Most people live in concrete jungles in today’s technological era. They often find themselves longing for a place that can restore the balance of energy between the presence of nature—spaces with ample greenery and natural light—and a quality lifestyle.
The design team enacted a back-to-nature approach through a natural methodology that demonstrates living in balance with a healthy philosophy to value nature’s energy. The space in the open layout is filled with sun, air and water, as well as integrated with character by manipulating natural light. All materials were kept raw, natural and simple, but creatively applied to enhance environmental performance. They were used to solidify the team’s vision for an office space that connects people with nature. The materials were locally sourced and chosen for their sustainability.
The porch uses a brick floor design that matches the green turfgrass as part of the current evolutionary art hypotheses. Every design detail is an art that expresses the profound value within the building. It is an insight of a craft that is in line with contemporary landscaping.
The property is made up of two bungalows. To compensate for the 3-foot land height difference between the lots, the soil from the higher level was recycled to fill in the void. Existing outmode piping was diverted to the same level, creating a waterfall feature and rainwater collection pond to level the 3-foot difference in height contour.
The rainwater collection pond houses rainfall temporarily while filtering discharge. The pond also serves as a floating car porch and floor design of another entrance. The intention of the floating car porch design is to create a drainage for overflowing water and articulating a relationship between nature, science and building environment. The rainwater collection system also creates a relaxing sound of running water.
The design cultivates a culture of sustainability through the creation of a herb garden and vegetation. To avoid overcrowding the exterior and landscape of the office, the side alley of the office will be used to plant herbs in a descending order and make use of the water flow that connects to the drainage of the floating car porch. There is a hydroponic pond system that maintains the ecosystem of plants and aquatic animals that offers organic sustainability by reducing the ecological footprint. There is also a small nursery with hand-carved orchids and other plants that adorn the building. The main aspect of the interior design is to provide a natural touch, as the ample use of glass in the interior allows the surrounding environment to become part of the interior.
There are a range of activities available within the building for employees to incorporate an ecological lifestyle into their daily activity spaces, such as the wisdom corner, living and dining room, spa, dipping pool and meditation corner. Next to the studio is a stable that houses their pet horse. The horse riding activities bring people closer to nature and have become a community activity for the neighbourhood. The horse also provides manure for the herb garden. The compost is made by allowing it to compost in a 3-foot underground storage for three months, after which it is turned into organic fertiliser.
Project Name: Santa Fe Studio
Location: 12 Persiaran Bukit Melawati 2, Taman Bukit Melawati, Kuala Selangor, Malaysia
Completion Date: December 2016
Gross Floor Area: 1,500 square metres
Building Height: 3½ storeys
Client/Owner/Developer: Foo Wen Pok
Main Contractor: Santa Fe Interior Architecture Sdn Bhd
Interior Design Firm: Santa Fe Interior Architecture Sdn Bhd
Interior Fit-Out Contractor: Fe Studio
Key Suppliers: GQ Projects Sdn Bhd; Nippon Paint; Intersit Marketing Sdn Bhd
Images/Photos: Santa Fe Interior Architecture Sdn Bhd