The design of this resort is inspired by the vernacular architecture of Desa Sade in Lombok, home of the indigenous Sasak people. There, the houses are arranged in an organized manner with a neat, grid-like, circulation. The layout of each villa is divided into three zones – the Bale Dalem (innermost, private area), Inan Bale (the slightly elevated living area) and Bale Luar (veranda), just like a Sasak house. Each of the villa compound has its own detached sitting pavilion, again resembling a Sasak compound consisting of a main Bale and its detached Sekenam. Nestled within the array of houses is a Lumbung (storage for commodities) which, in the resort is represented by itself at every walkway junction. Just outside the village boundary wall sits the Bale Bonter (gathering hall), made present in the design by the beachfront restaurant. Rattan weaving and indigenous Tenun patterns are widely used for the interior theme to stamp an even stronger local identity.
The natural contour at Desa Sade gives rise to houses positioned in various levels, with pathways linked by ramps and steps. Bringing such a contoured arrangement into the resort helps to ensure the villas located further away from the beach are sitting on higher grounds, allowing unobstructed view to the sea horizon. Due to the sloping-up over the depth of Desa Sade, from a distance, the houses’ roofs appear to be stacking over each other with the bigger mass being placed at the background. This inspires the architectural form of the four-storey hotel wings where the layered roofs hover on top of each other. This creates a contemporary design language in the narrow, horizontal linear gaps from end to end to allow uninterrupted ocean view from the suites. It also reflects the architects’ preference for a strong horizontal proportion in their design.
With these architectural derivations of Gili Meno’s native Sasak’s village planning principles, on a site surrounded by 270 degrees of white sandy beaches and a center pool that resembles the Lake Meno in the middle of the island, the name minimeno just seems to ring the right tune.