The restoration and upgrading of the 100-year-old Huynh Phu mansion in the southern province of Ben Tre has started, with work to cost an estimated 35.5 billion VND (1.7 million USD).

The stone house in Thanh Phu district's Phu Khanh commune, was built by Huynh Ngoc Khiem (1843-1927), who settled in Ben Tre in the mid-1880s.

Construction of the 500sq.m house began in 1905 and was completed in 1918. Supported by 48 wooden pillars and 32 brick pillars, the three-room house is decorated in the typical patterns and motifs of the Mekong Delta.

The structure was recognised as a national historic site by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism in 2011.

The provincial culture department has also begun to restore the 966sq.m tomb complex of Khiem and his family, which is located 3km from the house. The complex was built in 1911.

The restoration work is slated for completion in the middle of next year.-VNA