Designers Create Unique Retreat In Japan’s Hokkaido Mountains Using An Algorithm

·1-min read

Two architects have unveiled a conceptual design for a tranquil Japanese retreat using an algorithm.

Nestled in the northern mountain range of Hokkaido in Japan, YEZO's designers have taken into consideration its dramatic surroundings and applied an ecological approach, resulting in an experimental structure that creates a sanctuary in nature.

Designed by Kristof Crolla and Julien Klisz of Japanese architecture studio Laboratory for Explorative Architecture & Design (LEAD), YEZO is defined by an elegantly curving roof with a wooden underbelly of structural members that are suspended from the chimney.

The studio created an algorithm to define the shape of the building and prioritised the construction of the project. By following this algorithm, every single structural member that defines the roof curve can be constructed from a single mould. Each piece is a glue-laminated, or GluLam, timber beam used at a different angle or cut at a different length. This means that the curve, which came from the single mould, is the only unchanging variable between every wooden beam.

“Its lean tectonic system combined with only a most essential spatial programme redefines the modern meaning of true luxury,” LEAD explains. “A place and time for quiet reflection and private enjoyment in a setting defined by wood, stone, water, and light, surrounded by ever-changing natural beauty.”

Although the designers planned the retreat to allow visitors to focus on natural beauty, it is difficult not to appreciate the interiors.

The concrete chimney acts as the focal point of the interior space while glass walls come up to meet the wooden umbrella.

The interior is rendered with a warm colour palette that matches the GluLam that drove the design and helps you feel connected to the architects’ intention.