Architects all over the world are discovering biophilic design and incorporating it into their buildings.
Historically plants and greenery were the discipline of landscapers and interior designers, but more and more architects are incorporating greenery into the framework of their structures.
The reasons for this are many, amongst them are that biophilic design provides both physical and mental wellbeing benefits such as improve stress levels, cleaner air, regulating our circadian rhythm and reducing blood pressure. As urban spaces develop and cities become larger and more densely populated, architects and designers are having to think of new ways to incorporate nature into our lives and workspaces. By incorporating plants and nature into architectural spaces this helps to offset the disappearing green spaces and the green spaces that are already overused.
An excellent example of this can be seen in Vietnam. Vietnamese Architects and designers are experiencing a boom in Biophilic design and are developing new links with nature through incorporating plant life and elements of nature into projects of all sizes and dimensions.
Here is my selection of the top 5 biophilic designs in Vietnam.
Let’s start with the An’garden Café by Le House, Hanoi
Designed by architect firm, An’garden Cafe was inspired by the hanging gardens of Babylon. What began as a former industrial site, this cafe is now home to plants, vines, trees, koi pools, and is an abundance of nature light and space.
The interior of An’garden is formed from steel frames and bare bricks filled with lush greenery including trees that sprout from the concrete floor. Adding intrigue and the experience of a jungle floor, there is a hidden koi pond that is discretely located behind the blackened steel staircase. This space is three stories high and features a timber – slated roof that overlaps with a massive glass façade allowing natural light to shine through this open space. There are also extensive timber planters suspended from the roof stocked with lush tropical vines, creating a canopy of green.
The Hut by 23o5 Studio, Ho Chi Minh City
This amazing design by, broke boundaries, by bringing the outdoors into the bedroom via a garden and breaking up its concrete interiors with splashes of greenery. They have managed to blur the barriers between the inside and outside through using iron shelves that separate both the back garden and living area. Also, when constructing this home, they have incorporated openings into the roof to allow for natural light to filter down onto the plant- filled spaces below.
Tropical Forest Caféand Plant Store by Tayone Design Studio, Hanoi
This beautiful space was turned into a tropical oasis of plant life in the heart of the bustling city of Hanoi. The Tropical Forest Café reduces pollution and sells succulents to the local community. This design by Tayone Design Studio, created a real-life tropical forest based in the heart of the city which provides fresh clean air to help drive out the dust and pollution.
The roof of the café is formed from pitched wood and glass to emulate the formation of a greenhouse, whilst helping to filter out pollution in the space below. Plant climbers reach along the walls while vines flow down from the ceiling, creating a lush botanical effect.
Hoi An Hotel by Vo Trong Nghia Architects, Hoi An
Flowing greenery covers the sides of the Hoi An Hotel, that has concrete planters concealed within the structure of the sandstone walls. The plants offer two purposes, the first one is providing shading for the corridors from the sun and the second one is it allow guest to have that extra privacy behind a natural forest curtain.
Binh House by Vo Trong Nghia Architects, Ho Chi Minh City
This design is part of ‘House for Trees’series. The aim for this series was to be able to return greenery to cities. The concrete box structure that forms this home has plants emerging from every available space. Its infinite gardens connect the homes with multi-generation inhabitants while improving the wellbeing of the people who are fortunate enough to live here; also, residents gather fresh produce for the kitchen that growns in the gardens.