Intricate bamboo restaurant forms a sea creature on Maldives beach
Taking the form of an oversized sea creature on a beach in the Maldives, the recently completed Overwater Restaurant, by Atelier Nomadic, certainly cuts a distinctive figure. The project offers a superb example of the efficacy of bamboo as a building material and features an intricate bamboo structure that's topped by an undulating roof.
The variously named Yakitori Restaurant and Bar, Madi Hiyaa or Overwater Restaurant is located on the Maldives' Vabbinfaru Island and is part-inspired by the Pink Whipray which is found in the local waters. It's part of the larger Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru vacation resort.
The restaurant is raised above the sea on a wooden jetty. It's mostly made up of bamboo and offers an open and well-ventilated structure that's defined by complex hyperbolic columns and roof trusses meant to represent the endoskeleton of a ray. It's topped by the ripping roof, which is made up of timber shingles.
"Inspired by the Dhivehi [Maldivian] language, where Madi symbolizes 'ray,' and Hiyaa signifies 'shelter,' the building's name Madi Hiyaa pays tribute to the graceful rays that migrate across the Indian Ocean," explained Atelier Nomadic's press release. "The roof structure is built entirely out of bamboo. Being one of the fastest growing renewable building materials in the world, bamboo is an extremely effective carbon sink, as we need to move towards a future where buildings actually sequester carbon instead of expelling it."
The interior of the restaurant measures 850 sq m (roughly 91,00 sq ft) and includes a bar and service areas, which are clad with black bamboo, contrasting with the pale bamboo columns and timber decking. There are multiple seating areas and a saltwater swimming pool is also installed.
Long utilized in parts of Asia, bamboo usage is on the rise worldwide thanks to its ability to be grown quickly and sustainably and its relative strength, which in some cases can rival steel. It also helps that it looks fantastic, with notable projects including the Grand World Phu Quoc Welcome Center and Casamia Community House.
Source: Atelier Nomadic