- Steigenberger Bremen Hotel interiors \ JOI-Design
- Competition entry: Salford Meadows Bridge \ Alex Daxböck and Chris Precht (penda)
- Competition entry: Salford Meadows Bridge \ STANDARD
- The new Mariinsky Theatre \ Diamond Schmitt Architects with KB ViPS Architects
- Joan D’austria apartment & working area \ External Reference
Posted: 11 Oct 2013 11:06 PM PDT
Infused with subtle tones and sophisticated comfort created by interior architects JOI-Design, the Steigenberger Hotel Bremen has opened its doors. The first-class, four-star superior hotel has been built in an up-and-coming area that is close to the city centre along the banks of Germany's Weser river. Encompassing guestrooms, suites, public areas and back-of-house spaces, JOI-Design's concept for the hotel is drawn from its location in "Weserquartier", a flourishing new district in this port city where tradition meets modernity to become a Hanseatic gateway to the world.
Bremen's harbour provided a rich mix of inspirations for the design team. Numerous ships in a spectrum of sizes and shapes, industrial sea containers, choppy waves, nostalgia from years-gone-by and a wanderlust for exotic adventures all come together to form the port's regional identity. These attributes have been cleverly interpreted in a modern way throughout the interiors.
The building itself also establishes the ambience. Designed by Eike Becker Architekten, the clean, perpendicular lines of the façade's glazing and coloured aluminium panels form a rectangular shape reminiscent of a shipping container. With floor-to-ceiling glazing encircling the entire ground floor, the hotel is flooded with light which can be filtered as necessary with curtains. An adjacent cabaret theatre is also connected directly with the hotel, making it an ideal destination for leisure guests as well as business travellers.
In the lobby, smart minimalist chic is juxtaposed with the gritty textures traditionally found at docklands. Smoothly curved chocolate brown sofas punctuated by bold warm red area rugs sit across from the foyer walls lined with unstained wooden grids and rough textured plaster. To the right is a sleek reception desk, where a polished glass counter rests atop a base crafted from rough hewn split timber.
Mirroring the profile of the desk, a bespoke lighting installation filled with fabric "ribbons" casts a soft glow. Down the corridor, the lifts have been treated to have a "rusted" finish as is common in the salty air climate of the harbour. Between the reception area and Bar Palstek, the hotel's bar and lounge, a blackened glass "room within a room" is a hideaway for the staff offices and the Smokers' Lounge.
Vibrant, yet soft, indirect lighting sets an atmospheric tone; calling to mind the walkways which trail through the dockyards, the meandering pattern of the corridor's backlit coved ceiling draws guests towards the lounge and an entirely glazed passageway which connects to the neighbouring theatre.
The vibe at Bar Palstek is rustic yet refined, with seating heights varying from comfortable bar stools to lower-slung sofas so that a range of activities may be accommodated, either chilling-out over a coffee or cocktail, enjoying a quick breakfast, or catching a sports match on the television.
Massive "duckdalben", the timber mooring posts customarily used for anchoring vessels to a dock, are softly illuminated to draw-out their texture and become the "statement pieces" within the lounge. A palette of deep tone-on-tone browns with splashes of maritime blue and sand lends itself to a relaxing ambience. Contrasting materials are present here as well; for example, the rough wood of the "duckdalben" plays against the fine, smooth grain of the leather seating to create opposing experiences which intrigue the senses. The abstract wave pattern of the carpet directs a subtle flow into the neighbouring dining area.
The discreet elegance of Restaurant Blaufeuer allows the river Weser to be appreciated in all its glory, with the full-height glazing affording views of the 80-seat terrace as well as ships passing by along the waterway. A nuanced tonal range of cream, coffee and copper brings an urbane gentility to the interiors, with subtle allusions to the location again coming into play. For example, the flecked background of the swirled carpet pattern suggests the glints of sunlight reflected on the water and the imprinted motifs on timber divider screens recall the stamped labels of shipping containers. In the morning, guests may dine in a generously sized breakfast buffet area; by evening, the à la carte restaurant becomes more intimate. Illuminated wine racks stretching up to the ceiling break-up the space, while two dining niches within the space create a sense of privacy.
