|Down by the sea|
|Down by the sea|
Music and passion are always in fashion in Hoi An reports Cam Thuy
When a visiting friend asked me to recommend a good place in Vietnam to meet up for a short Holiday I didn't hesitate. "HoiAn has it all," I said."Cultural sites, beautiful surroundings, peace and quiet, and a nice beach.
Declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO on account of its old architecture. Hoi An lies just a short drive from another World Heritage site, the ancient Cham ruins of My Son. But what really impressed my friend was the nearby beach, where we checked into the Golden Sand Hotel.
Sitting in the hotel's luxurious lobby we had a great view of t he sea, which was turning purple in the late afternoon light. As we sat enjoying the view a band started to play a romantic tune by boney M. Turning, we saw three Philippine singers, talented performers who later introduced themselves as Arturo and Marie Ann, a husband and wife, and Marie Ann's brother Roger. Natives of Ozamis in the Philippines, the trio have spent five summers performing in Vietnam, and have also worked in singapore, China and Malaysia, "Nowhere compares to Vietnam, to Hoi An or to Golden Sand", said Arturo, speaking in Vietnamese.
"What do you like best about Hoi An?" I asked.
"Beef vermicelli soup," said Marie Ann, who promptly invited me to enjoy a bowl of this special soup in the Golden Sand's restaurant. Her husband and brother bought us some beers, impressing us with their friendliness and hospitality.
The restaurant offered a gorgeous view of the resort's garden with the beach and sea beyond. Thanks to the lovely surroundings and our new friends we did not want to leave, but were happy to sit and chat. Famous guests have included Vietnam's former Prime Minister Phan Van Khai, the musicians informed us.
Later, in the resort's newly opened bar I asked the band to play one of my favorite songs, "Hotel California". Listening to my new friends perform this romantic tune I was filled with happiness. It was the perfect end to a wonderful day in Hoi An