Hello and welcome back to all travel blog enthusiasts. There is a fat chance you will be traveling to Vietnam where Ho Chi Minh City is simply a must. Anyone can stop for a moment and compare old and new, peaceful and hectic, adventurous and familiar… list is long and can include all possible matters. Today we are taking a closer look at the historic luxury Hotel Majestic Saigon to reveal a variety of collected secrets since it opened its doors in 1925. Naturally, in this Majestic Saigon hotel review you’ll also get all the information you need for your upcoming visit.
About Hotel Majestic Saigon
About 100 years ago, Mr. Hui Bon Hoa, the richest Chinese businessman initiated the start of Hotel Majestic. Uncle Hoa picked the location very wisely, right at the Saigon River. Mr. Hoa was in charge of Majestic Hotel Saigon only for 23 years. After that, the Hotel Majestic Saigon fell into French hands and stayed under their management for over 45 years. The hotel changed hands in its long history only a few times and closed its doors merely for renovations in august of 1994.
Once the Vietnam war finished in 1973, the hotel was handed from the French to Saigon Authority. Soon after the transition the new name Hoan-My or “Perfection” came to life and with it a new purpose – the hotel became a government guest house. A few decades later the Hotel Majestic Saigon is the first 5-star hotel in Saigon managed by state-owned Saigon Tourist.
In 1994 it was time for the long-awaited improvements and restorations that cost approximately 5.5 million USD. Part of the efforts was to keep the French Colonial and classical French Riviera styles. Once the hotel reopened a year later it got a brand new swimming pool, gym, sauna, and business center. The next big extension happened in 2003 with the 8-story Saigon Wing adding a SPA venue, restaurant, and bar, plus adding 54 guestrooms to the total of 175 rooms.
Majestic Saigon surely has its colonial charm but there are some failures. Some ornaments don’t truly fit into the scene and from time to time the design is sloppy. For instance, there is a hallway with blue lights and I am not convinced it is proper for a historical hotel like Majestic. The exterior is in need of some repairs and messy corners should be tidied. Notably, there are also huge billboards on one side of the hotel, which can’t be expressed as 5-stars property.
One would expect impeccable check-in from a hotel with that long tradition, but that wasn’t the case. To be honest, this is the first 5-star hotel where no one helped us with our luggage. We did check in at the counter and continued to our room on our own. However, once we entered our Hotel Majestic Saigon hotel room, we were happy to see a plate of fresh tropical fruit as a welcome gift.
We stayed in the Colonial Suite which impressed us with its space and adequate layout. Classical Colonial French style makes this spaciousness warm and beguiling. A dark shiny wooden floor is a must in a setting like this, and the extra bonus is its herringbone formation. This kind of flooring makes spaces bigger which might add to this spaciousness feel. However, the furnishing is nice and only the downvote might go for the bathroom. Somehow the design doesn’t work luxurious and even a huge bath can’t save it.
Facilities and Amenities
If you follow the “work hard play hard” rules, you’ll find some privacy and secretarial services in the Business Center, located in the Lobby Hall. Later you can go up to the first floor of the Hotel Majestic Saigon to the courtyard swimming pool with Merry Pool Bar in its proximity. Not far from it are the Spa and well-equipped Fitness. Our least favorite part of the Hotel Majestic Saigon is the casino, M Club. However, if you feel golden, try your luck, why not.
When it comes to amenities, I haven’t missed anything. They can provide you with all you need. There are even organized tours for the adventurous ones.
Food and Beverage
Dining a breakfast at the Breeze Sky Bar exceeded our high expectations. Admittingly, we love al fresco dining, especially when the day presents a sunny breeze and lovely views. There is a special feeling when you are enjoying your first meal and the city is already crazy. And believe me, Saigon gets crazy! With everything spot on, we expected nothing less from the food and indeed it was very delicious and versatile.
The breakfast option is vast. One can enjoy from all the classics to Pho Ga aka chicken soup. Usually, hotels can go wrong with legendary meals like Pho, but this one was quite good. The fruit selection can be complimented as well. Especially when the fruit is in a season like it was when we visited Saigon.
Besides breakfast, one can enjoy all-day alfresco dining at the Breeze Sky Bar, or you can have some western inspired food at the Serenade restaurant. However, the menu didn’t convince us and luckily Saigon got us covered.
For those looking for a peaceful tea time with a book, we recommend the Catinat Lounge. It is easy to find, as it is part of the lobby. This location makes it perfect for a get together from early morning to late evening. If you are after a more lively experience, we encourage you to head up to the passable rooftop M.Bar. Besides evening drinks and music, one can enjoy the sunset at the edge of a large terrace. Don’t expect artisanal cocktails but the vibe is there.
Majestic Saigon Hotel Review is like a Deja Vu from Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel. A great location, amazing background, lovely historical buildings, tradition, and a lack of sophistication. A 5-star hotel shouldn’t have shortcomings as we found. Back in the early days when the hotel was born, I bet there were better hospitality practices than there are today. However, this is nothing that it couldn’t be restored. Vietnam will learn about high-end tourism and hotels like this will hopefully flourish again.
The room is nice though, and you will be a part of history just by staying there. If you add quite a low room price to that, you get a decent stay. I hope one day this hotel will be on the level of Majestic Kuala Lumpur and leave memorable impressions.
Majestic Saigon Hotel Review Card
- ATMOSPHERE – 7/107/10
- CLEANLINESS – 9.3/109.3/10
- ROOM – 8.2/108.2/10
- FACILITIES AND AMENITIES – 7/107/10
- FOOD AND BEVERAGE – 8.3/108.3/10
- SERVICE – 7.5/107.5/10
- VALUE – 8.3/108.3/10
Price and Location
Colonial Suite like the one we stayed in will cost you about 150 USD with the breakfast which isn’t a lot for a 5-star hotel. Here is a link to the location for all who would like to stay there.