According to the Chinese believes, the sky and the earth are in perfect harmony and they represent the two powerful coordinates that dictate the supreme manifestation of the universal dialectic. The Chinese Coin House in Santa Cruz, Bolivia is definitely one of those unusual and inciting homes, with a wonderful story behind them. Inspired by the popular Chinese coins that bring luck and prosperity to people (square and stable in the middle and round and harmonic as you approach the margins), the house is envisioned as a magnet for happiness and prosperity. The architect responsible with this fascinating and creative project is Juan Carlos Menacho Durán.
Rounded, like the Milky Way and respecting a simple design line (based on the Phi principle), the Chinese Coin House is neat, sophisticated and very stylish. By respecting the principles of harmony, the architect aimed to offer a shelter that improves the lifestyle of its inhabitants. “When building a house today, it’s no longer possible to ignore these factors. Some examples are determining a location site according to the earth’s electromagnetic lines irradiating low intensity gamma rays; distributing interior spaces in a house, considering location of the four cardinal points, or using the golden number or ratio phi to establish the proportions of longitude, depth and volume (this measurement is needed to recreate spaces, giving its inhabitants stability and harmony).”
These days, a building doesnt just have to look good, it should ideally be good for the environment too. A great example of sustainability spliced with style from the past few years is the M&S store at Cheshire Oaks Retail Park in Ellesmere Port, designed by Aukett Fitzroy Robinson.
Energy during the construction process was saved by using FSC-certified glulam timber instead of steel to create the building’s distinctive wavy roof, while the store’s external walls use hemclad, a highly innovative insulator made from hemp, which, like all plants, absorbs CO2 from the atmosphere as it grows. An 80,000 litre water tank below ground provides water for the store’s toilets and waters the site’s green wall’, which provides natural insulation, acts as an all-natural pollution filter near the car park, and helps to encourage biodiversity. The result is a building that uses a fraction of the energy of structures of a similar size, and is still very popular with local shoppers.