This landscaping had to respond to the two facets of a mountain 'chalet' - a retreat for a renowned fashion designer that also serves as a venue for corporate gatherings. Adapting the spaces to withstand the harsh climate was a further consideration in the design. The entire garden was finished in one material - local 'kour' stone - in different textures. Its centrepiece is the lower terrace, which is defined as two simple rectangles, one of them raised as a water mirror (the swimming pool in disguise), the other a level plane with integrated recessed sitting areas equipped with fireplaces.
Elie Saab Mountain Retreat Presentation Panels. Courtesy of Architect. Geneva: Aga Khan Award for Architecture, 2007.
In the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, projects enrolled in the nomination process are documented by the architect(s). In addition to submitting images and drawings, architects are asked to complete a detailed questionnaire pertaining to use, cost, environmental and climatic factors, construction materials, building schedule, and, more importantly, design concepts and each project's significance within its own context and to present the project in two A3 panels.