hirerob sullivan


Asiana Plaza - Bitexco Financial Tower - Cantavil House Complex - Cao Oc Ciat Building - Chennai (India) Real Estate - Diamond Plaza - Dong Nai Port Joint Stock Company - Hoang Quan Plaza - Houses in Ho Chi Minh City (from Layered) - Importance of Legal Papers in Vietnam - JW Marriot Hanoi - Mui Ne Properties - Online Realtors - Royal City Project (Hanoi) - Sofitel Vinpearl Resort and Spa - Thu Thiem Peninsula Development - Why Are Vietnamese Landlords So Obnoxious? - Why Buy Property in Vietnam? - Why is Vietnam so Expensive? - Zen Plaza


» Welcome to Ho Chi Minh City (Otherwise Known as Saigon)
» Things to See in Ho Chi Minh City (A-Z): Cholon
» Cao Dai Temple
» Chu Chi Tunnels
» Things to Buy: Vietnamese Modern Art
» Things to Eat in Ho Chi Minh City: Restaurant Guide
» Places to Party in Ho Chi Minh City: Bars and Clubs
» Places to Stay in Ho Chi Minh City: Saigon Hotels
» Getting There: Ho Chi Minh City's Tan Son Nhat International Airport
» Further Afield: Mui Ne
» Even Further Afield: Phu Quoc Island
» Buying Real Estate in Vietnam?
» Location, Location, Location
» Obnoxious Landlords

» Learning Basic Travel Vietnamese
Image copyright Robert Sullivan

Monday, January 25, 2010

Where is the Best Place to Live in Ho Chi Minh City?

HO CHI MINH CITY HAS A STRANGE GEOGRAPHY IN MY MIND AT LEAST. We all build up our own mental maps of places we spend time in, flavored by our experiences and setbacks. If you are new to this place, then perhaps a geography lesson is not out of place here. The lack of a ring road means that inner-city roads are crowded with heavy crosstown traffic. The lack of traffic lights mean that crossing such roads as a pedestrian can be a daunting task, indeed. I have been burned so many times I now avoid walking in parts of the city, such as the riverfront, despite it being one of more beautiful locations. According to Easy Property, one of Vietnam's largest real estate agents, there are certain parts of town which are favored by expatriates. They include the CBD (Central Business District) of Districts 1 & 3 (for the convenience, naturally), and the greenery and clean air of the An Phu, Thao Dien, Binh An Wards of District 2 (just over the Saigon Bridge @15-20 minute drive). Other increasingly popular areas are in Tan Binh (around the airport @20-30 minute drive); and around the ever developing Saigon South area of District 7 (20-30 minutes drive)." If you are an expat attempting to establish yourself in Saigon, perhaps you ought to check out these places first.

Local teenagers play volleyball on a vacant beachside lot: Mui Ne, Vietnam

A little more information about District 2, again from Easy Property: "The area on the far side of the Saigon bridge is, by Saigon standards, a green & pleasant land. Though still true, more and more of the green land plots (and they have all, frequently, been sold many times over by speculators) are now being developed into houses, with a few of the larger plots turned into apartments or more residential compounds. Several hundred expats (most with families) live in the area and there is the usual assortment of expat spin-off services and facilities: a supermarket, sports, leisure & recreation clubs. Most of the villas are two storey and from 700sqm to 1,500sqm gross, with usable areas range from @250sqm upwards, and many with swimming pools. Inside the various compounds, sizes are smaller but with the benefit of communal facilities and landscaping & security. Consequently, for those expats with above average budgets and a longing for some peace and quiet, amid what must be the noisiest city in the world, or with children, An Phu has deveoped a reputation since it still has some large properties with walled gardens or in landscaped compounds, that no longer exist elsewhere in the city."

