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Architecture | Topics | Magazine 10/2012

Luxurious Conversion: Museum in Hohenschwangau

Located very close to the Royal Castles and right next to Lake Alpsee, is this year's winner of the German Steel Construction Prize. With a combination of modern reserve and ornamental charm, the new connecting building merges old and new with an impressive sensitivity.

Architects: Staab Architekten, Berlin
Location: Alpseestraße 27 a-b, D-87645 Hohenschwangau

Luxurious Conversion: Museum in Hohenschwangau

Photograph: Marcus Ebener

Despite its proximity to the Royal Castles and subjection to several conversion and restructuring efforts, the Hotel Alpenrose was vacant for many years. These days are over now: since a few months, visitors are welcomed to an exhibition about the Bavarian Royal Dynasty there. The almost 100-year-old building ensemble contains an exhibition area of 1,000 square metres.

In the course of the renovation of the listed ensemble, an additional structure for the Museum of the Bavarian Kings was created above the former dining room that connected the hotel to the Jägerhaus (Hunter's Lodge). The room is now used as a museum foyer and serves as a junction between the exhibition areas in the upper storey and the Jägerhaus, as well as the restaurant area. The three-nave complex contains a central barrel-vaulted area without any direct solar illumination providing ideal conditions for exhibits, while the outer sections are opened up to the landscape on either side, offering magnificent views of the castles and the lake.

Luxurious Conversion: Museum in Hohenschwangau

Diagram: Staab Architekten. 4 Foyer, 5 Museum shop, 6 Exhibition, 7 Function room, 8 Cloakroom, 9 Reception, 10 Restaurant, 11 Kitchen

A dominating feature inside the building is the repetitive diamond structure of the curved grid ceiling, appropriately a shape that also dominates the Bavarian flag. The PETG panels are backlit with LEDs positioned in each diamond-shaped element to create a pleasant, diffusely lit atmosphere. The elegant fittings inside the museum made of a bronze-coloured solid surface material and the sensitivity of the restoration of the old building, are further features that make a walk through the history of the House of Wittelsbach an uplifting and sensuous experience.

Luxurious Conversion: Museum in Hohenschwangau

Photograph: Marcus Ebener

More information about the construction details of the museum is presented in the DETAIL 10/2012 issue on the topic "Load-Bearing Structures".

 

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