A staircase leads business guests from the reception area up the conference rooms. The design concept of the ground floor has been adopted here as well: shades of mocha and caramel define the furnishings and the more distinct wave patterns of the carpet. Backlit coved ceilings cushion the acoustics and allow the lighting levels to be modified for daytime presentations or evening events.
Again, full-height glazing enables the rooms to be filled with natural light. Meetings of all sizes may be accommodated in either the two boardrooms, each with ten seats; the two small conference rooms which together have a capacity for 40 people; or the 18m2 room that can be divided by partition walls.
While each space is equipped with the latest technology, the boardrooms stand-out with added touches of style, as seen for example with the moulded dados. The expansive, 230m2 spa on the sixth floor includes a gym, an aromatherapy steam bath, both bio and Finnish saunas, and a relaxation room. Indirect lighting creates a calming atmosphere, and in the showers, accentuates the sparkle of the glass mosaic walls. Floor-to-ceiling windows – interspersed by wall panels – are featured in all areas except the steam bath so that guests, whether exercising, relaxing or taking a sauna, feel a connection with the river that soothes the spirit. Intelligent sun shades protect against the UV rays of the direct sunlight. A warm palette of tranquil water-tones imparts the sense of pampering and exclusivity which characterise the Steigenberger spa. The design concept of the corridors and 137 guestrooms, including two accessible rooms, two 42m2 junior suites and two grander, 56m2 and 62m2 suites harmonises with the other areas of the hotel. The "Hanse" (Hanseatic) provenance of the harbour is literally portrayed in each bed's headboard decorated with a delicate embroidered map highlighting Bremen amongst the European Hanseatic communities.
Rich shades of taupe and burnt orange in the cosy fabrics and carpet blend with the sedate tones of the ivory leather chairs and pickled oak desk / television station surrounded by a patinated copper frame. Bathrooms with iridescent verdigris copper wall tiles create a splash of glamour; showers are fitted with both hand-held sprayers and overhead rainshowers to indulge guests in a luxurious bathing experience.
+ All images and drawings courtesy JOI-Design
Posted: 11 Oct 2013 09:36 PM PDT
Chris Precht of penda / Vienna and Alex Daxboeck shared with us their design proposal for a pedestrian bridge in Salford/England. The design reinterprets a traditional bridge typology by mixing it with a visual structure , which creates a strong and unique landmark for the site.
Looking at the bridge from the side, the strucutre appears as a common suspended bridge, but getting closer to its starting points, the bridge opens up its eliptical shape and surrounds the pedestrians walking over to the Meadows.
The ‘O’ – A multifaceted object
The aim of the proposal is to create a landmark for the Salford Meadows by turning its structure of the bridge into a formal element, which will define a strong signature for the site. The design is meant to stand as a monument by balancing the tradition of Salford with the green spaces on the Meadow in an elegant, harmonious and inviting way.
A landmark not defined how people are interacting with the building, but how the building is interacting with the people. Therefore we created an icon for the Meadows which changes its appearance to people throughout the city. People in the South and North of Salford see the bridge as a disc-like object, where else for people in the eastern and western parts the bridge has a very slim and elegant appearance. Approaching from the Crescent / Chapel Street, the bridge looks like a common swing bridge suspended from a pylon. Getting closer, the bridge is opening up and the ellipses turns into a full circle inviting the visitors to the Meadow. People are interacting with the bridge without even the need of crossing it and therefore the O creates a unique experience for people living and visiting Salford and a lasting formal impression of the Meadows.
A continuously truss system is carrying a wooden finishing for a walk path and glazed, semi transparent handrails. With it's DDA compliant gradient of 1/20, both endings are generously widened to invite pedestrians. The walkway merges into a a terraced landscape, which can be used for sunbathing during the day and as an open air theatre at dawn. Hence its slope, the landing point of the bridge provides a great view over the Meadows.
The O – cafe was integrated into the sliced landscape with direct view to the Irwell River and the O.
A profiled welded steel tube, resting on 2 concrete bearings is the main structural element of the bridge. It supports and carries the structure at the same time. Carrying the loads of the bridge to the bearings, the ellipse enables the bridge to span over the Irwell River without having supporting columns within the water. To avoid forcing to many loads to the existing bridge (Chapel Street), one bearing should move to the landscape underneath the street.
