The Italian Design Houses Behind Saigon’s Most Luxurious Hotel

SLIDESHOW: Seven years in the making, the Reverie Saigon is the passion project of ultra-wealthy Hong Kong tycoon, Eric Chu.

A handful of Italy’s most storied furniture design houses, including Colombostile, Giorgetti, Visionnaire, Poltrona Frau and Cassina, have collaborated on Vietnam’s most luxurious, and expensive, urban hotel.

The Reverie Saigon, a 286-room hotel with Ho Chi Minh City’s most expensive suite, has spectacular views of the city and an unabashedly palatial atmosphere.

Seven years in the making, the hotel is the passion project of ultra-wealthy Hong Kong tycoon Eric Chu. He is the owner of Eurasia Concepts, the distributor of more than 30 luxury Italian furniture brands in Asia, so his new six-star hotel also functions as a showcase for his furniture import business.

Described as Vietnam’s first six-star hotel, The Reverie Saigon is located in the cinematic downtown of District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, on the upper and lower floors of the 39-storey Times Square tower, of which Chu is the main proprietor.

The hotel’s rooms and suites, as well as the spa, restaurants and lobby, were each assigned to a different Italian design house, so the ambiance ranges from outrageous opulence to sleek modernism to whimsically romantic. In some rooms, exquisite Italian silks adorn the walls, while in others there are hand-laid mosaic tiles. There are leather divans fit for silver-screen actresses, while chandeliers hang from mirrored medallions. Beds are dressed in Frette linens at 400- and 600-thread counts while marble baths come complete with amenities by Chopard in rooms and Hermès or Acqua di Parma in suites.

Its largest suite is the palatial 313 square metres (3,369 square feet) Reverie Suite, with a rack rate of US$15,000 per night, making it Vietnam’s most expensive room.

Although the hotel’s interior design predominantly references Old World aristocracy, the all-glass exterior facade is a 21st century statement. Like its namesake in New York City, Saigon’s Times Square projects a dazzling, night-time show, emblazoning the sky with a rainbow of coloured lights.

“The design is bold and its approach sophisticated,” said the hotel’s chief architect, Kent Lui, whose past projects include Hong Kong’s International Airport and the city’s iconic HSBC tower. “Its extravagance and splendour captivates because the hotel really does present a design experience like no other.”

Lui’s favourite space in the hotel is the seventh-floor lobby, with grand views and decor that includes a custom-made, 3m (9.8ft) tall Baldi Firenze clock. The same unreserved grandeur is on display outside the hotel’s fifth-floor La Scala Ballroom, where a 19th century Bechstein piano was painstakingly refinished by Baldi with malachite stone and gilded bronze. The hotel, which cost hundreds of millions of dollars to create, is set to be joined by another Reverie hotel property, located in Hanoi, in coming years.

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