A desert ghost town in Second Life

Kolmannskuppe, April 2020 – click any image for full size

On April 10th, 2020, Serene Footman opened his latest limited-time region build to once again transport us to one of the most unusual places to be found on Earth.

I tend to wax lyrical over Serene’s designs, and for three good reasons: the first is they are invariably elegant in design and statement, packed with details that may be both obvious and subtle, whilst also incorporating Serene’s own recognisable individuality of touch that has marked all of his designs. The second is that they demonstrate that while Second Life sets the imagination free and can become the home of the strange, the out-of-the ordinary and the unique – so too can the physical world around us, which is every bit as richly diverse as anything to be found in-world; the difference is, Second Life offers the means for to visit such places where otherwise they might forever be out of out reach save for photographs and videos seen in publications and on-line.

The third reason is that his builds are always educational, both in terms of what can be achieved in Second Life with care and forethought in design and because as soon as I visit one of his designs, I’m reaching for the encyclopaedia and calling up my search engine to find out as much as I can about the locations he picks, so I might broaden my own knowledge.

Kolmannskuppe, April 2020

And so it is with Kolmannskuppe – The Ghost Town of Namib Desert, his build for April 2020, which brings to SL the long-deserted mining town of Kolmannskuppe or (to give its name in Afrikaans) Kolmanskop located on the inter-coastal erg of the southernmost reaches of the massive Namib desert in modern-day Namibia, but was at the time of the town’s founding, German South West Africa.

Named for a nearby kopje, or hillock, which had in turned been dubbed Kolmannskuppe “Kolman’s Head” after the wagon driver who had been forced to abandon his wagon there after a particularly violent sand storm in 1905, the town came to prominence as one of the first areas along the Namib coast to experience a diamond rush.

Three years later, a railway was being built between the territory’s major harbour town of Lüderitz on the coast and the inland town of Aus. The man in charge of the work was German-born August Stauch, who has moved to the territory in the hope of alleviating his asthma. An amateur mineralogist in his spare time, Stauch became fascinated the tales surrounding the territory’s founder, Franz Adolf Eduard Lüderitz (after whom the the harbour town was named) and his belief the region contained diamonds just waiting to be found.

Kolmannskuppe, April 2020

So firm was his belief Lüderitz had been correct, Stauch obtained a prospecting licence and told his railway workers to bring him any unusually shiny stones they might turn over whilst digging to lay the train line’s foundations, and in April 1908, one of his aides, Zacharias Lewala – who had previously worked at the Kimberley diamond mines in South Africa – did just that. Systematically searching the area Lewala had been scouting, Stauch found more of the stones and took them to Lüderitz, where his friend and mining engineer Sönke Nissen confirmed they were diamonds.

Using Stauch’s prospecting licence, the two men secured a 75-acre claim at Kolmannskuppe. At first they tried to keep the mine and their growing wealth secret, but news inevitably spread, sparking a diamond rush into the area, and Kolmannskuppe  grew to become an extremely wealthy settlement, boasting all the amenities of a modern town: a rail link to Lüderitz (itself massively enriched by the flow of diamonds from Kolmannskuppe  and further deposits found to the north), its own tram service, a host of civic facilities and utility services form a hospital (with the southern hemisphere’s first x-ray machine) through a theatre, ballroom and casino to its own power station and ice-making factory.

Kolmannskuppe, April 2020

The town reached its peak in the years immediately before and after the first world war. However, the discovery of a huge deposits of diamonds 270 km to the south around the mouth of the Orange River that did not require complex mining, resulted in many from Kolmannskuppe simply up and moving south, leaving their homes and possessions to the sands of the desert. These moves marked the start of 3-decade decline for Kolmannskuppe, the last inhabitants leaving the town to the shifting desert sands in 1956.

More recently, Kolmannskuppe has become a tourist attraction – if one that is corporately managed, De Beers and the Namibian government jointly funding it. This remaining buildings sit alongside a dusty road, dunes of tufted sand wrapping themselves around wooden, sun-bleached walls that are so leached of moisture they don’t so much fall down as crumble away. It’s a place that is beloved of photographers, artists and film-makers for its sense of desolation and nature’s reclamation of man’s fragile foot-hold in this harsh desert environment. As Serene notes in his own informative blog post on the setting, it is in some ways a contrived and artificial location, centred upon the hulking form of the former casino (and now the nexus for tourists) – but it is undeniably photogenic and captivating.

