Mobil Arquitectos have completed the design for the Refugia Hotel, a modern retreat located in Dalcahue, Los Lagos Region, Chile. The imposing modern project has a total surface of 1,250 square meters and takes in the rich biodiversity of the surrounding wetlands. Extensive glass facades and wooden-clad ceilings of larch define the hotel’s design and ensure an optimum environmental connection.
According to the creative team behind the project, “the architecture of the hotel seeks to plant a light footprint on the topography of the landscape. In the manner of a bridge, a linear arrangements of rooms, suspended on four concrete pillars, is designed to be a structural composition perched on a hilltop, rather than an opaque edifice growing out of it, maximizing light, space, sky and perspective.” Sustainability was a major factor taken into consideration when developing the plans for the modern edifice. Passive design strategies that optimize the use of energy were employed, including harnessing the sun’s heat trapped in concrete floors or radiant heat cross for common spaces cool. [Photographs & Video: Nico Saieh]
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.
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.