ArchDaily | Broadcasting Architecture Worldwidethe world's most visited architecture website

Sign up now and start saving and organizing your favorite architecture projects and photos


Find the most inspiring products for your projects in our Product Catalog.


Get the ArchDaily Chrome Extension and be inspired with every new tab. Install here »

  1. ArchDaily
  2. Projects
  3. Institutional Buildings
  4. Germany
  5. Behnisch Architekten
  6. 2009
  7. Unilever Headquarters / Behnisch Architekten

Unilever Headquarters / Behnisch Architekten

  • 01:00 - 25 November, 2009
Unilever Headquarters / Behnisch Architekten
Unilever Headquarters / Behnisch Architekten, © Adam Mørk
© Adam Mørk

© Adam Mørk © Adam Mørk © Adam Mørk © Adam Mørk +13

  • Architects

  • Location

    Hamburg, Germany
  • Architects

    Behnisch Architekten
  • Client

    HOCHTIEF Projektentwicklung
  • Competition Year

  • Area

    38000.0 sqm
  • Project Year

  • Photographs

From the architect. The new Unilever headquarter building for Germany, Austria and Switzerland is located right by the river Elbe in Hamburg’s HafenCity. It marks the end of the route out of the town centre to Hamburg’s new attractions: the cruise ship terminal and the promenade on Strandkai. Here Unilever’s new building opens itself up to the city and its inhabitants. The central element and heart of the design is the generous atrium, flooded by daylight, which, on the ground floor, gives passers-by the opportunity to get to know the company better while browsing in the shop stocked with Unilever products, sitting in the cafe or relaxing in the spa. The atrium is also the central location for people to meet and communicate.

© Adam Mørk
© Adam Mørk

As in a city, bridges, ramps and steps connect central spaces with each other. Here people can meet, talk and enjoy the inspiring ambiance. Vibrant and communicative interaction evolves, thereby fostering a feeling of togetherness among the employees. The workplace is no longer a separate department. The building itself reinforces the identity of the company.

© Adam Mørk
© Adam Mørk

The building follows the principles of holistic, sustainable architecture. While implementing technologies that help save resources, the energy concept adheres to the principle of avoiding technical solutions wherever possible. The office area is cooled by means of thermally activated reinforced concrete ceilings. A single-layer film facade placed in front of the building’s insulation glazing protects the daylight-optimized blinds from strong wind and other weather influences. The building’s primary energy consumption during operation will be under 100 kWh/a sqm. A newly developed SMD-LED system has been deployed both for the building’s general lighting and for workplace lighting. This system is up to 70% more efficient than conventional halogen or metal halide lighting. The Unilever building received the newly established HafenCity EcoLabel in gold.

© Adam Mørk
© Adam Mørk
Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite: "Unilever Headquarters / Behnisch Architekten" 25 Nov 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>
Read comments


Geoff Goodman · November 29, 2010

Love it! Proper #architecture! Unilever Hq / Behnisch @ArchDaily

menna 3fifi · November 29, 2010

it is a wonderfull posts...i like it.

JI'S · October 13, 2010

Is this really sustainable?


Cat Leccia · March 31, 2010

Nice post :)
design lovers, get inspired!
Check out this two new brands
Boca do Lobo and Delightfull. Hope you like it!

Zdepski · December 04, 2009

Hey Brian, I'm not really sure if this project can fit in Prague... maybe try the next one.

plots · January 20, 2010 02:04 AM

the unilever building is in hamburg..

Ill · November 26, 2009

I find this project is lovely: the large void, enclosed by windows and offices and not the usual (?) corridor > which does make it look like a facade , the expression of lightness in the facade, the large amount of light inside, the green, the wood and the white. Grats.

George · November 26, 2009

The facades look like soap bubbles, which is nice for Unilever. The inside's a bit full on. You wouldn't want to be coming in with a hangover.

EDO · November 26, 2009

please visit EDO's new site.

Thank you

scarpasez · November 26, 2009

That would be a rather pleasant place to work.

David Basulto · November 26, 2009

Nice to have lunch in the central space... then a little nap under the sun in front of the water :)

Robin · November 25, 2009

It reminds me of a ship. Which seems very appropriate, considering its location.


Comments are closed

Read comments
© Adam Mørk

联合利华总部 / Behnisch Architekten