Tiny balconies with a good location
52 Ngo Huyen Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi T: (04) 3938 2113,3938 2114
Rooms at Hanoi’s Hibiscus Hotel come in three shapes and sizes: the front, the back and the attic. Standard rooms are spacious and reasonable value, but the attic room is the best we’ve seen for the budget price and the whole reason we are reviewing this place. Be warned though: there’s only one.
Rooms at the front have the most light and overlook Ngo Huyen. Unfortunately the balconies are tiny – with standing room only for one person – but windows are bountiful. Back rooms are a similar size but have only a small window and no balcony. However, despite the lack of natural light, white walls and furnishings and recessed lighting assure the rooms aren’t gloomy.
Both front and back rooms are similarly equipped with a wardrobe, desk, TV and fridge, and bathrooms have shower cubicles. If you want twin beds you’ll need to go for a room at the back as front rooms only come in double. We were quoted US$20 for standards (at the back) and US$25 for superiors (at the front).
In terms of decor, the hotel carries its name into the rooms, with single large flowers painted on the walls, adding some character to otherwise simply decorated rooms.
The hotel has eight rooms across four floors; with no elevator it’s a bit of a climb to the top but the staircase is wide and hallways are spacious, so it somehow feels less effort than when you’re also battling with steep narrow stairs while carrying heavy bags.
If stairs are no problem and you’re on a budget then aim for the attic room. For just US$12, excluding breakfast, at time of writing, it’s a fantastic find. Located on its own on the fifth floor, it seems like a “let’s convert the laundry room into a guest room” situation. The door is of the metal and frosted glass variety and the room has none of the style of the rooms below. It’s basic, with a bed, a wardrobe, a desk, a TV, a fridge and a wet room but it is more spacious than you’ll usually get for this budget and even has small windows.
Located on Ngo Huyen, a few doors’ down from the Original Hanoi Backpackers’ Hostel, Hibiscus Hotel is well located for a range of tourist targeted services, including restaurants, book shops and motorbike sales and rental joints. Being a small alley, it doesn’t get too much traffic, but is busy with backpackers and parked motorbikes. It’s certainly not the street to be on if you want to avoid the tourist hordes, but is close to the action.
During our visit we discovered Hibiscus is connected to Especen Hotel around the corner, and offers the same US$3 breakfast. For the money, we’d go for Especen, although that bargain attic room at the top is an excellent budget option and it’s a good back-up if Especen is full. Walk-in rates were lower than the online rates.
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By Sarah Turner
Last updated on 3rd February, 2016.