Международная Ассоциация Союзов Архитекторов
The International Association of Eurasian Unions of Architects (IAUA)

Archi-News 6/2015

Archi-News 6/2015




Hotel views

After years of standardization, the hotel architecture responds to a need of identity and acknowledgement of the local culture to enable a genuine experience. Between refined typology and very present materials. For instance, the Boutique Hotel Sala Ayutthaya in Thailand, designed by the architecture office Onion, with its high red brick walls and decorated outlines, reacts in each detail to a better interpretation of the 'genius loci'. Morphosis Architects’ minimalist skyscraper project in Vals (Switzerland) proposes a mirrored façade to refract the landscape’s perspective whilst offering to the customers an unbelievable view on the Alps. On a smaller scale, the Dream Hotel in Tampere (Finland) by Puisto Architects relies on a welcoming atmosphere the use of local wood and a tight budget.

Actually, the hotel groups and the architecture offices are conscious of the value of a precise, friendly and rational concept and want to develop today properties asper architectural styles in harmony with the environment’s specific character. The space assigned to the rooms may vary considerably from luxurious villas to capsules, like the Menomenopiu Architects’s proposal for the Seine’s banks in Paris, inspired by the bookstalls close by: «cabins» on metallic stilts to be fully integrated in the site. A probably utopian project which could influence future concepts. These changes don’t only concern the envelop or the different interior spaces but also the way to incorporate the technological progresses and the study of the new behaviours.

The Archi-Europe team


Portrait of the month

1 Thom Mayne

2 Giant Interactive Group Corporate Headquarters, Shanghai, China 2010

3 Perot Museum, Dallas, USA 2013

4 Bill & Melinda Gates Hall,New York, USA 2014

5 Emerson College Los Angeles, USA 2014

6 Taubman Complex, Southfield, Michigan (VS) 2016

7 Hanking Center, Shenzhen, China 2018

8 Hotel 7132 Tower, Valls, Switzerland 2019

Thom Mayne

Founded and managed by the 2005 Pritzker Prize winner Thom Mayne, Morphosis has designed a 381 m high hotel in the emblematic site of Vals (Switzerland). An opportunity to come back on his strong personality and the recent works of the well known Los Angeles office.

Forecasted in 2019 on the Vals site, which already has a renowned spa hotel designed by the architect Peter Zumthor, this completely glazed hotel with a narrow and slender profile will refract, like a mirror, the spectacular beauty of the alpine landscape. A sort of podium will link the building to the neighbouring structures, a cantilevered construction will be intended for the public equipments whilst the 107 rooms will be settled in the tower. All this between density and lightness, dialogue with the landscape and originality of the site, with local materials. The minimalist object fits well into Thom Mayne’s works, as he is known for his way to go beyond limits of the forms and traditional materials..

Born in 1944 in Westbury (Connecticut), he mainly lived in California where he graduated in architecture, in 1968, from the South California University. After two years working with Victor Gruen, he started teaching and then, in 1972, founded Morphosis with Jim Stafford, office which is going to design many emblematic buildings throughout the years, in many countries in the world, where his innovative concepts are noticed. When, ten years ago, he received the Pritzker Prize Award, one of his close friends, the architect Lebbeus Woods described him as personifying the crisis of spirit and conscience in architecture. «Throughout his whole professional life Thom Mayne has been a rebel, he adds. Uncompromising and decided architect, strongly convinced, he inspires love and hate, not to mention resentment and desire. His first professional steps were full of conflicts and fights with the customers or the builders, but Woods admits that he is now more relaxed and open than before.< br /> His work has been before all deeply thought of. It may seem incongruous for those who only see audacious forms, most obvious characteristic, but he is in constant evolution. He is always able to reassess himself. «Mayne’s architecture doesn’t rebel against the conventions as it absorbs and transforms it. (…) He accepts the classic typologies - bank, school, justice palace - and establishes programs with a generosity underlining his respect for the other people’s needs, even for those with whom he shares little in the way of outlook and sensibility.» During the last thirty years, Morphosis has received many rewards, for instance more than a hundred from the American Institute of Architects (AIA). In this very dynamic practice more than 50 professionals are working today with the capacity to make progress in today’s social, cultural, politic and technologic life conditions.

