Villa Paya-Paya by Aboday architects



Architects Aboday have completed a holiday home called Villa Paya-Paya in Bali, Indonesia.


The two-storey building is arranged around courtyards and surrounded by water of varying depth, which creates a shallow pond at the entrance, jacuzzi and large swimming pool.


The building itself consists of a concrete, box-shaped facade with a separate master bedroom, made using traditional wooden construction and a coconut leaf roof.


The site was formerly a papaya plantation and pig farm, situated in a residential area of the island.


Photographs by Happy Lim Photography.

Here's some more information from the architects:


Villa Paya-Paya

This villa located in Seminyak, a bustling residential area in the heart of Bali, Indonesia. Standing on an approximatelly 750 sqm land, the site bordered on the North by 6 meter public road, and by a pangkung (dried, old river in Balinese) on the South. Client request to have a holiday home for the small family of 4, with a simple program: large living dining, large servant quarter, 1 master bedroom with huge bathroom and 2 smaller bedroom. They will only use this villa during the holiday season, while for the rest of the year, it will be rented out by the property agent to a group of wealthy tourists that are flocking to the recently-hip area.


Bali was always sought after by holiday makers because of its magical ambience (most people here are Hindu, hence the number of temples that can be found in one location), or view (of the sea, sprawling rice fields with river or the misty mountain). But this site doesn't have all those; it was a papaya plantation and pig farm before being bought by the present owner. The only potential that architect could explore is the surrounding mature plantation with huge banyan trees as the point of interest, right across the pangkung.


The sloping site (the lowest point is 4 meter from the main road), gives an advantage to the design. Aboday, as an architect, doesn't want to have an imposing building. The villa needs to respect human scale and the main road as a main thoroughfare to the temple. This road is always crowded during the Hindu celebration, and anything taller than coconut trees will be an intrusion to their ritual.


The 2 level villa appears as a friendly single-storey building from the road, sunk in the rest of the room program on its ground level. Rather than evoking the surrounding typical Balinese building of sloping, coconut leaf roof, Aboday choose a simple concrete white box as the facade of the building.


The traditional sloping roof will still be used in the master bedroom pavilion with its wood structure, hidden behind the white box facade, as an element of surprise among the domination of white forms.


The massing of this villa follow the traditional balinese pattern of 'natah' or courtyard. In this villa, the courtyard is an extension of the open plan living and dining room, transforms into water body that dominate almost the entire garden, gradually changing from shallow reflecting pond beneath the cascading entrance step, the jacuzzi under the cantilever balcony, and main swimming pool surrounding the master bedroom pavilion. The effect is anything but floating building. The entire villa as if sitting on the water (or paya-paya in Bali), hence the name Villa Paya-paya.






Posted on Friday January 2nd 2009 at 5:34 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • k. rimane

    Brilliant. a little heaven for those who can afford it.
    Islamic architecture influence is well noticed.

    • BongCastaneda

      What Islamic influence?

  • windbag

    gracious, lovely use of water and landscape.

  • snowstorm

    I love the atmospheric effect of the house, and I love the water treatment. It does not get better than that. Balancing the white color with the vivid dark color of wood is brilliant.

  • vampire

    Bali is famous for mosquitoes!

    What can you do to avoid getting bitten by mozzies on your trip to Bali?
    • Don’t wear black clothing, mosquitoes love dark places.
    • Don’t sit next to bushes at night time.
    • Protect yourself especially at ‘bug hour’ (sunset).
    • Use mozzie repellent.
    • Wear long pants and a long sleeve shirt
    • Go to higher elevations, the coastal areas are the worst.
    • Burn a coil to clear your room, then leave it outside in front of the door. Mozzies often linger outside the door waiting to get in.
    • When sitting or sleeping use a strong fan (greater wind speed than 3 mph) which mozzies cannot fly in.
    • Sleep with a mosquito net.
    • Sleep in a AC room, keeping the windows shut at all times.
    • Drink so much Bintang you don’t notice the bites.
    (from baliblog)

  • andi

    u should ask MTV for more photos, i’m sure they were invited :p

  • Anton

    Nice material and proportion. Hmmm….curious about how is the roof system (flat roof?) could be done in Bali, a tropic climatic area.

  • lolesle

    Nice work! INDONESIAN ARCHITECTS!!!! JUST SHOW EM HOW!!!! but hey… lantai 1, lantai 2, lantai atap!?!??!! =)

    alam… eben… keep working hard guys!!!

    • george effendi

      lantai 1 = 1st floor plan
      lantai 2 = 2nd floor plan
      lantai atap = roof plan

  • vampire

    it looks environmental responsive, but it’s not. perfect western cubic squares featuring the design and it looks functional, but it’s not.

  • hareza

    nice work guys!! I love the entrance.

    @lolesle : ‘budayakan berbahasa indonesia..’ lol..

  • Ridya Subiandoro

    Great piece of architecture. It’s beautifully and well designed by trying to blend the building and it’s surrounded nature. Love the most is the view showing the effect of floating building. I think it really captures the idea of it’s name: Paya paya…keep up the good work guys! Can’t wait to see next buildings coming.

  • Rubi Roesli

    Nice! Keep up the good work guys!

  • tommy dj

    congrats, Bejo, Ary, Johansen… nice work there…

    PS: kapan aboday bakal buka cabang singapore? j/k

  • Well, I saw this house go up over the past year or so. It went up quickly, and looked intriguing, but not especially innovative. It is located, sadly, on a tiny piece of land, in a dank dip of land right on the very edge of a shoddy backroad in Seminyak, and it’s threatened by the almost immediate incursion of a major multi-lane highway about to cut through the land almost adjacent to it. Road noise, already significant, will be more significant still, logarhythimically so.

    Seeing all of these images, I realise that this project is indeed innovative, and with many intelligent ways to manifest beauty and function within constraints of the envelope and those of local capabilities and materials. For that I say bravissima.

    For location, I have to bit my tongue. But who could have known. Obviously the owner didn’t know. Many people arriving in Bali see something that looks like paradise to them, but with limited knowledge of the local conditions and situations. What a shame.

    Ah well, nevertheless, it is a very efficient, well-designed, extremely-urban home. No rural idyll, no paradise park . . . but looks often deceive.


  • Whoops . . . who did this text? Paya-paya is not water in Balinese. Toya, or Tirtha or Yeh are the only Balinese words for water.

    Hmmm . . . and let me tell you this road is not busy for Hindu ceremonies, it’s just plain busy. It’s one of the most useful shortcuts to avoid the choking traffic of other arterials in the area, especially during rush hours.

    I really do like this project, don’t get me wrong, but I’m losing patience with brochure rhetoric in general, especially in Bali! We really do need to get real.

    Great house. Its merits speak for themselves, no need to resort to gilded lilies!



  • slater

    spectacular, what a joy it must be to live in that home in that setting!

    I wish there were sections, plans, and interior shots though….

  • slater

    LARGER sections, plans…..that is

  • Lia

    Really like the combination of all material… very cozy contemporary Bali design…

  • Prilla

    I like the Idea of Floating building impression and stuff, But too bad the land is quite limited so that the floating impression is not hugely exposed.
    But I still like the design,though..nice work.
    It must be very comfortable to live in.

  • Gordon

    I like the style, the building. I am trying to understanding how you design it,thank you!

  • kiran kumar shetty

    this is really very near to the heart of the nature…………

  • Great design on a great place.