Project Name: Vaansa Resort
Location: Jim Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand
Architect: Anagram architects
Built-Up area: 57550 sq ft
Year of completion: 2013
At the foothills of the Himalayas, located on the fringe of the ecologically diverse Jim Corbett National Park is Vaansa Eco-resort designed by Anagram architects. Known as the residence of the Great Bengal Tiger, the Jim Corbett National park is spread over 520 square kilometres with an assorted array of landscapes, spanning hills, grasslands and even a lake. Amidst this setting, Vaansa Eco-Resort is a spatial embodiment of an earthy tranquillity.
In a time when the words ‘green’ and ‘sustainable’ are nonchalantly used to describe architecture, the design of Vaansa Eco-Resort effortlessly weaves in the rich biodiversity, the extensive and varied topography, the local culture with the architecture into a minimalistic, yet rustic experience. The resort includes 8 cottages with two bedrooms each, a spa, swimming pool and a restaurant and the endless opportunity to explore the wilderness.
Picture Credits: Anagram architects
Picture Credits: Anagram architects
Site Plan, Vaansa Eco-Resort
Image Credits: Anagram architects
Within the framework of the ecological master plan, the land and topography, water, flora and fauna form the basic elements guiding the design through the site. With these elements as the highlight, the resort is portrayed as an extension of the reserve itself. The site distinctly witnesses the use of three conscious and effective architectural strategies. The first strategy of catchment redistribution is implemented by the identification of catchment areas on site which are further developed by peripheral reed bed plantations and sedimentation tanks for grey water, rainwater run-off and treatment of harvested rainwater.
The second strategy includes contour remediation of the site which was once an agricultural land. This has facilitated the channelisation of surface water run-off into the catchment areas, thus preventing soil erosion and also reducing the speed of the run-off.
The third strategy aims at the restoring the biodiversity of the region. The meticulous and thoughtful landscaping techniques involve the large scale plantation of deciduous trees especially along paths for shading and near the villas to allow passive heating and cooling through the seasons. Local varieties of aromatic plants and herbs have been planted to promote pollination.
The villa is practically masked by the lush greenery it is set amidst, providing a sense of privacy, personal space and security to the visitors. The villas are arranged in clusters, forming common open spaces and an opportunity for interaction amongst the visitors. The single rooms have a continuous green roof that seamlessly blends into the surroundings and also forms multi-function spaces. Locally sourced bamboo and stone that has been excavated on site during re-contouring form the basic building materials for this resort. The locally sourced materials and traditional construction techniques help in diminishing thermal gain in the summer and thermal loss in winter.
Anagram Architects is an architectural design practice established by Vaibhav Dimri and Madhav Raman in New Delhi in 2001. The partners are graduate architects from the School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi. The firm’s practice is diverse and encompasses public infrastructure planning, urban design, architecture, sceneography, broadcast design, furniture design and interior design.