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Andaz Maui, Wailea, Hawaii, USA

Issue 75 October / November 2013 : Retail : Hotel

ARCHITECT: Rockwell Group / Site Concepts LIGHTING DESIGN: Focus Lighting

Focus Lighting has once again worked with the architects of Rockwell Group to create a tranquil environment for guests at this luxurious resort hotel.

The expansive 15-acre resort at Mokapu Beach has recently taken on a new life as the Andaz Maui at Wailea. The lighting design team at Focus Lighting worked with the architects from Rockwell Group and the landscape architects from Site Concepts International to re-invent the 290-room resort to an experience that is woven into the surrounding environment of Mokapu Beach.

“We wanted to create a serene experience for guests, starting with a sense of procession beginning at the resort entry drive and leading all the way down to Mokapu Beach,” says lighting designer Stephanie Daigle. From the moment guests arrive on the resort grounds, they are surrounded by 30-foot-tall monkeypod and banyan trees lit by firelight from a procession of tiki torches. Down the drive, small adjustable LED bullet fixtures are concealed within the tree canopies to light the tropical plants below.

Leading to the hotel lobby, a long bridge flanked by reflecting pools frames the view through the lobby and out over Mokapu Beach and the Pacific Ocean. Direct/indirect steplights integrated into the bridge columns illuminate the walkway while providing a soft uplight glow between the double column faces and reflecting off the water below.

The bridge reaches the open-air hotel lobby with a 25-foot-high pitched ceiling and glass walls that retract completely to provide unimpeded views of the beach and allow the ocean breeze to flow through the space. Though the space is grand, the lighting brings the focus lower within the space to create a more intimate, residential atmosphere.

The path again scales down as visitors venture outside of the lobby and past the four-level pool deck and cascading waterfalls along stairs that are lit with louvered LED steplights and are partially illuminated by the blue glow emanating from the pools. The guests’ procession culminates at the scenic Mokapu Beach. Careful consideration went into the landscape lighting to accommodate the Maui County Dark Sky ordinances, which work to minimise light pollution and protect the night sky. Paths and steps are lit with fully shielded stake-mounted pathlights and well-louvered steplights. All landscape accent lighting between the hotel and the beach is provided by live fire tiki torches.

Throughout the resort “the unobtrusive lighting scheme enhances the clean, elegant architecture that ties into the surrounding landscape,” says lighting designer Michael Cummings. In the Awili Spa, LED accent fixtures are used to backlight panels of onyx in the millwork to provide an ambient glow in the space and accentuate the richness of the natural material.

Focus Lighting used a significant amount of LED lamps and fixtures for the project to achieve LEED certification (in progress). The challenge was to find the right combination of LED and halogen sources to provide a warm and inviting quality of light that complements the palette of rich, natural materials used within the resort. Multiple mock-ups were conducted to test different combinations of sources with the selected finishes to ensure that they emanated a quality of light in keeping with the intimate, residential feeling of the resort.


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