AD Classics: Royal Hotel / Arkady Mordvinov

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Originally completed in 1953 as the Hotel Ukraina, the Royal Hotel was designed by and Vyacheslav Oltarzhevsky and stands as one of the “Seven Sisters” of (Mordvinov was acting as the Chairman of the Committee of Construction and Architecture at the time).  This five-star hotel complex was the tallest hotel in the world at its completion at 34 stories (650ft) and is sited on the banks of the Moskva River.  This unique site required considerable structural innovation during early construction, which will be discussed later in the feature.

Theory: Chapter 1


It might seem strange, but it started with a death. The death of the father precipitated the decision. The death was not unexpected but the outcomes were. Dean would sit in the hospital room with his leg next to his father’s dangling bag of piss. The tubes with fluids going in and out. The nurse periodically coming to vacuum the solid bits of phlegm to keep the ventilator clear. His father was in a hospital of no particular reputation in a sunny part of Los Angeles. IT was the wrong sort of hospital. The sort you come to die in rather than miraculously emerge from. Dean would sit in the room with the beeps and gurgling sounds. The family was there too. Not always at the same time. They had come from around the country. Stopping their lives momentarily, the last time they would visit this town they had visited many times.

A Room for London Public Bookings

Public bookings to spend a night above the Thames in A Room for London, opened today (for nights January to June 2012) more information about a second stage of bookings (for nights July to December 2012) can be found here.  The one-bedroom installation perched on the roof of Southbank Centre’s Queen Elizabeth Hall was designed by David Kohn Architects and artist Fiona Banner. The design competition for A Room for London initiated by Living Architecture, and , in association with Southbank Center attracted 500 architects and artists entries from across the world.

ArchDaily has previously showcased David Kohn Architects and Fiona Banner‘s winning entry as well as selected entries from the design competition.

MOD Office / Ministry of Design

© CI&A Photography

Architects: Ministry of Design (MOD)
Location: Singapore, Singapore
Contractor: Interior Composite
Photographs: CI&A Photography

National Park of Mali / Kere Architecture

© Iwan Baan

Architect: Kere ArchitectureDiébédo Francis Kéré
Location: Bamako, Mali
Client: AKDN /AKTC
Project Team: Diébédo Francis Kéré, Isabelle McKinnon, Claudia Buhmann, Olivier Gondouin, Emanuela Smiglak, Ines Bergdolt
Landscape Design: Planning Partners, SA
Structural Engineer: Birad SARL (concrete), SAMKO Turkey (roofing)
Construction Supervision: AKTC (Roberto Fabbro, Souleymane Diallo, Manuel Mora Sánchez, Hamed el Biblawy) in coordination with 
Plant Engineering: AKTC (Sylvain Fovet)
Project Area: 3000 sqm
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Iwan Baan

AD Round Up: Sports Architecture Part VIII

© John Lewis Marshall


Round Ups are back! And for today, we have our 8th selection of previously featured sports architecture projects, including a stadium used for South Africa’s World Cup last year. Check them all after the break.

The 4th Gymnasium / HVDN
Until recently, the area in the Houthavens was an open, undefined space with scattered placed industrial buildings. Meanwhile, due to problems with the development-zoning plan, the area is temporarily in use. By now it has changed into a lively spot, a “place to be” for the city with several restaurants, artist studios and student housing (read more…)


© Gino Santa Maria -

Like anything that works well in life, chemistry is one of those things we can’t explain but is often the key ingredient that ensures that something ”works”. What is chemistry? Is it shared passion? Is it mutual trust? Who knows, but you know when you have it and you know it when you don’t. Having it is magical.

My team recently tore down an old beach house and we are beginning to build a new home for a couple where the chemistry was spot on. From the very beginning, we had a client-builder relationship that both parties committed to, nurtured and developed. Now that the project is underway, managing expectations while achieving maximum quality are just a few of the main ingredients in nurturing this chemistry. Building quality relationships with city officials and inspectors is not only mandatory for a successful job, but it also enhances my client’s trust in me. Then there are the neighbors. My clients need to co-exist with these people long after we are gone, so keeping them happy is vital to my client’s satisfaction with me. Chemistry is bumped up another notch when my clients see us working harmoniously with the neighbors and minimizing disruptions.

City Cottage / Verstas Architects

© Andreas Meichsner

Architects: Verstas Architects
Location: Lauttasaari,
Project Area: 14 sqm
Photographs: Andreas Meichsner

Jung-hyun’s Apartment / Moohoi Architecture

© Park Young-chae

Architect: Moohoi Architecture
Location: DaeLim Appartment, SeoDaemoon-Koo, ,
Lead Architect: Kim Jae-kwan
Construction: Kim Jae-kwan
Written Material: Kim Jae-kwan
Project Area: 152 sqm
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Park Young-chae

How to Get Hired at an Architecture Firm – Five Simple Steps

Photo by thinkpanama

These five points were compiled by, BUILD LLC, a small architecture firm that recently expanded their office from 4 employees to 5.  So what inspired the partners at BUILD to take on a junior architect after receiving numerous resumes?  The hints lay within these five points, which may not be for everyone, but give an idea of what will make a candidate stand out among the rest.

