© The Dreamers

Must-Buy Shopping List for Hanoi Travelers
We are introducing a list of extraordinary shopping venues that will double the fun for travelers in Hanoi. Vietnamese chocolate made from cacao grown and processed locally, handicraft made by minority groups with great care, and snacks to remember Hanoi by can all be found in the places featured below.
The Vietnamese capital of Hanoi, imbued with history and tradition, is a tourist destination that has long been admired by travelers from around the world. A vacation in Hanoi means you get to stroll around in the Old Quarter where streets are intertwined like a spider web, enjoy a bowl of Vietnamese rice noodles, sip coconut coffee at a cafe, and relax with a massage at a cozy spa. The city fulfills the to-do list anybody would have for their dream vacation if they want to escape from the exhaustion of daily living. Last but not least, there is shopping that thrills tourists just as much as a good sightseeing or dining experience.

The Dreamers © Jeon Hae-in

Tradition Meets Modern, The Dreamers
Located in the West Lake area known for its quiet, European atmosphere, the Dreamers is a select shop of various goods and furniture. In the spacious, two-story shop, items capable of grabbing the attention of visitors at once are on display. From decorative items featuring traditional patterns, wooden cutting boards and utensils to kitchenware of traditional Vietnamese colors and garments, the range of items sold at the Dreamers run the whole spectrum.
Pursuing the aesthetics of slowness, the select shop only carries handicrafts made with local materials using traditional Vietnamese techniques. The design and production of their merchandise take place exclusively in Vietnam. The Dreamers presents a great opportunity for visitors to see a wide range of high-quality products with local traits in one place. If you are interested in kitchenware or interior design, you should definitely consider visiting the shop. The sophisticated layout with hints of modern touch to the traditional setting is a good barometer of the sense of taste the managing crew has.
Address 1 Au Co, Tay Ho District, Hanoi
Phone +84-91-240-04-39

Maison Marou Hanoi © Jeon Hae-in

Proudly Presenting Vietnamese Chocolate, Maison Marou
The term “single origin” is most commonly used in coffee industry. Single-origin coffee such as Ethiopia’s Yirgacheffe and Kenya AA means that coffee beans have been harvested in one location without mixing beans from other areas. It is in high demand by coffee aficionados for its characteristics unique to its origin. Amazingly, there is a chocolatier in Vietnam that is challenging single-origin coffee. It’s Maison Marou, a pioneer maker of single-origin chocolate using Vietnamese cacao beans.
All chocolate of Maison Marou relies on cacao directly purchased from local farmers through fair trade. The brand supports the “bean-to-bar” manifesto, literally meaning every step, from the cultivation of cacao beans to the rolling-out of chocolate bars, takes place in Vietnam. Started by a French expat named Vincent Mourou in Ho Chi Minh City, the brand opened a shop in Hanoi in 2017, and is currently globalizing its chocolate as one of the signature products of Vietnam.
Maison Marou’s chocolate, created with pride and belief that the best chocolate can be made using only good ingredients and a couple of tools such as a blender and a mold, is a must-buy in Hanoi. It not only adds sweetness to the trip, but also functions as a great souvenir to give to friends and family thanks to its sophisticated packaging. You can buy and sample the chocolate at the Maison Marou cafe in Hanoi, located south of Hoan Kiem Lake.
Address 91A Tho Nhuom, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
Phone +84-24-3717-3969

Le Chalet Café © Jeon Hae-in

Handicrafts by Underdogs, Le Chalet Café
Vietnam is a multiethnic country with 54 ethnic groups. The Viet makes up over 85 percent of the whole population, while other minorities share the remaining 15 percent or so. Smaller groups still have their own lifestyles, languages, and cultures. Le Chalet Café is a gift shop and self-proclaimed platform connecting ethnic minorities and the city, each representing producers and consumers.
Under the banner of sustainable, eco-friendly development, Le Chalet Café sells products made by minority groups in Vietnam. Handmade through weaving, natural-dyeing, sewing, or tying, each merchandise carries the unique color of the maker group. As part of a project supporting education and financial growth of underdeveloped regions in Vietnam, the cafe donates a portion of its profit to ethnic groups. It offers an invaluable chance for consumers to get a glimpse of the region’s indigenous culture and at the same time make social contributions. In addition, Le Chalet Café makes alternative products to reduce damage to the environment, such as bamboo straws and toothbrushes.
Address 57 Xuan Dieu, Tay Ho District, Hanoi
Phone +84-96-475-32-25

