When a modern house takes extra pains to be traditional

By Thai Binh   January 23, 2019 | 01:11 pm GMT+7

A house in a coastal village of northern Vietnam catches the eye with its creative design and use of local materials.

House beach in northern Vietnam allures international eyes 

This unusual house is a gift from a son to his mother after his father passed away. Its facade is a wall of specially-made wind porcelain tiles.

The owner wanted the house to be a place for him to return to his childhood, retaining the lifestyle of a traditional family in a modern space.

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The house uses a lot of uncommon, custom-made materials, so it costs more than other typical houses. The owner did not disclose how big difference was, but said that the investment is totally worth the sustainability and energy savings.

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The house, situated on a 78 square meter plot, was designed by architect Nguyen Tuan Nghia (Nghia-Architect Company). Completed in 2017, it is located in a coastal village in Nam Dinh Province, the Red River Delta region in northern Vietnam.

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The area suffers often from erratic weather, including big storms, so the front of the house is made of 3 flexible layers.

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The outer layer is made entirely from ventilated bricks (wind brick tiles) which were carefully researched and custom-made in Hanoi’s Bat Trang village, famous for its pottery tradition that has lasted seven centuries and is still going strong.

The hollow bricks placed in the middle are the insulation layer that helps cool the facade under direct sunlight. The bricks are made of porcelain, increasing durability and resistance to the harsh climate.

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The second layer is the green tree system, which adds privacy and calms the light that comes in from the outside.

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The third layer is a tough glass door, which is flexible. It is also designed in such a way that it is easy for the owner’s mother to close the main door of the house during big storms.

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During the warmer months, the glass doors are pulled up, connecting the indoor space with the outside porch. Or when a wider space for the whole family is needed to gather for dinner.

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The bedroom wall is made of honeycomb stone - a natural material brought from Son Tay, a town in Hanoi. The stone is rarely used in interiors due to its roughness and difficulty in assembling. But local stone craftsmen have smoothened their edges to create a wall with arched windows.

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To reflect his childhood memories of banana plants around the house, banana leaf designs have been ingrained into the walls using what is known as the intaglio technique.

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The house has a lot of space, making room for all family members when reunions take place.

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Brightness and spaciousness have been integral to the house design.

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The house's eye-catching features caught the eye of Archdaily and Architizer, a leading American architecture site and an Italian one named DesignBoom early this year.

It has also been listed among works competing for Vietnam's National Architecture Award 2018, the results of which have not been announced yet.

Photos by Nguyen Tien Thanh

 
 
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