The FuturArc Interview
Chrisna du Plessis
Associate Professor, Sustainable Construction Department of Construction Economics, University of Pretoria 
read more.
Going Low and Local
read more.
The Tent read more.
The New Resort; Urban versus Rural read more.
Greening Beyond Design read more.


CURRENT ISSUE - Mar-Apr 2015

Table of Contents
The FuturArc Interview

Chrisna du Plessis
Associate Professor, Sustainable Construction Department of Construction Economics, University of Pretoria

Going Low & Local
Hotel by the Waterfalls at Ramboda
Bangkok Tree House
The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto
The New Resort; Urban versus Rural
The Tent
Son La Restaurant
Golden Holiday Hotel
Wellness by Design
Saffire Resort

Greening Beyond Design
The Fine Line Between Pleasure and Blight
Greening Tourism in Malaysia
Ecotourism in Australia

Milestones & Events

Product Advertorials


Hospitality Issue | Hotel and Resorts: Connecting with Nature

In the 80s and 90s many talked about how to be tropical but the hospitality industry actually did it. There were a couple of reasons for this. Resorts had space—large plots, natural settings, and the freedom to go big on landscaping. Urban architecture, conversely, was locked into tight sites with high densities and little wiggle room. Tropical resorts also had willing buyers. The architectural styling, the integration with landscaping, openness to climate—these were part of a brand, the package on offer. Tropical styling could, potentially, pay its way.

Fast forward 30 years. We now talk Green; we ask questions on how we get to a sustainable future. The building must manage its relationship with the world, the waste it emits, the resources it consumes. The building must also embed itself in the local—climate, community, ecology.

Resorts are once again on the frontlines of this discussion. The reasons haven’t changed. Travellers are still looking for an experience, a proximity to the ‘real’ thing. Finding something authentic—which is getting harder by the day—is on everyone’s bucket list. A traveller might be persuaded to pick a resort that is aligned to his/her values. Many are looking to reduce their impact on the environment. As a result, hotels wear their Green credentials on their sleeves. Greenness is made manifest through design, the way that they touch the site, the construction materials they choose. In this issue you will find excellent examples of this: the Saffire Resort in Australia; The Tent in Vietnam; and Hotel by the Waterfalls at Ramboda in Sri Lanka.

Urban hotels, meanwhile, are overcoming the chokehold of the city. Bangkok Tree House in Thailand and Golden Holiday Hotel in Vietnam attempt, in their own ways, to showcase an environmental agenda in tight sites. The most vivid example of Green-on-display is the PARKROYAL on Pickering in Singapore. This is an ode to nature in which form becomes metaphor (are those rice terraces or subterranean caves?). Each room, each corridor that gets you to a room, is designed so you, the guest, can see and touch a garden. This notion—that our wellness is contingent on proximity to nature—is increasingly important to the idea of a sustainable building. You will find more examples of this in the pages ahead.

Our FuturArc Interviewee, Dr Chrisna du Plessis, no doubt would approve of this love affair with nature. Her new book, Designing for Hope, discusses regenerative design, an important new paradigm that leapfrogs the sustainability discussion on to the next level. Regenerative design is also the theme for this year’s FuturArc Prize. In the next issue we will feature winners of the competition and say more on Dr du Plessis’ book.

Until then, happy reading.





March 2015 News Roundup

According to Hoang Van Hien, chairman of Hien Luong agricultural co-operative, biofertilisers made from farm waste is replacing industrial products in rice paddies, peanut and vegetable farms. read more


February 2015 News Roundup

After the installation of two vertical axis wind turbines as part of its high-profile renovation project, one of the world’s most iconic sites has become the latest high-profile venue to embrace renewable energy. read more


January 2015 News Roundup

Singapore real estate developer Keppel Land ranked fourth on the 2015 Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World index (Global 100), which was released by Canadian investment advisory firm Corporate Knights at the sidelines of the World Economic Forum meetingread more


December 2014 News Roundup

Imperial Home Corp. (IHC), a local real estate company, has collaborated with Enfinity Group, a Belgian solar power company, for the development of solar-powered subdivision with 1,000 homes in Santo Tomas, which will be the first solar-powered housing project in the countryread more


