no bigger flaw than seeing a waiter or chef eating on his duty. Table clothes weren’t aligned and much more.
Bad service surprised me, especially when we got to know some students from College Tourism Dalat. People from all over the country are here in training to be the highest level of hospitality workers. And when we asked students what is their dream work, almost everyone told us about their dream of working at Dalat Palace. So this is the cherry-pick? Big Hotel chains know how to deal with this problem. Training is held in the hotels under the control of senior staff, coming from all over the world.
Exceptional heritage place with a lot of untapped potentials. As we always say, it is not just about location, heritage, and design. People are making hospitality, and Dalat Palace Hotel clearly lacks some good management. Running a hotel is a huge deal and you need a lot of good human resources. With a good management team, a place like Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel would easily be one of the best hotels in South East Asia. Start with the website, offer and find your red line. Guests will come to enjoy a unique experience that should be kept in lasting memory.
Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel Review Card
- ATMOSPHERE – 9.7/109.7/10
- CLEANLINESS – 9.3/109.3/10
- ROOM – 9.1/109.1/10
- FACILITIES AND AMENITIES – 7/107/10
- FOOD AND BEVERAGE – 5/105/10
- SERVICE – 8/108/10
- VALUE – 7/107/10
Price and Location
A room like ours will cost you about 200 USD per day, and we think this is not a good deal for a quality like here. We truly hope there will be some improvements and they will use the potential. Here is the link to the location for easier navigation.