По-русски

​Stairway to Heaven

The project of a hotel in the settlement of Yantarny is an example of a new recreational complex typology, and a new format that unites the hotel, the business, and the cultural functions. All of this is complemented by 100% integration with nature.

Written by:
Alla Pavlikova
Translated by:
Anton Mizonov

14 May 2020
Object
mainImg
In the end of 2019, the town planning council of Kaliningrad Oblast approved the architectural project of Amber Residence hotel designed by ASADOV Bureau. The new hotel complex will be built in the settlement of Yantarny, located on the shore of the Baltic Sea, west of Kaliningrad, an hour’s drive away from the Khrabrovo Airport.

This is not the first time that the ASADOV team works in Kaliningrad Oblast. In 2018, it was a housing project named “Russian Europe”. Still earlier, a competition project for the Kaliningrad Music Theater. And here is a new project – the picturesque Baltic shore, marked by the world-renowned eco-label, UNESCO blue flag, a long wooden promenade running along the sea shore, and the Sinyavinskoe Lake behind it – a haunt of the local divers. This beautiful scenery will surround the hotel complex with green terraces, a swimming pool, and a park ensemble.

The request of developing the concept of a hotel complex was forwarded to ASADOV Bureau by the communication agency ARS MEDIA GROUP (A.M.G.), who at that moment was already working with the client on that project. The architects were given an ambitious task of not just designing a seaside hotel but coming up with a new format of a recreational complex, considering the complex historical background and natural surroundings.

Amber Residence hotel complex in Yantarny
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


The settlement of Yantarny is quite small; it stretches along the sea shore. The place is known for the cleanest and widest beaches in the region, and, of course, its amber mines. Amber has been mined here since the XVII century, when the settlement was called Palmnicken, and the amber mining is still going on.

The hotel was to be built on a 1.3-hectare land site. It occupies the entire slope from the derelict amber mine Anna down to the active “Galera” restaurant built as a wooden ship with a large parking lot and a wide strip of sand next to it.

Amber Residence hotel complex. Master plan
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


The mine Anna borders the land site from the north. In January 2011, they installed a memorial on the territory of the former mine in memory of Palmnicken massacre when thousands of prisoners of concentration camps were shot here in the winter of 1945. Designed by the Israel sculptor Frank Meisler, the monument – composed of hands reaching up in the air and holding numbers, which the prisoners were assigned instead of their names – was created on the funds sponsored by the local Jewish community. Today, each year, Yantarny witnesses a mourning march commemorating those tragic events.

When the project was considered by the regional town planning council, one of the main questions that arose was about incompatibility of the entertainment function and the tragic historical background. However, come to think of it, currently the territory around the monument is a haunt of the local residents and tourists – a beach, a promenade, a restaurant, and a scatter of summer cafes. The new complex, as the designers hope, will enhance the cultural significance of this place. Andrey Asadov shares that together with the Jewish community they are discussing the idea of creating a Jewish center of culture and tolerance that will present not only the history of this nation but also the pictures by the modern painters from all over the world. Next to the memorial, there will appear an amphitheater. And the seaside zone with its sand dunes will get an art park in the stead of the former parking lot for staging regular shows and festivals. The task of organizing such activities will be readily tackled by A.M.G, the curator of such events as “Circle of Light” and “Perm, the Cultural Capital”.

Amber Residence hotel complex in Yantarny
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


At the current design stage, ASADOV Bureau, in collaboration with A.M.G, is searching for the optimum format. So far, all parties are leaning toward the idea of a back office, the venue for visiting working sessions and conferences. It must be said that both location and transport accessibility (about a 50-minutes’ drive from Kaliningrad) are quite conducive to that idea.

The search for the solution of developing the Yantarny territory even brought about the launch of a new research project Development 2.0. According to Andrey Asadov, the project already conducted a series of Instagram live streams, devoted to “development and architecture of tomorrow”. Mind, all of these things sprang from this single project of a local scale.

