What is it

that makes

designing homes

such a special


What is it that makes designing homes such a special process?

Dark Horse Architecture

Architecture | Interior

H o m e s

Hanoi Riverside Villa

By its very nature, the thoughts, and discussions of creating a home are all windows into the lives, aspirations, and desires of the group of people who will ultimately call the outcome “their home”. It can be a very personal journey of conversations, or it can be a process of asking what ifs or trial and error to help the occupants to reveal themselves in a meaningful manner to create home.

It is a design process that often is a journey of discovery and adventure as both the occupant and designer build trust and care for each other. The designer often must help the occupants move beyond precedents and experiences to achieve a level of fit and comfort that surpasses the occupant’s original assumptions of what home can be.

Topaz Villa
Hanoi Riverside Villa

So, what makes a great home rather than just a house or home? A very challenging question to ask as it parallels other questions like what is family, how do I or we live, where do I work, how do I relax, what do I want in my life, how will my life develop over the coming years. These questions all have very personal answers and meaning to those involved and cannot be uniformly answered. The best way to approach these questions and others is rather than directly challenge and consult, but to start to discuss and bring about an unravelling of these many answers into a clear understanding of ‘this is what my home is’.

Hanoi Apartment
Hanoi Villa
Hanoi Riverside Villa
D2 Villa
Hanoi Villa

Over the first half of 2020, Darkhorse decided to draw breathe from our many frantically busy projects and deliberately take on a series of very different home projects. This is not a social experiment and we would never be so flippant to approach such serious and challenging projects as our driver, rather apply ourselves to an exploration of one of the most personal design processes where we would listen and design with our clients to create their ideal homes. The projects are all varied and complex and by no means exhaustive in their representation of the home type of project. We wanted to work with clients where the actual scope, scale, and budget of the projects were not key parameters. In two cases the home projects were already being built but the client was actually becoming increasingly stressed and upset with the process that they lost confidence and regretted decisions that they probably unknowingly agreed too much earlier in their projects design lives.