Spectacular Pools / A Spa Refuge: Hot Springs in Nha Trang, Vietnam - THE COOL POOL by Astralpool Australia

In southeast Vietnam, in the city of Nha Trang, the architecture team at a21 studio have just finished work on the facilities for a hot spring resort, which has a unique architectural touch. Located on a hillside, it stands out thanks to its unusual roof and the triangular layout of its indoor swimming pool. Its views of the river, near a bay considered by some to be one of the most beautiful in Southeast Asia, are spectacular. Just under 200m2, the site has been converted into a refuge where visitors can rest and disconnect from the stresses of everyday life by enjoying massages and mud baths.

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From afar, it looks very much like the country’s traditional houses with roofs made of plants, which is not surprising as it was built using local techniques. Cut off from the tourist area, the spa is closed off by a freestanding wooden structure. There are no exterior walls or facades. The roof of The Tent 2 rises up from the ground and protects the interior from the sun from the west. The central area is elevated to give fabulous views as far as the eye can see over the river and the city. The building’s shape means that guests benefit from natural ventilation.

Local wood and stone were used in the construction of this space, which is divided into two levels. The terrace, swimming pools and the showers can all be found on the ground floor. The central staircase leads to the upper floor, where a tearoom and the master bedroom with an en suite bathroom are located. Thanks to some coloured glass panels with frames made of reused wood, this is the only room that can be shut off from the Vietnamese climate outside. As an additional curiosity, there is a net just in front of this room that spreads across the lower floor so that when guests lie on it they have the sensation that they are floating on the surface of the swimming pool.