Location: St. Julian’s, MALTA
Status: Awaiting Building Permits
Model: Matter Make
Structural Engineering: iAS
Building Services and Fire Safety Consultant: Beenel
Text: Ann Dingli
Sited on a steep, narrow hill, Sayonara Hotel’s two main façades enjoy contrasting views: the south opens onto a quiet town street, the north onto a main road towards the seaside promenade. Its immediate context varies – larger, stately buildings sit at the top of the slope, with smaller apartment blocks condensing towards the bottom. The building’s volume and height are directly informed by context, with views opening up along its triangular descent.
Conceived as an extension to an existing residential building, the design approach was to create contrast between old and new, slicing through the building in section to create an adjoining alleyway. Rendered in gold, this linking space sits in shadow, offering variation as users move from old to new spaces. To the south of the alley, the retained building houses the hotel’s entrance complex, including reception, lounge, lobby and storage spaces. Entrance spaces are intimate, celebrating original proportions. By contrast, the new intervention to the back amplifies this scale, lifting its main volume onto a glazed plinth that houses bar, lounge and work spaces.
Newbuild volumes are wrapped in aluminium gold fins, appearing in sequences of void, solid, and semi- void sections to shield rooms and private apartments from overlooking, as well as control light and establish distinct views. A subterranean pool and spa area is housed within a luxurious, double-height space, illuminated by light filtering through the bright, upper levels.