Nature takes precedence in Dusai Resort & Spa, Bangladesh where the lines and contours of the surrounding tropical rainforest guide the conception and construction of the resort.
Tucked amidst the lush landscapes of a tea plantation nestled in the hilly green heart of Moulvi Bazar, Bangladesh, Dusai Resort & Spa blends in with the traditional villages around it while standing out as a graceful property that promises luxury and adventure within its premises. Designed to fit its context like a glove, its structure which is constructed from a hybrid system of traditional tea estate bungalows and standard concrete construction, hugs the slope of the hills while perching atop the group via slender concrete frames anchored to the ground. For the roof, a mixed truss system of wood and metal complemented by soft thatch cover is employed. Overall, local technology and materials with workmanship sourced from the surrounding villages have been extensively used in this resort.
“Bangladesh is a river delta and the topography is in general, flat. Some hilly areas exist only in the North-East and South-East region. For this reason we only implemented a generally conventional process even in the hilly regions,” VITTI, the architectural firm engaged for this project says. “This project applies a combination of traditional and conventional techniques to make the structures more sustainable and have less adverse impact on its surrounding. Bungalows are built on slope on stilts. Construction on stilt allows drainage to remain uninterrupted, retain natural balance, keep the existing dense vegetation untouched and letting nature dominate over built structures. Therefore, Dusai stands considerably apart from formal construction culture and follows time tested traditional techniques.”
Comprising a main hotel block and individual cottages within its residential complex, the resort also incorporates a swimming pool, a spa, a conference room and indoor and outdoor gaming facilities. “Traditional homestead in Bangladesh features courtyards and clusters. Individual houses are built around courtyards, which in turn form clusters. In Dusai, this principal is followed. Varying functions are grouped around courtyards (valleys) forming clusters aligned with the hilly slope contour,” say the architects.
Upon stepping foot at the resorts, guests are ushered onto a meandering journey across the curved paths, taking them through the hilly landscapes before reaching their suites as a way to allow them to relish in the natural setting. “The internal roads and walkways are placed in a labyrinth loop encompassing the complex allowing to travel the whole area in circular motions,” the architects explain. “The programs in the linear site are distributed into public, semi-private and private zones in a consecutive manner. The public zone of the reception sits at the beginning that leads to a semi private zone with the main hotel and cottages for families along with recreational amenities, such as the sports area and the swimming pool. Following the dining, with golf court view, leads to the spa facilities and towards the private zone consisting of exclusive guest cottages at the end of the complex. Service amenities blend the semi private and private zones and are blend into the surrounding.”
Throughout, the aesthetics of the resort endeavours toward prioritizing nature over built structures. Rooms with large opening apertures towers nature invites the greeneries to step inside while allowing guests to enjoy the spectacular and uninterrupted view of surrounding from their dwellings.
“Nature is not lost in its extravagance but nurtured,” comment the architects. “The existing natural contour and wilderness was respected consciously since the inception of this project while placing structures in master plan. Existing natural open spaces were utilized; smaller segmented and scattered structures were placed within existing trees and natural topography of site. Natural contour guided the overall planning of the project. Building structures on the slopes allowed the structures to blend in with the surrounding, letting the wild green background dominate rather than the structures being overpowering. All the rooms face nature and open up to the surrounding wilderness with a large, barrier-free viewing aperture. The approach of site specific design method makes this complex environment conscious while allowing to create a very unique complex in this region, where nature is the only dominant force.”