The assignment of this design was to design a hotel within the Santos building in Rotterdam. This building used to be a coffee warehouse.
The main problem in this design was that the Santos building has a square floorplan, letting very little light into the center of the builing. This is specifically a problem for a hotel, that needs to have multiple small rooms that all need daylight.
The Santos building is situated in the Katendrecht neighbourhood within Rotterdam. Historically the Katendrecht area was a bad neighbourhood. To improve the neighbourhood many projects for luxery dwelling and shopping are in development. The problem is that this way the problem will only be moved elsewhere, but not solved. The current inhabitants will not benefit from this approach.
the design question
How can a hotel be created within the Santos building that offers sufficient daylight, and that also will give something back to the existing popuation of the neighbourhood?
The concept is to combine public with private space so the public(neighbourhood) and the private(hotel guests) can both benefit. A private space is a space where one can retract. But it also is a space that can be opened up for a view. A public space is an open and spacious space. It is a place to interact but there should also be the possibility to retract in the nooks and corners. So the concept of this design is to combine this public and private and in this way, use the openness of the public space as the view of the private and, the other way around, use the closedness of the private space as the place to retract within the public space.
This design is based in the idea of combining public and private.In this design the private space will form a stairway. The public space is up, under and around this stairway. By using the shape of the stairs, light from the south can penetrate through the whole building an provide light for all the hotel rooms.