And regarding District 7: "The formation of the Saigon South urban area on 2,600 hectares is meant to create conditions for urban and rural districts in the surrounding areas of District 7, District 8, Nha Be and Binh Chanh to develop. With the (at long last), construction of a couple bridges, Saigon South is no longer only accessible via the inadequate Kinh Te bridge by the Saigon Port. It is now possible to travel from the Phu My Hung (PMH) New Residential Area (often referred to as Saigon South) to the CBD in 15 minutes. After years of relative inactivity, the 600 hectare @USD$250m PMH Joint Venture have started construction of the first of many planned apartment buildings and houses. Several international schools; the Franco Vietnam hospital; RMIT (Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology) University; and other such ancillary service suppliers & facilities have also committed to a future amongst the landscaped greenery. The government have now also approved the construction of the 1,950m long USD$114m Phu My bridge, that ill connect the city ring road (that runs through PMH) with the CBD via the 770 hectare USD$632m Thu Thiem New Urban Area of District 2. Apartments are being sold from @USD700/sqm and appearing on the secondary market to rent from USD$500/month upwards. Villas cost upto USD$500,000 and rentals start from USD$1,500/month."


o n l i n e + r e a l t o r s

Bat Dong San:
BẤT ĐỘNG SẢN is of course Vietnamese for real estate, and from a SEO perspective at least, this site has the market cornered. Viewable in English and Vietnamese, the site includes a law library, news feed and brokerage service. As the site reads: "You have properties and want them to be sold out or rent out quickly?
"You are very busy to sell or rent them?
"Let us do that for you.
"With reasonable fees 1% of total value for each sold property or 1 month rental for each leased property or you allow us to earn the markup value if you donft want to pay the above fees.
"Just fill out the Form then send to us with 1 – 8 photos of your property to:"

Chao Co: Phone: 84-913-804-550. Web: Email:
This website, written in English and Japanese, prvides a full range of services for expats in Vietnam -- from real estate to car rental and travel plans, to business investment consultancy.

Craig's List:

Like other invaders from the past, Craig is on his way to conquering Vietnam. Well, at least the classified real estate market in Vietnam (and they say that land equals power!) For the latest offerings from Ho Chi Minh City, hit Craig up.

Easy Property: Phone: 848/840 7962. Web:
This website touts itself as Vietnam's premier real estate services network. It is a big claim to make, but the listings at Easy Property are in a word, exhaustive. A huge range of properties are listed, ranging from serviced apartments in District 3 (the rent is between US$1100 to $2100 a month) to potential golf course sites in Dong Nai Province, to the entire Hoa Binh Towers in the capital Hanoi, to "possibly the best villa in An Phu" (that one is going at US$6000 a month in rent.)
Along with all the listings, Easy Property has realms of important information about the state of the rental and real estate market in Vietnam. There are nuggets of information like this, concerning international standard serviced apartments: "Ho Chi Minh City only has a combined stock of serviced apartments of about 2,000 units, an inadequate number relative to the ever increasing demand. Thus rentals have almost doubled in less than 5 years to the current levels. However, local investors have recently seen the investment opportunities available and are thus now rapidly filling the supply gap with a wide variety of new developments, both big and small. By the end of 2006, it is estimated that the number of units available will have doubled to over 4,000 units with several thousand more under construction. Though many of these are being built for sale on the local market (foreigners are unable to buy or sub-lease), many are being bought to rent to expats, at prices ranging from USD$800 – USD$2,700 per square meter, with a view to obtaining rentals from USD$10 – 30 per square meter per month.
"However, given the relatively stable number of expats living in Vietnam, coupled with strict new foreign employment registration stipulations, and the dramatic increase in stock, one can foresee rentals falling to levels more in line with those of ASEAN regional competitor cities over the course of the next few years.
"The largest and best located serviced apartment buildings with the widest range of facilities and services were constructed in the mid to late 1990's by foreign developers with deep pockets – typically USD$20+ million Joint Ventures. Since then, very few foreign investors have ventured into the domestic market. These established buildings have all had average occupancies of over 90% since @2002 and so are able to command premium rentals. Some offer short term accommodation (at up to USD$50/sqm per month) but many have waiting lists and so are only interested in minimum 12 month contracts. The majority of these are in the downtown area but some are a 20 minute commute."

