Abandoned printing factory transformed into creative hub
Update: Aug 04, 2021
An abandoned printing factory tucked away down a small alley on Tay Son street, Dong Da district, Hanoi, has been transformed into Complex 01, a cultural and creative hub. This multi-functional site for entertainment, shopping, and art, has been a hit among young Hanoians recently.   
Complex 01 encompasses a playground, a folk game area, a library, an exhibition and talk show hall, and a handicraft workshop. A blend of classic and contemporary styles, Complex 01 gets visitors to a large area full of natural light.
Nguyen Nhu Quynh is one of the managers. She said, "We treasure historical values. This old factory doesn’t stop creating new values for our community. We want to retain the architecture of the printing factory in use between 1940 and 1960  to serve culture and entertainment purposes, the kind of things we here in Hanoi are falling short of. This three-story complex has clothing stores, restaurants, cafes, beauty salons, creativity workshops, and an exhibition hall, a fun place for young adults and families to spend time together. We also have charitable activities here.”
(Photo: Complex 01)
A 100-square-meter event hall is at the heart of Complex 01, which dedicates a small part of it to a wooden bridge, a seesaw, and a swing among other toys. A female instrumentalist told VOV, “In this room, we can play the guitar, we can sing. And if you want a modern-interior space, you can find it on the second floor.”
A part of Complex 01 is “Creative Garage,” which hosts frequent workshops for kids on design, construction, architecture, science, and art. The workshop is equipped with wood plates, small saws, rotary shafts, and sample models.
Nguyen Thu Duyen, who sent her two kids to a training course here, said, “They have attended five classes. They love them so much that they want to go to Creative Garage every day. I cannot create a learning environment like this for my kids at home. Here they can play and interact with other people and crafts, something they haven’t done before. It is interesting and helpful. I love it as much as the kids do.”
Kids enjoy craft activities at Complex 01. (Photo: nhandan.com)
There are many successful models of turning old factories into creative and profitable complexes. Hanoi is now capitalizing on the trend.