Monthly Archives: June 2011

Showcase: Alila Diwa Goa

AWA is pleased to showcase its work on Alila Diwa Goa, a sought-after destination for serenity and relaxation among a richly verdant atmosphere.  Tradition Goan design provides the foundation for its contemporary elegance.  Amenities such as culinary exquisite dining areas, spas, and a lap pool, craft this enclave of exclusivity for the most discerning guests.  This 200-room resort has four bars/restaurants, a conference facility, a health spa and two swimming pools.

AWA was chosen because we can engage in designing a “hand-crafted” project where the lighting design is a bespoken solution for the project in question, and not recycled design ideas from other projects.  We were also chosen because of our experience set in different parts of the world- US, Middle-East, South Asia and the Far-East. We had completed a few high-end hospitality projects internationally, and we could develop and relate our designs to the local settings.

Positioned to capture the essence of the Alila Diwa experience, AWA sought to create a fully immersive experience in which illumination, from the full plan to the material of the light fixtures, would capture each guest’s curiosity with a display beauty, and emphasize the serenity, luxury and romance ever-present in the resort.  In tandem with this design intent, the project was to attain green globe status through balanced utilization and preservation of local resources, and through reduction of light pollution.

She Was A Poet and Didn’t Even Know It

Some firms host Thirsty Thursdays. Not AWA. Beginning in May we launched our own late week tradition. Poetry Thursdays. Poetry has the power to transform ones thinking, and challenge ones perspective. And, those are just some of the attributes we need as designers. From our resource library to our new tradition, we are looking for ways to explore our world. Don’t be surprised if some of our Poetry Thursday trickles into the blog here.  Or, our brown bag lunches. Or even our killer AWA ping-pong tournaments. We’re just willing to share like that…

Keeping it Diversified

According to the AIA, April 2011 was a tough month for billings, and here in the US funding for construction projects remains an obstacle. The AIA expects that funding pressure to continue. This means that US-centric firms will continue to face pressures as they look to outperform. From our perspective, a diversified portfolio is critical to success. Our partnerships with international architecture firms have proved invaluable over the past two years, as we’ve been tapped to work on projects in key areas of development, such as Singapore, Dubai and India. We also see potential in Brazil and South America. This doesn’t mean we’re turning our back on US business. Far from it. Our work in our hometown of New York continues apace. But, our geographic spread does give our firm the flexibility to explore design across the globe, a reality that we are grateful for.

The LED Train

LEDs recently stole the show at the annual Lightfair conference in Philadelphia. Linda Lentz, writing for Architectural Record, said, “the quality and range of white LEDs is equaling that of many other light sources, and there are LED solutions for just about every application.” While this has been a breakout year for LEDs, at AWA we’ve been incorporating the technology into our designs for years before they came into fashion. Part of our commitment to the space is to implement technologically sophisticated design. And, this means we were on the LED train before it hit the mainstream. From INFOS in 2002 to 3 W. 13th Street in 2005 to Peak Tower in 2006 to Alila Diwa in 2010, LEDs have been creatively sourced and specified where appropriate. Beginning with color-changing applications and moving toward white light sources, we have been researching LEDs since we started in 2002 when we bought two sample sets of LEDs from a manufacturer. Because of our technical bent we have been soldering, wiring and playing with optics and distribution for years. Prediction? White light LED will continue to be specified where appropriate for the project and the client, but it is not a panacea for all architectural lighting challenges.