Termitary House
Tropical Space
Da Nang, Vietnam

The design of the Termitary House draws inspiration from termites’ ability to build their nests and addresses the extreme climate of Da Nang, a central Vietnamese coastal city.

The house is built mainly with the region’s traditional baked brick, the same material used in erecting the famous Champa towers from the 4th to the 15th century. The brick helps to keep indoor temperatures at bay during warm seasons, and to keep humidity stable. Perforated walls serve to let daylight and breezes into the home and all the way to the least accessible corners. In the communal spaces the perforations enable the residents to see and talk to one another at all times, in pursuance of the termitarium concept. As the day progresses, the bricks take on different red tones, but at night the house becomes a giant lantern. All furniture is designed using the timber of the old roof, reducing costs.

At ground level, a large, double-height central space encompasses the shared zones while giving access to the rest of the domestic spaces. Stairs lead to the next floor, where more partitions organize the more private area of the residence. An attic has been added on the roof and surrounded with climbing vines, creating a relaxing atmosphere for the whole family to enjoy.

The toilets and storage rooms are arranged in a way that blocks out strong winds during stormy seasons and redirects them towards the roof through holes. In the same vein, the walls are a double skin: brick on the outside and glass-aluminum frames inside, with an air chamber in between that serves as a buffer.

Outside, some of the plants of the old garden have been conserved in order to preserve some familiar features, repositioned on gravel pavements.

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