ORDOS 100 #42: Rojkind Arquitectos


This villa is located in plot #67 of the ORDOS project.

Architects: Rojkind Arquitectos
Project Principal: Michel
Project leader: Agustin Pereyra
Location: Ordos, Inner Mongolia,
Project team: Juan Carlos Vidals (3D massing) Alejandro Biguria, Moritz Melchert, Mónica Orozco, Phillip Jung, José Moreno, Laura Rodriguez , Roberto Gil Will, Tere Levy, Alan Rahmane
Structural Engineer: Juan Felipe Heredia
Design year: 2008
Construction year: 2009-2010
Curator: Ai Weiwei, Beijing, China
Client: Jiang Yuan Water Engineering Ltd, Inner Mongolia, China
Constructed Area: 1,000 sqm aprox

sections 01

Traditional cave dwellings in China, often referred as Yaodong, have been passed down from generations as they have proven to be superior in harsh environments particular to Inner Mongolia. Their unique typology has protected generations from the harsh tundra climate and the burning summers by providing thermal performance superior to those that reside on the surface. Likewise, local fauna has evolved to reside below the surface to survive, such as the Mongolian toad, or as Mongolians refer it, guroot, which is known to hibernate through the winter in 1-2 meter deep holes.

Inner Mongolia has had a long tradition of tribesmen dependant on nomadic lifestyles moving their herds in search for better grasslands and campsites. Even today, a large percentage of Mongolians still subside in the steppes and follow a nomadic lifestyle.


Today we find ourselves in a world of increased mobility in which transportation networks permit endless possibilities of travel for work, living, and pleasure we remain connected. In this new real of mobile populations, merchandise, and in formation, a new breed of nomads arises, dependant on the environments they travel much like the traditional nomads.

Gimme Shelter moves away from the temporality of nomadism but maintains the underlying principal of nomadic dwellings; which is to shelter from detrimental climatic conditions. The Villa responds not only to site specificity but attempts to provide a unique shelter for the modern nomad. Cues have been abstracted from sand-dune morphology and generation into the formal expression of the villa. Gimme Shelter submerges itself into the landscape, providing warmth through the winter and cool air during the summer.


The Villa not only protects its inhabitants from harsh climatic conditions, but provides a unique experience for dynamic-programmatic circulation between private, public, and service spaces. Interstitial space serves as circulation for inhabitants and provides unique opportunities for gardens filled with native flora. Furthermore, the notion of void and solid has been understood as a formal distribution of private and public space.


As you enter the villa through the hard protective shell on the northern face, you find yourself on the second floor. Through the entrance hall, you slowly uncover the intricate play of the inner program volumes. On the west side of the Villa you find all services and support and program progressively turns into levels of privacy towards the east, ending with the master room on the extreme east. Your transition through the inner volumes is bathed with light that shines through the carefully perforated southern wall. Apertures progressively increase towards the interior gardens in which the perforations become denser and allow for cross winds to move through the villa evidently cooling the house during the summer days. As you move yourself into the third and fourth floors the inner workings of the villa unravel before your eyes. The play of levels, which are connected by a series of bridges, enriches your experience, as every space is unique in character and shape. Ceilings become terraces for other semi-private activities; walls and ceilings begin to shift in different directions, the play of outside and inside space gets blurred as the inner gardens separate program, suddenly an understanding of the forces that shaped this villa becomes evident.

Cite: Saieh, Nico. "ORDOS 100 #42: Rojkind Arquitectos" 21 Jul 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 28 May 2015. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=29617>
  • Mookie Wilson

    Ghengis Khan thanks you for your effort and respectfully demands more windows for gazing at birds of prey.

    • 00Arch

      hhohoho…nice said

  • rw

    love the surrealist-ish renderings.

    are the tigers and headlights a little too sigfried + roy though?

    cool project. I like that are kinda playful with the presentation.

  • http://hechoensitio.blogspot.com/ Eduardo A.

    The interior spaces are really interesting, the external cover leaves some doubts in story to its functionality… Same I find an excellent project

  • L&V

    They should post ORDOS 100 on a different website… They’re not very appealing

  • deaw

    wow..cool renderings!

  • tchouah

    The renderings mad me suspisius but nothing to say: interesting interior space with kind of interior exterior spaces that seems quite relevant for mongolia. Nice shape and texture at the end.
    But where are the other houses ? Alone in the desert is one thing, in the middle of an strange collection of wierd contemporanean house an other…

  • kidybang

    I think the same thing Tchouah…They always show houses in a clear site but what will it be when all the house would be there together?

  • josep

    I actually love this one! I’ve been harsh in the past about ORDOS but I’m starting to believe this project is highly curated, if you noticed they are very consistent weather we like it or not
    Love the renderings my favourites since those beautiful drawings produced by Diller & Scofidio

  • Emilio

    Is this a house for a family with problems?
    A home where nobody wants to be with sombody else?
    Rojkind is always just trying to “look cool”. I don´t see much more in this project. The fragmentation and geometry in the interior is terrible. This is not a pace to live. The cover is awfull. The efficency in spaces doesn´t exist.

    • Punjabi

      do u even know what ordos project is? so save ur ‘design school’ lame theory

  • aldo

    What about context, I thought Ordos was a country club for rich people, not a mistic dessert…

  • luna

    “Traditional cave dwellings in China, often referred as Yaodong, have been passed down from generations as they have proven to be superior in harsh environments particular to Inner Mongolia.”
    it is not right. Yaotong or Traditional cave dwellings are existing in the north of China, not in Inner Mongolia,but Shanxi Province.
    FYI, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yaodong

    • Danie

      I thought it should be inspired by a mongolian yurt rather than Chinese cave dwellings…

  • simon


  • Scott

    Are they hoping to get this built before everyone else or did they forget why its called ORDOS 100?

  • Pablo

    if gengis kan effort , may be can put the arrow in one of the hole.

  • cad

    Hey want to go skateboarding in the sand?
    Sure let me bring a shotgun in case we run into giant hawks and Ghengis’ men.

  • mimi

    Renderings are very attractive and interior spaces seem interesting too…. good job….fyi….bedroom 4 is missing a toilet, might want to check the code.

  • sana

    ummm i dont get the part where in the concept you talk about the “Traditional cave dwellings in China, often referred as Yaodong, have been passed down from generations as they have proven to be superior…follow a nomadic lifestyle.Cues have been abstracted from sand-dune morphology and generation into the formal expression of the villa.”

    Okay when i read this i felt as if the whole space will have an ambiance of the traditional lifestyle. i mean in a contemporary way. But the exterior and the interior are two different languages.The interior doesnt seem in context.I mean had i not known where this place is i would have never known its a Chinese Mongolian context.You know what i mean when i say “sense of place”.It seems as if a modern western interior has been wrapped in a contextual facade (See how the exterior may not be traditional but it still follows the concept you’ve explained as compared to the interior).

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  • Travis

    I’m pretty sure that stainless steel appliances and a table that fashionably seats 10 are fit for the nomadic lifestyle…
    Any thought given in the brief is basically nullified by the complete conceptual dilemma of designing for a specially built country club in the desert.

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  • Sonic

    love the deisgn. and the tigers. and the eagles.

  • Oflodor

    Rojkind!!! There is no other!!!

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  • Liam

    lol the car in the night render is way outa proportion, well thought out project tho

  • Dre

    Are you sure this isn’t a video game?