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Portico, Prospect Bay Beach, St. James, Barbados

Wednesday 04 May 2011

Contemporary meets island living

All images by Paul Clemence 
Your comments on this project

No. of Comments: 2

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23/05/11 Marcus, Taylor
This is the most beautifully executed project on the island, and my family was considering buying one of the apartments. Since I am pretty familiar with this building, and still thinking about it, I wanted to say that yes, it is a mostly modern building, in a stunning kind of way, but the architect uses local materials, traditional colors and does an amazing job of adjusting modern architecture to the Caribbean environment. He respects the fact the this is the Caribbean, to the maximum extent. The architectural standards of the project haven't been achieved anywhere else on this island yet, so our biggest praise goes to the brave idea and flawless execution.
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10/05/11 Ryan, Even Yehuda
As a Barbadian born architect I fail to see the connection between traditional and modern, at least from the images supplied here, in term of materials and tectonics etc.

This is a beautifully executed project, that is given, but the architect's attempt to claim some resolution between traditional and modern architecture is patronizing and full on bullsh@t. Just call it what it is: modern architecture on an island, period.
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Local architect realises Portico - a sleek, luxury condominium complex in Barbados 

Challenging traditional norms and introducing modern architectural concepts has always been a test for any architect. A luxury condominium on Prospect Bay Beach in St. James, Barbados, manages to elegantly combine contradicting concepts: traditionalist British-Caribbean architecture of the island with sleek lines and open spaces, characteristic of modern design, as well as local landscape and natural materials with man-made ones, and to do so by having ultimate comfort in mind.

The building was designed by the architect Roldano Bellori, known for his blend of modern architecture that utilise straight lines open spaces, as well as his respect for existing local traditional style, and always faithful to his passion for local landscape and natural materials.

Portico, which is opening its doors this year, is ideally located on the west coast of Barbados and draws attention from the outside by its sleek glass-curtain wall. On entrance once comes to a glass bridge above a reflecting pool, where water and stone organically merge with concrete and glass, replicating the surrounding outdoors in a contemporary way.

“I have tried to combine local traditional architectural style with big spaces and sleek lines, and I enjoyed playing with different materials, such as stone, wood, concrete and glass. But most importantly, I have attempted to create an open-spaced dwelling that includes the stunning landscape you see outside the window,” says the architect.

Vast spaces throughout the building add to the feeling of untamed nature and modernistic architecture blended into one - including a five-story open lobby, where the elevator stands out as an independent volume, yet integrated into the whole. Glass balustrades and bridges on each floor offer another level to the feeling of freedom one experiences inside the building by introducing a deeper dimension of invisible elegance.

The stairs, a sculptural composition in steel and glass, add drama to the lobby, majestically connecting the floors. “The stairs became a piece of art I was looking to place in the vast space in the middle. I decided to play with characteristic features of stairs usually find on boats, but I constructed them from light materials, so that they blend in with the theme of the building, but playfully stand out at the same time,” explains Bellori.

Key Facts

Status Completed
Value 0(m€)
Were you involved in this scheme?
Roldano Bellori

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