Zaha Hadid-designed Morpheus Hotel with worlds first high-rise exoskeleton opens in Macau

June 15, 2018 by  
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Macau has officially opened the doors to Morpheus, a sculptural, 40-story luxury hotel that also boasts the “world’s first” high-rise exoskeleton—a curvaceous lattice-like covering that gives the building its iconic appearance. Designed by Zaha Hadid Architects , the sleek and sinuous structure serves as the new flagship hotel for the City of Dreams resort. The $1.1-billion architectural icon is one of the last projects that architect Zaha Hadid worked on before her untimely death. Morpheus Hotel is the latest addition to Macau’s City of Dreams, an integrated resort that includes a casino , two theaters, a shopping district, 20 restaurants and four hotels on the Cotai Strip. Taking inspiration from China’s rich traditions of jade carving, the architects crafted Morpheus with flowing curves that define the exterior and interior design. “Conceived as a vertical extrusion of its rectangular footprint, a series of voids is carved through its centre to create an urban window connecting the hotel’s interior communal spaces with the city and generating the sculptural forms that define the hotel’s public spaces,” wrote Zaha Hadid Architects in a statement. The Morpheus’ exoskeleton wraps around a pair of towers and a central atrium that soars to a height of 35 meters, while its ground level is connected to the City of Dreams resort’s surrounding three-story podium. A series of sky bridges traverse the atrium, while twelve glass elevators offer spectacular views of the hotel’s interior and exterior. The hotel houses 770 guest rooms, suites and sky villas as well as civic spaces, meeting and event facilities, game rooms, three restaurants, a spa and rooftop pool, and back-of-house areas and ancillary facilities. Related: Zaha Hadid Unveils Plans for “City of Dreams” Hotel Tower in Macau The use of an exoskeleton allowed for the creation of expansive interiors uninterrupted by supporting walls or columns. “Morpheus combines its optimal arrangement with structural integrity and sculptural form,” adds Viviana Muscettola, ZHA’s project director. “The design is intriguing as it makes no reference to traditional architectural typologies.” + Zaha Hadid Architects Images by Virgile Simon Bertrand

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Zaha Hadid-designed Morpheus Hotel with worlds first high-rise exoskeleton opens in Macau

Massive eco-resort with a theme park to rise on Vietnams beaches

February 12, 2018 by  
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The Vietnamese government has given the green light to Mui Dinh Ecopark, a massive eco-resort expected to become one of Asia’s largest hospitality and leisure developments. Designed by architecture firm Chapman Taylor’s Bangkok studio, the mega-project will span 1,800 acres and comprise seven hotels for a total of 7,000 rooms in addition to a theme park, 500 villas, casino, beach club, and mountain clubhouse. The project is envisioned as a “sustainable destination.” Set on southern Vietnam’s beautiful white sandy shores in Mui Dinh, the enormous eco-resort will take inspiration from the local area’s rich history while paying careful attention to the environment. Little has been revealed on how the massive development plans to reduce its environmental footprint, but the renderings provide some clues: the buildings appear to take cues from the local vernacular with thatched roofs and natural materials rather that concrete construction. The visuals also show an idyllic verdant setting thick with trees while the larger buildings take the form of rounded mountains. Related: Outstanding eco-friendly resort in China is made with recycled and locally-sourced materials “Set on a beautiful site on the east coast of Vietnam, Mui Dinh Ecopark is designed to reflect the key elements of the surrounding environment – sand, sea, salt and sun,” wrote the architects. “Intended as an unrivalled hospitality-led mixed-use development in Asia , the development is inspired by the rich local history of Mui Dinh, particularly that of the Cham tribal culture and architecture as well as the lost world of the last dynasty.” + Chapman Taylor Via ArchDaily Images via Chapman Taylor

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Massive eco-resort with a theme park to rise on Vietnams beaches