Living in Vietnam: 42/63 Nguyen Hue Street, Dist.1. Phone: 08/291 0366. Web:
There is a lot of information on this website about living in Vietnam, how to get a visa or a job, and how to deal with the people in Vietnam. There is also a forum for travellers and expatriates, and lesson plans for those wanting to study Vietnamese. For those looking for real estate in Saigon (or Hanoi for that matter), this website also delivers. For example, if you were hoping to rent a two-bedroom apartment in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City's District 1, you might be able to find one for US$1200 a month. If a French colonial style villa with three bedrooms, garden and a swimming pool was closer to what you were looking for, you could find one in District 3 for US$3000 a month. These are just some of the current rental properties listed on Living in Vietnam. There is a whole database of listings there, from apartments to office blocks -- it it is worth checking out.

P Index: 140 Nguyen Van Thu, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City. Phone (8) 910 6445. Web:
Vietnamese language site including listings and market information.

Property World: Web: Property World Vietnam.
As the name suggests, Property World has a searchable database of properties all over the world. Bulgaria seems to get a good representation in the database, given that country's current popularity with European buysres. When it comes to Vietnam, on the other hand -- well, in a recent search for properties for sale in Greater Vietnam ranging in price from US$0 to US$1000000000, Property World only returned one result. This was a property in the Saigon Pearl development at 92 Nguyen Huu Canh, HCMC. You can read about Saigon Pearl further down the page under the "Coming Developments" header.

Saigon Bat Dong San: 31 Ly Tu Trong, P. Ben Nghe, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City. Phone: +84 (8) 823 4702/8013. Web:
Vietnamese language real estate site.

Vietnam House Rentals:
Vietnam House Rentals & Real Estate (otherwise known as Toan Cau Co. Ltd) specializes in: apartments, serviced apartments, single private houses, luxury villas and offices for lease to travellers, professionals, and the legions of International Vagabonds who are flocking to Viet Nam at the present, as well as local customers.

Vietnam Total:
This site has plenty of listings and information about properties in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh and other cities like Vung Tau. At the time of writing (February 2007) there are family houses listed on Vietnam Total at Nguyen Huu Canh ($117,000), a stunning beach front property on Tran Phu St in Vung Tau ($1,000,000), a rubber harvesting farm in Bing Duong ($2,064,000), and a rental property in Hanoi (no price given). The website also offers a limited news resource including this recent story (recent for February 2007): "US-based Rockingham Asset Management company has gotten the license for its $1billion resort on Phu Quoc Island in southern Vietnam. The island will be a luxury resort with more than 2,000 rooms and villas for rent, a 6-hole golf course, a motor racetrack, a tourism school, and other tourism facilities. The resort should be completed in 2015."

VVG Property Development:
This piece of online property lists land and resort developments, including the Cua Lap Beach Resort Development. The website claims: "A very visible sign of Vietnam's leap towards the 21st century is the horizontal construction sector (hotels, multiple-dwellings, and offices). On these pages, we feature the Ho Chi Minh City Region, with emphasis on Vung Tau and Saigon. The HCMC region (including Bien Hoa, Binh Duong, Vung Tau and Saigon) has a real (unofficial) population in excess of 11 million people, more than half the total foreign invested capital (US$ 25.15 billion or 55%), and 3,147 (63% of all) foreign invested projects (Jan05).
" "There are similar developments in the central region around Dalat, and in the north, particularly in Hanoi. We intend to expand these pages over time to cover the nation."
" The site boasts a section called Monday in Saigon, a photographic database of developments in the business capital over the years. Monday in Saigon promises: "Many people interested in Vietnam, both those living here and abroad, enjoy photos of boys on water buffalo, women in conical hats of straw, street vendors hawking almost everything, the polychrome vistas at outdoor markets, and the fast-moving motorized traffic, peppered with ox-drawn carts.
"Foreign and Domestic visitors to HCMC rarely lift their heads up to see all the new signs of economic growth. Most are too busy running and dashing about, looking forward. Particularly when driving or crossing the streets of this bustling metropolis, rarely do we lift our eyes to see what has grown around us.
"The V V G Staff began taking photos for these pages in December 1997. We are constantly updating them to keep up with developments. The most recent photos were taken only days before this page was last updated.
"Here are photos of vertical construction. We want potential investors to see the City of today and tomorrow, not just yesterday. Every new building pictured has been completed in the past four years. We also show buildings in which construction waits to recommence, and sites where it has not ever begun. A few older structures recently renovated are also shown simply to retain the flavor of what is still Saigon."

