CONTENTS FOREWORD PREFACE INTRODUCTION
7 10 14
TRIDENT GURGAON 137 PILLARS HOUSE CHIANG MAI
HORIZON AND LINE
PARESA RESORT W KOH SAMUI
PARK VENTURES ECOPLEX THE OKURA PRESTIGE BANGKOK PARK HYATT CHENNAI PARK HYATT BANGKOK
92 102 110
THE LEELA PALACE NEW DELHI MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART
LIGHT AND SHADOW
THE OBEROI, GURGAON
LIFE AND RITUALS
PHULAY BAY, A RITZ-CARLTON RESERVE HUA HIN MARRIOTT RESORT AND SPA
NOBLE PLOENCHIT 137 PILLARS SUITES & RESIDENCES
SIX SENSES DESTINATION SPA ROSEWOOD PHUKET
GARDEN OF THE MIND
GARDEN OF THE MIND
PROJECT DATA INDEX PHOTOGRAPHY CREDITS COLOPHON ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
303 304 305 306 307
INTRODUCTION Orderliness is based on rules. But order is based on the
In balance, P Landscape considers the human as nature the
nature of nature. Psychological order is based on rules.
essence in the design of the landscape, uniquely working
Physical order is based on the nature of nature. In physical
with the living and ever changing form of nature as the
order, every grain of sand is the right size, the right colour, the
core material in the production of landscape architecture.
right place. The right weight. One of each. There is nothing
Through the understanding of the nature of nature, allowing
you can refuse in the way of physical order. â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Louis Kahn 1
the qualities of seasons, light (and in turn shadow), local site conditions and ecology to exist, unhampered and capture
The philosophy of P Landscape is embedded in the
these into the design of spaces.
relationship between humans as nature and humans in nature. The exploration of this complex connection threads
The founder of the practice, Wannaporn Pui Phornprapha,
through the past twenty years of this landscape architecture
makes reference to the act of â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;unconscious designâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;,
consideration in design of how unconscious action and thought is transferred into the tangible and physical.
Louis Kahn speaks about the connection of architecture to
The mode in which we inhabit spaces, the patterns of
landscape. The making of places within nature. The concern
unconscious daily rituals of resting, eating and engaging (or
of architecture being a landscape event.2 The link between
disengaging) are a definable component in making place.
the order of nature and the act of superimposing order in
We are configured with nature.
design, in making places. The mind of the architect is inextricably linked to landscape.
This configurative pattern, termed as biophilia, suggests that there is an indelible link between humans and our
In the work of P Landscape, the human in nature needs
emotional response to nature. The genetic code of the
orderliness, through formal architectural devices such
human predisposes one towards the emotional need to ally
as geometry, line, walls and materiality to define and
or be within the natural world. This correlation is drawn out
regulate space. To make places comprehendible, to give
in Thai poetry where recalling experiences and memory of
place is strongly associated with references to nature and landscape.4 Both this phenomenological relationship and
This order imposes itself through design in the form of
the application to localised references is translated into
mathematical geometry, the act of human intervention. The
the practices unique interpretation of the landscape, where
composition suggests hierarchy and gives us the ability to
the garden is considered for its meditative or connected
read space. Geometry implies precision and perfection,
quality, how the ritualistic daily lighting of candles reflects
exactness. Control. How through a series of rhythmic steps
Thai devotion and tradition or the pattern making in sand
we can unconsciously move between places. The wall is the
beds reflect this human need to be in nature, to respond and
physical and visual barrier that forms space and gives the
infinite a human scale. The wall can be protection, create sanctuary, separation and places within spaces.
P Landscape has always valued that within the practice of landscape architecture the ephermeral and the maturing of
Spaces reflect the culture of their place. For centuries,
its work is one the most meaningful elements. The delight in
materials and craft, the act of making is the manifestation
the nature of nature, to germinate, grow, evolve intensifies
of history and traditions. Today, where sophisticated
the experience of the design process. The transience of
fabrication techniques prevail, these can be applied to
beauty as discussed by German-Swiss poet Hermann
replicate and produce contemporary references in contrast
Hesse, becomes an important consideration in how the
to localised, practiced techniques over generations and
places in their work are experienced seasons and years
embody particular meanings. The contrast between the
after completion and through the changes of natures own
traditional porcelain and stoneware ceramic mosaics used
evolutionary patterns.5 Light and the rhythmic environment
as ornament,3 to that of the modern, machined precision
are used to capture this contrast over time. Orientation of
of the granite wall panels and screens referencing the
places, architectural elements employing geometry and line
jasmine flower used in garland making for Thai offerings.
in walls and steps, provide a daily regulation of the nature of
The merging of landscape elements and the artefact.
nature and the continual changes to the landscape.