Kolmannskuppe as it is today. Via Wikipedia

It is in this form that Serene captures the town, and does so quite magnificently, from the high shoulders and roof of the former casino through to the crumbling skeletons of houses and the bare bones of former utilities. While some of the house styles may be more esoteric than those of the actual town, he has perfectly captured and embodies the spirit of Kolmannskuppe, right down to the touches of corporate artificiality, such as the misplaced baths.

As the same time, he has added his own touches, notably in the form of multiple places where visitors can sit and immerse themselves in the setting, watching the coming and going of others, the entire region surrounded by high dunes that mirror the Namib’s reputation for sand dunes that can reach heights of up to 300m. Rounded-out by the presence of oryx gazella, Kolmannskuppe – The Ghost Town of Namib Desert is yet another remarkable location presented by one of Second Life’s foremost region designers.

Kolmannskuppe, April 2020

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Ubay Island: racing the King Tide in Second Life

Ubay Island, March 2020 – click any image for full size

In October 2013, a 7.2-magnitude earthquake struck the province of Bohol, Philippines, inducing about 1m land subsidence to some of its small island communities. Now, the islands of Batasan, Pangapasan, Ubay and Bilangbilangan of the Municipality of Tubigon experience partial or complete flooding even during normal spring tides. Coming face-to-face with a hundred years’ worth of sea level rise, the island communities show that they are far more resilient than we think.

This is the introduction to Racing the King Tide, a film and website looking at the impact of the 2013 Philippines earthquake that was centred on the island district of Bohol had on the people and islands close to its epicentre. One of these islands – perhaps the most deeply affect of them all – is tiny Ubay, which is the central inspiration for Serene Footman’s latest region design in Second Life, and which opened to the public on March 3rd.

Called, appropriately enough, Ubay Island, the setting offers a marvellous reproduction of little Ubay – which is less than 4 acres in size – perhaps as seen in the the time period immediately after the earthquake had struck the region. As is always his way, Serene has provided a comprehensive blog post to accompany the build, and I cannot recommend enough that it should be read alongside any visit to Ubay in-world, as it really puts the build into perspective. Through his writing, Serene provides not only a lens through which to view the build, but also wider context on on the earthquake, its impact on the peoples of Ubay Batasan, Pangapasan and Bilangbilangan.

Ubay Island, March 2020

The build presents Ubay as it appears for around 130-140 days a year: flooded to a typical depth of some 45cm (1.5 ft) – although tidal ranges can make the actual waters deeper. The flooding is a combined result of both rising sea level de to climate change – and which ultimately threaten Ubay’s future – and the fact that the 2013 ‘quake saw a mean decrease in elevation of a metre (3ft) within the area where Ubay is located (an collapse that also gave rise to The Great Wall of Bohol on Bohol island itself), leaving the island’s maximum elevation when dry at just 2.32 m (7.2 ft) above the surrounding sea level.

Under the default windlight the water is a dirty, brackish grey / brown – a reminder, perhaps that flood waters can carry with them dirt, mud, animal manure and human wastes which can be hazardous to health – with wooden walk ways partially winding through the village streets in an effort to keep passing feet dry. In this, the setting has the feel of depicting Ubay not long after the earthquake struck; more recently, much has been done (starting with an imitative by the islanders themselves before they received external support), to raise the village footpaths above the average level of the flood waters.

Ubay,Island, March 2020

The landing point sits within the local school playground, a location which is both touching and somewhat ironic. Touching, as Serene has captured the graffiti marking one of the playground walls that reminds us of the lives the adults and children of the island face: This Is Where We Play. The irony is that on the actual island of Ubay, the playground was supposed to be the evacuation assembly point should the island be at risk of flooding – but in 2013, it was one of the first places to be submerged.

You might think that given the state of the island, it would have been long deserted – and you’d be wrong. Despite the earthquake, despite the continued and very real threat of rising sea levels as a result of climate change, the people of Ubay steadfastly hold on to their homes and way of life, up to and including the annual threat of typhoons wiping the village off the face of the planet.

