Monad Terrace: Architecture reconciling with nature

Today is the perfect time to join a worldwide movement that oversees the rise of consciousness above blind functionality, especially when it comes to architecture and design. So what is conscious design? All it takes is a glance at Monad Terrace to understand this concept. The evidence shows architecture that merges with the natural components of a landscape while taking full advantage of modern technology and the growing cityscape. This type of building also includes clear lined interiors where the outside world and residents’ personal tastes coexist to form a contemporary safe haven.

JDS Development brings to Biscayne Bay 59 waterfront residences which appeal to the growing demand for environment-centered projects oriented towards a more sustainable lifestyle with the smart use of energy and sunlight. The creators of this work, Jean Nouvel and Kobi Karp, incorporate the organic treasures of Miami’s tropical scenery with the urban extravagance of the city. The syncretism between the water element introduced by the lagoon and the vibrant landscape that flow through West Avenue and Biscayne Bay sets the backbone for the concept of Monad Terrace. Inspired by this alluring harmony among elements, the project has earned the title of the ‘reflection machine’.

A look from outside shows a shimmering building which welcomes fixed amounts of sunlight that bounce from the water’s surface, through the hanging vines and into the condos’ interiors. At the same time the high-tech honeycomb screens shading each residence help reduce the glaring heat of Miami’s sun. Further adding to this image of a reflection machine, designers have also drawn on the beauty of an aquatic garden formed by an artificial lagoon, a central pool surrounded by smaller ones, and unique vegetation formed by vertical gardens of colorful Bougainvillea and Passion Vines.

Ateliers Jean Nouvel

The world of Monad Terrace is just as captivating inside as it is from afar; perhaps even more so considering the endeavors made by two of the most prestigious Miami and Paris-based designers: Karp and Nouvel. The first has been recognized as an award winning member of the American Institute of Architects and the American Society of Interior Design. As the founding principal of an equally prestigious company that also forms part of both groups, his work has earned local prizes such as the Miami Preservation League Merit Awards and also national merit through the AIA Outstanding service and Merit awards. Parallel to this figure is the equally exceptional Jean Nouvel, a Pritzker Prize winning architect with more than thirty ongoing projects worldwide. As Monad Terrace demonstrates, his work is recognizable for its rootedness in nature which can also be appreciated in contemporary projects such as the white with brimming plants mixed-use tower in Nicosia, Cyprus and the Philharmonie de Paris.

The two directors of this residential artwork opted for clear, neat and minimal spaces formed by white and grey walls with delicate silver finishes that shimmer under the gentle touch of inset lighting. Residences, including penthouses, can range between two to five bedrooms which count with private pools and terraces with floor to ceiling glazing. Such interiors encapsulate the tranquil and majestic character of rainforests through a minimalist approach and the artistic play with light to generate the effect of sun rays slipping through the cracks of tree leaves.

The Jean Nouvel condos are also endowed with white cabinetry and countertops that create a pleasant contrast with the wooden floors that extend all the way to the private terraces with unobstructed views of Biscayne Bay to the west, the ocean to the east, and the lush green views surrounding the lagoon to the north and south. These polished metal terraces provide an extensive outdoor space that serves as a real life theatre reflecting the beauty of Miami’s uniqueness and the city’s luxurious components.

Monad Terrace Residences

Tied to these upscale features one can also enjoy the numerous amenities that take advantage of the tropical climate and also provide diverse opportunities for relaxation. The options include an in-house concierge, a sundeck, pools and hot tub as well as a cafe and juice bar, a wellness center, a storage room and valet parking. Nonetheless, seeing as not all is about luxury and good looks, Monad Terrace has also strived to become an example of ethical and safe architecture. No minor details were overlooked seeing as the project’s development abided to the newest building codes to withstand any potential flooding while being structured above the floodplain at 3.5 meters, thus ensuring the safety of all spaces, including the garage entrance and a reinforced parking lot.

The overall arrangement generates a sense of harmony that is typically found in compelling renaissance villas with open terraces overlooking abundant gardens. Karp and Nouvel are the present day Bramante and Michelozzo who have transformed the urban landscape into a space of negotiation between the forces of nature and mankind’s creative gift. This is proof that humanity needs to set its gaze towards a greener and more sustainable future by following the footsteps of innovative projects such as Monad Terrace.

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