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Where to Stay in Hanoi: Best Areas & Hotels, 2018

Hanoi can feel like a crazy, chaotic place. The capital of Vietnam, it is at once modern and old-fashioned, and on the narrow streets of the Old Quarter, you'll find honking horns attached to everything from bicycles to buses, all weaving in and out of traffic together. The Old Quarter is home to much of the city's sightseeing, like the Night Market, Water Puppet Theater, and Turtle Pagoda, as well as its cafe, restaurant, and traditional shopping scene - with entire streets devoted to just one item, like shoes or tires. You'll also find many of the tourist hotels within a 10-minute walk of this district. The Old Quarter is also home to beautiful Hoan Kiem Lake, which provides some respite from the pulsating district. If you come to Hanoi for business, West Hanoi is home to the city's new business district. Here, you'll find the National Convention Center and more hotels, mostly of the luxury chain variety.

Where to Stay for Luxury

Hanoi cityscape
Hanoi cityscape
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To stay away from the chaos and constant horn honking of the Old Quarter, check out the Hilton Hanoi Opera. Next to the Hanoi Opera House, this hotel is within walking distance of the Old Quarter, but in a quieter neighborhood that also hosts high-end luxury shops. Rooms are spacious and clean, with free Wi-Fi, and the staff is friendly. The food at the on-site restaurant is very good. Other amenities include a swimming pool, fitness center, and childcare services. There's also a helpful travel desk.

The Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi features luxe, beautiful rooms with silky, soft linens over comfy beds and a pillow menu to ensure you get a perfect night's rest in its colonial-style building. The hotel is not far from the Opera House and hosts multiple restaurants plus a beautiful garden area and a heated outdoor swimming pool.

The architecturally stunning JW Marriott Hotel Hanoi fronts a lake in the West Hanoi business district and hosted President Barack Obama when he visited Hanoi. The glass and steel designer hotel features contemporary rooms with all the mod cons. The suites are particularly noteworthy, with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the city. Service is excellent. Since the JW Marriott is not within walking distance of most of the tourist attractions, like the Old Quarter, the hotel runs free shuttles to them frequently throughout the day.

Where to Stay for the Best Value

Street vendor in Hanoi
Street vendor in Hanoi
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In a fabulous, buzzy Old Quarter location, the Hanoi Emerald Waters Hotel Trendy is a best-value pick for its funky, very clean rooms that are spacious for the location. The decor includes accent walls and bright velvet sofas. The staff is super friendly and happy to help with everything from bookings to restaurant recommendations. The included breakfast is also delicious.

Hanoi Trendy Hotel & Spa is on the edge of the Old Quarter, meaning it's not as crazy and noisy as some places, and is another one of the city's best-value bets. The rooms feature bold colors and trendy decor and feel very comfortable. The staff is amazing, and extras like vouchers for free foot massages are often included at check in. There are also cooking classes available. An excellent full breakfast is included in the rate.

Also on the edge of Old Quarter is the Calypso Premier Hotel, which offers chic rooms featuring a crimson and white color scheme; old black and white photos hanging on the walls; light wood floors; and in the most deluxe ones, floor-to-ceiling doors opening onto balconies. The staff here always seems to be smiling and are very welcoming. The included breakfast is delicious and there is fast, free Wi-Fi.

Where to Stay on a Budget

One Pillar Pagoda
One Pillar Pagoda
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In the Old Quarter, just a 10-minute walk from Hoan Kiem Lake, Hanoi Holiday Diamond Hotel is a good bet for families on a budget, with family rooms available. Rooms are basic but clean, and the staff here is very helpful, offering directions and dining recommendations. It is also possible to book day tours from the front desk. For less noise, ask for a room in the back of the hotel, which is farthest away from the busy street.

Another excellent budget bet is the Hanoi Rendezvous Boutique Hotel, which offers small and simple but clean rooms. The staff is welcoming and the location is right in the Old Quarter and within walking distance to everything, including the Night Market. Free Wi-Fi is another perk, and airport transfers can be arranged.

Green Diamond Hotel is a basic budget option in a fantastic Old Quarter location. Rooms are dated, but very clean, and for the price prove to be good value. The friendly staff is excellent, holding doors for guests, giving directions, and making sure rooms are properly cleaned. If you don't like noise, ask for a room in the back of the hotel. These lack windows, but offer a quieter sleep. Rooms in the front come with balconies over busy Hang Bac Street, which are great for people watching but not easy on sensitive ears.

Where to Stay for Romance

West Lake, Hanoi
West Lake, Hanoi
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For five-star luxury romance try Lotte Hotel Hanoi, just west of the Old Quarter in the Ba Dinh neighborhood. The property is housed in the top floors of the 65-floor Lotte Center and features panoramic views from floor-to-ceiling windows in the luxe, modern rooms and suites. There are four restaurants, two swimming pools (one indoors, the other out), as well as a spa and fitness center.

For personalized romance, check out the Holiday Emerald Hotel, which is a small boutique hotel in the Old Quarter featuring friendly staff that goes out of their way to help guests celebrate special dates, from birthdays to honeymoons. Rooms are clean and comfortable, and you'll find flower petals on the bedspreads upon check-in.

With fresh roses in the well-appointed rooms, the elegant Little Hanoi DX Hotel is another romantic choice. A boutique option off a small lane in the Old Quarter, it is just a few minutes walk from Hoan Kiem Lake. The breakfast here is wonderful and extensive, focusing on local food. The service is also extremely friendly.

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