h i g h r i s e + d e v e l o p m e n t s

ONE OF THE AMAZING THINGS ABOUT VISITING HO CHI MINH CITY REGULARLY IS NOTICING JUST HOW FAST THE SKYLINE OF THIS CITY CHANGES. New buildings go up all the time, transforming this once low-rise sprawling tin shack kind of city into another Oriental supermetropolis -- another Bangkok or Singapore. Inside those high-rise steel and glass needles are often where foreign residents prefer to live. If you want to know about coming developments of a high-rise nature, you are in the right subdirectory.

Before we start, here is a word from San Francisco architect Mel Schenck, who wrote: "Most of the housing in Ho Chi Minh City, like all of the other cities in Vietnam, is four or five stories tall. This is true for new middle-class houses even in the smaller villages. I understand there is some new high-rise housing in Hanoi in the new suburban new urban areas, but I did not get out to see them. In HCMC, some Taiwanese investors built a new high-rise apartment complex in the Cholon (Chinese) area of Saigon. Very few of these apartment or condo units have been rented or sold. In speaking with some HCMC citizens, they felt that they had not sold because the units are too expensive compared to normal units in Saigon, and the Vietnamese much preferred the walk-up four-story houses to the elevatored high-rise housing. This is certainly counter to the Chinese pattern of replacing low-rise housing in all of their cities with high-rise housing. Interestingly, the density of population per hector or acre for these high-rises is about the same as low-rise housing since these new high rise towers are usually towers in the park with a lot of space (usually wasted, in my opinion) around them. I vote with the Vietnamese -- I prefer my density in active low-rise units rather than sterile units in the sky, unless the high-rises are as dense as in Hong Kong."

<< Picture copyright Robert SullivanDiamond Plaza: 34 Le Duan St (corner of Pham Ngoc Thach St), District 1. Phone: 848 825 7750. Email: Web:
When I first noticed this huge green building during my most recent visit to Vietnam, my thought was: "Is that whole building dedicated just to diamonds?", especially because there seemed to be a gem shop visible on the first floor. Of course, Vietnam is not really a player on the diamond front, and the Diamond Plaza is not a glorified Bangkok style stone ripoff joint. In fact, it is reportedly one of the hottest addresses in town and is virtually a city within a city within a city. Like Roppongi Hills in Tokyo in Japan (or the more recent Tokyo Midtown development), this is an integrated development (the largest in Vietnam), with entertainment, shopping, apartments and offices all under the same roof. On the first floor there are plenty of jewelry stands, as well as the latest aftershave products, watches and so on. I prefer to buy my watches on the streets (and I get what I pay for!) Further upstairs you can find clothes, neckties, furniture... and it wouldn't be a Vietnamese department store without a darkened 10-pin bowling alley and video game arcade somewhere at the top of the retail space. Beyond that it is offices and apartments, some of them overlooking the Reunification Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral and April 30th Park, the City's most mature green space.

<< Picture copyright Hoang Quan Plaza: 34 Le Duan St (corner of Pham Ngoc Thach St), District 1. Phone: 848 825 7750. Email: Web:
Plaza seems to be the buzz word of the decade in Vietnam, it creeps up in development names as insidiously as "Hills" does in Tokyo, Japan. There are any number of "plazas" in Ho Chi Minh City and greater Vietnam at the moment, none of them true plazas in the Italian sense of the word. It doesn't matter, because Tokyo doesn't really have any real hills (unless you count tall buildings as hills.) In Asia these days English or Italian or French words are only used for decoration, the same way westerners cook Asian dishes at home without comprehending the cultural matrix from which they sprung. Postmodern, but potlatch it ain't.
This particular non-plaza is located in the going off south of Ho Chi Minh City, near the Nguyen Van Linh highway.
Comforts: - The apartments are designed luxuriously, modernly, and warmly. - Restaurant, health care center, swimming pool, recreation-shopping center, kindergarten, park, basement garage, c - Professional management board and security staff make sure 24/24 security. - Intercom/Video phone systems help the hosts to easily identify their guests. - Elevators and stairs are set up reasonably to make sure thorough and safe transport. - Central gas and American technological Notifier automatic fire alarm systems are installed at each apartment.

