Lord of the Jungle

Richard Powers

House C, Batujimbar (1974): Bawa's design for this 15-villa estate was an early example of Balinese resort style

Geoffrey Bawa is well known in his native Sri Lanka and in design circles, but wider fame has eluded the architect who died in 2003 at the age of 84. Part of the reason is that the building style Bawa pioneered — melding Asian and global design traditions in a way that suited the requirements of monsoon climates — has become ubiquitous. Verandahs, water features, local craftwork, lush landscaping: today these kinds of elements are taken for granted in resorts, spas and villas all over the region, and it is easy to believe that it was ever thus. But had it...

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