Certain architecture can help cool down your house in Ho Chi Minh City's scorching weather without, or less, turning on power-consuming air-conditioners. Certain architecture can help cool down your house in Ho Chi Minh City's scorching weather without, or less, turning on power-consuming air-conditioners. According to French architect Charles Gallavardin, natural ventilation and sun protection are among the major features of bioclimatic architecture, a type of architecture which can help to significantly reduce the need for air-conditioners. This architect's designs are based on studying the effects of climatic conditions on people, such as orienting homes in the direction of the main wind, blocking sun to prevent heat, and manipulating moisture. "The more people use air-conditioning, the more the climate becomes hot and the more they need air-conditioning," Gallavardin told Tuoi Tre News. One of his outstanding works, featured on CNN earlier this year, is the Lo Gom Condominium … [Read more...] about How to cool down your house in scorching Saigon without aircon?
Roofing your house
In a style of Da Lat in the Central Highlands, a restaurant in downtown Ho Chi Minh City serves grilled dishes that are cooked, not the normal way on a metal grill, but on a piece of ngói (clay roof tile). The name of the three-story restaurant, gotten from what it serves, is simply Ngoi. My latest foray there was to the rooftop grill, where my friends and I had a great time dining under the evening sky in the warmth from the stove and the cool air of the breeze. The only light came from three lamp posts standing between the two lines of wooden tables, just like the streets of Da Lat. The grilling choice was beef, pork, deer, octopus, chicken's innards, pig's bowel, or a few other animal bits, each cooked with a different mixture of spices. It was VND78,000 for a small serving and VND98,000 for a large one. Not wanting to fill ourselves to bursting, we decided on three small portions to share. Then came the best part. A piece of roof tile was put on the clay brazier, tilted … [Read more...] about Roof tile never tasted so good
Everyone gets more than they bargained for as volunteers from several countries contribute sweat and money to build houses for needy families in the Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang At 63, Nguyen Van Kheo has two major concerns: his health and his house. He says enteritis, muscle pains and other illnesses have forced him to undergo several surgeries, and made him dependant on medicines and acupuncture. They make him feel "weak," says the man, who is virtually on his own with no children and his wife living away. Meanwhile, the small house that he got from his mother some 20 years ago in Tien Giang Province's Cho Gao District has worn him out with its continuous needs for repairs, he says. Intended as a temporary shelter, the house has seen its wooden poles and beams begin to rot, and it leaks during the rainy season. With an income of just about US$30 a month, he can only afford cheap and non-durable materials for necessary repairs that he does by himself. So, … [Read more...] about A roof above their heads and a place in their hearts
Fame hasn't distracted architect Vo Trong Nghia from his goal of bringing sustainable designs to the world A design by a Vietnamese architect attempting to green the world with environmentally-friendly structures has been named a Building of the Year by ArchDaily, an architecture magazine in the US. The building is a house designed by Vo Trong Nghia and his Japanese partners that has been praised for saving energy with its use of natural ventilation and sunlight during the day. Last year the house was recognized as the best house at the World Architecture Festival in Singapore. It has also won many other awards earlier. Nghia himself has had a variety of awards and recognition under his belt. He was praised as one of ten most innovative worldwide architects by the US magazine Architectural Record last year. Meanwhile, his company, Vo Trong Nghia Architects, was listed one of the top 21 architectural firms of the 21st century that same year by World Architecture News. But … [Read more...] about Vietnamese architect greening world, one house at a time
Confronted with the noise, the pollution and the hectic pace of Ho Chi Minh City, weekend getaway locations like Mui Ne, Da Lat or the Phu Quoc Island become de facto choices for a romantic evening, a candle-lit dinner in secluded comfort. There are more and more romantic restaurants in HCMC … [Read more...] about At your leisure