A Parisian-style cafe in Vietnam
Like a Parisian sidewalk café where people-watching is the sport du jour, Ho Tram Resort Casino Vietnam’s Ca Phe Le Monde is an ideal place to sit and see the surrounding hustle and bustle. Located on the corner of the resort’s main indoor intersection where the lobby meets a pair of busy signature restaurants (Brasserie serves French nouvelle cuisine, Ju Bao Xuan offers traditional Cantonese), the café also has views of the resort’s late-night destination Club 9. Sooner or later, nearly every guest will walk by this chic little spot for coffee and sweets.
The café’s 41 seats are spread mostly around small, bistro-style tables along the outer perimeter — ideal for watching models, minor celebrities and mortals go by. The décor is all French bistro chic, with mosaic floors, dark wood accents and soft chandelier lighting. If you’re looking for a quiet spot for conversation or to curl up with a magazine, arrive early and grab one of the comfy upholstered sofas or armchairs.
Its name gives off an indication of what’s on the menu: ca phe is the Vietnamese spelling of “coffee” and you’ll find homegrown varieties featured on the menu. We particularly like slow-filtered Trung Nguyên coffee, the country’s leading brand, as well as the ca-phe sua da, Vietnam’s ubiquitous iced coffee — it’s an intense drip coffee sweetened with condensed milk and makes for a glass of rich, velvety smooth goodness. The Le Monde part of its name (“the world” in French) speaks to the international favorites here. Cappuccinos, macchiatos, lattes and other coffee-based drinks are served hot or frozen. Non-caffeinated frozen drinks are available, too. Our favorite? A frozen concoction made with local ingredients, including strawberries from Dalat in Vietnam’s Central Highlands region.
There’s a selection of soups, salads and sandwiches, including expertly grilled panini. Those who don’t mind an indulgence or two will appreciate the mouth-watering French crepes, both sweet and savory. Sweeter options include salted butter caramel, vanilla ice cream with caramelized apple, and toppings like grilled almonds and whipped cream. The savory crepes are topped with tasty combos like ground beef and cheddar cheese, ham and Emmental cheese, and spinach and chicken.
A large glass case filled with pastries and tempting treats are on display, including a cream caramel with exotically aromatic pandan leaf, wild berry panna cotta, truffle pralines and black forest cake. If you can hold off until 7 p.m. (and that’s a big if), you can get bakery items for half off — quite the temptation.