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Rapper Nicky Minaj wows millions with outfit made by Vietnamese designers


By Y Ly  &nbspOctober 11, 2018 | 09:48 am GMT+7

American rapper Nicky Minaj has wowed millions wearing a dress designed by Cory Tran and Phan Nguyen Minh Quan.

Minaj wore the outfit for a photo shoot for the front cover of Harper’s Bazaar Vietnam.

She posted different pictures of the photo shoot on her Instagram account. After four days, one picture from the collection received over two million likes on the social media site.

The dress is made of strong mesh fabric and embroidered with white stylized patterns.

It took Cory Tran, whose real name is Tran Quoc Dung, and Quan a week to design the dress after they were commissioned to do it.

Cory Tran has previously collaborated with several global stars including Toni Braxton and Kelly Rowland. Quan, 35, was a Top 3 finisher in Project Runway 2014.

Cory Tran (left) và Phan Nguyen Minh Quan

Cory Tran (left) và Phan Nguyen Minh Quan

Vietnamese designers have been making a mark on the international fashion scene of late. Last year, a photo of pop star Rihanna wearing a white shirt by designer Nguyen Cong Tri went viral on the Internet.





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Rapper Nicky Minaj wears a couture dress of two Vietnamese designers


By Y Ly  &nbspOctober 11, 2018 | 09:48 am GMT+7

American rapper Nicky Minaj wore a couture dress from Vietnamese designers Cory Tran (Tran Quoc Dung) and Phan Nguyen Minh Quan.

The global star wore the outfit for a photo shoot which appeared on the front cover of Harper’s Bazaar Vietnam magazine.

She also posted different pictures of the photo shoot on her Instagram account. After four days, one picture of that photo shoot received over two million likes on the social media site.

The dress is made of strong mesh fabric and embroidered with white stylized patterns.

The shoulder and chest was designed to enhance the star’s sex appeal, providing a strong and bold aesthetic that matched with the music icon.

After Cory was informed a few months ahead of the photo shoot, he and Quan quickly designed to complete the dress in one week.

Cory Tran, real name is Tran Quoc Dung, has collaborated with many global stars such as Toni Braxton and Kelly Rowland.

Phan Nguyen Minh Quan, 35, was in Top 3 of Project Runway 2014.

Cory Tran (left) và Phan Nguyen Minh Quan

Cory Tran (left) và Phan Nguyen Minh Quan

This is not the first time famous celebrities wear outfits from Vietnamese designers.

Last year, a photo of pop star Rihanna wearing white shirt from designer Nguyen Cong Tri went viral on the Internet.





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Saigon’s new mantra: eco-friendly living


Saigonese are increasingly opting for a sustainable lifestyle and happy to give environment-friendly things like reusable straws and
natural shampoos a try.

The problem of trash, especially plastic, and chemical wastes and their harmful effects on the environment are getting starker by the day as
waste dumps grow larger and more and more chemicals contaminate water bodies like rivers and oceans.

Most of these chemicals then find their way back into our food chain through seafood and into our drinking water sources.

Fortunately, the information age has flung back on our face what we are doing to our planet, and globally people are starting to live in a
more environment-friendly manner by replacing plastic and other non-biodegradable products with recyclable, reusable, organic, and natural
products.

“I switch to reusuable straws to minimise my plastic waste. I always put the set in my handbag. A lot of my friends do this as well,” said Thanh Than, a supporter of eco-friendly products in Saigon.

In Vietnam, especially in its southern metro, there are many new enlightened businesses that promote an environmentally-conscious lifestyle.
And, they are becoming more and more popular with individual customers as well as other businesses, especially in the hospitality
industry. 

Recyclable, Reusable, the new paradigm

“Our most popular products are the straws and veggie bags,” Michael Burdge, co-founder of Zero Waste Saigon, said.

Though only founded last January Zero Waste Saigon’s Facebook page already has more than 6,500 followers. Its online store offers many
recyclable and reusable products such as straws made from steel, bamboo, glass, and grass, grocery bags and canvas tote bags.

