Let the spirit of Hanoi help you find order in the chaos.
Legend has it that when Emperor Ly Thai To arrived with his convoy in the new capital of Vietnam, Dai La, a golden dragon rose next to his boat, so the emperor changed the city’s name to Thang Long, or “The Rising Dragon.” That was more than 10 centuries ago, and since then Thang Long has been renamed again, this time to Hanoi (Ha means "river" and noi "inner").
Vietnam’s capital has been through quite a lot over the past thousand years, including Chinese, Japanese, and French occupations, that mark the city’s landscape and culture to this day. The elegant Parisian-style buildings and tree-lined streets in the French Quarter will transport you to the Old Continent, while the pagodas and Buddhist temples in the Old Quarter strike a fascinating contrast. And even though most of the city’s narrow streets are bustling with motorbike traffic and people sitting on small chairs eating bowls of pho, there are still a few quiet places left where locals can be seen practicing Tai Chi early in the morning.
So if you have embarked on a home makeover adventure inspired by Vietnam’s capital, you’re in for a treat. While Hanoi has a diverse urban landscape, characterized by the many foreign influences, that doesn’t necessarily have to translate into a busy and over-the-top interior décor aesthetic—quite the contrary.
Creating a zen space and finding order in the chaos is part of the spirit of Hanoi. For proof, look no further than Hoan Kiem Lake, located in the heart of the restless city and a favorite of Hanoi residents seeking to get away from the noise.
So opt for minimalist design and sleek furniture pieces made from natural materials. Bamboo is used for pretty much everything in Vietnam, from building houses to making chopsticks, dinner plates, and furniture, so don’t be afraid to incorporate it in your design strategy. Organic cotton and Vietnamese silk are used to make beautiful décor accessories such as lanterns, pillow covers, or wall art.
Earthy and neutral colors such as gray-blues, brown, beige, and soft yellow are easy on the eyes and invoke nature. You can spice things up a little with unexpected pops of color by opting for a vase or a decorative item in a vibrant shade.
Here we rounded up home décor items that will bring Hanoi’s unique character to your home.