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Norway's remote Hotel Finse 1222 undergoes subtle update by Snøhetta


Interiors of bedroom set in gable of Norway's Hotel Finse 1222 designed by Snøhetta

Architecture firm Snøhetta has carried out a sensitive refurbishment of this hotel in Finse, a tiny mountain village in Norway that can only be reached by railway.

Built in the shadow of Norway’s Hardangerjøkulen glacier, Hotel Finse 1222 sits 1,222 metres above sea level and started life as a humble lodge for railroad workers before becoming a fully-fledged hotel in 1909.

Exterior of Norway's Hotel Finse 1222
Hotel Finse 1222 is located in a tiny Norwegian mountain village

Over the decades, the establishment attracted a steady stream of visitors but its interiors grew tired.

When Snøhetta was tasked with bringing the hotel up to date, the firm steered away from major structural changes and instead settled for making a few aesthetic tweaks.

Red-tinged Interiors of hotel lobby designed by Snøhetta
Snøhetta introduced colour to the hotel’s reception and lounge

“We wanted to ensure we preserved the historical qualities of the place by attentively adjusting and upgrading the existing building mass, only adding new elements where it was absolutely needed,” said Heidi Pettersvold Nygaard, senior architect at the firm.

“Bringing back to life the long and diverse history of Finse’s heydays was a delight, ensuring that also new visitors could become aware of this completely unique nature and hotel experience.”

Dining room of Hotel Finse 1222 hotel with floral wallpaper and wooden furniture
Floral-print William Morris wallpaper covers surfaces in the dining room

The firm wanted to foster a “warm and hearty” ambience in the hotel’s reception and lounge area so that arriving guests feel instantly at ease.

Here, surfaces are painted tangerine orange while the soft furnishings are different hues of red.

Just beyond the lounge, Snøhetta designed a new wooden terrace to match the building’s original carpentry.

Hotel dining room by Snøhetta with floral wallpaper a wooden furniture
The room’s original ceiling was preserved

In the dining room, floral William Morris wallpaper now blankets the walls. This is a nod to some long-forgotten furnishings Snøhetta found in the hotel’s attic that were upholstered in a similar fabric by the prominent British textile designer.

The room’s decorative plaster ceiling was preserved and complemented with ornate brass-stemmed lamps, which the studio says are historically appropriate.

Photographs of famous guests that have passed through the hotel are mounted on the walls, including portraits of Prince Charles and Norwegian figure skater Sonia Hennie.

A moodier atmosphere reigns in the hotel’s lounge, where surfaces are rendered in a deep shade of indigo to amplify the dazzling blueish light of Finse’s winter sunsets.

Guests can sit back and observe the day drawing to a close on the room’s plump blue sofas or bench seats lined with furry throws.

Blue lounge of Hotel Finse 1222 with blue couches
The hotel’s lounge is filled with shades of blue

The most dramatic intervention made by Snøhetta as part of the refurbishment involved elevating the hotel’s roof to make way for two more guest suites beneath its peak.

Both suites come complete with expansive floor-to-ceiling windows that offer uninterrupted views of the surrounding landscape. Even the bathtubs are positioned to overlook nearby mountain Lille Finsenut.

Draped over the beds are bespoke woollen throws depicting an abstract image of the Hardangerjøkulen glacier.

Interiors of bedroom set in gable of Norway's Hotel Finse 1222 designed by Snøhetta
Two new guest suites were created beneath the hotel’s roof

Snøhetta currently has a number of projects in the works.

Earlier this month, the firm released plans to extend the Hopkins Centre for the Arts at Dartmouth. It is also erecting a library in Beijing that will feature a “forest” of pillars on its interior.

The post Norway's remote Hotel Finse 1222 undergoes subtle update by Snøhetta appeared first on Dezeen.


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