Apartment building in Solnechnoe, a suburb of Saint Petersburg
The site for this hotel is located in a suburban area northwestward of Saint Petersburg, Russia, in the immediate vicinity of the Gulf of Finland from the south, a regional highway to Finland and a railway from the north. The area holds conservation status and the hotel was designed in accordance with all restrictions in terms of height, footprint and volume of buildings. The site itself contains a grove of birches and pine trees, which are all going to be saved in compliance with forest conservation regulations. These trees actually became a core of the spatial planning of the hotel with four buildings designed around them.
The north-south orientation, along with a well-defined structural grid underlying the main design, allows the hotel to be more responsive to the surroundings and creates a set of closed and open surfaces. Stepwise spaces and surfaces of different texture make up unique facades for each side of the buildings and make the hotel complex look like one dynamic organism from all sides.
Less than a hotel, this project is rather a combination of spaces with a country resort look and a village feel, all organically blended into the leafy environment. On a practical note, the surfaces to the north work as defenders from cold winds and noise from the highway and the railway. The caring curved shape of these elements, a generalized character of many natural shapes, will make the guests feel protected. The sides facing the south are more open and feature terraces, which will let people enjoy the view of the woods and the Gulf of Finland. Copper beams at the top of the terraces were designed to prevent rooms from excessive heat during the summer, as well as to highlight the openness of the buildings towards the south and their connection with the nearby woods.
The main facade materials, raw concrete along with timber tiling panels, correspond with the main idea of the concept: a building appears as a set of horizontal and vertical walls highlighting and saving the surrounding woods. The closer to the courtyard we move, the stronger the wooden volume of the surfaces becomes. Some facade elements are covered with copper tiling, which brings a graphic look to the surfaces and connects the bigger shapes with the smaller details. The curved shells on the northern side are fully covered with copper, and as guests move towards the buildings from the highway or the railway, they will be welcomed by its warm shine among the trees.