During the day, the suspension cables are reflecting the sunlight and the sun’s energy get stored in energy saving LED’s. Therefore the bridge will be glowing during the night transforming the O into a landmark for Salford 24/7.
+ All images and drawings courtesy penda
Posted: 11 Oct 2013 09:37 PM PDT
STANDARD shared with us their design for the Salford Meadows Bridge Competition.
The new Salford Meadows Bridge forms a landmark node near the Crescent / Oldfield Road intersection; it synthesizes the existing improvements and brings the meadow to the city. The bridge is a timber-clad pathway wrapped in a lattice shell tunnel that varies in section, planted at the meadow side with Virginia Creeper. Over time, much of the bridge will become grown over, creating a dramatic transition from the Meadow to the city. Elongating and curving the bridge creates a definable place along the Crescent, and allows the bridge to meet the Meadow without mounding.
The lattice shell is a compelling visual sight from the intersection of Oldfield Road, and the structure literally envelops the passersby as they move along the pavement. The bus stop and Old Pint Pot stair entrance are integrated into the new Meadows bridge entrance. The existing pergola and bus shelter are replaced with a single element – a grand enclosure that invites discovery. The captivating structure is a key element of the Middlewood loop link.
The bridge bends toward the east, bringing the Crescent landing closer to the pedestrian crossing at Oldfield Road, and pulling pedestrian traffic into the Meadow. The distinct paving pattern at the intersection continues to the mouth of the new bridge.
The timber-clad walking path 'floats' within the lattice tunnel, making the walk through the bridge a spatial experience. The voluminous passageway varies in diameter, creating a variety of experience through movement. Vines growing on the shell change color with the seasons, adding another dimension to the walk.
The curved bridge gently slopes from the Crescent to the Meadow at a DDA compliant incline. Elongating and curving the bridge preserves the topography of the Meadow with an at-grade landing. The lower mouth of the bridge peeks through the trees bordering the Meadow, burrow-like, a modest but identifiable presence at the meadow's edge.
+ About Standard:
Standard www.standardarchitecture.com is the Los Angeles based architecture and design partnership of architects Jeffrey Allsbrook and Silvia Kuhle. Building on the partners' international experience in a wide variety of project types, Standard is developing a large body of contemporary and diverse work. Completed projects include residential, retail, educational, cultural, office and manufacturing spaces for a diverse clientele of artists, writers, filmmakers, clothing designers, educators and entrepreneurs in California, New York, Las Vegas, Paris and Antwerp. While Standard continues to grow, its partners insist upon maintaining a practice that is rigorous and attentive. Direct accessibility and sustained dialogue between clients and the firm's partners and architects are viewed as essential to project success.
+ All images and drawings courtesy STANDARD
Posted: 11 Oct 2013 08:53 PM PDT
The Mariinsky Theatre in the heart of St. Petersburg is one of the most famous opera and ballet theatres in the world. Now the historical building from the year 1860 has a new addition – and it is right next door. The curtain went up in May in the new Mariinsky II opera house, which receives its visitors on the other side of the Krukov canal with ample transparency.
Mariinsky II was planned by the Canadian architect's office Diamond Schmitt and German acoustic specialists Müller-BBM. Covering around 79,000 m2, the new opera house has enough room to take a stroll, relax and above all to enjoy the music, because when it comes to technical stage equipment and acoustics, it is one of the most modern buildings in the world. The large panoramic glazing of the formal, simple structure has an inviting effect. It provides not only a look at the happenings – a foyer stretches out behind it with a sus-pended staircase covering several levels, bathed in warm light from amber-coloured onyx – but it also provides a mag-nificent view of the historical Mariinsky Theatre in its classical style. The new and historical theatres are connected together by a pedestrian bridge over the Krukov canal. The auditorium is the heart of the new opera house: With 2000 seats in a classical horseshoe shape, it provides finely tuned acoustics to the listeners. The three balcony levels are unusual. An opera house of this magnitude usually has 5 balcony levels. The use of three balconies instead of five allows for more height between levels and creates better sound dispersion, especially for the rows located farther back.
The very generous use of glass is responsible in part for the pleasant stay in the foyer area of the new Mariinsky Theatre. It allows a great deal of daylight to enter and gives the opera house an open and spacious atmosphere.