David Chipperfield Architects reveal designs for Hamburgs tallest tower

February 12, 2018 by  
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Hot on the heels of Herzog & de Meuron’s recently completed Elbphilharmonie , David Chipperfield Architects has revealed designs for the German city’s next big architecture project: Elbtower. Towering above the skyline at 230 meters (755 feet), the sculptural mixed-use building will be the tallest building in the city and serve as a counterpoint to Elbphilharmonie to the west. David Chipperfield Architects’ designs for Elbtower won an international design competition that sought a building that was modern yet also captured the historic and unique character of the riverfront location. Its sculptural form features a long multi-level podium that then curves upwards to form a 230-meter-tall tower with tapered edges. The podium will comprise a bar, hotel, restaurant, retail, and exhibition areas. The building will also enjoy easy access to the train and underground station as well as a bicycle bridge. Related: Herzog & de Meuron’s Elbphilharmonie Plaza is the highest public square in northern Germany “We are delighted to have won the competition for the Elbtower project together with SIGNA and are happy to be invited to work in Hamburg again, especially on such an important site,” said David Chipperfield. “As architects we are increasingly aware that the city depends on the quality of projects from the private sector to create a strong civic dimension that engages with the complexities of the city. We look forward to positively embracing this responsibility with the Elbtower project.” The Elbtower will be sheathed in a specially designed glass facade equipped with lighting technology—designed by by Studio Other Spaces in collaboration with Olafur Eliasson and Sebastian Behmann—that will transform the building into a “kinetic sculpture” at night. + David Chipperfield Architects Via ArchDaily Images via David Chipperfield Architects

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David Chipperfield Architects reveal designs for Hamburgs tallest tower

This incredible floating hotel can take you on the voyage of a lifetime in Japan

February 2, 2018 by  
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Guntû is a gorgeous floating hotel that takes passengers on a whirlwind tour of Japan ‘s Seto inland sea. The vessel was designed by Japanese architect Yasushi Horibe , and it includes all the amenities of a luxury cruise ship while upping the ante with a distinctly Japanese experience. Guntû has a total of 19 two-person guest rooms, each outfitted with private terraces that offer unobstructed views of the surrounding sea and shores. You can kick back and relax on the rooftop deck , while common areas like the Grand Suite create a vibrant environment for socialization. Wood dominates the design of the hotel –from the interior of the common areas and private rooms, to the cocktail bars and balcony tubs. Related: This floating hotel and spa in Sweden will fill you with wanderlust Guests can book stays up to three nights, but it isn’t cheap – rates start at 400,000 yen ($3,668 US) per night for two guests. This arrangement includes all meals and on-board services. The floating hotel starts its journey in Onomichi City and allows guests to explore coastal Japan while selecting from a variety of on-shore activities. + Guntû + Yasushi Horibe Architect & Associates Via Apartment Therapy

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This incredible floating hotel can take you on the voyage of a lifetime in Japan

Architects use local materials to turn an abandoned resort in Beijing into a remarkable hotel

December 20, 2017 by  
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An abandoneded resort in  Beijing has been transformed into a gorgeous luxury hotel that highlights the surrounding natural scenery. SYN Architects amplified the sensation of “natural wilderness” at The Creek Park Hotel using locally-sourced natural materials such as firewood, pebble stone and wood. The hotel is located in Beijing’s Pinggu District, just over 9 miles away from the Jinhai Lake International Resort. It replaces an abandoned resort estate, expanding and rebuilding the property into a high-end luxury destination surrounded by stunning natural scenery. Related: Vertical forest Mountain Hotel will clean the air in Guizhou, China The architects created an extensive 360° panoramic view effect in order to immerse visitors into the landscape. They inserted open rectangular terraces of different sizes with mountain-like features in between original structures, with a panoramic restaurant and a scenic glass platform delivering a unique atmosphere. The roof, structurally independent for other volumes, allows sunlight to come in through. Related: World’s first MUJI hotels to open in China and Japan Vertical arrangements of wood surround the terrace to strengthen the feeling of “natural wilderness”. The use of natural materials helped reduce construction costs and deliver the appearance that mimics the look of traditional Chinese landscape paintings. + SYN Architects

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Architects use local materials to turn an abandoned resort in Beijing into a remarkable hotel