These concerns entangle through articulate consideration in
In the new century, the mode of thinking about place and the
the work of the practice. A sensitivity to the delights of nature,
important historical associations regarding the role of nature
the changing patterns of vegetation combined with the
are being reshaped. This complexity of modern urban life
reflection of craft and geometry placed in the infinite horizon.
has fuelled the rise of tourism, not purely in the discovery of
The beauty in the degradation of material and changes over
new places, but to seek escape and respite from this frenetic
time, the ageing of simple ceramic tiles creating a pattern on
pace. This need to retreat has given rise to the value of these
a roofline. The indelible link between architecture and nature.
places to escape, the resort, the sanctuary, whether isolated away from or contained within the city.
While the projects completed by the practice span across Asia and the Middle East, the meaning and significance
The attention of the work of P Landscape in this hospitality
for the Thai place, the origin and base of the practice in
sector is grounded in the basis for our increasing desire to
Bangkok is of central importance. It is through a distinct
reconnect with who we are within the landscape, with place.
lens of considering the meaning of one’s own place, namely
This genetic code of our need to be allied with nature, in
Thailand, which then gives meaning to the interpretations
whatever context, overrides the demands of life to bring us
of other contexts and most valuably, the creation of new
back to the landscape, to our identity in place. The human
places. Historically, Bangkok was formed in a patchwork of
reconnecting to nature.
yarns. When Bangkok people designate an area distinctive through a certain function or community, it is described as
In the projects presented, the practice’s intuitive regard for
a yarn or a particular place. These were often diverse and
this relationship of us to nature gives an opportunity to then
varied, characterised by particular features and landscape.
rethink historical traditions, embrace new interpretations in
Bangkokians would recognise and recall their own place, or
craft and decoration, to appropriate itself in this new time,
yarn, through these distinctive features rather than an entire
where the notions of place are being remade but all with the
clear regard of this fundamental constant of the importance of landscape and nature in their realisation.
This deeply engrained sense of identity within distinctive places, memory and experience of the past and the place of
Starting as one individual Khun Pui, her deeply profound
home and of family is used to recreate values and meanings
sensibility to the landscape and this meaning of place,
within the context of each project. How a sanctuary, a place
making places for us to belong, to rejuvenate has filtered
for peacefulness and reflection can be the courtyard of a
through this beginning and embedded itself in the succession
childhood home but in todays experience can be adapted to
of directors and staff who now contribute to the practice of P
become the retreat, the place to recharge and connect back
Landscape. This has grown into a large commercial practice
now with over 140 staff in offices in Bangkok and Chiang Mai. This receptiveness to nature, understanding through
The rapid urbanisation of Asia cities has meant a
memory and this ‘unconscious design’ balances the delicate
reconsideration of place making in the past decades.
act in any architectural endeavor of respecting the existing
Since the early 1980’s the value of tourism to the Thai
place while creating new responses and reinterpretations.
economy surpassed that from agriculture, marking a new transformative change to the composition of cities and
The landscape of the mind of the practice’s founder and then
towns. The promotion of the identity of the krung (the city)
over the years, the collective minds that is the practice of
as a single hierarchical urban structure needed to transform
P Landscape within this book, is not as we first understand
into a multi-layered and complex system. The challenges
the places of the mind or imagination of one individual, but
of preserving the chumchom (local communities) against
a profound exploration in place making. The weaving of the
the prevailing urban development ideologies and the sheer
order in nature and the orderliness inherent in the design of
rate of change is transforming these places. The change
new places creates landscapes that fundamentally connect
of urban places has driven the demand for considering the
all our imaginations and the innate need to be within nature.
orderliness in contrast to the often chaotic and unregulated changes to the nature of cities. The human is more and more in an urbanised nature.
Peter Fisher Editor
CHAPTER ONE WALL 21
The ornamentation of the wall can reflect culture and patterns of nature. The height and materiality of the wall can screen rather than create a complete separation. By allowing glimpses of what is beyond the wall through a level of transparency, this creates as sense of anticipation, mystery, and suspense. Walls play with the human emotion of curiosity; evoking a sense of adventure and discovery through a sequence of spaces set out from beginning, middle to end in a series of courtyards.