Bamboo straw – one of the most popular products at Zero Waste Saigon

When asked who his main customers are, Burdge says individuals and businesses make up half each. If eco-friendly products are made available,
many people, as is already evident in Saigon, are willing to use them, he added.

Businesses, especially restaurants and small businesses, realize that customers are paying attention to not just the quality of the food but
also the packaging, and are taking efforts to switch from single-use plastic products to recyclable and reusable products.

At least 50 businesses have bought Zero Waste Saigon’s products.

Plates, containers, cups ad bowls made from bamboo fiber and cassavan powder. Photo courtesy of The Organik House

The Organik House supplies biodegradable products to the hospitality industry including single-use containers, bowls, plates, and cups
made from bagasse or a mixture of bamboo fiber and cassava powder. It came into the market only at the beginning of this year, but already counts
among its customers many restaurants, hotels and resorts, not only in Saigon but also elsewhere, such as Fusion Saigon, Pullman Danang and some
others in Hue and Phan Thiet.

“Biodegradable products such as those made from bagasse are popular with businesses while reusable products such as metal and glass straws are
more popular with individual customers,” an Organik House employee said.

Reusable bamboo tablewares and wooden cutleries. Photo courtesy of The Organik House

Beyond food, into the bathroom

It is not just plastic that harms the environment; chemicals contained in things we use every day such as soap, dishwash liquids and
detergents enter and pollute our drinking water sources.

Su Meletzki, the owner of Green Around the Corner, a restaurant and store selling natural and eco-friendly and safe products, said she
started it to pay homage to Vietnam.

Coconut husk bags. Photo courtesy of Green Around the Corner

Here you can find a range of natural products such as herbal shampoos, detergents and dishwash liquids, coconut husk bags, hand-knotted
pouches made from jungle vine and more. Besides its own products, the store also sells natural, eco-friendly products made by others. 

“One of my achievements is to connect with local families and craftsmen I work with and help them spread their products and give them a way to
grow,” Meletzki said.

Among the things she sells are vegan and palm oil-free bar soaps from Saigon Suds, toy cars from Reborn.design which are upcycled from old
architectural objects found in Saigon and linen clothes from Linda Mai Phung.

Now, linen is one of the most sustainable fabrics since it is made from flax, which is hardy and can grow in poor soil with far less water
than cotton.

An upcycled toy car from Reborn.design. Photo by Su Meletzki

Story by Linh Nguyen





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Hanoi’s old quarter, now and then



Has it always been buzzing with frenetic activity? See for yourself.

4-hang-khayxdinh-tien-hoang-6339-1539146

The intersection of Hang Khay and Dinh Tien Hoang streets next to Sword Lake (Hoan Kiem Lake). The old photo was taken around the 1920s.

5-3550-1539146718.jpg

The Hanoi international post office located at the intersection of Dinh Tien Hoang and Dinh Le streets.

7-cau-go-4369-1539146718.jpg

Cau Go Alley off the street of the same name. Cau Go Street is a small one-way street in the old quarter. In the past this used to be a place for students to grab a meal. When the French were here, they changed its name to Rue du Pont en bois (Cau Go in French).

6-rap-cong-nhan-1259-1539148648.jpg

Trang Tien Street, where a movie theater called Cinéma Palace was built by the French in 1920. With classic French architecture, it was meant to be the most luxurious cinema in Indochina at that time. When the French took over Hanoi again in 1947 they changed the cinema’s name to Eden. In 1954 the name was changed again to Cong Nhan. Cong Nhan cinema remains in operation to this date.

9-hang-bacxhang-dao-1619-1539148649.jpg

The intersection of Hang Bac and Hang Dao streets. Hang Dao used to be called Rue de la Soie (Silk Street). Back then there was a tram line here. Hang Bac Street still sells silver and Hang Dao now sells clothes and fabric.

11-ma-may-4795-1539148649.jpg

The intersection of Ma May and Hang Bac streets. Ma May used to make and sell rattan goods, but now the street is filled with motels, home stays and diners. The old picture was taken in the 1910s.

