After the mining license of an area in the Taşocakları region of Nevşehir was revoked, the site of the former quarry was slated for conservation-oriented tourism. During the investigation of the site, archaeological sites were found in areas that had not yet been mined, including a rare altar on the top of one plateau. These areas have since been put under the protection.
The unique physical characteristics of the property, the historical sites within it, and the thermal springs discovered there were the main factors that shaped the project. The intent was to make geography a part of the designed “place” by using these physical and cultural data to create the singular context of the project.
The project was designed as three separate zones as permitted by geological constraints with respect to carving caves in the soft stone.
The hotel entrance is carved from west-facing cliffs of the former quarry and is comprised of the lobby, a rug weaving museum, and the special museum collection of the client, the Indigo Group. In accordance with the depths and heights allowed by carving caves from the rock, the plan consists of a main axis and ancillary apses attached to it.
An axis stretches from the entrance area to the east with a line of cave rooms attached to it. The circulation and accommodations in this zone feature the natural texture of the local stone and unique character of the region’s carved architecture. The corridors open up in certain locations to skylights.
When this axis emerges from the hill at its eastern end, it opens onto to another area scarred by the former quarry. A thermal spring and natural dams at this location were the basis of the lagoon that was integrated into the project.
The third zone consists of units built above the lagoon on an east-facing slope opening to a view of the city of Nevsehir. These units include hybrid, half-carved units and freestanding units made of natural stone.
The distinctive designs of the units in these different zones, which have different scales and spatial features, is a response on intended to be in proportion to the exiting context, preserving its unique nature.