Aleem Manji Architects - Kenya
Rumaisa Residency comprises 66 duplex apartments spread over approximately 1.5 acres in Nairobi’s Riverside neighbourhood. The brief of the project sought to provide a housing solution for Nairobi’s burgeoning middle income, by not only providing them with high quality, well-designed houses, but also making an attempt at analyzing their overall well-being and designing spaces and facilities that would take care of them as well. We looked critically at what was important to the target market, in addition to the apartment itself: family, recreational facilities, congregational facilities (both small and large), parking for their cars etc and looked at how these could be utilized to enhance the overall design of the scheme. We made the decision to lift majority of the amenities to the rooftop area, thereby freeing up space on the lower floors for the central atrium, which we consciously chose to leave as a green space at the heart of the scheme. The atrium served the purpose of allowing in natural light through the centre of the scheme, created areas for public concourse, private meditative areas and natural landscaping. The rooftop acted as the link between the disparate blocks of apartments, connecting them around the periphery of the atrium, allowing us to provide 3 infinity edge swimming pools at the height of the 19th floor, as well as a gym area, entertainment hall (with indoor sports facilities), relaxation alcoves and a secure kids play area. The duplexes themselves were designed to maximize on natural lighting and ventilation, with double height lounge spaces acting as interpenetrative anchors for each duplex, allowing for a light and breezy feel through the apartment, and minimizing the need for mechanical ventilation through strategic placement of windows with fixed ventilation to promote cross ventilation and release of warm air through convection. Privacy in the apartments was ensured through critical placement of the apartment blocks, paying close attention to the spacing between the blocks and the orientation of the individual units. Considerable thought and effort has been put into the design of Rumaisa Residency, and we feel the result is a development that will not only provide a comfortable family home for the end-user, but will also give them a beneficial lifestyle as well.