Building a retail complex of distinct character on a unique island resort set on a singular river poses special challenges. Two possible solutions: One, to reprise a medieval island city not unlike Ile de la Cite in Paris; and at the other extreme, to recast the tropical villages of Maldives or Bali. These concepts engendered Medieval Island, Island Resort, and Tropical Paradise, approaches based on time-tested principles of good planning, blending humanist habitation with a vibrant retail environment. Thorough retail and city planning delivered a strategy that has proven very successful in the past. When the architecture finally emerges on stage, that robust strategy will be fulfilled. The newly coined design could be called “retail tropical modernism”—an architecture of both place and pleasure — a contemporary reinterpretation of vernacular traditions, taking the best of both worlds.