Architecture F&B Interiors Residential design

Nguyen Khai Architects and Associates renovates old, compact house into coffeeshop and residential unit with transparent glass wall

October 19, 2020

Located at the corner of a busy intersection in the centre of Hue city in cental Vietnam, Tiam is a coffeeshop-cum-residential property that is sited within an 18-year-old house. Nguyen Khai Architects & Associates renovated the dilapidated property that spans a gross built area of only 35m², and that serves as the living space for seven members of a three-generational family.

“Spending time talking and understanding the essential needs of the owner, we designed Tiam in a way to give a better standard of living along with valuable experiences for each and every member in the house. It has three floors, one attic, a balcony, and a terrace,” shares the principal architect and founder, Nguyen Quang Khai.

The first floor is for the café, which is run by the owner, and the rest of the building is for living. The vertical louvers and glass wall covering the house is like a vague partition between “in and out”, that brings people inside the house closer to nature and to other people in the streets.

The louvers not only help to reduce heat radiation but also creates a light effect and geometrical rhythm that enhance people’s emotions, both from inside and outside.

“The effective solution for such a limited built area is to design the interior as minimal as possible, and to create continuous and open spaces. We created functional zones and place objects in order to bring members in the family closer to each other, while still enabling them to have their private spaces if necessary,” Nguyen explains.

The old and ineffective spiral staircase has been replaced by the straight one, which helps to optimise spaces and achieve better circulation. Furniture in the house is mostly made of bamboo that is a sustainable and environment-friendly material. It owns some outstanding characteristics that are suitable for use in extreme climate in Hue.

The café on the first floor was designed with the same elements and materials as the rest of the house. Long curved tables, slim and transparent chairs placed in minimal and monochrome space so as to make all other colourful objects noticeable. Moreover, the appearance of people drinking and chatting in the café makes it a lively scene when viewed either from the inside or outside.

Plant pots of different sizes are found in every corner of the building. Plant pots on the louvers, balcony, terrace, and inside the house create a calm and pleasant atmosphere.

Watch the video on Tiam House by Nguyen Khai Architects and Associates

Project details

Architects: Nguyen Khai Architects & Associates
Area: 150 m²
Year: 2020
Manufacturers: American Standard, Carysil, Malloca
Architect-in-charge:Nguyen Quang Khai
Design team:Nguyen Quang Khai, Tran Yen Chau
Clients:Dao Ngoc Lan

See the full image gallery here:

Photos: Quang Dam

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