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“lot of varieties”
Review of Saigon Square - CLOSED

Saigon Square
Attraction details
Philippines
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“lot of varieties”
Reviewed August 29, 2012

Buying copies of North Face products and other stuff, this is a great place. We met a very warm and kind shop owners too. They attended to us even if most of the shops are already closing.
Yeah, they close a bit early (8 PM is too early for mall rats like us), we were not able to look at the other shops.

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Rian S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

477 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Indonesian first
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English first
Pasig, Rizal, Philippines
Level 4 Contributor
30 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“Saigon is so square”
Reviewed August 13, 2012

Again, same flea market environs anywhere in asia.
Wasn't too interesting. Didn't really see anything worth buying or anything quite different from the other cities in Asia. There are two Saigon Squares i was told. I hope i went to the original one.

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank FunFlop T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tokyo, Japan
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Saigon Square Prices On The Rise”
Reviewed August 4, 2012

I have been visiting Saigon Square for many years and have usually found it to be a cheap place to shop with reasonable quality. Since the recent expansion of the shopping mall and the economic growth of Vietnam it has become harder to find genuine bargains. The sales staff begin negotiations with exorbitant prices and are very reluctant to drop them. Overall I left feeling rather disappointed on this occasion with money still in my pocket. Perhaps Vietnam's halcyon days of shopping till you dropped are a thing of the past.

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank EndlessDiscovery
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adelaide
Level 6 Contributor
115 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 101 helpful votes
“In search of the Saigon Fur”
Reviewed July 14, 2012

In search of the Saigon Fur
Why am I awake so early? We had a long day of traveling yesterday, we were really zonked out by the time our heads hit the pillow, it’s now five am, and I am awake, rearing to go.
How come wife is still sending up a constant flow of ZZZZZZZZZZ’s sleeping her ears off?
Perhaps I am a little bit excited to be here, and maybe my body clock is still working on Oz. Time. (Three hours ahead of VN time.)
I dress, tiptoe down the stairs, camera swinging from my neck, fully expecting to be greeted by the hotel staff when I reach the foyer.
Guess what greeting I receive? No cheery smile? Not even a frown. What I do get is a duet of ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ’s from a couple of lifeless forms snuggled on the foyer lounges, which I found to be our receptionist and kitchen staff.
Many of the workers in the Vietnamese hospitality industry come from poorer villages outside Saigon, they draw a small pay, have accommodation and food thrown in, and are at call pretty much 24/7. Somewhere through that timeline, they do have time off.
Also sharing the staff sleeping quarters are three motor scooters. Where else can you keep them overnight? There is no carport, garage, or undercover parking station, the Honda, or Honda look alike, is a valued possession, so bring it inside for the night where it will be safe.
(Unlike five or six that one night, were compressed, between a taxi and a tree on the doorstep of our Hanoi Hotel, but that’s another tangled, mangled tale.)
Eventually I was out on the street witnessing the waking time of the locals.
Many of the shops still had their rollers down, or just retrieving their scooters from amongst their wares inside.
The heady aromas of Asian cooking from the myriad of curb side restaurants filled the air. Smelt enticing, but………..
I use the word restaurant with tongue in the cheek, for the restaurants I saw had sprung up from nowhere, and were usually nothing more than a cluster of kiddies size plastic tables and chairs, somewhere nearby, either with the diners, or across the road up a side alleyway a pan or two, or three, steaming and bubbling, cooking the food for the dining customers. “No place for the western fur hunter to dine,” I observed.
These portable restaurants would disappear later in the morning, then just as quickly, re-emerge later in the day to lure evening diners to sample their wares once more.
The curb side eateries it seemed, was a great place to meet friends over a meal, and as one local pointed out, was the cheapest way of eating.
For a family to prepare a variety of meals, they would have to have on hand many ingredients that would exceed the family budget.
The food on the street was a far cheaper option of feeding the family, and you didn’t have to shop, or store the food either.
As I wandered down Bui Vien Street, I saw an odd combination of street vendors sharing a small area devoid of scooters. One was the local banana vendor, and the other squatted on another of those kiddy’s plastic stools, tending to an air compressor.
Having just weathered a time of over inflated banana prices, I wondered if this was to happen again here in Saigon. But no, a bit later that day, I saw the compressor man hard at work, stripping the rear wheel of a scooter to repair a puncture, right there on the roadside.
Bui Vien was now starting to hum with life. The scooters were out in force, ladies in the conical hats, sold a myriad of things from the pans that hung from the bamboo poles across their shoulders. Tomatoes, carrots, chewing gum, dried ginger, fish, postcards? “Sorry I already have some,” Postcards? Postcards? NO! di di mau! (Vietnamese for buzz off quickly)
I shouldn’t get so uptight with the persistence of the street vendors; there is no unemployment benefit here, so the people make the most of whatever means they can to earn the most meagre living we could never begin to imagine.
Before defiantly crossing the street, I stopped for just one more photo, a little altar set up midst the base of a large stobie pole. I never worked out why that altar with incense sticks smoking away was there on it’s own, must be there to bless Mr. Stobie I reckon.
I had to out run the mobile, talking “tell your weight man,” (mobile talking scales) before ducking down our lane to the Luan Vu, just in time for breakfast of Baguettes, omelettes, fruit juice, and coffee, with the girls, before we head on out to see Hoa Stone. (http://www.houseofgrace.com.au/fundraising_story.html)
We have 100+ articles of children’s clothing we’ve lugged from Adelaide for Hoa to give to the needy children, and then after lunch, we go on to visit Christine Noble’s well established children’s home in Saigon. http://www.cncf.org/.
Both web sites are worth a visit, Hoa is currently building a facility to aid disadvantaged children, and Christine’s, (Mamma Tina) well established similar facility.
So far I have probably given you the impression that Saigon is all narrow streets and vendors. Please excuse me for that, but the change of culture has always been a great interest to me.
Saigon has a lot of very beautiful buildings, parks and streets. I do know of one hotel much more up market than where we are staying, the famed Rex Hotel an imposing building on Nguyen Hue Street.
Nguyen Hue street is wide tree lined, and has a large median strip running down the center. The median strip is more like a botanic garden, well-manicured lawns stretch from one end of the street to the other, the flowering trees and shrubs add so many colours
Eventually we returned to Bui Vien, and our favourite restaurant, before a little night time street exploration, and a beer. Still the fur evades me. BB

Visited August 2011
Helpful?
Thank pbroboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manila
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“A haven for shopaholics”
Reviewed July 11, 2012

My wife who's been to Saigon several times already brought me to this place which is within walking distance to the more popular and "touristy" Bhen Thann Market in District 1. The place is full packed with clothes, bags, and some stalls of electronic items & accessories. Like most shops in Saigon the vendors also accept US$ as payments for the goods you would want to purchase. Haggling and bargaining is allowed! We bought several North Face bags which were 99.9% much like the original at about 1/3 of its price back home! Lady vendors have this tendency to grab you by the arm just to get you to buy. Some find this quite unsettling but I find it sweet - haha!

Visited June 2012
Helpful?
4 Thank kidlat11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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