minazi beach bar

a fancy but simple beach bar

Design and construction of an attractive beach bar as a part of the newly renovated beach front of the ‘Sunset Bungalows’ holiday resort on Kendwa Beach, north of Zanzibar, Ugunja Island. 

A beach ‘furniture’ that will respect the natural beauty of a Zanzibari beach and at the same time provide all the expected luxury and comfort and allow the visitor to enjoy one of the most beautiful sunsets on this world. 

The most noticeable element is the flat roof that it's alien around the beach. Nobody dared so far to make a flat roof in this very rainy place. The flat roof is in reality a cleverly hidden gable roof from simple corrugated iron sheets.

The beach bar’s special timber structure allowed us to give a funky/playful appearance in combination with great use of space. The combination of modern, clear and somehow minimal design with the traditional building and handcraft techniques, brings an amazing result that we cannot really fit into a specific architectural style.


The concept was to understand the existing, respect it, embrace it and enhance it, make a plan but be open to alterations and suggestions coming from the experienced local practices, and to try to combine all of this with a result that visitors would appreciate. Local materials, a local workforce and respect for the Zanzibari culture and way of working. Passive design strategies, which are absolutely essential when designing something in tropical areas. More specifically, the roof has an opening in the middle of it all along the longer side, leading the hot air created under the short ceiling, outwards, creating a space were no mechanical ways for cooling are needed. We also incorporated the existing coconut trees, instead of taking them down, for better cooling results.

Publication: Africanism.org


Amélie Chauvin, AforA Architects 

zanzibar 2015