Avana Apartments / Aboday Architects


Architect: Aboday Architects ()
Location: Jakarta, Indonesia
Project Architect: PT. Parama Loka Cipta
Developer: PT. Asiana Lintas Cipta
Management Construction: PT. Arkonin
Structure Consultant: PT. Agoes Kurnia
M & E Consultant: PT. Policipta Multidesain
Quantity Surveyor: PT. Korra Antarbuana
Lighting Consultant: PT. Litac Consultant
Photographs: Happy Lim

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This 16 storey apartment project is located in Kemang area in South Jakarta, an established neighborhood famous for its collection of mature trees and vast greeneries. The initial concept of this project was an 8 storey apartment with balconies, done by SCDA Pte. Ltd. It has been abandoned for half a year in 2006 before client decided to appoint (Indonesia) to revive the project. As its first project in Indonesia, Aboday decided to retain only the project’s internal modular unit plan, while changing the rest of external design, including rising it to 16 storeys as a result of intense negotiation with local building regulator.


Living in an apartment unit way above ground is some kind of new experience for local people which used to the idea of staying in landed property, hence the introduction of extensive balcony surrounding each unit, mimicking a ‘yard’ in ‘normal’ house. Comprising of 64 units apartment ranging between 180 sqm to 460 sqm (for the penthouse), with each spacious private space and service area; this apartment is an epitome of landed house that stacked on top of each other creating a home in the sky. The idea of a fluid internal-external space is also explored in every space creation on this building. A 6 meter height lobby, which opens directly to its public pool and garden, start this experience on the ground floor when people enter the building, leading to a glass enclosed private lobby. This concept of internal-external space is further explored in each unit above. There is almost no visible boundary between internal unit, balcony (and even the sky…….), as a result of extensive use of tempered clear glass panel for door, window and balcony’s railing.


The main feature of this architecture totem however is the introduction of protruding balconies and private pool for certain units, positioned in rhythm extended 3 meter beyond building perimeter, releasing the ‘tension’ within the units toward the view of Jakarta’s downtown skyline. The 2.5 x 11 m pool with its clear glass enclosure, offer a hair-rising swimming experience to the resident. Next to it, there is a soil garden and reflecting pond, acting as a catalyst between private home and the building’s urban context. When most of apartment buildings in Jakarta always been identified by the use of “polished” materials, Aboday is interested in creating a high rise building with more ‘textured’ look. They envision Avana Apartment to have textured façade that ‘less reflective’. It absorbs the surrounding, instead of reflecting them, giving it a more friendly gesture. This is inline with the idea of capturing the spirit of Kemang, whereby the design of the building is such, that greeneries will be elevated in the air. Also with spacious balcony that they have, people are expected to grow their own mini garden vertically, or even growing trees on their ‘open to sky’ protruding balconies. Along the years, when trees and green dominate each of these spaces, the play of interwoven between concrete-glass and greeneries will let Avana Apartment appears as a giant leafy tapestry, mimicking the surrounding Kemang upward.

This project has been completed on May 2009; and some tenants have already moved in, injecting life to the entire building.

Cite: "Avana Apartments / Aboday Architects" 30 Jul 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 21 May 2015. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=30491>
  • uglybanana

    ……nothing but ordinary

  • HarDav

    Nice lobby, love the piers.
    Cool random protruding balconies – nice underside details, a bit trendy but i guess that sells… everywhere
    Not sure about the double vertical element there on the sides.
    hmm, reminded my of niaga tower in Jakarta

  • http://www.unrelatedtopics.com sebastijan

    aside from the jutting balconies it has a bit of a communist block housing feel… didn’t we learn anything?

  • MB

    Seriously, a work like this gets to be in Arch Daily ?

  • ronici

    such Singaporean style, where’s Indonesian style?

    please don’t just create building
    which not similar to Indonesian culture, or show Indonesia architecture,,

    is not friendly,,
    Is there original architecture in Indonesia for now?

    • wai

      appreciate your comment NIM :)
      I think there should be ideas behind this design
      perhaps is not fully explained in the project brief in archdaily :)

  • NIM

    Seriously, if the comment like that of MB are allowed to be published here, this building are more than welcome in my opinion. What’s wrong with an opportunity to see architecture from different corners of the world. Like it or hate it please discuss architecturally.

    Personally, I appreciate the articulation of the balcony facing the north while avoiding the hotter south. It does suit a transitional space of tropical climate, though it should not be only the balcony but also the slab/roof that needs more experimentation.

    • ronici

      NIM says:What’s wrong with an opportunity to see architecture from different corners of the world. Like it or hate it please discuss architecturally.

