Dec 9 2013, 9:06am CST | by PR.com
Hanoi, Vietnam, December 09, 2013 --(PR.com)-- New Cruises and Resorts Bump Up Luxury Travel in Vietnam.
Today's luxury travelers want the world’s most authentic experiences and total pampering. They want off-the-beaten-path adventures with impeccable service.
That's why Vietnam is shaping up as one of the most attractive destinations in Asia this year, just behind China, according to a recent survey of 1,200 travel experts during WTM London 2013.
These days, the luxury traveler is being wooed with new boutique hotels, high-end experiences and ground breaking tours. For example, the journey from Hanoi to Halong Bay can now be completed by helicopter, offering a bird’s eye view of some 3,000 islands threaded with karst cliffs.
With a base of iconic colonial properties like the Sofitel Legend Metropole in Hanoi, a fast-growing list of modern spa destinations, recently opened golf courses and the launch of luxury river cruise service, travelers will no longer experience the pain of antiquated accommodations and traveling on congested roads.
While Vietnam has always been a popular destination for history buffs and adventure travelers, its recent growth in popularity is due to the improved tourism infrastructure. Additionally, Vietnam is still a relative travel bargain, even for those who don't normally concern themselves with cost.
Luxury travel is all about the experience. An average lavish tour will run from $3,000 to $3,500 per person for a ten-day tour, although many are priced at more than $1,000 per day, per traveler.
Pham Ha, founder and CEO of Luxury Travel Ltd., one of the country's first luxury travel and tour operators, said his company enjoyed two digit growth in 2013 and he expects growth of 42% in 2014.
Halong Bay Goes Upscale and Safer
A new upscale cruise development in Halong Bay, Starlight Cruise of Oriental Sails Ltd., has a new cruise ship with 32 sophisticated and tastefully designed en-suite cabins.
It is equipped with high class amenities including a spa, restaurant, a bar, two lounges, a library, a gift shop, a wine cellar and private dining restaurant inside, plus hot tubs, and a mini-golf course on the atrium deck.
“Starlight Cruise’s en suite cabinsare very spacious, and all rooms have Halong Bay views, even from the Jacuzzi and bathroom, plus every corner your cabin. Safety is also a priority, thanks to its doubled bilge and bulwark. Travelers enjoy a different cruise itinerary, exploring the floating village of fishermen in Cua Van and its pearl farm cultivation. The cruise is an excellent choice for intrepid, leisure travelers and MICE groups who want to experience Halong Bay safely and in style,” comments Pham Ha, after his recent experience on board.
"You spend your time caving, boating, climbing, watching wildlife, kayaking, embracing Mother Nature, and hanging out with your fellow passengers and crew, rather than doing the typical cruise-ship activities. It is soft adventure travel on water, but in comfortable surroundings."
Ha, whose company specializes in Indochina, says Vietnam and Cambodia are the top ten destinations in Asia according to a report revealed at the World Travel Market in London.
"Today's luxury travelers want to be entertained and stimulated, rather than simply pampered, and Vietnam offers a magical mix of tropical beaches, post-colonial charm, a string of World Heritage Sites, stunning inland scenery, world-renowned cuisine and a home-grown flair for hospitality," Ha added.
The Vietnam tourism industry has received 6.5 million international arrivals, 32 million domestic travelers and revenue of VND150 trillion in 2012. Ha estimates 10% are the luxury travelers who come to Vietnam and more high-end Vietnamese holidaymakers who take luxury trips with their family and travel around the country.
The beauty of Vietnam is that it continues to evolve without diluting its cultural heritage. They achieve that delicate balance between modernity and the past, calm space and clamorous activity, elegance and authenticity. Over the next five to ten years, they look set to add even more offerings for the luxury traveler.
The already approved tourism development strategy envisions that the number of international arrivals will soon be 7-7.5 million, that domestic travelers will approach 36-37 million, that revenue will hit US$10-11 billion by 2015, and that the tourism sector will contribute 5.5-6% of the country’s GDP by that year.
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