Text description provided by the architects. The fortress at Hemsö is one of Sweden’s largest military sites from the Cold War. The fortress was built entirely underground. The island Hemsö is located next to UNESCO’s World Heritage the High Coast by the Gulf of Bothnia. The dramatic landscape and the fortress have been opened up for visitors by the governmental agency, Statens fastighetsverk (The National Property Board, http://sfv.se/en/). As a part of this development Sweco Architects were commissioned to design a new restaurant at the site.
“A refined barrack” worked as a motto during the design process and a way to work with the challenge to design a welcoming restaurant that still has a connection to the history of the site. In addition to this was the stripped down style of the Cold War and modern stealth design of aircrafts sources of inspiration. The tilted angled roofs and the box trying to hide in the terrain is a nod towards these references. The large glass surfaces will welcome and invite the visitors as they approach the restaurant and open up for the wide view over the Gulf of Bothnia.
The restaurant is located on a hillside that is sparsely forested. A narrow winding road leads to it and the nearest neighboring building is quite far away. Since the building is supposed to be close to the nature, wood is a natural choice a modern as well as traditional material in Sweden.
The façade and the supporting structure of glulam is made of spruce. In the dining area the interior walls are covered with wood panel of spruce and the rear wall of the restaurant and some interior barriers are covered with OSB. The ceilings and sound absorbents are made of Träullit (plates made of wood wool from spruce, and cement). On the floors there are ceramic tiles and parquet floor (ash).The rear part of the building, containing storage and kitchen, rests between the cliffs and is made of concrete elements.