The Montrose Spa Hotel and Resort project is at the tip of the Lustica peninsula at the entrance of the Bay of Kotor, an emerging center for tourism. The steep site is dominated by beautiful indigenous plant life and has a breathtaking panoramic view of the water from every point. For Montrose, there are five guiding principles for the design: frame the views; take an Inside/Outside approach; use a cohesive vocabulary of forms and materials; apply cost management that incorporates innovative technology and sustainable design; and provide luxurious, refined tranquility.
Given the natural beauty of the sea, the vegetation, and the flowing hills, the obvious goal is to make spaces that will embrace and accentuate these, making every resident feel like the sea is just outside their door. Buildings are placed such that views of nature are profound and unobstructed. Walls, floors, and ceilings combine easily and organically to create large frames that promote reflection, inspiration, and relaxation.
Spaces are created to blur the boundaries of interior and exterior, with rooms that seem to stretch towards the horizon and terraces that can be intimate and sheltering. Large expanses of glazing mean the outdoors has more a dynamic impact on the indoors as sunlight shines with different hues and intensities throughout the year. Operable pergolas offer the ability to alter the sense of enclosure, providing more protection from the elements when desired. Green roofs, creative landscaping, infinity pools, and natural stone walls all contribute to the feeling that buildings and nature are one and the same.
A cohesive vocabulary of forms and materials develops a strong sense of place and community. Though its Adriatic roots are evident, Montrose has a timeless and unique character that set it apart and above the standard. Different building types are unified by locally available stone and timber applied with the same sophistication and technique. Whether in a private villa or a hotel guest room, the experiences and sensations of luxury and tranquility will be shared by all. Rather than having different forms for each building type, the project takes a simple base form as a modular core which is then expanded outwards with more of the same module based on programmatic needs.
Sustainability is certainly a driving force in any modern design. Diminishing resources demand a responsible handling of materials and forward-looking solutions to everyday living. New technologies are utilized to improve comfort without costly or wasteful means. Green roofs are used throughout, offering the ecological benefits of absorbing rainwater and mitigating heat loss/gain as well as reducing the visual impact of developing the site.
As a resort, the lasting impression must be one of elegance and tranquility. Whether receiving 5 star treatment at the spa or sitting on a private terrace, everyone at Montrose will feel rejuvenated and refreshed. The calming palette of colors, the exquisite texture of the materials, the spaciousness of the rooms, and all the other aspects of the built environment will cultivate these feelings, create wonderful memories, and produce a sense of anticipation for coming back.
Rather than unsightly superstructures, the site’s 80 room 5 star hotel, 94 branded residences, 90 deluxe villas, social club, beach club, yacht club, and specialty restaurant are spread out, organically, in low lying clusters, creating a charming community. All buildings are situated to capture the spectacular water view, while the cascading landscaping provide the utmost in privacy and seclusion.
Spliting the site into a North Village and a South Village is a special green zone, the “Montrose Gardens”, that maintains and supports nature wildlife and vegetation, makes an attractive connecting corridor from the hotel to the seaside, contains small pavilions for picnics and activities, and provides quaint resting spots for residents and guests to quietly contemplate and appreciate all of the beauty that is Montrose.
Semih Acar, Ozan Ertuğ, Jonas Kirsch, Paul Ragsdale, Aslı Ayvaz, Nihan Metiner
GAD is an contemporary architectural practice based in Istanbul, New York, Bodrum and has been a leader in research and concept design since 1994. The firm is headed by design principle Gokhan Avcioglu, who works with a team of dedicated staff comprising of architects and global collaborators. GAD believes that current architecture and urbanism are influenced by media, culture, software, consumer habits and consumer behaviors. This belief leads the practice's development which is centralized around the understanding of how these factors affect the built environment at differing scales. GAD's success lies in its methodological research of the client's programmatic requirements, its iterative process of digital and physical modelling, and meticulous process innovation. GAD understands that architecture as a practice relies on understanding historical precedent, as well as research, experimentation and continually finding new ways to combine these in compelling and thought-provoking ways.