Date
May 15, 2020
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Part of the “House for Trees” series, Ha Long Villa was designed to multiply the green area that the property was built on by including greenery on every floor level and the roof.

Ha Long Villa is situated in the coastal town of Ha Long in Vietnam, just 150km northeast of Hanoi. Vietnam has seen a huge economic growth in the past few years thanks to the booming tourism in the country. 

Why Ha Long Villa? In order to tackle the destruction of nature due to reckless developments and bridge the divide between people and the natural environment

Vietnam is renowned for its nature and townscapes, many of which are registered as World Heritage Sites, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ha Long Bay that is nearby to Ha Long Villa.

Ha Long Villa - birds view
Ha Long Villa is situated in the coastal town of Ha Long in Vietnam, just 150km northeast of Hanoi

The minds behind Ha Long Villa – VTN Architects

VTN Architects (Vo Trong Nghia Architects) is a leading Vietnamese architectural practice that was founded in 2006. They have offices in both Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi where their 60 international architects and engineers work on commercial and residential projects across the world.

The practice pride themselves on designing “green architecture” for the 21st century that uses local and natural materials while maintaining the essence of Asian architectural expression. They also explore ways in which light, wind, and water can be used within the architectural design to help connect contemporary architecture with nature

Ha Long Villa - exterior
Ha Long Villa tackles the destruction of nature due to reckless developments and bridges the divide between people and the natural environment

Materials & Techniques – Exposed concrete and greenery

The exterior walls of Ha Long Villa were manufactured using rough exposed concrete that resembles the tones and textures of the stone found in Ha Long Bay. In the spaces in the concrete, various trees were planted to provide a beautiful contrast between rough concrete and soft greenery.

The trees cast shows across the external façade, that move throughout the day as the sun travels westward in the sky. The shadows highlight the strong concrete façade and provide an ever-changing aesthetic

Ha Long Villa - facade closeup
The exterior walls of Ha Long Villa were manufactured using rough exposed concrete that resembles the tones and textures of the stone found in Ha Long Bay

Style & Aesthetics – Double skin façade

Ha Long Villa is comprised of a polygonal structure within a pentagon that establishes layers to be filled with greenery, resulting in a surrounding forest and an impressive indoor-outdoor experience. The layers of interior and semi-exterior spaces offer occupants protection from the hot climate and help to reduce sound pollution.

The double skin façade features large windows that provide city views from various angles. The spatial sequence between the internal and external walls allow abundant greenery for a rich natural feature. From the exterior, the Ha Long Villa blends beautifully into the natural landscape.

Ha Long Villa - facade overview

With dozens of trees planted on each floor level, Ha Long Villa’s green area was increased

One of the main features of Ha Long Villa is how VTN Architects increased the amount of nature and greenery on this site, while also creating a contemporary architectural design. Not only did the living space multiply by building upwards, but nature also multiplied. 

Ha Long Villa - interior livingroom
VTN Architects created a contemporary architectural design by integrating greenery resulting in not only the living space multiplying by also nature

Design memento – House for trees

Ha Long Villa is part of a series of “House for Trees” which are various residential new build properties that aim to increase the number of green spaces in the city. This project also aims to improve the quality of life within the city by improving connections to the outdoor environment.

Ha Long Villa - view of the top
The spatial sequence between the internal and external walls of the Ha Long Villa allows abundant greenery for a rich natural feature

The writer’s comment – Reconnecting to nature

Across the world architectural design is beginning to appreciate how humans need to rekindle the connection to the natural environment, and this is evident not only in this project but many architectural designs by VTN Architects. 

The idea of House for Trees can be repeated in almost any tropical climate region to help buildings harmonize with the natural landscape.

If you want to know more about architectural designs that integrate nature, don’t miss The Rainbow Tree in Cebu City by Vincent Callebaut Architectures.

Ha Long Villa - at night
The shadows highlight the strong concrete façade of the Ha Long Villa and provide an ever-changing aesthetic