Boston just officially banned single-use plastic bags

December 20, 2017 by  
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Boston just became Massachusetts’ 60th town to pass a ban on plastic bags . Mayor Martin Walsh recently signed the measure, which will go into effect next December – and a statewide ban is pending before the legislature. 357 million single-use plastic bags will be used in Boston this year, according to Metro . Councilor Matt O’Malley, lead sponsor of the measure, said 20 tons of plastic bags are tossed into Boston’s single-stream recycling every single month – and workers must spend hours every day extracting bags from equipment. Related: Kenya introduces world’s harshest law on plastic bags That’s to say nothing of the environmental impact of plastic bags. O’Malley told Metro, “Plastic bags are only used for an average of 12 minutes, but their impact on the city’s streets and drains is permanent. They end up in streets, storm gutters, trees, and tangled in our wildlife and marine ecosystem .” These environmental arguments helped sway the mayor, who said he signed it for benefits such as cutting down litter . When the ban takes effect, shoppers will need to pay five cents for aarger paper bags or thicker, compostable plastic bags – or use reusable bags . Stores will collect the money to help offset the cost of the bags, which are more expensive. But not everyone is happy with the plastic bag ban. Critics of the measure said it was basically a tax on the poor. Local Deborah Branting told the Boston Globe she’s been stockpiling plastic bags, describing the ban as “an unnecessary inconvenience for people who are financially less fortunate.” American Progressive Bag Alliance executive director Matt Seaholm said in a statement the ban “incentivizes the use of products that can be worse for the environment than 100 percent recyclable, highly reused plastic retail bags.” O’Malley said he will work with all stakeholders to carry out the ban and “ensure that every Bostonian has access to reusable bags.” Via TreeHugger , the Boston Globe , and Metro Images via Depositphotos and votsek on Flickr

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Boston just officially banned single-use plastic bags

Luxury private-island resort in the Maldives aims for minimal site impact

November 2, 2017 by  
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A new paradise destination has surfaced on the waters of the jaw-droppingly beautiful Maldives . Singapore-based WOW Architects recently completed the St. Regis Maldives, a luxury hotel that extends out of a private island. In hopes of minimizing the resort’s impact on the landscape, WOW architects implemented prefabricated timber systems and uses local labor and materials whenever possible. Covering 16,000 square meters across land and water, the St. Regis Maldives comprises 77 villas divided into four experiential zones—lagoon, beach, coastal, and jungle—each defined by different anchoring activities connected via a meandering art trail. The hut-like building forms and spaces take inspiration from nature, with maximum use of cross-laminated wood and minimal use of concrete and steel. Landscaping focuses on conservation of existing island flora and fauna, as well as replacement of displaced plant material with native species. Related: World’s largest underwater restaurant installed in the Maldives “The local people live in a delicate balancing act with nature, and are totally dependent on trade, technology, and tourism to sustain themselves,” wrote the architects. “Thus, when we were given an opportunity to design a Maldivian resort hotel, we chose to delight the senses through education, creating awareness, and new paradigms of interacting with the physical environment. Here, paradise is emotionally and intellectually experienced and enjoyed, but with a profound awareness of the complex relationships of the eco systems being inhabited.” + WOW Architects Images 2018 copyright WOW Architects | Warner Wong Design

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Luxury private-island resort in the Maldives aims for minimal site impact

Kenyas Bird Nest is a breathtaking safari suite in the African wilderness

October 16, 2017 by  
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If we ever won the lottery, this breathtaking Bird Nest in Kenya is where we’d like to spend the night. The award-winning Segera Retreat and NAY PALAD just unveiled a breathtaking luxury escape that lets lucky guests sleep beneath the stars in one of Africa’s most iconic safari locations. Designed by architect Daniel Pouzet near a river full of wildlife, this unique suite above the treetops is surrounded by pristine nature and 360-degree panoramic views of the Laikipia plains. Perched above the tree canopy, the Bird Nest blends into the landscape with its timber frame woven together with locally sourced raw materials. Individual tree branches make up the crowning bird’s nest structure, where guests can lay out beneath the stars. The interior suite, wrapped with glazing and wooden louvers , is a cozy den richly layered with bespoke furnishings and textiles. The fully equipped bathroom includes running water heated by solar and a flushing toilet. The luxury suite sleeps two, but can also accommodate a small family. Related: 7 eco-friendly and conservation-minded safari lodges across Africa The Bird Nest experience begins just before sunset when guests are whisked away on a tour of the area then greeted at their suite with champagne, culinary delights, and beds prepared with luxurious linens with mood lighting set by lanterns. Adventurous guests have the option of dining on the top open-air deck with views of the sunset and sleeping beneath the stars. “To wake up to the magical sound of wildlife and birds, surrounded by pristine nature as far as the eye can see, is a life-changing experience; this is a place of true, untouched wonderment,” said Jens Kozany, the General Manager of Segera. Unsurprisingly, this one-of-a-kind stay at the Bird Nest doesn’t come cheap—the cost of the Bird Nest Experience starts at $1,150 USD per night. + Bird Nest Images by Jimmy Nelson

