Nestled in a lush nature reserve on a private bay on the Son Tra Peninsula, known to locals as ‘Monkey Mountain’, the InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort is a magical feast for the senses. Designed by famed architect Bill Bensley, the whimsical retreat was built over four levels meant to represent Heaven, Sky, Earth and Sea. Located a short drive from the historic town of Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a fascinating place shaped by historical riches and cultural treasures. The multiple award-winning InterContinental Danang Sun is the perfect setting to slip away into a jungle and beach oasis, while being immersed in the myth and beauty of Vietnam.
Inspired by the country’s Buddhist temples, palaces and villages, the property is an ode to the culture and heritage of Vietnam. Everything – from the striking black-and-white color scheme (a nod to the black lacquered wood and white tiles of Vietnamese temples), to the meticulously designed interiors with hanging lanterns and indigenous Vietnamese shapes– is drawn from the country’s unique characteristics. After a swim in the villa’s infinity pool, with its dramatic East Sea panorama, you can rinse off under showerheads fashioned from real hill tribe baskets from the Central Highlands. Even the in-room minibars were inspired by the tiny-drawered cabinets of traditional Vietnamese pharmacies found in Hanoi. Each uniquely decorated room is a visual masterpiece offering unparalleled views of the sparkling bay, giant boulders by the sea, lagoon or jungle. For those part of Club InterContinental, afternoon high-teas and evening cocktails are complimentary, along with a range of other exclusive luxury touches.
Once you’ve admired the stunning design of the property and its grounds, a range of activities and luxury amenities await. For nature lovers, the star attraction is all around you (literally). The Son Tra Nature Reserve surrounding the InterContinental Danang Sun is home to nearly 1,000 species of plants, over 100 birds, and dozens of mammals and reptiles. To catch a glimpse of the rare and beautiful Red-shanked Douc Langurs (a species of Colobine Monkey), you can join a daily trekking excursion that travels two and a half miles each way to a 1,000-year-old Banyan tree, offering breathtaking views and animal sightings along the way. Water-loving adventurers can try their hand at driving a basket boat – a ubiquitous sight in Vietnamese fishing villages. These unusually shaped boats look like giant floating bowls and are much harder to manage than they appear. Those who are in the mood to leave the property can have trips perfectly customized by the hotel concierge to visit the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, less than an hour away. Creative types can enjoy a crafty day without leaving the grounds, with options to learn how to make a traditional paper lantern or the ‘Non La’, a popular leaf hat found on the heads of farmers, vendors and even modern Vietnamese ladies.
A trip to Vietnam wouldn’t be complete without enjoying the culinary artistry from the nation’s own rich heritage, coupled with an infusion of French cuisine. La Maison 1888, helmed by world-acclaimed chef Pierre Gagnaire, is the first restaurant in the country led by a Michelin-starred chef. The restaurant was designed to recreate an antique French mansion with each dining area its own intimate niche reflecting a period room. La Maison 1888’s setting tells the story of a colonial French-Eurasian family through architecture and interior design. Private dining rooms reveal the characters of this fictional clan: from the sensible Accountant’s Room, to the thrill-seeking Traveler’s Room, to the risqué Le Boudoir de Madame. You’ll encounter the Vietnamese theme of five elements while dining on the property, where each taste (sour, bitter, sweet, spicy and salty) corresponds to an element. At a meal, there is an effort to balance out these five tastes, as well as to appeal to the five senses and nourish five internal organs of the body.
If you prefer to spend your vacation indulging and relaxing, like so many of us, there is no better place to do so than at the HARNN Heritage Spa. Named Asia’s Best Resort Spa in 2016, the treatment rooms are in beautiful villas on a private lagoon; a dreamy location for an afternoon of total bliss and relaxation. The signature treatment, Journey of Marble Mountains, first requires you to fill out a questionnaire that explores everything from your health to your favorite color. It also incorporates Dong Y, a traditional Vietnamese medicine, in order to find out which of the five elements you fall under. The five elements stem from the power of five, a common theme in Vietnamese culture and is also seen throughout the resort in the visual balance of colors. After a day at the spa, revitalize yourself at the L_o_n_g Pool, an adults-only infinity pool with sweeping views of the resort and peninsula. Toasting to the day with the property’s signature drink, the Lotus cocktail, is the perfect segue into dinner.
For more information, please call +84 236 3938 888 or visit www.danang.intercontinental.com.