Swahili Gem
Mombasa, Kenya
Fourteen apartments are contained in the six-storey concrete building, and three patio houses are configured within the slope of the terrain. To ensure privacy and reduce solar penetration while permitting passive cross-ventilation and natural light, three sides of the exterior of the multi-storey structure are clad in a mashrabiyya-inspired structural lattice of reinforced concrete that is finished with white plaster or coral-stone cladding that is typical to the area; the north-facing fourth side is kept open for views to the sea.  Construction of the structural mashrabiyya was an opportunity to train unskilled workers, and the project also seeks to revalorise this lower-income area of Mombasa.

Source: Aga Khan Trust for Culture
Mombasa, Kenya
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Associated Names
Completed 2017
3,840 m²
Variant Names
Swahili Gem
Building Usages
housing development