Amber Residence hotel complex in Yantarny
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


The history of the place defined the functional content of the building. The natural surroundings made the basis for the historical solution. As a rule, a hotel claims the role of a centerpiece – in the city, oftentimes, these are multistory, high-profile buildings. In the case of the Yantarny hotel complex, it is exactly the other way around. The land site occupies a steep slope with a relief drop of about 20 meters. And the entire seven-story complex hides in this slope, masked by green roofs, and becoming a part of nature itself.

The building has sophisticated geometry that almost exactly follows the natural topography. The stories follow horizontals of the terrain, ascending the slope in broad ledges. The flat operated roof of each lower tier becomes the terrace for the ensuing upper floor, striving to recreate the character of a sea cliff, green and hilly.

Amber Residence hotel complex in Yantarny
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


Generally speaking, terraced buildings are one of the oldest types of construction. Since the days of the Ancient Rome, humanity has not yet invented a technique as efficient that would make it possible to make the most out of complex terrain without having to make significant changes to it.

The whole complex consists of six single and double-story lines of construction and seven floors, counting which could be quite tricky – because they are arranged on the slope in such a sophisticated way. The widest line – situated above the third floor – conditionally divides the zones of the hotel and the apartments: 47 hotel rooms are situated on the first three floors, and 50 long-stay apartments occupy the remaining part of the building up the hill.

Amber Residence hotel complex. Section view
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


The broad terrace between the third and fourth floors has a real park on it with full-size trees and shrubs. There is a whole system of lawns, courtyards, walking trails, boardwalks, flowerbeds, and hotel rooms, packed into several separate volumes underneath sloping green roofs that serve as the continuation of the park space. One can ascend them like a hill, sit on a lawn in solitude, and admire the sea panorama from this height.

Amidst the lush vegetation, one will have a hard time spotting the stained glass windows of the facades, playing with reflections of sunlight – all of the hotel rooms and apartments are turned to the water with their panoramic windows. From the side of the sea, and when viewed from above, the complex looks more like a terraced garden in the spirit of park ensembles of Italian Renaissance than like a seven-story building with a total area of 13700 square meters.

Amber Residence hotel complex
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


Amber Residence hotel complex
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


Approximately in the middle of the building, an elongated glass atrium descends down to the sea, looking from a distance like a waterfall, with a grand staircase that connects all the tiers of the complex.

Amber Residence hotel complex. The functional arrangement
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


The first floor of the complex will include a restaurant opened not only for the guests at the hotel but also to everybody, a swimming pool, a fitness area, a conference hall, and a culture center. The latter will have an individual entrance from the side of the memorial. In front of the entrance, there will be an open air amphitheater for 200 people.

Amber Residence hotel complex. The townhouses
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


In addition to the main volume of the building, along the shore line, and close to one of the creeks that dissect the sand surface of the beach, there will appear nine three-story townhouses. Each of them will contain six individual apartments. The townhouses are turned to the sea with their laconic reserved facades and large stained glass windows under gable roofs. In front of them, there are also small green terraces. The proximity to the water, the transparency of architecture, and the scale of construction make one instantly think that they are at some Mediterranean seaside resort. However, let’s get back to the reality: the Baltic Sea can be tough even in summer. Hence the easily readable Scandinavian features of a warm and reliable dwelling.

Amber Residence hotel complex. The townhouses
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


Amber Residence hotel complex. The townhouses
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


Amber Residence hotel complex. The townhouses
Copyright: © ASADOV architects


We must note that so far the functional program of the complex has not yet received its final approval, and will probably be subject to change in the course of further development. We can only be sure about the architectural part – a peculiar manifesto of eco-architecture, supported by the professional community of the region and general public as well. The authors of the project hope that the complex will not become a thing in itself, but, thanks to the input from the Jewish Center and the art park will give a momentum to the cultural develop of this place, becoming a new center of attraction in the Kaliningrad Oblast.
  • zooming
    1 / 3
    Amber Residence hotel complex. Plans of the 1st and 2nd floors
    Copyright: © ASADOV architects
  • zooming
    2 / 3
    Amber Residence hotel complex. Plans of the 3rd and 4th floors
    Copyright: © ASADOV architects
  • zooming
    3 / 3
    Amber Residence hotel complex. Plans of the 5th, 6th, 7th floors
    Copyright: © ASADOV architects