TRIDENT, GURGAON Gurgaon, India 2001-2006
In creating the landscape for the Trident Gurgaon, P Landscape
Monochromatic granite pavers surround a sleek, central
created a contemporary landscape inspired by the historic idea
water feature composed of black granite. This leads to the
the ‘universal garden’. The essence of the landscape design
main guest entry, carved into the majestic white walls of this
is a series of connected and enclosed courtyards, leading
visitors from the chaotic urban surroundings into progressively more peaceful and contemplative spaces.
The second enclosure is a large reflective pool surrounded by sculpted grass berms as a soft wall with mature trees in
Located within the Gurgaon’s suburban area, busy roads
the background and encourages guests to contemplate the
surround the hotel, so the wall is created to give both visual
reflection of the sky and the Mughal-inspired architecture.
and physical separation from the noise and bustle of the city. Within the confines of the wall, every aspect of the
The landscaped courtyards continue throughout the hotel,
landscape is controlled and sculpted, forming an enclosed
leading guests through a series of intimate green spaces
defined by lush palm trees and small bubbling fountains enclosed by the exterior walls of the architecture.
The series of courtyards create a strong sequential entry into the project, with each space having its own unique character.
This sequence of courts concludes at the main inner
Water is an essential element by enhancing the hotels
courtyard. Here, guest rooms overlook a grand and serene
tranquil atmosphere with sound and movement.
reflective pond, which cascades down into the swimming pool. This distinction in levels and the tall cascade wall
Four different strategies of enclosure were employed to
creates privacy between the pool and the larger public space
define each space and courtyard, through utilising physical
of the courtyard. In the evening, the decorative lanterns and
walls, landforms, architecture and water cascades. This
fire torches provide a sense of warmth and define the scale
begins at the hotel arrival area, where the design is
of the courtyard into a more intimate experience.
characterised by clean, simple and balanced geometry.
Left Geometric and sculptural landforms act as a wall creating separation from the surrounding city.
Left Refined indentations of the water cascade provide a soothing sound, creating a more dynamic space.
In our urban hotel projects the urban horizon is often like the castellated wall of a fortress. Situating swimming pools on upper floors of the building creates landscapes that give views above and beyond the city skyline that connect with the true horizon of the land.
The horizon is an idea about where land meets the sky and in an urban context, the horizon is a design device. The horizon becomes a line of reflection to create a fantasy landscape, which can reflect an abstract datum that shimmers like a mirage with the slightest breeze.
Left Dense masses of Wedelia trilobata help control erosion.
Right Public facilities are perched high on the hillside above dense tree plantings that visually conceal the steep terrain.
Right Pebble lights add a contemporary pop element to the exterior areas. Geometric forms are prevalent throughout, using a sense of contemporary minimalism to match the architecture style.
PARK VENTURES ECOPLEX & THE OKURA PRESTIGE BANGKOK Bangkok, Thailand 2008-2011
Located at the centre of Bangkok’s central business
articulated building façade. Interpretive graphic design is
district, Park Ventures Ecoplex is an urban development
used throughout the landscape in the form of sculpture,
project that uses an innovative approach to public space
bike racks, engraved motivational messages on the
design, integrating activity, connectivity and sustainability.
stairs and walkways and digital displays of real-time
The site hosts a mixed-use 34-storey complex, consisting
air temperature and quality to heighten environmental
of offices, retail and a luxury hotel, the Okura Prestige
Bangkok. The selection of tall Araucaria heterophylla trees provides The urban park concept in the project was inspired by the
a visually appealing and unique identity to the site. The
idea of bringing nature back to the city. The project has
conical shape of the trees also speaks to the geometry
been the first in Thailand to receive the US Green Building
of the building façade. The open configuration of pines
Council’s LEED Platinum status. The design focuses on
combined with a contemporary palette of regionally
communicating the message that urban sustainability
sourced materials and under storey planting generates a
can be achieved through small-scale interventions of well
unique visual character to the project. Finally, the pines
planned open spaces, in addition to serving as a ‘green
also serve as an effective cooling device, creating a more
lung’ at one of Bangkok’s most congested intersections.
hospitable green space in the heart of Bangkok.
The public square integrates access to Wireless Road,
On the upper floors, the Victor Club terrace provides an
a tree-lined arterial leading to Lumpini Park, one of
intimate garden venue for meetings, and social events.
Bangkok’s largest public parks and green areas, in an
The cantilever pool deck of the Okura Prestige Bangkok,
attempt to elongate and strengthen this green corridor.
one of the first Japanese luxury brands in Thailand, boasts
The landscape design emphasises clean, bold and
a unique structural design, which allows the pool to hang
dynamic geometry while drawing inspiration from the
high above the city and offer majestic views.
