Herzog & de Meuron, with local firm Favre & Guth, has been selected as the winners of an international competition for the design of a new global headquarters for private banking company Lombard Odier to be located in Bellevue, Switzerland on Lake Geneva.
Responding to the competition theme of ‘One Roof,’ the design consists of a single building in which all sides are given equal prominence, with no obvious front or back. Herzog & de Meuron’s winning proposal achieves this through its glassy facade and sweeping flooplates supported by slender columns.
“A stone-clad bunker would no longer be in keeping with the image of a contemporary bank,” said founding partner Pierre de Meuron. “We have designed a transparent, elegant and measured building; as such, its architecture reflects the vision and values of Lombard Odier. The form and appearance of our project are not due to aesthetic preference. Our intention is to enable all occupants of the new head office to fully appreciate the surrounding natural environment.”
Perched on a 27,400-square-meter (295,000-square-foot) site overlooking Lake Geneva, the building will accommodate 2,600 employees, providing them with flexible, high-tech workstations that will allow Lombard Odier to better serve and collaborate with clients.
“We were immediately struck by the project’s timelessness, personality and integration in its natural environment. The building will be airy and will look amazing from the ground, lake and sky,” commented Patrick Odier, Senior Managing Partner of Lombard Odier. “Everything has been designed to inspire creativity and team work in a dynamic and motivating working environment. Our clients will benefit from an exceptional venue which is easy to access and will provide all of our services and expertise under one roof.”
“At the heart of our values has always been the concept of sustainable development, combining environmental, social and economic considerations,” Odier continued. “This building integrates this concern perfectly. In particular, it will meet the highest standards of sustainable development and employ the most efficient technology available, particularly in terms of energy-saving. The quality of working conditions will be an integral part of this ecosystem.”
The project is expected to be completed by 2021.