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Slice of paradise – tropical villas in Bali

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Resort-style living in Bali by Landi Designs

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With the right architecture and landscape design, even a wetland can become a tropical paradise. These Bali villas in the town of Seminyak sit on reclaimed land that was once laid out in rice fields.

Architect Alessandro Landi was commissioned by local developer Much More Bali to design a series of luxury villas that would convey the essence of Bali as a peaceful, tropical resort. Privacy and seclusion were essential, and so too, was a sense of spa-like tranquillity. And each villa needed to have its own pool and landscaped outdoor living area.

Landi says because the site is long and narrow, the eight villas were laid out in pairs, on an east-west axis.

"This ensured there would be sun on the gardens and pools all day. It also meant the villas could benefit from cross ventilation," the architect says.

The villas, which vary in size, feature a steel construction, but this is concealed. Posts and I-beams are wrapped in bamboo timber, so the buildings have a warm, natural look that complements the lush tropical landscaping.


Landi also introduced two feature walls to each villa, which are clad in rectangular dark granite slabs in a honed, polished or flamed finish. These are laid in a random pattern.

"The contrasting textures add plenty of visual interest," he says. "So, too does the oblique angle of the walls. The larger, central wall is wider at the top, and tapers towards the ground, while the other wall does the reverse. The visual weight of the stone is balanced by the irregular geometry of the walls, so there is a sense of lightness. The walls appear to support the roof, which slants up to open the interior to the courtyard and sky."

The rest of the interior is also defined by contrasting textural elements, which include backlit onyx, glass and mirrored wall panels, fossilised wood and bamboo bases for coffee tables, and ebony veneer. All the materials provide a strong visual link with the outdoors.

"Being inside a villa is like being in an outdoor room, especially with all the doors open," says Landi. "Wherever possible I have used frameless glass doors to enhance this seamless connection. And with tiered landscaping right around the villas, residents are enveloped by greenery."

Landi also designed the villas so there is a clear line of sight from one end to the other. With the doors between rooms open, there is an uninterrupted view right through the interior to the outdoors.

Although the crisp, modern architecture has a strongly linear look, this is softened by the furnishings. Area rugs, and coffee tables are mostly circular, and chairs, tables, beds and pendant lights have rounded, sculptural forms.

In the bedroom suites, highly polished surfaces, including black glass wall panels, help to reflect light. In one room, backlit onyx creates a dramatic headboard.

With full-height glass walls, bathrooms are also light filled. The extensive use of transparent glass is contrasted by dark granite and black glass.

First published date: 30 July 2012

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Credit List

Architect Alessandro Landi, Landi Designs (Bali)
Builder IWM Constructions
Decking Merbau timber
Doors and windows Frameless tempered glass by Dekkson with OMG hardware
Flooring Polished Black Impala granite
Wallcoverings Granite feature walls in polished/flamed/honed finish; mirror; ebony veneer
Paints Kem-Tone
Home audio Harman Kardon
Furniture Custom made designs by Landi Designs
Paintings Alessandro Landi