- Sustainable Architecture
- Eco-Resort by Bourgeois Lechasseur Architects
Many of us would love to be able to take a break from routine, leave the frenetic pace of the life behind and get back to nature. At the same time, we’re not always ready to do without our comforts, so combining an appealing holiday in the middle of an enchanting forest with the advantages of a resort that has a limited environmental impact sounds like a dream come true.
And in the forested mountainside of Petite-Rivière-Saint-François, this is exactly what you’ll get. Here, in the forest, Bourgeois Lechasseur Architects has designed the first three units of an eco-resort based on geodesic architecture and called Dômes Charlevoix. The client wanted to keep the environmental impact of the new manmade structure in this breath-taking landscape as low as possible, which made these geodesic domes a natural choice. The original township of what is now Petite-Rivière-Saint-François was established in 1675 as one of the first settlements in this region of Canada along the Saint Lawrence River. Located at the foot of a popular ski resort - Le Massif de Charlevoix - the whole municipality is a narrow strip of land that runs along the river for 6 kilometres. The area is really popular with outdoor enthusiasts and includes trails for hiking and mountain bike riding as well as slopes for skiing in winter. The nearby town of Baie-Saint-Paul offers more mundane leisure activities with a range of restaurants, cafes, shops and boutiques.
Each of the domes in the complex cantilevers out over the hill to leave the smallest footprint possible. The geodesic domes sit on raised wooden decks that blend in with the colours of the surrounding environment. The framework of these domes is prefabricated and assembled on-site, above ground and under the tree canopy. The domes are made from a lattice of triangles that creates a strong framework using as little material as possible to keep them light and sustainable. The cabins designed by Bourgeois Lechasseur Architects are completely insulated by PVC material and visitors can even stay here in the harsh winters because the stoves that burn wood - a local, renewable 0-kilometre resource - and energy-efficient radiant heating in the concrete floors keep the occupants warm.
The Dômes Charlevoix cabins come with a bedroom, bathroom and kitchen area on the ground level and another double bedroom area on the mezzanine level, easily accommodating four people. Occupants can enjoy the stunning views through the trees and across to the river by drawing back the tent-like canvas covering inside and peeking through the triangles or they can make the most of the outdoors and the connection with nature with outdoor dining or a spa on the wooden deck. What more would you want for a regenerative holiday?
Project: Bourgeois Lechasseur Architects - http://bourgeoislechasseur.com/
Location: Petite-Rivière-Saint-François, Quebec, Canada
Images: Maxime Valsan