7×18 House / AHL architects associates

© Hung Dao

Architects: AHL architects associates
Location: Tứ Liên, Tây Hồ, ,
Architect In Charge: Hung Dao
Year: 2013
Photographs: Hung Dao

Bb Home / H&P Architects

© Doan Thanh Ha

Architects: H&P Architects
Location: , Hoan Kiem District, ,
Architect In Charge: Doan Thanh Ha, Tran Ngoc Phuong
Design Team: Chu Kim Thinh, Erimescu Patricia, Nguyen Van Manh, Nguyen Khanh Hoa, Nguyen Quynh Trang, Tran Quoc Thang, Pham Hong Son, Hoang Dinh Toan, Pham Quang Thang, Nguyen Hai Hue, Nguyen Khac Phuoc
Area: 44 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Doan Thanh Ha

Could Ho Chi Minh City’s Architecture Be Saved by Its Economic Rut?

by night. Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

In this article, originally published in Metropolis Magazine as “A Time-Out,” Carl Robinson reminisces about the architecture of the Ho Chi Minh City he remembers from the 1960s and discusses how the urban landscape has changed in subsequent years. As grapples with economic downturn, he asks, how might the city to develop? 

Over the past 15 years, as Vietnam finally left its long years of war behind, the former capital of South Vietnam—Saigon—became the country’s economic powerhouse. Until fairly recently, Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) was a boomtown. Even before touching down at its busy international airport, I see new buildings rising up through the sprawling and tightly packed suburbs, splayed across the city’s surrounding delta landscape and muddy meandering rivers.

Off in the distance along the wide Saigon River, where the spires of the city’s French Colonial Roman Catholic cathedral once dominated downtown, an impressive silhouette of high-rises reach to the tropical sky. The city’s twenty-first-century feel continues through its sweeping new terminal (designed by GWA) and then down a wide boulevard past contemporary office buildings and shops. Eventually I reach the intimate tree-lined streets of old Saigon, the residential quarter created by the French more than 150 years ago.

Kontum Indochine Wedding Hall / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: Vo Trong Nghia Architects
Location: province, Vietnam
Architect In Charge: , Takashi Niwa
Contractor: Truong Long JSC, Wind and Water House JSC
Area: 5,524 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki

In Progress: Farming Kindergarten / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: Vo Trong Nghia Architects
Location: Đồng Nai, Vietnam
Principal Architects: , Takashi Niwa, Masaaki Iwamoto
Project Team: Tran Thi Hang, Kuniko Onishi
CFD analysis: Environment Simulation Inc.
Area: 3,800 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki

Kontum Indochine Café / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: Vo Trong Nghia Architects
Location: Kontum,
Architect In Charge:
Contractor: Wind and Water House JSC, Truong Long JSC
Area: 551 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki

9 Spa / a21 studio

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: a21 studio
Location: ,
Area: 450 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki, Nam Phan, Courtesy of a21 studio

Nhabeo House / Trinhvieta-Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: Trinhvieta-Architects
Location: Hochiminh City,
Architect In Charge:
Structural Engineer: Nguyen Chi Tam
Interior Designer: Quach The Vinh
Area: 80 sqm
Year: 2009
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki

The Nest / a21studio

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: a21studio
Location: , Vietnam
Area: 40 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki

Ramen Bar Suzuki / 07BEACH

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: 07BEACH
Location: ,
Designer: Joe Chikamori
Area: 154.7 sqm
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki

House No47 / H&P Architects

© Nguyen Van Tho

Architects: H&P Architects
Location: Ha Tinh City,
Architect In Charge: Doan Thanh Ha & Tran Ngoc Phuong
Team: Nguyen Lam Tung, Le Huu Sang, Tran Huyen Trang, Nguyen Hai Hue, Nguyen Van Thinh
Contractor: HPA Viet nam jsc
Area: 370 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Nguyen Van Tho

Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport VIP Terminal Winning Proposal / CPG Consultants

Courtesy of

CPG Consultants recently won the Noi Bai International Airport VIP terminal design competition, which was organized by the Airports Corporation of Vietnam. Expected to be completed in late 2014, the lotus flower-inspired design with its iconic petal-shaped pavilion roof will extend a ceremonious welcome to Heads of State and dignitaries as they arrive or depart from . The new VIP Terminal will feature an octagonal geometry in plan, with the reception hall, state lounge and president lounges forming the centerpiece while the VIP lounges and function rooms form the angled part of the perimeter. More images and architects’ description after the break.

4.5×20 House / AHL architects associates

© Anh Duc Le

Architects: AHL architects associates
Location: , Vietnam
Architects In Charge: Hung Dao , Tuan Anh Mai, Son Chu, Hieu Hoang, Nghia Mai, Tung Nguyen, Truc Anh Nguyen
Area: 90.0 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Anh Duc Le

Trees Building for ABBANK Proposal / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

Courtesy of Architects

Designed by Vo Trong Nghia Architects the Trees Building, a branch bank of ABBANK, aims to create a co-existence of the rapid development and abundant nature of the seaside city. Located in , Vietnam, the office building uses a classical style with two-storey-height columns dating back to Alberti, which has been typically used for bank buildings all over the world to symbolize their authority and stability. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Bar 4P’s / 07BEACH

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: 07BEACH
Location: , Vietnam
Designer: Joe Chikamori
Area: 50.4 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki

Vo Trong Nghia named Vietnamese Architect of the Year

Stacking green / + Daisuke Sanuki + Shunri Nishizawa © Hiroyuki Oki

By popular vote on the architectural website Ashui.com, Vo Trong Nghia has been announced as ’s Architect of the Year 2012. The Quang Binh native was awarded over two other nominees after a four day public vote.

A graduate of Japan’s Nagoya Institute of Technology class of 2002, Vo Trong Nghia leads an award-wining, self-titled practice known for its intricate bamboo and sustainable structures.

View a selection of his work after the break.

Dai Lai Conference Hall / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: Vo Trong Nghia Architects
Location: Flamingo Dai Lai Resort, Vinh Phuc Province,
Architect In Charge: Vo Trong Nghia, Takashi Niwa
Contractor: Hong Hac Dai Lai JSC + Wind and Water House JSC
Area: 730 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki

Low Cost House / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

Architects: Vo Trong Nghia Architects
Location: Dongnai Hospital, Quyết Thắng, , Dong Nai province,
Architect In Charge: Vo Trong Nghia, Masaaki Iwamoto
Design Team: Kosuke Nishijima
Contractor: wNw House JSC
Client: wNw House JSC
Area: 40.5 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki