Vietnamese bamboo complex wins top Asian architecture award

Thanh Nien News

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Architect Vo Trong Nghia's bamboo complex won him the top prize from Asia's top architectural authority on Thursday, a week after a UK magazine honored him for his House for Trees in Ho Chi Minh City.
Vo Trong Nghia Architects, a company co-founded by the namesake architect and his European and Japanese partners, received the most recent award from the Architects’ Regional Council Asia (ARCASIA) in Malaysia.
The company’s Dailai Bamboo Complex won the gold medal in hotel and resort category and the award's top honor “Building of the Year” the first time for a Vietnamese project. The awards’ other categories include residential projects, public amenity buildings, industrial buildings, conservation project and social responsible architecture.
Dailai complex comprises the celebrated Bamboo Wing restaurant and Dai Lai conference house at the namesake resort in Vinh Phuc Province--50 kilometers from Hanoi.
The Bamboo Wing was honored as one of the top five constructions at the World Architecture Festival in Barcelona in 2008.
The conference house was designed by Nghia and Japanese architect Takashi Niwa and added in 2012.
Nghia’s House for Trees, which includes five separate prismatic blocks with a tree planted on the top of each one, beat hundreds of other buildings to take the £10,000 (US$17,000) prize given annually by the UK’s Architectural Review.
His Binh Thanh House in Ho Chi Minh City’s namesake district was named one of the world’s best five new private houses by the British magazine, Wallpaper, early this year due to its profusion of open areas, natural light and a mix of concrete and green space.
But the native of the north-central province of Quang Binh first became known for bamboo-centric structures including the open-air Hill Restaurant in Mexico and the Eco-resort Pavilion and wNw Café and Bar in Binh Duong Province--which neighbors HCMC.
He said many of his designs were inspired by his childhood and tend to be open-air constructions surrounded by water.
The award-winning green buildings helped his company win a place on a list of the top 21 architectural firms of the 21st century prepared by World Architecture News (WAN) in 2012.
The bamboo complex win his third gold medal from the ARCASIA awards, which received 276 submissions from across the region this year.
Three other Vietnamese projects joined the list of 32 winners this year: the 9 Spa, a complex of nine stone cabins beneath a single thatched roof in a hotel resort in Nha Trang, a 40-sqm steel house titled The Nest in Binh Duong Province neighboring Ho Chi Minh City (both designed by Nguyen Hoa Hiep), and the Ta Phin Community House designed by Hoang Thuc Hao in Sa Pa.

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