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I came there after the Halong Bay tour and had a very pleasant stay even the weather has been bad and cold. There is nothing to do apart from kayaking, but they are old and the paddles don't work at all. But the bungalows are really nice so for relaxing and reading it is nice here. But due to the rain I left after one night.
Worth a stay as the views are amazing! But would definitely recommend a 2 night top stay with 1 being enough. The rooms are clean but very basic. There isn't much privacy between your bungalow and the one next door as you can hear things as little as walking around. Staff were okay but would try and squeeze every penny from you. A beer on the main last costs about $0.50 but here costs $2.50, wine was being served at $8 a glass woth no option of what wine. Upon arriving I would try and arrive at high tide or you'll be climbing up the pier as it has seen better days! Food was also basic and expensive woth the buffet in the evening costing $9! Worth a stay but don't get your hopes up.
This is a mini version of paradise. The resort is nicely laid out with several bungalows and the restaurant in the middle. The food was okay but the staff was attentive and friendly and willing to go above and beyond to make us as comfortable and happy as possible. It's still Vietnam though so not quite the same as if you were going to Fiji but definitely a great value for your money. For westerners though - bring plenty of bugspray - the location isnt immune to mosquitoes and some vermin you may see lying around. Overall its a secluded beach, that has kayaking, volleyball and can provide a great trip for relaxation.
This is paradise on earth, the views are breathless, the staff is very very nice and the food is simple but great!!! A special mention to Chung that was always willing to help in all possible, he was excellent! This is a humble and simple place, without any luxury, but were you may be in direct contact with nature. We would not miss this ever, but you must have the right mind set... simplicity and Nature... the rest is not needed here!
We left a night early from this knock-off resort (staying less than 24 hours total). If we were to send pictures home, people would be surprised we left early rather than extended our stay, but a combination of complete lack of any service, dodgy rooms, a genuinely hazardous rotting jetty, equally hazardous food, and sadly dirty water lead to a sense of dread that lingers until you can get off the island again (at your own expense of course). If you’ve seen the Simpsons episode with Kamp Krusty - this is basically it. The impression we had was of a bunch of guys trying to extract every dollar they can from the punters while doing as little as possible in the way of work. The staff play their own music and mostly avoid eye contact. At times you feel like you’re at a party you’re not invited to. Try negotiating the ‘buy 2 get 1’ happy hour. Believe it or not the staff will actually argue with you as to whether you received your free watery cocktail (nope, the tinnies aren’t included in happy hour). There is also a suspicious sister ‘resort’ on the bay opposite which may or may not have the same name. I suspect ‘sandy beach resort’ is a hasty rebranding in an attempt to shake off some of the dreadful reviews. A close inspection of some of the signage around the resort would suggest at least 2 previous names , ‘Nam Cat resort’ (on the bedsheets)and ‘Nam Cat island ecotourism resort’ (on the signs in the room). A brief google search of these previous names reveals only a dormant Facebook page and a bunch of 5* reviews from suspicious accounts. We rarely complain on holiday, and didn’t attempt to here because the staff, once you find them, don’t speak English. For a location surrounded by such beauty it’s incredible that it can be so bad. But on leaving the island we felt as though a great weight had been lifted from our shoulders; I imagine not unlike the quiet joy a prisoner feels upon his release. We visited Sandy beach resort towards the end of our trip in Vietnam, and the experience here, and of Cat Ba in general, has been terrible. There are so so many better places in Vietnam to spend your time. We stayed at a Farmstay in Phong Nha for example which was equally isolated yet could produce amazing food for 60,000 VND, with lovely staff. The contrast with the extortion on display here is stark. Our worst experience of a great 3 week trip.
We stayed 1 night at this "resort" as part of a 3 day / 2 night Ha Long Bay trip with Imperial Legend Cruise. The first night on the boat was excellent but the second night at the resort was disappointing. The facilities are poorly maintained and the service and food is not good. The rooms are of a backpacking standard with annoying issues which could be fixed easily with some care (like faulty fans and broken latches). The staff seemed disinterested in the guests and more focused on serving themselves cocktails and playing very loud music. The water is anything but crystal clear as the website suggested. It is grimy and full of plastic waste. We did not get value for money for this part of the trip.
Awful experience. The worst we had in Vietnam. Staff was annoyed by our presence. Then they gave us the smallest room but we paid the maximum price for a family room. Even the biggest room was not worth it and not the same as in the pictures. Food was terrible and expensive. Even the kayaks (only activity possible) were broken and dirty. Just don't go!
Not good value for money (we paid approx 50 usd per night). The location is beautiful but there is not much to do on the island and transport to cat ba is expensive. The rooms are small, noisy and not very clean. The hotel staff is not very service minded and their services (transport and laundry) are over priced. Food is dull and over priced. The room is not cleaned if you are staying more than 1 night.
This place was a bit of a let down. The room was nice, bathroom was not great. Terrible food! It's so isolated with nothing to do. Stunning views though! We stayed in January with very cold temps and the don't turn the heat on until after 6 so we spent a good 5 hours absolutely freezing and unhappy! May have had a better experience with warmer temperatures.
The real big ticket for this place is the absolute incredible views (see photo). We asked for a room over the water, and the views from our balcony were absolutely stunning. Relaxing here with a few cheap beers was worth the cruise out here alone - one of the highlights of my 25 day trip to Vietnam. The ‘resort’ (term used loosely mind you) offers free kayaking (unguided), foosball, pool, beach lounges, etc. You can pay extra (not much) to do a 4 hour shore trip to Cat Ba island, and from there you can rent a scooter to explore if you wish. We didn’t do this, being happy to just lounge around and enjoy the views. Other reviews had warned about the quality of the rooms, and they were spot on. More time needs to be put into the cleanliness of the rooms - you felt a bit gross even stepping into the bathroom. Bathroom is poorly designed and shower is shocking with no pressure and sprays mist everywhere. We’d also read that the food quality was terrible - we’d braced ourselves for this, but had nothing to be worried about. It wasn’t A+ standard, but it was well and truly edible, and quite tasty. Lunch was shared platters of rice, tofu, prawns, chicken dishes and lots more. Dinner was a BBQ buffet of squid, pork and chicken along with noodles, rice, chips, salads etc. no one went hungry. When we asked for the over-water bungalow, we were warned it will be noisy because of the hotel across the bay, but we thought the guide was just trying to convince us to stay in the cheaper room - he was not. The noise carries across the bay perfectly - it was like the party was happening right outside my window. Kept me awake until it wrapped up between 1 and 2. Just something to consider - earplugs should do the trick. We knew what we were in for when we booked this accomodation, so weren’t too fazed about the downsides. The upsides definitely make this place worth a stay for one or two nights.
Located in Cat Hai within a 5-minute walk of Lan Ha Bay, Catba Sandy Beach Resort is within 2 miles (3 km) of Ba Trai Dao. This 18-room, 3-star hotel has conveniences like free breakfast, a restaurant, and a private beach.
Free breakfast is included with your stay. In addition to a meal at the onsite restaurant, you can also enjoy a drink at the bar/lounge. Savor a meal from the comfort of your room with 24-hour room service.
All 18 rooms provide balconies and safes. Free toiletries are also standard.
Guests staying at Catba Sandy Beach Resort enjoy a private beach, free WiFi in public areas, and a terrace. The front desk is staffed 24/7 to help with dry cleaning/laundry, concierge services, and luggage storage. Other amenities at this beach hotel include laundry facilities, a garden, and barbecue grills.