Chichen Itza Lodge-Museum / Fletcher Priest Architects / london + köln + riga | fletcherpriest
Chichen Itza Lodge-Museum  Arquitectum

Set in one of the most enigmatic and beautiful places in the world our competition entry, demanded a respectful and poetic intervention while establishing an architectural presence with a responsible ecological vision.

The project has a monumental lightness. It does not compete with the Citadel, but celebrates it with an authentic contemporary architecture. The location of the museum lodge is determined by the morphological characteristics of the site, coupled with a grid whose focal and gravitational point is the pyramid. Conceptually the project literally inverts the monument, creating voids where presently there are building blocks. This geometry is then further underlined by the floor slabs which generate a series of idiosyncratic spaces from which to view the landscape.

The programmed spaces are clearly organised. Public and communal areas are arranged on the ground level, with rooms and terraces above. At the very top is the cafeteria, which profits from direct sunlight and enjoys the best views of the Citadel. Circulation is through open staircases that make reference to the monumental typology of the Mayan civilisation. The Museum, in turn is connected through the entry hallway and protected from direct sunlight through the form of the building.

The building is designed to be self-sufficient, with a minimal ecological impact. Photo-voltaic panels clad the roof, and rainwater collection becomes a sculptural element visible from all levels as a. At night, the suspended illuminated boxes are reminiscent of fireflies in the forest canopy.