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Four Seasons Resort, Maldives at Kuda Huraa
by Grounds Kent Architects



Grounds Kent Architects have worked at Kuda Huraa since the resort become a Four Seasons property, and with the island suffering substantial damage during the 2004 tsunami, our client took the opportunity to conduct a full scale redevelopment and renovation. The architectural inspiration for the redevelopment of Kuda Huraa came from the unique ambience of a Maldivian Village. Visitors to the Maldives rarely experience the charm and welcoming nature of a traditional Maldivian village and at Kuda Huraa we have developed a range of villa types and public areas that recreate a uniquely local Maldivian ambience and capture the charm of local culture and traditions. The Beach Pavilions have been extensively renovated, with light filled bathrooms, stone outdoor showers and individual plunge pools. The design approach and use of natural materials capture the qualities and ambience of the beach setting, while privacy and guest amenity is maintained and enhanced. Every villa has been provided with a thatched shade pavilion adjacent to the plunge pool, detailed with timber lattice work, coconut timber columns and architectural features that reflect Maldivian culture and art and provide the guest with the unique and relaxing experience of a resort holiday in a tropical environment. The stone walls are built by local tradesmen, using local techniques that date back centuries, and enhance the timeless ambience of the island. The Beach Bungalows are completely new. The curved roof forms, timber lattice work, and architectural features refer to elements of Maldivian architecture that work together to

provide a unique guest experience and reference local culture and design. Every villa has a generous outdoor bathroom courtyard, with high stone walls providing complete privacy. Stone outdoor showers, local artworks and decorative lanterns placed amongst the lush tropical landscaping create an individual courtyard that is secluded and filled with the warmth and charm of a local Maldivian home. The lime washed walls create an aged beauty that is serene and relaxing. The complete redevelopments of the restaurants and swimming pools, as well as the renovations to the Lobby and Dive Centre have created public spaces that compliment the village ambience of the island. The new restaurant has a raised floor level to provide guests with uninterrupted views across the ocean. The natural materials and architectural features reflect Maldivian culture and enhance the natural beauty of the location. The Restaurant has been designed with several different dining experiences. Guests can enjoy dining in the spectacular timber pavilions, under the stars on the sand, or amongst the tropical landscaping in the garden courtyard and at all times the guest experiences the unique ambience of a tropical holiday with a strong connection to climate and culture. The stone walls feature strongly in the restaurant design and complement the traditional feeling of the island villas. At night the romance of the island comes to life. Handcrafted lanterns with Maldivian motifs hang from trees and ground lanterns light the lush landscaping and flood the textures of the stone walls. The magic of a Maldivian village setting.

Singapore 249724, International
Grounds Kent Architects
089 3357622
Project Team
Project architect: Nick Juniper
Project architect: Nick Juniper
Design architect: Martin Grounds
Design architect: Martin Grounds
Structural consultant: Deepal Wickramasinghe
Electrical consultant: JPR
Mechanical consultant: JPR
Landscape consultant: One Degree North
Interior designer: Hirsch Bedner & Associates
Lighting consultant: Project Lighting Design
Quantity consultant: KPK Quantity Surveyors
Builder: Sun Jin Singapore
Photographer: Markus Gortz
Photographer: Markus Gortz

Photographs by Markus Gortz & Markus Gortz, text by Grounds Kent Architects

Link directly to this award entry: is the website of The Royal Australian Institute of Architects