The Panorama.
The Panorama tọa lạc trong khu Kênh Đào (được mô phỏng theo Khu Kênh Đào tại Mỹ) vốn dĩ từ lâu như tự hữu một �chiếc máy điều hòa khổng lồ�Etừ thiên nhiên cảnh quan bao quanh. Trong đó, tự nhiên sắp sẵn những hình khối theo �tone�Exanh chủ đạo với nhiều biến tấu: gam xanh của dòng sông cảnh quan dọc theo thế đất, bên kia sông là mảng xanh dự kiến quy hoạch sân Golf 36 lỗ; trên là bầu trời trong vắt nối liền hai mảng xanh ấy như một đường chân trời xa xa mà khoảnh khắc nào trong ngày cũng có thể tận hưởng; gần hơn là hai mảng xanh công viên đô thị rộng với diện tích cộng gộp gần tròn 16ha gần như viền gọn ôm Khu Kênh Đào ở giữa. Có ví von Kênh Đào là một �thành phố của cảnh quan và gió�Ethì cũng chẳng có gì là quá bởi sự giao hòa của thiên nhiên hoa lá, sự kết hợp mặt nước, bầu trời, sự gặp gỡ của nắng, của gió và bản hòa tấu của những âm thanh tự nhiên như tạo nên một bức tranh đẹp đưa luồng gió mát ùa vào từng ngôi nhà trong Khu Kênh Đào. Trong cảnh sắc ấy, The Panorama sang trọng với 6 building kiêu sa vươn cao ngay cửa ngõ phía Tây vào Khu Kênh Đào.

Saigon Pearl DevelopmentSaigon Pearl: 92 Nguyen Huu Canh Street, Binh Thanh District. Phone: 848/821 9999. Web:
According to the promotional material, Saigon Pearl, a high-rise apartment complex on Saigon River, represents "the largest, most elaborate development ever created in Vietnam." Due to come online from 2007 to 2009, Saigon Pearl incorporates eight 37-storey apartment buildings, a lavish clubhouse, two office towers and a large-scale shopping mall. Quoting from that promotional material again: "Picture living right beside the enchanting Saigon River, surrounded by a tropical paradise of natural and landscaped gardens. Watching clouds of mist swirl across the water as you prepare for the day ahead. Here, secluded from the rush and roar of daily life, the natural beauty of the scenery constantly seduces you..."
The following properties are available for sale: two-bedroom unit, three-bedroom unit, and penthouse. Visit the website listed above to find about pricing and other details.

<< Picture copyright Chaocom Real EstateZen Plaza: 54-56 Nguyen Trai Street, District 1.
Zen Plaza is a 14-storey tower in the heart of Saigon consisting of an 8-storey shopping complex, five floors for offices and a penthouse for events. Hit Chaocom if you are interested in hiring some of that office space. You will also be able to see floorplans and a price list. The building itself is something of a landmark with its distinctive black and white facade, and is a popular meeting place. I myself was due to meet Jennette, a local Chinese lass, outside the front of Zen during my visit back in March 2007, but the venue was changed to Ben Thanh Market. True to the Japanese sounding origin of the tower's name, on the 7th floor of the Zen Plaza you will find the Sushi Bar, whose motto is "not only tasty but funny". In fact, this whole building is like a little chunk of Japan dropped into the heart of Vietnam, and thriving in its new environment. At Zen Plaza, the emphasis is on fashion.
According to the Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee: "In August 1999, Nhat Nam Shopping Center was put into operation as a joint venture between Vietnamese and Japanese partners. In August 2002, the Ministry of Planning and Investment endorsed the plan to turn the joint venture into a 100% Japanese-owned project, and in October 2003, Zen Plaza came into being.
"The difference between Nhat Nam and Zen Plaza is that Zen specializes in fashion. 'We see Vietnam's potential in this industry,' Fukukawa says. 'First, many more Vietnamese are interested in fashion as the economy develops.' Another reason for Zen to be a fashion center is because this 12-story building is on the part of Nguyen Trai Street dubbed Saigon's fashion street. A third reason is that Vietnam has a strong garment industry and a contingent of young and talented designers.
"However, these young designers are encountering difficulties in developing their career. 'They lack professional training, lack materials to realize their creations, lack a stage to make the public know about their designs and lack capital for start-ups,' Fukukawa says.
"One of Zen Plaza's ambitions is to help bridge these gaps by providing young designers with finance and space so that they have a place to show their creativity. Zen is one among a few organizations in Vietnam to hold regular fashion shows. These shows always feature young designers.