      It is not about hate or opportunity,,
      It is about where is the locality, and environment approach, to the surrounding site,

      Did you already think about touching the culture and respect the local behaviour, once again architecture is not just create the building and form, but it is more about how we dissolve the problem, on the entire site and existing culture.

    • http://www.pavilion95.com Fisher

      In Jakarta, south site is mostly cooler than the north. Many believe that hottest sunlight comes from the west, but it would only take about 3 hr/day, unlike from the north that received almost 6hr/day in a hot&dry season.

      It’s a new type for highrise apartment though…

    • NIM

      Agree with you Ronici, I haven’t looked in details. It’s more like Singaporean design as you may call it. Indonesia has rich cultural and historical references and I understand why you may think that this project missed challenging that opportunity.

      To Fisher, sorry for giving wrong information. As I was in Bangkok, I thought that it should be similar, but yes Jakarta must be located below the equator.

  • gigi.googoo

    nice apartment building……..good job for you…..

  • arie prasetyo

    congrats for aboday
    good work

    just one comments
    might be a lot more interesting if the balciny is glass-floored
    just like what they did in sears tower chichago

    cheers to aboday

  • d

    i think it just doesn’t give any trigger.. so “nothing”..

  • http://www.pavilion95.com Fisher

    Nice:)…this one’s located in Kemang right?

    Just wondering though, why would you put many glass opening n open balcony exposed to the north, while here in Jakarta we have 3/4 yr of sunlight from the north (unlike many who believe the sun ‘only’ shine from east-west).

    Have you ever been experiencing anxiety of standing close to transparent railing on an open 20th floor?

  • s

    I think people tend to forget that built projects aren’t the sole product of the architect. There’s that single participant that rules over all! THE CLIENT! At the end of the day, if the client doesn’t like it, it won’t get built! I’m sure a lot of diplomatic gymnastics had to me made in order to win small battles like the balconies…
    It’s sober, has attention to detail and it looks quite solid from the photos! This is already such an achievement especially in Asia where the preferred “style” are still the neobaroque wannabes
    Would be nice to have initial concept to compare on how it developed.

    • nardem

      I agree with ‘s’ completely. It s not easy to built in Asia, especially in Jakarta a building like this. The balconies and jutting pools were certainly something that we must give credit to architect. For sure,it need sweat, blood and tears to convince client, as they didn’t come cheap, in a country where construction cost is the lowest among others in Asia. And talking about context, I think some of you is just too lazy to read the text. It is just our mindset to always expecting to see some cultural references in a building from Asia. Come on… we should move away from typology. I won’t expect to see a pitch roof or wood material in an 16 storey building! Interesting to read that architect envision this building to become textured building, a tapestry of concrete and greeneries…I feel this is a strong enough context for a building in Jakarta (I read Jakarta has less public park compare to other cities in the world..). Cant wait to see it materialize.

  • skubanga

    Long live the 1950s …..

  • ForFunSake

    Interesting design execution, the protruding facade looks appealing from side elevation but not as much from front elevation (is it a wise decision to choose tempered glass railing as it makes the building facade looks really flat?)

    Somehow the idea described on the project brief of adapting the landed housing lifestyle isn’t really shown.

    I wonder if “intense negotiation” means some amount of grease money as Kemang actually is not a medium to highrise residential zone.

  • Wargo

    A liitle bit retro.

  • http://raum.tk/ rangga umbas

    nice and simple.
    good job there

  • http://www.rvnarch.co.cc Erfin Infitar

    Clean n Sleek..
    love those random sticking out balcony
    sempet sekilas lihat design nya seperti kampus dr pd residential
    still a great job though..
    di kasih gratis satu jg ga nolak gw hehe



  • raymond

    “such Singaporean style, where’s Indonesian style?

    please don’t just create building
    which not similar to Indonesian culture, or show Indonesia architecture,,

    is not friendly,,
    Is there original architecture in Indonesia for now?”

    quite agree with ronici, but they mention that the initial concept was done by SCDA, no wonder it looks like singaporean architecture, nevertheless, i think aboday has managed to explore the design elegantly

  • wartian

    the monster scale kill the sense of intimacy of the neighborhood.

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  • octo

    it might looks ordinary from the picture, but if you live in Jakarta, you know the urban context well, experiencing the site by your own, you might have another opinion. As a citizen of Jakarta I personally think this is a beautiful design with a tidy accent of scrambled balcony, and I was like: “whoaaa” for the first time I saw the building (although sometimes I also do “whoaa” for some building in Jakarta because they’re tacky and very bad at color and geometry composition, but not for this one) anyway, I just thought that they should pick another material for the facade because its getting a bit filthy now.