Monte Uzulu is a boutique hotel located on the coast in San Agustinillo, a small fishing village in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico. The architecture was designed by Att-e, the interiors by Taller Lu’um and the lighting design by Sombra.

Its name comes from the Zapotec word *gusulú*, which means the beginning. The Zapotec people are indigenous to the region of Oaxaca. They were born from the clouds in bird forms, then after listening to music, their creator gods became moons, stars and suns. We were all the same, the perfect balance between human beings and nature, connected with our origins, with the beginning of a wholeness. This is Monte Uzulu, the experience of being conscious, we are part of nature and we want to honor the land, the water, the sun, the night, the skies. Our objective for this project is to become invisibles, to look from within, knowing that our actions have an impact in the world, to connect with the cosmos, with ourselves.

The lighting design was inspired primarily in the strong nocturnal energy that exists in San Agustinillo, respecting the night skies, respecting darkness and all the nocturnal ecosystems that inhabit the jungle. The lights are warm, warm as the sunsets one sees on the pacific coast, generating tranquility. Light is added only where needed, seeking to nuance the amount of light and shadow, oscillating between the poetic and the practical. Similarly, the decorative luminaires were designed together with Taller Lu’um and local artisans using native materials such as wood and *popotillo* (straw). In certain rooms subtle shadows occur next to the beds, generating textures and patterns that remind us to the ocean waves. The simplicity of the lighting design is what creates its beauty, it is truly interconnected with the space, the architecture and the locality.

Likewise, the lighting design is rooted with the coastal elements of the region, always honoring the earth, and the night skies that unfortunately due to light pollution and over illuminated spaces, the stars are disappearing.
Nevertheless, in Monte Uzulu it is possible to observe the cosmos, this action generates a sense of awe, and awe makes humans more generous and empathic, because this feeling causes a sense of a small self and wholeness with the universe.

Monte Uzulu is a space that must be lived and felt, both by day and night.


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