Emeralda resort, Ninh Binh Vietnam, Hanoi and The North
Emeralda Resort is the best accommodation available in the beautiful Ninh Binh area. The countryside in this area is often described as ‘Halong Bay on Land’ thus the resort is suited to anyone who wants to experience the famous dramatic scenery with a slightly shorter journey from Hanoi or those who want to avoid staying on a boat. Everywhere you look there are limestone cliffs rising out of the region's paddy fields and this 5 star resort is a good base from which to enjoy the scenery or take in the nearby tourist attractions such as Tam Coc or the less touristy Van Long nature reserve.
The three categories of rooms are well appointed, spacious and very comfortable - all with a good range of modern amenities in a traditional Vietnamese design. We recommend upgrading to one of the 36 deluxe rooms which are sizeable, with additional sitting areas and a large bathroom. There are also 20 rooms with an upper level, these are great for families requiring bedding for 4 people.
The resort has two good sized pools, one of which is heated; great in the winter when the weather does get cool. There is a pool bar and a restaurant serving western food, a spa and well equipped gym. There is an additional restaurant, serving adequate if rather bland Vietnamese cuisine too.
There are a number of activities to keep you amused during your stay, you can hire bikes to explore the surrounding countryside, play tennis or even play golf a few miles away.
We feel it worth mentioning that this is a popular resort for large groups, particularly at weekends and the resort is in a quiet location thus restricting options to dine out. However it is a decent standard resort in a picturesque location with good accommodation for families.
Superior - This is what we would describe as our standard category. These will be decent 3/4* hotels providing a really good level of service. We would generally expect them to be providing a little something extra, in terms of character, guest experience or facilities too.
- DVD Player
- Free Internet
- Gym / Fitness Centre
- Multiple Swimming Pools
- Swimming Pool
- Television in the rooms
- Varied Local Excursions
- Walking / Trekking
- Wireless Internet
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We feel that we've seen Vietnam and Cambodia in some depth. The real parts, not just the tourist areas. The holiday has provided us with great insight into both countries. David was right when he said it would be better to have our own Guide and driver. It really did make a big difference to the holiday overall!