Mai Village faces foreclosure, seeks community support

Mai Village may be forced to close due to financial issues
Mai Village may be forced to close due to financial issues
Ed Neaton
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Through the thick and thin of economic recession and construction in the Central Corridor, St. Paul's Mai Village Vietnamese restaurant has remained the object of both popular and critical affection. But now it appears that Minnesota's first million-dollar Vietnamese restaurant may be facing foreclosure for the second time since it opened, reports MPR.

The restaurant's owners, Mai Nguyen and Ngoan Dang, are five months behind on their mortgage payments and are now trying to find a way to drum up the $150,000 they need to get themselves back in the black. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like they have very much time to meet their financial goals: The Ramsey County sheriff's sale of the property has already been scheduled for October 24. 

In 2007 the restaurant was on similarly shaky ground but managed to stave off foreclosure after receiving some personal loans. This time around, the debt is much greater, and the owners have already downsized their staff. Even if they are able to raise the money, Nguyen admits they would have a long road ahead to try to stay afloat. 

In an effort to increase those odds, St. Paul's Asian Economic Development Association is setting up a PayPal account and Facebook page (looks like they're still in the midst of filling it out) to support the cause. The AEDA is particularly concerned that Mai Village's possible closing would signal the beginning of the end for other smaller restaurants on University. That could derail the association's plans to rebrand that swath of the neighborhood as "Little Mekong" when light-rail construction is complete.

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Mai Village

394 W. University Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55103


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