International Competition_1 Prize Architecture: Matej Mejak, Katja Aljaž Year: 2012
The idyllic island of Maldives is a tropical paradise. It represents a place for relaxation. The look on blue lagoons, tropical vegetation and coral reefs gives the feeling of escapism. The main goal of architecture is to include as many of these elements as possible.Rising water level and small amount of land makes the islands of Maldives very precious. The idea was to preserve and extend existing island. The chosen site is situated on uninhabited small island Dhekenanfaru – on Noonu Atoll. Architecture is based on a simple module , which transforms from house to pathway. Individual villas are designed and oriented for maximum exposure to the panoramic views of the sea and the horizon, to give the visitor a strong connection with the surroundings. Indoor and outdoor spaces blend as terraces, canopies, bridges and passages and interlacing through the resort.Together they assemble unique urbanism – the pattern reminds of coral reefs. Small islands includes houses with panoramic views, shaded pathways, tropical gardens and pools. The resort is composed from 72 residential villas, wellness, fitness, bars, restaurant, diving centre and staff houses. All houses are set onwater, which gives the visitor a unique experience of living on the ocean while the staff apartments and other services are set on the island. The communications between the islands are established with boats. The architectural language combines contemporary lines and detailing with traditional materials. Shading is provided by bamboo panels. They are movable so that they can ensure the view or the privacy of the visitor.All villas and infrastructure are self- sustained. Solar panels on roofs uses sun energy for electricity. In rain season the water is collected from roofs and stored in water thanks. The island has its own desalinization plant, treated waste water is used for irrigation.