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Anantara is a colonial style hotel on the banks of the Thu Bon River, right on the doorstep of the UNESCO town of Hoi An. The town’s history as a busy port for merchants from the West and Far East explain the hotel’s eclectic mix of French, Dutch, Chinese and Japanese influences.
Each of the 94 guest rooms at Anantara have a spacious split level townhouse layout complete with a bathroom and living room, unpretentiously decorated with hand-made art works. Your private porch has unspoilt views either over the lily ponds in the garden or over the painted longboats on the river. Upgrade for special touches like a balcony, interconnecting rooms or a sunken bathtub. However, if you're really going all-out, stay in the Anantara River View Suite with the added pizzazz of a king-size four-poster bed, walk-in wardrobe and balcony with swinging daybeds to lounge in and admire the stunning river panorama.
Dining options abound at Anantara with its menus showcasing the very best of Western and Vietnamese cuisine. Lanterns restaurant whips up a buffet breakfast in its French colonial dining room and becomes abuzz at night with locals and in-the-know visitors in search of grilled seafood and steaks with expert wine pairings. Reflections pool bar is the place to refuel (or top up) mid-sightseeing while Riverside Café is a delightful spot for afternoon tea on the terrace, offering tea specialities, cake and pastries. Heritage Bar, yes the list goes on, serves a more relaxed dinner option of tapas, pizza and an extensive cocktail menu to sample beneath a lantern-adorned tree - the perfect spot for people-watching, cigar in hand. For a special occasion however, you'll be forgiven for stepping back from the hubbub of the streets and into a poolside pavilion where your personal butler and chef will take care of every whim.
On days when all you want to do is flop, Anantara offers a swimming pool, library and fully equipped spa - don't miss out on the opportunity to experience a Vietnamese Four Hands Massage. However if culture vulture is your persona of choice and you want to immerse yourself in the local culture, try your hand at Vietnamese cooking, painting, lantern making or even a beginner's conversational language class. The hotel is also happy to organise boat trips down the Thu Bon River and walking tours of the Cham Imperial City of My Son or the Marble Mountain when you exhaust the bustling streets of Hoi An - unlikely in our opinion.
Anantara is central in a town that is easily navigable and the perfect size to explore by bicycle (available to rent from the hotel), oh and Hoi An is every Foodies paradise.
Frances, Original Traveller