Embedded in a scenic mountainside and offering astonishing views over the neighboring island of Koh Phangan, Aqualina Residence is an unusal looking contemporary holiday villa in Koh Samui, Thailand. Every standing point reveals a great perspective, as the L-shaped building is wrapped around the swimming pool and overlooks the sea beyond. The triangular shaped main living area is reflected by the pool and features glass windows that open up the residence towards the landscape. A wooden paneled wall incorporating a black granite counter, a large flat-screen TV and an entertainment system is just one of the glamorous features of the living area. Cylindrical white pillars and white floor tiles visually mix with the leather sofas, complemented by colorful cushions. Aqualina has a total of three bedrooms, displaying an elegant and minimalist design. Sustainable features of the residence include a grass covered roof structures with cooling properties, plus a well adapted water preservation and collection system.
A good building should make you want to look at it. Even if not always liked by passers-by, it should always make them feel something. Manchester Metropolitan’s University’s business school is a building that effortlessly fits this criteria. Indeed for many, the building by Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios is their first taste of the architecture of Manchester as they travel along the arterial road, Mancunian Way. With its distinct ski-slope roof, and glittering mirrored appearance, it provides a flash of silver, and a dazzling break from the dull greys of the motorway, greeting motorists in a slightly space-age way as they enter the city
What is new and exciting now can quickly begin to look tired and out of fashion, so the best buildings don’t just consider what will be interesting to look at now, but also how it might look to people in five, fifty or even a hundred years’ time. 2013’s hotly contested RIBA Stirling Prize went to Witherford Watson Mann Architects for their work on Astley Castle, Warwickshire. In what RIBA Past President Stephen Hodder has described as an extreme retrofit, the project essentially saw a new building inserted subtly into the heart of the old, with a new, two storey residence now hidden within the sandstone walls of the ruins of this medieval castle, to be used as a holiday home for up to eight guests