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Italian designer evokes ancient crypt with Burgundy wellness centre
By Kim Megson 23 Sep 2016
The spa area is designed to create a sense of history
Italian architect and spa designer Alberto Apostoli has created a wellness centre in the south of France that evokes a medieval crypt.

Atrium - Spa & Beauté has been built on one of the mazy streets of Mâcon, the historic gateway town to Burgundy.

The client wanted a spa and sauna complex that reflects the history and religious background of the town – typified by the adjacent Church of Saint Pierre – so Apostoli decided to create a mystical, crypt-like space.

Built on two levels, Atrium welcomes its guests on the ground floor into a New-Baroque salon devoted to facial, hand and hair beauty treatments. A white marble staircase leads down to the stone basement and the spa facilities.

The spa is about 270sq m (2,900sq ft) in size and room height is very limited in places. In order to hide the necessary air conditioning units and air ducts, a long curved corridor was added to obtain a structure in which these elements could be hidden.

At one end of the corridor lies the spa’s wet area, with a Finnish sauna, a hydro massage area and a steam bath, almost entirely made of glass. At the other end is the treatment area, with two single rooms and a double room. A small tea corner completes the environment.

"From the first site inspection I instantly realised the great expressive and design potential of this area but, at the same time, the remarkable complications of adding structures,” said Apostoli. “We tried to create emotion through a project that focused on a simple, yet not trivial, layout and considerable efforts in terms of lighting, material research and attention to technical detail.

“What is especially satisfying in the result is the mix of pre-existing stone and contemporary materials, managed through a thoughtful creative process.

"It goes to show that even in small projects, with due attention and richness, considerable results can be achieved in terms of creativity and well-being."


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NEWS
Italian designer evokes ancient crypt with Burgundy wellness centre
POSTED 23 Sep 2016 . BY Kim Megson
The spa area is designed to create a sense of history Credit: Studio Apostoli
We tried to create emotion through a project that focused on a simple, yet not trivial, layout
– Alberto Apostoli
Italian architect and spa designer Alberto Apostoli has created a wellness centre in the south of France that evokes a medieval crypt.

Atrium - Spa & Beauté has been built on one of the mazy streets of Mâcon, the historic gateway town to Burgundy.

The client wanted a spa and sauna complex that reflects the history and religious background of the town – typified by the adjacent Church of Saint Pierre – so Apostoli decided to create a mystical, crypt-like space.

Built on two levels, Atrium welcomes its guests on the ground floor into a New-Baroque salon devoted to facial, hand and hair beauty treatments. A white marble staircase leads down to the stone basement and the spa facilities.

The spa is about 270sq m (2,900sq ft) in size and room height is very limited in places. In order to hide the necessary air conditioning units and air ducts, a long curved corridor was added to obtain a structure in which these elements could be hidden.

At one end of the corridor lies the spa’s wet area, with a Finnish sauna, a hydro massage area and a steam bath, almost entirely made of glass. At the other end is the treatment area, with two single rooms and a double room. A small tea corner completes the environment.

"From the first site inspection I instantly realised the great expressive and design potential of this area but, at the same time, the remarkable complications of adding structures,” said Apostoli. “We tried to create emotion through a project that focused on a simple, yet not trivial, layout and considerable efforts in terms of lighting, material research and attention to technical detail.

“What is especially satisfying in the result is the mix of pre-existing stone and contemporary materials, managed through a thoughtful creative process.

"It goes to show that even in small projects, with due attention and richness, considerable results can be achieved in terms of creativity and well-being."
The brief called for a magical, mysterious space Credit: Studio Apostoli
The centre's salon is devoted to facial, hand and hair beauty treatments Credit: Studio Apostoli
Lighting was used to create the illusion of a floating tea station Credit: Studio Apostoli
A marble staircase leads down into the spa area Credit: Studio Apostoli
A long, LED-lit curving corridor was added to create a better structure for the space Credit: Studio Apostoli
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