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    Design Thinking workshop - ورشة عمل عن التفكير التصميمي
    9-7-2017: Go to Event

Hawyet Siwa

| Hawyet Siwa
Hawyet Siwa
Status/stage of development: Registration in progress

Located at the base of Shali Historic Fortress in the western desert, Hawyet Siwa is an initiative rooted in the schools of environmentalism, sustainability, and the power of partnership. 

Part cultural center and part ecotel, Hawyet Siwa, will not only provide cultural, educational, and artistic activities to the Siwi community, but will also be Egypt¹s first off-the-grid ecotel—running exclusively on solar energy and biogas. Constructed entirely from recyclable/reusable material, in accordance with Siwi traditional architecture, Hawyet Siwa will be the first hotel in Egypt to be built entirely from shipping containers. This unique design approach embodies the belief, upon which Hawyet Siwa is founded: That there is always an alternative to what is considered the “accepted norm.” They envision an environmentally sound space that celebrates the spirit of the earth, the community, and cultural exchange.

Ecotel

We want to inspire others to reassess the way they live and how they interact with their planet, by realizing that the “norm” can be a relative and ever evolving notion. Our priority is to begin with changing our “norm,” to make this world a better place for future generations, by actively reducing our fossil fuel dependence and motivating others to explore the beneficial possibilities of a life outside of the “big city.” Accordingly, visitors (from tourists to academics and activists interested in our work) will be able to participate in workshops and seminars on select issues pertaining to sustainable population distribution, local culture promotion and sustainable energy integration. Such activities will not only provide an important income for Siwa, but will also be filmed and edited to produce training and informative videos which the Hawyet Siwa will continually release into the public domain.

The Hawyet Siwa Main Building will include a Reception, Lobby, Kitchen, Cultural Center (Seminar Hall, Library, General Activity Room, Workshop, Class Room and Computer Center), Restaurant and Café, Laundry Room, Bathrooms and Management Room. The Building will be constructed according to the Siwi traditional building methods.

The Hawyet Siwa Ecotel will be based on Karsheef (Siwi traditional construction method), constructed with 10 (forty foot high cube) shipping containers (recyclable), insolated with SuperAdobe, and covered with the traditional Siwi Tafla (Siwi eco-friendly substitute for cement). The Ecotel will host 16 rooms for more than 32 guests. 

Hawyet Siwa Ecotel will meet the following criteria:

- Dependence on the natural environment

- Ecological sustainability

- Proven contribution to conservation

- Provision of environmental training programs

- Incorporation of cultural considerations

- Provision of an economic return to the local community

 

The Ecotel will follow strict green guidelines to ensure that their guests are staying in a safe, non-toxic and energy-efficient accommodation. Here are some basic characteristics:

- Staff uses non-toxic cleaning agents and laundry detergent

- 100% organic cotton sheets, towels and mattresses

- Non-smoking indoor environment

- Renewable energy sources (solar energy & biogas)

- Bulk organic soap and amenities instead of individual packages to reduce waste

- Guest room and hotel lobby recycling bins

- Towel and sheet re-use (guests can tell staff to leave these slightly used items to reduce water consumption)

- Energy-efficient lighting

- On-site transportation with green vehicles (bicycles & local donkey carts)

- Serve organic and local-grown food

- Non-disposable dishes

- Offers a fresh-air exchange system

- Graywater recycling, which is the reuse of kitchen, bath and laundry water for garden and landscaping

- Recycling program

 

Culture Center

All activities taking place at the Cultural Center will be free for Siwis, providing them with a Siwi language and literature education facility, foreign languages education facility, general activity room, handcraft workshop & showroom, library,  seminar room and a playground that is built by Siwi children using recyclable material. The Center will also host workshops that will teach locals a refinement of their art, propelling their products to national celebration that will provide additional source of income. This idea is inspired from the Tunis Pottery School in Fayoum.

Faris Hassanein

Founder

Ahmed Nadeem

Co-founder

Shahira Kamal

Public relations

Mustafa Khattab

Marketing & Publicity

Mohamed Elabd

Liaison Officer 

Shiraz Elsayees

General Secretary