High Hanoi Opera House tour fees prove controversial

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Many visitors and tourism firms have complained about the VND400,000 (USD17.60) package to enter the Hanoi Opera House.

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About Hanoi Opera House

It was modeled on the Palais Garnier, the older of Paris’s two opera houses, and is considered to be one of the architectural landmarks of Hanoi. After the departure of the French the opera house became the scene for several political events as well as the scene of street fighting during the fight for Hanoi.

The Hanoi Opera House provides the names for the neighboring Hilton Hanoi Opera Hotel which opened in 1999, as well as for the MGallery Hotel de l’Opera Hanoi, which opened in 2011. For historical reasons associated with the Vietnam war, the Hilton Hanoi Opera Hotel was not named the Hanoi Hilton.

Hanoi Opera House via Hanoi Discovery

High fee for Hanoi Opera House Tours

Hanoi Opera House was opened to tourists from September 6. The visitors can tour the opera house, enjoy tea and an art performance for VND400,000. Students and people under preferential treatment policy have half price entry. 

Other options for those who only want to tour the opera house haven’t been implemented and the specifics of the tour haven’t been promoted to the public.

Many locals who were eager to tour the opera house on the first day were disappointed after realising that there was an entrance fee. Many were upset and said that the tour price was too high given local wages.

Representatives of several tourism firms also disagree with the fee. According to them, the initial fee should be around VND200,000 (USD10) and discount programmes were needed. 

Dang Bich Tho, deputy director of Hanoi Red Tour, said, “At first, the fee should be VND200,000. Then it can be raised after there are more investment and improvement.”

Vu Van Tuyen, director of Travellogy Vietnam agreed and said visitors only needed to pay VND300,000 for a day tour at Thai Grand Palace while Hanoi Opera House tour lasted for one to two hours.

Hanoi Opera House via Expedia

There are opinions that offered art performances that haven’t proved popular with the tastes of tour-goers and the Hanoi Opera Tour project may not succeed in its current form.

On the other hand, many people were fine with the fee. Nghiem Van Hung from Ha Dong District, said, “I’ve travelled past this opera house multiple times but this is the first time I set foot inside. VND400,000 to tour the opera house and watch an art performance is acceptable.”

Another visitor from Nam Tu Liem District was also happy that he could tour the opera house and impressed by the magnificent architecture.

The project is part of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism’s plan to introduce the opera house to tourists. Nguyen Thi Minh Nguyet, director of Hanoi Opera House, said the project was in trial process. 

Depending on the number of visitors this year, they might set up a long-term plan for those who only want to tour the opera house. During the first phase, their primary target will be local visitors.

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