They are some of the biggest names in high-end hospitality design, and now WATG Architects, St Legere Design International and P49 Deesign have been brought together to work once again with one of Bali’s most prestigious properties, this time to create the island’s first integrated residential community.
The three design firms were brought together to design AYANA Residences, a 6.5 hectare secure gated community comprising 115 units, located on the largest ocean-front land bank remaining in South Bali. All three firms have been separately involved over the past 16 years in the design of the adjacent AYANA Resort and Spa. Their commission for AYANA Residences was to maintain the same standard of quality, warmth and Balinese philosophy as the resort design, but to adapt this to a modern residential estate that reflects the lifestyle, sanctuary and harmony of a second home.
The architecture is modern Balinese, relaxed yet lasting, and maximizes the cliff-top location. “It’s not ostentatious, it’s not overdesign,” said Bill Reed, Vice-President of WATG which designed the original resort in 1995. “It allows the owner to live their own lifestyle, personalize their spaces to make this their home away from home. AYANA Residences really embodies the lifestyle and spirit of Bali and creates an opportunity for buyers to live here or come on regular vacations and take advantage of all the amenities in the entire property. WATG is proud to be associated with it; we think it’s going to be a huge success.”
Landscape designer Dennis Selinger, Principal of St Legere, said the Residences are unique in Bali for the sense of space and balance. “It’s a real blessing to work with this developer as it’s focused on quality and there are a lot of spaces devoted to the landscape which is unusual in many developments,” said Mr Selinger. “AYANA Resort has been an award-winning project, best in Asia, best spa in Asia, it’s truly a unique property, and what we wanted to do for the Residences is take the same philosophy, that same sense of space, so you’re not in a typical cramped development. There is a sense of luxury that’s unparalleled in the Asian market.”
Mr Selinger said the Balinese philosophy of Tri Hita Kirana – embodying the balance of God, Nature and Man – is a very strong influence, from the indoor-outdoor living to the material selection with rich textures, bright colors, distinctively-shaped trees, large stones integrated with the buildings, and unique details. The botanical gardens include bamboo plantation to collect rainwater for irrigation – supplementing a Reverse Osmosis recycling system – and fruit and vegetable gardens.
Carl Almeida of P49 Deesign, which designed the much lauded Cliff Villas at AYANA Resort in 2005, said his experience working with this developer has given him a strong understanding of what Residences’ investors aspire to and want in their holiday home. “We feel the AYANA Residences is something that will lead the market over here and represents a true reflection of AYANA Resort as well,” said Mr Almeida.
“We didn’t want to do a purely Balinese design, but what we have done is added some key yet subtle details that reference Balinese culture to give a sense of place. It’s contemporary but it’s not just the minimalist approach to design, we really believe in warmth and feeling at home. The materials include marble for luxury, a lot of texture, amazing wallpapers and fabrics focusing on warmth. The bathrooms are based on amazing scale and symmetry.”
He said the materials used in the interiors – which are available at additional cost for Residences buyers, who are also free to design their unit in their own style – are based on a progression of spaces to create an entry-vastu (the ancient Hindu design philosophy similar to feng shui). “You enter and focus on something such as an artwork or great painting and then you enter the next space and it’s never a full reveal at one time, it’s really a series of spaces that are laid out from one space to the next and before you know it you have got a series of experiences,” said Mr Almeida. “We wanted to create a sense of wow, we wanted to create warmth, we wanted to really create the sense of luxury.”