Tết is an enchanting time of year to experience the rich history and cultural traditions of Vietnam. But what if Lunar New Year didn’t only let you look back, but also offered a glimpse into the future? At InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort, maverick architect and hotel designer Bill Bensley will escort guests on an adventure through the past, present and future of Vietnam this Tết with an original art exhibition.
A series of immersive and innovative activities at InterContinental Danang will delight adults and children alike this February. “A Brief History of Vietnam (According to Bill Bensley)” will transport art lovers on a journey through time, from the 17th to the 22nd Century, with a collection of approximately 30 whimsical paintings that Bensley has created especially for this occasion.
And that’s not all; visitors can discover the time-honoured Vietnamese tradition of making sticky rice cakes with a Banh Chung Mastery class in the Barefoot Garden from 10-13 February, and Prayers at the Spirit House will immerse guests in the spiritual traditions of Tết from 10-12 February. Every day from 1-18 February, the Tết Afternoon Tea at Citron will let loved ones come together and share a selection of auspicious delicacies, and travellers can unwind in elegance at L_o_n_g Bar and sip handcrafted Vietnamese Dynasty Cocktails, overlooking the ocean.
A full calendar of culinary occasions and celebrations, ranging from an upbeat barbecue buffet dinner on the beach at Barefoot to a sparkling Champagne Sunday brunch at Citron, are sure to bring loved ones closer together. For the full calendar of events -> English | Vietnamese.
Throughout Tết, art lovers can discover the rich heritage of Danang and Hoi An (according to Bill Bensley) with a collection of vibrant contemporary paintings. From the early international voyages to Vietnam in the 1600s, to the start of trading with Europe and Korea in the 1700s, ships venturing as far as southern Chile in the 1800s, and the departure of the French in the 1950s, this artistic history is depicted in Bensley’s irreverent and inimitable style. The exhibition then offers a glimpse of 100 years into the future, with a temple in Danang designed by AI and a bold prediction for fashion!
This artistic odyssey concludes with Bensley’s advice for now and the future: “get out there!” 2035 will see the return of the ‘Year of the Rabbit,’ and as Bensley grew up on a rabbit farm, he knows first-hand how fast these bunnies can proliferate! His advice is: “get out into the countryside surrounding Danang and see the wilderness before it disappears.”
The Bensley Art Show will be launched at the Bensley Outsider Gallery, a dedicated exhibition space on the Sky Level of InterContinental Danang, on 11 February 2024 to coincide with Lunar New Year, and will run through until 30 April 2024. Visitors will be able to purchase the artworks, and proceeds will be donated to charitable causes, including the Shinta Mani Foundation, where Bill is the co-founder and the biggest supporter. The artist will also host an exclusive talk, entitled “The Light-Hearted Works of Bill Bensley” at Moulin Rouge on 9 February.
“We are thrilled to host this unique show honouring the history of Vietnam in Bill Bensley’s signature style. Our resort strives to give our guests unique, authentic and entertaining experiences that also communicate the richness of Vietnam’s culture – and this show delivers on all fronts,” said Seif Hamdy, the resort’s General Manager.
Nestled in 39 hectares of lush jungle across four idyllic levels – Heaven, Sky, Earth and Sea – all connected by a funicular railway and cascading down to a private bay with a 700-metre-long sandy beach, InterContinental Danang was the architectural project that propelled Bensley to international stardom. It is also one of Vietnam’s most acclaimed beach resorts and an enchanting place to stay and celebrate Tết in 2024.