Ubay Island, March 2020 (as it might appear under a brighter sky and the invasion of sea water)

This might sound like a case of local hubris, but it’s not. With some 74% of the population living below the national poverty line even before the 2013 earthquake, there is simply nowhere else in the Philippines where the peoples of Ubay and its neighbours can survive. This was proven in the period following the 2013 ‘quake when the 300-ish Ubay islanders were made to evacuate to the “mainland”, and almost all of them quietly moved back to island as it was the only place they could survive as fisher folk. In doing so, they have given Ubay its ray of hope.

Serene has tried to capture this sense of life as well: fishing boats lie in the waters around the village, chairs are set out on raised “porches”, ribbons festoon some of the village paths, clothes are set out to dry in the sun and breeze even as the waters pass under the lines on which they are hung, and so on. Someone has even enterprisingly set-up a stage for a music concert while boat repair yards are still in business. True, one or two liberties may have been taken (for example, the  Racing the Tide website, for example, infers that the half-submerged house that’s included in the build may be at Bilangbilangan Island rather than Ubay), but none of this spoils the setting in any way – rather, they enhance it.

Set as it is under a heavy sky, with its muddied waters and the ruins of buildings pulled down by the earthquake, and its shanty-like corrugated metal walls and roof tops, you might think that Ubay is a bit of a dismal place in SL to visit, but this simply isn’t so. Serene offers something that is once again captivating, poignant and with a depth of story behind it that should not be missed.

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A return to Khodovarikha’s desolate beauty in Second Life

Khodovarikha, February 2020

In late 2017, Serene Footman, bringer of some of the more captivating and unusual locations from around the globe, opened Khodovarikha, a Homeland region  design inspired by a spit of land extending into the shallow waters of the Pechora Sea, now regarded as the south-eastern extent of what we call the Barents Sea off of Russia’s north coast, although it bore its name as far back as when the Barents was simply called the Murmanskoye Morye  (“Sea of Murmansk”).

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It’s a desolate, lonely place, marked by the wood-framed octagon of a lighthouse that once marked the Yugorsky Strait linking the Pechora and Kara Seas, once an important trade route and, during World War 2, the route taken by allied convoys bringing supplies and materiel to aid Stalin and his armies. Today, Khodovarikha is a largely forgotten place, most of its building falling into decline, a single, lonely weather station the only working centre. Its a place so remote, it isn’t even connected by road or rail to the rest of Russia.

Khodovarikha, February 2020

I mention this because Serene’s interpretation of Khodovarikha is once again open in Second Life for a limited period, and brings with it a new blog post on the location and his inspiration for creating it. However, this is not a mere re-establishing of a past build; rather, Serene has taken the spirit of his original build, together with some of the notable elements – the lighthouse, the weather station, etc., – to offer a new interpretation of Khodovarikha and the life of its one permanent resident – Vyacheslav Korotki, or Slava as he is known.

As Serene notes in his 2017 blog post on the original build, it was Slava’s story that first drew him to wanting to represent Khodovarikha in Second Life. Now, in this iteration of the build, we see more of that life brought into focus: the distinctive lighthouse no longer functional (as it was in the original build), reflecting the fact its namesake ceased operations in 1996. Similarly, the damaged side panels apparent in the model and perhaps seen as storm or other damage with the original build, are now explained by Serene as being the result of Slava’s assaults on the wooden frame in order to provide him with the warmth of firewood during the harsh winters. A zipline also now extends down from the lighthouse, a tribute, Serene informs us, to the sports hall that once stood at the base of the structure.

Khodovarikha, February 2020

Originally set within the cold harshness of winter, the region is this time offered in the summer months. This iteration brings new life to Khodovarikha: birds are very much in evidence, while with a few tweaks with the viewer’s windlight settings, it’s possible to render the setting under bluer skies as might be seen in the summer months, and which may well life Slava’s mood and thoughts. Certainly, a drop of sunshine adds warmth and light to Slava’s lonely, red-planked home.

The discovery of more photographs of the area have allows Serene to commission structures reflecting those to be seen in Khodovarikha – such as the brick-built but dilapidated bungalow sitting in the lee of the great lighthouse. This is reproduced within the region courtesy of Impossibleisnotfrench, who also produced the bothy in Serene’s last region design (see: Serene Footman’s Scottish vision in Second Life, December 2019).

