Many clever and inspiring examples of adaptive reuse grace these pages, from abandoned Walmarts transformed into libraries, slate mines into trampoline parks and gas stations into intergenerational cultural centres.
In downtown Jyväskylä, Finland, Studio Puisto Architects converted a bank building dating back to 1953 into a modern hostel. It's not your typical backpacker, dormitory-style type of place, but one that has smaller, enclosed bedrooms and features quite a few swanky amenities, including a basement restaurant, a spa, sauna and even a jacuzzi in the former vault.
The architects say that preserving the building's heritage was important:
The building was previously a bank, and it was decided that the reinforced concrete basement bunker should be left as a reminder of the history of the building.
The new scheme emphasizes the common areas by giving more space to the shared amenities. In response, the bedrooms on the upper levels have been made smaller to make more room for the shared bathrooms and kitchens. On each of the upper floors, there are three different types of sleeping options: less costly 'mini-rooms' that still have their own windows; larger rooms with their own closets and desks; and rooms hidden in the intriguing birch plywood-covered volumes that occupy the middle of the floor. The architects say:
[...This design] expands the living area outside the bedrooms, which also makes the accommodation experience more communal.
Here's a look inside one of the bigger rooms, which includes a bed with wardrobe, and a small desk and mirror.
Thanks to the efficient design of these sleeping rooms, they feel cozy rather than cramped. For instance, in one of the smaller rooms which line the outer perimeter of the floor plan, the bed occupies the entire space, but is elevated onto a platform that is packed with storage drawers, a utensil drawer and a refrigerator.
Here are the shared bathrooms and kitchen; the colour palette combines a stark, modern black with the warm wood materials to give a nice contrast.
While offering a more communal experience, the redesign nevertheless gives plenty of privacy to its guests, thanks to the private bedrooms. It means a better night's sleep, without losing too much of that congenial experience that hostels are famous for. To find out more, visit Studio Puisto Architects.
Via: Design Milk