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By Subhasish Chakraborty
If ever there was an Eden on Earth, it had to be the Quintas De Obidos Country Club.one of Portugal’s most renowned eco-friendly resort,s located on Portugal’s famed Silver Coast – a region that happens to be one of Portugal’s most beautiful and unspoilt,
In all there are 79 outstanding villas spread over an area of 140 acres in a natural lake setting. This one-of-its-kind resort has truly redefined eco-tourism in Portugal. The Silver Coast is beginning to make its presence felt as one of Europe’s most preferred holiday destinations. The Quintas De Obidos Country Club has roped in Jessica Kurten – world’s number one lady show jumper as their brand ambassador. And why not?
The unprejudiced eye of the architect echoes in every nook and corner of the resort. Here at the Quintas De Obidos Country Club, the virtually impossible seem graceful and easy and I think that’s what architecture is all about. The resort is a supreme adjustment to opportunity and local conditions. All attention has been concentrated on, not collecting art, but on creating art, like one beautiful picture.
Surrounded by innovative designs, designs that are unusual and minimalist, designs that celebrate, which do not necessarily conform to any set pattern, finishes that are playful – is the joy that this resort breathes into her spaces. Be it the floors, walls, ceilings, doors or even the simple framed windows, the resort manages to evoke in the most mundane things a vibrancy and a happy mood, that reach out to greet you the moment you step inside.
We were lucky to meet master architects – Miguel Saraiva and Costa Lima at the resort. None of us had ever seen a resort of this magnitude before and in course of our dinner with the lights dimmed, the candles aglow, a cosy dinner served, Miguel emotionally remarked – “I feel architects tend to design interiors that are austere – decorators on the other hand produce interiors that are dramatic, often with no sense of discipline. Here though, the synthesis has been perfect, stunning and dignified showcase that exudes an aura of ease”.
Confronting the challenge of developing an eco-tourism project of this magnitude, it is vital to find a language, which would incorporate the traditional architecture within the elements of a contemporary construction. I have been fortunate to personally see my California based aunt who is a high profile architect specializing on tribal vernacular architecture struggle with her pet projects in the North Eastern state of Assam. Most architects find the task of incorporating a traditional vernacular architecture into an eco-tourism initiative challenging. The bottomline is to be faithful to the characteristics of traditional architecture, whilst having regard for the link between interior and exterior spaces and the design brief.
What is so striking about the Quintas De Obidos Country Club is that the landscape for most part is of undulating terrain, which is more prominent in certain areas. And the eye of the architect here has been to incorporate the various plots with diverse possibilities of orientation. As architect Miguel candidly admits – “Opting for an architecture clearly rooted in a traditional Portuguese style was really a challenge”.
Quintas De obidos, email firstname.lastname@example.org