사막에서 명상의 시간:
아리조나 사막 한가운데 위치한 아만기리 리조트는
사막을 아름다운 자연의 장면으로 바꾸어 놓았다.
그랜드스테어케이스-에스칼랑트 협곡의 아름다운 뷰를
마주보는 건물의 배치로 리조트와
자연은 하나가 된다.
사막은 더이상 두려움의 존재가 아닌
명상과 즐길 수 있는 자연으로 확장되어 내부 시설들과
자연으로 확장되는 거대한 풀장을 중심으로
동측으로부터 16개의 스위트와 남측으로 부터 18개 스위트,
총 34개로 구성된 스위트는 바쁜 도시의 삶에 지친
VIP 투숙객들에게 자연속에서
긴 호흡을 할 수 있도록 도와준다.
재충천을 위한 스파는 사우나가 있는 워터파빌리온과 테라피 파빌리온,
스팀룸, 플런지 풀, 피트니스 센터, 요가 파빌리온, 왓추 풀 로 구성되어
또다른 명상의 시간을 갖게 해준다.
사막이라는 특수성과 접근성 때문에
많은 사람들에게 개방된 공간은 아니지만
공간과 프로그램의 한계를 잘 극복한
Amangiri, ‘the peaceful mountain’ stood boldly among the protected valley with sweeping views over the colorful Arizona air as we approached for landing to the close by airport of Page Arizona (a 20-minute drive away). Set amidst the starkly beautiful Navajo desert land in the heart of the American Southwest, it felt as if Amangiri was molded from the earth itself, as if it were one with the dramatic landscape.
Situated against the natural rock formations of the Four Corners (the region where Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico meet), Amangiri blends harmoniously into the natural landscape of sand and rock, evoking feelings of an ancient settlement. Adrian Zecha of Amanresorts, was clear in wanting to build something that was ‘a contemporary interpretation of native Indian architecture… that would respect the natural environment’ – and he succeeded. Amangiri makes a bold, raw statement, celebrating the mesmerizing light which changes every other minute while nature takes center stage. Minimal in design, it is constructed of large concrete blocks, which feel as if they move, while their colors and texture change according to the natural light: they feel frozen and timeless, yet at the same time they are the natural extension of the sites’ unique geology.
Driving through a winding road amidst the National Park, gazing out to deep canyons and towering plateaus, we descended into a valley and arrived at the hotels central Pavilion. The Pavilion, houses all dining, reading and living facilities, while boasting breathtaking views of the Grand Park – Escalante National Monument. The main swimming pool carved around yet another rock, is attached to the Pavilion, and leading from it are two separate wings housing the suites: the Desert Wing to the East houses 16 suites reached via an external walled lane, complete with sound (natural running water) and verdant moss. To the South, the Mesa wing houses 18 suites along undulating rock formations, and the Aman Spa, an architectural marvel in its own right: water is predominant throughout, while small shafts allow wind and light to flow in mysteriously, creating spaces ideal for relaxation and reflection (the sauna gives you the best sauna views you have ever seen in your life!). Treatments are created to reflect the traditional Navajo healing traditions, and offer a totally holistic approach to rejuvenation.
The interiors of the suites from the lamps to the chairs, and the hooks to the subdued color palette and the comfy throws, have all been custom designed to capture something unique about the American southwest, in a very modern way. Hides, leather, blackened steel and a lot of wood, are perfectly juxtaposed against the ‘raw’ yet smooth concrete. Entering the suite, the majestic scenery takes center stage: my room – just like all of them – had uninterrupted views towards the dunes and the plateaus, even from the shower and the bathtub, and I just couldn’t help but leave all the curtains open, light the bonfire in my terrace, and just watch the colors change as day gave way into night and vice versa. In pure awe I couldn’t sleep for two nights in a row, but not for a minute did I feel tired.
During the days I spent at Amangiri, I hiked, climbed, walked through slot canyons, went horseback riding and ‘boated’ at Lake Powell, but nothing compared to the hotel experience itself: such is the boldness of the structure and the surreal beauty of the surrounding environment, that you can’t help but just sit there and try to take it all in. Sitting at the desert lounge, wrapped up in my cashmere blanket, I enjoyed the unrivaled Aman service, the understated elegance, and just couldn’t have enough of the ever changing magical desert light and the star-lit skies.
Name of Project: Amangiri
Architects: Rick Joy, Wendell Burnett & Marwan Al-Sayed
Interiors: Caterina Spies-Reece of CSR Design / Amanresorts
Location: Canyon Point, Utah
address: 1 Kayenta Road, Canyon Point, Utah, USA
Total plot area: 600+ acres Total building area: 62,000 Sq.feet
Number of Suites: 34
Project year: 2009
Rooms from $950
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