Vietnamese hotel group traces Originals brand debut to Darwin

Hotel reception

Fusion will add a third brand to its portfolio with the opening of the first hotel under the personality-driven Originals concept in Ho Chi Minh City next year.

Each Originals hotel will bear the name of a pioneering artist, inventor, scientist or social leader. For the inaugural member of the collection, they’ve selected Charles Darwin, the British botanist, scientist and naturalist who redefined mankind’s place in the universe.

Darwin – a Fusion Original is currently under construction in the heart of Saigon’s District 1, less than 200m from the city’s iconic opera house and close to shops, restaurants, cafés, bars and tourist hotspots.

The 88-room hotel will pay homage to its namesake by creating an air of 19th-century discovery and adventure. Fusion’s designers have focussed on Darwin’s studies of plants, animals and people from all over the globe and will honour this by featuring botanical motifs, super-sized extracts of Darwin’s manuscripts, and a palette of all-natural tones and textures in the interiors.

There will also be a copy of Darwin’s most famous publication, On the Origin of Species, inside every bedside unit.

The ground-floor lobby, named Beagle Bar, will host regular live music and spoken-word events lubricated by old-school rum cocktails and local craft ales.

Meanwhile, Origins Restaurant, home to a re-imagined breakfast concept known as T.O.A.S.T. (The Original Answer to Snooze Time), will serve dishes inspired by Charles Darwin’s global journeys.

“With Darwin and every Fusion Original that comes after it, you’ll never quite know what to expect,” added Remco de Hoog, Fusion’s chief architect. “We love shaking things up, and we think our guests will really enjoy the feeling of entering the unknown each time… in a good way, of course!”

Since its launch in 2008, Fusion has worked to marry hotels with wellness-inspired resorts. The company has opened five resorts and hotels in Vietnam so far, with a team now boasting more than 1,500 employees, including 300 spa specialists.

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