the world's most visited architecture website
i

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

Sign up now to save and organize your favorite architecture projects

i

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

Find the most inspiring products in our Product Catalog.

i

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

i

All over the world, architects are finding cool ways to re-use run-down old buildings. Click here to see the best in Refurbishment Architecture.

Want to see the coolest refurbishment projects? Click here.

i

Immerse yourself in inspiring buildings with our selection of 360 videos. Click here.

See our immersive, inspiring 360 videos. Click here.

All
Projects
Products
Events
Competitions
Navigate articles using your keyboard
  1. ArchDaily
  2. Projects
  3. Bath House
  4. Greece
  5. NaNA
  6. 2013
  7. 'Thessaloniki's Wet Dream' Thermal Bath Complex Proposal / NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)

'Thessaloniki's Wet Dream' Thermal Bath Complex Proposal / NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)

'Thessaloniki's Wet Dream' Thermal Bath Complex Proposal / NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)
'Thessaloniki's Wet Dream' Thermal Bath Complex Proposal / NaNA (NotaNumber Architects), Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)
Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)

NaNA’s project, titled ‘Thessaloniki's Wet Dream,' is a proposal for a subterranean public bath beneath a central urban plaza with a glazed roof at street level. The 4000 square meter bathing complex responds to the city’s ambitious plans for the total redesign of Eleftherias Square (i.e. Freedom Square) into a landmark that will become a magnet for the city and beyond, their proposal sets to re-establish Thessaloniki’s long lasting culture of public baths as a form of built social space par excellence. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)
Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)

Since ancient times public baths have played a central role in the unfolding of the city’s social life which under the mantle of physical culture and relaxation presented the opportunity for the most informal encounters. Roman thermae, Byzantine baths and Ottoman hammams are still evident in the city’s urban fabric, the first in the form of archaeological findings and the other two as preserved historic buildings turned into museums. The last Turkish bath operating in its original form closed in 1981.

Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)
Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)

A set of inverted arches, domes and cupolas organize the space of the public baths – extending 10 meters underneath Eleftherias Square – into an almost labyrinthic set of interconnected pools for the various water treatments. The activity in the pools is exposed at street level through a walkable glass floor giving the impression of bathers floating inside a temple. At the same time the hectic buzz of the city becomes a distant setting for the relaxing experience of bathing.

Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)
Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)

Thus the public baths acquire the qualities of an open air space as opposed to the more hermetic enclosures of the traditional typologies. A grid of plane trees is planted in the inverted columns of the arcades functioning as a uniform shading canopy for the plaza and the baths underneath. This natural canopy lets winter sunlight in and protects from overheating during summer time. Underneath this grid of trees, inside the thick pillars the more private rooms of the baths are placed.

Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)
Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)

Visitors descend to the level of the pools via three wells with spiral staircases. Round shafts in the centre of the wells house the elevators and small canteens at ground level. A sequence of sanitary facilities, washrooms, showers and cloakrooms surround the main bathing hall preparing the visitor for a ceremonial experience of body wellness.

site plan. Image Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)
site plan. Image Courtesy of NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)

The bathing complex comprises 10 pools including one 40 x 8 metre sports pool, four round pools with a gradation of warm water, an adventure pool and a water play park with cascades, two square pools for special hydrotherapy treatment and an oval grotto-like hall with bubbling jets and whirlpool. The thermal pool landscape is interrupted by rest areas and passages that lead to more private halls for sauna, aromatic steam bathing and massage therapies.

  • Architects

  • Location

    Thessaloniki, Greece
  • Design Team

    Ermis Adamantidis, Dominiki Dadatsi, Nikos Christodoulou
  • Mechanical Consultant

    G&P Engineering & Energy
  • Agronomics Consultant

    TheGreenSpace
  • Project Year

    2013
Cite: Alison Furuto. "'Thessaloniki's Wet Dream' Thermal Bath Complex Proposal / NaNA (NotaNumber Architects)" 08 Aug 2013. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/412608/thessaloniki-s-wet-dream-thermal-bath-complex-proposal-nana-notanumber-architects/> ISSN 0719-8884
Read comments
Read comments