Hanoi authorities are considering a fine against a restaurant for putting women in swimwear to serve drinks to customers after several photos of the waitresses went viral.
To Van Dong, director of Hanoi Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, said his agency will announce a strong punitive measure, adding that the act was “against Vietnam's traditional culture and fine customs."
Images of the waitresses at the restaurant on Tran Thai Tong Street spread on social networks early this week. The waitresses can be seen serving beer and sitting next to the customers. The photos are believed to be taken on Sunday.
Lam, the restaurant manager, confirmed that the photos had been taken at his restaurant.
However, he claimed that the women were hired by Saigon Beer-Alcohol-Beverage JSC (Sabeco) to promote and boost sales of its own products.
He said most of the so-called "promotion girls" were wearing formal clothes except for a few.
“The ones in bikinis were here for only one or two minutes. We asked them to cancel the promotional campaign after seeing how they were dressed,” he said.
Truong Van Tuan, director of Sabeco’s northern branch, rejected the claim, saying his company had never run such a campaign at the restaurant.
Earlier on May 6, Hanoi cultural inspectors issued a fine of VND40 million (US$1,795) against an electronics store for using women in swimwear to promote its business.
The managers of Tran Anh electronics store claimed that they were only filming "sex education videos."