A boutique resort embedded into its local and cultural context

Situated on the northern coast of Bali, The Tiing has been designed as a reward for the intrepid. Understanding that this project would need a point of differentiation to pull people out of the well-worn tourist paths of southern Bali, the Tiing is a boutique resort embedded into its local and cultural context.

Due to its remote location, the design by Nic Brunsdon deliberately leans on traditional materials and construction techniques. Knowing that concrete is the preferred construction method, and that bamboo is plentiful, a series of bamboo formed concrete walls were erected on site to create this important view corridor.

The materiality of this project aims to work within the local context, construction techniques, resources, and climate. Concrete and bamboo are abundant, so, the architects thought it best to work with the these materials throughout. In a tropical climate, a clean finish will require much maintenance, here, the material will weather in, which they thought enhances the character of the architecture and place. Importantly, this also became the finishing. Expressing the texture and form of the bamboo as a negative impression in the patina of the concrete became the project’s motif.

At each end, the walls become shear, referencing local Balinese gateways prevalent throughout the island. These gateways are highly decorated totems, shear-cut on the travel path to encourage the eye and the spirit to drift onwards.

Architecturally, these walls act as funnels, giving each room equal and opposing view of the mountain and the ocean, meaning that guests are always situated in the truth of the site. The architects thought it vitally important to draw attention to this dual condition as part of a locating and grounding travel experience.

Hidden centrally in the plan is the washing space. This is a rare moment of slick finish in an otherwise unadorned project. Each space has a light well, connecting the occupant back to the sky from the darkness of this isolated space. Protected, hidden, and central, this space becomes a welcome surprise, a place of refuge and delight. This is a place for unwinding reconnecting to the self and to nature.

Arriving at the Tiing is a process of 2.5 hrs traversing winding roads through the lush Balinese landscape. The architects wanted something that would act as a distinct counterpoint to that all-consuming ‘green-ness’, so they created a red public bathing pool. It is partially hidden to the entry sequence but acts as an energising arrival moment in high-contrast the lush green jungle. Further, they paid attention to the height of the site and the way the water bodies of the pool and the ocean would layer against the horizon. Again, the working strategy for this project was a reward for the intrepid, and the central pool further serves to consolidate this.

Design and info © Nic Brunsdon

Images © Ben Hosking

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