Spiral House in Nalati. China

Private commision 2014

Nalati National Forest Resort is an ambitious project to promote tourism in an amazing natural area in the Xinyuan Region, close to the border with Mongolia. Huge extensions of grassland are blended with ancient woods. The villa sits in the heart of Nalati National Park. The surroundings are vast, the views are multiple and the light makes its way through the tree branches casting shadows in the floor. The trees and the vegetation are the true ‘inhabitants’ of the plot. The human scale is nowhere to be found when one is surrounded by all this nature.

The villa is generated by three elements: nature, a series of structural reinforced concrete bands and 9 square-like spaces measuring 6 by 6 meters. The bands tie together these spaces while nature is enclosed within these spaces. They pile up one on top of each other rotating around the central square while the space inside them grows in a spiral manner; so is the walk inside the villa.  The different configurations of the slab allow using the space in different ways creating double height spaces, terraces, voids or single height spaces.

Trees pass through the voids of the bands and merge with the interior spaces of the villa. The height of the bands allows creating multiple experiences with nature diminishing the frontier between the inside of the villa and the outside. One can experience nature from the inner spaces in various ways since the way the inhabitant comes into contact with it depends on the program which takes place inside the villa. These bands control not only the way we look out to nature but distort the scale of the villa from the outside. By changing the apparent scale of the villa, it fits in perfectly in a plot with no human scale.

In the Spiral Villa, there is a symbiotic relation between nature, space and structure. The bands are the villa’s structure; the space is linked by these bands in a spiral and infinite growth; nature can grow through the bands and merge with the villa. Here is a villa, made with just three elements, to shelter and to merge man with nature.

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