Dezeen Magazine

Coral Pavilion by CmDesign Atelier

Watch our Architecture Project Talk about Coral Pavilion by CmDesign Atelier

Nigerian architect Tosin Oshinowo concluded Dezeen and Gaggenau's Architecture Project Talks series with a presentation about Coral Pavilion. The webinar has ended but you can re-watch it by registering here.

Coral Pavilion is located outside Lagos and is accessible by boat

In the talk, the architect discussed the building's materiality and structure along with the challenges and merits of designing for a remote location.

Coral Pavilion, which was completed earlier this year, sits within a verdant coastal landscape just southwest of Lagos, Nigeria, and is accessible only by boat.

Designed as a sanctuary from the city's "frenetic energy", the simple, linear building hosts a rooftop terrace for sunbathing and a series of open living spaces that connect seamlessly with a coral-coloured pool terrace.

More enclosed areas are to the north of the building plan, creating shelter from prevailing winds

The roof terrace, which runs the full length and breadth of the beach house, sits on top of structural walls that enclose the kitchen and bathrooms. The remaining open space created by the overhang of the roof terrace is occupied by a living, dining and bar area.

Beyond the swimming pool area is a sandy beach.

"It was such an amazing experience walking from the lagoon shoreline across to the beachfront access through the landscape and unsettling the butterflies who make this location their home," Oshinowo told Dezeen.

A warm colour palette draws from the natural surroundings

To disrupt the building's rigid geometry and white colour scheme, the designer added furniture and architectural details in warm and bright colours drawn from the natural surroundings.

"The mustard yellow, olive green and brown of the coconut trees, in relation to the coral sand, the aqua of the ocean and the blue of the sky was breathtakingly beautiful as well as calming," said the architect.

"Igbo wooden tables and the Tarantik & Egger al fresco shower all play an important role in softening up the hardness of the base material as well as the sterility of such a minimalist aesthetic."

The bar area and other living spaces are open to the swimming pool

Oshinowo founded CmDesign Atelier in 2012. Her practice, which is grounded in Yoruba culture and history, aims to embody contemporary African design and "afro-minimalism" – a form of architecture that she describes as a responsive reflection of the past, present and future of architecture and design, which prioritises sustainability, resilience and poise.

In collaboration with the Nigerian government and United Nations Development Programme, Oshinowo designed a village in northwest Nigeria for a community displaced by Boko Haram.

Oshinowo was also curator of the 2019 Lagos Biennale and a judge for the 2022 Dezeen Awards. She was recently announced as the curator of the 2023 Sharjah Architecture Triennale.

Architecture Project Talk: Coral Pavilion took place at 1:00pm London time on 9 December 2022. Register to re-watch the webinar.

The photography is by Tolu Sanusi.

Dezeen x Gaggenau Architecture Project Talks

This series of Architecture Project Talks was produced by Dezeen in collaboration with luxury kitchen appliance brand Gaggenau. Gaggenau works with architects and designers to create professional-grade culinary appliances for the home, which are tailored to design specifications.

Sign up to Gaggenau's mailing list via the webinar registration pages to hear more. Read more about Dezeen partnership content here.

More images

Coral Pavilion is a beach house in Lagos that was designed by cmDesign Atelier
Coral Pavilion is a beach house in Lagos that was designed by cmDesign Atelier
Coral Pavilion is a beach house in Lagos that was designed by cmDesign Atelier