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Hoi An bars, restaurants required to turn down music, close by midnight

Tuesday, February 27, 2018, 22:00 GMT+7
Hoi An bars, restaurants required to turn down music, close by midnight
Once a romantic street embanking the mesmerizing Hoai River, Nguyen Phuc Chu is now filled with annoying music coming from the bars. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Bars and restaurants in Hoi An must lower music after 10:00 pm and close by midnight, according to new regulations.

The police force and patrols are also tasked with supervising the motorcycle taxi drivers luring tourists to the bars.

Nguyen Van Son, vice-chairman of the Hoi An People’s Committee, announced the reorganization of the entertainment services in Hoi An on Monday.

According to the new regulations, food and entertainment services must not operate past midnight.

There must be an announcement of closing broadcast to patrons at least 15 minutes in advance.

False advertisements on social media and websites with closing hours later than 12:00 am are strictly prohibited.

Bars and restaurants are also required to ensure that the volume of music is lower than 50 dB after 10:00 pm and keep signage and tables off sidewalks.

Providing support to the drunk or seemingly drunk patrons is encouraged while selling banned products such as meth or laughing gas is prohibited.

Businesses must not collude with shills and motorbike taxi drivers to lure tourists into their restaurants or bars.

Any violation will be penalized. Police patrols will be dispatched to maintain order of the nightlife in the old town.

Food and entertainment services in Hoi An were previously allowed to open until 12:00 am to attract foreign tourists, aid the economic scene of this old town, and help alleviate unemployment in the area, according to vice-chairman Son.

The current situation, however, portrays chaotic nightlife in this ancient town. Bars with annoying music pounding past midnight, occupied sidewalks, shills and motorcycle drivers harassing tourists, leading them to the bars, and other issues are tarnishing the beauty of this once beloved tourist destination.

Only three out of 27 bars in Hoi An are licensed, according to Le Van Binh, chief of Hoi An’s tourism and commerce office.

Nguyen Phuc Chu Street alone is home to 14 unregistered bars, greatly affecting the scenic Hoai River nearby.

The last straw was the attack on Margan, a French tourist, carried out by a group of motorbike taxi drivers on January 25.

Authorities were left with no choice but to issue regulations tightening the activity of local restaurants and bars beginning in February 2018, forcing close-down if necessary, so that Hoi An could retain its image and commercial values.

According to Son, the People’s Committee will do anything in its power to rid Hoi An of negative images and bring back the order and tranquility the old town needs.

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