Among the recent projects, the Giant Interactive Group’s corporate headquarters in Shanghai (2010) is designed like a village welcoming different functions in some architectural forms which scatter, break up and integrate into the landscape. If the office building presents a spectacular cantilevered construction on the lake, the other functions are integrated in the hilly environment. The building optimizes the energy efficiency and the users comfort. Combined with a skylight, its narrow profile enables natural light to enter permanently. The green landscape roof supplies the thermal mass which limits the heat gain and the cooling expenses whilst the façade’s double skin and the curtain wall reduce the solar energy impact. Dedicated to nature and sciences, the Perot Museum in Dallas opened in 2013, is seen as a great floating cube on a landscape base. Its dynamic design creates a real experience for the visitors and establishes an immediate connexion between architectural and natural environment. The high performance building enables to reduce the environmental impact (it was certified in march 2015 One Star for the SITES Pilot Program). The terrace gently descends to connect itself with the museum's roof emblematic stone. Right from the entrance, the visitor is invited to look upwards through the atrium's open volume, the building's main space to circulate.

The Cornell University Bill & Melinda Gates Hall, bringing together the Computer Science and Information Science departments, stands out by the sculptural forms of its façade covered with stainless steel dynamic panels, which, like an armour, give shade to the classrooms. The circulation is organized around the glazed atrium on the western side of the building where the full height glass façade, a skylight, and the interior envelop in fritted glass reveal a nexus of activity on all floors. Situated in the heart of Hollywood, the Emerson College (ELA)'s new installation concentrates the diversity of an university campus in an urban site. In the two slender towers bridged by a multi-use platform, there is an open central volume to create a flexible system. The classrooms, the residences and the administrative offices weave through the void defining multi-level terraces and active interstitial spaces that foster informal social activity. The construction is linked both to the sustainable conception and the societal responsibility (perforated metal shading screens, mechanical system using campus lake - source cooling contributing to a 30% lower energy usage, use of recycled and renewable construction materials, 40% less water consumption, energy savings for heating and cooling, etc. To comply with the needs of an increasing number of students, the new Michigan Taubman Complex uses modules and flexible zones to efficiently support the future expansion, whilst preserving the functionality and the aesthetics integrity. The building is lifted from the ground giving an impressive contrast with the topography.

The Hanking Center tower, under construction in Shenzen, rethinks the traditional office building concept with an innovating approach for working spaces and circulations. Its slender profile acts like a signal, mixing public components (podium) and private spaces (tower) and reducing considerably the building's structural impact. Right around, a great esplanade creates a new landmark in the area. A range of bridges and diagonals link the different volumes to the main tower. The circulation zones are lit up with natural light and open up views on the city. All these examples confirm how Thom Mayne (with his team) has shown his interest in all the complexities of architecture, to ultimately give birth to the final result, ie, the building itself. « If in architecture, he said, you are not interested in the basic principles, you are just cake decorating.»

1 Thom Mayne
2 Giant Interactive Group Corporate Headquarters, Shanghai, China 2010
3 Perot Museum, Dallas, USA 2013
4 Bill & Melinda Gates Hall, New York, USA 2014
5 Emerson College Los Angeles, USA 2014
6 Taubman Complex, Southfield, Michigan, USA 2016
7 Hanking Center, Shenzhen, China 2018
8 Hotel 7132 Tower, Valls, Switzerland 2019

Project of the month

1 Italian pavilion

2 Chinese pavilion

3 Great-Britain’s pavilion

4 Russian pavilion

5 Vanke pavilion

6 Austrian pavilion


EXPO 2015

Traditionally, the universal exhibitions are an opportunity to promote national know-how, technological progresses and architectural creativity. The present Milan Exhibition does not contravene to this rule. Based on the theme «Feed the Planet, Energy for Life», the event highlights 55 national pavilions and about 40 created for international organizations and private companies, important representatives to help to solve the agricultural problems and to feed the world.
First the host country with the 35 m high Italian Pavilion, designed by Nemesi after winning an architectural competition. It’s the highest construction of the Exhibition.The building includes the Palazzo Italia (6 levels and 14398 sqm) intended to remain permanently on the site and other temporary constructions (2 levels and 12551 sqm). Palazzo Italia is considered to be a real architectural and constructive challenge seing the design complexity and the technologies used. Its « urban forest » concept relies on an originally textured « skin » reminding of branches intertwined at random. Executed in a new concrete, the façade is covered with more than 700 biodynamic panels which can « capture » the polluted air and transform it into inert material, whilst the innovating photovoltaic glass roof interprets a forest canopy with flat and curved geometric forms.

