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Friday, March 27, 2009

Capella Resort, Sentosa Island, Singapore

architecture NOWContemporary Foster + Partners resort to open this month

Foster + Partners' Capella Resort is to open on Sentosa Island later this month. Built on a 30 acre site overlooking the ocean, the luxury resort contains Singapore's first circular, glass-roofed ballroom, two restaurants, a spa, private meeting rooms, a business centre and a club lounge.

Guests will have the option to live in the hotel for extended stays in sea-facing private suites and luxury bungalows nestled in rolling hills. The Foster design fused the contemporary with the historic, and the built elements with the tropical forest.

Foster & Partners called in Web Structures to help deliver its vision. Their “Fusion Engineering” techniques were put to work on the design, set to be Capella Singapore's new flagship in Asia. Web Structures’ team had to use all its expertise and innovation on the project, which blended the old with the new and included constructing a new development right alongside the old colonial buildings.

Another delicate part of the plan was the creation of a three-storey basement on the site, with no retaining walls. Dr Hossein Rezai-Jorabi, Web Structures group director, said his firm had successfully risen to “many challenges” during the project. He said: “The engineering challenges were numerous and varied, from the three storey basement, built on a site immediately next to the existing conservation buildings, to the large span ballroom.

“We also had to meet the challenges of the design and construction of the many different components of the resort on the steep slopes of the hilly site.

“Foster & Partners retained the existing colonial buildings which were on the site, and integrated these into the design in a manner that celebrated the characters of these buildings. That involved very delicate work, but using our techniques the new build now sits side by side with those historic buildings."

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