How biophilic design and Casambi-controlled lighting can transform your space

Casambi lighting controls designer, Leticia Mori, explores the benefits of biophilic design and Casambi’s role in implementing it. 

Currently, architecture and design are increasingly oriented towards the environment – whether by reducing the environmental impact of buildings through the use of more sustainable materials and more efficient energy systems, or by enhancing well-being and productivity through a closer connection with nature. The growing number of buildings with green certifications and eco-friendly decorations easily confirms this trend. Take the Bullitt Center in Seattle, once dubbed the “greenest commercial building in the world”, it has inspired many green projects since. 

This approach is not new, particularly concerning the innate human tendency to seek connections with nature, as it is rooted in human evolution. We evolved in a bio-centric world, not one engineered by humans and confined indoors as it may seem currently. As far back as the 6th century BCE, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, exemplified the integration of nature into urban environments with their terraces of greenery in the arid climate of Mesopotamia. Glorious. 

Today, biophilic design is an approach to architecture and interior design that aims to forge a stronger connection between people and nature. It incorporates natural elements, materials, and patterns into the built environment, promoting well-being, reducing stress, and enhancing the overall human experience. As the renowned architect and designer Bill Browning, a pioneer in the field of biophilic design, rightfully said;  

“Biophilic design is not just a feel-good, ‘add some plants’ kind of idea. It’s a fundamental part of our evolutionary inheritance. By incorporating natural elements into our built environment, we can create spaces that are not only more beautiful but also enhance our well-being and productivity.” 


Biophilic design offers a range of benefits, not only promoting well-being but also positively impacting the environmental and property value. Here are some key benefits associated with biophilic design: 

Positive impact on physical health 

Physical outcomes include lower blood pressure, improved physical fitness, reduced illness symptoms, and overall enhanced health. Incorporating natural light can also lead to better sleep patterns and the regulation of circadian rhythms. In fact, research by the Lighting Research Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute found that workers in environments with ample natural light reported better sleep patterns and fewer issues with sleep disturbances, leading to improved attention span. 

Improved mental health 

Biophilic design helps create environments that evoke a sense of calm, reducing stress levels and anxiety, and increasing mood and satisfaction. It is also linked to enhanced creativity and problem-solving skills.  

Beneficial behavioral changes 

Positive behavioral change includes improved attention, concentration, and cognitive function. Studies have suggested that incorporating biophilic elements into workspaces can boost productivity and creativity, as employees tend to be more focused, alert, and satisfied with their work. It also enhances social interaction and collaboration.  

Environmental sustainability 

Many biophilic design principles align with sustainable practices, such as the use of natural materials, energy-efficient design, and a focus on local ecosystems. This contributes to reducing energy consumption, water usage, and waste production. Take the Bosco Verticale in Milan, Italy. These residential towers are covered with trees and plants, promoting local biodiversity and providing natural insulation to reduce energy consumption for heating and cooling, while using sustainable building materials and an integrated irrigation system that filters greywater to maintain the vegetation. 

Elevated property value 

Integrating biophilic design elements can enhance a property’s appeal, making it more attractive for potential buyers and renters. Its benefits can also be felt in the retail world. A study from the University of Washington reported that consumers were willing to pay 12% more for goods and services in shopping areas that had tree cover and other natural features. 

How Casambi can help 

An important element in biophilic design is lighting, natural light as well as permanent lighting systems that replicate the natural solar cycle to support circadian rhythms. 

Casambi is a wireless lighting control system that provides the ability to wirelessly link devices together enabling the creation of customizable smart lighting networks that are easily configured and controlled using the Casambi App, a feature-rich application that enables programming of circadian profiles and daylighting, among many other functionalities. 

Casambi integration has played a pivotal role in numerous sustainable projects, notably BDP’s Manchester Studio, lauded as one of the UK city’s smartest buildings. Built in 2009, the studio set new energy efficiency benchmarks with its innovative design, earning prestigious accolades like the RIBA for its low-carbon footprint and sustainable features. BDP adopted a comprehensive sustainability strategy, leveraging the building’s orientation to optimize microclimates and employing materials like concrete with GGBS for reduced CO2 emissions. Openable windows, greywater recycling, and flexible office layouts further exemplify their eco-conscious approach, integrating biophilic elements to foster a deeper connection with nature. The Manchester Studio, achieving an Excellent BREEAM rating, also boasts Casambi controls for efficient, high-quality lighting that complements the building’s ethos. 

