“A secluded eco-friendly island escape with sandy coves, delicious food and a wonderful laid-back vibe”
Mango Bay consists of rustic rooms and bungalows dotted around the flower-filled gardens and linked by a series of pathways - you might need the torch provided to find your way back after dark. Most rooms are a single-room thatched cottage, with a wooden decked balcony and loungers or sofas at the front, and a bathroom out back.
It’s fairly simple; beds are basic and there’s definitely a whiff of camping about the whole thing, but it’s also tasteful, comfortable and extremely relaxing. You can see the sea from some bungalows, and all are a 2-minute stroll through the garden to the beach. We liked the little touches, too: Thermos flasks, which can be filled with tea or coffee at the restaurant (free of charge), and an icebox, which will be filled with ice and soft drinks/beers on request.
There's no air-con, partly due to the owners’ eco-friendly concerns and partly due to the rooms not being air-tight (a wooden frieze runs along the top of the walls and is open to the elements). This allows for a cacophony of insect noise and the odd visit from an unexpected bug, but there are fans and beds are covered by a sturdy mosquito net. Bathrooms (shower only) are at the exterior of each bungalow and are half-open to the elements, which enhances the glorious living-with-nature feel.
Veranda Rooms are the cheapest; a little terrace of adjacent small twin/double rooms with a shared veranda out front. These are great if you're on a real budget, but there’s little privacy and a main pathway runs right past your front door.
Next up are the Rammed Earth Bungalows, which are naturally cool due to their eco-friendly construction. Some are detached but others are only semi-detached, which makes for quite an intimate set-up. The Fisherman Bungalows are great for families as they have a double and single bed. There's also a 2-bedroom Family Bungalow (double and twin) with space for a rollaway bed, too.
We'd recommend going for a Plantation Bungalow. They're a little more expensive, but well worth the upgrade to not feel on top of your neighbours. Divided into Sea View and Garden View, they feel spacious inside and can also fit a rollaway bed. The Bay View Villas, which we haven't seen yet, are also particularly roomy, as they're split over 2 levels.
Larger groups should try and bag Reef House, which has 2 double bedrooms (both with ensuite shower rooms), a large terrace with sofas and a hammock, and an open-plan living/dining space. Meals from the restaurant can be brought to you here - an added bonus. It's super popular, so book early if you want it; there's space for a rollaway bed, too.
The On The Rocks restaurant is the heart of the hotel, and one of the best on Phu Quoc. It’s got a chilled, relaxed vibe and comfy sofas, so people tend to congregate here during the day and evening. They play music, which most people enjoy, but some may find it intrusive (a mix of jazz, Cuban and reggae).
The Vietnamese food is delicious; the chef cooks up a storm using Mango Bay’s home-grown vegetables and locally sourced meat and fish. This isn’t generic hotel food, it’s mouthwatering and authentic. The pork in clay pot and crab stir-fry were favourite meals of our trip. There’s a good choice of Western food, too, like pasta and pizza, which will keep kids happy. However, we'd give the puddings (except for the ice cream) a miss - they're not the best. Breakfast is simple but good - juice, coffee, bread, fruit. Eggs are available on request, and the omelettes are great.
There's also a beach bar along the bay, where you can have lunch and dinner, plus amazing cocktails from barman Tin Tin. The menus are reduced versions of the main restaurant’s, although there's the added option of cooking your own mini BBQ, which is fun.
Unless you're staying in Reef House there's no room service, but you can, if you order the day before and pay extra, get them to bring breakfast to your balcony if you prefer to start the day in solitude.
If you want a change of scene, we've heard that Sakura, a 10-minute walk away, is excellent.
This is a great place for children with lots of space to explore, and especially families with a green ethos. Besides its own butterfly garden, there are also vegetable and flower gardens, which are fun for an inquisitive child. The sea is shallow, safe and warm. We saw a group of 2 families, which seemed to work really well. Children under 5 stay for free, and extra beds and baby cots can be provided. The property is pushchair-friendly.
Nearly all rooms could work for families and there are heaps of extra beds available.
The Fisherman Bungalows have a double and single bed. The 2-bedroom Family Bungalow has a double and twin room, plus space for an additional bed. Plantation Bungalows have space for a rollaway bed; some Rammed Earth Bungalows share a terrace. Larger groups should try and bag Reef House, which has 2 double bedrooms (both with ensuite shower rooms), a large terrace with sofas and a hammock, and an open-plan living/dining space. Meals from the restaurant can be brought to you here - an added bonus. It's super popular, so book early if you want it; there's space for a rollaway bed, too
English speaking babysitters available on request
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
Helpfully there's a mobile phone signal everywhere on property