Sandwiched between residential buildings in the Binh Thanh district of Ho Chi Minh City, this monastery-inspired home brings tranquility and peace to a Buddhist family. Vietnamese studio H.A Architecture designed the house using concrete, brick, timber and light.
The 839-square-feet Zen House is a “tube house” typical of Vietnamese cities. Designed to provide a private, peaceful place amidst the crowded city streets, it is organized around a central atrium located beneath a glass ceiling flanked by wooden louvers. Broken up into several volumes, the project functions as a city-within-a-house, allowing natural light to penetrate rooms on all four floors. Concrete dominates the interior and creates a monastery-like atmosphere marked by simplicity.
“The owners are all Buddhists looking forward to having a place of peace and tranquility, completely free from the hustle and bustle of the city,”said the architects. “This is not simply a house, it is a monastery,” they added, “a place where there is no limit in work, where you can either travel or stand in one place.”
The main living spaces are located on the ground floor, with the kitchen at the front, and the dining area and lounge beneath the skylight. A steel-framed staircase is located at the rear, leading to the two bedrooms and a room for worship upstairs. See-through balustrades frame the staircase and the corridor, creating visual connections between different floors.
Photos by Quang Tran