Rock Office is a unique structure that sits on a precarious piece of land in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Commissioned as an architecture and construction office with an included gallery, the building expresses a playful minimalism. The project’s use of simple materials like raw stone contributes a surprising element that looks extraordinary at a large scale. The exterior, while only a couple years old, has the presence of a much older building, like a modernist reconstructed ruin.
Designed by a21 Studio to meet unusual circumstances, the wall system serves to create a low-cost, potentially temporary building — the land lease will expire in less than ten years. The site’s soft ground also required a wide footprint. The gabion cages hold unprocessed stones which make up the curving wall system. Concrete bond beams at two elevations keep the structure rigid and transfer load evenly.
A series of daylighting windows set along the roof maintain interior ambiance without letting the hot sun in. The sparse interior emphasizes materiality and form. The winding walls create for two intimate courtyards while defining distinct spaces that still connect visually.