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  • A new model for understanding the hospitality industry

    Originally developed as part of a system of 3 hotels in the Peruvian Amazonia, Acqua then evolves as an independent concept in which we seek to challenge the status quo of the hospitality industry by proposing a new way of building but also relating to the environment and the local community.

    An innovative approach for the hotel industry: how not to destroy the environment

    Conceived for Madre de Dios in Peru, the prototype is replicable in other areas of calm waters. The hotel industry tends to destroy its core business. When it comes to a paradise on earth, each new hotel project destroys not only the physical environment but also the social fabric that you seek, or should seek, appreciate. Acqua tries to rethink the relationships between a hotel and its surroundings on both levels. Local craftsmen would build the boats with the same technology they use for traditional peque-peque, and would also be trained to build the rest of the room; the traction structure would be brought from abroad. The result is a cutting-edge design that combines tradition and innovation into a proposal that definitely is a game changer in the industry.

    The local community as a key aspect of the proposal

    Acqua is a self-contained system as the underlying idea is not to leave a negative impact on the environment or society. Not only will the local community be involved in the construction, but also in day-to-day operations in a fair trade basis. The goal also is that having the units in such remotes areas the travellers -not tourists, would have the perfect chance to interact with the locals to learn about the culture and their ancient knowledge about medicine, plants, shamans: a more conscious life creating awareness about the environment and the local communities. The goal is to have the visitors to connect and to pursue a life of just practices. The goal is for visitors to connect and follow a life of fair practices.

    A hotel with minimal footprint and an environmentally sound strategy

    Acqua has a minimal ecological footprint, preserving the natural landscape; Uses bodies of water without any waste disposal and the coasts are used only as a starting point for exploring and hiking awareness.” Cradle-to-crib cycles are implemented to minimize negative impact and reduce waste creation. Leed’s certified traction structure is a sturdy material, but when the end of the cycle comes, it would be easy and economical to move it for recycling in a suitable facility, leaving no negative impact. Acqua’s ability to move improves the chances of minimizing the impact on the area for both fauna and flora, as it would only be in a certain area for a certain number of days or even hours.


    client >
    location >
    Madre de Dios, Puerto Maldonado, Peru
    built area >
    – / –
    built area >
    163 m2 / 1.755 sqft
    project >
    construction >

    status >

    author > Oliverio Najmias
    collaborator > Santiago Passalacqua


    2017 XVI La Bienal Internacional de Arquitectura de Buenos Aires