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Inside Bill Gates’ sensational $30,000-a-night Vietnam getaway

The multibillionaire philanthropist is the ninth richest man in the world

Faye James
Senior Editor
May 6, 2024
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When Bill Gates, one of the world's wealthiest and most influential figures, chooses a getaway destination, you can expect nothing less than extraordinary.

This time, his selection was the serene and luxurious InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort, nestled in Vietnam's scenic Son Tra Nature Reserve. 

This exclusive retreat is where Bill, 68, and his girlfriend,  event planner and mom of two Paula Hurd, 60, indulged in a staggering $30,000-per-night experience, demonstrating that his taste for the finer things in life certainly extends to his leisure activities.

Bill Gates exclusive villas at The Intercontinental Danang© Darrin James
Bill Gates exclusive villas at The Intercontinental Danang

The location

Located about 30 minutes up a winding hill from the bustling streets of Da Nang, the InterContinental Danang is more than just a hotel; it's a veritable palace of modern luxury infused with traditional Vietnamese elements. 

Designed by the acclaimed American architect Bill Bensley, the resort is a masterpiece that blends seamlessly into the lush greenery of the surrounding tropical forest, descending gracefully to a secluded, palm-fringed golden beach. Unlike the more tourist-heavy Hoi An, its proximity ensures tranquility, with fewer visitors and an intimate connection with nature.

The location boasts a private beach and lush tropical forest© Darrin James
The location boasts a private beach and lush tropical forest

The exteriors

The resort’s design pays homage to the architectural grandeur of Vietnamese palaces and temples. Its monochromatic color scheme of whites, greys, and dark teak is accentuated by high vaulted ceilings and open spaces that invite natural beauty indoors.

Upon arrival, guests are greeted by playful monkeys and a grand entrance that opens up to breathtaking views of the ocean, dotted with traditional Vietnamese fishing boats. Guests are transported through the vibrant, lush gardens by a funicular designed to resemble a traditional Vietnamese "junk" boat, enhancing the cultural experience. 

The lavish bedrooms© Darrin James
The lavish bedrooms

In the verdant trees, you may be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the rare and endangered Red-shanked doucs that live on the resort. Their face features contrasting colors, with a white muzzle that frames dark, expressive eyes and long, white whiskers and beards that give it a wise appearance.

The villas

The resort boasts 189 exquisitely designed rooms and suites, each promising privacy and exclusivity. Bill Gates' choice of the top-tier accommodations included hiring three opulent three-bedroom villas, each at $10,000 a night located at the far end of the resort for added privacy. 

These villas are the epitome of luxury, featuring dark teak furnishings and sprawling balconies that offer panoramic views of the East Sea.  Each come with their own private infinity pool and a private butler to cater to every need. 

Villas come with their own private pools© Intercontinental
Villas come with their own private pools

The bathrooms in each villa are a lavish affair with dark marble his-and-her sinks, vast mirrors, and a teak-drained rainfall shower. 

A huge stone bathtub, suitable for a relaxing swim, complements the luxurious setting. The choice of Acqua di Parma toiletries adds a sophisticated touch, bringing a sense of timeless elegance to the bathing experience.

Citron restaurant offers incredible views as well as exquisite food© Intercontinental
Citron restaurant offers incredible views as well as exquisite food

The food

Dining at the InterContinental Danang is an adventure in itself. The Citron restaurant offers an expansive buffet that showcases a fusion of Western, Eastern, and local Vietnamese flavors. Local dishes, such as the bánh cuốn, are particularly celebrated. 

These delicate sheets of fermented rice batter filled with minced pork and wood-ear mushrooms, served with a tangy dipping sauce, are a must-try. The restaurant’s outdoor tables, designed like inverted Vietnamese hats, offer stunning views and are a prime spot for enjoying the local cuisine.

The Barefoot restaurant close to the beach offers an incredibly luxurious menu like the Wagyu tenderloin, the biggest oysters you’ve ever seen, or the crazily opulent seafood platter. 

The Club offers guests gourmet breakfast, afternoon tea and cocktails and canapes© Darrin James
The Club offers guests gourmet breakfast, afternoon tea and cocktails and canapes

The club

For those lucky enough to book a villa, they also have complimentary access to the Club InterContinental Lounge is an exclusive privilege reserved for guests staying in Club Rooms, Suites, Penthouses, and Villas. 

It provides a sanctuary where they can enjoy a host of bespoke amenities from early morning until late at night including incredible breakfasts serving up impressive meals like crab omelette or wagyu tartare, afternoon tea which includes treats like matcha scones served with mascarpone cream. From 5.30pm guests are treated to cocktails and free-flowing wine, plus exquisite canapes. 

The private beach offers a variety of activties© Darrin James
The private beach offers a variety of activities

The luxe amenities

For relaxation and entertainment, the resort is equipped with two swimming pools, a state-of-the-art gym, and a cinema. The Mi Sol Spa offers a tranquil escape with its cocoon-like treatment pods scattered around a peaceful lagoon. For those seeking a touch of celebrity glamour, the Pedi:Mani:Cure Studio by renowned nail technician Bastien Gonzalez is available, providing star-quality treatments.

The endangered Duoc monkeys at the resort© Darrin James
The endangered Duoc monkeys at the resort

The activities

The resort’s beach is perfect for sunbathing or engaging in water sports, and guests can explore the bay in traditional coracle basket boats. 

The beach is meticulously combed every hour to ensure the sand stays even and perfectly smooth. Guests are promptly treated to cool water and towels as soon as they rest on one of their luxe beach beds. 

There are also plenty of activities such as yoga, HIIT classes, shore fishing, paddle boarding or even kite sailing to keep the guests amused. 

The extensive kids’ club ensures that younger guests are entertained, making it a family-friendly destination as

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