HUE, Vietnam —Hotels usually leave the contents of the suitcase to the guest, but increasingly, they’re having more and more to say about what those contents look like when the guest checks out.
They’re seducing guests with their own designs. They’re helping get garments made-to-measure. And they’re shepherding guests in and out of the city’s most chic boutiques.
“Clothes make the man, and they make the guest, too,” said Phan Trong Minh, general manager of La Residence Hue Hotel & Spa. “It used to be that a destination’s culinary arts really elevated the experience of place. But increasingly, we’re finding that garments singular to a specific destination do, too.”
From Bintan to Vietnam to Tokyo, these five hotels are sewing up the guest experience in a whole new way.
Fusion Maia Da Nang
Boutique spa resort Fusion Maia Da Nang on Vietnam’s central coast has launched its own loose flowing clothing line following a stream of compliments about its staff uniforms.
Inspired by Kuan Yin (the Goddess of Compassion in East Asia) and the Lady Buddha, the Maia Fashion Collection features tops, dresses, pants and shirts for all shapes and sizes.
The softness of the linens and cotton and the palette's warmth are inspired by lotus petals. “The collection simultaneously evokes the strength of the lotus rising from the water and pays tribute to the flower's femininity,” said Fusion Maia General Manager Michelle Ford.
The items, priced from USD 20, are available at the property’s Maia Lifestyle Boutique, where garments can be tailored for guests seeking a different hue or proportion.
The Sanchaya Bintan
The Sanchaya, a luxurious beachfront resort situated near Singapore on Indonesia’s Bintan Island, has introduced the S’YA collection - 20 items ranging from silk yao boxy tops, retro single mesh singlets and silk cotton sleeveless shirts, to silk linen flair shorts, rib cotton brought trousers, and cotton twill skinny jeans.
Natalya Pavchinskaya, the founder of Sanchaya, said her debut apparel line marks a contemporary yet classic take on smart casual and sporty wear. “I wanted to design a collection for true travellers at heart so they could recapture, in a tangible way, that blissful, indulgent yet relaxed feeling you experience only on holiday,” said Pavchinskaya.
Fashioned from soft, sophisticated fabrics and various compositions of cotton, viscose, silk and lycra, the collection, Pavchinskaya said, is “all about travelling light”. The predominantly monochromatic S’YA items, of black, white, grey, and various hues of light blue, are available from Sanchaya's boutique Collection and can be mixed and matched to suit the occasion.
The Reverie Saigon
The three-night stay marries a three-hour shopping experience in one of Asia’s most dynamic cities with three spa treatments in a venue hailed by CNN in 2016 as one of the world’s best new spas. The Leading Hotel of the World was also recently named the fourth best hotel in the world by Condé Nast Traveler in its annual Readers’ Choice Awards.
The personalized shopping excursion is tailored to guests’ interests, with visits to the boutiques of Vietnam’s up-and-coming designers, an irresistible option. Rates start from USD 1,656.
La Residence Hue
A tight-fitting silk tunic worn over pants, the "ao dai” is to Vietnamese women what the kimono is to the Japanese. Defying pigeon-holing as a dress or a pant suit, it’s said the ao dai reveals everything and shows nothing at the same time.
The iconic garment commands centre stage in La Residence's new three-night “Long Lithe Vietnam’ package, that celebrates the ao dai’s 1000-year history and coordinates on a tailor-made production of the ao dai for each guest to take home.
The package, priced at USD 699, includes tickets to a fashion show on the most glamourous boulevard in Hue, Vietnam’s ancient imperial capital, accommodation in a Superior room that drinks in views of the fabled Perfume River, and daily breakfast for two.
Palace Hotel Tokyo
Shopping in Tokyo doesn’t get better than this: A personal concierge to help you navigate Japan’s oldest and grandest department store, Mitsukoshi Nihonbashi, which first opened as a kimono shop in 1673, coupled with a JPY 50,000 (USD 440) gift card to boot.
With its spectacular location overlooking the Imperial Palace Garden Moat, part of a sprawling East Asian complex where Japan’s imperial family lives in the heart of Tokyo, Palace Hotel Tokyo lives up to the country’s reputation as a fashion trendsetter through its year-round “Couture Tokyo” package.
In addition to the personal shopping concierge and gift card, the package, priced from USD 1,390, includes two nights in a Deluxe with Balcony room, including breakfast at the hotel’s Grand Kitchen with a singular view of the moat and gardens.