November 2014 News Roundup

India has constructed its first net-zero energy building with adoption of solar passive design and energy-efficient building materials. The building boasts an earthquake-resistant structure with a total plinth area of 31,488 square metresread more

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A Modern Roofing Solution

The challenge for adopting a low-pitched roof is the limitation of the tiles’ pitch level. Monier’s Horizon 10 Roof System is a concrete roof tile technology and solution that can increase a roof’s pitch level to 10 degrees. read more

Rainscreen Cladding Systems
Over 5 million square metres of StoVentec have been used worldwide since the system was introduced in Germany in the early 1990s. With a wide variety of aesthetic finishes, colours and patterns, the company’s range of façade systems allows architects and designers creative freedom whilst maximising energy efficiency. read more
Flooring Systems
Forbo Flooring Systems, a global player in high-quality commercial and residential floor coverings, focuses on environmentally friendly, functional and design-oriented linoleum, project vinyls, entrance matting systems and flocked carpeting for the commercial, educational, healthcare and industrial applications. read more
Ultra-compact Surface
With the aim of becoming a global leader in architecture and design for indoor and outdoor spaces, Cosentino has created Dekton, an ultra-compact surface. Dekton uses a sophisticated mixture of raw materials that are used in the production of glass, porcelain materials and quartz surfaces. read more
Contemporary Bathrooms
In partnership with Daniel Debiase and Federico Sandri, Hatria presents a new concept for modern bathrooms—a made-to-measure range of sanitary ware called Abito. It allows for customisation that caters to personal styles. read more
Ventilated Façades 
Ventilated façades have become one of the building envelopes of choice for architects. They are flexible, easy to install and aesthetically pleasing, and can lead to greater energy efficiency. Durable, high-quality façades can contribute to lowering life cycle costs of a building. read more
Hand Shower Technology
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Sliding System

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Construction Industry Council Annual Conference 2014

The Construction Industry Council (CIC) successfully organised its CIC Conference 2014 on 28 November. The theme of this year’s conference, Construction Innovation, and Safety Enhancement for the Betterment of Our Society, was well received by 200 delegates from various countries. read more

Handover ceremony of China Green Building (Hong Kong) Council

On 6 December 2014, China Green Building Council (CGBC (HK)) organised the handover ceremony at the City University of Hong Kong, under the witnesses of representatives from the council. read more

International Heritage Conservation Conference 2015

The Royal Chartered Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has concluded its International Heritage Conservation Conference 2015 held on 9 January 2015 at The Hong Kong Jockey Club, Happy Valley Racecourse. read more

2015 Malaysia University - Industry Green Building Collaboration Symposium

Held on 20–21 January 2015, the 2015 Malaysia University-Industry Green Building Collaboration (2015 MU-IGBC) Symposium was successfully concluded at the auditorium of the Faculty of Engineering (Fakulti Kejuruteraan), Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) with the theme Facilitating University-Industry Partnerships. read more

Dialogue on Engineering Solutions for Hotels

UTC Building & Industrial Systems, a unit of United Technologies Corporation and a major global provider of aerospace systems and building technologies, launched its inaugural seminar on engineering solutions for hotels in Singapore on 18 December 2014 to highlight the technology and engineering solutions available for hotels to be Greener, smarter and safer. read more

Ashui Awards 2014 – Architect of the Year and Building of the Year

On 31 December 2014, has announced the voting results of Ashui Awards 2014 for Architect of the Year and Building of the Year. With 84.14 percent of the vote, Nguyen Hoa Hiep (a21 studio) was awarded the Architect of the Year 2014 while House for Trees (designed by Vo Trong Nghia Architects) was awarded Building of the Year 2014 with 51.72 percent votes. read more


