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Barcelona: Habitat Sky Hotel

Barcelona: Habitat Sky Hotel


A building breaking the “perfect geometric block”

03/03/2006 - Designed by Dominique Perrault, the building presents a base inserted in the horizontal city while the vertical body and the crown are inscribed in the vertical city. This morphology creates a play of volumes, with a “cubic” building acting as a counterpoint behind as well as with the tower, a rectangular parallelepiped cut lengthwise in two, with one of the halfs shifted skywards. This rupture of a “perfect geometric block” creates a movement of form and volume that bestows an urban sense on the insertion of tower in the horizontal city. An arrangement of elementary forms creates the building’s reference signs: a 25 meter high canopy in the style of a loggia points to the Tower; a protuberance in a form of a cantilever creates a “crest” in the vertical city skyline; the cube shifts back to free up a a small square like a terrace that opens onto Calle Lope de Vega. This creates a new point of reference in the more recent part of the Diagonal, with the tower standing out against the sky. The interior design and comfort of the hotel are based on the generous views from each room, like a giant screen overlooking the city landscape. The protecting skin is produced from thick sheets of anodised aluminium-dense, stiff and corrosion-proof. It is a living skin because it “plays” with the light: shimmering on one side, shaded on the other, transparent at the corners of the Tower, opaque and closed along the crestwith a saw-tooth finish on the edge of the terraces. The tower will stand out in the Barcelona skyline like a metal needle; a lively, happy “jewel”, with red, blue and green glass distributed at random along the facade like a giant stained glass window. At night, the tower turns into a “urban la tern, a luminous symbol of the Diagonal.
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