Hao (second from left) at the award ceremony (Photo: VNA)
  Singapore (VNA) – Vietnamese architect Hoang Thuc Hao has won a gold medal at the SIA-Getz Architecture Prize for Emergent Architecture in Asia 2016 for his design “happiness architecture”.

His designs include the Bhutan Happiness Centre, Lung Luong School in Thai Nguyen province, Suoi Re Communal House in the north-western province of Hoa Binh, Cam Thanh Communal House in Quang nam province and rural houses in Ha Giang.

They feature the culture of the localities and highlight unique local innovations.

SIA President Richard Ho said Hao’s designs bring happiness to marginalised communities, particularly those in the countryside or ethnic minorities.

Hao’s architecture goes beyond just building sustainability, said Ram Simkin, President of Getz Bros & Co. and also the awards’ co-organiser, adding that he also addresses cultural sustainability in his works, an aspect often neglected in developing countries.

The 45-year-old architect, a lecturer at the National University of Civil Engineering, has won several domestic and international architecture prizes including the “Architect of the Year” at the Ashui Awards in 2015, the World Architecture Festival in the Civic and Community – Completed Buildings category in 2015 and the International Architecture Awards in 2012.

The biennial SIA-Getz Architecture Prize for outstanding Asian architects was launched by the Singapore Institute of Architects and Getz Bros & Co. in 2005.

The prize aims to honour architects and their contribution to architecture in Asia while increasing public appreciation of Asian architecture.

To date, the award has drawn entries from 10 Asian countries and territories, namely China, Japan, India, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam, Pakistan, Taiwan and the Philippines.-VNA