Monday, December 12, 2005

Room With A View

Saigon River
The Saigon River
Originally uploaded by yellojkt.
Our ninth floor room at the Grand Hotel in Saigon had great views of both the Saigon River and the city. In the first picture, the turret from the older part of the Grand Hotel (seen from the street in this picture) shows a series of low rise buildings near the waterfront. Immediately to the left as seen in this picture is the Rennaissance Saigon. Just to the right is another older hotel and another new high rise.

In a few years, I have to imagine that these older buildings will be demolished to make way for a new high rise that will probably block this great view of the river traffic up and down the Saigon River.

Across Dong Khoi street from the hotel there is a large construction site that is being billed as a multi-use high rise that was just starting. The construction noises woke us up pretty early one morning.

The pace of construction is Saigon is amazing and I fear a lot of the old character will be lost. While we were there a large department store opened further up Dong Khoi. Modeled after Japanese department stores, each floor specialized in a different area like women's clothes, electronics, and housewares. The top floor had a very nice food court and a huge gaming arcade that had videogames and bowling.

The prices were very high. Men's dress shirts were designer names and easily cost US$60 or more. Within walking distance on Dong Khoi, you can find tailor shops that will custom make clothes at a fraction of the cost. Times change.

1 comment:

Dee Rimbaud said...

Traveller's Blogs Link Exchange

Hi

Next spring I'm going to be selling up and moving on to pastures new. The intention is to buy a big enough vehicle to be able to live in, and to travel south in the direction of Spain with my partner and child. We have no fixed plans, as such, and no idea where we are going to end up... it could be Granada, or it may even be Grenada, or we might not get any further than the Granada Services at junction 17 on the M6... or we might just keep travelling, like new age gypsies. Whatever happens, it's going to be an adventure.

With this in mind, I have just commenced a travel-blog, by the name of Aaron-Aardvark's Amazing Adventures. It's at http://aaron-aardvark.blogspot.com/ and is distinct from my other blog (which is really just a vehicle for spleen-venting and letting off steam).

The purpose of this new blog is to talk about my hopes, dreams and anxieties as we prepare for what will be a very big change indeed; and once we actually get off on the road, to paint a vivid picture of what life is like on the road.

One of the things I want to do with this blog is to encourage people to think outside the box, and to inspire people to pursue their dreams. I reckon if a 40-something couple with a 4 year old child can shake off the shackles of 9-5, mortgage payments and all the other bollocks that go with it, then pretty much anyone can.

With that purpose in mind, I intend to add a comprehensive section of links for people that might want to investigate further the possibilities of upping-stumps and leaving it all behind. So, if you know of any useful online resources, please send the URLs to me.

I'd also like to set up a links section to other traveller's blogs. If you'd be interested in exchanging links, please send me the URL of your blog and the title.

Well, wherever you are and whatever you're doing, I wish you a brilliant Christmas and an adventurous New Year.

All the very best

Dee Rimbaud