NDT-LTC HOUSE: Oozing the Charm of Raw Concrete and Lush Vertical Garden Façade

NDT-LTC HOUSE: Oozing the Charm of Raw Concrete and Lush Vertical Garden Façade

NDT-LTC HOUSE: Oozing the Charm of Raw Concrete and Lush Vertical Garden Façade

/ Bac Ninh, Vietnam /

/ Story: Phattaraphon / English version: Bob Pitakwong /

/ Photographs: Hoang Le /

Small space? No problem! Here’s a tall and slender concrete home built and furnished in a modern style. Plus, it transforms into a verdant oasis that’s beautiful and warm in a class of its own. Albeit small in size, the house boasts the relaxed interior ambience bedecked with houseplants thriving in containers scattered throughout. Nearby, the walls painted a cool-toned cream are lined with troughs where leafy exotics grow, creating an atmosphere for calm.

concrete home vietnam
The tall and slender concrete home rises amid shade trees in lush full bloom that provide indoor thermal comfort all year round.

Located in Bac Ninh, a city just an hour’s drive to the northeast of Hanoi, it’s a small family residence ingeniously devised to deal with space constraints and limitations. To make the most of the situation, the four-story concrete home occupies the full extent of an 80-square-meter plot. The elongated rectangle measures 4 meters wide and a whopping 20 meters long.

A street map shows the house location in relation to others in the community. / Courtesy of Kien Truc NDT

What makes the home stand out from the rest is its front façade adorned with shade trees and lush vines thriving luxuriantly, keeping the interior cool and comfortable. Walk in the door and you come to a living room with minimalist flair and a dining room in dark brown lying further inside.

One thing for sure, nature permeates through the entire home. Overall, the effect is impressive thanks to space design solutions created by a team of architects at the design studio Kien Truc NDT based right here in Bac Ninh.

Floor plans of the first and second levels / Courtesy of Kien Truc NDT
Floor plan of the third level (top), and a drawing of the roof plan (bottom) showing a garden (9) flanked by the stairway wall (7) and the skylight system with a rooftop deck (10-11) at the rear. / Courtesy of Kien Truc NDT
A side elevation view in cross section shows the rooms and functional spaces disposed around the interior courtyard with a stairway designed to improve ventilation and lighting. / Courtesy of Kien Truc NDT

The house’s external envelope boasts the simplicity of clean lines and geometric shapes with muted and earthy colors typical of modern style homes. Directly overhead, concrete beams spanning an opening at the top have an obvious rawness feel to them, creating a seamless blend with nearby shade trees in the front yard.

The principal face of the house itself is bedecked with climbing vines that provide added privacy plus freedom from noise and disturbance from the outside.

concrete home vietnam
Interior walls are covered in cement plaster painted a cool-toned cream that’s easy on the eye. They stand in contrast to the exteriors made of raw concrete and brick masonry, resulting in charm, good looks that blend with surrounding landscapes.
Illuminated by an overhead skylight, the stair chamber at the midpoint of the house plan separates the dining room in dark brown from the living room at the front.

According to the design team, by aligning the building with the sun’s path and prevailing wind direction, the house sits facing in the north direction that gets moderate amounts of sun, resulting in indoor thermal comfort even during summer months. This makes it possible to set up outdoor furniture anywhere under shade trees in the front yard.

The living room at the front of the house provides access to the dining room that lies furthest in.
concrete home vietnam
A set of stairs and surrounding areas lie illuminated by skylight systems built into the rooftop.
Skylight systems built into the rooftop provide enough light to keep indoor plants alive, creating a pleasant visual appearance.

On top of that, open-concept design admits natural daylight and fresh outdoor air into the home all day. This is achieved by positioning the building slightly toward the rear of the property, resulting in a win-win situation. The house becomes quieter and more secluded, while the front yard gains bigger space for rest and relaxation under shade trees.

A stairway painted white is built flush against the wall, rising above the foyer illuminated by skylights.
A view from the top shows the interior courtyard enlivened by natural daylight streaming in through a skylight in the rooftop that opens to admit fresh outdoor air into the home.
The bedroom with a view. A large door with transom windows opens to admit natural daylight and fresh air into the room.
The bedroom has en suite facilities enclosed by clear glass for uninterrupted visual continuity.

From a design perspective, the house plan has two parts to it, separated only by a well-lighted stair chamber occupying the in-between space.

To avoid the interior feeling stuffy typically occurring in row houses, the architects installed a skylight system in the rooftop to regulate the amounts of sun and fresh outdoor air streaming inside, turning the ordinary narrow lot home into a salubrious living space.

An overhead skylight illuminates the stair chamber separating the home office from a cozy reading nook at the far end.
A quiet, secluded reading nook benefits from natural daylight streaming in through a glass-glazed skylight in the rooftop.
The reading nook opens to a small garden with a set of stairs flush against the wall (left) leading to the rooftop deck.
concrete home vietnam
An outdoor room bedecked with lush exotics under raw concrete beams affords a vista of the city landscape.

concrete home vietnam

concrete home vietnam
A drone’s eye view shows a small garden oasis overlooking the street in front of the house.

To create rough textured walls, the home is built of structural concrete with exterior walls made of exposed brickwork that allows climbing vies to thrive. This contrasts with the indoor living space that’s covered with plaster and painted a cool-toned cream, an entirely different story.

concrete home vietnam
Serene surroundings in the semi-outdoor bathroom without a ceiling provide a salubrious atmosphere well-ventilated and well-lit by natural daylight.
concrete home vietnam
An outdoor room showcases the rawness of concrete beams and a garden oasis hemmed in by exposed brick walls, a beautiful sight that blurs the boundary between inside and outside.

In the big picture, it’s a beautiful concrete home made possible by dealing with space limitations in the most practical way. For the design team, because the land is long and very narrow, the only way to go is up and hence the tall and slender home bedecked with lush vegetation as you see it.

More importantly, it’s made for a green lifestyle that’s simple, power efficient and architecturally pleasing.

Architects: Kien Truc NDT (http://kientrucndt.com)

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