c o m i n g + d e v e l o p m e n t s


<< Asiana Plaza: 39 Le Duan Boulevard, District 1.
If you think the name of this 13,600 square metre complex has a vaguely Korean sound, you would be right: it was developed by a partnership including Kumho, the 8th largest conglomerate in South Korea and the owner of Asiana Airlines. As with all great developments there has been a lot of controversy with the development of Asiana Plaza, but at the start of 2008 I did a walkby of the site with my new Vietnamese girlfriend, and it seems to be coming online. Surrounded by Le Duan, Hai Ba Trung, Nguyen Du and Le Van Huu streets, Asiana Plaza when finished will comprise a luxury apartment building, a five-star hotel and retail stores.
As VietnamNet reported: "As planned, Asiana Plaza, invested in by Asiana Plaza Saigon, a member of the Republic of Korea's (ROK) Kumho Group, has the total investment capital of $223mil. The complex will cover an area of 13,632 sq m at No 39 Le Duan street in district 1, the most advantageous position in the city, which many investors have been eyeing.
"The complex will consist of three buildings, including a 21-storey office building, a 21-storey international hotel, a 32-storey apartment building, and a trade centre area.
"The complex will be situated near other high-grade buildings of the city, including Diamond Plaza, Sofitel Hotel, Prudential's office building, Saigon Tower and Metropolitan. It will also not be far from the buildings of the US and French General Consulate, Cathedral and the city's Post Office. Located in such a position, the complex will be especially valuable and it is hoped will bring a new face to the city.

<< Cantavil House Complex: An Phu Ward, District 2.
With construction expected to be completed by 2012, the Cantavil House Complex will comprise 200 top-end flats and offices for rent in two 36-storey towers (according to VOV News.) The development will also include an international trade center, recreational area, cinema and swimming pool.

<< Cao Oc CIAT Building: 26 Trần Cao Vân, Phường 6, Quận 3, TP.HCM.

<< River Garden: Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), District 2.
This development, which is anticipated to be completed in April 2008, will feature 36 two and three-bedroom units overlooking the Saigon River. The facilities will include: outdoor swimming pool, tennis court, badminton court, basketball court, handball court, children’s playground, open restaurant, bar-cafĂ©, bowling, gym & health club, steam bath & sauna, beauty salon and multi-purpose hall. For more details, click here.

<< Thu Thiem Peninsula: Major development plan.
Earlier this year (2006) the HCMC Government unveiled plans to turn the Thu Thiem Peninsula across the Saigon River into a new center. The Thu Thiem new urban area will be HCM City's center for finance, commerce and services, officials said at a press conference on the announcement of the detailed plans for Thu Thiem. "Thu Thiem will be a modern center, an extension of HCM City's existing downtown," said Vu Hung Viet, head of the Thu Thiem Investment and Construction Authority, or Thu Thiem ICA.
Thu Thiem will be divided into five zones: a central zone, a multi-functional zone along the East-West Highway, a northern residential zone, an eastern residential zone, and a swamp zone to the south.
The central zone, which will become a commercial and financial centre, will house multi-storey office buildings, a convention centre, and a central plaza and public park. This area is expected to be complete by 2010.
The central zone is expected to employ the largest number of people and house 40,000 residents.
The so-called swamp zone to the south will eventually house a botanical garden, an aquatic park, a sports centre, an arena and a resort hotel.
The existing mangrove swamps in the area will be preserved as part of the cultural heritage of Thu Thiem and Ho Chi Minh City.
Public transport will include a subway line and station in the central zone, and bus and waterbus services that would link the area with District 1.
Five bridges over the Saigon River will be built, including the Thu Thiem and Ton Duc Thang bridges, a bridge to link the peninsula with district 2, and another to connect the area with District 7.
A pedestrian bridge over the river will link Me Linh Square in District 1 with Thu Thiem.
The eastern residential zone and most of the central zone will be built during the first five-year phase.
The second phase, from 2010-2015, will develop 180ha of the central zone and the multi-function zone along the East-West Highway.
The third phase from 2015 to 2020 will develop 87ha, and the fourth phase from 2020 to 2025, 120ha.

