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Saigon door (Saigon currently closed) Credit: Sophia Ciocca , Sophia Ciocca

While students may have been too busy studying for finals to notice the opening of Saigon Cuisine at the end of December, they will now have to wait even longer to visit the new restaurant.

Saigon Cuisine opened on 40th and Chestnut streets to replace the French-Thai restaurant Nan. Nan’s owner, Kamol Phutlek, fell ill and closed the restaurant last spring. Joey Sang opened Saigon Cuisine in December as a Vietnamese BYOB, yet he moved in without receiving a permit or a certificate of occupancy.

Giovanni Caputo, a building inspector for Philadelphia’s Department of Licenses and Inspections, issued an order to Saigon Cuisine on Dec. 26 to cease operations until the proper documents and certifications were acquired.

Additionally, Caputo found that Sang had not installed a necessary sprinkler system in the space nor obtained a fire suppression permit.

Sang could not be reached for comment.

Caputo explained that Sang has filed for a permit. Once the permit is reviewed and once a sprinkler system is installed, Caputo will be able to issue Saigon Cuisine a certificate of occupancy.

“Saigon Cuisine restaurant is only temporarily closed,” Facilities and Real Estate Services Executive Director of Real Estate Ed Datz said. “We anticipate that the issue will be resolved and the permit obtained to allow the restaurant to reopen before the end of the month.”

Students eagerly await the opening of the new Vietnamese restaurant.

“We don’t have a Vietnamese restaurant on campus,” College and Wharton sophomore Rebecca Finkel said. “I think Saigon Cuisine will be a great addition to campus and I am excited to try it once it opens.”

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