14 May 2020

Written by:

Alla Pavlikova
Translated by:
Anton Mizonov
Headlines now
Park of Sentiments
The project of “Romantic Park Tuchkov Buyan”, which was developed by the consortium of Studio 44 and WEST 8, and has won an international competition, combines sculptural landscape design and wooden structures, variety of spatial features and an eventful agenda, designed for diverse audience, with a beautiful and complex passeist idea of a palace park, meant to evoke thoughts and feelings.
​Architecture as an Educational Tool
The concept of a charity school “Tochka Budushchego” (“Point of the Future”) in Irkutsk is based on cutting-edge educational programs, and is designed, among other things, for adapting orphaned children for independent life. An important role is played by the architecture of the building: its structure and different types of interconnected spaces.
​The Gallery Approach
In this article, we are covering the concept of a Central District Clinic for 240 patients, designed by Ginzburg Architects, which won at a competition organized by the Architects Union and the Healthcare Ministry.
Health Constructor
In this issue, we are publishing the concept of a standard clinic designed by UNK Project, which took second place in the competition organized by the Union of Architects of Russia in collaboration with the Healthcare Ministry.
From Foundation to Teaspoon
Based on the taste of their friendly clients, the architects Olga Budennaya and Roman Leonidov designed and built a house in the Moscow metropolitan area playing Art Nouveau. At the same time, they enriched the typology of a private house with modern functions of a garage loft and a children’s art studio.
Continuation and Development
The second “office” stage of Comcity, the most popular business park of the “New Moscow” area, continues the underground street of the already existing part of the complex, responding to its architectural identity.
​The Aperture Effect
For a housing complex built in the town of Pushkino in the Moscow metropolitan area, KPLN Architects designed facades that adjust the stream of light by using the wall geometry.
​A Comfortable City in Itself
The project that we are about to cover is seemingly impossible amidst human anthills, chaotically interspersed with old semi-neglected dachas. Meanwhile, the housing complex built on the Comcity business part does offer a comfortable environment of decent city: not excessively high-rise and moderately private as a version of the perfect modern urbanist solution.
Moving on the Edge
The housing complex “Litsa” (“Faces”) on Moscow’s Khodynka Field is one of the new grand-scale buildings that complement the construction around it. This particular building skillfully tackles the scale, subjugating it to the silhouette and the pattern; it also makes the most of the combination of a challenging land site and formidable square footage requirements, packing a whole number of features within one volume, so the house becomes an analogue of a city. And, to cap it all, it looks like a family that securely protects the children playing in the yard from... well, from everything, really.
Visual Stability Agent
A comparatively small house standing on the border of the Bolshevik Factory combines two diametrically opposite features: expensive materials and decorative character of Art Deco, and a wide-spaced, even somewhat brutal, facade grid that highlights a laminated attic.
The Faraday Cage
The project of the boutique apartment complex in the 1st Truzhenikov Lane is the architects’ attempt to squeeze a considerable volume into a tiny spot of land, at the same time making it look graceful and respectable. What came to their rescue was metal, stone, and curvilinear glass.
Color and Line
The new successful techniques developed by A.Len for designing a kindergarten under budget constraints: the mosaic of irregular windows and working with color.
The Union of Art and Technology
His interest for architecture of the 1930’s is pretty much the guiding star for Stepan Liphart. In his project of the “Amo” house on St. Petersburg’s Vasilyevsky Island, the architect based himself on Moscow Art Deco - aesthetically intricate and decorated in scratch-work technique. As a bonus, he developed the city block typology as an organic structure.
The Countdown
The project that Evgeniy Gerasimov and Partners developed for Moscow’s Leningrad Avenue: the tallest building in the company’s portfolio, continuing the tradition of Moscow’s Stalin architecture.
White Town
