Eco Chic | Dar Hi Eco Retreat, Nefta, Tunisia
New resorts that are coming on stream around the world are increasingly demonstrating clear responsibility toward their immediate communities and environments by going green. Practicing ecotourism of various degrees, embodied in beautifully-designed edifices that celebrate the earth with locally sourced building materials, furnished with local arts & crafts that instantly give them a distinctive and unmistakable brand identity. Such is the statement that the new Dar Hi Eco Lodge in Nefta, on the fringe of the Sahara Desert in Tunisia.
French designer Matali Crasset’s first venture into architecture blends social and private spaces and keeps cool in the intense sun. Located on a hill on the edge of the Sahara Desert in Tunisia, the Dar Hi borrows from local traditions and materials to create an environmentally sensitive retreat.
Dar Hi is made almost entirely from locally sourced materials and labor. Such a refreshing reflection on the potential for localization in building design. The clay bricks and exterior finishings made with local materials but the structural elements were developed using local building techniques.
The interior woodwork, fabric, and decorations are made with local palm fiber and wood. In fact, a group called Palmlab researches uses for palm in a faculty located within the Hotel.
The floor plan of the eco resort consists of outdoor shaded community areas, a central spa and bath, and rooms which all take advantage of the immense views while creating privacy and shaded outdoor spaces below.