Sanya Farm Lab by CLOU architects, the WAF Future Projects finalist 2021

Sanya Farm Lab is a 4000 sqm 4-storey exhibition space, located in Nanfan High Tech District of Sanya, the southernmost city on tropical Hainan Island. The design focus of the project is to combine the climate characteristics of Sanya, integrate the regional scientific and technological agricultural elements, and create a multi-functional research compound and commercial display space.


Photo credit: Shining Laboratory

Landmark of The District

Nanfan District of Sanya is transforming into a tropical agriculture scientific research hub. The local government is investing in researches on environmental change, land/water scarcity, and food production issues, as well as the growing demand of middle-class Chinese’s desire to return to the natural field and rural area tourism. The completion of the Nanshan Farm Lab is based on the modern organic agriculture display and the upgrading and evolution of lifestyles. It blurs the traditional boundaries between nature and the city and narrows the distance between technology and life.


Photo credit: Shining Laboratory

Not Just An Exhibition Center

The Farm Lab integrates and covering high-tech exhibitions such as agricultural robotics, indoor vertical farming, etc. It brings a brand new “farm-to-table” experience. The wish of the design is to present the advanced technologies in front of the public in real-time, highlighting the progress which agricultural techs made in lifestyle and education territory. And its key point is to blur the boundaries between indoors and outdoors, maximizing visitors’ communication and interactions inside and outside the architectural building.


Photo credit: Shining Laboratory

Platforms, Stairs, and Shade

The architecture structure was developed into three steps: first, constructed outdoor public space. Set up an outdoor public space with clear scales and rich levels through strategically combining four storeys’ functional massing. The cantilever on the second floor created a semi-outdoor rain shelter for the first floor and a relaxing outdoor public platform for outside dining and children’s playing for the third floor.


Photo credit: Shining Laboratory


Photo credit: Shining Laboratory

Second, knitted outdoor public spaces together through outdoor circulation. Used a spiral stair and huge stairs of the multi-functional theatre to connect the indoor and outdoor, which made the flow more frequently to go outside and finally achieved the thorough connection.


Photo credit: Shining Laboratory

Third, enhanced the comfort level of outdoor space. The 800mm deep roof grid structure reduced the sunlight absorption by 70%. It provided a shelter for the outdoor platform, and at the same time ensured natural ventilation and an open view. The grid structure is inspired by the traditional house of Hainan Li nationality, which is a modern performance of the long-established architecture context.


Photo credit: Shining Laboratory


Photo credit: Shining Laboratory


Photo credit: Shining Laboratory

About CLOU architects

CLOU is an international design studio with award-winning expertise in architecture, interiors, and landscapes. The team designs their projects-many of them on a large scale-around community nodes and social spaces. A community of 65+ talents from China, and all over the world enjoy working collaboratively and imaginatively on bespoke projects. Their demanding clients range from shopping mall developers to house builders, hotel operators, and schools. In the process, CLOU architects strive to realize projects that will positively influence the people involved in its process, the environment, and the communities who live and work there.