In the project that they developed for a southern region of Russia, OSA Architects use multilayered facades that create an image of seaside resort architecture, and, in the vein of the latest trends of today, mix up different social groups that the residents belong to.
​Just a Mirror for the Sun
The house that Sergey Skuratov designed in Nikolovorobinsky Alley is thought out down to the last detail. It adapts three historical facades, interprets a feeling of a complex city, is composed of many layers, and catches plenty of sunlight, from sunrises to sunsets. The architect himself believes that the main role of this house is creating a background for another nearby project of his, Art House in the Tessinsky Alley.
​Part of the Whole
On June 5, the winners of Moscow Architectural Award were announced. The winners list includes the project of a school in Troitsk for 2,100 students, with its own astronomy dome, IT testing ground, museum, and a greenhouse on the roof.
Pedagogical Architecture
Yet another project of a private school, in which Archimatika realizes the concept of aesthetic education and introduces a new tradition: combining Scandinavian and Soviet experience, turning to works of art, and implementing sustainable technologies.
​Rational Arrangement
In this article, we are examining a complex of buildings and interiors of the first stage of the project that has recently become extremely popular – the Kommunarka clinic.
​Parallel Universe
In the “Parallel House” residence that he designed in the Moscow metropolitan area, the architect Roman Leonidov created a dramatic sculptural composition from totally basic shapes – parallelepipeds, whose collision turned into an exciting show.
​Breakwater
In the Istra district of Moscow metropolitan area, the tandem of 4izmerenie and ARS-ST designed a sports complex – a monovolume that has the shape of a chamfered parallelepiped with a pointed “nose” like a ship’s bow.
​Stairway to Heaven
The project of a hotel in the settlement of Yantarny is an example of a new recreational complex typology, and a new format that unites the hotel, the business, and the cultural functions. All of this is complemented by 100% integration with nature.
​Cape of Good Hope
In this issue, we are showing all the seven projects that participated in a closed-door competition to create a concept for the headquarters of Gazprom Neft, as well as provide expert opinions on those projects.
​Waves of Sound
The conceptual design of a music school: proximity to an Alvar Aalto building, expressive organics, and an attempt to draw public attention to a “low-profile” competition.
​The Outer Space
Honoring the 300th anniversary of the Kuznetsk coal fields in 2021, a new passenger terminal of the Aleksey Leonov Airport in the city of Kemerovo will be built, designed by GK Spectrum and ASADOV Architectural Bureau.
​The Pivot of Narkomfin Building
Ginzburg Architects finished the restoration of the Narkomfin Building’s laundry unit – one of the most important elements of the famous monument of Soviet avant-garde architecture.
​Wicker Vitality
Next to the Dubrovka metro station, ADM has designed a Vitality housing complex with a polychrome mixture of Klinker brick on its ridged facades.
​Freedom Factory
The housing complex “Respublika” is so large that it can be arguably called a micro-town, yet, at the same time, it easily overcomes most of the problems that usually arise with mass housing construction. How could Archimatika achieve that? We are examining that on the example of the first stage of the complex.
​The Flowing Lines
The five houses of the “Svoboda” block belonging to the “Simvol” residential complex present a vivid example of all-rounded work performed by the architects on an integral fragment of the city, which became the embodiment of the approach to architecture that hitherto was not to be seen anywhere in Moscow: everything is subjected to the flow of lines – something like a stream, enhanced by the powerful pattern of the facades akin to “super-graphics”.
​A City by the Water
The concept of a large-scale housing development at the edge of Voronezh, near the city reservoir, or “the sea”, as it is locally called, uses the waterside height difference to create a sophisticated public space, paying a lot of attention to the distribution of masses that determine the look of the future complex if viewed from the opposite bank of the river.
A Journey to the Country of Art Deco
