Vietnam’s growing trade relationship with Australia has seen continued increases in both imports and exports, and more business travellers than ever are heading to the region. Australian Business Traveller journeyed to the recently-opened InterContinental Landmark72 hotel in the country’s northern capital of Hanoi to put it through its paces.
Location & Impressions
The InterContinental Landmark72 Hanoi is located in the new central business district of the city, an area in which a plethora of high-rises are either being constructed or have recently finished construction. Although it’s termed as the ‘central business district’, it’s actually rather sparse with wide boulevards and not much in the way of things to do – this does make it quieter than other parts of Hanoi, which may be the ticket if you’re searching for something away from the hustle and bustle. It’s also got good connectivity to the expressways, so that you can move around quickly if necessary.
The hotel is around 12km from Hanoi’s Old Quarter, and is reachable by taxi in around 40 minutes. The airport is also around 40 minutes drive despite being more than double the distance away, thanks to the highway connection.
The InterContinental occupies the top floors of the Keangnam Hanoi Landmark Tower (also interchangeably called the AON Landmark72), with 10 floors offering up 359 rooms and 34 suites. As one of South-East Asia’s tallest buildings, the tower and the hotel appear impressive when you first arrive, and we’re told that this area of the city is rapidly expanding with multiple new developments that will turn it into Hanoi’s business hub – as it stands though, it’s not exactly bustling with activity in the surrounding streets, so if that’s more your speed you may want to look for something in another district.
On arrival, you’ll notice signage for the InterContinental at the tower’s street level – follow that, and take the elevator up to the 62nd floor where you’ll be greeted by the expansive lobby, offering up stunning views over Hanoi and a warm, modern ambience.
The staff are friendly and helpful, and we’re quickly checked into our Club InterContinental room.
All Club InterContinental rooms are located on the 69th and 70th floors of the tower, and range in size from 46sqm to 56sqm.
Our room is spacious and clean, with floor-to-ceiling windows providing uninterrupted views over Hanoi.
The décor feels a little dated despite this being a new hotel, and the white granite throughout the bathroom and room itself felt like an odd choice.
Inside the room, you’ll find a large king bed…
….an armchair and side table (with a selection fruits and macaroons as a welcome)…
…and an executive desk and chair combo.
A console houses the television and minibar, and there’s also a small illy coffee machine by the desk, which is a nice touch.
The bathroom is spacious, with both a full-size bathtub...
...and a shower suite, but no his-and-hers sinks.
A closet in the entry hall rounds out the offering.
The WiFi at the InterContinental Landmark72 is easy enough to connect to, and offers moderate speeds for general work usage. Heavy downloads / uploads are fairly slow, but that seems to be the case no matter where in the world you are.
The large desk and ergonomic office chair is a welcome addition, and makes getting work done an easy task. The room also features good connectivity throughout, with well-placed international powerpoints, USB ports and even A/V connections for bringing up your work on the larger television screen.
While the room itself is fairly standard in terms of amenities, the real gem at the InterContinental Landmark72 is the Club InterContinental lounge, located on the 72nd floor. We’ve been to a number of different hotel club lounges over the years, but this sprawling lounge has to be one of the largest we’ve seen at over 900sqm.
The InterContinental lounge is much more tastefully decorated than the rooms, and with plenty of seating options you’ll most likely find yourself gravitating here rather than your room.
There are more relaxed spaces with couches and easy chairs for small groups to relax in comfort...
…and window seating for those travelling solo.
The staff at the InterContinental lounge are excellent, and are on hand to assist with anything that comes up, like needing to send a fax or print out a document.
Perhaps the best part about the InterContinental lounge are the plentiful snacks and beverages, produced and presented with a high degree of care and perfect for fueling up if you need to spend your time taking care of business.
The InterContinental Landmark72 offers a breakfast buffet with a large number of choices, but our recommendation would be to opt for a Club InterContinental room and instead order the a la carte breakfast in the club lounge. While there aren’t as many options as the full buffet, it’s still a good selection and the quieter ambience and service more than makes up for it.
On the subject of the club lounge, it’s easily possible to spend your entire day there and not need to head out for a meal.
Kick things off with a freshly ground coffee from the beautiful coffee display, with 3 different beans on offer.
The a la carte breakfast includes a number of Western and Asian offerings, including crowd pleasers like Eggs Benedict, French Toast and Pancakes as well as traditional Vietnamese offerings like Pho or Braised Beef...
...and there’s even comb honey if that tickles your fancy.
We opted for a veggie omelette with a side of sausage that was well cooked and presented.
If you get peckish throughout the day, there’s a selection of pastries, sandwiches and other finger foods to keep you going.
There’s even a fridge stocked with sandwich ingredients so you can build your own, which was an especially inventive touch.
The club lounge also offers an afternoon tea, and a cocktail hour later in the evening.
The InterContinental Ladnmark72 also offers some in-house dining options, including Asian cuisine at 3Spoons and the impressive Stellar steakhouse, which we opted to have for dinner one evening.
Stellar is thoughtfully decorated and pays homage to the produce that they serve. A large variety of cuts is available, and Stellar ages their own meats in-house.
We started off with an entree of mushroom gnocchi....
...with an exceptionally rich piece of steak to follow, which was actually presented and prepared at our table.
The produce was of high quality and is finished off with your choice of sauce at the table.
Stellar's attentive service and preparation make it a highlight of the InterContinental Landmark72. The art-deco surrounds also create a warm ambience and coupled with the fantastic meal, it's highly recommended if you're staying at the hotel or just in the area.
Stellar also has a separate whisky bar if you're after a nightcap, with a range of international whiskies on offer.
Other restaurants within the hotel include 3Spoons, offering up a variety of pan-Asian and international cuisines, and Hive Lounge in the lobby with a small bar and food service.
The InterContinental Landmark72 offers a number of relaxation options on level 7, including a sizeable fitness centre and an outdoor swimming pool…
…and even hot/cold pools and a sauna.
There is a smaller health club on the 72nd floor that is exclusively for InterContinental Club guests, so this is a good option to explore if you find the fitness centre too busy during your stay.
Within the Landmark72 tower are a number of businesses including a supermarket and cinema, as well as beauty salons.
The InterContinental Landmark72 is an interesting hotel that will appeal to business travellers with a specific set of circumstances. Because of its West Hanoi location, it misses out on the hustle and bustle of downtown and the Old Quarter and instead situates itself in the new CBD, with good connectivity to both inner and outer Hanoi.
While the standard rooms themselves aren’t exactly spectacular, all of your basic amenities are covered and the rates are very reasonable considering the level of property. Our tip would be to ‘splurge’ on Club InterContinental access, and even upgrade to a Corner Suite room (which at the time of writing could be had for $80 - $100 USD more) to make the most of your stay.
The Club InterContinental lounge is fantastic, with plenty of space and generous servings of food and beverages. If you’ve got business in the area, or prefer to stay out of the crowded Hanoi centre, the InterContinental Landmark72 is a great choice.