|A small-sized bronze rooster is seen at a market in hanoi
The bronze rooster sculptures can be found on sale along busy shopping streets in the capital including Hang Ma and Luong Van Can, with buyers prepared to pay handsomely for the sculptures.
Hung, a car salesman in Hanoi, bought the biggest available model for VND25 million (US$1,116) to give to his in-laws as a Tet present.
Tet is the Vietnamese way of referring to the Lunar New Year festival, which lasts for a week starting on January 28.
In previous years, Hung would buy a pair of live roosters, as per custom.
The car salesman said besides the originality and good design, the bronze rooster sculptures make the perfect gift for the upcoming Year of the Rooster.
Besides the VND25 million model, Hung spent nearly VND10 million ($446) on a smaller one for his own family.
The sculptor, Mai, comes from Dai Bai, a famous bronze sculpture craft village in the nearby province of Bac Ninh.
“We transported a truck load of the sculptures from the village to Dong Xuan Market in Hanoi ten days before Tet,” she said.
Mai revealed that her village had been making bronze rooster sculptures for years, but the product has only become sought after in the "Tet of the rooster."
“To embrace the opportunity, artisans at the village have been introducing many new designs,” she added.
As per tradition, the rooster can help prevent ‘bad energy’ and conflict, bringing happiness and luck. “This is why the bronze rooster statues are selling well this year,” Mai said.
She confirmed that the VND25 million model is the biggest and most expensive among her family’s product line.
Smaller models, suitable for work desks, can cost between VND700,000 ($31.25) and VND1 million ($45), while larger ones, appropriate for living rooms, are priced from VND2 million ($89) to VND5 million ($223), according to the vendor.
But the thousand-dollar bronze sculpture is not the most expensive gift affluent Vietnamese might want to consider this year.
Tuan, who runs several bronze gift shops in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, revealed that some customers had placed orders for rooster sculptures made from pure gold.
“A golden rooster weighs some 0.5 to 1kg, with prices calculated based on the current gold rate plus production cost,” Tuan said.
Vietnamese gold closed on Sunday at VND36.4 million ($1,625) a tael (37.5 grams), or VND968.2 million ($43,223) a kg.
Tuan made no secret of the fact that he is working on four orders of the golden roosters, each valued at approximately VND1 billion ($44,643).Tuoitrenews