Współczesne centra turystyczne w naturalnym krajobrazie Namibii na przykładzie realizacji Nina Maritz Architects
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There are fewer and fewer places in the world where natural landscape is preserved and at the same time contemporary architecture does not harm it. Namibia is one of the countries that has managed to combine these two issues. It is endowed with natural tourism attractions and a beautiful landscape – the Namib Desert – the oldest and driest desert in the world, the Fish River Canyon – the longest gorge in Africa, Twyfelfontein – one of the largest concentrations of rock engravings in Africa included on the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lately these sites have become a tourist destination due to its uniqueness and to the fact that Namibia is a very safe country compared to other African ones. This resulted in a dynamic development of tourism as an important source of income of Namibians. Visitors’ center are one of the tourist facilities built close to the sites forming a part of the national Namibian heritage that can significantly either positively or negatively affect the natural landscape. The positive purpose of visitors’ centers is to facilitate public appreciation of the value of the specific cultural or natural heritage features, by providing education and raising public awareness about the heritage and the value of natural landscape that is to be preserved in this place and protected in the spirit of contemporary architecture. The aim of the article is to present contemporary visitors’ centers in Twyfelfontein, the Fish River Canyon and Uiba-Oas obok Spitzkoppe realized by Nina Maritz Architects, which fit-well into the natural landscape of Namibia and to determine how the architect has succeeded in achieving it, what ideas and solutions in terms of scale, form, color, materials, details, environmentally friendly design and cultural issues she applied in order to maintain the harmony with the surrounding. These studies will show how African tradition and modernity mingles in visitors’ centers based in the Namibian landscape.
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