Adventure sports resort realised 30km from Rishikesh on the banks of the River Ganges
Distinguished by its use of stone, reed and steel wire, RLDA's latest project abandons a commonplace aesthetic and other such iconographic elements to distinguish itself in favour of a building that draws its aesthetic from the means, methods and modes of its construction. The adventure sports resort entitled Atali Resort consists of a storage facility and dormitory, a veranda with a tensile roof, that frames the surrounding mountains, a café and 22 cottages for guests.
The first building is made of stone encased in galvanized gabion boxes and tied to each other with steel wire and was constructed predominately out of material that was either found on site or excavated from it. In contrast to the gabion boxes the steel wire rusts, thereby articulating the passage of time and accentuating the buildings verticality.
In the second structure, a tensile roof crowns the conference room above a veranda, adding a whimsical twist to the otherwise stark geometry of the stone building and recalls the numerous tens that dot the river bank.
Connecting there two structures is a two level reed trellis with an elliptical staircase puncturing it. The stair, supported by a pair of stringer beams of a central structural member gives the stair a sense of lightness and enhances it’s a sinuous sculptural quality. It contrasts sharply with both the texture and the 'weightiness' of the adjoining buildings gabions.
The forecourt that connects the two structures of the lower level is recognisable by the brick pavers with aggregate stone infill. It follows the same visual vocabulary as the gabion building and is the primary point of entry.
The cottages that dot the upper levels are characterised by their Spartan luxuriousness. Entered through a private veranda, a central stone wall demarcates the tripartite bathroom from the bedroom. Extensively glazed, they open themselves up to the surrounding landscape. The location of the cottages on the hill was determined by topography, views and distance from other such units.
The metal structure of the cottages was prefabricated off site. The project documents the passage of time, through the use of stone, shadow and steel, and in doing so situates itself within the social and religious continuum of the historic River Ganges.