Utopia Blu: The landscape of an artificial sea ― 

The brand-new Utopia Blu hotel is in Tigaki, on the mainland of Kos Island. The project is developed on a 35.000m² property, with 10.000m² of buildings accommodating 258 guests. The owner’s vision was to create a complex dominated by water, creating an “artificial sea” throughout.

The design decisions by Elastic Architects, were largely informed by the natural surroundings of the new hotel. Scarce buildings and a dominant nature prescribed a mild architectural gesture: All buildings keep a simple form and an intimate scale, while their arrangements and positioning of swimming pools create an attraction both for the hotel visitors as well as for the local community at large.

This building infrastructure aim to recreate a small community, a tiny “settlement” revolving around the water features – always dominant and interesting. Thus, the complex consists of smaller compounds, each containing and surrounded by ample swimming pools. The central courtyard contains all the traditional features of a village square with a church, tall trees, a coffee house, and shops.

The façade design was mainly informed by the desire for privacy, and it further features locally prominent materials of Kos Island. Marked axes become the principal design tool, in-between which the rooms are placed in a recess; the axes further stand out, clad in the local stone of Kos.

Exceptional care was given to the shading of the buildings and outdoor areas: The orientation and arrangement of the buildings, the convenient placement of vegetation, and the use of shading devices contributed to the creation of shaded areas, wherever needed. Aluminum pergolas, both on the horizontal and the vertical plane, integrate all separate volumes, acting both as a shading device and as dividers between the rooms. The idea relies on the placement of consecutive horizontal and vertical beams with intervals in-between, without any visible joinery. This design succeeds both in providing shade and in allowing the free flow of air in all directions.

The chosen white and off-white hues for the building surfaces help in the smooth integration of the complex in its environment; this, complemented with the contrasting dark brown color chosen for the aluminum components, resulted in a natural, earthy palette, establishing a perpetual conversation with the blue color of the water.

For the exceptionally high quality of its aluminum systems, developed by Exalco, the hotel was awarded with Bronze at the Aluminium in Architecture Awards 2021.

Architecture – interior design: Elastic Architects

Colors: Superdurable Powder Coatings Interpon D2525  Structura RAL 1019 / Code : YD319F, Structura RAL 8025 /Code: YM325F

Aluminum Systems: Exalco