Free lunch at Sheraton

For a while now we have dabbled with the idea of buying property in Hanoi and as luck had it, Ritsu old friend Thuy invited us to a party of a real estate company, which appeared to be more ‘thank you’ to buyers (she had bought a unit with them) than hard core sales event. They pulled out all the stops, singers, dancers, fog machines, light show, glitter canons and very good food and drink.

There were presentation parts here and there, (pretty much) all in Vietnamese, but mainly showcasing how well they have been doing, that only a few units in this new building are still available, that one buyer purchased 7 apartments there …

Keeping in mind the ‘horror’ stories of time share sales parties (where they ply you with booze until you sign), I had my reservations and kept my guard up. It was fascinating to observe, but it was just a wee bit too much pomp … and I am still convinced that the western looking executive guy they introduced on stage was a paid actor. He seemed to be reading from script and did not hang around to say hello or answer questions (unlike the Vietnamese execs). I have read about that before that having a ‘white’ guy in the leadership branch sells trust here in Asia.

We ended up actually going to the building (still under construction) and donning hard hats to take the unfinished elevator to the 12th floor to look at some of the finished presentation units. From here we also got this great view of West Lake (and of course, those units with higher up views have an accordingly higher price tags)

We had a brief discussion with a sales rep, but he was not that well prepared to deal with foreigners and there were language issues and we just expected way more of a detailed calculation … so, no, we did not sign any contract that day.

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