Despite extremely challenging conditions and the large scale construction, this clifftop home fits snugly into the contours of its site.

Some sites present so many challenges that it’s a wonder that anything gets built on them at all. But, paradoxically, the restrictions that a site presents can also pinpoint the design solutions that make building possible.

The clifftop property featured here certainly had major challenges, says Donal Coyne, managing partner at SL+A Bangkok.

“It sits in a bowl shape facing due west out to the Andaman Sea, so it’s very dramatic,” says Coyne. “While that gives you beautiful, controlled views, the slope made it technically very challenging to get down and place a substantial villa on it.”

But that was just the start of the issues to be dealt with.

Local code meant the building had to be positioned at least 30m back from the water, with limits also placed on the height of any building.

The owner also wanted to retain as much of the existing vegetation as possible, including a large tree growing in a prominent position.

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