Vietnam – Mach’s Gym, Ho Chi Minh City

 

Location: Mach’s Gym, 01 Huyen Tran Cong Chua Street, Ben Thanh Ward District, Ho Chi Minh City
Google Maps: Click here
Tel: (08)62751196
WebsiteFacebook
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday – 6am to 9.30pm
Sunday – 10am to 6pm
Price: 70,000 VND (Approx £2)

Like the look of this gym? If you want to stay nearby then you can check out the links to hotels within walking distance at the end of this article.


Review: Ho Chi Minh City is the home of a million asshole drivers. Just crossing the road here feels like you are taking your life in your hands. No-one pays even the slightest notice to the rules of the road and traffic lights appear to act a little more than pretty street lights which no-one pays attention to. Scooters outnumber cars in this city and they have even less regard for human life. They drive the wrong way down the road, pull out without looking and regularly ride on the pavement, even when the roads are free. This is an INSANE place.

 

I say that to say this. As with any major city, there are a large number of gyms to choose from. My advice would be to pick a hotel, of which there are 100s, that is near to a decent gym. A 5 or 10 min walk in this city is just about ok, but walking any further to the gym can be seriously slow and exhausting. The traffic is also so bad that you can pretty much forget about getting a taxi anywhere in the city centre unless you have to. I know this because I did a number of such walks to find new gyms for this blog. You owe me.

The first gym that I found in Ho Chi Minh after my obligatory “gyms in Ho Chi Minh City” search was Mach’s Gym. Mach’s is owned by Mr Pham Van Mach, a Vietnamese 4 time world bodybuilding champion and 7 consecutive time Asian bodybuilding championship. As well as his impressive competition record, he is also a famous actor, and singer, and he recently starred in the movie, A Perfect Couple. This is him:
So the owner certainly has the credentials. But what about the gym? Well, its been open for 9 years and is well established and known locally. As you might expect from a gym owned by a body builder, there is plenty of strength equipment here, including olympic bars and heavy dumbbells.

The gym has:

  • Dumbbells up to 40kg
  • Adjustable benches
  • Smith machine
  • Olympic bars
  • Incline barbell bench
  • Flat barbell bench
  • Lat pulldown
  • Lat pulldown machine
  • Pull up bars
  • Cables
  • Calf raise machine
  • Leg press machine
  • Leg extension machine
  • Chest press machine
  • Seated low row machine
  • Easy bar
  • Preacher curl bench
  • Shoulder press machine
  • Abs machine
  • Oblique abs machine
  • Leg raise platform
  • Treadmills
  • Cross trainers
  • Static bikes

As of fairly recently, the gym has a new membership fees structure, with a one day pass now costing 70,000 VND (approx £2.50) and a months membership costing 680,000 VND.

The gym also has a small protein bar and seating area. As well as water, the gym also sells tubs of protein and a few other basic supplements. As I had managed to locate some protein powder in Ho Chi Minh City, I didn’t use this but I have read online that the staff are sometimes too lazy to make people shakes and claim that they are too busy to do so even if the gym is empty. If this has happened to you, let me know in the comments as I am sure the owner would like to hear about this. I am also sure that any bodybuilder would hate the idea of people going protein-less in his gym.

Who is it for? The gym here is professional, clean and felt safe. It is located in a sports complex next to some tennis and football courts, just off the main road. It is pretty central in the town, so I can see no reason not to recommend this gym to everyone. Despite being owned by a bodybuilder, the gym has plenty of cardio equipment and had people of all levels training in there. It certainly isn’t a meathead gym, so head down and check it out.

Tips: Besides the gym and the sports centre are a string of small sports shops selling everything from gym gloves to yoga mats and gym equipment. If you need some new gym kit then this is likely to be the place to get it, as it will be much cheaper than the stores in the bigger malls. For example, you could pick up a pair of trainers here for about 400,000 VND (approx £14)

Nearby Hotels:

$ – Cititel Boutique Ben Thanh: From £20

$$ – The Luxe Hotel: From £29

$$$ – Avanti Hotel: From £32

Photos: