Lush green roof camouflages the Chameleon Villa into the Indonesian tropics

July 16, 2018 by  
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True to its name, the Chameleon Villa is a residence that seamlessly blends into its forested surroundings in Bali thanks to its integration of a lush green roof. Designed by international architecture practice Word of Mouth House , the contemporary home spans nearly 11,000 square feet, yet deftly hides its bulk with landscaped roofs. The “camouflaged” roofs also help promote natural cooling and are integrated with rainwater collection and recycling systems as well as solar panels. Located in the village of Buwit in southwest Bali, the Chameleon Villa is set on an acre of densely forested land with steep and challenging terrain, including a level change of 36 feet. To blend the building into the site as much as possible, the designers at Word of Mouth House crafted the home as a cluster of volumes that step down the slope and are carefully positioned to follow the original contour lines and to optimize views of the river below and forest beyond. A natural materials palette  — with locally sourced elements like teak wood, iron wood and natural stone — further blends the dwelling into the landscape. Related: Beautiful bamboo pavilion in Bali translates the flexibility of yoga into architecture “We worked on the idea of ‘landscaped architecture’ by blurring the boundaries between natural and built environments,” explained the firm. “As a result, the buildings appear to be a part of the land itself sometimes disappearing within it, and then at other times, emerging from it. As per traditional Balinese architecture the different pavilions accommodate different functions and all communal spaces are kept open towards the elements whereas the bedrooms and other more private spaces such as office, gym and media room are close-able volumes.” The vibrant green roofs keep the lower spaces comfortable through passive cooling, and this vegetation also aids in rainwater collection. The residents can recycle the water for use in garden irrigation. The home also produces clean energy through solar panels, further adding to its sustainable features. + Word of Mouth House Images by Daniel Koh

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Lush green roof camouflages the Chameleon Villa into the Indonesian tropics

Glass elements dramatically open up a solar-powered Sydney home

July 16, 2018 by  
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In Sydney’s affluent suburb of Kirribilli, a contemporary solar-powered home stands out from its Victorian manor neighbors. Local design practice Bijl Architecture reworked an existing semi-detached home into the Doorzien House, a two-story home that takes full advantage of its sweeping Sydney harbor views. In addition to floor-to-ceiling glazing installed in the rear of the house, glass elements are used throughout the home — in the form of skylights, flooring, highlight panels and balustrades — to fill the interior with light. The clients tapped Bijl Architecture to design a home that pursued a modern typology. To satisfy the project brief and comply with local heritage expectations, the architects restored and preserved the home’s traditional street-facing facade while inserting a contemporary zinc -clad addition to the rear side of the house that draws inspiration from the neighborhood’s naval and industrial history. The back of the property is opened up to the outdoors and overlooks views of Careening Cove, Neutral Harbor and Kurraba Point. “To embrace our clients’ desired openness and connectivity between the floor levels and surrounding context, we dismantled the existing plan,” the architects explained. “The broad Sydney Harbor view and neighboring vistas are exploited by the hybridized living spaces, while each room retains its individual focus and remains intimate and warm through the material palette and layered lighting. We oriented living spaces to the rear; multiple interior viewlines serve as a counterpoint to the expansive harbor views. This approach continues to the rear garden, with bleacher-style steps moderating the level change, extending the study and sitting room interiors to form a third living space.” Related: This self-sustaining Australian home harvests its own food, energy, and water A 3.5kW system of Nu-Lok solar roof tiles was the first approved installation for a NSW conservation area. The solar system and Redback Technologies’ Gen II inverter and battery are part of the clients’ plan to eventually move their home off-grid . + Bijl Architecture Images by Katherine Lu

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Glass elements dramatically open up a solar-powered Sydney home

"Garbage emergency" declared in Bali as clean-up unfolds

December 28, 2017 by  
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The Indonesian island of Bali recently declared a “garbage emergency” in response to the overwhelming amount of plastic waste that has floated ashore and spoiled pristine beaches. “When I want to swim, it is not really nice. I see a lot of garbage here every day, every time,” said Vanessa Moonshine, a traveler from Australia told 24Matins . Although places in Indonesia have been described as “paradise on earth,” the nation of more than 17,000 islands has some work to do to reclaim its title and is mobilizing clean-up efforts to do so. Indonesia is the world’s second largest contributor to marine debris, outdone only by China , the most populous country in the world. In addition to degrading the beaches , plastic waste blocks waterways, impacting transportation and increasing flooding risk, while posing a risk to marine animals. The waste issue has become so debilitating that Bali officially declared a “garbage emergency” over a 3.7 mile segment of coastline last month, prompting the mobilization of resources. 700 cleaners with 35 trucks removed 100 tons of debris each day from the area, which includes the popular beaches of Jimbaran, Kuta and Seminyak. Related: Indonesia pledges $1 billion annually to tackle ocean pollution problem While economic concerns may have motivated this particular cleanup, the dangers of plastic waste are more insidious than loss of tourism. “Garbage is aesthetically disturbing to tourists, but plastic waste issue is way more serious,” I Gede Hendrawan, an environmental oceanography researcher from Bali’s Udayana University, told AFP . “Microplastics can contaminate fish which, if eaten by humans, could cause health problems including cancer.” Fortunately, Indonesia is taking action. The nation of 261 million has pledged to reduce marine plastic waste by 70 percent by 2025, in part by boosting recycling programs and reducing plastic bag usage. Local inventors have even created a type of biodegradable plastic made from seaweed , an abundant crop in Indonesia. Via 24Matins Images via Depositphotos (1)

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"Garbage emergency" declared in Bali as clean-up unfolds

INTERVIEW: Bamboo builder, and Ibuku founder Elora Hardy on creating incredible buildings with bamboo

February 22, 2017 by  
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We’ve showcased numerous bamboo designs over the years, from furniture to entire buildings, but when it comes to combining green building and renewable materials, Ibuku’s incredible bent-bamboo buildings take the cake. The Bali-based bamboo building team already has luxury villas, houses, schools and infrastructure buildings in their portfolio, and is renowned for their dedication to using traditional Indonesian building techniques . We spoke with the firm’s founder and CEO, designer Elora Hardy, about vernacular architecture traditions, her involvement with designing bamboo buildings , and the reasons behind her vocational change from high-end fashion to sustainable architecture Photo by Rio Helmi INHABITAT: Before founding Ibuku, you had a successful career in fashion. What prompted this change in direction? Elora: I visited Green School just as construction was completing in 2010, and it blew my mind. My father and step-mother (John and Cynthia Hardy) founded the Green School and built every structure on campus out of the most sustainable material they could find: bamboo. I felt the need to be involved in a sustainable industry and I realized this was it. Having grown up in Bali, I had already had a taste of the creative possibilities of working with natural materials and skilled local craftsmen, and so the temptation to get involved with what was going on at home was strong enough to coax me away from both fashion and NYC. Photo by Rio Helmi INHABITAT: Can you describe the dynamic of your design and construction process? Elora: We spend time on the land, and with the people who will be using it. We sketch a bit, and make simple real-scale mockups on the site. Once the placements are clear, we make 1:50 scale structural models out of bamboo . This is where the art—and engineering—happen. Our bamboo builders follow this model (not blueprints) to build the structure of the house. There are over 100 people involved in construction, with an average of 20 onsite at one time. No heavy machinery, no cranes, no bulldozers. Walls are woven onsite, and craftsmen whittle bamboo pins to pin splits of bamboo skin onto the floor one by one. These are truly hand-made homes. Photo by Tim Street Porter INHABITAT: Bamboo is known as the quintessential rapidly renewable building material. What are its characteristics in terms of fire resistance, strength, and lifespan? Elora: ?Bamboo is a truly sustainable unrivalled timber, with the compressive strength of concrete and the tensile strength of steel. The kind of timber we use, Petung (or Dendorocalaus asper ) ?can have as much as? 18 meters of useable length. It’s lightweight , hollow, round, curving, and tapering. It’s also flexible, making it ?ideal for earthquakes, as it will bend and flex long before it breaks. There are 1450 species of Bamboo in the world, and my team uses 7 of them. It grows on most continents on Earth, and we harvest ours from groves deep in the ravines of Bali and Java—from between 1 hour and 1 day’s drive away. It grows on land that’s not useful for agriculture and thrives on rain or spring water. In an established clump, each shoot emerges from the ground full at diameter, growing up to 1m per day.  3-4? year?s? later, it’s dense and mature and ready for harvest. Photo by Rio Helmi INHABITAT: One of the major concerns when it comes to building with bamboo is its susceptibility to insect damage. You have developed a new treatment method which tackles this issue—can you tell us how it works, and what your experiences with it have been so far? Elora:  In the past, the powder post beetle succeeded in eating just about every bamboo object ever made. Bamboo is a member of the grass family, and its sap is sweet. If you succeed in replacing those sugars with salts, the beetle can’t eat it. We treat our bamboo with a natural Boron salt solution, which permanently protects it? from insect attack. The treatment is the key to what we do: without it, bamboo cannot be considered a permanent building material. Linda Garlad founded  Bamboo Central , the Environmental Bamboo Foundation in Bali, innovating and promoting bamboo treatment methods and opening up the possibilities for bamboo as a sustainable timber. She inspired us to build with bamboo and gave us the confidence to build long-lasting structures, and that has been the key to what we’ve been able to build. Photo by Tim Street Porter INHABITAT: Your buildings rely on passive sustainability. How often do you incorporate active sustainable systems such as photovoltaics or rainwater harvesting? Elora: We recently designed a solar field and battery house at Green School for the solar system that Akuo energy donated to the school. Our focus is on bamboo, on expanding our capabilities and expertise with this material, but as new technologies are designed and become available, and as we connect with other sustainability experts in other fields, we collaborate with them and integrate their systems in to our designs. INHABITAT: How does Ibuku’s practice affect local Balinese communities? Elora: Most of our craftsmen are descended from wood-carving and farming families from surrounding villages here in Bali. They say if they weren’t working here with us, they would likely be carving handicrafts from wood, or perhaps working in the tourist industry as security guards or waiters. I’m proud to have created an opportunity for these skilled craftsmen to continue their trade and broaden their expertise. How we build with bamboo gives the world a glimpse into the artistic value of Balinese culture, beyond the tropical island destination reputation. Photo by Agung Dwi INHABITAT: Ibuku’s bamboo designs span different typologies. You’ve built houses, schools , bridges, auditoriums and even a car park. How do you see the applicability of bamboo evolving in the future? Elora: Bamboo has extreme versatility. If you follow the basic rules, and innovate with complementary technologies and materials, the possibilities worldwide are endless. Most of our buildings to date have been into the land they were built on; they are designed for Bali.  Often they are designed from the point of view of bamboo, utilizing its strength and protecting its vulnerabilities. I’m excited to see how other designers will interpret bamboo for the rest of the world; in structures and beyond. INHABITAT: Bamboo is used as a building material in tropical countries where it can be harvested locally, but in Asia it’s mostly used for scaffolding. Do you see it becoming a major building material beyond Bali and Indonesia? Elora:  Bamboo is ideal for tropical construction, but I’m sure it will also have application in structures in other climates, likely used in combination with other appropriate materials for those regions. I imagine bamboo structural towers within structures enclosed by rammed-earth walls , with insulated roofing material. Photo by Rio Helmi INHABITAT: Our readers are familiar with several of Ibuku’s projects, namely the Green Village and the Green School. What are you working on at the moment? Elora: We have two new homes in process at Green Village , as well as an extraordinary private home in nearby Ubud that has a kids’ house with a climbing wall and slide. We just completed several additions at Green School , and our gardening team built them a Peace Garden. On an island neighboring Bali, we are designing a school for local kids. We have a yoga pavilion design in process, and just completing a riverside spa with a bamboo basket pod suspended over the river. + Ibuku + Green Village + Green School Photo by Rio Helmi Photo by Rio Helmi Images by  Rio Helmi , Agung Dwi,  Tim Street-Porter / OTTO  

