How can an architectural work be best situated on a piece of land cut off by the great abyss that is the Pacific Ocean?
Land, sky and sea…the project to create Posada de Mike Rapu adapted to the local topography, creating a close relationship between the land of Rapa Nui and distant views of the Pacific Ocean. It was organized using sections and fully curved perimeters, without a front or back, straight or reverse, approachable from any angle.
The structure rests on a base of stones extracted from the site and which were gathered, transported and worked by local people. This structure, built by expert builders, forms a kind of altar on which living quarters have been built out of wood brought from the mainland.
The closed, semi-closed, covered and sheltered spaces are designed so that the traveler can enjoy the climate of Rapa Nui, with its stable, moderate year-round temperatures but changeability in terms of cloudiness, winds, rainfall and luminosity.
The lodge features a series of skylights in the form of extended ovals which are linked to one another. They light the way, changing the luminosity with the path of the sun.
From outside, the lodge seems to mimic its surroundings, as the stones and wood emulate the black of the nearby stone walls. The roofs are covered with red-brown clay slates, the same color as the surrounding hills.
In the swimming pool area, there is a small building which can be reached by a walkway. This short distance from the lodge gives the traveler the sensation of deep restfulness, of being within a forest surrounded by birdsong and the swaying of branches in the wind.
This architect, who has studied and worked in Chile and Spain, has built up a large portfolio of award-winning work, including:
The Chile Pavilion at Expo '92 in Seville, Spain (1992), Hotel Salto Chico (1995), in partnership with Germán del Sol, The campus for Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez (2004) and Posada de Mike Rapu (2007)
His work has been published in specialist books and journals and included in exhibitions at the Ibero-American Biennale of Architecture, the Sao Paulo International Architecture Biennale and the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
In Finland in September 2008 he received the "Spirit of Nature” wood architecture award, a prize granted each year by the Finnish association “Puu kulttuurissa” (wood in culture) since 1999.