Can Gio Pavilion

350 m²

Can Gio HCMC Vietnam


Can Gio Biosphere Reserve
Can Gio forest stretches over 75,740 ha land, which gather about 150 plant species.
Close to Ho Chi Minh City (60 km), this area is also considered as the green lung of the city with its typical mangroves possessing a variety of unique and rare species.
A bird wings-shaped building
Can Gio Restaurant is designed like a pair of bird wings spreading across the Can Gio Mangrove Forest located in the South of Ho Chi Minh City (the natural space has been classified as one of the International Biosphere Reserves by UNESCO in 2000).
The wings forming a V shape frame up the view to the far horizon where the sun rises.
A natural mineral stone platform leveling up the base emphasizes this clear angle of view towards the mangrove horizon and the view to the appealing circular green lake in the front.
The project is located in a touristic and populated area.
The project designed as an opened public space, protected from the typical sunlight and heavy rains of the region by two V-shaped roofs. These large roofs function as a picture frame capturing all the beautiful surrounding landscape.
This sophisticated design adapts perfectly to the program desired by the Investor. The purpose is to create a welcoming area to receive visitors and a multi-functional space to organize various kinds of events: Conference and seminar meetings, temporary restaurant equipped with professional kitchen facilities, events functions for large groups and seasonal exhibitions.
The main facilities of the venue are:
- Two dining rooms equipped with air conditioning.
- A large kitchen with storage and chilled room.
- Sanitary areas.
This model complements to the tourist planning which usually consisted of just hotels, resorts equipped with swimming pool, townhouses and villas, to offer an opportunity to go relaxing out of HCM city on the weekends.
The project must be able to cope with:
- The strong sun that whitens everything around
- Heavy rains and thunderstorms coming from the East Sea
- The dry wind
The color of the project is inspired from typical local sand color and mangrove trees roots.
The project uses also light gray color similar to the silt which highlights the saturated green vegetation of the mangrove.

Phuoc Loc Company

Design team

DE-SO Asia

Construction cost

Full design


The roofs
The metal roofs (lozenge), like a pair of bird wings soaring up on the lagoon and sheltering the terraces.
These metal-framed roofs are covered on the underside with a folded and perforated metal sheet which lets light filtering inside. At night, the lights coming from everywhere decorate these perforated metal (25%) mesh ceiling.
The base
Using the monolithic laterite stones to build the base in order to lift up the ground floor level and establish an architectural order so as to well anchor the house into the sandy and silty site.
Ramps and stairs lead the way up to terrace.
A central tree with ethereal foliage (Termilia Mantaly) brings shade and freshness to the terrace.
The four buildings (pentagon) and the base are made of concrete covered with gray laterite stone. They are unitary.
This laterite is also used in massive stones of 10cm thickness to create the lattice wall for closed and air-conditioned dining rooms.
At night the lattice plays as a Vietnamese lantern diffusing the saturated color on the walls of the interior spaces.
A particular site
The very strong sea winds at Can Gio (Typhoons) have been taken into account in the dimensioning of the cantilever beam.
In hot season the air is suffocating, hence there is a necessity to create shades and freshness.
Indeed, the presence of the round lake of water and the high-levelled base make it possible to capture any refreshing breezes.
The inertia of the thick mineral walls brings freshness to the closed rooms.

Constructing a building in the harsh tropical climate like the Can Gio region is a technical and ecological challenge, the pavilions are built with local Vietnamese materials and with the minimum of composite materials.
The construction elements are elements of small sizes assembled.
Can Gio is a peninsula accessible by ferry, it is difficult to deliver materials by boat and deliveries are always limited to small quantities.
It’s about being strong, durable, withstanding heavy rain, the hot vertical sun, and skillfully taking advantage of the chill wind coming from the east sea.

The construction materials used are matt, only the glazed elements and the black and green ceramic pots imported from Bin Duong bring reflections. (Recalls of Mekong jars storing water or Nuoc mam). A garden composed of tamarins surrounds the project.
Designed in 2018, the project was delivered in 2019.
DE-SO Asia
Domitille Perrault, Tran MinhTuyen, Pham Linh Da
Martin Jaillais : Paysagiste
And RFR VN (Structural and M&E engineers)

History of the project:
The DE-SO agency was contacted in 2010 to complete a master plan thought by Mr. Phuoc Loc, to design different types of terraced houses, a Resort and to complete the master plan of the project on 52 hectares in Can Gio.
The owner built the townhouses with another architectural firm as well as a 14-room hotel with a bar and tennis court.
In 2016, investors (Nguyen Thuy Duong and Luong Viet Han contacted Olivier Souquet again and took up the landscaping project with the DE-SO Asia agency. They discussed in 2017 the concept of creating a central space fulfilling several reception functions (A first canvas building created in 2011 was blown away by the strong winds).
In 2018 the agency studies the pavilions which to be built in 2019 by the owner who himself directed the works and provided to owner the guideline for the landscape.
In 2019, the agency designed 29 luxury villas, a 60-room units Resort, the reception houses of the Resort which is opened towards the mangrove (incl. Restaurant, SPA, complementary building for the swimming pool).
The large swimming pool of 600 m² is built in 2019 and filled with water.
The reception houses are expected to be constructed in short time, so as the central SPA.



The harsh climate of Can Gio requires the use of robust natural materials.
The choice is to avoid to have superimposition of materials and layers, but to feel the material is important.
The base and foundations are made of concrete, the pavilions are made of massive laterite brick. The metal structure and the large overhang were made of metal frame. The windows behind the stone moucharabiehs are made of aluminum and the entrance doors to the rooms are made of exotic hardwood. The roof covering initially in zinc is a clear lacquered metal tray.
The use of natural materials such as laterite skate and take on the color of the environment. Their color is not dazzling in the sun

Video of the project