An unprecedented year deserves an unprecedented shopping experience. Have you ever thought of a shopping staycation to contemplate over an authentic Saigon as local migrants are coming home for Tet? If so, where could be the ideal destination?

On the occasion of the Lunar New Year, some hotels in Ho Chi Minh city have promotional prices for their room rates. Centrally located in the District 1, the Odys Boutique Hotel is offering a special price for its Superior room at only VND800,000 (US$34) per room per night with breakfast.

Saigon Tourist offers an accommodation voucher program for Tet at a preferential price of only VND899,000 (US$35) per room for two people including breakfast. The voucher can be redeemed to one-night-stay at three 5-star hotels of Majestic, Rex and Grand or two night-night-stays at 4-star hotels of Kim Do and De Nhat (The First) hotels.

Shopping

Talking about shopping is talking about District 1 – where all the popular shopping malls gather. From the most high-end brands to outlet goods and limited local boutique brands, just one stroll across District 1’s biggest shopping malls - Sai Gon Centre – Takashimaya, Saigon Garden on Nguyen Hue Walking Street, Vincom Dong Khoi, Diamond Plaza and Saigon Square – is enough to update your Tet wardrobe with all the latest fashion trends of the year.

Eats & treats

A shopping spree can quickly empty both your wallet and stomach. Since it was founded, District 1 has always been Saigon’s  tourist magnet.

If the current restrictions bother your inner wanderlust, try a trip around the world’s cuisine around Saigon, from authentic Chinese restaurants, Japanese ramen restaurants along Le Thanh Ton street, to Korean BBQ restaurants Q, Italian Pizza and Pasta restaurant and all the affordable Vietnamese street food at the underground Asiana Food Town. The world is right at your front door.

A gastronomic heaven: Le Thanh Ton street- the little Japanese town in Saigon. Photo: The Smart Local.

Exploring

District 1 is not only a shopping and eating destination. Do you know that Ben Nghe area – the Ben Thanh market – is the heart of Saigon since the Indochina era?

This South-East Asia cultural and historical journey can be wrapped up within a convenient half-day walking tour starting from the centre of the district. Being the international trading port over the last 300 years, District 1 inherits many remnants of the cultural melting pot which mixed together Vietnamese, Chinese, Khmer, Champa, Indian, and of course, French cultures through all the colonial architectures scattering across the city.

 
The Ben Thanh Market - a should-not-to-miss destination when travel to Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Saigon Expart Services.  

Relaxing

Right at the heart of District 1 is a “resort oasis” where you can loosen down and step right into a state of tranquility. A living-art retrogressing experience back to a Vietnamese affluent life during Saigon’s Indochina past.

The hotels which are located in the heart of the district are the perfect choices of accommodations for a year-end shopping staycation.

Located at the heart of District 1, only 5-minute walk from the shopping malls and Bitexco Financial Tower, you can pass by the hotel to rest or leave your shopping bags amid the exhilarating Tet shopping spree.

The Bitexco cafe at the 52nd of Bitexco Financial Tower is also a good choice for your staycation holidays in Saigon. Photo: Bitexco Financial Tower.  

Another 10-minute walk to the underground Asiana Food Town and Bui Vien Walking street, you can explore the world’s cooking  and content your stomach.  

Not a fan of long walks? Guests who stay at the hotels in District 1 might order dinners right at the hotels they stayed. One of the good choices would be an exclusive fusion menu that is prepared by 5-star Chef at Bup Restaurant & Sky Lounge.

Tet is a time to reconnect with Saigon. And the peaceful city during Tet is perfect for travellers and their families to plan a staycation during this season.

Thuy Duong (Hanoitimes)

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