The Underwater Design Trend:
For a long time, architects have focused on the expansion of buildings upwards, in the attempt to reach new heights with towering skyscrapers. But recently, several projects across the globe have tried to explore below the depths of land, trading their views of a city skyline for those of marine life. Although several under water attractions have already been built in places such as the Maldives and Fiji, Europe’s first underwater restaurant located in Lindesnes, Norway has recently opened, offering an opportunity to see a part of the word rarely seen without the proper scuba gear.
The 3,230 square foot restaurant named “Under”, offers a 40-person below sea level dining room. “A 36-foot-wide window gives guests a water view, which varies based on the season and time of day.” The building also doubles as a marine biology station that is capable of both live and digital observation of the site’s unique sea life. "Researchers have already discovered species of jellyfish that they did not know existed in the area, through the restaurant window." The building’s concrete shell was designed to become a part of its environment, acting as an artificial reef for animals such as mollusks. The head chef, Nicolai Ellitsgaard, has even gone as far as designing a sustainable menu with input from the station’s marine biologists. Considering factors such as how and when to harvest the fish and seafood he serves his guests.
Although the architecture firm who designed Under does not plan on building anymore submerged structures anytime soon, the firm’s learnings will be useful for other designers looking to dive in to underwater design. As cities become more crowded, “subaquatic design offers a new frontier for developers and architects to explore.”
For more information on Europe’s first underwater restaurant, visit: https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/turning-to-underwater-design
For more information on Allume Architects and to see what we’ve been up to, visit: http://allumearchitects.com/