BCA launches new initiatives for inclusive living in Singapore

The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) has introduced new initiatives that will bring Singapore a step closer to an inclusive living environment. read more
Smarter design for better urban housing
On 24 November, HASSELL conducted a discussion on the challenges that urban cities are currently facing and the innovative approaches that will help unlock their economic, social and cultural potential. The event was held in their headquarters in Shanghai, China. read more
President’s Design Award 2014
In its ninth year, the President’s Design Award is administered by the DesignSingapore Council of the Ministry of Communications and Information, and the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). Sixteen jurors from nine countries, including Singapore, assessed 133 eligible nominations before making the final cut. read more
3rd Annual Commercial Building Architecture-Designing-Performance Summit and 2014 Asia Pacific Green-CREP Award Ceremony
The 3rd Annual Commercial Building Architecture-Designing-Performance Summit and 2014 Asia Pacific Green-CREP (Commercial Real Estate Best Practices) Award Ceremony was held from 12 to 13 November. read more
RICS and HKIS co-organise the RICS HKIS Joint Valuation Conference 2014
Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and The Hong Kong Institute of Surveyors (HKIS) jointly organised the RICS HKIS Joint Valuation Conference 2014. This was their first collaboration for a valuation conference in recent years. read more
Green Building Award 2014
Well-attended by over 400 industry practitioners and nominees and with the presence of Paul Chan Mo-po, MH, JP, secretary for development, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government, as the guest-of-honour of the gala dinner and the honorary advisor of the jury panel, the Green Building Award (GBA) 2014 award presentation was held on 20 November 2014 at Conrad Hong Kong Hotel. read more
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Finalists announced for WorldGBC’s Green Building Leadership Awards

WorldGBC has revealed the finalists for the inaugural Asia Pacific Regional Network Leadership Awards in Green Building. The biennial awards honours outstanding organisations for their commitment to sustainability, and celebrates innovative Green building projects.

Singapore’s Vertical Garden Enters the Guinness World Records as the Largest

A vertical Green wall built on the façade of the Tree House Condominium in Singapore was officially recognised by the Guinness World Records as the world’s largest vertical garden.

Update from Thai Green Building Institute

The Thai Green Building Institute (TGBI) has announced that it is preparing the TREES (Thai’s Rating of Energy and Environmental Sustainability) standard for core and shell, and existing buildings. This new Green building rating system is scheduled to be completed in 2015.

Richard Rogers to chair the World Architecture Festival 2014 super-jury

The World Architecture Festival (WAF) has unveiled this year’s ‘super jury’ comprising of a selection of the world’s leading architects and designers, led by renowned British architect Richard Rogers. He will be joined on the super-jury by Rocco Yim, Julie Eizenberg, Enric Ruiz Geli and Peter Rich.

Shigeru Bayan Wins 2014 Pritzker Architecture Prize

This year’s Pritzker Prize goes to Shigeru Ban, a Tokyo-born, 56-year-old architect with offices in Tokyo, Paris and New York. He is the seventh architect from Japan to receive the honour, which will be officially awarded on 13 June 2014, at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan Joins with AECOM to Advance Sustainable Development in Malaysia
[Press Release] Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan (Federal Territory Foundation), a foundation body under Malaysia’s Ministry of Federal Territories, and AECOM signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to establish a center of excellence in Greater Kuala Lumpur Klang Valley (Greater KL/KV) to advance sustainable urban development in Malaysia. 
Danfoss Turbocor and Haier Build Highly Efficient Air Conditioning Systems for Kai Fu Jian Guo Hotel
[Press Release] As for energy consumption in hotel operations, air-conditioning systems take a large proportion due to long operation times, i.e. running around the clock. Statistics show it accounts for 30-50 percent of the energy consumption of the hotel.

World Architecture Festival Award Entries Now Open
The World Architecture Festival (WAF)—the largest, live architectural awards programme—has opened the entries for WAF 2014. The awards set the benchmark for architectural excellence, where talented architects from all over the world gather to showcase their building designs to more than 2,500 architects, clients and journalists from over 65 countries. 

Philips Creates Interactive Lighting Experiences at i Light Marina Bay 2014
Philips has provided LED technology to two installations at i Light Marina Bay, a sustainable light art installation festival which runs from 7 to 30 March 2014 at Marina Bay Waterfront, Singapore. The two installations are “BEAT” by design and engineer firm Arup, and “iSWARM” by the Singapore University of Design and Technology (SUTD). Philips is also the festival’s Sustainability Workshop Partner.
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