architect_ Nishizawa Architects
location_ Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam
project year_ 2013
photography_ Hiroyuki Oki
area_ 516 sqm

from the architects_

This is a duplex house in Binh Thanh District, HCMC designed for 2 families. One is a couple of the middle age and another is their son’s family with one grandchild. The couple required to stay at 2 floors at the bottom and their son’s family required to use the top 2 floors. Then we proposed 3 floating private blocks and 2 public spaces in between. In this concept, private block contains a lot of required functions like bedrooms, guest room, kitchen, Gym, Worship room and Laundry. And 2 public spaces, simply allocated for the living room for each family, are quite open and fluent with outside atmosphere because we can move all the glass doors open connecting the living space to the outside greenery and gardens. Additionally, we moved 3 floating blocks back and forth to get the enough light for gardens on each blocks and also designed the ceiling shape in order to get more efficient and differentiated light effect.

At the same time, since the house location is very close to the river and the beautiful green park, we proposed a sustainable housing concept with enough natural ventilation. When we talk about the sustainable technique in tropical building, we can say that the pattern block is reasonable, common and representing Vietnam. It prevents the harsh sunlight and heavy rain in addition to keep our privacy and safety. Then we decided to set up a target to design the house of pattern block. After the long study, we decided to use a pre-cast concrete pattern block with 60cm width and 40cm height, which will generate a beautiful light and shadow effect, referring to Le Corbusier’s work in India.

Although this house may look like a unique and new design without any context behind, however we actually referred to the Vietnamese traditional lifestyle and wisdom with a lot of greenery, natural ventilation and the pattern block. We hope this house would be one of the alternatives of the tropical sustainable house, which is the inevitable theme when we think about the development of Vietnamese cities.

Courtesy of Nishizawa Architects.