The “Little France” residential complex on the 20th line of the Vasilyevsky Island presents an interesting make-believe dialogue between its architect, Stepan Liphart, the architect of the New Hermitage, masters of the Silver Age, and Soviet Art Deco, about interesting professional topics, such as a house with a courtyard in the historical center of Saint Petersburg, and the balance between the wall and the stained glass in the architectonics of the facade. Here are the results of this make-believe conversation.
​A House in a Port
This housing complex on the Dvinskaya Street is the first case of modern architecture on the Gutuevsky Island. The architectural bureau “A-Len” thoroughly explores the context and creates a landmark for further transformations of this area of Saint Petersburg.
​Balance of Infill Development
Anatoly Stolyarchuk Architectural Studio is designing a house that inadvertently prevails over the surrounding buildings, yet still tries to peacefully coexist with the surrounding environment, taking it to a next level.
​The Precious Space
Evolution Design and T+T Architects reported about the completion of the interior design project of Sberbank headquarters on the Kutuzovsky Avenue. In the center of the atrium, hovers the “Diamant” meeting room; everything looks like a chest full of treasures, including the ones of a hi-tech kind.
​Big Little Victory
In a small-sized school located in Domodedovo in Moscow metropolitan area, ASADOV_ architects did a skillful job of tackling the constraints presented by the modest budget and strict spatial limitations – they designed sunlit classrooms, comfortable lounges, and even a multi-height atrium with an amphitheater, which became the center of school life.
​The Social Biology of Landscape
The list of new typologies of public spaces and public projects has been expanded yet again — thanks to Wowhaus. This time around, this company came up with a groundbreaking by Russian standards approach to creating a place where people and animals can communicate.
​Watched by the Angels from up Above
Held in the General Staff building of the Hermitage Museum, the anniversary exhibition of “Studio 44” is ambitious and diverse. The exhibition was designed to give a comprehensive showcase of the company’s architecture in a whole number of ways: through video, models, drawings, installations, and finally, through a real-life project, the Enfilade, which the exhibition opens up, intensifies, and makes work the way it was originally intended.
​A New Version of the Old City
The house at Malaya Ordynka, 19, fits in perfectly with the lineup of the street, looking even as if it straightened the street up a little, setting a new tone for it – a tone of texture, glitter, “sunny” warmth, and, at the same time, reserved balance of everything that makes the architecture of an expensive modern house.
Stepan Liphart: “Standing your ground is the right thing to do”
A descendant of German industrialists, “Jophan’s son”, and an architect, speaks about how studying architectural orders tempers one’s character, and how a team of just a few people can design grand-scale housing projects to be built in the center of Saint Petersburg. Also: Santa Claus appearing in a Stalin high-rise, an arch portal to the outer space, mannerism painting, and the palaces of Paris – all covered in an interview with Stepan Liphart.
​Honey and Copper
In the Moscow area, the architect Roman Leonidov designed the “Cool House” residence, very much in the spirit of Frank Lloyd Wright, spreading it parallel to the ground, and accentuating the horizontal lines in it. The color composition is based on juxtaposition of warm wood of a honey hue and cold copper blue.
​The Ring on the Saisara Lake
The building of the Philharmonic Hall and the Theater of Yakut Epos, standing on the shore of the sacred lake, is inscribed into an epic circle and contains three volumes, reminiscent of the traditional national housing. The roof is akin to the Alaas – a Yakut village standing around a lake. In spite of its rich conceptual agenda, the project remains volumetrically abstract, and keeps up a light form, making the most of its transparency, multiple layers, and reflections.
Architecture of Evanescence
On the Vernadskogo Avenue, next to the metro station, appeared a high-rise landmark that transformed the entire area: designed by UNK Project, the “Academic” business center uncovered, in the form of its architecture, the meanings of the local place names.
The Theater and Music Circles
The contest-winning ambitious grand-scale project of the main theater and concert complex of the Moscow area includes three auditoriums, a yard – a public area – a higher school of music, and a few hotels. It promises to become a high-profile center for the classical music festivals on a national scale.