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Kenyas Bird Nest is a breathtaking safari suite in the African wilderness

Kengo Kuma unveils nature-filled Eco-Luxury Hotel for Paris

June 29, 2017 by  
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Travelers to Paris can soon immerse themselves in a paradise of luxury and greenery at the Kengo Kuma -designed Eco-Luxury Hotel. Located on the banks of the River Seine in the Rive Gauche neighborhood, the plant-covered Eco-Luxury Hotel will deliver a breath of fresh air to Paris’ dense urban fabric. The building will be built of timber—a favorite material of Kuma—and punctuated with greenery that grows along the balconies, rooftops, interior, and ground level. Set along the Avenue de France, the Eco-Luxury Hotel was conceived as a green reprieve from the bustling city streets. An intimate public garden is placed at the heart of the project between the main U-shaped 1Hotel and Slo Living youth hostel. Long and folded timber fins clad the building facades, creating space for planters and balconies. The overlapping fins’ long and narrow profiles and abundant greenery give the hotel the illusion of a dense forest. Related: Kengo Kuma unveils “blossoming” glass and timber villas for Bali “As particles, dispersed facade panels together with the volumetric decomposition come to blur the shape of the building,” said Kengo Kuma & Associates to Dezeen . “The warm materiality of the wood is combined with the soften reflection and aerial touch of the metal panels. The building will come alive with the light.” The lower floors of the building surrounding the central garden feature full-height glazing and a series of public spaces including sport facilities, business incubators, restaurant, co-working space, and roof terrace. The hotel interior will be filled with natural light and also feature a predominately timber materials palette. + Kengo Kuma & Associates Via Dezeen Images by Luxigon / Mir

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Kengo Kuma unveils nature-filled Eco-Luxury Hotel for Paris

Amazing Dutch Windwheel is a green energy generator you can live in

June 29, 2017 by  
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The iconic Dutch windmill is getting a high-tech makeover with a big eco-friendly boost. Windwheel Corporation unveiled today their new designs for the Dutch Windwheel, a circular building set on the water that harnesses clean energy and houses private residences as well as public venues. Created for Rotterdam, the futuristic Dutch Windwheel aims to transform the city skyline and provide an eye-catching landmark that’ll serve as the new benchmark for healthy, sustainable design. First unveiled in mid-2015, the Dutch Windwheel 2.0 fleshes out the project’s programmatic functions, circulation patterns, and energy systems in more detail. Windwheel Corporation worked with a team of innovators, including Arup , Royal BAM Groep, Deltares, and others, to develop the project. A Green Deal was also signed today at Rotterdam’s World Trade Center by Minister Kamp, Provincial Executive member Bom-Lemstra (province of Zuid-Holland) and Alderman Struijvenberg (municipality Rotterdam) to increase the project’s chances of realization. The innovative Dutch Windwheel comprises apartments, a hotel , a space for short-stay housing, commercial and cultural space, a cruise terminal, and a sky lobby with a restaurant at the top of the building. Similar to a Ferris wheel , the Windwheel will be equipped with mobile cabins that transport visitors to the highest point of the structure. Certain cabins will have special features, such as the Bar cabin with food and drinks, the Relax cabin for yoga and relaxation, and even a cabin that goes underwater for up-close views of aquatic life. Elevators and stairs will also be installed. Related: The Dutch Windwheel is not only a silent wind turbine – it’s also an incredible circular apartment building The disk-like building will be built with locally sourced materials and wrapped in a smart plant-covered skin that reflects unwanted solar heat gain while letting in natural light and ventilation. Rainwater will be captured and reused throughout the building. Artificial wetlands provide water filtration and habitat. The facade will be integrated with solar panels and wind energy will also be harnessed. Organic waste will be collected for biogas production. + Dutch Windwheel Images by DoepelStrijkers

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Amazing Dutch Windwheel is a green energy generator you can live in

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