El hotel museo que ha revolucionado Vietnam. Información sobre "La Casa Loca", obra de la arquitecta vietnamita Dang Viet Nga, admiradora de Gaudí y el surrealismo.
Puede usar las teclas derecha/izquierda para votar el artículo.Votación:1 estrella2 estrellas3 estrellas4 estrellas5 estrellas (1 votos, promedio: 5.00 sobre 5)
LoadingLoading...

World

“The Crazy House” of the Vietnamese architect Dang Viet Nga

Da Lat, Vietnam.- An eclectic mix of fantasy, fairy-tale magic and surrealism come together in the southern Vietnamese city of Da Lat’s so-called “Crazy House,” a baffling building that was designed by the daughter of a Communist bigwig with a self-professed admiration for Spanish modernist architect Antoni Gaudi.

Inspired by the shape of a large Banyan tree – also known as a strangler fig – the complex is filled with phantasmagoric grottoes, elaborate bridges, metallic spider webs, mysterious mushrooms and depictions of all sorts of animals.

The framed words of the house’s designer, Dang Viet Nga, greet visitors at the entrance: “With the voice of architecture I want to guide men to return to Nature, stay in touch with it and love it.”

Nga, 79, still lives in a section within “The Crazy House”, where visitors catch a glimpse of her from time to time.

“She is old now and doesn’t go out much and is tired of giving interviews, but some days she comes out for a walk around the gardens,” said one of the ticket vendors working at the site.

Nga is the daughter of former Vietnamese president Truong Chinh (who died in 1988) and openly flaunts her admiration for Gaudi, considered one of the world’s most influential architects during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

She studied in Moscow, where she earned a PhD in architecture in 1968. Her lineage presaged a lifestyle in accordance with Communist orthodoxy, but she soon proved to be rebellious and moved to Da Lat, an old resort town far removed from the power centers of Hanoi she had known since childhood.

 

A style against the classic

In one of her texts, Nga explained that she sought to break away from the normative style that was prevalent at the time by creating curved volumes and free structures that did not depend on the classical (Communist) aesthetic ideals of organizing masses through straight lines and square planes.

During the 1980s, this deviation from the norm led to the demolition of some of her creations for straying too far from Communist paradigms, but “The Crazy House” – originally named “Hang Nga” in honor of the Chinese goddess of the Moon – was saved thanks to the intervention one of her father’s old comrades.

Some more conservative architects criticize her to this day, as they believe her creation is a stain on a city known as Vietnam’s “Little Paris” due to the dozens of colonial-era mansions that were built in the early 20th century under French rule.

“No architect would do something like this, but she was able to because she was a princess at that time, the daughter of the Communist Party’s secretary-general,” Tran Cong Hoan, Professor of Architecture at Da Lat’s Yersin University, told EFE.

“It attracts people because it’s different. I don’t think it’s true that it’s influenced by Gaudi, it is more inspired by nature,” he added.

The desire to imitate nature is expressed in the curved forms that define the building, although this effect is somewhat mitigated by the omnipresence of cement, with some unpainted walls that still reveal metal beams which tend to disrupt the place’s fairy-tale feel.

 

Animal-themed tourist attraction

The misgivings of some locals have not affected the house’s popularity with tourists – it receives an average of 1,500 daily visitors – most of them foreigners who are attracted by reviews describing it as one of the planet’s most extravagant buildings.

“I’m very excited about visiting the crazy house. It’s a little scary and it also reminds me of ‘The Hobbit’ and the movies we’d watch as kids,” said Ye Chan, a young Canadian tourist.

Those who are most enthusiastic about the building can stay in one of its 10 available rooms. Each has an animal theme that, according to Nga, is adapted to the taste of each nationality: the tiger room is for the Chinese, the eagle room is for visitors from the United States, the kangaroo theme is for Australians and the bear is geared toward Russians.

The price to spend the night in this fantasy setting ranges between $44-$144, depending on the room’s size and its perks. Most online reviews are positive, although some complain about having to share the space with daytime visitors.

The most obvious drawback is the constant noise caused by perennial construction works, although Nga insists they are necessary due to the organic nature of her creations, which she says will continue to evolve and grow for as long as she lives. (May 20th, 2019, EFE/Fototeca). 

Related news (18/05/2019)


Comprehension

Lee la noticia y responde a las preguntas (Read the news and answer the questions)

Congratulations - you have completed Lee la noticia y responde a las preguntas (Read the news and answer the questions). You scored %%SCORE%% out of %%TOTAL%%. Your performance has been rated as %%RATING%%
Your answers are highlighted below.
Question 1
Principalmente, el texto habla de... (Mainly in the text, it's talked about...)
A
Un museo diseñado por Gaudí en Vietnam.
B
Un hotel museo que mezcla fantasía y surrealismo en Vietnam.
C
Un museo de arte contemporáneo en Vietnam.
Question 2
Según el texto, la arquitecta Dang Viet Nga proviene de una familia... (According to the text, the architect Dang Viet Nga comes from a family...)
A
No tiene familia.
B
Distinguida.
C
Pobre.
Question 3
Según la arquitecta, su objetivo es... (According to the arquitect, her goal is...)
A
Romper con lo establecido a través de estructuras libres.
B
Prolongar la tradición arquitectónica lineal.
C
Imitar a Gaudí.
Question 4
Su obra ha sido criticada por... (Her work has been criticized by...)
A
Arquitectos conservadores.
B
Críticos de arte.
C
Diseñadores.
Question 5
Cada habitación representa... (Each room represents...)
A
Una novela.
B
Un animal.
C
Un sentimiento.
Once you are finished, click the button below. Any items you have not completed will be marked incorrect. Get Results
There are 5 questions to complete.

Vocabulary

Congratulations - you have completed . You scored %%SCORE%% out of %%TOTAL%%. Your performance has been rated as %%RATING%%
Your answers are highlighted below.
Question 1
En este contexto, el sustantivo gerifalte se refiere a... (In this context, the noun gerifalte refers to...)
A
Un jeque árabe.
B
Un soldado.
C
Un jefe o una autoridad.
Question 2
Un sinónimo del adjetivo alambicado es... (A synonym of the adjective alambicado is...)
A
Complicado.
B
Simple.
C
Fantasioso.
Question 3
El cemento es... (The cemento is...)
A
Un ingrediente culinario.
B
Un material de construcción.
C
Un utensilio doméstico.
Question 4
Un antónimo del adjetivo extravagante es... (An antonym of the adjective extravagante is...)
A
Complejo.
B
Ordinario.
C
Rebuscado.
Question 5
La palabra entusiasta es... (The word entusiasta is...)
A
Un adverbio.
B
Un sustantivo.
C
Un adjetivo.
Once you are finished, click the button below. Any items you have not completed will be marked incorrect. Get Results
There are 5 questions to complete.

Noticias al azar

Multimedia news of Agencia EFE to improve your Spanish. More than 6,000 news with text, video, audio and comprehension and vocabulary exercises.