c o n d o m i n i u m + j o i n t s


"Condominiums in Ho Chi Minh City have been in high demand for the last two months, despite the fact that prices have gone through the roof.

"Over the past two weeks, Ms. Kim Loan from the Central Highland province of Lam Dong has been trying to find a condo in the city for her daughter, who is to start university next year.

"A real estate agent showed her a 364-million VND condo at the An Loc Apartment Building in Go Vap District and another in Binh Thanh District at nearly 1 billion VND.
"'Possibly I will choose the one in Go Vap District, a 64-square-meter condo with a living room, a bedroom, and a bathroom,' she said.

"An Loc, a newly built 12-storey apartment building, is about to be put into service. Most of its condos are already sold, but some owners will transfer ownership for those willing to pay a few dozen to a hundred VND million higher, according to property companies.

"Following the increased demand many condominiums, particularly high-quality ones, have been constructed in the city. In mid-September, a nine-storey apartment building comprising 174 condominiums and covering an area of over 4,600 square meters in Thu Duc District was inaugurated. Up to now, 110 condos have been sold at 6.5 million VND per square meter.

"Meanwhile, construction of a high-quality 18-storey complex in Binh Thanh District just began recently. Each condo will be 80 to 93 square meters in size, with three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen and a living-room, with a price tag of 780 to 945 million VND.

"However, these prices are far less than those in the city center. A My Vinh condo in District Three is selling for US$137,000. Forty-four of its 62 units have already been sold although construction of the building itself will not be completed until next year, reported its investor Thao Loan Co., Ltd.

"Thao Loan Co., Ltd. is also building another first-rate 12-storey complex in District Three. The price of each unit will range from $US 150,000 to 170,000.

"The demand for condos is on a sharp increase, commented Le Quang Hang, Deputy Chief Executive of the Hoang Quan Real Estate Co., Ltd. Therefore, the firm is planning to build more condos in the near future. The Hoang Quan Company targets young customers who are interested in condos because they are affordable, Mr. Hang said.

"High-quality condos have sufficient family conveniences, a nice environment and good security conditions, explained Deputy Director of the Asia Commercial Joint Stock Bank Real Estate Supermarket Vo Dinh Quoc. Also, most of these properties are located in the city center, he added.

s e r v i c e d + a p a r t m e n t s


Saigon Domaine Serviced Apartments Saigon Domaine Serviced Apartments: Binh Thanh District.
Saigon Domaine is just 10 minutes by speedboat (15-20 minutes by car) from the city center, and affords a beautiful riverine position. This development comprises 45 units ranging from a 72 square metre one-bedroom apartment to a huge 377 square metre, four-bedroom pad. Units come in a variety of layouts, but all of them are gifted with large sliding windows that open onto spacious terraces or loggias with breathtaking view over Saigon River and the south Vietnamese countryside.
Some of the facilities at Saigon Domaine include a fitness center and saunas, open air children's and adult's swimming pool (see the attached pic), children's playroom, Club Room for meetings and entertainment diversions, an inhouse catering service, attendant bars and a mini-shop, and a boat and bus service to the city center (the boat probably provides the more scenic view.) Car and boat rental (for folks who like nothing better than messing about in boats) and daily housekeeping services are also available.
Recreational possibilities for residents include water skiing and fishing, jogging and taekwondo, piano and dance classes, and aquatic gymnastics and aerobics and ping pong. It should be noted that Saigon Water Park is just minutes away!

Giac Duc: 492 Nguyen Dinh Chau, Dist. 3.

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