Guests can enjoy hiking trails that meander through the surrounding forests, mountains, and valleys with educational signage that explain the importance of the biodiversity in the region. The ecolodge integrates old ruins of buildings affected by the Lebanese civil war. Beyond the value of extending the life cycle of the building materials in the structures, the ruins are revived and connected through a web of hiking trails to retell past events in the minds of tourists. This approach provides an immersive experience for guests while maintaining the cultural identity of the area. The ecolodge in Kfar Houneh is a sustainable development that supports the local economy by creating a demand for local agro-food products and kiosks, preserves the environment, and celebrates the region’s cultural heritage.
Project status: Detailed design phase completed, expected start of construction - March 2024.
The jury appreciated the profound impact this sustainable design project holds for the economic and social well-being of people living in this rural area surrounded by mountain peaks and pine forests. Within a region of political instability, the project’s embodiment of resilience and community spirit was highly commended. The significance of this construction initiative was considered truly remarkable also because it plays a pivotal role in preserving history and place, aligning with the cultural values deeply ingrained within the people of Lebanon.
The completeness of the project is evident, raising questions about the population it intends to serve, its potential to generate employment opportunities, and the scope of its impact on the community. Of particular note is the project’s dedication to ecological restoration, which resonates with the jury. The building’s design showcases a seamless integration into the landscape, contributing to its aesthetic allure and enhancing the overall environment. A noteworthy attribute is the strategic use of alternative solar energy, significantly reducing fossil fuel dependence. Additionally, the incorporation of rainwater harvesting and wastewater treatment systems demonstrates a conscientious approach to water management. The jury also commends the project’s emphasis on sustainable construction practices, promoting a circular economy model by prioritizing reusable, recycled, and upcycled materials. The project’s architectural excellence and deep connection with its context were also highlighted, emphasizing the depth of its impact and cultural significance.