This prevents excessive heating of the building and ensures a pleasant climate on the inside.
These days, glass is not only a design element, but it also plays a significant role in modern architecture as a load-bearing element. Thanks to great progress in structural glass construction, the material can now take on numerous stabil-ity-relevant tasks. These possibilities expand the spectrum of possible uses of glass considerably. For example, the pano-ramic façade was built with composite safety glass GEWE-safe® in order to ensure it is safe against falling. This combi-nation of sun protection and safety expands the design flexi-bility of architects considerably, and makes it possible to have large-scale glazing of buildings with high utilisation of daylight. Another 314 m2 of high-tech special glass from SCHOLLGLAS was also installed in numerous window ele-ments as well as for overhead glazing.
The striking panoramic façade of the new Mariinsky Theatre prevails not only from a functional perspective, but it also plays an essential role in the design. The glazing facilitates an unrestricted view of the historical theatre on the opposite side, which in addition is reflected by the outside of the fa-çade resulting in an interrelationship between the old and new.
+ Project facts
+ All images © Pavel Kirillov
Posted: 11 Oct 2013 08:35 PM PDT
Domestic space affects the user very personally and has been discussed extensively over the history of architecture. At present; new lifestyles, new families and more flexible professional routines, have favored the emergence of a unique user profile, one that is complex and involves having a clear understanding on personal needs. This is the case of the inhabitant of this residential and work space: an industrial designer, active art director and one who is very involved in the world of fashion, advertising and performing arts. Our user raised the idea of devoting a warehouse to hold a photo shoot studio, office space, meeting room, space for auditions, castings, fashion shows, and finally, a home. Therefore, creating a space that one would be able to live, work and play in.
Due to this, the project acquired exceptional guidelines. The spirit of all design decisions where based on giving shape and structure to a domestic space, that seeks to be understood mainly, as a space to share. In this sense, the socially outgoing and energetic personality of the user is reflected in the project. The space becomes a kind of inhabited scenery where public and private interact with few apparent limits.
The project exists over two floors, the ground floor and the mezzanine area.
On the entrance level there is a large space for photo shoots to take place in. The ground floor also includes the users work space, which incorporates a meeting area that sits below the living space in the loft.
The mezzanine holds a large livable space in which domestic programs hybridize with common spaces. The kitchen, bathroom and walking wardrobe areas are positioned on the side of the space, creating a service area which can be covered by sliding doors when necessary. The central space is occupied by a group of island-sofas, the larger island-sofa acts as an object that conceals the sliding bed, which slides in and out as the user needs. This space can also be used as a casting and catwalk area.
As a link between the two levels, we integrated a light and large structure made of steel within the project; it serves as a display area for the user´s collection of pop and kitsch objects. OSB white painted panels, metal rods, polycarbonate and black painted bricks are the main materials used in the project. Every element of the design was hand-crafted; no CNC cutting machines were used for making any part of the refurbishment.
The original building, a taxi garage, offers a powerful industrial spirit, which serves as a reference for the project and its future evolution. All in all, the functional program, the reduced budget and the client ambitions leads to low cost systems but to eloquent dramatic effects.
+ About External Reference
Awarded by New Italian Blood as the best Young Italian Architects of 2011, External Reference is an architectural office involved in design and research in the fields of interior design, architecture, and landscape design.
Interested in generating intensity nodes the office is currently involved in research and design in the fields of exhibition spaces and temporary stops as shopping galleries, hotels, accommodations and cultural events.
Based in Barcelona the office establishes work collaborations with international professionals coming from different fields as graphic design and art.
More of a professionals net than an office External Reference Architects is constantly questioning conventional configurations and solutions in order to engage, speculate and innovate.
External Reference Architects notices that there is a big connection between evolvement of architecture projects and business models and believes in sustainable development, balance between architecture, innovative strategy and business improvement.
Directed by Nacho Toribio & Carmelo Zappulla External Reference Architects offers a broad range of design strategies with the aim of pushing the boundaries towards new outcomes.
Looking for the unexpected the office team works on external factors as client needs, budget limits, sustainability as driving forces for the design.
Realized and under construction projects have been developed in Spain, Korea, Italy, UK, Germany, France and Russia.
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