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VietNamNews

Old bus becomes a bustling cafe

Update: December, 08/2019 - 10:36

 

 

DRINKERS ON THE BUS GO ROUND AND ROUND: Customers enjoy drinks in the cafe. Photo vietnammoi.vn

 

One way to break the mould is an eye-catching design, and what's more eye-catching than a big yellow bus?

 

That must have been what Nguyễn Đứa Sâm and his friends thought when they opened Hanoi Bus Cafe.

Located on the grounds in front of a future Hà Đông metro station on Tô Hiệu Road, the cafe is inside a stationary bus which has been redesigned.

Sâm said he came up with the idea for the cafe during a trip to Vĩnh Phúc Province north of the capital when he saw many damaged buses that had been abandoned and were going to waste.

“A sudden idea came to my mind, why don't we use such a bus to open a coffee shop? My friends agreed and we bought a bus, but at first we faced many difficulties on how to turn it into a cafe as we didn't have any model to follow,” Sâm said.

He said his group repaired the bus with old parts such as tyres, and even today they try to improve the bus using recycled materials.

The group stripped the interior of the bus to repaint it, made the driver's area a kitchen and used old tyres as tables, chairs and pots for plants.

“One of my group members cut plastic bottles to become a flower pot to be used again and again,” said Sâm.

“It is a practical action to protect the environment and to respond to world organisations’ call to reduce plastic bags and other items that cause harm to the environment and our lives,” he said.

The bus cafe is also outfitted with a small library, as well as two guitars and an organ for music lovers.

Housewife Trần Thị Băng often brings her two children to the bus so she can show them how discarded products can be recycled.

As well as standard coffee, the cafe also serves coconut coffee and various kinds of fruit juices at prices ranging from VNĐ25,000-45,000.

“My children are interested in reading books and playing hide and seek around the bus.

"They also like the rocking chair made from a used tyre.

"The environment around the bus this autumn is very good and fresh for them to relax after hard learning in school," Băng said, adding that space around the bus would be great for snapping a photo. 

Student Hoàng Trọng Minh from the National Economics University said the model was unique in Việt Nam.

Minh and his friends often come here to enjoy coffee, read books or play music.

The customer experience is crucial for Sâm, so he said he was careful to choose safe ingredients and offered a money back guarantee.

"If a customer leaves his/her drink and food, I will ask them why. If it's because of the taste, the customer will not have to pay anything and if they say it's because they're in a hurry, I will ask my employee to wrap up their order to take it away,” he said.

As a result, Hanoi Bus Cafe has seen increasing numbers of customers, from all walks of life.

This success has led to overcrowding during weekends and holidays, so Sâm said he hoped to open another bus cafe before long.

You know what they say, you wait for one bus cafe and then two show up at once. VNS 

GLOSSARY

One way to break the mould is an eye-catching design, and what's more eye-catching than a big yellow bus?

To break the mould means to do things differently to the way most people do them.

Located on the grounds in front of a future Hà Đông metro station on Tô Hiệu Road, the cafe is inside a stationary bus which has been redesigned.

A stationary bus is a bus that is standing still and not moving.

Redesigned means “designed again”.

Sâm said he came up with the idea for the cafe during a trip to Vĩnh Phúc Province north of the capital when he saw many damaged buses that had been abandoned and were going to waste.

Abandoned means left and uncared for.

He said his group repaired the bus with old parts such as tyres, and even today they try to improve the bus using recycled materials.

Things that are recycled would have been thrown away but are being used for another purpose.

The group stripped the interior of the bus to repaint it, made the driver's area a kitchen and used old tyres as tables, chairs and pots for plants.

By stripping the interior of the bus, the group remove things that decorated it, such as the paintwork.

The interior of the bus is the inside of the bus.

Retiree Nguyễn Văn Lợi, who is a regular customer of the cafe, likes the idea.

A retiree is someone who has retired, which means they have stopped working because of their age.

“It is a practical action to protect the environment and to respond to world organisations’ call to reduce plastic bags and other items that cause harm to the environment and our lives,” he said.

Respond means reply.

To reduce the number of plastic bags that cause harm means to bring their number down so there are not as many of them to do this harm.

Housewife Trần Thị Băng often brings her two children to the bus so she can show them how discarded products can be recycled.

Discarded means “thrown away because of no longer being of any use”.

Student Hoàng Trọng Minh from the National Economics University said the model was unique in Việt Nam.

If something is unique in Việt Nam there is only one of it in the country.

The customer experience is crucial for Sâm, so he said he was careful to choose safe ingredients and offered a money back guarantee.

Crucial means very important.

Ingredients are the different things that go into making a dish.

A guarantee is a promise.

"If it's because of the taste, the customer will not have to pay anything and if they say it's because they're in a hurry, I will ask my employee to wrap up their order to take it away,” he said.

Your employee is someone who works for you. If you work for someone else, you are their employee.

As a result, Hanoi Bus Cafe has seen increasing numbers of customers, from all walks of life.

Walks of life are the different backgrounds people come from.

WORKSHEET

State whether the following sentences are true, or false:

  1. Vĩnh Phúc Province is to the south of the capital.
  2. Trần Thị Băng often brings her two grandchildren to the bus.
  3. Hoàng Trọng Minh is a student.
  4. Lots of things in the bus are recycled.
  5. One can buy coconut coffee on the bus.

 

ANSWERS  1. False; 2. False; 3. True; 4. True; 5. True.

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