14-bao-tang-lsvn-20-29s-8112-1539148650.

The Vietnam History Museum on Trang Tien Street. Built by the French in 1926 and opened in 1932, the museum displays antiques collected from other Southeast Asian countries.

1-hang-tre-1940-4918-1539148651.jpg

Hang Tre and Hang Thung streets, 1940 and 2018.

2-bach-hoa-tt-1972-4748-1539148652.jpg

Dinh Tien Hoang Street always seems to be crowded no matter what time it is. In the late 19th century the street was called Rue Du Lac, but after the capital was liberated in 1954 the name was changed to Dinh Tien Hoang. The photo on the left was taken in 1972.

3-1980-6649-1539148653.jpg

The tram station in Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square in 1980, which is now a bus stop. Its old name was Place Négrier.

8-8688-1539148654.jpg

Hang Bo Street in 1950, formerly named Rue des Paniers. This street used to sell bamboo goods, but not anymore.

10-dong-xuan-7565-1539148655.jpg

The intersection of Dong Xuan and Hang Ma streets in 1980. The name Dong Xuan only appeared after the August Revolution in 1945. Before that it was called Rueduriz by the French.

13-4477-1539148656.jpg

A bomb shelter (Tranchée in French) outside the Hanoi Sofitel Metropole Hotel on Le Phung Hieu Street. Between 1965 and 1972 almost all Hanoi streets had bomb shelters to enable people to get out of danger as quickly as possible. The photo on the left was taken in 1967.

12-ga-longbien-8783-1539148656.jpg

The way down from Long Bien bridge in 1940, now called Tran Nhat Duat Street. The photo on the left taken by Harrison Forman.

15-bo-ho-9286-1539148657.jpg

Sword Lake seen from Hang Khay Street. The old photo was taken in 1967.

Story by Kieu Duong






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Hanoi’s old quarter, now and then



Has it always been buzzing with frenetic activity? See for yourself.

4-hang-khayxdinh-tien-hoang-6339-1539146

The intersection of Hang Khay and Dinh Tien Hoang streets next to Sword Lake (Hoan Kiem Lake). The old photo was taken around the 1920s.

5-3550-1539146718.jpg

The Hanoi international post office located at the intersection of Dinh Tien Hoang and Dinh Le streets.

7-cau-go-4369-1539146718.jpg

Cau Go Alley off the street of the same name. Cau Go Street is a small one-way street in the old quarter. In the past this used to be a place for students to grab a meal. When the French were here, they changed its name to Rue du Pont en bois (Cau Go in French).

6-rap-cong-nhan-1259-1539148648.jpg

Trang Tien Street, where a movie theater called Cinéma Palace was built by the French in 1920. With classic French architecture, it was meant to be the most luxurious cinema in Indochina at that time. When the French took over Hanoi again in 1947 they changed the cinema’s name to Eden. In 1954 the name was changed again to Cong Nhan. Cong Nhan cinema remains in operation to this date.

9-hang-bacxhang-dao-1619-1539148649.jpg

The intersection of Hang Bac and Hang Dao streets. Hang Dao used to be called Rue de la Soie (Silk Street). Back then there was a tram line here. Hang Bac Street still sells silver and Hang Dao now sells clothes and fabric.

11-ma-may-4795-1539148649.jpg

The intersection of Ma May and Hang Bac streets. Ma May used to make and sell rattan goods, but now the street is filled with motels, home stays and diners. The old picture was taken in the 1910s.

14-bao-tang-lsvn-20-29s-8112-1539148650.

The Vietnam History Museum on Trang Tien Street. Built by the French in 1926 and opened in 1932, the museum displays antiques collected from other Southeast Asian countries.

1-hang-tre-1940-4918-1539148651.jpg

Hang Tre and Hang Thung streets, 1940 and 2018.

