"Field of Life" is a non-profit organization whose mission is to create a center where children and adolescents can develop personalities, discover their special talents and skills and become well-rounded individuals by participating in various athletic, cultural and academic activities and programs. The project will be implemented with an endowment by Stavros Niarchos Foundation.
Three completely different scenes comprise the base of our concept: the urban backyard, the schoolyard and the small-scale yard of the typical Athenian neighborhood house. The carefree and creative sensation of the urban backyard, the educational organized system of the schoolyard and the feeling of protection and introversion of the family home yard are all very important parts of the spatial experience connected to a child growing up and forming a sense of self. These three scenes represent the natural transition from the protected microcosm of childhood to the adventurous reality of life.
Small-scale forms and configurations are required, not only in order to suit a child’s age and perception of space, but also to prevent exposure to the nearby industrial buildings, so that the environment feels friendly and protective. For this reason, we propose a horizontal development of the building expanding to the perimeter of the plot and at the same time perforated in various places. In this way we create a fair amount of empty spaces -or atriums, which allow natural light to reach the interior of the building and contribute to the functional unity of all the levels. These open-air atriums are the reinterpretation of the urban backyard, the schoolyard and the house yard. It is a symbolic way to imprint onto the building the spatial experience of the urban landscape of contemporary Athens and the transition of the child from their home to their school and then to the city.
Our primary intention is to create a place of social interaction in which students can meet, engage in athletic activities or relax. Within this space, a young person can introspect and explore the depths of their mind and soul so that they can obtain the means necessary for discovering their talents and conquer their future.
Esperia Hotel is one of the most important buildings in the center of Athens. The hotel ceased its operation around 2010 and the need for restoration is obvious. The area in which the building is located constitutes one of the most important axes of the historic center of Athens, next to very important buildings. The new façade of the building needs to be integrated into the urban fabric.
In our proposal we seek to restore the intention of the original drawings of the building by unifying the elements of the façade into a new system. Using the elements of the existing façade, that is the grid of the balconies and the horizontal elements of the rooftop, we propose the creation of a 'filter' which highlights the particular architectural elements of the building.
On the lower floors the vertical elements are denser in order to protect the visitor from the hustle of the city and the busy street. On the top floors they become increasingly sparse, allowing unobstructed views of the city. Another element added to the filter is a green system with vertical plants alternating with the vertical elements of the façade.
The design of the hotel aims both to serve the guests staying in the rooms and to create the right conditions for hosting events and any type of gatherings.
The main restaurant is located on the 9th floor, with unobstructed views of the west side of the city and the Acropolis, while a small dining area is created on the terrace next to the rooftop swimming pool.
The site of the building is located near the industrial area and the port of Tema. This feature becomes very crucial regarding the design parameters. More specifically, there are four points of interest in the surrounding area; the main access to the plot from the Rotary avenue, the city view in the north side of the plot, the port where the new Container Tema Port Terminal is located and finally the sea view. The volumetric of the building is influenced by the two axes that connect those four points and cross through the center of the plot. In this way, the ground floor of the building follows the geometry of the city and unfolds based on the axes of the adjacent roads. Accordingly, the upper floors of the building turn towards the best views of the plot. The building is organized around a central core, the atrium, in a way that amplifies the experience of the building as well as the microclimate. The adjacent floors, all have views towards the central green area, where the sunlight and natural ventilation penetrate the interior of the building. At the same time, the louvers monitor the amount of sunlight that is accessing the indoors for the user’s optimum comfort and create an interesting façade with the various shape formations.