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INTERVIEW: Bamboo builder, and Ibuku founder Elora Hardy on creating incredible buildings with bamboo

7 international permaculture retreats for relaxing and learning

November 10, 2016 by  
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The Yoga Forest, Guatemala Perhaps a tropical breeze through a morning yoga session is more your speed. Located in the western highlands of Guatemala , the Yoga Forest in San Marcos la Laguna boasts beautiful views of Lake Atitlán and three surrounding volcanoes. Vegetarian meals sourced from the site’s food forest are served to guests who participate in yoga, permaculture courses, hiking and relaxing by day and rest in a loft, cabin or tent by night. Paititi Institute, Peru The Paititi Institute  in Peru  best serves those who are seeking high altitudes and would like to practice their Spanish. In the Mapacho Valley, near the Manu National Reserve in the Andes, the Paititi Institute maintains a 4,000 acre sanctuary which harnesses the landscape’s varied elevation to grow a diversity of crops. Tropical foods such as mangos, plaintains and yuca are grown at the base of the mountains, while temperate crops such as greens, apples, and pears thrive at higher elevation. At the peaks are potatoes and quinoa, ancient crops of the Andes. Guests assist with the maintenance of the farm, which offers a course on shamanic permaculture. Jiwa Damai, Bali In the tropical rainforest of Bali , adventurous soul seekers may find peace and enlightenment at Jiwa Damai , hands-on, socially responsible organic garden and retreat center. Guests are invited to enjoy a spacious lounge and dining space, a permaculture garden, fresh water ponds and pools as they explore the tranquil grounds. Jiwa Damai offers permaculture courses, meditation sessions, and various seminars and workshops on self development. All income from Jiwa Damai is distributed to the community through programs and projects from the Lagu Dumai Foundation. Honaunau Farm, Hawaii On the Big Island in the 50th State , Honanuanu Farm aspires to demonstrate a regenerative living model through its practices as a wellness retreat. Below Mauna Loa Volcano with breathtaking views of Kealakekua Bay and Honaunau Place of Refuge, Honoanuanu offers courses in permaculture design, animal husbandry, fruit tree care, yoga and Qigong, and medicinal plants. Students stay in tents on site, though there are more luxurious lodging options. Honoanuanu also offers therapeutic massage and wellness services. La Loma Viva, Spain In the village of Gualchos, Spain, near Granada and the Mediterranean coast, La Loma Viva offers permaculture education and peaceful exploration at its retreat center, where most guests are lodged. Meals, bedding and hot showers are provided, as well as organic soaps. Vegetarian meals, prepared as a community and sourced from the permaculture garden, are served in the communal dining area. On the patio and throughout the landscape, guests can revel in the gorgeous Mediterranean scenery of the coastline and local mountain ranges. Earthships, New Mexico If you are simply looking to relax in an environmentally sound, serene home, look no further than the Earthships  of New Mexico . Built to last with recycled materials and permaculture-like systems designed for maximum self sufficiency, Earthships are fully furnished homes with modern amenities located in the desert landscape of Taos, New Mexico. Nightly rentals of Earthships was named one of Lonely Planet’s top ten eco-stays in 2014  and offers relaxation in the ultimate green getaway for two or a group of friends. Center of Unity Schweibenalp, Switzerland If you crave crisp mountain air, the Center of Unity Schweibenalp may satisfy. The Center features a 20 hectare farm, the largest alpine permaculture projects in Switzerland . Permaculture students may take courses on site, where perennial plants are grown in a nursery for later transplanting outdoors, where edible plants cover the landscape. Most of the mushrooms, fruit, and vegetables gathered from the farm is used by the community and seminar house kitchen, available to guests at Center of Unity. Images via  Flickr   (2) , Scott Hudson ,  Nicolás Boullosa , Kai Lehmann , La Loma Viva , the Yoga Forest

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INTERVIEW: Bamboo builder, and Ibuku Founder Elora Hardy on Creating Incredible Green Buildings with Bamboo

