Entertainment in Vietnam, travel tours: tháng chín 2011

Treat for the palate, Want to sample cuisine spanning all the different regions of Vietnam? Come to Quan Ngon De Nhat (Delicious Inn) in Ho Chi Minh

Such diverse dishes make the restaurant a special attraction filled with eclectic dining discoveries.

Want to sample cuisine spanning all the different regions of Vietnam? Come to Quan Ngon De Nhat (Delicious Inn) in Ho Chi Minh City.                                                    Guests in the mood for a traditional Hue dish can order banh khoai (Hue pancake) or those hankering for some Mekong Delta specialties can devour the banh xeo (crispy fried pancake) on the menu. Northerners missing home can rekindle the hearth with a bowl of banh da cua (noodle with crab).  
Quan Ngon De Nhat is divided into different booths that sell different dishes. The layout imparts the feel of a small market in the countryside, with all dishes arranged and displayed in a refined manner.
Quan Ngon De Nhat15 Hoang Viet Street,
Ward 24, Tan Binh District, HCMC
Daily hours: 10:30 – 23:00

A smal restaurant in HCMC renders the original cuisine and atmosphere of the ancient central imperial city of Hue.

A smal restaurant in HCMC renders the original cuisine and atmosphere of the ancient central imperial city of Hue.                                                    Located on a cul–de–sac off of bustling Cach Mang Thang Tam Street, Mi Tau Restaurant is a real native spot for central folks missing home. The restaurant’s name is inspired by the colloquial identification of “you” and “I” that Hue locals on friendly terms tend to call each other by.
The architecture of Mi Tau Restaurant is supplemented by antique furniture, which creates a warm and sensual atmosphere for diners to relive the romance of the ancient capital. Elegant decorations in soothing colors and pictures depicting the old capital’s landscape adorn the walls. In the corner, wooden shelves full of books and magazines hide away patrons who want to retreat from the crowd for an intimate chat.
The restaurant is also decorated by original works portraying a piano, a viola and a map of Vietnam made from various kinds of butterfly wings.
In addition to the tasteful setting, Mi Tau’s cuisine is really the draw for patrons. Preserving the unique elements of Hue cuisine is the restaurant’s forte. Gastronomic specialties such as Hue’s beef noodle soup, banh beo (thinly sliced flour cake with shrimp toppings), com vua – hoang hau (king and queen rice) will please the most discerning central gourmet.
Traditional dishes like ruoc tom chua (sour salted shredded shrimp and meat), khoai lang duong ngoc(sweet potato) and fish sauce will hark diners back to sweet childhood memories of tantalizing homemade meals. The dessert choices include some delightful offerings like dua dong suong (cold coconut jelly) and other sweet cakes.
Last but not least, the reasonable prices suit all pockets. With dishes ranging from VND20,000-80,000 (US$1.20-4.80), Mi Tau Restaurant is a hole-in-the-wall spot not to be missed.

