Built environments have always been conceived in response to the needs, behaviours and desires of people. Our most beloved places have, during their development, had their creators spend time understanding the people they are designing for. Time understanding the communities who will interact with the project is the basis of human-centred design and user experience in the development of places.

We must understand how to make a place and its community special – to create meaningful experiences that supercharge the community and their values. This is what makes a place unique and memorable, it’s what encourages different groups to take part, tell others and keep coming back.

The connection to local culture, behaviours and values, as well as the profile of the groups of people who will live, work, learn, exercise, recover, grow, play in, and visit is essential understanding to ensure our development concept is authentic and relevant to end-users.

Through our research and engagement with these audiences we mapped local interactions and opportunities and identified their needs, behaviours and shared values that helped inform the vision and concept for the project.

From the active seniors who value the quality of life that exists in the Algarve, spending their days eating well, exercising or relaxing in restoring wellness spaces or local salt spas. Engaging with local artisanal crafts and culture, to the local workers who value the healthy and safe community to raise their children, the convenient and nutritious offering and amenity, the community and co-working spaces, and the green spaces to relax and entertain. The diverse hospitality accommodation will complement and not compete. The medical and wellness clinics providing the village’s own health and wellness ‘insurance’. The vision and principles of Tavira Sustainable Wellness Village will become the living experience of the community.

Ultimately, the vision for the development is – ‘a place to live well’ – realised through the shared values of this new village – healthy living, sustainable community community and shared discovery.

Andrew Coutts
Master Developer | CEO – ILM Group

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Wellness Lifestyle Communities

The developer of the Tavira Wellness Village concept has considered two key concept drivers in designing the DNA of this envisaged sustainable community:

  • The Sustainable Development goals of the United Nations.

  • The Wellness Lifestyle Real Estate movement.

Putting people’s wellness at the centre of the conception, design, creation and development of our homes and communities.

Key related consumer behaviour movements are:

  • The green/sustainable carbon neutral/positive building.

  • Design-driven movements.

  • The ‘less is more’ movement.

  • The food movement.

As we look to the future of wellness real estate and communities, we will integrate:

  • Smarter use of technologies and innovations.

  • New metrics to capture the Return on Wellness (ROW).

  • A deeper exploration of the relationships between physical and virtual communities, our individual/personal wellness and community/planetary wellness.

The Vision

The values of Tavira Wellness Village are currently being echoed around the world; but the way they are realised and how these interventions work together within the community context is where the magic lies.

Within the Tavira masterplan, the architectural vernacular will shape the physical through the creation of a central ‘praça’ – the activated heart, with restaurant and café spill out and a place for community gatherings and events. With quiet spaces to rest and engage with the community, as well as safe places for children to play.

Beyond the delicious, regional food offering, the local café is also a hub for cycle hires and pit-stops, guided nature walks and a showcase for local craft; the community gardens and allotments will be ‘green gyms’ – integrated spaces for exercise, nature and nutrition.

These integrated experiences are the result of the research, engagement and thoughtful design based on the shared values of the people interacting with the master planning of the project concept.

Sustainability Principals

PLACE: Ecology of Place – communities are designed with ecology at thier core, literally!

MATERIALS: The design philosophy focuses on simplification and only building what we need using natural materials that have low embodied carbon.

ENERGY: We are aiming for a fossil fuel free building powered entirely from renewable energy sources.

WATER: Reducing water demand whilst also maintaining water quality are core principles of the TWV community.

AIR: Clean air is a critical environmental determinant of human health.

LIGHT: Light pollution is defined as excessive, misdirected or obtrusive at Tavira Wellness Village we aim for minimal.

NOURISHMENT: The local food environment of communities is inextricably linked to dietary behaviours and food choices.

MOVEMENT: Regular physical activity will be considered for health and well-being including reduced risk of chronic diseases.

SOUND: Acoustic comfort is a state of satisfaction with the sound environment.

THERMAL COMFORT: Extreme hot and cold temperatures can result in increased risk of hyperthermia as well as all-cause morbidity and mortality.