is designed like a field of spaces under a floating roof. It merges the profile of an urban panorama on the northern side with a landscape profile on the south, expressing the idea of an harmonious coexistence between town and nature. Made of wood as per the traditional Chinese architectural principles, it is covered with textured shingles executed thanks to the present technology enabling to create long spans.
Drawn by the artist Wolfgang Buttress, great specialist of complex architectural structures, in cooperation with the Simmonds Studio, the British pavilion opens on a sculptural 14 m long construction built with thousands of individual aluminium components using light and sound to simulate the activity of a real beehive. And this to emphasize research and technology to help reaching food security and biodiversity. Furthermore, it offers a « sensory immersive experience » leaving the visitors with a « sustainable savour of the British landscape » . The members zigzag concentric forms shape the hive’s main part and are linked to rods up to one meter long.
For Russia, SPEECH has conceived a vast simple and audacious structure made of wood from sustainable sources, with on top a roof with an awning. The latter spreads out on 30 m above the pavilion's principal entrance.The architect Sergei Tchoban points out that the wooden elements refer to the natural landscape and the rich Russian forest. Inside the pavilion is divided into a range of open spaces, and on the superior part, the hanging gardens remind of those in Babylon. Inspired by the traditional Chinese painting, Daniel Libeskind’s pavilion for Vanke forms a flexible and winding geometric motive. Its metallized self-cleaning and air purifying red tile coverings remind of a dragon’s skin. Further than this dragon image, metaphor linked to agriculture, the concept integrates two other Chinese cultural ideas connected to the diet: the shi-tang, traditional Chinese dining room, and the landscape, essential element for life. Inside, the visitors discover 300 screens settled on a bamboo forest.

With the theme «Breathe Austria» the Austrian pavilion wishes to insist on the importance of pure air in the production of safe and sound food. Klaus K Loenhart has created a green zone, generating, without air-conditioning, the microclimatic conditions of the Austrian forest. This evaporation surface (about 43200 sqm) enables to produce oxygen for 1800 persons per hour. Once inside the pavilion, the visitors can immediately feel the difference with the heat outside.The authors of the project, the architects, artists, engineers and scientists have tested out a range of innovations from solar and green technologies to sound and climatic production.

1 Italian pavilion (arch. Nemesi)
2 Chinese pavilion (arch. Tsinghua University + Studio Link-Arc) © Sergio Grazia
3 Great-Britain
s pavilion (arch. Simmonds Studio & Wolfgang Buttress)
4 Russian pavilion (arch. SPEECH) © Eventica Communications
5 Vanke pavilion (arch. Daniel Libeskind)
6 Austrian pavilion (arch. Klaus K. Loenhart) © TEAM.BREATHE.AUSTRIA


Product of the month

Epson SureColor SC-Tx200 - INNOVATE, CREATE, PRINT

The range of high-speed, four-colour large-format Epson SureColor SC-Tx200 printers is designed for a variety of graphics, CAD and GIS applications within design, commercial print, copy shop, architecture, building and engineering environments.

The roll-fed SureColor SC-T range features nine models, offering a choice of widths (24-inch, 36-inch, 44-inch), productivity and scanning capability to match your needs. Building on the success of the previous SureColor SC-Tx000 printers launched in 2012, the high-speed SureColor SC-T7200, SC-T5200 and SC-T3200 printers introduce a range of enhancements designed to maximise performance within busy print production environments.

The series delivers astonishing results at unbelievably fast speeds. High-quality prints are assured by the combination of Epson's four-colour UltraChrome XD pigment ink with permanent PrecisionCore™ TFP printheads to deliver precise, repeatable and long life performance.

More information about the Epson Color SC-T visit:

Events in the spotlight

Cityscape Global - 8-10 September 2015 - Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), UAE

For more than a decade, Cityscape Global has been the annual meeting point for key real estate investors, developers, regional and city investment promotion authorities, architects, designers and other real estate professionals to drive growth in real estate investment and development across emerging markets globally.

With over 47,000 participants in 2014, Cityscape is the annual opportunity to build and maintain your presence across Middle East real estate markets.

The exhibition features a series of round table discussions, conference and awards ceremony honoring those who have contributed to outstanding urban development and architecture.

For more details, please visit our website
Cityscape Egypt 16 - 19 September 2015 - Cairo International Convention Centre

Cityscape Egypt provides architects and other solution providers with a once-a-year opportunity to connect with Egypt’s leading developers and other real estate professionals under one roof. In a recovering economic climate in which real estate prevails as a major driving force of growth, the exhibition is a primary chance to let prospects and clients know about your services and future plans. Make sure you register now to get FREE entry, saving EGP 50 on your entrance fee and Visitor Showguide.

For more information about Cityscape

SAIE 'Smart house exhibition - BUILDING & ENERGY' Bologna - 14 - 17 October 2015

The goal of reducing a building’s energy consumption through integration between its technological subsystems is the concept behind SAIE Smart House. A relational space devoted to smart building, the initiative focuses on energy efficiency and consolidation, cutting management costs and improving properties in view of a sustainable future.