Rattan baskets © Jeon Hae-in

Rattan shop on Hanoi street © Jeon Hae-in

Rattan goods with many different patterns © Shutterstock

Rattan From Tropics, Tien Dat Handicraft & July Shop
Since several years ago, Rattan products have been gaining popularity worldwide. Rattan is a type of Old World climbing palms that can be turned into furniture, baskets, or bags by hand through processing its canes. Being an eco-friendly material for handmade items, Rattan has been highlighted amid expanding dialogues over naturalistic philosophy and sustainable development. Rattan products are steady-sellers frequently appearing on the shopping list of those who are traveling to Southeast Asia. Hanoi also has high-quality Rattan products with reasonable price tags. Check out the streets occupied by traditional stores in the Old Quarter. You’ll be able to find Rattan coasters for 1,000-2,000 Korean won, and baskets or bags for 10,000-20,000 won. Tien Dat Handicraft specializing in Rattan is a shop worth visiting.

Fruit smoothie inside coconut bowl © Shutterstock

Colorful coconut bowls in Hanoi © Jeon Hae-in

More recently, coconut bowls are popular and trendy. The fruit of coconut is repurposed into a container after it is cut in half and dried completely. Smoothie bowls, an SNS hit for their colorful plating variations, can be placed inside coconut bowls, which is what initiated their popularity on the internet. Hanoi offers cheap coconut bowls because of its geographical location in Southeast Asia with the climate suited for coconut farming. Craft items that feature coconut bowls decked with seashells or egg shells on the inside are in demand as well. Prices range between 1,000-5,000 won depending on the type of merchandise and design, and can be found easily in the Old Quarter along with Rattan products. If you want to check out coconut bowls on sale, July Shop is a good start.
Address 94 Hang Gai, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi(Tien Dat Handicraft), 21 Ly Quoc Su, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi(July Shop)

Hanoi shop with cashew nuts © Jeon Hae-in

Treasure Trove of Souvenirs, Local Marts
There is a place you must visit before the trip ends. The grand finale of any trip in fact is a local mart. Hanoi marts are famous for their selection of nuts and dried tropical fruits. Various nuts including macadamias, cashews, and pistachios, fill an entire section of a mart. They can be purchased at relatively low prices. We recommend you try unpeeled macadamia nuts that are fun to shell if you know how to maneuver a small nutcracker.
Salted cashews and pistachios are never disappointing. They make great beer nuts. Also recommended snacks are processed fruit chips of tropical origin. For those with an adventurous spirit, we suggest chips made of jackfruit that looks a lot like durian. It surprisingly has a fan base due to its unique yet addictive flavor. All of these snacks will be something to remember the time in Hanoi by, later on. Memories from the trip will be brought back to life by simply popping the snacks into your mouth.
Address B1 Lotte Center Hanoi, 54 Lieu Giai, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi(LOTTE Mart Hanoi)
Phone +84-24-3724-7501

Where to Stay in Hanoi: LOTTE HOTEL HANOI
Occupying the upper floors of LOTTE CENTER HANOI, LOTTE HOTEL HANOI boasts a spectacular prospect overlooking the entire city. Presenting guest rooms that adopted traditional Vietnamese motifs for the interiors, the hotel is a popular choice among tourists as an urban oasis where you can enjoy the city’s skyline view from a rooftop bar called Top of Hanoi and relax your body and soul in a nature-like setting at evian®SPA.
Address 54 Lieu Giai, Ba Dinh, Hanoi
Phone +84-24-3333-1000         
February 2020 Editor:Kim Hyewon
Writer:Jeon Haein

Where to stay?

  • February 2020
  • Editor: Kim Hyewon
    Writer: Jeon Haein
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