Francis Xavier Catheral
On December 3, 1900, at the Feast of St. Francis Xavier, Saigon Bishop Mossard placed the first stone for the church built for the Chinese in Saigon – which is Francis Xavier Cathedral today.
The church was inaugurated on January 10, 1902. After that, parish Tam Asson built a school, a kindergarten, a boarding house, and houses for rent in the church.In 1934, Father Tam died and he was buried at the entrance wall of the church. Therefore, the church is often called Cha Tam (Father Tam) Church.
Cha Tam Cathedral or St. Francis Xavier Cathedral in Cho Lon has the inside decoration much similar to a Chinese temple. Built around the turn of the 19th century, this decaying light-caramel painted church exudes a sleepy, tropical feel. The mint green and white church interior is decorated with images of the stations of the cross, while holy water is dispensed from huge clam shells. The statue in the tower is of François Xavier Tam Assou (1855–1934).
In 1990, the church steeple and the sanctuary were refurbished. Today the church has a very active congregation of 3000 ethnic Vietnamese and 2000 ethnic Chinese. Masses are held daily.
Soai Kinh Lam Fabric Market
Soai Kinh Lam Fabric Market or Dong Khanh Department Store in Tran Hung Dao Street in District 5 is a big fabric market with nearly 500 stalls.There is an endless selection of silks, suit material, cotton for shirts, and material for curtains, corduroy, tartans, and denim. You can get lots of outrageously bright, highly-patterned material here.The characteristic of the market is that each stall sells a certain kind of material with different colors and designs.