Our honeymoon series:
Part 1: United First Class from SFO-NRT
Part 2: How to Get to Hotel from NRT Airport
Part 3: Andaz Hotel Tokyo
Part 4: Tokyo Itinerary
Part 5: How to get from Tokyo to Kyoto
Part 6: Hyatt Regency – Kyoto
Part 7: Kyoto Itinerary
Part 8: Shinkansen Kyoto to Tokyo
Part 9: Conrad – Tokyo Part 1
Part 10: Conrad – Tokyo Part 2
Part 11: Singapore Business Class Tokyo to Singapore
Part 12: Conrad – Singapore
Part 13: Silk Air Business Class Singapore to Danang
Part 14: Intercontinental Danang Part 1
Part 15: Intercontinental Danang Part 2
Part 16: Turkish Business Class Hanoi to Istanbul
Part 17: Turkish Business Class Istanbul to Rome
Part 18: United First Class Rome to Chicago
How Much Did It Cost?
50,000 IHG points x 4 nights = 200,000 points
How did we do it?
We each signed up for the IHG card. After spending $1,000 within the first 90 days, we each received 60,000 points. AF is $0 for the first year and is only $49 after that. After paying $49, you get a free anniversary night at any IHG hotel in the world. A popular hotel for free redemption is at the Intercontinental Hong Kong (IC HK) that QL stayed at on her way to Vietnam. There is no category restriction like the Chase Hyatt card. Therefore, we think this is the best hotel card out there.
QL previously redeemed the sign on bonus for IC HK. I used mine to get 1 then QL used points she earned from work stays to redeem three additional nights.
How much would it have cost if we paid cash?
Had we paid cash, it would have cost ~$460 x 4 = ~$1,840
After a night in Singapore, we headed to Vietnam for the R&R part of our honeymoon. We took a short SilkAir flight to Danang . This was the first time QL and I traveled to Vietnam together and we were looking forward to the nice weather and delicious food.
On the ground in Danang, we were pleasantly surprised by the hassle-free experience at immigration, baggage claim, and customs. In Saigon, I almost always get shaken down for “coffee money” bribes of $10 or $20.
QL visited Vietnam a few months earlier to do some wedding shopping so she figured out that Grab was the easiest way to get around the city. It is more popular than Uber so the wait time is usually shorter. We waited a few minutes outside for our Grab then made a stop at the photographer’s studio on the way to the hotel.
We wanted to try some local food before heading to the hotel so chose the popular Banh Trang Tran. We tried the local banh trang, which consisted of pork and fresh veggies, that we rolled ourselves. We also tried the mi quang and were surprised that the noodles weren’t yellow. We later learned that Danang uses the normal white pho noodles, and farther south is where the yellow noodles are used. My wife’s mi quang is actually better.
After the late lunch, we took another Grab to the Intercontinental, locally pronounced as “Inter khan”. The luxurious hotel is located about 15 miles outside of the city center, on a peninsula called Monkey Mountain. The drive there was beautiful and it wound along the coast before entering the hotel grounds which were carefully landscaped.
As we got out of the car, we were greeted by a couple dressed in traditional Vietnamese clothing. One attendant tagged our bags which were later delivered to our room.
The other attendant led us through the grand lobby to the check in area, which was located in an elevated open terrace that offered an amazing view of the resort and the ocean.
While waiting to be checked in, we walked around the terrace to take in the marvelous views. We were in awe with the hotel’s surrounding natural beauty.
Have you seen a more gorgeous check-in area?
After check in was complete, we were directed to a golf cart, which took us to our room. The resort is so spread out that you need a golf cart to go to/from your room and the central resort area. You can make the walk, but it would take at least 15-20 minutes. We utilized the golf carts during our stay. The downside was we had to call about 10 minutes before leaving.
The hotel was completely full while we were there, so we weren’t able to get a suite for the honeymoon. Despite this, we were pleasantly surprised by the king room.
The hotel gifted us a bottle of wine and some chocolates upon our arrival. We received a cake and bottle of sparkling wine on the second day. They also invited us to a happy hour but we missed it due to our photoshoot.
The hotel provided us with a basket of fruit and coffee and tea.
The bed was large and they had laid out rose petals for our arrival. They provide four bottles of water per day in the room, but more water is available at the pool and down at the beach. In case you’re curious, you can also buy 500ml bottles of water while you’re outside the resort for about $0.50 (10,000 VND).
Each day, a postcard filled with local facts was placed on our bed.
The room opened up to a large balcony that had a dry bar and a large outdoor seating area where we sat outside to have coffee and watch the sunrise on a couple of the mornings.
We were advised to keep our balcony door closed at all times because the monkeys had learned that the fruit baskets in the rooms were an easy place to score a free meal. We had one visit us one morning.
There was a large closet, and the hotel provided two pairs of sandals and a nice bag that most of the guests used. We thought it looked pretty fashionable.
The bathroom was pretty large. It had a separate room for the toilet, and a two sink vanity. They provided his and hers amenity kits with basic toiletries in case you forgot something at home.
The bathtub was made to look like it was carved from a single piece of stone. It had a cool water scoop made from a coconut, and they provide bath salts each day. When we first got there, they had drawn a bath with rose petals. There was a rain showerhead that was affixed to the twelve, maybe fifteen foot ceiling.
After settling in, we called for a cart back to the lobby to do some exploration before dinner. The resort is very open, with many large seating areas.
It also has a couple chessboards and a pool table in the game room.
The hotel has a nice gym, with cardio and strength equipment. I thought it was cool that they have complimentary coconut water available for you after your workout.
We eventually went down to the beach to watch the sunset. To get to the beach you can descend the steep staircase or take a gondola.
We then walked around the property to find the infinity pool, which is located above Long Bar.
As IHG cardholders, we have Platinum status, which allows us to have complimentary drinks for two nights. We went downstairs to redeem our drinks. The bar really lives up to its name. There were spacious booths with plush seating on one side.
On the other side of the bar were seats suspended from the ceiling and resembled hammocks. We sat at the bar on the second night and the bartender served us a couple snacks and drinks on the house.
We chose the booth on the first night.
The one thing this hotel doesn’t lack is seating areas.
We went back to our room for dinner then called it an early night. We had to get up at 3:30am to get ready for a photoshoot.