Project details
Architect: Network of Architecture
Town: eiser Alm/Alpe di Siusi, Saltria.

Architectural studio Network of Architecture, also known as noa *, have transformed a hotel in the snow-filled Italian mountains into mini-chalets, which mirrors the charm of an alpine village.

noa* has long been committed to developing innovative models of receptivity and green tourism, and recently was included by Dezeen in the short list of the 20 emerging international architecture firms for the year 2018. The aim of their Zallinger project, located in Seiser Alm, was to improve the quality and accommodation capacity of an old mountain hotel structure without altering the landscape and environmental balance.

All image credits: Alex Filz

The project, completed in 2017, has created new spaces without altering the existing volumes and reflects the original characteristics of the old village. As Architect Stefan Rier explains: "We have also tried to bring out that strong relationship between architecture and context, which characterizes all our works. We want to propose new models of life and hospitality that on the one hand recover traditional forms and materials, on the other hand express quality of design, high levels of comfort and sustainability. We think it's important to think of new spaces and ways to inhibit it: environments on a human scale, comfortable, welcoming, but above all unique and authentic".

The studio's aim was to recover the traditional structure of the South Tyrolean mountain pastures which resulted in the design of the chalets; the external claddings that surround the buildings are made of blocks of solid wood and are stacked together appearing as the dominant aesthetic in the new settlement. The wooden panels are designed to be able to open at the large windows, providing a view of the alpine scenery, and when they are closed, they create evocative light and shadows in the rooms, contributing to the relaxation of hotel guests.

Sustainability, respect for the mountains and contact with nature are the principles that have guided all design choices. In the design of the rooms, careful use of the space was made to provide high levels of comfort in relatively small sizes; the roofs wood shingles, typical of the South Tyrolean tradition, were used; all the materials have been certified and the complex of buildings, heated by pallets, has obtained the Clima Hotel certification. The studio decided not to illuminate the paths connecting the chalets and the shelter, to avoid light pollution and allow guests, equipped with lanterns, to admire the charm of the starry sky. 

To view more about the project, visit Noa's website