Vung Tau is a popular beach resort city in Southern Vietnam. Its proximity to Ho Chi Minh City makes it a defacto beach suburb for the city.
In 2020 I did construction reports for the beach cities of Da Nang and Nha Trang, both of which rely heavily on international tourism. You could see first-hand how the pandemic has wreaked havoc on the tourism industry, with countless closed hotels in both cities.
In Vung Tau it’s a different story. Vung Tau is – for the most part – a domestic travel destination, and it’s mostly Saigonese that are visiting. And being a Saigon beach destination, it’s most popular on the weekend. I last visited Vung Tau during the week in 2019, and it was quiet with not many people on the beach.
I returned in March 2021 on a weekend, and this time the beach was packed.
This was a last-minute trip, and when I looked for hotels online there were very few options remaining. With Vung Tau not being dependent on international tourism, it’s business as usual.
I’ve previously compiled a list of construction projects at Future Vung Tau, and it has been updated again. This article is a snapshot of construction progress as of March 2021.
Vung Tau Map
Map of Vung Tau projects.
Location: 28 Thi Sach St, Thang Tam Ward, Vung Tau.
The Song is the tallest apartment complex under construction on the Back Beach, and the site was busy with activity during my visit.
The building has topped out at 33 floors.
Vung Tau Pearl
Location: Thi Sach St, Thang Tam Ward, Vung Tau.
Next door to The Song, the news is not as good for the Vung Tau Pearl.
After work had begun on the site, it appears to be completely abandoned.
Cap Saint Jacques Complex
Address: 169 Thuy Van, Vung Tau.
On the beachfront on the same street as Vung Tau Pearl and The Song is the Cap Saint Jacques Complex. The CSJ Tower was all but complete when I visited, and I was approached by a sales agent while I was taking photos. According to the website, phase 2 will include a second tower on the site of the current Cap Saint Jacques Hotel. So far, the old CSJ Hotel is still standing.
Address: 147 Thuy Van, Vung Tau.
Every seaside city in Southeast Asia worth its salt must have at least one almost-completed abandoned tower, and in Vung Tau it’s the Mepros Hotel.
This news article from 2014 shows the tower looking the same as it does now in 2021.
Nha Khach Vung Tau
Address: Thuy Van and Tran Quy Cap, Vung Tau
On the corner of Thuy Van and Tran Quy Cap is the project marked as “Nha Khach Vung Tau”. Nha Khach just means guest house, but this looks more extravagant than any guest house I’ve stayed at in Vietnam, so we’ll assume it’s a placeholder name.
The site hasn’t changed since my last visit in 2019, and I haven’t found any other information about it.
Hoang Hoa Tham and Thuy Van
Address: Corner of Hoang Hoa Tham and Thuy Van, Vung Tau.
The corner of Hoang Hoa Tham and Thuy Van must be one of the most prized blocks of seaside land in Vietnam. It reminds me of the large block of land in Da Nang at Vo Van Kiet and Vo Nguyen Giap. Old updates for this show various renders under the One Opera Complex name. None of the designs looks particularly inspiring, especially that this is the gateway road to the back beach. Hopefully whoever restarts this block comes up with something iconic.
BRG Front Beach Project
Address: Front Beach, Vung Tau.
BRG Group had planned to develop a hotel and apartment complex between the ferry terminal and Front Beach. The first phase was to include a Hilton property. In 2017 Hilton simultaneously announced the launch of DoubleTree by Hilton Vung Tau and Hilton Garden Inn Saigon. The announcement and reference to either property have since been removed from the Hilton website, so we can assume that the DoubleTree by Hilton has been abandoned. There have been no updates from BRG on what is happening for the rest of the site.
Son Thinh 3
Address: 408A Le Hong Phong, Thang Tam, Vung Tau.
Son Thinh 3 is an apartment building inland from the Pullman Hotel complex.
It’s almost finished, but the developer is embroiled in legal issues and construction has stalled.
When I visited the site there were protesters outside with signs and loudspeakers. It’s unusual to see any kind of protest in Vietnam. I found one article about the issue, though I couldn’t find any Vietnam English sites that reference it.
Address: So 79 đuong D5, phuong 10, Vung Tau.
The project was making progress, with two of the main buildings almost finished.
Location: 3 Thang 2, Phuong 10, Vung Tau.
Next to the Aquamarine project is The Maris Vung Tau. From the limited view I got from the beach, it appeared that most of the villa structures were complete but the rest of the project has stalled.
Vung Tau Gateway
Address: Corner Nguyen Huu Canh and Ba Thang Hai, Vung Tau.
Vung Tau Gateway is finished and people have moved in.
Most of the shophouses on the ground level looked empty.
Thuy Van and Le Van Tho
Address: Corner of Thuy Van and Le Van Tho, Vung Tau.
Unidentified beachfront block between the Imperial Hotel and White Rabbit Park.