Singapore’s largest shopping mall VivoCity will branch out in Vietnam with the construction of SC VivoCity now underway in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon).
SC VivoCity is a joint venture between Vietnam’s Saigon Co.op Investment Development JSC (SCID), an affiliate of Saigon Co.op and Singapore’s Mapletree Investments (Mapletree), a fully-owned subsidiary of Temasek Holdings.
Situated at Nguyen Van Linh Boulevard, Tan Phong Ward, in the expat hub of District 7, SC VivoCity has been hailed as “a multi-experiential one-stop family-lifestyle destination mall for middle to middle-upper class Vietnamese as well as expatriates living and working in Ho Chi Minh City”.
Locals will be perplexed by the development coming so soon after the country’s largest shopping centre Crescent Mall opened in District 7 in December. It remains only half tenanted and is battling to raise its profile and get shoppers in its doors. That said, Crescent Mall has already built a core of expats and local middle class Vietnamese, helped by the opening of Hong Kong-based Dairy Farm International’s first Giant supermarket in the city.
With a combined investment cost of US$100 million from both companies, SC VivoCity forms part of Saigon South Place complex, a 4.4 hectare integrated mixed-use development which also comprises modern grade-A high rise office towers and internationally operated serviced apartments, with total GFA of 267,000sqm.
The broader integrated development will cost US$360 million.
SC VivoCity will feature 72,000sqm of retail space spread over five floors and a basement. HOK, one of the US’ largest design firms, will design the architecture and interior of the shopping mall.
SC VivoCity will embrace the attributes of Singapore’s VivoCity mall, a popular lifestyle destination.
The mall will feature fashion retailers, a hypermarket, a cineplex, as well as lifestyle, entertainment, education and food and beverage outlets. It will further bear “unique features” such as a skypark (a sky deck is under construction at Crescent Mall so we’re not sure how unique this will be) and a children’s playground on its rooftop.
Saigon Co.op will collaborate with NTUC FairPrice Singapore to set up the new 8000sqm hypermarket, Co-op Xtra, in the mall’s basement.
“The groundbreaking marks a significant milestone in the diversification strategy of the modern retail business of Saigon Co.op and SCID. SC VivoCity shopping mall, the first phase of Saigon South Place complex, combines Mapletree’s management experience in commercial complexes and shopping malls across Asia with Saigon Co.op’s retail experience and understanding of the Vietnam market,” said Nguyen Ngoc Hoa, chairman of Saigon Co.op, SCID and chairman of Vietsin Commercial Complex Development Joint Stock Company (VCCD).
“It is envisaged that SC VivoCity will become a truly international retail and leisure destination in Ho Chi Minh City.”
SC VivoCity is scheduled for completion in the first quarter of 2014. One hopes Crescent Mall will be full by then and a waiting pool of tenants looking for alternative locations to open…
Meanwhile, substantial additional apartment housing is currently under construction in the district, with more planned, suggesting there could be sufficient catchment in time to support two massive centres.