chiangmai life architects introduces the bamboo meditation cathedral & sunset sala, located on top of a hill in northern chiangmai, thailand. enjoying vast views of the unique mountainous surroundings, the project has been designed to integrate harmoniously within the environment, looking like it emerged from the ground.
bamboo meditation cathedral
all images courtesy of chiangmai life architects
at first, the client requested a gathering space where she and her family could enjoy the sunset together. therefore, chiangmai life architects started the project with the design of the ‘sunset sala’. being an active member of the buddhist community, the client then commissioned the creation of a structure that facilitates spiritual practice. consequently, the meditation cathedral was added to the project, along with bathrooms and a small M&E mushroom.
the design seeks to emulate the mountain range and the rolling hills, with the buildings molding into the scenery as if they grew there themselves. to lift the practitioner’s feelings, the meditation space was designed like a dome of a cathedral. in order to achieve this cathedral feeling, the architects used bundled bamboo to form arches that serve as the structural support of the whole structure, just like in roman or gothic temples. the arches carry a floating umbrella-shaped roof with skylights that allow natural light to permeate the interior.
bamboo meditation cathedral & bathrooms
next to the meditation space is a bathroom with showers, topped with a striking bamboo roof and adorned with decorative bottles on its adobe walls. next to the bathroom is another smaller bamboo building in the form of a mushroom that hides the water tank and an even smaller one for the well.
bamboo meditation cathedral connecting to the sky
the main species of bamboo that were used in this project are thyrsostachus species like th. oliveri and th. siamensis. other bamboo types that were featured include dendrocalamus asper and bamboosa spp. all bamboo was well selected by age and treated by soaking in a borax/boric acid solution.
cupola with skylights
sunset sala & bamboo meditation cathedral
bamboo & earth bathrooms next to the bamboo meditation cathedral
name: bamboo meditation cathedral & sunset sala
architecture office: chiangmai life architects (markus roselieb & tosapon sittiwong)
location: chiangmai, thailand
designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.
edited by: myrto katsikopoulou | designboom