Feb. 13, 2017
HANOI — Paradise Group, one of Vietnam’s fastest growing luxury hospitality providers, has made a highly seasoned international hotelier the chief operating officer.
Carmen Marienberg, who has helped shape standards at some of the finest boutique properties in the world over the last 30 years, stepped into the role last week after spending a year and a half as general manager of Alma Oasis Long Hai Resort in southern Vietnam.
As COO of Paradise Group, which is renowned for its Halong Bay cruises, Marienberg will focus on developing the kind of structure the 9-year-old company requires in order to maintain its positive trajectory.
Paradise Group currently controls more boats — seven — than any other cruise provider on Halong Bay and is planning to launch two more this year as part of a new line called Paradise Elegance.
At 61 meters long and 13 meters wide, the 200-ton steel ships will be the biggest cruising vessels to ever ply the waters of Halong Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
The first is scheduled to sail on March 1.
“It’s a critical juncture for Paradise,” said Marienberg. “It’s in expansion mode, which is exciting. But nothing can stand for any length of time without the right foundation.”
A native of Germany, Marienberg has spent much of her career in the Asia-Pacific region including Australia, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.
From 2006-’10, she was general manager of La Residence Hotel & Spa in Hue.
During her tenure, the hotel built on its award-winning debut and established itself as one of Vietnam’s most distinctive and acclaimed properties.
Marienberg also possesses meaningful cruise experience, having worked for Cunard, the M/S Berlin and in several capacities for Carnival Cruise Lines.
In addition to Paradise Cruises, Paradise Group owns and operates the 156-room Paradise Suites and Paradise Trend hotels — the first and only boutique luxury hotels in Halong Bay — and three revered restaurants, including two in Hanoi that consistently rank on TripAdvisor among the top 10 dining venues in Vietnam’s capital: HOME Hanoi and Ngon Villa.
It also manages La Vela Cruises, a two-boat business in Halong Bay that offers 5-star services at 4-star prices.