In ProjectsJuly 10, 20233 Minutes

Azulik Uh May: An Architectural Ode to Sustainability and Nature in Tulum

In the heart of the Mexican jungle, Azulik Uh May stands as a remarkable embodiment of sustainable architecture and the profound bond between humans and nature. This extraordinary cultural complex, conceived by Eduardo Neira, also known as “Roth”, the founder of Roth Architecture, symbolizes a harmonious blend of sustainability, artistic expression, and communal spirit.

Situated in Tulum, Mexico, Azulik Uh May is a resort that effortlessly merges with its natural environment. The architectural design is inspired by the principles of biomimicry, a discipline that seeks to solve human challenges by emulating nature’s ingenious solutions. The resort is designed to coexist with nature, not to dominate or damage it, thereby aligning with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals for Sustainable Cities and Communities.

The design of the resort harmonizes modern and ancestral elements through organic and spiral forms. The spaces respect the inherent characteristics of the location, echoing the wisdom of nature. The complex is characterized by fluid shapes: spiraling walkways lined with bejuco vines and secluded nooks that invite visitors to explore barefoot. The design breaks away from traditional architectural norms, with no right angles to be found.

sfer-ik-uh-mau-6

The central gallery, IK LAB, is a manifestation of Roth’s vision to create a reflective space where art and nature intersect. Living trees sprout from openings in the polished concrete floor and extend through tunnels suspended from the ceiling. When it rains, the openings in the roof channel water directly to their roots, fostering a unique interplay between the built environment and nature.

Azulik Uh May transcends the conventional definition of a resort; it’s a cultural hub that houses an innovative art space, a design and fashion lab, a cutting-edge recording studio, and artist residencies. At the core of the center, a school dedicated to the universal language of art and craft unites the local Mayan community, resident artists, international students, and scholars.

The resort’s dedication to sustainability is not limited to its architecture. During construction, the original topography of the ecosystem was preserved, with the architectural structures virtually hovering over the ground on a system of piles and platforms. This approach minimizes disruption to the ground ecosystem, further underscoring the resort’s commitment to environmental preservation.

Azulik Uh May is a testament to the transformative power of sustainable architecture and the deep connection between humans and nature. It’s a place where art, nature, and human creativity intersect, offering a unique, immersive experience that pushes the boundaries of traditional resort design. This architectural wonder is not just a place to stay; it’s a place to connect, to discover, and to be inspired.

> Roth Architecture
> Azulik
> Sferik
Images via Roth Architecture