HUE, Vietnam – Azerai La Residence, Hue, the historic 122-room boutique hotel in the former imperial capital of Vietnam, has been named one of the “World’s 100 Greatest Places” for 2019 by Time magazine.
The recognition by one of the world’s oldest and most respected news magazines places Azerai La Residence, Hue—the second hotel in a new group formed by hotelier Adrian Zecha—in truly select company, featured alongside just 43 other “Places to Stay.” (The remaining 56 destinations on the Time list include “Places to Visit” and “Places to Eat & Drink.”)
“Hue is a city steeped in history, and Azerai La Residence, Hue has one of the best views in town: it sits across from the famed 19th century citadel where Vietnam’s last imperial family once ruled,” Time writes. “Within the citadel, guests can visit emperors’ tombs, ornate pagodas and other remnants of the Imperial City.”
“Afterward, they can head to the hotel’s saltwater swimming pool and lush lawn—both of which overlook the Perfume River, which gets its name from the scented flowers that fall into the water courtesy of nearby orchards,” it adds.
The annual list—culled from editor and expert nominations from around the world—recognizes 100 destinations that are breaking new ground, leading industry trends and offering guests an experience unlike any other, Time said in announcing the list, which was published online (https://time.com/collection/worlds-greatest-places-2019/) and in the print edition on Aug. 22.
“From the moment guests arrive at our hotel they are fully immersed in the culture and history that surrounds them, along with a distinctive and special beauty, and attentive personal service,” said Phan Trong Minh, the General Manager of Azerai La Residence, Hue. “To be included on Time’s exclusive list further cements our reputation as one of Asia’s most distinguished hotels.”
Azerai La Residence, Hue has been a regular presence in many of the hotel industry’s most coveted honors and awards, having placed among the top 20 hotels in Asia and Southeast Asia for four years straight in Conde Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards. It has also featured prominently on Travel + Leisure’s “Best Hotels in the World.”
In February, Azerai La Residence, Hue concluded work on the second phase of the most extensive renovation in its recent, 14-year history. All 73 superior and deluxe rooms in the hotel’s west wing were stripped and redesigned with an understated aesthetic that affirms Azerai’s devotion to simplicity and elegance.
Le Spa, the hotel’s award-winning spa, was expanded in size by more than 50 percent as it introduced new thermotherapy areas for men and women, alongside its six inspired treatment rooms stylishly decorated with eclectic details of the great 1930s art deco era.
The hotel’s gymnasium was relocated from the upper floor of the west wing to the ground floor beside the spa, and is equipped with all new treadmills, exercise bikes and an elliptical trainer, as well as free weights and other wellness resources.
The hotel’s bar, Le Gouverneur, was moved from the rotunda of the historic mansion to one of the same building’s ells. The hotel’s restaurant, Le Parfum, was also refurbished with the same Azerai aesthetics.
The colonial mansion at the heart of Azerai La Residence, Hue was built in 1930 as part of the residence of the French Resident Superieure. The mansion’s distinctive facade, its long horizontal lines and nautical flourishes are hallmarks of the streamline moderne school of art deco architecture. Its two complementary wings, built in 2005, are contemporary in design yet echo elements of art deco aesthetics.