Khodovarikha, February 2020

As Serene notes, Khodovarikha does not have any natural beauty to it what would make it a subject for postcards, but in its deteriorating, lonely position, now all but bereft of human presence save for one man and the annual visits of the Mikhail Somov, it has a desolate, captivating beauty of its own. In bringing his vision of the location back to Second Life, Serene is allowing us to experience that isolated, decrepit beauty for ourselves, making a visit to the region – and a reading of both of Serene’s blog posts on it – an absolute must of Second Life travellers and explorers.

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North Brother Island, “the last unknown place”, in Second Life

North Brother Island; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrNorth Brother Island, June 2019 – click and image for full size

Update: in keeping with Serene and Jade’s approach to offering their region builds for approximately a month before moving to a new location and project, North Brother Island has closed, and SLurls therefore removed from this article.

For their July 2019 region design, Serene Footman and Jade Koltai bring us their vision for what photographer Christopher Payne called The Last Unknown Place in New York City – North Brother Island; and like all of their builds, it is a true wonder to behold and explore.

North Brother Island is one of two small islands located on New York’s East River, its slightly smaller companion now being known as South Brother Island. Both were claimed in 1614 by the Dutch West India Company and originally called De Gesellen (“the companions”), which eventually became transposed to “the Brothers”. Both island have a fascinating history, with that of North Brother perhaps being the more complex – and the more tragic.

North Brother Island; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrNorth Brother Island, June 2019

In 1904, it was the final resting place of the General Slocum, a massive side-wheel paddle steamer built in the 1890s, she caught fire whilst carrying 1,342 passengers and through a combination of neglect by the owners, foolhardiness by the Captain (he failed to use opportunities to either make a safe landing or run the ship aground before the fire overwhelmed the vessel), 1,021 of those souls perished either aboard the ship or as a result of drowning in the East River – many of their bodies washing up on North Brother Island in addition to as the vessel running aground there.

In addition, Serene goes on to note the island was the home to:

Riverside Hospital, which moved here from Roosevelt Island in 1885 … Following World War II North Brother Island was inhabited by war veterans during the nationwide housing shortage, before being abandoned again in the early 1950s. It was then was used as the site of a treatment centre for adolescent drug addicts, but the centre closed amidst controversy – it was said that heroin addicts were held against their will and locked in rooms until ‘clean’ – in the 1960s.

– Serene Footman, writing about North Brother Island

North Brother Island; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrNorth Brother Island, June 2019

Riverside Hospital, originally founded in the 1850s, was designed to isolate and treat victims of smallpox, with its mission expanding to cover other diseases requiring quarantine. In this role – as Serene also notes – it took in those stricken with typhoid, including “Typhoid Mary”, Mary Mallon. An Irish-American cook, she was the first person in the United States identified as an asymptomatic carrier of the pathogen associated with typhoid fever. It is believed she infected between 47 and 51 people during her career as a cook, and was twice forcibly isolated by public health authorities, the second time finally passing away in Riverside Hospital in 1938, after a total of nearly three decades in isolation.

In 1943, a large tuberculosis pavilion was constructed on the island but was never used for that purpose, already being obsolete by the time it opened. Instead, it was used as a dormitory by a number of New York City’s colleges, students transported to and from the island via the East 134th Street Ferry Terminal.

North Brother Island; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrNorth Brother Island, June 2019

In the late 1950s  / early 1960s, the same ferries were used to transport adolescents to the island to be “treated” for drug abuse. The idea had been to provide care for up to 100 males and 50 females away from jails where drugs could still be obtained, with stays at the pavilion being for up to six months. But the hospital gained a reputation for keeping adolescent addicts against their will – it merely required their parents to place them there, with or without the agreement of the courts. Once there, the young people were frequently locked away and left to go cold turkey as a means to break their addiction.

The hospital finally closed in the 1960s, and North Brother Island abandoned, its many building and facilities – including the ferry wharves and giant gantry crane, many of the hospital buildings and facilities, left to rot. However, many of them have now been captured in this interpretation of the island by Serene and Jade.

For our reconstruction of North Brother Island, we have relied on maps which contain details of where specific buildings – the hospital itself, staff quarters, the physician’s house, the morgue, tennis courts, and so on – were located. (For reference, we have labelled and dated the island’s buildings in-world.)

