Elphick Proome Architecture- Oceans Umhlanga

Location: Umhlanga

Stage: Built

Oceans Radisson Hotel

The hotel is an iconic tower representing a gateway to Umhlanga and is located and aligned specifically to protect and enhance the view of the ocean upon entry to Umhlanga. The hotel is a 5-star Radisson Blue Hotel. The building comprises of 206 keys inclusive of suites, together with the normal F.O.H. and BOH areas. The facilities include a pool deck at level 04 and an expansive Business Centre and Function area at level 06 which features a subdivisible Banquet Hall with a seating capacity of 400 pax
Above the hotel, there are 90 sectional title apartments and a spectacular penthouse at level 27. These are accessed through separate lobbies and vertical circulation. The hotel is fully integrated into the balance of the development and is conceived as the “exclamation mark” or termination at the southern end of the building. The hotel is accessed via a landscaped court to the south which features the porte-cochere. The building connects to the plinth and its parking levels to provide dedicated hotel parking.

The hotel connects to the Retail Mall at level O and level 2 that is formally articulated through the creation of a “piazza” on its northern edge. This feature space is entirely lined with restaurants and entertainment facilities. This space that was given back to the urban, public environment is set to become the new heart of Umhlanga and become a vibrant venue for dining, entertainment, and music concerts.

The building is conceived as a powerful statement that is consistent with the theming of the exotic Oceans project. A simple form with flowing curvilinear lines and a limited palette of materials assembled as a smooth exterior. This makes for a strong, unashamedly modern architectural statement.
A fairly neutral, minimalistic aesthetic that is respectful of the context and is appropriately contemporary.
The use of glass for the cladding ensures a light quality, low maintenance exterior envelope whilst the reflective facetted facade subtly reflects surrounding buildings at lower levels and the sky and its clouds at upper levels.

The reflection of the varying lights through the day following the passage of the sun becomes a dynamic part of the aesthetic of the building. The taut uninterrupted glazed shell of the hotel varies in the upper levels of the building will be inclusion of balconies for the apartments. These are treated as negatively modulated elements and form simple slots in the envelope reminiscent of the gills of a Manta Ray.

Oceans Mall

The Retail component acknowledges the street and creates highly interactive edges which connects the space to the context. The scheme rejects the typical solid, rectangular, retail box traditionally built over the past 25 years. The Development connects with Lagoon Drive through the use of restaurants and the terraces for outdoor seating.The Oceans Piazza is used to formally articulate the hotel and generates a new public space in the village, generating an outdoor focus for the node. The inclusion of the Platinum Walk occupied by the International Fashion brands has been used as a differentiating factor for the tenanting of the Centre and is marked by a subtle change in interior theming and quality. The building sits comfortably in its setting and is recognised as an iconic landmark in Umhlanga.

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