BUILD offers a disclaimer: “This is not the politically correct version -this is the down in the trenches, get ‘er done version.”

Catch the points after the break.

Yandex Kiev Office / za bor architects

© Peter Zaytsev

Architects: za bor architects
Location: Kiev,
Project Team: Peter Zaytsev and Arseniy Borisenko
Project Area: 290 sqm
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Peter Zaytsev

Investigating Architecture Through Sculpture

Photo by Marie Aschehoug-Clauteaux -

Architecture often attempts to play with several spatial and formal concepts but the extent of this experimentation is often limited by budgetary and engineering constraints. Sculpture is a medium with which formal and spatial tests can be performed to an aesthetic extent without architectural limitation. There are several modern sculptors whose products can be seen as architecture. Here we will look at the works of Robert Smithson, and Anish Kapoor.

Drake Hotel Tower / Macklowe + CIM + RVA

Via Curbed

Earlier in the week, we shared a video of Cook+Fox’s Bank of America Tower at One Bryant Park.   Recently, we’ve heard some talk of a new skyscraper that may be making an appearance in the skyline.   Situated on the site of the former Drake Hotel at the corner of 57th Street and Park Avenue,  the project is the work of California developer CIM, Harry Macklowe and Rafael Viñoly [although it is not designed by ].  Macklowe demolished the old hotel and the zoning allows new development to surpass a soaring 1,000 feet!  Although all is speculative, reported that the tower may reach 1,420 feet!  At that height, the tower will become the second tallest in the city – passing the Empire State and the Bank of America building – and, get this, it will even beat the height of One World Trade [if you don’t count the 400 ft antenna]!   Remember all the controversy surrounding Nouvel’s Torre Verre for Midtown?  We wonder what this project will stir up with its bland aesthetics and its crazy height.   Just to give you an idea of the project, we found these images on and as the site reports, “WNY user STR did some modeling of the Vinoly structure, and another commenter credits the drawings as ‘not official renderings, just rough sketches based on descriptions from some people who have been privy to the design process.’ ”  What do you think of the plans for the new Drake Hotel site?

More renderings after the break. 

BMW Guggenheim Lab invites you to a talk with architect Yoshiharu Tsukamoto

BMW Guggenheim Lab invites you to a talk with architect Yoshiharu Tsukamoto

BMW Guggenheim Lab design architect Yoshiharu Tsukamoto, Co-Principal of Atelier Bow-Wow…, discusses the importance of behaviorology and the crucial role that architecture can play in giving back a sense of autonomy of spacial practice to citizens.
The event will

Guerrero house / Alberto Campo Baeza


Architects: Alberto Campo Baeza
Location: Cadiz,
Collaborators: Ignacio Aguirre, Miguel Vela
Project Year: 2005
Project Area: 170 sqm, 400 sqm with Patios
Photographs: Roland Halbe

Jøssingfjord Museum Proposal / Superunion Architects & Powerhouse Company


The Museum proposal, by Superunion Architects and Powerhouse Company, is both a testimony to the power of man as well as to the power of nature. They have conceived it in a few simple elements to create a roof that shelters and directs the light and views. Under this roof, all functions are simply laid out according to its most preferable position. As an underlying basis, a flexible orthogonal grid allows for future changes. More images and architects’ description after the break.

In Progress: Statoil / a-lab

© Jiri Havran

Architect: a-lab
Location: , Norway
Client: IT-Fornebu Eiendom
Landscape Design: Østengen & Bergo
Structural Engineer: Norconsult
M&E Services: Electro : Føyn Consult / Ventilation : Norconsult
Build Cost: 1,500 mill NOK
Project Area: 117,000 sqm
Photographs: Jiri Havran, Luis Fonseca

Temenos / Roth Sheppard Architects

© Frank Ooms

Roth Sheppard Architects is an architecture firm in Colorado with over two decades of experience. Principals Jeff Sheppard, AIA and Herb Roth, FAIA, and a growing young staff recently moved into their new office space, titled Temenos. Roth Sheppard Architects designed their workspace to marry their office’s established modern aesthetics with the fresh ideas of young clients and employees.

Architect: Roth Sheppard Architects
Location: , Colorado,
Consultants: Performance Engineering, McDonald Consulting + Design, Inc., R2HWilliams Construction
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Frank Ooms