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24-seater bus turned into noodle eatery in Hanoi

Saturday, March 18, 2017, 13:05 GMT+7

A unique eatery in Hanoi where customers enjoy pho or bun cha not inside the house but on a renovated 24-seater bus has caused a stir on social media, but police were unhappy with the innovation.

The eatery on Pham Su Manh Street, Hoan Kiem District, sells pho (noodle with beef soup) in the morning and bun cha (rice noodle with grilled pork) for lunch.

With the main premises too narrow and putting tables and chairs on the sidewalk means violating the law, the eatery owner has come up with a unique idea – serving customers on a passenger bus parked across the road just in front of the house.

The 24-seater vehicle has had all of its seats removed to make space for two rows of tables and chairs along its sides, with the owner claiming the extra space is enough to accommodate 15 diners at a time.

The eatery attendants would carry the food past the street and hand over the dishes to customers via the bus windows.

L6fC9AsZ.pngStill photo from THVL footage

The bus has a quite spacious aisle and is equipped with a fire extinguisher.

The owner has said the bus was parked on a paid area and did not occupy the sidewalk, so his one-of-a-kind noodle eatery breached no rules.

Photos and videos of the bus-turned-eatery went viral on Facebook on Thursday, with curious people stopping by to enjoy the experience first-hand.

However, Hoan Kiem traffic inspectors visited the eatery in the afternoon the same day and decided that the bus did violate traffic laws.

The district’s chief traffic inspector Hoang Xuan Du said the bus did not pay the parking fee as it was temporarily parked there waiting for seat cover replacement.

The bizarre eatery also caused traffic disorders as the attendants kept on crossing the street to serve customers.

jl3w9nj9.pngStill photo from THVL footage

The noodle eatery was eventually fined VND2.5 million (US$112) for making use of the street to do business against the law, Du told Nguoi Lao Dong (Laborer) newspaper on Friday.

“The owner managed to show out all valid papers of the vehicle, saying it was parked there pending for the seat repairs,” Du said.

“I told him if the bus needed repairs, it must have been in the garage, not on the street.”

At around 4:00 pm on Thursday, the bus was driven away.

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