Y Chalet by PARALX
Y Chalet by PARALX

MEA Awards 2018 shortlist: Residential Project of the Year

We are pleased to announce the shortlist for the MEA Awards 2018, which will take place on Wednesday, November 21 in Dubai. This year, we have received 361 submissions across the 13 categories from 132 companies throughout the region.

The shortlist was created by the Middle East Architect editorial team and will be passed on to this year's judges for review and winners selection.

Here are the shortlisted nominees for Residential Project of the Year.

Y Chalet by PARALX

This private residence in Faraya, Lebanon does not subscribe to the traditional “swiss chalet” typology of most of the homes in the area, according to its architects at PARALX. Instead, it draws from the local topography to enhance views of the adjacent mountains, mimicking the natural plateau upon which the house sits. The 6,757ft2 Y Chalet is located between the ski villages of Mzaar and Faqra. Inspired by the surrounding rugged environment and the nearby natural Faqra bridge, the home's monolithic form is clad with roughly textured agglomerate tiles that are manufactured locally. The white stone wrapping the polyhedron gives the house the appearance of blending into the snow in winter, and standing out in the summer. The building envelope is punctuated by a series of strategically placed windows and expansive glass that effectively projects views into the house and brings the outdoors in. The basement level houses a car park, utilities and ample storage space for skis and mountain bikes, while the two floors above grade host living and recreation space.

Villa Safadasht by Kamran Heirati Architects

This project, located in Karaj, Iran, seeks to develop one of the essential structures of Persian architecture: the garden. According to the architects, in a Persian garden, architecture seeks to unite the building and the site as a unique entity. Intending to frame its site, the project's axes intersect at the centre, or 'heart', of the building, where a swimming pool spans the passageway and links to the two monolithic blocks. Split in two parts, an entertainment area and a private residence, the building is cladded in unpolished grey Esparakhon, a local domoite stone found in Iranian Azerbaijan. 

J3 Villa by Loci Architecture & Design

Constructed of travertine, limestone and wood, this Dubai villa celebrates the beauty of its material palette. The monumental form appears to have been chiselled out of a solid mass. The rectilinear composition of cuboid volumes is modelled around an impressive central double height space that connects all of the internal spaces together. Subtle landscaping and a calming pool surrounds the voluminous and geometric design of the villa allowing it to sink softly into its context.

Ham Saye Apartment by Razan Architects

The Ham Saye Aprtment, located in Tehran, Iran, was designed to create an urban community, or micro neighbourhood, at a low cost for people of different cultures. With construction costs at 170€ per m2, the architects applied cost-effective details and vernacular materials, as well as local labour to materialise the project. The architects put great consideration into the public spaces of the building, with social interactions encouraged through design, as reflected in the courtyard and the unlevelled placement of the units, which allow the residents to live completely separated from one another but able to engage from different points in the building. The layout of the interior spaces also provides different views for each tenant. According to the architects, while the building features variations in facade, plan and volume, it appears to be completely integrated. 

Terrasse House by Hala Younes 

Terrasse House by Hala Younes is situated in Lebanon's mountainous setting of Qalaat al Hsar, on a site which was previously an abandoned quarry that left a sunken space surrounded by large rocks. The house is embedded in the natural ground at the edge of the flat basin that sets the stage for the beauty of the landscape. The house consists of two main levels: the upper one, which includes the family spaces and a protected terrace, and the lower one, which engages with the exterior and includes the receptions and service areas. The slight rotation between the two levels gives the lower one a favourable north view of the valley and the upper one exposure to the eastern sun. The two levels are connected by a double height lobby that houses the staircase and chimney, linking a south-oriented skylight with the natural rocks of the cave below. The skylight ensures solar heating in winter, and contributes with the cave to natural ventilation in summer. The house is reduced to two raw concrete slabs anchored in the rocks and a wood-framed glass skin thus inscribing it in the site like a seasonal shelter.

V Villa by Reza Asadzadeh and Shabnam Khalilpour

Located in the country area of Maku, a mountainous region in an Azeri province of Iran, V Villa was built to provide a reclusive retreat from city life. The architects designed the project to create a seamless connection between indoor and outdoor spaces, while creating the home's simple volumes to be independent from each other. The ground floor houses the living room and kitchen, while the first floor includes two bedrooms and a bathroom.

Mahallat Residence by CAAT Studio

This project is located on the residential periphery of Mahallat, Iran, an area that is rich with travertine and houses two significant mines, Hajiabad and Abbasabad. The project was delegated to the architects after the structure and floor plates were already built and the client required a cost-effective design. All of the building's programmes were laid out to create spatial divisions and encourage a variety of motions and experiences as the end-users move throughout. The project's most notable element is its dynamic facade, which appears to be twisting and warping. Featuring the local stone as an environmentally-conscious decision and to help the team stay within budget, the structure stands as an example of sculptural architecture.