The Industrial-Looking Sauna In The Port City Of Goteborg

Seen from the distance, the uncanny construction seems to be a metallic monster standing on frail wooden legs, bents under its massive weight. The creature is even scarier as it is located in the port of the Goteborg, Sweden’s second largest city, and the reflections in the water enhance this fright feeling. In reality, the steel structure is a public sauna built by an architecture company based in Berlin at the end of a wooden bridge.

The industrial-looking sauna in Goteborg

The industrial-looking sauna – the “monster” of Goteborg

The construction features a mixture of construction materials, such as rough-and-ready exterior of corrugated steel, while the interior, more welcoming, is lined with thin larch strips, and a shower room surrounded by walls made up of glass bottles. The building forms part of a wider regeneration of the Frihamnen port, which is being transformed into a public park ahead of the city’s 400th anniversary in 2021, according to the design website

The architects say they aimed that the industrial looking sauna to bring together all sort of people living in the neighborhood. “Frihamnen is gradually losing its industrial character and is steadily becoming a new, central part of Gothenburg, open to be discovered and adopted by the citizens,” they said. The project also seeks to revive lost traditions, they argue. “Public baths were once an intense place for social gatherings in our cities,” they explained. “They were places not only for relaxation and sport but also for politics, discussion, business deals, eroticism, hedonism and crime. This has been lost in our cities and substituted with the more bleak and leisure-based public swimming pools and spas”, they added.

The industrial-looking sauna in Goteborg

The industrial-looking sauna – fine texture and wine glass set walls

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The architects worked with 24 residents to finish the structure, raised on concrete pillars, and not wood as they may seem from the distance. Weathered steel was chosen for the exterior to give the building an industrial aesthetic, helping it to fit in with its surroundings. Inside, wooden shingles give the walls an interesting and fine looking texture which seem to imitate a flowing motion which moves the visual focus on the windows. The shower room features wine bottle embedded in the walls creating the same lighting effects as glass blocks.

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