– Serene Footman, writing about North Brother Island

North Brother Island; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrNorth Brother Island, June 2019

In addition they have called upon the resources of Christopher Payne’s catalogue of photos of the island: North Brother Island The Last Unknown Place in New York City. The result of five years of being allowed to visit the island  – today both North and South Brother islands are designated wildlife sanctuaries, and so protected (North Island is additionally regarded as being too dangerous for the public given the state of its buildings) – Payne carefully constructed a visual history of the island. This, together with their own extensive research, have allowed Jade and Serene have produced a region that powerfully captures North Island as it stands today, its past history, and the pathos and pain of that history.

The latter is particularly well captured in the small details to be found throughout the region. Take, for example, the bed frame converted to a seat and that sits on a little dock. A suitcase  sits behind it, while a short distance away, a little motor boat sits on the water; the entire scene brings to mind the longing of the young people held on the island to return home.

North Brother Island; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrNorth Brother Island, June 2019

To say North Brother Island is visually stunning is to do it a disservice. As with all of Serene and Jade’s builds, it must be seen to be appreciated and understood – and there are plenty of places within it that allow visitors to contemplate on the history of the island – or whatever else might be on their minds.

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The Isle of May in Second Life

Isle of May; Inara Pey, March 2018, on FlickrIsle of May – click any image for full size

Update, November 26: Isle of May has re-opened for winter 2018 – read here for more.

Update, July 6th: Isle of May has “closed for now”. SLurl links have therefore been removed from this article.

Isle of May, located on the north side of the outer Firth of Forth, is a tiny island – less than 2 kilometres long and under half a kilometre wide – sitting 8 km off the Scottish coast. A rugged finger-like uplift of basalt, it has no permanent human residents today but is managed by Scottish Natural Heritage as a National Nature Reserve, and home to over 285 bird species, including puffins, kittiwake, guillemots, razorbills, shags and fulmars, and from October through Easter, is a home for seal pups.

It is also now the inspiration for a new region design in Second Life. Called, appropriately enough, Isle of May. Designed by Jade Koltai and her partner, Serene Footman (of FurillenKhodovarikha and La Digue du Braek fame), the region is a beautifully conceived and executed design.

Isle of May; Inara Pey, March 2018, on FlickrIsle of May

Compressing something even as small as Isle of May into Second Life isn’t easy, but within this design, Jade and Footman have captured the essence of the island perfectly. As rugged as the original, it is similarly cut by deep gorges, and offers a hint of antiquity – the original had settlements dating back to the Bronze Age, and was the site of one of the earliest Christian churches in Scotland, was a site of pilgrimage and, in medieval times, home to a Benedictine community – through the ruins located on the north-western headland.

Some of the island’s famous landmarks are imaginatively represented. Its two lighthouses and unmistakeable fog horn, for example, have been combined into a single lighthouse and buildings on the north-eastern headland of the region (check the map of the island inside the building alongside the lighthouse). A little artistic license is also taken with the geography; this Isle of May is cut into three islands linked by wooden bridges. However, while the Rona peninsula of the original is almost separate from the rest, the physical Isle of May is but a single rocky mass.

Isle of May; Inara Pey, March 2018, on FlickrIsle of May

This setting also has a lot of foliage in the form of trees and bushes than the original boasts (it being largely grassland atop its basalt rock plateaus). But the trees and bushes help to give the couple’s vision more of a unique look and feel – although at times, the foliage can make several of the paths winding down the cliffs a little hard to find when searching at avatar eye-level.

These paths offer multiple routes down to the islands’ rough coast. Some lead to shale and rock “beaches” and coves, others form paths down to shoreline buildings – here a cottage, there an old working hut on a pier, now converted into a cosy snug …

Isle of May; Inara Pey, March 2018, on FlickrIsle of May

Jade and Serene note that while the original has no permanent human residents, they imaged their Isle of May to be home to a small community of artists and photographers – hence the large house dominating the main plateau, and the aforementioned cottage and converted pier hut. And it works perfectly.

Also well represented is the island’s avian communities are richly and diversely represented, from garden birds through to cormorants, guillemots and more, while the more usual seal pup population found on the island in winter months has been imaginatively substituted by the presence of sea otters, while dolphin and orca might be found off-shore, together with a passing trawler.