2-bach-hoa-tt-1972-4748-1539148652.jpg

Dinh Tien Hoang Street always seems to be crowded no matter what time it is. In the late 19th century the street was called Rue Du Lac, but after the capital was liberated in 1954 the name was changed to Dinh Tien Hoang. The photo on the left was taken in 1972.

3-1980-6649-1539148653.jpg

The tram station in Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square in 1980, which is now a bus stop. Its old name was Place Négrier.

8-8688-1539148654.jpg

Hang Bo Street in 1950, formerly named Rue des Paniers. This street used to sell bamboo goods, but not anymore.

10-dong-xuan-7565-1539148655.jpg

The intersection of Dong Xuan and Hang Ma streets in 1980. The name Dong Xuan only appeared after the August Revolution in 1945. Before that it was called Rueduriz by the French.

13-4477-1539148656.jpg

A bomb shelter (Tranchée in French) outside the Hanoi Sofitel Metropole Hotel on Le Phung Hieu Street. Between 1965 and 1972 almost all Hanoi streets had bomb shelters to enable people to get out of danger as quickly as possible. The photo on the left was taken in 1967.

12-ga-longbien-8783-1539148656.jpg

The way down from Long Bien bridge in 1940, now called Tran Nhat Duat Street. The photo on the left taken by Harrison Forman.

15-bo-ho-9286-1539148657.jpg

Sword Lake seen from Hang Khay Street. The old photo was taken in 1967.

Story by Kieu Duong






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A giant bread in Vietnam among world’s 15 weirdest foods


By Nguyen Quy  &nbspOctober 10, 2018 | 10:29 am GMT+7
A giant bread in Vietnam among world’s 15 weirdest foods

A meter long bread in An Giang has caught global attention as one of the world’s most bizarre foods.

Cyprus-based travel site Brightside recently released a list of 15 strangest foods in the world this year, and one of them was the meter-long, three kilo bread found only in the Mekong Delta province of An Giang.

Its giant dimensions have piqued the curiosity and interest of many visitors to An Giang, which is home to the Ba Chua Xu Lady Temple, one of the most famous spiritual sites in southern Vietnam.

Pictures and personal statuses of the 3-kg bread have gone went viral on social media, and it was among the most searched food item in recent times.

The Brightside list includes a chilled ramen served in a glass of beer in Canada, a fish sausage with cheese flavor in South Korea, a pizza with flowers and blueberries in Belgium and a mint chocolate cake in London

According to local bakers, the An Giang bread costs VND50,000 ($2.14) per loaf, and takes an hour to be roasted in the oven.

These giant loafs in Mekong Delta are the real super bread





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Visitors enjoy the breeze at Vietnam’s first and biggest wind farm


Visitors enjoy the breeze at Vietnams first and biggest wind farm

For many Vietnamese, the name “Bac Lieu” triggers memories of a dandy of the same name, an imaginary character created in the late 19th-early 20th century to parody rich kids in the Mekong Delta province. They also recall the iconic song, Da Co Hoai Lang, from Cai Luong musician Cao Van Lau who lived in Bac Lieu City. Now there is a new reason to think of Bac Lieu – the wind farm in Dong A Hamlet, Vinh Trach Dong Commune.

Visitors enjoy the breeze at Vietnams first and biggest wind farm - 1

This is the largest wind farm in Vietnam with 62 turbines. Each tower is 82 meters high and has blades 41.7 meters long. Work on the wind farm began in 2010, but only recently has it attracted people’s attention.

Visitors enjoy the breeze at Vietnams first and biggest wind farm - 3

The ideal time to visit the wind farm is early morning or afternoon to watch the sunrise and sunset. It is the only wind farm in Vietnam and the first one in Southeast Asia to be built on the continental shelf.

From Bac Lieu City, the capital city of Bac Lieu Province, take Cao Van Lau Road for about 20km to the sea, and you will reach Dong A Hamlet. From the city square or Bac Lieu’s 3 conical hats theater, visitors can see the giant blades on the skyline.

Visitors enjoy the breeze at Vietnams first and biggest wind farm - 4

This huge field of windmills is designed to exploit Bac Lieu’s wind potential and connect it to the national grid. The farm has 24-hour security.

