MangoVine
Adventures in East Asia

Western sensibilities at Hung Vuong Plaza

After a month and a half in Hong Kong eating Chinese food and continuing in Vietnam, I was craving for some western food. It's not that I don't like Chinese or Vietnamese food, but there's only so much I can take without throwing some fries in the mix. Terrible I know...

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Luckily, the nearby Hung Vuong Plaza in District 5 - just a block away from where we're staying in Vietnam, helped. The top floor has a food court with a number of different shops selling pasta, grills and burgers albeit with a slightly Vietnamese slant as well as dim sum, noodles etc. I chose some kind of grilled meat with fries, although on a separate occasion, I did order a spag bol which was a bit like chow mein with tomato sauce.

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To a westerner, the Hung Vuong Plaza is a little like a break away from the chaos on Ho Chi Minh's streets and the cobbled together makeshift displays of smaller road side businesses.

The plaza contains several floors of international upmarket branded goods from designer wear to cosmetics, leather goods to sports supplies. You get the idea. It seems to cater to Vietnamese with more money to spend than the average shopper and inherently draws tourists and expats who are used to this kind of retail experience.

Even the expansive "drive way" flanking the entrance, allowing taxis to pull up, is manned by a number of security staff whose job it seems is to maintain a distance between the plaza and the chaotic melee of motorcyclist traffic, creating a peaceful buffer and transition for Hung Vuong's guests.

By all means, Hung Vuong Plaza is not the only place of this kind in Ho Chi Minh, and others are easily recognisable simply by the splattering of brand names outside blocks of retail units.


This entry posted in : Food. Shopping. Vietnam.

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