Saigon weekend: what to do and where to go

By Phuc Trinh   June 28, 2023 | 11:16 pm PT
Food, art, and film lovers, rejoice! Experience a weekend of food expo, art talks, french Films, art exhibition, and a new brunch buffet menu in Saigon.

HCMC Foodex 2023

The Ho Chi Minh City International Exhibition of Food and Beverages 2023 (HCMC FOODEX 2023) kicked off on Wednesday. The exhibition is organized by the Ho Chi Minh City Investment and Trade Promotion Center (ITPC) in collaboration with the Consulate General of Italy in HCMC, as part of the activities to celebrate the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and Italy.

HCMC Foodex 2023 brings together over 200 local and international food industry enterprises. The event promotes reputable products, facilitates business partnerships, trade connections, and investment opportunities. With nearly 250 booths, the exhibition showcases a wide range of food and beverage products, offering visitors free samples, discounts, lucky draws, and cooking demonstrations. Italian businesses and products are a highlight of the event, offering a glimpse into Italy's natural and cultural heritage through its cuisine.

The event welcomes the public until Friday, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., at the Saigon Exhibition and Convention Center (SECC), at 799 Nguyen Van Linh Street, Tan Phu Ward, District 7. Business attire is required, and admission is restricted to individuals aged 12 and above.

Talk shows and workshops FUSE

FUSE is a series of events that mark 50 years of friendship between Vietnam and Canada. Visitors can participate in workshops, talks, dances, and concerts featuring artists from the two countries. Discover the fusion of music and dance through "Fuse of Creation," a fashion show with artist Denique and choreographer Nguyen Duy Thanh.

FUSE. Photo courtesy of Sun Life Viet Nam

FUSE poster. Photo courtesy of Sun Life Viet Nam

Visitors can also explore contemporary movements with "Fuse of Life" with performances by two circus artists Julien Desforges from Canada and Hien Phuoc from Vietnam, or experience the fusion of sensations and languages with Yama Laurent and Ngo Hong Quang through "Fuse of Language."

The events will take place from 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. on July 1 at The Ants Studio, No. 3, Dong Tay 1 Street, An Phu Ward, District 2. To attend, visitors must register through this link. The concert night will be live-streamed on Sun Life Vietnam's Facebook page.

French movie "Les Magnétiques" (Magnetic Beats)

French cinema rendez-vous is a weekly event introducing the richness and diversity of French cinema by screening a variety of very different films. Screenings are held by French Cinema Rendez-vous and Institut français de HCMV.

Les Magnétiques. Photo courtesy of French Cinema Rendez-vous

"Les Magnétiques" poster. Photo courtesy of French Cinema Rendez-vous

This week's movie is "Les Magnétiques," a coming-of-age film that explores the lives and dreams of a group of friends who create a free radio station in rural France. The film is set in the region of Brittany, where music, culture, and politics collide. It follows Jerome and his younger brother Philippe, as they face challenges and changes in their personal and professional lives. They have no idea that their lives will soon change, as Philippe has no choice but to leave for West Berlin as he is called for military service.

The screening will take place on July 1, 2023 at 7p.m. at DCiné Cinema, No.6 Mac Dinh Chi, District 1. The price of a ticket is VND60,000 ($2.55) per person.

Exhibition "From plein air to atelier"

The exhibition will open on July 1, featuring the artworks of two Vietnamese artists who were inspired by Italy's natural and cultural landscapes. The exhibition is organized by Patron Art Space in collaboration with the Consulate General of Italy in HCMC.

The artists, Bui Duy Khanh and Duong Thuy, who spent several months in Italy, used plein air techniques, which involve painting outdoors, to capture the essence of Italy's light, color, and atmosphere. They also added their own Vietnamese touch to their paintings, creating a fusion of styles and perspectives.

The exhibition will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., from July 1 until 9 at LAGarden Restaurant – Lan Anh Village, at No.2 Street 45, Thu Thiem Ward, District 2.

Sunday brunch buffet

Le Méridien Saigon has launched a new Sunday brunch buffet menu at the Latest Recipe Restaurant. The buffet features a wide range of delicacies, such as foie gras, lobster, French bulot, fresh seafood, and imported meats, as well as desserts, cheeses, salads, and more. Visitors can also enjoy free-flowing drinks, including sparkling wine, beer, juices, and soft drinks.

The new Sunday brunch buffet menu features a wide range of fresh seafood. Photo courtesy of Latest Recipe Restaurant

The new Sunday brunch buffet menu at Le Méridien Saigon features a wide range of seafood. Photo courtesy of Latest Recipe Restaurant

Latest Recipe Restaurant is a contemporary dining venue that offers global cuisines with a local twist. The restaurant has an open kitchen and a stylish décor, creating a welcoming atmosphere.

The buffet is available every Sunday from noon to 3 p.m. at the restaurant, situated on the M Floor of Le Méridien Saigon at 3C Ton Duc Thang Street, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1. The buffet menu starts from VND1,590,000 ($67.53) per guest. Discounts are available for Club Marriott and Marriott Bonvoy members.

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