Guidebook Hanoi Opera House

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Hanoi Opera House

A “beautiful example of French colonial architecture,” writes Rob McFarland at Traveller. “A small-scale replica of Paris's Opera Garnier, its yellow and white facade is a beguiling mix of imposing columns, ornate stonework and domed roofs.” And the interior is “equally impressive,” highlighted by a “stunning, sweeping marble staircase that leads to an intimate 900-seat venue smothered in red velvet.” Located on the famous August Revolution Square, it embraces the European Renaissance period architectural style with “Italian-made marble floor, copper chandeliers and exquisite French murals on the ceiling,” says Vietnam Online, “making the place one of Hanoi’s singular architectural landmarks.”  

It was frequented by French colonial officials and “largely unvisited by the Vietnamese” when it was completed in 1911 after 10 years of work, explains City Pass Guide. “For most of the French era, artists who performed at the Opera House were almost exclusively European, but in the 1940s Vietnamese could rent what they called ‘the Western theatre’ to hold special performances and concerts … today the “grand old lady” functions as a high-end venue for the the best of local and international performers, and as a popular tourist attraction and “photo spot both for travellers and newlywed Vietnamese.” The opera house regularly holds classical concerts, operas and ballets and “it's a wonderful chance to experience European-style grandeur at Asian-style prices,” says Traveller.

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