- PROJECT: Design, rendering, software, hardware, office, 3D, project management, BIM.
- URBAN SPACE: Planning, urban renewal, smart cities, greenery, gardens and parks, intelligent urban networks, pipes and sewers, environmental services, urban and outdoor design, lighting, accessories and services for mobility and the community, emergency services.
- SUSTAINABLE BUILDING: Single-family houses, renovation, certification, energy efficient construction, roofing, high energy efficient envelopes, automatic doors, shutters and gates, drives, internal partitions, raised access floors, suspended ceilings and surface coverings.
- ECO-FRIENDLY TECHNOLOGIES: Materials and products for construction, building structures and systems, seismic structural retrofits, eco-efficient construction technologies, chemicals and consolidation, special foundations for buildings.
- RE-USE: Re-use, social housing, property market, public assets, online marketing services.
- SITE: Tools, equipment and temporary works for construction sites, hoisting and special building work

The figures of succes for SAIE - Growth in 2014 and even greater success in 2015
93.000 visitors, 102.000 square meters, 13 halls, 452 seminars and workshops,
21 official delegations, 2581 speakers, 1408 companies

Opening hours
Wednesday 14 to Friday 16 October : from 9.00 to 18.00
Saturday 17 October : from 9.00 to 17.00

For more information about SAIE 2015:

Competitions in the spotlight

1. Sergio Sebastián

2. Onz Architects

3. Anastasia Sedova

4. Aigul Nikolaeva

Winners for the MADA Awards 2015 are announced

Archi-Europe and MosBuild have the pleasure of presenting you the winners of the MADA Awards 2015, an international competition open to young architects and students in architecture worldwide.

1. Architect: Best architectural solution for creating an accessible environment
Sergio Sebastián: Project Name: Archaeological Space in Daroca

2. Architect: Best sustainable architecture project
Onz Architects - Onat Öktem - Project Name: Gokceada Sustainable School

3. Student: Best architectural solution for creating an accessible environment
Anastasia Sedova - Project Name: Park for all ‘Zyablikovo’

4. Student: Best sustainable architecture project
Aigul Nikolaeva - Project Name: Eco-complex “AquaDom”

For more information about Mada:


1. Guz Architects

2. dbalp

3. P Landscape

We are happy to announce the winners of the Pool Vision Asia competition.

In the framework of Piscine Splash! Exhibition in Singapore, organized by GL Events, Mrs Noémi Petit , co-director of the show, and Mister Jacques Allard, CEO of Archi-Europe, have awarded the three prizes of the best Asian projects in categories: Private Pools, Public Pools/Hotel and Spas on 20 May at the Sands Expo Convention, Marina Bay Sands.


1. Private pools: Guz Architects - Project Fish House

2. Spas: dbalp - Alila Cha- Projetc Am Resort

3. Public pools/Hotel: P Landscape – Project Pillars House

For more information about Pool Vision:




Making Africa A Continent of Contemporary Design
(14/03 – 13/09/2015) - Weil am Rhein (D)

Trésors d'architecture De l'Art Nouveau à l'Expo '58
(Prolongation > 13/09/2015) - Brussels CIVA (B)

Le Corbusier Mesures de l'homme
(29/04 – 3/08/2015) - Paris Centre Pompidou (F)

The Kitchen and its Furniture - Design and history
(> 26/07/2015) – Vienna Hofmobiliendepot (AT)

Decades of Finnish Architecture 1900–1970
(27/03/2010 – 31/12/2020) (FI)

Treehousing - International wood design competition
Deadline: 15/08/2015

The Rust Belt Architecture Competition, USA – international
Deadline: 01/08/2015

happy LED life! - a design competition for Gwangju International Design Biennale 2015
Deadline: 07/09/2015


Frei Otto – a life of research, construction and inspiration
Irene Meissner, Eberhard Möller

€ 34.00
128 pages
Bilingual German/English
ISBN 978-3-95553-252-9
>> Read more

Africa Drawn
One Hundred Cities

Gary White, Marguerite Pienaar & Bouwer Serfontein

DOM publishers
€ 48.00
224 pages
ISBN 978-3-86922-423-7
>> Read more

Le Corbusier: Ideas ans Forms
William J R Curtis

€ 125.00
512 pages
ISBN 978-0714868943
>> Read more


© 2015 Archi-Europe
Responsible Editor: Jacques Allard
Chief Editor: Marie-Claire Regniers

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