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British starlets narrowly miss out on Moroccan resort complex

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London-based Moxon Architects has been pipped to the post in the race for another major scheme in Morocco

The AJ 40 Under 40 practice, which came third in the high-profile competition to overhaul the historic Place Lalla Yeddouna, in the Medina of Fez in March (AJ 22.03.11), was again named as an unlucky runner-up - this time in the contest to design a clubhouse complex next to the coast in Safi.

Understood to have made it into the last three, the practice eventually lost out to a local firm in the battle for the £30 million project which will include new flats, guest accommodation and sports and leisure facilities.

Moxon in Morocco

The architect’s view

Practice founder Ben Addy describes Moxon Architects’ approach to the contest submission

‘The masterplan for the site can be understood on two levels; the external relationship of the complex to the scale of the landscape, and internal relationships between buildings and open spaces within the complex. 

‘By employing a strategy of simultaneous excavation and addition, the masterplan is designed around a stratified manipulation of the architectural topography in nested into the landscape topography of the site.

‘The estate is defined by hard and soft landscaping, with layered excavations following the natural shape of the landscape.  Gardens and outdoor leisure areas are integrated into the slope of the site, maximising views outwards to the coast and towards Safi.

At the scale of individual buildings, the project proposes a balance between private and public spaces, with guest accommodation and residences built around private outdoor spaces.  The clubhouse comprises a range of hospitality and guest facilities, accommodating events at all scales, from major events to more intimate meetings and gatherings.’




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