PAIR UP IN PARADISE

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Published on July 10, 2018 with No Comments

Full focus on you (and the family) at NhaTrang’s seaside resort, The Anam.

Words ANIS RAMLI
Images THE ANAM

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Nha Trang serves up some of the best beaches in Vietnam, and it is no wonder that this seaside town – just slightly over an hour by flight from Ho Chi Minh City – has been hugely popular of late. The weather is deliciously warm all year round, and in the summer, the cellophane-clear waters are so calm that they almost resemble a huge lake.

The reimagining of this Vietnamese Riviera has seen a number of new accommodations cropping up. But on the Cam Ranh peninsula, The Anam is proving to be the most exciting brand to plan for all kinds of holidays – whether it’s restorative, where the focus is on you, to family trips and romantic getaways for couples.

The independently-own resort was built with a grand master plan in mind. Ambitious with its accommodation option – 96 rooms in an elevated five-floor hotel wing and 117 villas spread across the property, the resort sits on a sprawling 12-hectare ground with manicured turf grass and some 3,000 palm trees, three swimming pools, a beach club, a 3D mini theatre, a spa, a French restaurant alongside three other F&B outlets – one of which fronts a 300-metre private beach. While the grounds seem vast, it’s a pleasant stroll from villa to the resort’s facilities, but guests always have the option to ring for a buggy ride.

If you forget the size, The Anam is truly an architectural fascination. Designed in Vietnamese age-old aesthetics with a subtle nod to its colonial heritage, the slick interiors come together in a collection of natural wood, bespoke mosaic tiles and stone pathways. The centrepiece of the resort is the Premium Villa. Just two units available, these villas offer the ultimate privacy, enclosed in its own private quarters and entrance, complete with a private pool, an in-villa spa treatment room, a steam room and a jacuzzi. Located just next to the 10-room Balinese-inspired spa, therapists enter through a discreet door connecting the villa and the spa, to ready your room for pampering, complete with soothing spa music and room mist.

You could spend your entire day in-room getting blissfully pampered and pummelled if you do not need to eat. For food, make your way to Lang Viet for a whirlwind gastro tour of Vietnamese cuisine. A menu that takes you through the flavours of the north, central and south Vietnam lets you tuck into dishes that go beyond pho. There are Ca Kho To (fish simmered in caramel sauce), Bo Nuong La Lot (grilled beef in betel leaf), and Bun Bo Namb Bo (brothless noodles with crunchy peanuts and fresh herbs) to try. Then laze back with a tall glass of Da Me Dau Phong (tamarind drink with peanuts) as you take in the cool ocean breeze of the East Sea.

While The Anam’s resort-feel calls for lounge casuals and cool cottons, The Colonial, which focuses on classical French cuisine, could be the ideal place to get a bit dressier. The lightly grilled scallops were perfectly executed, so was the beetroot cooked sous vide paired with goat cheese as a salad in a light dressing. The menu is kept simple with refined techniques and gorgeous plating that lets diners see the work that goes behind it. The Saigon Bar next door makes for a perfect ending to your night. With its stylish interiors hung with black-and-white photographs from local Vietnamese artist, Mai Loc, the space is classy with a low-key vibe that makes downing a fruit smoothie or coffee seem hip. The Indochine is more relaxed, where buffet breakfast is spread out with live kitchens and an a la carte dinner menu that includes pizzas and pastas.

There is plenty to do to while the time away, too. If you can tear yourself from the spa, the resort offers complimentary non-motorised watersports activities. Mornings can be spent stretching the limbs with resident yoga instructor, Umesh. There is also a tennis court located behind the hotel wing for those wanting to work a sweat. Amid the grassy expanse of lawn, kids can fly kites and play ball or Frisbee. Most guests with young ones in tow are just happy to have them run around freely to enjoy the breeze and sunshine. Twice a week, half a dozen of the staff’s mothers take part in the resort’s unique initiative, serving up authentic home-cooked meals to guests in what is known as “Mama’s Cooking”. Apart from savouring authentic dishes, it’s a great way for guests to experience local culture.

For an out-of-town jaunt, The Anam’s daily shuttle brings guests to Nha Trang, about half an hour’s ride away, where the Nha Trang Vespa Tour is a particular highlight (bookings can be made via The Anam). Meanwhile, the launch of the resort’s Nha Trang Art Tour, a seven-hour excursion that brings guests into the homes of acclaimed local artists, adds a cultural excitement to an already sublime stay.

 

Royal Brunei Airlines flies Ho Chi Minh City 4x weekly for easy connections to Cam Ranh. Discover things to do in Nha Trang in www.muhibah.com.bn

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