Right A large elliptical shaped reflecting pond provides a tranquil environment for the reception and all day dining. Water lilies and a statue of Ganesha create a warm and inviting space.
PARK HYATT BANGKOK Bangkok, Thailand 2014-2017
Located within the centre of the city, the Park Hyatt Bangkok
located within the towerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s interstitial spaces, providing
is a stylish new urban hotel concept. Beginning at a discreet
a variety of options to unwind and enjoy views of skyline.
arrival court, the landscape progresses upwards through
A staircase and large water cascade lead guests down to
a series of intimate terraces, large pool deck and rooftop
the 9th floor amenity and pool terrace area.
lounge, creating a perfect harmony with the complex and iconic architecture of the hotel tower. Due to the location on
The amenity floor is divided into a series of intimate outdoor
one of the busiest intersections in Bangkok, the landscape
rooms, connected by narrow winding pathways shaded by
focuses on the idea of the urban sanctuary, creating a warm,
black bamboo, creating the impression for guests of walking
relaxing retreat from the chaotic city.
in a garden, while at the same time creating privacy between the pool and dining areas. To enhance the separation and
The ground floor arrival area is conveniently tucked away
the garden setting, the landscape steps into different levels,
from the main road and the guestâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s attention is centered on
affording guests in seated areas majestic views over the
a water cascade wall, which provides a gentle and calming
city, while screening views towards the swimming area.
remedy to the sounds of traffic outside. P Landscape
The unique shape of the infinity edge swimming pool was
worked closely with the architects and interior designers,
developed as a response to the dynamic forms of the
in designing a landscape that appears as an extension of
architecture as well as to accommodate a large sun lounge
the building itself. This can be seen in the complex granite-
paving pattern, which is an interpretation of the interior flooring, and the water cascade that extends downwards
Finally, on the 34th to 36th floors, P Landscape helped
from the ceiling.
to create a sequence of intimate and cozy terraces for the penthouse bar and restaurant, contrasting the sleek
The main lobby and reception area is located on the 10th
contemporary architecture with antique Thai planters and
floor, connected to a series of outdoor terraces and lounges
Right The shape of the amphitheater draws inspiration from the form of folded banana leaves. It serves as a multifunctional space hosting lectures, film screenings and other special events.
CHAPTER FIVE LIGHT AND SHADOW 151
Above A glass enclosure is created around the reception lobby from which views extend to a striking blue reflecting pond, the central feature of the hotel grounds.
Above Wedelia trilobata forms a lush green wall.
Above The dark colour of the pool creates a mirror effect on the waterâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s surface. Reflections change throughout the day and night, forming different perceptions of the space.
GARDEN OF THE MIND International Garden Exhibition Berlin, Germany 2014-2017
The Garden of the Mind explores the idea of representation
The mirrors on the north side of the garden are used to
and interpretation of Thai contemporary landscapes. Taking
expand imagination by creating an illusion of a much larger
the concept of the khao mo, the Thai miniature garden, the
garden and an infinite plane of reflecting islands floating in
landscape design is inspired by the geological processes
a body of water. The reflected landscape allows visitors to
that have formed the iconic islands of southern Thailand.
become part of the image and memory of the Garden of the
These are monuments to time and place. They are a product
Mind, and is a source of fun and novelty.
of a process that has left no two alike – they are individuals. The collection of these individuals represents society and
Traditionally, the Thai courtyard garden is a place for quiet
the way in which individuals rely upon—and identify with—
contemplation and stillness and in a contemporary sense the
garden achieves this through the illusion of a plane of static sculptures. In the Garden of the Mind, the design seeks to
The garden is an expression of Thailand’s culture of
expand the imagination of landscape by using scale, material
decoration that frequently touches on ideas of fantasy and
and arrangement of objects.
mystery. Visitors to the garden are encouraged to reflect upon ideas The design of the garden encourages curiosity and
of the self, time and the nature of beauty in the abstract.
interaction by visitors. The arrival courtyard initially appears
The experience is defined by different levels of enclosure;
simple, until a shimmer of light coming from a long water
openings that frame glimpses to another space and reality;
feature that connects to the main garden catches the eye,
reflective surfaces that portray the image of the unseen
representative of how Thailand is often experienced: through
landscape beyond; all leading to a space containing a
unexpected moments of wonder and delight. As visitors
central cluster of shimmering landforms floating upon a still
progress through the garden, they encounter small windows
body of water. It is in the heart of the garden that the visitor is
into the main landscape, playing a game of hide and reveal
invited to linger and gaze upon the sculptural elements and
until they finally arrive at the centre.
the reflected surreal world.