Standing out from the crowd in Bangkok is no mean feat, but this is precisely the intention of the Synthesis (SDA)-designed extension at Central World Shopping Center. Entitled The Groove, the 12,000 sq m expansion project centered on 4,000 sq m of enclosed retail and 8,000 sq m of eateries and bars, all encased in a glossy aluminium skin to make the development a recognisable feature on the busy streets of Bangkok.
The façade is devised of a backlit aluminium panel system featuring integrated LEDs and graphics to create an elegant, gently glowing exterior. In light of the strong position of the development facing the humming Ploenchit Road and BTS Skytrain, the façade was inspired by pedestrian and vehicular flow, sporting horizontal lines and changing levels.
Internally, the layout takes its cue from the intimacy of Bangkok’s Sois - small offshoot streets which branch off busier, much wider roads. Therefore a generous number of open-air restaurants and bars have been incorporated into the expansion, set within a protected courtyard.
A system of trellises enables air to flow through this internal courtyard, creating ambient lighting, dappled light and a pleasant climate for all users. The trellis can be retracted and extended depending on the required light intensity or in response to heavy rainfall. Hanging plants and grounded planters can also be found throughout the courtyard space, helping to maintain a comfortable climate within the dining area.
Client: Central Pattana Pnc
Design Team: Alvin Huang, David O Wolthers, Filipa Valente, Chia-ching Yang, Behnaz Farahi, Timothy Harmon, Joseph Sarafian
Local Architect: A49 Architects, Thailand
Local Architect: Foundry Space, Thailand
Landscape Architects: Trop Design, Thailand
Mechanical Engineer: MITR, Thailand
Structural Engineer: Doctor Kulsiri Chadrangsu - Ferrand