Isle of May; Inara Pey, March 2018, on FlickrIsle of May

“What we were searching for is something holistic and organic,” Serene and Jade note of the build. “For visitors, an immersive experience of being ‘in nature’ that is powerful and evocative.” With its natural look and feel, wrapped in a delightful sound scape and suited to a wide range of windlight settings, it is absolutely clear that they’ve succeeded.

With thanks to Shakespeare from dropping me the LM!

 

Khodovarikha’s lonely beauty in Second Life

Khodovarikha; Inara Pey, October 2017, on Flickr Khodovarikha – click any image for full size

Serene Footman, the man behind Furillen, (see here, here and here for more) and La Digue du Braek (see here) opened a further region in August 2017. Once again it is an atmospheric setting based on a location in the physical world.

Khodovarikha, a Homestead region, is modelled after the spit of land going by the same name which projects eastwards into the Pechora Sea off the coast of north-west Russia. As you might expect from this description, it is a lonely and desolate place – and such places hold an appeal with Serene. In 2015, the area was the focus of a Russian Television documentary, Arctic Limbo, and this appears to have served as Serene’s inspiration in designing the region.

Khodovarikha; Inara Pey, October 2017, on Flickr Khodovarikha

Serene’s vision of Khodovarikha captures the desolate isolation of the area perfectly – and provides a magnificent  reproduction of its most notable landmark: the great wooden lighthouse. This ceased operation in 1996, but played an important role in guiding the convoys bringing supplies and munitions to Russia during World War Two. Within Serene’s setting, the lighthouse is both operational and truly dominates the landscape, but otherwise closely resembles the original right down to a hole in the tower’s base.

The region itself is split into two, with a slender finger running west-to-east to the north, a narrow channel of water separating it from the larger land mass to the south, where the lighthouse resides. The landing point is towards the western end of the northern finger of land, and the easiest route around the island is clockwise, following the rough wooden board walk pointing east from the landing point. This leads visitors over sand and past ageing buildings to where a large wooden warehouse-like structure topped by the dome of a Doppler radar system faces the lighthouse across the neck of water, an old wooden bridge linking the two.

Khodovarikha; Inara Pey, October 2017, on Flickr Khodovarikha

The loneliness of the island is encapsulate in the spread of the building and their generally dilapidated state. The detritus of human living – oil barrels scattered across the sand, sanding in untidy groups or part-buried, sacks of rubbish left to freeze outdoors, and the spoils of collapsed walls and bonfires – all add to the sense of isolation. This is not a place where appearance and neatness matter.

There is also a wealth of detail to be found here that further adds to the remoteness of the setting, particularly inside several of the buildings, where care has been taken to reflect the lonely lifestyle of Khodovarikha’s one full-time inhabitant, Slava, and the work involved in keeping things running – if that’s the right term. The air of untidiness around some of these work spaces perhaps offers a subtle suggestion of  Slava’s one-time assistant, Ustin, moving listlessly around the scattered buildings, carrying out assigned tasks during his year-long stay, missing his family and home.

Khodovarikha; Inara Pey, October 2017, on Flickr Khodovarikha

There is a gentle beauty always present in Serene’s builds, and this is certainly the case here. The overcast sky fading to a distant horizon haze, softens the setting and adds to the mystery. Looking out towards that distant horizon, it’s not too difficult to imagine the research vessel  Mikhail Somov looming out of the mists on its annual visit to deliver supplies to Slava. Or, for the more imaginative mind, to see the faint, distant shadows of the wartime convoys slipping past in the distance, ghostly shadows within the grey-blue haze.

Khodovarikha is a magnificent build, reflecting its physical world namesake almost perfectly. It is hauntingly beautiful rendering of desolation and loneliness, richly echoing the RT documentary. It is a perfect destination for those who – like Slava – wish to escape the world (at least for a while). And for those who do, there are plenty of opportunities not just for exploration, but for sitting and pondering or talking, indoors and out – some of which are quite imaginatively placed for the keen-eyed.

Khodovarikha; Inara Pey, October 2017, on Flickr Khodovarikha

This is a place most definitely deserving of a visit, and you can find out more on the background of the build and on Khodovarikha in general by reading Serene’s own blog post on his inspiration in designing the region, which delves into things like the meaning behind the big building with its striped radar dome and the inclusion of a half-finished Rawin Dome on the south side of the island, all of which adds further depth and context to the build.

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