Located in the remote outer Islands of the Seychelles, the eco-development of Alphonse Island embodies the core focus of conservation coupled with sustainable principles of development; environmentally, economically and socially.
The most sustainable environmental approach would be to build nothing, however, as facilities to accommodate guests are required, the proposed construction attempts to disappear and dissolve into the landscape - an architectural minimalism, not in an aesthetic sense, but rather of minimal enclosure; a sense of ‘being in’ the landscape even when inside.
‘Low impact’ buildings are subservient to the surrounding nature both in distribution, materiality and use. The emphasis on seamless integration between interior end exterior spaces is accentuated by; operable walls and screens, raised split levels and non linear roof planes limiting spatial enclosure.
Existing buildings are dressed ‘down’ rather than ‘up’, concrete walls remodeled and distressed as though left abandoned for generations and rediscovered as ‘ruins’.
Situated at the epicenter of prevailing trade winds, the Seychelles saw traders from as far afield as China, Indonesia, Persia, India and Europe. The diversity of this cultural heritage has been drawn upon to inform the architectural language with particular emphasis on the maritime with interiors adopting the traditional trading items such as, Chinese silk, Persian silverware & blown glass, Indian cotton, carved ebony and precious metals of East Africa.