Monday, December 29, 2014

Sunday, December 28, 2014

HCM City (4/5)

Good morning @Pasteur Street 

Independence Palace (Dinh Độc Lập)
Also known as Reunification Palace (Vietnamese: Dinh Thống Nhất), this special National Historical relic has 4 main floors, 2 mezzanines, ground floor and a basement.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

HCM City (3/5)

The Museum of Vietnamese History
Located next to the Saigon Zoo and Botanical Gardens, this charming museum had a simple and delightful courtyard in the entrance. We managed to catch a 20-minutes waterpuppet show in the museum (at only 50,000 VND)! 

Market Tour
Our guide Miss My showed us around Bến Thành Market before our cooking class.

Saigon Cooking Class by Hoa Tuc
My first cooking class since Secondary School...! Sauce and spring roll making was fun.

The Hidden Place
There were no signage to L'usine cafeteria at Dong Khoi. It was a great place to spend anytime of the day here. Items sold here were generally at the high pricing, and were mostly imported. The carrot cake was rather nice.

A O Show of the Evening
Live at Saigon Opera House, this imaginative 60-minutes choreography tells a story about how a rural Vietnamese community adapts to urbanisation, using items found in a typical village such as bamboo poles and woven baskets, with a seamless blend of traditional music, dance and acrobatics.
Saigon Opera House (built since 1897)
The building was very well-kept (washrooms come with a real pineapple scent tea light holder!) and I felt really honoured to be able to catch a show here.

Friday, December 26, 2014

HCM City (2/5)

What was interesting in District 1? Korean cafe TOURS Les JOURS was just around the corner of our hotel. Perfectly quiet place for delicious breakfast (with a light fusion of local items such as Bánh mì & Vietnamese coffee).

Another unexpected good place to hangout in the morning was Thư viện Khoa học Tổng hợp (The General Sciences Library) with plenty of big trees and public seats.

The bright mustard yellow Saigon General Post Office and vintage public buses made a Playmobil-like world. The beautiful and authentic European details around us (Saigon Opera HouseSaigon Notre-Dame Basilica) were all mesmerising too. 


Golden Dragon Water Puppet Show – Sold out for the day :-( (best to get your hotel to book for you in advance). So we sent window shopping instead :-) PARKSON! Proudly Malaysian (one of the best department stores in District 1).

Thursday, December 25, 2014

HCM City (1/5)

Perfect Flight Timings
11:15am from Changi Airport >> 12:45pm Tan Son Nhat Airport (1hr 45min via Jetstar Pacific)

Messy Taxis
Remember to only trust 2 taxi companies – Mai Linh & Vinasun. It only costs approx. 200,000 VND (less than 10USD) from airport to District 1. Anything more means you've gotten a dishonest cab driver!

Liberty Central Saigon Citypoint Hotel 
Amidst the crazy hustle and bustle, this 4-star hotel in District 1 was a wonderful retreat! Beautiful reception hall with great friendly staffs. 
Address: 59-61 Pasteur Street, District 1

Meals, Meals, Meals
Shrimp & pork rice rolls / Clams, peanuts & crispy noodles with rice noodles @Nam Giao
Barbecued eggplants, Coconut juice prawns @Temple Club

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Apple Wantan

2 small red apples; 1 teaspoon each of cinnamon powder, sugar, lemon juice; 1 table spoon of raisins; wantan skin, 1 egg (beaten); oil

1. Remove skin and core of apples. Cut into thin strips.
2. Mix cinnamon powder, sugar, lemon juice & raisins into the apple strips.
3. Wrap mixing into wanton skin. Seal each dumpling with egg.
4. Fry wantans with hot oil till golden brown. Serve hot.