This project located on a High Yunnan Mountain Plateau close to the border of Tibet is a contemporary interpretation of the local Tibetan lifestyle and culture. Ecoid Architects’ original brief was to restore a 100-year-old Tibetan village house to accommodate both single travellers and family groups.
The Tibetan house reuses all the old massive timber columns and beams to support the roof and floor slabs, while the walls that enclose three sides of the building were constructed by the local villagers using traditional rammed earth method. Timber and glass facade is added to the fourth side of the house that faces southwest to maximise solar exposure during winter. Oriented towards the distant hills that resemble the profile of the reclining Buddha, the pine frame lobby building was also built by local villagers. The lobby is a gathering space for the guests, its interior is laid out to encourage guests mingling and is decorated with objects of the Tibetan culture.
Ecoid Architects favourite aspect of this project was the incorporation of the Tibetan culture through the architecture and interior. As the resort aims to give guests an authentic Tibetan experience, daily activities are also organised to include hikes to nearby mountains and visits to ancient monasteries that dot the Tibetan plateau in this region.
The resort tells the story of the local Tibetan culture and lifestyle in a contemporary way. An example is the use of local elements in the lobby. Anchored at one end with a huge fireplace, the reception counter is made up of a series of stacked Tibetan wooden trunks. This is set against a backdrop of old Tibetan wooden horse saddles. To engage the guests with the Tibetan village life, a library showcases the collection of Chingke, clear liquor distilled from highland barley, by various Tibetan families. The other end of the lobby is the communal dining table where guests can sit to discuss the day’s adventures. Bundles of harvested highland barley and dried chilli peppers hung from old rural farming pitchforks on the wall that terminates the space.