SIGG, the hardest working Swiss reusable aluminum water bottle makers, are back with fourteen more reasons for you to ditch disposable plastic for good. This month, Elle magazine teams up with global warming activist Laurie David in an effort to curtail global warming. Fourteen major designers were commissioned to create one-of-a-kind SIGG water bottles for our sipping pleasure. The bottles will be auctioned off on April 14.
Those of you who salivate at LOT-EK’s amazing shipping container structures may be wondering whatever happened to the proposed Lafayette Street Tower near New York City’s Chinatown. The building, which received much press last year, was commissioned by Mr. Woo of Young Woo & Associates, who (like me) was intrigued by the design firm’s use of recycled containers in both residential and commercial buildings.
Partially inspired by the industrial feel of the neighborhood, the 19-story tower was slated to be erected at 87 Lafayette Street, adjacent to the city’s former Engine 31 firehouse Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
As an avid thrift store shopper and furniture restorer, I’m always happy to stumble across old or refashioned things. It sure beats filling the house with items from your local furniture store that always seem to look the same.
Phoenix based Modus Development, known for making great use of urban infill areas, has built The Galleries at Turney, eight detached residences at about 2,000 square feet each. These modern condos are LEED certified Gold by the United States Green Building Council, which rates projects for water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, indoor environmental quality, and even proximity to mass transit. Depending on how far the project wants to go and typically how much money a project is able to spend, totaled points can earn either silver, gold or platinum.
That’s right, kind of like levels of credit cards or medals in gymnastics — but this is about saving money on energy and saving the environment.
According to UAE Interact, United Arab Emirates’ president Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum are continuing to lead an effort originally set forth by Sheikh Zayed to build better lives for their country’s people. The focus this time around is on breaking new ground in the optimization of alternative energy resources.
The UAE Pavilion at Shanghai’s Expo 2010 will showcase these efforts with the design help of UK architectural company, Foster + Partners. The Shanghai Expo is said to be the first world expo on the theme of city, “Better City, Better Life.”
The Starwood Hotels and Resort Group – the company behind the W hotels, the Westin, Sheraton and so on – are set to launch Element, their extended stay hotel later this year. Banking on the fact that traveling and being away from home for extended periods is exhausting and unsettling (not to mention wasteful), Element hopes to gives guests a sense of calm and routine while on the road. By utilizing upscale, modern and natural surroundings, Element will hopefully keep you in yours.
Finally a truly forward thinking design here in America that incorporates both old and new, molding seamlessly into the landscape. The Living Museum, due to open this fall in Golden Gate Park, should push forward all sorts of public building design, and it should be the largest public building to earn a LEED platinum rating (which only 70 buildings worldwide have received so far).
The building is made up of three “domes” built into the ground and topped with 2.5 acres of native plants growing on a sod-style roof, an ancient technology that is making a modest comeback in green circles. From above, it looks like a series of small hills, except for several skylights that dot each hill and provide natural lighting below.
I’m not the type to get excited about outdoor furniture. To be honest, so long as a bird hasn’t visited it in advance, I’m not bothered by the style of bench I’m sitting on. But obviously I haven’t been invited to the right garden parties, because I didn’t know benches of the calibre of Diamond Teak even existed.
Part art installation, part optical illusion, Diamond Teak’s Spirit Song collection must be seen to be believed. The elegant curves are handcrafted by the design duo of Tiffany and Tiffany, using golden teak and stainless steel to create an elegant timelessness. Functional and durable with a lashing of aesthetic appeal, the collection of benches, chairs, tables and ottomans would look at home in “(posh) gardens, fine homes, snowy mountaintop retreats and tropical island resorts.”
Is it just me or is the thought of living above a flooded metropolis in a series of pre-fabricated helium balloons just a little — dare I say — out there? I mean, it beats a toxic FEMA trailer, but I’m not convinced. But at the risk of getting all killjoy on you, I’ll let you decide for yourself if this proposal for a water-logged NYC is rooted in logic or merely a flight of fancy Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
Why do people scoff whenever a model tries to branch out and do something creative? (This is not a riddle; I’m really asking.) Is it because society assumes that beautiful people are stupid? As a person who possesses many talents, I reject this notion wholeheartedly. Besides, when it comes to creativity, who understands style and design better than models? Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
The most interesting thing to me about the UK’s LightHouse (aka BRE House) is its shape. Sure, it’s made from sustainable materials and boasts unrivalled efficiency in terms of its energy use, CO2 emissions and carbon footprint. And yes, it’s also the first ever net zero carbon home in the UK to receive a level 6 (the highest) Code for Sustainable Homes.
The location is San Francisco. The year is 2106. The city is powered by geothermal energy “mushrooms” and algae-harvesting towers produce hydrogen, which is stored and distributed via a series of carbon nanotube walls. Fog catchers capture moisture from the atmosphere to distill fresh water.
A network of above ground and underground systems “fulfill infrastructural needs for the movement of people, water, hover-cars, and energy throughout the city”. Taking cues from nature, a giant super system resembling seaweed and chantrelle mushroom will hold together this network to collect water, power and distribute it across the city.