The authorities of Nha Trang City, Khanh Hoa Province, are seeking ways to deal with false advertisements by local hotels.
Bavico Hotel has its four-star ranking revoked
Statistics from Vietnam National Administration of Tourism show that Khanh Hoa Province has many self-proclaimed hotels. Several three to four-star hotels only have 65 rooms and sparse furniture. Many don't even have housekeeping staff and other services.
Nguyen Thi Mai, a tourist from Hue, said after seeing the online advertisement and discount programme, she decided to book a room at a three-star hotel.
"The room had only enough space for a bed, a wardrobe and a toilet. We ate breakfast in the reception room," she said.
Some tourist flats are advertised to be five-star but the included services are weak. The prices for those flats are listed at VND800,000 (USD34) to VND2m a night but discounted to only VND450,000.
Le Van Son, vice chairman of the Nha Trang - Khanh Hoa Tourism Association, said self-proclaimed star hotels and the unplanned boom of condotels had badly affected the tourism sector.
Local individuals sold their homes as four or five-star tourists flats. Some Chinese and South Korean businessmen have opened low-quality services.
Khanh Hoa Department of Finance said they had fined a three-star hotel owner on Tran Phu Street for overcharging.
According to the department, they were able to fine the hotel because of complaints about small rooms, false advertisement and unlisted prices. The tourists also provided all invoices and papers as evidence. Other cases are more difficult.
As of June, Khanh Hoa has 773 accommodation facilities with 42,275 rooms. There are 26 five-star facilities, 23 four-star facilities and 37 three-star facilities.
In order to be given the stars, the hotels must meet requirements about location, architecture, equipment, service quality, housekeeping staff, security and food hygiene as well as other criteria.
Nguyen Thi Le Thanh, deputy director of the Department of Tourism said owners of self-proclaimed hotels and those making false advertisements could be fined from VND50m (USD2,100) to VND70m.
International hotel management brands are increasing their presence in Vietnam to benefit from the potential the country possesses in resort real estate.
Five-star hotels outperformed their four-star counterparts across several criteria as shown by the latest survey by Grant Thornton Vietnam on the local upscale lodging industry.