Reimaging the design of a large single building, located in Turkistan, subdivided into two separate courtyard buildings to provide a new hotel on one side and an impressive new retail destination on the other.
Turkistan is a small town in the southern part of Kazakhstan. The project site is located in the city center, only 500 meters East of The Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi.
As Turkistan is situated along the ancient Silk Road path, it was interesting to re-discuss the initial project brief to propose a more integrated solution and recall the typical Caravanserai building typology: a huge courtyard surrounded by shops, with rooms on the upper levels. The proposed design includes two opposite entrances located on the smaller sides of a single rectangular building, providing access to the hotel lobby and to the retail area which occupies almost the entire ground floor of the building.
Retail spaces are located around the perimeter of a large central courtyard with a spectacular skylight. The hotel rooms and amenities are located on the upper floors, whilst a main ring circulation is supported by two suspended walkways, one of which hosting a sky bar, allowing more direct connections, both horizontally and vertically. Impressive greenery on the inner façade and above the kiosks are distributed around the inner courtyard to generate an inner secret garden, acting as an attractive buffer between the two complementary functions.
Inspired from the past, the idea of mixing different functions within the same building is prevalent in the market to meet today’s complex economical and societal needs. The proposed hybrid building, a contemporary Caravanserai, has been effectively designed to become a vibrant environment that creates both a desirable destination and an interesting place with relations between the two complementary purposes.