Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat
Global Walking Tour: Ho Chi Minh City
2 August 2018
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A group photo kicked off the 2018 Ho Chi Minh City Global Walking Tour. All photos: © Nhung Le - Archetype Group

HO CHI MINH CITY – The Ho Chi Minh City 2018 Global Walking Tour was organized and led by Archetype Group, Vietnam. The Ho Chi Minh City tour fully embraced the theme of “Walking on Water,” as it involved a boat tour. The meeting point was at REE Tower on the 20th floor, where participants could see most of HCMC’s waterfront development that they would later visit. There was a small coffee break, followed by an introduction of the tour and CTBUH by David Martin, Archetype Group’s Business Development Director. The tour’s guest speakers from Bachy Soletanche Vietnam presented the participants with their expert insights on foundations for high-rise buildings in waterfront soil conditions. It was a short, but necessary introduction to the walking tour.

After the intro, the group proceed to Cau Mong Harbour, located on the riverside of Ben Van Don Street, where the tour boat was ready to take them around Ho Chi Minh City’s remarkable waterfront developments. On the boat, the participants were each handed a pamphlet with a short summary of the high-rise developments that they would be passing.

Ho Chi Minh City's tour embraced the 2018 theme, "Walking on Water," with attendees enjoying a boat tour

Beside available information on the pamphlet, the tour participants also learned about other interesting facts on piling and foundations of these projects from David Martin, Minh Nguyen, Archetype Vietnam C&S Engineering Director, and Bachy Soletanche’s engineers. The first two buildings were Lancaster Lincoln and Saigon Royal Residence, both under construction. The next notable building was Saigon One Tower, which has a long and bumpy history of development, and is soon expected to resume construction after a financing delay.

The boat then took the tour to past the designated location for the Hotel Majestic Expansion, a hospitality development by Saigon Tourist Holding. After this, participants could see Ascott Waterfront Saigon, belonging to M.I.K. Corporation and The Ascott Limited.

The tour also noted the Saigon Me Linh Towers as part of the near future developments in the HCMC waterfront area. The project has two towers: the first has 50 stories, comprised of apartments and office-tels. The second is a 38-story tower that is intended to house an international 5-star hotel. A 10-story podium will connect the two towers, with retail, office, and car parking facilities and four basements underneath. With one of Vietnam’s largest development companies, Novaland, leading the project on land owned by SABECO (Saigon Beer Company), the Towers will be in a highly desirable location in Ho Chi Minh City’s business district.

Attendees were treated to views of a number of HCMC waterfront developments: Saigon One Tower (top left); Ascott Waterfront Saigon (top right); the Saigon Me Linh Towers development site (rendering bottom left); Saigon Pearl Development (bottom right)

A little further along the riverside from Ascott Waterfront, the participants began to see the Saigon Pearl Development, which is one of Ho Chi Minh City’s more notable high-rise residential complexes. From an architectural concept by Ronald Lu & Partners, Archetype Group was awarded the architectural and structural preliminary and detail design contract for phase 2, including four of the planned six apartment towers. The project under Archetype’s scope comprises 1,184 apartments in four 37-story towers, including a two-story retail podium, as well as an underground car park. In extremely soft soil conditions, Archetype and Bachy Soletanche were able to provide state-of-the-art and cost-effective bored piling and superstructure design, managing to comply with both local and British Standard requirements, including increased anti-seismic requirements.

On the other side of the river, the group could see Thao Dien Pearl, a mixed-use high-rise development for which Archetype Group provided architecture service, in partnership with with SSG Architecture.

The last development for the boat tour was Landmark 81, the tallest building in Vietnam, with an impressive height of 461.2 meters. Its retail mall has already opened to the public. The Vingroup development is situated in a high-end urban complex of Vinhomes Central Park.

Towering over the Saigon Pearl Development, Landmark 81 is now the tallest building in Vietnam.

The participants disembarked at Tan Cang Harbour. The tour then took a route on Mai Chi Tho Street to Thu Thiem New City Development in District 2, which is an iconic urban complex developed by Thuan Viet Trading and Construction Company. The group was greeted by Thanh Nguyen, who first introduced the blocks and features of the complex through a miniature 3D model, and later guided the group to the main building’s 19th floor, where the variety of sample apartments in the complex were shown and explained.

After visiting New City, the group moved to the Liberty Riverside Restaurant, where they had the opportunity to recap the tour and discuss the increasing importance of high-rise development in HCMC’s current land condition, speculating on how valuable waterfront high-rise development could become in the near future.

Participants were introduced to the features of the Thu Thiem New City Development Complex

David Martin Ruiz Archetype Group
Do Luu Phuong Trang Archetype Group
Nguyen Hong Minh Archetype Group
Tran Van Nhuong Archetype Group
Tran Ngoc Phuong Archetype Group
Marine Ros Archetype Group
Truong Thi Quynh Hoa Archetype Group
Nhung Le Archetype Group
Thuy Be Archetype Group
Pham Hoang Nhan Bachy Soletanche
Mai Quoc Quan Bachy Soletanche
Pham Quoc Dung Bachy Soletanche
Luu Nguyen Vu Bachy Soletanche
Ong Kim Minh Hoa Binh Corporation
Tran Viet Thai Hoa Binh Corporation
Phillippe Roussel Immochan
Nguyen Quoc Huy Novaland
Nguyen Thanh Loan Novaland
Tran Quoc Phong Novaland
Truong Tan Loc NS Bluescope Lysaght Vietnam
Trinh Anh Duc NS Bluescope Vietnam
Le Anh Thu Shimizu Corporation
Dang Ngoc Canh Thornton Tomasetti
Vo Huu Thinh Thornton Tomasetti
Phan Ngoc Thanh Huyen Thornton Tomasetti