The Globe as you know it is changing.
Coming June 2019

  • More thought-provoking stories that inspire
  • Independent, free and member-supported
  • Vote for, pitch and commission stories
  • Member engagement with our journalists

To understand more about why you are so important to our member-supported initiative, we encourage you to read the following from our managing editor ~ Read more

The Globe as you know it is changing.

Since 2007, Southeast Asia Globe has been a space for some of the region’s best writers and photographers to take our readers behind the headlines into the stories that shape people’s lives. Every month, you could expect to pick up our latest print edition and find high-quality journalism, analysis and artwork waiting on every page. And since 2007, we’ve fought to uphold our promise of quality and independence to you, our readers.

But, like we said, the world is changing. Print publications just aren’t reaching the audiences they need to fulfil their promise of informing, educating and entertaining the public. Advertisers continue to invest in digital platforms while printing costs creep ever higher. Print may not be dead, but it’s fighting for its life. And we’re tired of waiting by a sickbed for its condition to improve. We want to be present at the birth of something new.

That’s why Southeast Asia Globe is relaunching as a member-driven platform featuring daily long-form features combining world-class journalism with enthralling art design and data-centered tech. Through our core pillars – Power, Money, Life and Earth – we are focusing in on the central issues that our readers have always engaged with most, with the same in-depth coverage of politics, business, social affairs and the environment that you’ve come to expect since 2007.

But leaving print behind us doesn’t just save our backs from lugging stacks of magazines across Southeast Asia. It opens up a global readership who don’t just want to read the news, but have a say in the stories that we tell and the way that we tell them. We’re not asking you to take out another magazine subscription – our stories are open to all. What we’re offering our members is a space where they can pitch and vote on the stories that they think deserve to be told. We want to inspire an engaged and active community of members who vote for, comment on and contribute to the stories that matter most to them. We want to work with our members to curate the way they engage with the news – not just as readers, but as an active extension of our editorial team.

That’s how we’re changing to bring you great stories. Here’s how we’re not.

We’re independent. Always have been, always will be. We’re not owned by any corporation or aligned with any state. We choose the stories that we tell, and the way that we tell them.

We’re creative. We’re not interested in churning out breaking news stories on the hour, every hour. We believe that the best stories are the ones that come alive on the page, digging deeper into the issues that shape Southeast Asia – and bringing you along for the ride. From our dedicated designers to our new software development team, our commitment is to constantly challenge ourselves to find new ways of reaching out to our readers.

We’re open. Challenging governments, NGOs and businesses to be transparent with the public means nothing if we keep our own readers in the dark. That’s why we will be completely open about why we tell the stories that we tell – and how we pay for them. Work with us to build something that endures where many media fail, and decide with us exactly where that money is going.

Above all, we’re optimistic. And yeah, we know what you’re thinking. Faced with impending climate collapse, the rise of right-wing authoritarian governments across the world, widening wealth and income inequality and deepening divisions rooted in race or gender or creed, it’s hard not to open the papers and feel the weight of the world pressing down. But we wouldn’t be doing this if we didn’t believe that when people work together, they can make their little corner of the world a more just, open and equal place.

And that’s why we can’t do this without you. We believe that across the globe is a community of people who care deeply about social justice, environmental action and press freedom – and who will join in to help make those ideals a reality. We’re not just holding our hand out – we need your voice to play a vital role in building Southeast Asia Globe into a leading space for progressive causes in the region. Tell us what stories the mainstream media is missing. Share with us the causes that matter most to you, and how we can champion those causes not just across Southeast Asia, but the world.

Our vision is clear. By 2025, we want to be recognised for building a great space for outstanding journalists from across the region to explore new ways of telling Southeast Asia’s most vital stories. Let’s bring together a community of engaged and loyal members who want to help reshape the media rather than just read it. And we want to reach a point where our readers, not advertisers, are the ones working to support our shared vision of an inclusive media.

We can’t do this without you. Let’s get together and build something that we all believe in.

If you’re interested in joining us, sign up to our newsletter, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter. And watch this space.

The Myst Dong Khoi / A historic getaway in Ho Chi Minh

By: Euan Black - Posted on: February 2, 2018 | Featured

A celebration of Ho Chi Minh City’s storied past, the Myst Dong Khoi weaves historical motifs into its homely, modern design

A SENSE OF HISTORY

From the black-and-white photographs of well-to-do Vietnamese families to the lobby ceiling constructed with parts salvaged from the demolished Ba Son shipyard, not to mention the gigantic, hanging anchor that greets guests as they enter, the Myst Dong Khoi offers travellers a window into the soul of ‘old Saigon’. Boasting exposed ceilings and peppered with countless curios, the Myst’s corridors are designed to replicate the city’s network of bustling backstreets and alleyways, while cut-and-paste room numbers are replaced with vintage house number plaques. These reminders of a fast-fading past lend the Myst a historical, lived-in charm that throws the city’s unbridled development into sharp relief.

FEEL AT HOME

Effortlessly blending modern fittings with warm teak floors and furniture, the Myst’s 108 guestrooms exude an air of sophistication reminiscent of the colonial villas that once lined the streets of the ‘Paris of the Orient’ – but never at the expense of comfort. Coloured feature walls, vintage telephones and paintings of idyllic rural scenes create a homely aesthetic while retaining a definite sense of style. Dressed in a bright-orange, silk ao dai, your gregarious hostess reminds you that, whether you choose to unwind with a refreshing tea served in ceramics designed by local studio Dong Gia or bathe in the whirlpool bathtub ensconced in the private balcony garden, “you now live in Saigon”.

ROOFTOP RELAXATION

A well-worn skiff that doubles up as a buffet station sees the Nest, the hotel’s in-house restaurant, stay true to the heritage feel underpinning the property’s interior design. During afternoon tea – a complimentary indulgence extended to all guests – the last of the day’s sun creeps through the building’s hanging-gardens-of- Babylon exterior and burnishes the Nest with a hazy orange glow that stills the senses. The remains of the day, however, are best enjoyed one floor up, reclining in one of two cabanas set into the hotel’s rooftop pool.

IN THE THICK OF IT

Situated among the heritage buildings that provide the backdrop to Graham Greene’s The Quiet American, the Myst is nestled in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City in busy District 1, where the days are filled with the roar of motorbikes and the scent from the aromatic herbs of the country’s famed street food. As well as the architecture and growing pool of noteworthy bars and restaurants, the city’s commercial hub is home to an impressive array of art galleries and boutiques that have escaped the Western-style consumerism that has taken much of the city by storm. Most notable among them is a crumbling 1940s residential block named 14 Ton That Dam Street that has been taken over by a group of young Vietnamese fashion designers, café owners and retailers.

OUT AND ABOUT

There’s an enduring appeal to breezing through a city by boat, one that clearly chimes with the staff at the Myst, who happily arrange tours for guests keen to take in the must-see sights from both the Saigon River and the city’s web of waterways. But for those who prefer to remain on land, we’d recommend a night at the opera house. Somewhat resembling a grand European city gate, the red-and-gold theatre is but three short blocks from the hotel. Flavour of the month is A O Lang Pho, a Cirque du Soleil-inspired contemporary dance performance that tells the story of Vietnam’s rural inhabitants coming to terms with the country’s disorientating urbanisation.

This article was published in the February edition of Southeast Asia Globe magazine. For full access, subscribe here.

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