In our long 30-year history, there have been projects that took a considerable amount of engineering, but when they have been completed, they look as effortless as if nature had created them to be there. In 2005, when Aquatic Design & Engineering (ADE) was approached to design a special saltwater lagoon and freshwater pool for a new luxury resort in Willemstad, Curacao, we understood right away the challenges of the project, but wanted to create an amenity that still felt authentic in the Caribbean.
The project was planned to be the Renaissance Curacao Resort & Casino. While it was well situated in the central core of the city within walking distance to both the cruise port and the historic Rif Fort, it was located on a rocky coastline that would have prohibited guests from enjoying a beach experience. The client’s solution was to create one by pumping in the ocean water and bringing in local white sand to create a surrounding beach.
ADE provided the aquatic, mechanical, and structural engineering for the property’s freshwater pool, the wet deck, and the 17,000-square-foot saltwater lagoon. Additionally, ADE designed and engineered the highly sophisticated saltwater pumping system that supplies the water to the lagoon. The saltwater pumping system is supplemented by a modern, high-rate sand filtration system to ensure that only the highest quality water is available for the hotel's lagoon guests.
One of the engineering marvels associated with the saltwater lagoon recirculation system are the ocean saltwater pickup structures. These specially designed suction screens are located in special zones that are elevated above the ocean floor, also approximately five meters below the ocean's surface. These engineered suction zones provide safety for ocean life while providing the optimum in clean, pure water. ADE's team of expert engineers were trusted by the resort owners to provide the design and engineering of this ocean recirculation system, and still today, ADE receives high grades and praise for the exceptional quality of such specialty aquatics.
There’s no doubting that the project is an engineering wonder, yet, because the design features an infinity edge that allows swimmers to look out over the lagoon and straight into the ocean, the actual result feels like a natural beach. With this resort amenity, the Renaissance Curacao Resort provides one of the best views to take in the Caribbean Sea and watch cruise ships entering the harbor.
For more information, visit the Renaissance Curacao Resort project page.