Regal residence

Of the myriad aspects of cultural heritage belonging to the Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1945), the residences in Hue are unique architectural works, expressing harmony between nature and people and where the hidden art of royal architecture in Hue is expressed.

Le Huy Hoang Hai on January 05,2018 09:58 AM

Entrance to Tuy Ly Vuong's residence, one of the most beautiful in Hue and undamaged

The residences were where the princes and princesses lived. Their décor is varied, with materials such as wood carvings, plaster, and terra-cotta mosaics used. After princes and princesses passed away, the residences became places of worship.

Each has its own name, based on the title of the owner. The entrance is a road that zig-zags between two rows of tea trees and palm trees, followed by screens to shield the house. The residences of princesses were often referred to by the title given by the emperor, such as An Thuong Princess, Ngoc Lam Princess, or Ngoc Son Princess. Meanwhile, those of princes (Vuong in Vietnamese) were named after the districts of the provinces where they were given by the emperor, such as Tung Thien, Tuy Ly, and Gia Hung.

The residences were the central venues spreading the lifestyle and culture of royal family to the people, contributing to the characteristics of the people of Hue, including the royals.

They were also where contemporary Hue artists converged; where poetry and music were created.

The residences represent a combination of architecture and scenery following the principle of ‘feng shui’. The main structure is a typical panel house of nha ruong with three compartments and two tiled roofs. Ruong means column, with each house having an altar room in the centre where guests were welcomed into the living space in the middle or east of the room.

Their architecture resembles a small Hue Citadel, with screens and water tanks replacing Ngu Mountain and the Huong (Perfume) River.

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