SRI LANKA RESORT   DESIGN TEAM :  CAMIEL WEIJENBERG, EPP JAAGER, SHARON GUZMAN  A current commission, to design a collection of boutique villas in the remotest reach of the Sri Lankan peninsula, has allowed the firm to explore the relationship between nature and architecture in its most visceral form.    The project started by investigating the landscape, the wind, the sun’s direction and researching existing construction methodologies found in Sri Lanka. This resulted in a curvature shaped building angled towards the bay so that the prevailing wind would create a passively cooled building as well as an orientation towards the bay’s views. A series of long lines organise the natural landscape, and by continuing these lines into the main building and carefully situated clusters of villas, there is an integral relation between the human space and the landscape.  The landscape itself provided inspiration for our choice of building materials.  We wanted to weave in human made structures to appear as if a part of the peninsula. This resulted in the choice of rammed earth as the main building material, as the cliffs, boulders and soil of the peninsula display beautiful red-brown hues of colour. Furthermore, this soil in different forms has been used as a traditional building material in Sri Lanka for hundreds of years.  
  PRINSENGRACHT 436   The long-time occupant of Prinsengracht 436, the Palace of Justice in central Amsterdam, has moved to a new location. The former orphanage dating from the 1660s is planned to be converted into a glorious hotel.  Over the past 350 years the property has seen many transformations from being an orphanage, an emergency hospital, city library and finally the National Court of Justice in 1836. It has been adapted over the centuries with a fluid building style.  Classicism has provided the main influence on the building by architect Jan de Greef. The exceptionally long façade is given definition by its substantial top balustrade as well as Corinthian pillars rising up from the basement level.   When conceptualizing the property’s next transformation, instead of looking at the individual elements and decorations found in the building, we looked at the urban adaptations. As the requirement for the hotel alteration came from the city, not from the existing building or user, our approach was to extend the building from an urban point of view. WEIJENBERG’s additions and alterations were created out of malleable material such as wood. The result is a volume that suggests density and future growth that we believe should allow a glimpse of the future.