Authorities at the resort town of Sa Pa have ordered the closure of an unauthorized tourist area that has installed a controversial replica of the Statue of Liberty of the United States.
Vuong Trinh Quoc, chairman of the city’s People’s Committee, said on Wednesday that registration at An Sa Pa was to be closed “because it has not been certified as a tourist destination” and that some of his works, including the replica of the statue, “does not meet regulatory and aesthetic requirements”.
“The project must be in accordance with the tourist town planning of the city and in harmony with the image of the city as a whole. Even if it is built inside a private space, it cannot be so.
Sa Pa, in Lao Cai province, northern Vietnam, is a famous tourist attraction with ethnic culture, beautiful mountains and rice terraces.
The Statue of Liberty at check-in at An Sapa, an unlicensed tourist resort in the town of Sa Pa, in April 2021. Photo by VnExpress / Giang Huy.
Local agencies study the provisions of the building law, land law, regulations instituted by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, and copyright laws to decide whether they could issue a license for check-in at An Sapa.
Nguyen Ngoc Dong, director of An Sapa Co. Ltd., owner of the tourist site, said the purpose of making replicas of famous statues and wonders of the world is to provide tourists with impressive images for photos.
“The statue encountered backlash online after a photo was posted during the Lunar New Year holiday (in February) while it was still under construction. It was not completed until March,” added Dong.
The company completes the procedures at the request of the local authority to obtain a license.
The statue has been the butt of jokes online in recent days.
A reader wrote to VnExpress saying, “The statue appears to have had a failed plastic surgery.” Another wrote: “The sight alone is funny. “
The An Sapa registration covers more than 1.7 hectares. It had been operated since the end of 2020 without a license.
The region also has replicas of the Eiffel Tower in France, the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy, and Mount Rushmore in the United States.
Sa Pa is famous for its beautiful rice terraces. Photo by VnExpress / Ngan Duong.