The rental price of 2,000 USD, lowered to 8 million, is still empty

Minh Hang (39 years old) is renting a bed in the form of a dorm room (dormitory – dormitory room or dormitory-style bunk room) on Bui Vien Street (District 1, HCMC). According to her, with the rent of 2.2 million VND/month including electricity and water costs, this is quite cheap right in the city center, convenient for commuting.

Especially, the above dorm room is improved from a hotel room located in the West Street area – Bui Vien. Due to the prolonged absence of foreign guests during the outbreak of the COVID-19 epidemic, it was extremely difficult, from a professional hotel, this place turned into a dormitory for students and office workers.

The sad story of the West townhouse: The rent of 2,000 USD, lowered to 8 million, is still empty - 1

Dormitory room in a hotel on West Bui Vien Street (photo: Tran Chung)

Hotel turned into a dormitory

Ms. Cao Phi Yen – owner of Bui Vien Street Hostel – said that the business in the form of bunk beds is cheap to maintain operations. The number of monthly guests will help “feed” the hotel and make up for the lack of international guests. In addition, Western tourists “backpackers” also like this type of bunk bed because of its cost savings. The price of bed per day is 5-6 USD/day (equivalent to more than 120,000 VND), the hotel currently has 50 beds.

Not only Yen, many hotel owners in Bui Vien area said that the number of foreign guests renting rooms is only 30-40% compared to before the epidemic. Accommodation establishments are taking all measures to cut costs, lowering room rates to the lowest possible level to attract guests.

Mr. Nguyen Gia Hao, representative of New York Thien Phuc hotel, said that this hotel adjusted the room rent from 1-3 million VND/night to 600,000-800.000 VND/night, but the number of guests has just reached about 70 %. Currently, guests from Russia, the US and Taiwan come to stay mainly.

After the epidemic, tourists calculate, save in spending and learn the destination more carefully than before. Therefore, hotels that want to compete are forced to reduce room rates.

The alley of a hotel that specializes in serving Western guests used to be impossible to drive in every weekend, so full of people.completely absent”I said.

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A facade at the beginning of Bui Vien Street hangs a sign for a long time but no tenants (photo: Tran Chung)

The rental price decreased from 45 million to 8 million but the shop is still closed

Meanwhile, about 8 minutes by motorbike from Bui Vien pedestrian street, the alley leading to the Japanese quarter on Thai Van Lung Street (District 1), 4 adjacent restaurants are all sticking signs for shop rental. The old business owner could not stand it after the pandemic, forced to return the premises.

Vo Thi Be Quynh – Torisho’s manager – compares the time it opened 5 years ago and the “gloomy” scene now, the number of customers is only 40%. At that time, guests were busy eating and drinking, often full and had to book before the weekend. On the contrary, now there are about 50 guests/day, many days there are no customers to eat.

Ms. Nguyen Cam Tu, manager of the Fujiro restaurant, informed that foreign guests coming to eat here are only 1/3 of what they were before the epidemic. Another branch of the restaurant is located in district 7, diners are even lower. For example, before, on Saturday or Sunday serving from 250-300 guests/day, now there are more than 100 guests, weekdays about 80 guests/day.

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Restaurants on Japanese street pay ground due to loss of business (photo: Tran Chung)

According to Ms. Tu, the restaurants in the neighborhood mainly serve Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese customers who are living and working in Vietnam, while new tourists are almost absent.

While the diners were absent, the cost of input materials such as vegetables and meat had increased by about 15%, the restaurant could not adjust the price because it kept customers.

Business was sluggish, so many Japanese restaurants accepted to close because they couldn’t stand it, and the owner made a loss. Some landlords have reduced the rent from 2,200 USD/month (about 45 million) to 8 million/month, but the business owner has no money to pay, owes a few months, and finally closed.

“Many premises have been rented with signs for a long time, but no one has come to ask”Fujiro manager shared.

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Foreign visitors coming and using tourism-based services have not been as expected (photo: Tran Chung)

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