The Vietnamese government plans to develop the nigh economy in big cities as an initiative to develop tourism. How would you assess the potential of the night economy in Hanoi?
As an insider in the tourism industry for ten years, I think it is essential for the government to make plans for the development of night economy activities.
Tourists want to spend money and maximize their experiences when arriving in foreign land. It is the utmost task of the travel industry to cater to this demand.
Most of the world’s major tourist towns have very exciting nightlife activities. Naturally, night activities take place in Vietnamese tourist cities too, but discreetly.
In my opinion, night economy activities should not be restricted because it caters to the legitimate demand of tourists. Therefore, the night industry should be regulated in a clever manner and strongly promoted so it could become an advantage of tourist towns in Vietnam.
What should Hanoi do to develop the night economy? From your perspective as an F&B insider, what the industry could contribute to boost the night economy?
Night economy activities in famous tourist cities abound. It can be activities at bars, dance floors, food streets, music, spa services, beauty or health rehabilitation to serve visitors after a tiring day, among others. Even flights and bus trips are arranged to arrive in the city at late hours so as to motivate tourists to take a night walk, sightseeing and dine.
In the F&B industry, the demand for dining at night is huge. I opened a restaurant targeting tourists knowing that there are a lot of flights arriving at late hours, sometimes between 21:00 and 23:00 and visitors need to eat after arriving at their hotel.
Or when tourist trains from Sapa arrive in Hanoi in the early morning, we also opened early at around 4:30 to serve them breakfast. Several lists of night eateries spread out online show how big the market is.
Therefore, the night economy needs to be regulated cleverly so that business people can formally expand their businesses.
How streets in Hanoi should be reserved exclusively for the night economy?
I think the night economy in Hanoi is fragmented. So, the area for nightlife activities should be planned in terms of population density and distance, they should not be too close to residential quarters.
For example, the Old Quarter area, the area around Hoan Kiem Lake, some areas in My Dinh and Long Bien districts are places where tourists would spend the night entertaining. These places should be away from residential areas.
What experiences should Hanoi learn from China, Taiwan, Japan?
In tourist cities, I personally see them subdivided by:
Firstly, the model in concentrated areas such as China Town or India Town which are quite common. In Vietnam, streets where many South Korean or Japanese people are living are quite busy at night.
Secondly, regarding traditional areas, old quarters have historically been a gathering place, such as the Old Quarter in Hanoi or the Quarter of Foreigners in District 2 in Ho Chi Minh City.
Depending on the country’s culture, history and law, we can choose the direction of development that can stimulate the economic activities at night to create a good experience for domestic and international tourists as well as to boost economic development.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts!
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