Magic in the air

It is hard to find such diverse café culture outside Ho Chi Minh City. Unique rooftop bar-restaurant-cafés offer stunning views of the city and a surprising dining experience.                                                    
The heart of Saigon is surrounded by an extraordinarily varied source of inspirations: the city chaos, contrasting new and old architecture, quiet morning light and the exotic heat of the night.
When you find your emotions frozen by the monotonous scenes of motorbike-packed streets and endless electric cables obscuring the blue sky, rooftop cafes may offer a way out, taking you into another world.
One of the best places in town to admire a view of the entire city is the Panorama 33 restaurant and sky lounge.
Centrally located in 33-storey Saigon Trade Center, also known as the Prudential Building in District 1, Panorama 33 sits on the 32nd and 33rd floor and provides the most elevated view of the city.
Just a short journey above the streets, the sounds of smooth music, the aroma of fine cuisine and smiles on waitresses’ faces will greet you at the door, invite you in, and give you a taste of what is yet to come.
The main attraction of this refuge is the stunning view through wide glass windows where you feel like you’re sitting on top of the world.
The right side of the restaurant offers a nice view of the dragon-shaped Saigon River. The area to the left gives customers an opportunity to get a bird’s eye view of the city with all the nasty nuisances becoming tiny blurs and the city’s beauty emerging from the chaos.
The drinks menu goes on forever with a good range of ice cream and fruit smoothies. Vietnamese coffees as well as a full list of beer and wine are also available. Starting at US$4 it’s a bit expensive but the view makes it all worthwhile.
A fine dining experience may be also found in the restaurant’s extensive menu. The cuisine is an exquisite selection of Asian and Western favorites at reasonable prices starting from US$4. Featuring delicious, well-presented and good quality food, the restaurant is a fusion of classy design and professional service.
Also situated on the 32nd floor is an open-air section of the cafe designed for those yearning for a cool breeze and a touch of nature. Diminished views of the city view might disappoint some though.
Whether you are a local or an expat, dining at Panorama 33 is a once in a lifetime experience which could cause you to reignite your love of Saigon.
Also strategically-located in the business and commercial district in the heart of Saigon, the bar-cafe on the 23rd level of the Sheraton Saigon Hotel provides an ideal position to admire the city from on high.
The open-air area tops the list of places to enjoy the fresh air and the stunning views of Saigon. Despite pricey drinks that start at around US$9, the place indeed offers luxury and ambience steeped in stylish music.
Excellent cocktails and a wide selection of wine at the indoor bar are just right for those who want to liven up their night with live music and get their feet moving on the dance floor. North American bands performing nightly, except Monday, are the highlight of the bar-cafe.
Another popular spot overlooking the city from above is the S.J Brother’s restaurant-cafe on the 13th floor of Diamond Plaza.
The cozy atmosphere welcomes even the toughest customer.
Apart from the airy outdoor space, the main attraction of this place is the indoor section designed in contemporary style. Mainly offering Korean cuisine, the restaurant is filled with elegant interior furniture and a series of landscapes.
The menu is extensive with not only traditional Korean food but also European flavors at prices around US$10.
From this advantageous spot, you can admire the Notre Dame Cathedral and the hustle and bustle of downtown Ho Chi Minh City. From this angle, Saigon is covered by the evergreen of the trees surrounding Ba Muoi Thang Tu (April 30) Park, a clean and pure sight rarely found in the heart of the southern metropolis.
Want to invigorate yourself and get out of the same-drabness of Saigon? These places are made just for you.
Just bear in mind one or two things for your exploration: save these places for late afternoon visits to enjoy the sunset and Saigon by night. And remember, it is never a good idea to visit in the rain as you will see nothing but a blurry reflection of yourself in the glass windows.
So step into the elevator with a camera and await a completely different Saigon where small is beautiful as the city fades into the distance.
Saigon Trade Center (Prudential Building): 37 Ton Duc Thang Street, District 1
Diamond Plaza: 34 Le Duan Boulevard, District 1
Sheraton Saigon Hotel: 88 Dong Khoi Street, District 1

