"Drifting across the vast space, silent except for the wind and footsteps, I felt uncluttered and unhurried for the first time in a while, already on desert time."
- A quarantined perspective from Wanderlust: A History of Walking
To know and connect to one's land and culture, reaching the beyond, one’s true ethics and origin shall be regained. The true meaning of understanding and knowing your land and culture is the biggest treasure one can find. This project aims to introduce the honest beauty of the Egyptian land, as honest as it can be, with an approach of building a sustainable eco-lodge as a way of appreciating, understanding, and connecting the visitors with the surrounding environment.
Through the application of the three E's: experience, education and entertainment; the project introduces an assorted collection of activities in a Complex Camp with a futuristic sustainable approach. The objective is to attract many visitors into experiencing the holy land of Sinai (in Egypt) in a different and modern way, understanding its culture through various entertainment activities with the help of its true authentic and honest surrounding sustainable materials. Knowing that this land provides a lot more than its historic background, we are looking to include natural materials and accessories provided by the locals in Sinai, along with sustainability, we are looking to build an honorable bond between the locals and the visitors.
Location of the project: South of Wadi El-Arish, South Sinai, Egypt. (Considered as the center of Sinai, connecting both the north and south parts)
Camp name definition and inspiration:
"Dai" means the faint brightness of the moon. Also known as "Dai of the moon" in arabic. The reason the name was chosen was because it holds a powerful meaning by bringing the light in the darkness; which works exceptionally well with the chosen location that struggled in the past; yet now holds many memories and stories to be passed on to the next generations. It is also my older sister's name.
Everything in the universe functions differently when alone, yet together, they function in a connected manner, having one goal. Similar to the stars who come from different galaxies and have different brightness, yet together in groups they form theories, stories, functions, and meaning. The Pegasus Square is an example of this theory, whom to reach, one must pass through the North star, known as Polaris.
Polaris (North star) is the only star that has a fixed location all year long, where all stars orbit around it. It is one of the brightest, knowing that theoretically the further you go apart from it, the darker and more contoured the atmosphere is. Polaris star is not visible only in the Earth’s southern equator, it is where the brightness of the star with all its rays vanishes. Meaning that geometrically it is the center that connects all objects and is where all items meet.
From this began the planning of the layout of the plan, highlighting and positioning the Polaris star as the middle spot where everyone meets at the end. Meaning that all activities are positioned around it, visitors are orbiting it, and it is the highlight of the camp.
Zone 1: Polaris Restaurant
-Bright zone (represents Polaris star)
-Where all visitors meet
-Located in the center of the camp
-Connected to the outdoors through panoramic views
Zone 2: South Gallery
-Darkest zone (respresents stars that are only visible in the earth's southern equator)
-No opening (windows) showcasing the outdoors, this is due its location being at the south part of the plan's layout. For this Polaris is not visible (restaurant and roof) yet still there.
-Takes visitor on a historical journey (in South Sinai) through several technological mediums used.
-Can be accessed by the camp's guests or outsiders (has its own lobby)
Zone 3: Accommodating Hut
- A bright zone (represents orbiting stars in the universe that is visible in the sky)
-Where guests are accommodated, can
-Includes indoor and outdoor private stargazing areas.
Zone 4: Polaris Roof
-Brightest zone of the whole camp (represents Polaris star)
-Located in the center of the camp
-Most zone connected to the outdoors
-The zone where all visitors meet
-The zone consists of an outdoor seating area, stargazing and capsule ride.
“Dai Camp” finally aims to educate the future generations in a journey and a un-forgetful experience in many different ways, hoping to create an advanced and a more united tomorrow, in a land full of history and holiness.
Site area: 21000sq. m
-Touch screens (including Ubi's systems)
-Virtual reality peek holes in South Gallery for a 3D virtual experience in the past
-Smart window glass system (Electrochromic glass)
-Smart HVAC system
-Location management system for light foot-printed location guidance, for the guests to be guided around the camp
-Found in natural material being used in construction and claddings (for sustainable treatment):
*Using slate mortar in wall plastering (which is easily found in Sinai), it is cheap and environmentally friendly as well as it has thermal insulation properties.
*Using natural stones found in the area from hills and mountains, used as wall treatments and in floorings
*Windows, doors and furniture are manufactured in Dahab Town by the locals
*Using Palm stalks and palm fronds, along with the reeds that grow around the oasis, in designing some furniture pieces and lighting units.
*The dependance on natural light and candles rather than artificial allows :
2-More connection to nature
3-Less energy consumption
4-Wider feeling of space
-Using solar water heatings to provide the ecolodge with hot water
Project designed and presented by: Taif Al Mokadem
-Faculty of Arts & Design - Interior Department - MSA University -
Under the supervision of:
-Assoc. Prof. Dr. Rasha El Zeiny,
-Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hoda Madkor
-Assoc. Prof. Dr. Dalia Ezzat
-LA. Asma Awad
-LA. Ingy El Zeini
Dai Complex Camp in Sinai by Taif Al Mokadem in Egypt won the WA Award Cycle 36. Please find below the WA Award poster for this project.
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