Vo Trong Nghia plants fruit trees on the roof of a house in Vietnam
Recycled water from a ground-floor fish pond is used to nourish fruit trees on the roof of a house in Danang City, Vietnam, by Vo Trong Nghia Architects.
Formed from brick and stone boxes stacked around a green courtyard, Thang House is the latest in the practice's House for Trees series.
Vo Trong Nghia Architects designed these homes to bring nature into dense urban environments.
"Thang House pledges to contribute in the greening of the urban landscape and the improving of the habitat by providing sustainable and environmentally friendly architecture," said the studio.
Intended to be self-sufficient, solar panels provide energy for the home while an automatic water recycling system circulates water between the fish pond and the planted areas.
In plan, the house is two parallel strips on a small urban plot, one containing the living spaces and the other containing a garden enclosed by a high, planted wall.
The green wall extends upwards to the roof garden, which contains nine planted boxes.
"The green area lost due to construction work was compensated by a fruit garden on the rooftop that gets sunlight and shelters the building," said the studio.
Openings and balconies in the living areas face out onto the site's green spaces and its small fish pond.
These areas of outdoor space are for "bringing natural light, fresh air and the aroma of grass and flowers into every single corner of the house," said the practice.
Four boxes house the living spaces – one large volume with three smaller projecting units that contain bedrooms.
These are raised over the garden below on thin concrete columns.
Narrow slits in the concrete roofs of these boxes bring in light.
Windows provide views between rooms and out to the garden, and large sliding doors allow interior spaces to spill out onto the balconies.
With circulation routes that pass through this mix of interior and exterior spaces, different elements of the home have been given varied material finishes.
"While the big box is covered in grey stone for a deep and charming feel to the common spaces, the small ones are covered by white brick to bring and enlightening and warming feeling to the living spaces," said the practice.
Interior finishes also create a continuity between interior and exterior spaces.
Thang House's concrete floors and exposed stone walls contrast with furniture made from dark wood.
Previous projects in the House for Trees series include Ha House, which features a series of gardens across different levels, and Breathing House with a facade shaded by climbing plants.
Photography is by Hiroyuki Oki.
Design credit: Vo Trong Nghia Architects (VTN Architects)
Principal architects: Vo Trong Nghia
Architects: Kosuke Nishijima, Le Phuong Uyen