December 31, 2014 by  
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We’ve showcased numerous bamboo designs over the years, from furniture to entire buildings, but when it comes to combining green building and renewable materials, Ibuku’s incredible bent-bamboo buildings take the cake. The Bali-based bamboo building team already has luxury villas, houses, schools and infrastructure buildings in their portfolio, and is renowned for their dedication to using traditional Indonesian building techniques . We spoke with the firm’s founder and CEO, designer Elora Hardy, about vernacular architecture traditions, her involvement with designing bamboo buildings , and the reasons behind her vocational change from high-end fashion to sustainable architecture Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Read the rest of INTERVIEW: Bamboo builder, and Ibuku Founder Elora Hardy on Creating Incredible Green Buildings with Bamboo Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “sustainable architecture” , Bali , Bali architecture , Bali bamboo , Balinese , Balinese bamboo , bamboo , bamboo architecture , bamboo building , bamboo design , bamboo green school , bamboo villas , Elora , Elora Hardy , green school , Hardy Green School , Ibuku bamboo , Ibuku interview , renewable building material , renewable material , sustainable bamboo , sustainable building material

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INTERVIEW: Bamboo builder, and Ibuku Founder Elora Hardy on Creating Incredible Green Buildings with Bamboo

Explore This Incredible Green Village in Bali Made Entirely From Bamboo

September 26, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of Explore This Incredible Green Village in Bali Made Entirely From Bamboo Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “sustainable architecture” , Bali , balinese home , bamboo , bamboo building , bamboo construction , bamboo homes , eco design , green architecture , Green Building , green design , green materials , green school , Green Village , Ibuku , sustaianble building , sustaianble design

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Explore This Incredible Green Village in Bali Made Entirely From Bamboo

Lorenzo Martone Designs Lush “Invisible Bike” as an Emblem for Eco-Conscious Lifestyles

September 26, 2014 by  
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Designer and cycling enthusiast Lorenzo Martone designed “Invisible Bike,” a moss- and foliage-covered bicycle that when placed against a lush outdoor background, appears to disappear into the green expanse. Inspired by the growing movement towards sustainable lifestyles, the installation is constructed from a Martone Cycling Co. green aluminum alloy men’s bicycle covered by five different types of moss and synthetic leaves. The otherwise all-green bicycle is accented by the brand’s signature red chain. The “Invisible Bike” went on auction at the Brazil Foundation Gala at the Lincoln Center last week. + Martone Cycling Co. The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: aluminum alloy , bicycles , brazil foundation gala , foliage-covered bicycle , invisible bike , lorenzo martone , Martone Cycling Co , moss-covered bicycle , reader submitted content

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Lorenzo Martone Designs Lush “Invisible Bike” as an Emblem for Eco-Conscious Lifestyles

Why Your House Might Be Plotting to Kill You

September 26, 2014 by  
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If you live in a house built before 1978, there’s a good chance it’s secretly plotting to kill you. According to a recent survey , Homes built before this time were commonly coated in lead-based paint that becomes extremely harmful to your health as soon as it’s disturbed in any way – potentially leading to lead poisoning . And while you might think that a call to your local contractor or visit to your local hardware store might help you learn how to do these renovations safely, think again. Read the rest of Why Your House Might Be Plotting to Kill You Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: angie’s , Angie’s List , contractor , epa , green renovation , Hardware , homes built before 1978 , house , lead , lead paint , list , paint , painter , poison , rpp

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Why Your House Might Be Plotting to Kill You

6 Reasons Everyone Should Have One of These Awesome $15 Solar d.light Lanterns

September 26, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of 6 Reasons Everyone Should Have One of These Awesome $15 Solar d.light Lanterns Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 6 reasons to love the d.light , cheap solar , cheap solar lantern , clean tech , d.light design , d.light lantern , d.light solar lantern , d.light solar light , diy cargo van , green design , LED lights , living out of a van , social entrepreneurship , Solar Power , solar-powered led lantern , solar-powered led light , sustainable design , tafline laylin

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