The Nam Hai is about to be re-born as A Four Seasons Resort, and it’s set to be even better.
The Nam Hai has been one of the most celebrated and talked about resorts in the Asia Pacific Region since it opened 10 years ago, but it is about to be taken up a few notches with a spectacular re-brand by The Four Seasons Group.
I am in Vietnam this week, and was lucky enough to be the first Australian journalist or blogger to be granted a sneak peek into the spectacular renovation of this five star Asian resort, set to open on December 20 just in time for Christmas.
It will be The Four Seasons 100th resort, and at the helm of what is set to be one of the world’s greatest resorts is Resort Manager David Macklin who already has a reputation as a superstar within the Four Seasons group (although you wont find him saying that – I am).
Macklin has been with the group for over 16 years, and is known for his significant achievements throughout his career including the post as General Manager of The Four Seasons in George Street, Sydney for four years. As well as renovating and upgrading almost every aspect of the hotel, he also established a laundry in Alexandria to service the Hotel initially, which he then turned into one of the most successful laundries in the country as it now serves 26 hotels.
He is also a superstar triathlete in his spare time, and father of two. One can only imagine what he is going to do at Four Seasons Resort Nam Hai, but whatever he does, we know it will be good.
“This renovation and re-brand is not about increasing numbers, but about improving the individual guest’s experience of the resort,” he says.
“We are establishing a vegetable and herb garden, and building a new cooking centre where guests can select and pick ingredients from the garden, and then enjoy a cooking lesson using them in a traditional Vietnamese recipe. A new facility is being built exclusively for cooking lessons. Villas are being updated, there is a new restaurant, new pavillion, improvements to the spa, new kids club and so on. Return guests will see marked improvements.”
The resort is already famed for its Olympic size swimming pool, as well as huge private pools in many of the villas, as well as its 100 beautifully designed, luxuriously decorated, sprawling villas, most of which are 80sqm in size or larger. Many villas have ocean views, and each has a delicate balance of indoor and outdoor space and all have outdoor showers.
Villas are designed in a horse shoe configuration to maximise ocean views as well as privacy, and every aspect of the resort has acute attention to detail from the thirst quenching but not overly sweet welcome drinks, to flower-filled pre-massage foot baths, a huge selection of international wines by the glass, mouth watering home made chocolate balls served with coffee, and so on.
There is one kilometre of beach out front patrolled by security where guests can relax in peace.
“The resort often feels like there’s no-one in it as guests spend a lot of time in their rooms, or in the spa relaxing,” Macklin says.
The official re-branding hasn’t yet taken place, but this week, it was clear there is a renewed sense of professionalism and vigour in the air. It’s all everyone in hospitality is talking about here in Asia.
This will definitely be worth checking out in the new year.