Visitors enjoy the breeze at Vietnams first and biggest wind farm - 5

In the past, anyone wanting to visit the farm had to contact the site management in advance. Visitors coming from afar could manage to get in sometimes by seeking permission from the security personnel at the gate. But on discovering increasing interest in the farm, the investors have begun to sell tickets at VND20,000 ($0.86) per person.

Visitors enjoy the breeze at Vietnams first and biggest wind farm - 6

The investor was not open to the idea of having visitors, said Cao Xuan Thu Van, director of Bac Lieu’s Tourism Department. “It took us three years to convince the investor and make it a tourist destination,” she said. Her department plans to work with the investor to add several features to the farm to make it more tourist-friendly and attract even more visitors.





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Vietnam diva My Tam to perform live in South Korea


Vietnamese pop star My Tam will hold her first ever concert in Seoul, South Korea on October 20. Photo by VnExpress.

Vietnamese pop star My Tam will hold her first ever concert in Seoul, South Korea on October 20. Photo by VnExpress.

The concert, called “My Tam First Love”, will be held at the Jangchung Gymnasium in central Seoul.

It will be produced and directed by South Korean producer Cho Sung Jin, with whom My Tam has been working with since 2007. My Tam will perform her most famous songs as well as those from her latest album, Tam 9.

In September, Tam performed a Korean version of her hit song “Please Forget Me” at Seoul’s AMN Big Concert in September, which was well received by both Korean as well as Vietnamese audiences there. This prompted Tam to release the song as a single and hold a concert in South Korea.

The concert was initially supposed to take place on September 15, but My Tam wanted more time for her fans in Vietnam to get a visa to South Korea and attend her concert, so she pushed it to October 20.

Tam’s ninth and latest album, Tam 9, with Cho Sung Jin participating in its production, was released last December. It sold over 10,000 records in the first week and peaked at number 10 on the Billboard World Album chart, making her the first Vietnamese artist to gain that distinction.

My Tam is one of the most decorated artists in Vietnam, having won many international awards including Best Asian Artist at the 2012 Mnet Asian Music Awards, Best Southeast Asia Act at the 2013 MTV European Music and Asia’s Music Legend award at the Top Asia Corporate Ball 2014.

She was also the first and only Vietnamese pop singer to perform at the annual DMC Festival at Sangam, Seoul on September 9.





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Vietnamese diva My Tam to perform live in South Korea


Vietnamese pop star My Tam will hold her first ever concert in Seoul, South Korea on October 20. Photo by VnExpress.

Vietnamese pop star My Tam will hold her first ever concert in Seoul, South Korea on October 20. Photo by VnExpress.

The concert, called “My Tam First Love”, will be held at the Jangchung Gymnasium in central Seoul.

It will be produced and directed by South Korean producer Cho Sung Jin, with whom My Tam has been working with since 2007. My Tam will perform her most famous songs as well as those from her latest album, Tam 9.

In September, Tam performed a Korean version of her hit song “Please Forget Me” at Seoul’s AMN Big Concert in September, which was well received by both Korean as well as Vietnamese audiences there. This prompted Tam to release the song as a single and hold a concert in South Korea.

The concert was initially supposed to take place on September 15, but My Tam wanted more time for her fans in Vietnam to get a visa to South Korea and attend her concert, so she pushed it to October 20.

Tam’s ninth and latest album, Tam 9, with Cho Sung Jin participating in its production, was released last December. It sold over 10,000 records in the first week and peaked at number 10 on the Billboard World Album chart, making her the first Vietnamese artist to gain that distinction.

My Tam is one of the most decorated artists in Vietnam, having won many international awards including Best Asian Artist at the 2012 Mnet Asian Music Awards, Best Southeast Asia Act at the 2013 MTV European Music and Asia’s Music Legend award at the Top Asia Corporate Ball 2014.

She was also the first and only Vietnamese pop singer to perform at the annual DMC Festival at Sangam, Seoul on September 9.





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