Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Sindia in Dakar, Senegal by SAOTA
August 14th, 2016 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: SAOTA
SAOTA’s design inspiration for Sindia eco-resort comes from the traditional architecture of the ‘fulbes’ – semi-nomadic shepherd people living in the savannah zone in Senegal. The proposed resort site is situated just outside the village of Sindia and from where its name originates. It is about 60km from Dakar.
SAOTA reinterprets the traditional ‘fulbe’ architecture in a very contemporary yet enduring way, with sensitivity to the environment in which it will be built. Set amongst a surreal environment of baobab forest, the resort complex comprises a central meeting place for both the dining and lounging area, as well as private accommodation suites.
The merit of the project is in the way the ancient living structures and rituals have been integrated into a world-class design. In Africa, the concept of trees as shelter and as a meeting place is very important, and this has been central to the design of the resort.
The baobab-inspired columns which support the aerodynamically shaped canopy roof and the central fire place in the ‘fulbe’ huts are reinterpreted in the dining room area. The guest suites are arranged around a natural lake, enhancing privacy and introducing evaporative cooling.
Thick earth walls have been used for thermal insulation – allowing living structures to be cool during the day and warmer during the cool evenings. Cross-ventilation, solar chimneys and planted courtyards further reduces the internal temperatures during hot days.
SAOTA’s contemporary finishes have been combined with traditional craftsmanship in the detail of the project so that old and new worlds live harmoniously in this resort which sets a new benchmark for Senegal.
Sindia Senegal has been shortlisted as a finalist in the World Architecture Festival Awards in the leisure led development category for future projects.
SAOTA is well known in South Africa for amongst others, its high-end residential designs along the Atlantic Seaboard. The company has received numerous awards both locally and internationally. In recent years, the majority of its more recent work has been based overseas in more than 33 countries across North America and Central America, Europe, Africa, Asia, Australasia and the Middle East.