Roof Top Qaurantine by Shahad Mohamed Mahdi

Five designs from Tamayouz Design Challenge that blend indoors and outdoors

Round City selects five designs submitted to Tamayouz Design Challenge that offer ideal spaces surrounded by nature.

Tamayouz Excellence Award, an international awards programme, recently organised a design challenge that prompted architects and designers to create their ideal lockdown spaces. Following two guidelines that required the spaces to measure at 25 square metres and to meet the general restrictions of social distancing and living in lockdown, the designs submitted offered an array of concepts and architectural thinking, and many reimagined the future in unexpected ways.

The challenge recognised five winners, selected through a week-long public vote, as well as five winners selected by Coventry University’s School of Art and Design. Here, Round City selects another five projects (listed in no particular order) that attempt to blur the lines between indoors and outdoors, offering tranquil spaces surrounded by nature.

ARC-CABIN by Parham Ostovar & Elnaz Faramarzi

ARC-CABIN is a conceptual design that allows the main structure – the cabin – to be placed amidst any terrain, from a forest to a desert. Raised high above the ground, the cabin contains an external terrace designed to provide the users with extensive views of the surrounding landscapes, while also maintaining their distance from others. According to the designers, the surfaces are multifunctional: “A sitting surface becomes a sleeping surface becomes an eating surface,” they wrote in their project description. The design also features rain water collection facilities and recyclable material to ensure the sustainability of the project.

Back to Nature by Aymen Ahmed Musa Saeed

For Aymen Ahmed Musa Saeed, the biggest drawback of quarantine is the disconnection and separation from nature, and society’s growing reliance on smartphones. In his design, he offers a lockdown space informed by its natural surroundings. “The sky is our roof, the lake is our floor and the trees are our walls,” he wrote. “The outdoor space is created to reconnect and blend us with nature again”. The design is also an internet-free zone, so that users are encouraged to socialise and interact with those they’re in lockdown with.

Oasis by Rahaf Wardeh & Hadeel Wardeh

For Rahaf Wardeh and Hadeel Wardeh, their ideal lockdown space sits in Jordan’s Wadi Shueib (or Valley of Jethro). The design centres around a small pool, and features a bedroom and eating area. Framing the project, is a tall leafy wall and three steps that lead to the surrounding context. “We focused on a natural, healthy space,” they wrote. “And the fresh air, because people need to spend some time healing in nature.”

Roof Top Quarantine by Shahad Mohamed Mahdi

This design features a leisure and resting space located on the roof of a home and surrounded by different plants. The idea, wrote Shahad Mohamed Mahdi, is to turn a house’s rooftop into a resort, where users can be entertained while breathing in the open air and enjoying the outdoors. The concept is particularly meant for homes that don’t have balconies or gardens, and, according to Mahdi, it addresses the pattern of Iraqi homes “not taking advantage of their rooftops”. Additionally, the rooftop uses smart technology so that when it rains, the openings on the ceiling can close and store rain water in allocated tanks.

Return to Nature by Omar Mohammed

In Return to Nature, designer Omar Mohammed created a space that projects serenity, inner peace and a positive atmosphere. “The solution,” he wrote, “lies in this design that returns people to amazing nature.” The design features a garden consisting of polished wood that is penetrated by the leaves of nearby trees and plants. The design also injects seating and tables into the walls and floors so that extra furniture is not needed, and the space remains open and uncluttered.