Bangkok experiences a tropical climate, with high humidity and warm temperatures year round. Typically, this has led to people’s retreat to air-conditioned, artificial environments. Siamese Gioia is a medium-scale condominium project that focuses on creating an improved micro-climate, more conducive to out-door living with natural cooling systems and strategic shading, and aims to improve the internal quality of the typical condominium typology.
This project consists of 2, 7 storey blocks with 168 units. The site demanded that the form be split in two, with a clear void cut in between. The apartment floors were lifted to create space on the ground floor for landscaping, ’water-scaping’, and shaded, shared spaces to flow beneath both blocks. An additional shared space is allocated on the roof in the form of a planted roof garden.
Siamese Blossom employs the ‘stack effect’ to create natural air flow through each block, providing each apartment with cool, fresh air. Air is drawn up from the cool, ground floor area, across the shaded surfaces of the ‘water-scaping’, and up via glass-roofed atriums located in the heart of each block. The glass roofs above the atriums provide large amounts of natural day-lighting to the inner most areas of the apartment blocks.
Shade is crucial in Bangkok due to its harsh and direct sunlight. Shade is created for each apartment by the use of light-weight concrete fins which also serve to provide privacy. These concrete fins were inspired by solid timber casement windows used in the early 1900’s in Thailand, designed to provided shading and privacy, whilst still allowing ventilation.
From the outset, the architecture of this design has been intrinsically linked to its climate. With the correct understanding and synchronization between architecture, landscaping and local climates, a more comfortable environment can be engineered and enjoyed.