Hoi An, the famous World Heritage Site is well-known for its unique blend of architectural influences including Vietnamese, Japanese, Chinese and western styles. However, few might be aware of the hidden green features of many buildings and spaces this former port has to offer, both traditional and contemporary. Below are three green architectural pieces that you can explore when you are in town.
- BAMBOO CREATION
Why are bamboo houses such a big deal in Vietnam?
Vietnam has been listed as the fourth country with the most variety of bamboos. It is the house of more than 200 different kinds of bamboos. According to Mr. Vo Tan Tan, founder of Taboo Bamboo Workshop (find them here!), bamboo is greener and surprisingly, stronger than steel if utilized correctly. The Taboo Bamboo Workshop is special because of its sustainable materials and its green design. There’s a fully functioning family house in the workshop which is mostly made out of precious bamboo. The house has a concrete foundation and base while the other half is made from bamboo with coconut leaves, while its roof is covered with many layers of to effectively block out sunlight and rain. Amazingly, the house is not only capable of providing a cooling temperature to the inner atmosphere, it can also withstand harsh winds and even storms. These advantageous features of bamboo houses make them a very desirable choice for people in the coastal areas, especially those in Vietnam where bamboos are plentiful.
- CAM THANH COMMUNITY HOUSE
This community house was built to boost local people’s spirit and love among each other, and more importantly, it was made in an ecological spirit. Most of it was made of bamboo and wood. There are several small gardens inside. Furthermore, the roof was designed in a way that directly let in sunlight This design maximize the amount of natural light in the building making it possible to not use any light bulbs during the day. Furthermore, there are numerous doors of different sizes and height along each side of the house so that Hoi An’s fresh air can flow in and out of the building, making it a cooler, breezier place to gather.
- TAN KY OLD HOUSE
After a tour around the famous house of Tan Ky, one can clearly distinguish the architectural influences from Chinese, Vietnamese and Japanese styles. It was built by using only tack, stone, wood, and brick. Although it does not have any window, the green building material makes the inner temperature fitting for living- cool in the summer, and warm in the winter. In the middle of the house, there is an open space with an old well, and some potted plants. This gives more space for air to circulate, and get freshened.
Intentionally or not, one might find a lot of environmentally sustainable aspects in many of the architecture in this old famous port town of Vietnam. Therefore, whether you’re coming back to Hoi An for a re-visit, or it is your first time here, you should definitely spend some time going to these places, and observe the green aspects of this beautiful town for yourself.
This post is an outcome from an assignment from Pandaradox for Young, Wild, and Living Green 2016. The adorable members of Pandaradox include Ms. Khanh Trang, Ms. Sesa Wulandari, Mr. Huy Nguyen, Ms. Sokcheng Seang, and Ms. Kanisa Atipas. All artwork is the property of Ms. Kanisa.