Casambi can contribute to achieving a biophilic design in several ways: 

Natural lighting integration 

Using Casambi-enabled daylight sensors and the daylight controls options available in the App, it is easy to maintain a well-balanced light scheme combining daylight and artificial light throughout the day. 

Visual connection with outdoors 

Keeping a visual connection with the outdoors is essential in balancing the body clock of people in buildings. Casambi can be used to control motorized blinds or roller shutters according to time or the amount of available daylight. When used with a light sensor, the blind actuators from the Casambi Ecosystem can provide automatic daylight glare control, thus improving the visual conditions indoors. 

Circadian lighting 

It is possible to set personalized Circadian profiles in the Casambi App for tuneable white lighting based on the time of day to remain in sync with the occupants’ body clock. 

Individual control and personalized lighting 

Casambi allows individual control of lighting fixtures, enabling users to personalize their lighting preferences. This level of control can empower individuals to create lighting scenarios that resonate with their connection to nature, whether it’s through mimicking natural light or creating specific ambient settings (adjusting light intensity, color temperature or up/down distribution). 

Energy Efficiency and Sustainability 

Casambi contributes to energy efficiency by optimizing lighting based on occupancy, daylight harvesting, smart-time scheduling, and user preferences. Any of these strategies can be easily adopted at any point during the lifetime of an installation thanks to the Casambi ecosystem and software. 

Air quality control  

Casambi’s capabilities extend beyond illumination to also improve indoor air quality. A Casambi Ready ecosystem product, the Vairus Air Purifier, seamlessly integrates with Casambi’s lighting solution, discreetly purifying a space while doubling as a stylish lamp. With smart internal design and control via the Casambi app, it offers real-time air quality monitoring and remote control. 

Case study 

Casambi Project – John Hardy Boutique 

The John Hardy Boutique in Mambal, Bali illustrates the seamless fusion of lighting design and biophilic principles, resulting in a revitalized space that captivates visitors. In this revamp, Casambi’s wireless lighting control system played a pivotal role in enhancing the boutique’s ambiance, emphasizing sustainability, and showcasing the natural beauty of its bamboo structure and exquisite jewelry. 

Casambi’s system was chosen for its seamless integration into the bamboo structure, eliminating complex wiring. The installation strategically used three Casambi nodes for maximum sustainability and energy efficiency. These nodes control indirect lighting, direct lighting, and a user-friendly remote-control interface, ensuring easy control of lighting scenes. 

To ensure that customers have the most welcoming experience possible, the boutique uses both daytime and evening lighting scenes. During the day, the lighting is dimmed to create an intriguing balance between sunlight and the high-lumen 4000K lighting in the jewelry showcases. At night, a different lighting scene is used to increase the overall brightness and create a warm and inviting ambiance. This balances out the high-contrast 4000K lighting in the jewelry showcases, and 3000K lighting is used to highlight the bamboo structures, which creates a stunning visual effect. 

The successful integration of Casambi’s lighting control system at John Hardy Boutique demonstrates its ability to align with biophilic design principles, offering a sustainable, visually stunning, and efficient solution for lighting in harmony with nature. For all this, the John Hardy Boutique received the 2023 Casambi Project of the Year Award

Casambi Ready Product – Linfa Desk Light  

Crowned the 2024 Casambi Product of the Year, Linfa Desk Light by Robonica Srl is a clever fusion of technology and nature. This innovative office solution integrates LED lights and water pumps, prioritizing human well-being and sustainable indoor plant cultivation. Linfa boasts dual-tunable white LED lights and a hydroponic irrigation system, seamlessly integrated with Casambi technology, providing automated controls for optimal lighting conditions. 

If you’d like to learn more about how Casambi can support biophilic design in your next project, get in touch!