geoffrey bawa

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Geoffrey manning bawa

(23 July, 1919 27 May, 2003) was a Sri Lankan architect He was educated at Royal College after which he studied English and Law, 1938, at CAMBRIDGE gaining a BA and went on to read law at Middle Temple, London becoming a Barrister in 1944 Returning to Ceylon, after WORLD WAR II, he started working for a Colombo Law firm. In 1951 he was apprentice to H.H. REID, of the Colombo architectural practice EDWARDS, REID AND BEGG, whom he was the sole surviving partner

Geoffrey Bawa is Sri Lanka's most prolific and influential architect Highly personal in his approach, evoking the pleasures of the senses that go hand in hand with the climate, landscape, and culture of ancient Ceylon In 1951 he was apprenticed to the sole surviving partner of the Colombo architectural practice Edwards, Reid and Begg. Bawa qualified as an architect in 1957 at the age of thirty-eight


Bawa's early work included office buildings, factories and schools and was influenced by the 'Tropical Modernism of Fry and Drew and ultimately by the work of le Corbusier Tropical Modernism favoured white abstract forms and horizontal rooflines Bawa was soon forced to admit that overhanging pitched roofs offered the best protection against tropical sun and rain.

Architectural style

the first to fuse elements of traditional Sinhalese domestic architecture with modern concepts of open planning, demonstrating that an outdoor life is viable on a tight urban plot fully conversant with contemporary technology and international developments with a deep understanding - and feeling for -vernacular traditions. His sensitivity to environment is reflected in his careful attention to the sequencing of space, the creation of vistas, courtyards, and walkways, the use of materials and treatment of details

originally intended to build the hotel adjacent to Sigiriya, Bawa insisted that the hotel instead be sited eleven kilometers southeast of the historic city and rock formation.The additional distance both protects the immediate surroundings of the cultural site and allows for picturesque views of the monument

Its effect on the visitor as a nuanced "third space" between landscape and architecture

WORKSkandalama hotel , sri lanka

the most beautiful features of the hotel's design is the large, cave-like porte cochre abutting the western side of the cliff around which the hotel wrapsGuests enter the hotel under this huge slanted canopy that angles down towards the entrance to a compressed, enclosed walkway suddenly discovering the liberating expansiveness of the open-air lobby and its panoramic view northward over the Kandalama Tank Bawa thoughtfully choreographed this process of arrival in order to prolong and dramatize the threshold between the treeshielded entrance drive and the spectacular views that the hotel lobby skillfully frames.

A small Rubber plantation Consisting of a house and 25 acres of landA low hill planted with rubber and fruit trees and coconut palms with rice fields Surrounded by the dedduwa lake The italian inspired garden with spectacular views over lakes and tropical jungle together with a simply design planted house


When baba come back to Ceylon in 1949. He became almost totally involved in the pleasures of altering his house and transforming the rubber plantation into a wonderfully beautiful, rolling landscape ; staircase and terraced, squared into paddy fields, on the edge of a long lake with a wild island in its centre. This he so enjoyed that he decided to become an ARCHITECT.

Geoffrey bawa created this tropical garden ideal. The Italian inspired gardens , with spectacular views over the lake and tropical jungle, has been transformed into a series of outdoor rooms creating a huge feeling of space with vistas that have been carefully chosen to emphasize their beauty with points of architecture and arts; from entrances, pavilion, broad walks to a multitude of courtyards and pools.


This is a work of arts, not of nature; it is the contrivance of a single mind and a hundred pairs of hands working together with nature to produce something that is SUPERNATURAL



kandalama hotel




kandalama hotel



President, Sri Lanka Institute of Architects (1969) Heritage Award of Recognition, for Outstanding Architectural Design in the Tradition of Local Vernacular Architecture, for the new Parliamentary Complex at Sri Jayawardenepura, Kotte from the Pacific Area Travel Association. (1983) Conferred title of Vidya Jothi (Light of Science) in the Inaugural Honours List of the President of Sri Lanka (1985) The Chairman's Award of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture in recognition of a lifetime's achievement in and contribution to the field of architecture (2001) The Architect of the Year Award, India (1996)



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