100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi

A family in Hanoi has relocates their 100-year-old home to the roof of their villa, cited from VnExpress' Vietnamese version.
June 15, 2021 | 11:47
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100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi
The old house was moved from the ground to the fourth floor of the newly built villa. Photo provided by the owner

Building a new villa in Lien Mac ward, Bac Tu Liem district, but Quynh Lien does not want to abandon the 100-year-old house - where many generations of the family used to live.

"This old house is more than 100 years old and is a place to keep many family memories from the life of grandparents, parents, children, grandchildren. Therefore, my husband and I want to preserve traditional values, and at the same time change it to better suit the family's need," Quynh Lien shared about her family's old house with three compartments and two wings.

Lien does not know exactly what year the old house was built. The old house is about 100 square meters, located on more than 500 square meters of land. This used to be the place where Lien's family used to live for many years.

100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi
The total process of moving, restoring, and erecting the old house took about 8 months at the cost of one billion VND.
100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi

In 2020, due to the increased demand of living space of six members, the couple decided to build a five-storey villa and bring the old house up in the rooftop.

In order to relocate the old house, Lien's family first asked a team of skilled woodworkers to study and memorize the details and components carefully. After that, they dismantled all tiles, trusses and walls and brought them back to Quoc Oai craft village to check and find replacement for broken pieces.

After having enough materials, the house was erected exactly as the prototype and added details to complete.

When the owner was satisfied with the result, the house was disassembled and brought back to the construction site, hoisted to the fourth floor and erected.

"The most difficult thing is not to break or chip the wood patterns and restore it as close to the original," Lien shared.

The total process of moving, restoring and erecting the old house took about 8 months at a cost of VND 1 billion (USD 43.450).

100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi
A property that harmonizes Eastern and Western homestyles.
100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi
Villa with the old house is seen from a side.
100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi
In the process of relocating the old house, the owner also encountered objections.
100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi
The interior of the old house.
100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi
100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi
100-year-old house on the roof of a villa in Hanoi
In the yard, the owner plants many fruit trees such as jackfruit, guava, apple, star fruit and placed a feng shui pond.

Currently, the old house has a place where close relatives meet whenever the family gather in holiday or Tet (Lunar New Year) festival. It is also used as a display of religious sculptures and living space for Lien’s parents-in-law so that they can enjoy modern facilities while still being close to their children and grandchildren. They planted many fruit trees such as jackfruit, guava, apple, star fruit and placed a feng shui pond in the yard.

“Everyday, we come to the rooftop to exercise, tend the trees and flowers to relax,” Lien shared. “The old house is also our pride when combining traditional and modern.”

The other floors of the villa are also well designed. The first floor is a sculpture gallery, with an area displaying art creation such as painting, statue making, along with an aquarium and garden. The mezzanine floor displays paintings of Lien’s father-in-law, painter Nguyen Van Chu.

The second floor is the office block of a sculpture company owned by Lien and her husband. The third floor are a common living space with three bedrooms while the fifth floor has a gymnasium and technical room. The terrace is designed like a miniature park.

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