Even though there are a large number of ex-pats who live, work and travel in Ho Chi Minh City, but it’s still quite difficult to find a good store to buy English books here. Many local stores have shut, and others are just trying to survive in the age of the Internet and online store. Here are 5 recommended English-language bookstores in HCM City for ex-pats.
The pleasure of a good bookstore lies not just in its books, but also in its opportunities to nose around. In this respect, Artbook (with branches around the country) is a marvel. The shelves are full of books on graphic design, interiors, architecture, cooking, photography… Artbook also goes beyond books to sell classic movie posters, notebooks, funny coasters and fridge magnets. Do not assume you will just be popping in for a quick visit, it will take you many hours to explore there!
Nhà sách Cá Chép (Carp bookstore)
This bookstore is modern and chic, and the owner puts the venue to good use with both side facet the main roads. Designed by Tran Dai Thang who is also a painter, the bookstore is based on the criteria that honour the value of the book through a beautiful display, especially convenient for users, but still exudes art in every corner of the entire bookstore. The result is a well-proportioned bookshop with exquisitely curated aisles and shelves on three floors, with a lovely cafe on the fourth. You can find every type of book here, from science to romance books. With affordable prices and wonderful space, ex-pats will love this bookstore a lot!
It’s just a shame if you put off by its seemingly small size. Tucked away in an old apartment, this shop is flooded with the kind of thoughtful silence you can almost smell. BOA Bookstore seems to be the best English-language bookstore in town, with a decent spread of fiction, non-fiction, dictionaries, children’s and reference books, as well as a few in French and other languages. The owner has built a loyal clientele from keeping a trendy and interesting range in stock and offering a personal order service. The shop is also used as a reading room, where the bookworms occupied for hours.
This is one of the newest independents opened in April 2016. Vesta is a beautifully modern bookshop with a small selection of carefully chosen titles, gifts, souvenirs, magazines and art supplies. Nice decoration, friendly staff with good books both in Vietnamese and English, this is a must-visit bookstore for you. If your kids love books or if you want to inspire a passion for art, there is another reason why you should go to this bookshop. Not only sells stuff, but Vesta Bookstore also has a courtyard, known as the event space, especially for art classes for both adults and children.
This place may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but Fahasa — a government-run bookstore chain — is the largest and most popular in Vietnam. This multi-storey building has its own dedicated floor stocking a broad selection of English books, from business and self-help to classic and modern novels. There are such a tremendous number of books in this place. It is a perfect spot to shelter from the heat while browsing and boasts an outstanding location on Nguyen Hue pedestrian street. Just come and explore the whole new world in this home of books, it will undoubtedly meet all your demands.
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