Thursday, March 25, 2010

Can Tho Ancient House

Buried in a warren of streets north of Can Tho city in the Mekong Delta is the ‘Ancient House’. Mr Duong Minh Hien, 85, invited us in to admire the interior of his late 19th-century home. The exterior, set in a courtyard of frangipani trees, is a hybrid of Western and Oriental creation adorned with stucco flourishes. This Ancient House — Nha Co Binh Thuy — was used in the 1992 film ‘The Lover’ based on the novel by French writer Marguerite Duras. Duras was born in Vietnam in 1914 after her parents went to work in the colony. After her father died the family lived at Sa Dec in the delta. Duras embarked on an illicit affair with an older Chinese man; the novel is semi-autobiographical. Director Jean-Jacques Annaud was based at this Can Tho house for two weeks for filming while on location in Vietnam; a film poster signed by the director is proudly displayed by Mr Duong.
Inside the house exquisitely carved wood climbed around pillars — frolicking deer, perched birds and a froth of ferns and palms in an Elysian setting. Blue ceramics and inlaid mother of pearl decorated furniture and door frames; in one corner an abandoned ceramic sink patterned with twirling blue flowers yearned for attention.


  1. Also the house in Sa Dec is very charming one as well.

    They also receive customer to stay over night in small simple yet nice guest room. Afternoon tea is serve in a small garden outside.

    Experience that would be nice as well