We’re a big fan of The Rusty Compass website. So when we found out that Mark Bowyer, the owner of the website, was opening up a cafe with his team, we jumped on the opportunity to swing by and check it out.
The Old Compass Cafe, a hidden downtown cafe in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Situated next to the Liberty Central Saigon Citypoint Hotel and the now relocated Lotus Gallery, The Old Compass Cafe’s location is sandwiched between the new and old. The cafe is located on the third floor of a heritage building.
Why We Like It
It’s incredibly cozy. Tucked down an alleyway of one of Ho Chi Minh City’s busiest and historically significant streets, The Old Compass Cafe is an ideal refuge from the buzz of the street below. The furniture is top notch and interior design simple and understated. I love spending my late mornings and afternoons at The Old Compass Cafe when I find myself on Pasteur Street.
While the pricing is fair for the location, it is a bit more expensive than options just below. Their set lunch is fixed at 150,000 for a three or four course Vietnamese meal with a drink. Your choice of a coffee, coconut, or beer. The value is excellent given the consistent crowd that you’ll meet there, the quality food and drink, and relaxing and air conditioned but not freezing interior!
Tips for a Great Experience
Even though it’s a cafe, it opens late at 10:30am. I’ve come a few times at 9:00am expecting it was open, only to find out that I’d have to find somewhere else to get my morning coffee. Make sure to plan your schedule around that! The lunch menu is excellent, sizable and quality portions for a fair price. They also feature a well-prepared vegetarian set menu if you’re looking to go with something healthier.
While I haven’t been in the evenings, I hear good things about their happy hour and event series. I’d check it out if you’re looking to meet some like-minded folks or enjoy a good glass of wine in a relaxing setting.