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White Arkitekter's New Take on Traditional Swedish Cold Bathhouses

White Arkitekter's New Take on Traditional Swedish Cold Bathhouses
White Arkitekter's New Take on Traditional Swedish Cold Bathhouses, Jönköping Bathhouse. Image Courtesy of White Arkitekter
Jönköping Bathhouse. Image Courtesy of White Arkitekter

Scandinavian practice White Arkitekter has won the architectural competition for Jönköping Bathhouse in southern Sweden. Designed to be an all-season bathhouse on the shores of Lake Vättern, the project takes advantage of different conditions in the cardinal directions to create an all-year bathing experience. Built entirely from wood, the bathhouse is designed to create a contemplative setting, immersing the bather in tranquil, natural surroundings.

Jönköping Bathhouse. Image Courtesy of White Arkitekter
Jönköping Bathhouse. Image Courtesy of White Arkitekter

The international competition held by Vätterhem together with Tosito was for a bathhouse to enjoy the unique setting of Sweden’s second largest lake. White Arkitekter's winning proposal is a modern take on the traditional Swedish Kallbadhus, or ‘cold bathhouse’, with a streamlined, minimalist jetty, complete with sauna and viewing platforms. A wooden bridge-like walkway leads from the shore to the main sauna building, and an arrangement of outdoor viewing platforms, supported on wooden stilts, looks out over the lake. Wooden steps descend into the water below, allowing a smooth transition from the hot sauna into the cold freshwater lake.

White’s proposal was unanimously selected by the jury. A representative commented: “The proposal has a good and clear holistic approach with a beautiful and appropriate solution. The analysis of the site and the architecture of the building is interconnected throughout. The proposal has a considerate and poetic way of working with light and shadow, materials, lines of sight and views, different spatial experiences and façade expression.”

Jönköping Bathhouse. Image Courtesy of White Arkitekter
Jönköping Bathhouse. Image Courtesy of White Arkitekter

Designed to maximize the expansive views, the unisex sauna faces out over the lake and the horizon. Able to accommodate up to 20 people it is designed to welcome and accommodate individual swimmers, families and groups of friends alike. The proposed design features a sauna surrounded by a series of multi-use open wooden terraces, designed to simultaneously facilitate sunbathing and offer shelter from the wind, and to create all-season spaces for barbecues and recreation in the immediate bathhouse surroundings. Housed in the same building, the design features facilities including a changing area and kitchen.

The project is set to commence in January 2020.

News via White Arkitekter

About this author
Cite: Eric Baldwin. "White Arkitekter's New Take on Traditional Swedish Cold Bathhouses" 09 Jul 2019. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/920610/white-arkitekters-new-take-on-traditional-swedish-cold-bathhouses/> ISSN 0719-8884

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