Hotpot hotspots in vietnam travel

Want to experience the quintessential dining style of Saigon? Pull up a chair and treat yourself to a delicious, bubbling serving of hotpot to taste a bit of the culture of the vibrant southern hub.                                                    Hotpot has long been a gastronomic favorite of Vietnam and an essential part of Saigonese cuisine. Although the date of its introduction remains unknown, the term “tap pi lu,” which means all sorts of ingredients combined in a pot of broth, was listed on menus in popular restaurants in the 1960s.  
Originating from the Mekong Delta region, the dish offers a variety of flavors featuring different kinds of noodles, vegetables and meats. A sumptuous hotpot produces pleasant smells, flavorful broths, and savory offerings of usual favorites like eel, goat, fish, and beef.
Ho Chi Minh City features a number of restaurants that serve up this yummy dish. These no-frills, plastic stool joints are highly popular with groups of Vietnamese enjoying a relaxing meal after work.
However, over the past few years, locals have witnessed a boom in luxury air-conditioned hotpot restaurants.
With chains sprinkled throughout the downtown area, Ashima hotpot restaurant is a name to remember for its delicious mushroom-based hotpots. Guests expecting a boring one-sided affair will quickly be surprised by a menu that introduces the eclectic selections of tender porcine, portobello, shiitake, and “cow spunk!” Diners choose a soup base – the basic stock goes for VND110,000 – and three or four varieties of mushrooms, veggies and meat for a meal that costs between VND250,000 to VND350,000 for a party of four.
Ashima’s hotpot cookers are set low enough on the tables so diners won’t emerge from their meals well-broiled and the friendly staff is quick to serve with the ladle - not a plus, if one doesn’t enjoy others hovering over one’s plate, but greatly convenient if the intricacies of traditional hotpot are a bear to overcome.
More upscale than other hotpot competitors, Chen specializes in Chinese hotpot, but barbeque and sushi dishes are also featured on the extensive menu. Each table is furnished with hotpot stoves and the food is good value and extremely tasty at prices of around VND75,000 per head.
Located at 64 Pham Ngoc Thach Street in District 3, Soa Soa restaurant brings together the unique flavors of hotpot steeped in a cozy ambience. Upon stepping inside, one will be impressed by the interior design with yellow-colored lights, plants lining the restaurant’s walls, and glass coverings that make the space cool and spacious.
The service provided is excellent, with enough English-speaking staff together to translate the Vietnamese menu and show uninitiated diners the ropes of handling the unfamiliar tools involved with the hotpot dish. Price-wise, large pots big enough to feed at least three are priced starting from VND70,000 and are accompanied by enigmatic dipping sauces.
The addition of beef – there is an option between local or imported Australian beef, the former being cheaper and just as good – adds VND17,000 to the bill, a small price to pay for all the fun of dipping pieces into the broth and fishing it out when cooked.
Fresh egg noodles to go along with the hearty meat and vegetable offerings cost VND8,000, rounding out the comprehensive meal. Soa Soa specializes in allowing customers to design each hotpot dish by selecting their own ingredients.
If one likes to accompany the steaming hot broth with a liquid delicate to the palate, consider ordering the traditional sake wine offered at the restaurant. In addition to hotpot, Soa Soa also serves up some exquisite delicacies such as Soa Soa baked goat, Soa Soa spring rolls, Sichuan duck tongue, and Chinese-style fried rice and noodles.
In contrast, Coca Suki, located at 18-20 Mac Thi Buoi Street, offers the best Thai-style hotpots along with Chinese-style versions. The restaurant provides Thai and Chinese a la cart dishes, but is best known for a traditional hotpot served with a special sauce called “Coca Suki,” prepared from secret ingredients from Thailand.
The restaurant has three floors with separate sections to cater to every customer. Diners who embrace the noisy atmosphere often found in a big restaurant can enjoy eating in a large section on the ground floor. Those preferring a quieter space to talk with friends and families can request semi-private tables. Businessmen or any individuals requiring a completely private dining area for lunch may book one of the four VIP rooms.
Saigon, present-day Ho Chi Minh City, was once referred to as a “cultural hotpot” for its diversity of people, sights, sounds and smells. Whether one wants to enjoy the street-style flavor of reclining in plastic kindergarten stools and kicking back a cold one with the fellows, or indulge in the luxuries of air-conditioned dining among friends, do not miss out savoring the hotpot, where all different ingredients – like cultures – are chopped up, thrown together, and served one steaming bowl at a time.
Soa Soa
: 64 Pham Ngoc Thach St., Dist. 3
Coca Suki: 18-20 Mac Thi Buoi St., Dist. 1
Ashima: 35A Nguyen Dinh Chieu St., Dist. 1
11 Me Linh Square, Dist. 1
11 Tu Xuong St., Dist. 3
Hotpot accompanied by various kinds of raw meat and beef is one of the most popular varieties.
Reported by Kim TNien

Vietnamese Folk Music

Vietnamese Folk Music

Vietnam has 54 groups of people and each one has their own folk music. This is for The Kinh or Viet people.

Entertainment in Vietnam Vietnamese culture

Entertainment in Vietnam
Vietnamese culture, rituals and numerous festivals cover the major facets of entertainment in Vietnam. The Vietnamese people have a festival or two to celebrate every month and they celebrate them with great pomp. Celebrations, colors, fun, music and dance form an integral part in Vietnamese culture.
Some of the most entertaining festivals in Vietnam are the Tet Nguyen Dan (the New Years Eve in Vietnam), Do Son Buffalo Fighting Festival, Vietnam and the Tet Trung Thu (Mid-Autumn Festival), Vietnam among many others.

However the Vietnam entertainment scene is not only about the festivals. Cinemas, music and nightlife play equal part in the entertainment scene in Vietnam. Cinemas in Vietnam have changed their flavor with the changing political and social circumstances in Vietnam. Films on Vietnam are a common feature in the international film scene. The domestic film industry in Vietnam is also no less in capacity with a growing cinema going crowd.
Vietnam also has a lively culture for music which is a popular source of entertainment in Vietnam. Vietnamese opera and theatrical music is strongly influenced by the Chinese opera. In this area water puppetry has undergone a radical revival in the recent past in Vietnam. Besides pop music in nightclubs in Vietnam is a popular feature. 

Nightlife in Vietnam thrives in Ho Chin Minh City, Vietnam and Hanoi, Vietnam. These are popular places for entertainment in Vietnam among the youth for their karaoke music and dance music. With the popularity of nightclubs on a high, the number of western nightclubs is also increasing in Vietnam.