Continue the Terrazzo Story in Vietnam

Terrazzo is making a huge comeback and becoming one of the hottest design trends for homes and commercial spaces. In Vietnam, terrazzo has a long and storied

author avatar Picasso Terrazzo , Ba Ria - Vung Tau, Viet Nam.

Bài viết này có ngôn ngữ Tiếng Việt.

Terrazzo is making a huge comeback and becoming one of the hottest design trends for homes and commercial spaces. In Vietnam, terrazzo has a long and storied history. For centuries, the striking stone and cement floors have been used in pagodas, royal palaces, and French colonial buildings. But in recent years, terrazzo has been rediscovered by designers and homeowners attracted to its durable yet stylish nature. With new techniques allowing for more intricate designs and patterns, as well as a wider range of colors, terrazzo is being used in creative new ways. From countertops to accent walls, terrazzo can add visual interest to any space. The terrazzo trend is here to stay in Vietnam, and it’s time for you to make this classic material a part of your next design project.

The History and Revival of Terrazzo Tiles in Vietnam

Terrazzo tiles have a long history in Vietnam, dating back to the 15th century. Originally made from marble chips and clay, terrazzo tiles were used in pagodas, temples and other important buildings.

In the early 20th century, terrazzo tiles gained mainstream popularity and were used in many homes, public buildings, and French colonial structures. However, by the mid-20th century, terrazzo tiles fell out of favor and were rarely used in new construction.

Classic terrazzo tile samples used in old building floors and pavement in Vietnam. 

Thankfully, in recent years terrazzo tiles have experienced a revival in Vietnam. Architects and designers have rediscovered the beauty and durability of terrazzo. Terrazzo tiles are now commonly used in hotels, restaurants, and homes, valued for their unique patterns and eco-friendly nature.

A combination of terrazzo designs from Red River and Mekong Series. Photo credits: PICASSO.

The traditional technique of hand-pouring and polishing terrazzo tiles is still used today. Crushed marble, granite, glass or other aggregates are mixed with cement and pigments for color. The mixture is poured onto a surface, spread, and polished until smooth. Skilled workers are able to create complex patterns and designs.
With a variety of aggregates and dyes available, the design possibilities for terrazzo tiles are endless. Terrazzo also has the benefit of lasting for decades with little maintenance required. For these reasons, terrazzo tiles will likely remain popular in Vietnam for years to come. Their rich history and custom craftsmanship make them a source of national pride.

Sustainable Terrazzo: Using Low-Carbon and Recycled Materials

The future of terrazzo lies in sustainability. By using recycled and low-carbon materials, terrazzo can have a smaller environmental footprint.

Recycled Aggregates

Instead of using only virgin aggregates like marble chips, incorporate recycled glass, porcelain, and concrete. These recycled aggregates reduce waste and the need for raw materials. Many tile makers now offer recycled content options with up to 95% recycled materials.

‘Aggregates sourced from locally quarried marbles and high-grade sands in the north of Vietnam, reducing transportation costs and emissions. All offcuts from the manufacturing process are repurposed into aggregates for paving and tarmac in local cities, further promoting a circular economy’. Video credits: PICASSO.

Alternative Binders

Rather than traditional epoxy or cement binders which require toxic chemicals, use alternative eco-friendly binders made from plant-based oils and resins or limestone. These natural binders are non-toxic, low-VOC, and renewable. Some are even carbon negative, actually absorbing more carbon than they produce.

Local and Sustainable Sourcing

Choose terrazzo aggregates, chips and binders that are sourced locally and sustainably. Locally-sourced materials reduce the carbon emissions from transport and support local communities. Sustainable sourcing means materials are extracted and manufactured in an environmentally-friendly way.

By combining recycled aggregates, alternative binders, and sustainable sourcing, terrazzo can transform into an eco-friendly flooring option. Specifying these sustainable terrazzo options for your next project helps reduce waste, cut carbon, and create a healthier environment for all. Together, we can make sustainability the new standard for terrazzo.

PICASSO TERRAZZO tile production includes no resin, no silica, no epoxies, no plastic; only real concrete, which results in 40% less cement versus current market. Video credits: PICASSO.

Terrazzo in Modern Vietnamese Architecture and Design

Terrazzo tiles have been used in Vietnam for centuries and continue to be featured prominently in modern architecture and design.

Public and Commercial Spaces

Terrazzo can be found in many public buildings and commercial spaces in Vietnam’s cities. Its durability and low maintenance make it an ideal choice for high-traffic areas. Terrazzo tiles are commonly used in lobbies, courtyards, and walkways. The colorful chips and aggregates in the terrazzo often reflect the building’s style or purpose. For example, schools may incorporate terrazzo with chips in the colors of their logo or mascot.

Offices, restaurants, and retail stores frequently use terrazzo flooring for an upscale yet hardwearing look. Terrazzo is also popular for staircases, countertops, tabletops, and other surfaces in commercial spaces. Its natural non-slip texture provides traction and safety.

Table tops and wall cladding using PICASSO TERRAZZO products. Photo credits: Renkon Restaurant.

Interior details using PICASSO TERRAZZO products. Photo credits: Café Marcel.

Residential Homes

Terrazzo is gaining popularity in upscale homes and apartments in Vietnam. Its timeless style and customization options appeal to homeowners and interior designers. Terrazzo floors, stairs, patios, and countertops provide an elegant focal point. Aggregates and dyes in warm, earthy tones are common for residential installations.

Whether in a centuries-old pagoda or a modern skyscraper, terrazzo continues to be an integral part of Vietnam’s architectural heritage and a desired design choice for new construction. Its beauty, durability, and cultural significance ensure that terrazzo tiles will remain popular in Vietnam for generations to come.

Floor details by PICASSO TERRAZZO. Architects: studio anettai. Photo credits: Hiroyuki Oki.

Interiors and wall cladding by PICASSO TERRAZZO. Architects: studio anettai. Photo credits: Hiroyuki Oki.

Terrazzo has such a rich history and cultural significance in Vietnam, it’s exciting to see the new life being breathed into this art form. Maybe after reading this, you’ll gain a new appreciation for terrazzo and start noticing the subtle details and artistry the next time you walk across a terrazzo floor. Or maybe you’ll be inspired to travel to Vietnam and see some of these stunning terrazzo creations in person. However it resonates with you, help spread the word about the terrazzo renaissance happening in Vietnam. The more people that know, the more opportunities there will be to continue the terrazzo story.