“A stunning hotel with spa treatments included in the room rate, set on a perfect beach and just 22km from irresistibly charming Hoi An”
The hotel is arranged around an impressive central reception and restaurant, surrounded by a modern moat and a beautiful stretch of water leading down to the pool and beach. Either side of this are a series of bungalows divided into rooms with private gardens and pools, which are the 87 'villas'.
Almost all of them are Pool Villas (there are also Spa Villas and Beach Villas for groups, plus 1 Deluxe Beach Villa with 2 huge rooms; see below). Generous in size, they are arranged and decorated identically, so no stresses over choosing the best room. They have an L-shaped layout, with a small sitting room and desk at one end, then a bedroom that's semi-divided from the large bathroom at the other end. The toilet and shower are both boxed in with glass, and there's a black granite sunken bath and twin sinks. It’s all very modern - clean-cut and sleek. A large plasma screen can be swung round to watch from your bubble bath or the very comfortable bed, and bamboo-fronted cupboards and a dark wooden bed give a hint of the Eastern.
Floor-to-ceiling windows slide back so you can step into your walled mini-garden, which has a shaded seating area, a patch of insanely perfect grass, 2 sun loungers and a black granite plunge pool just big enough to drift from one end to the other without any effort. All rooms have air-con and with the windows closed you won’t hear a thing from outside. With the windows open it depends who’s in the next-door villa and whether they’re making a noise in their garden.
There are a handful of larger villas that are well suited to families or friends. The essential design is the same but Spa Villas have 2 bedrooms (kingsize and twin) plus a kitchenette. The pool is larger too, stretching the length of the garden. Beach Villas have 2-3 double bedrooms and an even larger pool, and are next to the beach so you get a great ocean view.
The Deluxe Beach Villa is probably better suited to 2 couples, since both its huge rooms come with Jacuzzi baths and his and hers toiletries. The private pool for this villa also boasts an ocean view.
There are 4 restaurants: the larger and smarter main restaurant, Five; the poolside restaurant, Fresh, which will also serve food to your sun or beach lounger, Tonic, primarily a bar, and Fusion Café in Hoi An. Fresh's menu is extensive; slightly generic but the burgers are great.
We highly recommend kicking off your evening with a cocktail at Tonic Bar - the passion fruit and grapefruit daiquiri is sublime. The wine list is long and impressive, too. Food-wise, they also serve Asian style Tapas. Fusion has taken great care to create an interesting menu for Five with some real winners like rice noodle open ravioli with crispy duck, banana blossom salad and tempura pumpkin flowers, or black bean scallops and smoked pancetta. There's also a new Natural Cleanse Programme focused on raw Vietnamese food to aid detoxification and improve wellbeing; dishes include salads, soups, juices and desserts with fresh local ingredients such as green papaya, dragon fruit, coconut, rice paddy herb and pomegranate. Everything we ate was very tasty, and we enjoyed sitting on the balcony that runs around the perimeter of the restaurant.
Breakfast is taken very seriously at Fusion Maia, and served until 10.30am in Five. It’s a real spread; rows of fruit sushi, just-baked pastries, meats, yoghurts, and freshly squeezed carrot, beetroot and cucumber juices. You can also choose eggs. If you fancy being private, you can order breakfast from a more basic, but still delicious, menu, anywhere at any time. So if you’d rather eat a full English breakfast on the beach at teatime, you can do just that.
For a change of scene, head into Hoi An (there's a complimentary shuttle service from the hotel). The Fusion Café, next to the river, provides a haven from the hustle and bustle of the busy lanes. It serves gourmet breakfast (which are included in your room rate) as well as pastries, Asian-inspired fusion food, Western café comfort food, and cocktails.
While in Hoi An, you can't pass up the chance to be adventurous and visit at least one of the numerous little riverside eateries serving traditional Vietnamese fare; ask at reception or in Fusion Café if you'd like a recommendation or just wander 'til something takes your fancy. Miss Ly was a favourite of ours. There are also various restaurants in Danang (a 15-minute walk); again, ask reception for recommendations.
Children are welcome at Fusion Maia - they are not a focal point but families are more than accommodated. Extra beds and baby cots are available, as is babysitting, and staff can lay on special cooking lessons for kids. The main pool is very child-friendly, and when we stayed the guests were approx 50/50 couples/families (although it was over school holidays). Each villa has a private plunge pool, too.
The new Mini Maia kids spa & activity centre aims to give parents time to relax in the spa while the younger visitors get creative with Vietnamese hat or lantern decoration, enjoy exercise classes and mini treatments such as pedicures and head massages.
Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)
All villas can accommodate 1 baby cot and 1 rollaway bed. Spa Villas have 2 bedrooms (1 kingsize, 1 twin) plus a kitchenette; Grand Beach Villas have 3 bedrooms (1 kingsize, 2 doubles)
Available on request
There's a creche, but it's unstaffed so you will need to supervise children. The Mini Maia programme has supervised activities between 1300-1600 daily, such as conical hat painting, lantern design, making mocktails, mini-yoga, tai chi, warrior fitness and beach games
The main pool is unfenced. The spa pool is adults only