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“Terrible!”
Review of Van Long Resort

Van Long Resort
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Van Long Resort
Ranked #25 of 26 Hotels in Ninh Binh
folsom, california
Level 5 Contributor
34 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Terrible!”
Reviewed 18 April 2012

We stayed at a lovely nearby resort, but wanted some variety for dinner, so walked over to the Van Long Resort. It was dark and deserted, except for a large tour group that was eating in one of the rooms. We were told to sit outside with the tour bus drivers. The table we were directed to was dirty, but I thought we might still stay since we were already there. Then bugs started swarming around the table. I asked to be moved inside, and they set us up at a small table near the large communal tables being used by the tour groups. The waitress kept going through a bunch of table cloths trying to find one that was less filthy than the others. I have never seen such a filthy set of tablecloths in my life! Full of grease stains, caked on black dirt, food particles!! By this time, I just wanted out of there. If the front dining area was this filthy, I couldn't imagine what the kitchen looked like. My 20-something daughter seemed embarrassed to walk out, so I stayed for her sake, but refused to eat the food. After a few bites, she too decided it wasn't good and we paid our bill (even though we never received half the food we ordered and paid for) and left. It was the only food that my daughter ate that I didn't, and in 24 hours, she was in crippling pain, cramps, and diarrhea. Be forewarned, this place is filthy and disgusting.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank joanmar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 May 2010

Unfortunately, everything about this hotel misses the mark. In our experience, the Vietnamese who work in tourism are wonderful, extremely competent and go out of their way to meet all your needs. This was not the case at Van Long Resort.

We arrived in the afternoon to a nearly empty facility. They have multiple buildings on the grounds and it was eerie to walk around and see dark buildings, empty pool (no water), and no people. We finally found someone in the restaurant, and found out that they typically cater to large tour groups from other parts of Asia who get bussed in around 2 am (waking up any one else who might be staying there) and then bussed out the following morning to go to Halong Bay or elsewhere.

They have no idea of how to handle other types of tourists. The English-speaking staff booking tours (a German man) was so negative about everything (even complaining to us about the management!) that anything he shared with us we took with a large grain of salt. His local knowledge is limited and the tours are outrageously overpriced for what you get. Since the facility is about 15 km outside of Ninh Binh, and there is no computer readily available to guests, you have other no other options until you can get access to either. We booked a 12-hour tour to Kenh Ga and Cuc Phong for the outrageous sum of $90 ($45/per person), and this didn't even include lunch. The 12-hour tour ended up being only 7 hours, and the car was a piece of junk. The English-speaking tour guide was from the national park and was fine, but this was literally the first time they had sold this tour, and they asked us to provide a reference on whether or not the guide was any good! Amateurish at best.

Of course, making mistakes and learning is part of the journey, but we would have been much more at peace with this had they not overcharged us by so much. This is not Hanoi or Saigon, so they shouldn't be charging Hanoi/Saigon prices.

Dinner was terrible. The room was glum and smelled moldy. When they showed us the room, the first thing the staffperson did was go into the bathroom and flush the toilet. The tub didn't drain, the TV did not work and we had to ask for towels. Unless your Vietnamese is good, don't expect to communicate with the staff, who have very little to no English.

We were so frustrated with their lack of service, we forfeited the room charge that we had prepaid, and called up to Hanoi to arrange our travel back, rather than risking more involvement with the staff. We contacted Sunshine Travel in Hanoi (Alex Nguyen was awesome), and they sent a colleague from Ninh Binh to talk with us within 15 minutes after we hung up. That person ended up telling us about a terrific boat ride in Van Long Reserve, for $3/per person, that we took the next morning before our car picked us up. That boat ride was magnificent, and it did not occur to anyone at Van Long Resort to even suggest it to us...yet, they sell tickets to it at their restaurant! This left us feeling that they would rather overcharge us for tours that don't deliver on what is promised, rather than possibly selling us something that we would actually enjoy.

On this one, we'll chalk it up to our own ignorance about Ninh Binh, but hopefully others can learn from our bad experience. Options in Ninh Binh may also be limited, but at least you'll have options and if you don't like what you hear at one hotel/tour operator, you can at least go down the street and talk to another one.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank 49WeeksToGo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Additional Information about Van Long Resort

Property: Van Long Resort
Address: Van Long, Gia Van, Gia Vien, Ninh Binh 40000, Vietnam
Region: Vietnam > Ninh Binh Province > Ninh Binh
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #25 of 26 Hotels in Ninh Binh
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Van Long Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 104
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Here it is very quiet, we are approximately 15 miles from the nearest city (Ninh Binh)A little paradise to dream and relax! Enjoy Vietnamese cuisine.Explore the many attractions!Dive into another world. ... more   less 

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