Award-winning Danish architectural firm 3XN offers more than three decades of experience in designing and building innovative and human-focused architecture. Founded in 1986, the firm quickly became known for creating buildings of substance with compelling aesthetics supported by a strong theoretical foundation. The firm advances Scandinavian traditions of clarity and generosity in architecture and translates them for a global audience.
3XN projects are grounded in ongoing research into how buildings reflect and influence human behavior and the environment. This results in innovative solutions to increasingly complex contemporary challenges.
Sustainability-driven green think tank of 3XN specializing in a circular design, behavior design, and digital design. The mission is to rethink and redesign the challenges of today into solutions for a sustainable tomorrow. The method is practice-focused interdisciplinary research applying the latest knowledge on materials, behavior, and technologies to the studio’s architecture.
Among the firm’s most high-profile projects are Olympic House – the International Olympic Committee (IOC) headquarters in Lausanne (Switzerland); the new Fish Market and Quay Quarter Tower in Sydney (Australia); and Royal Arena and The Blue Planet National Aquarium in Copenhagen (Denmark). Headquartered in Copenhagen, 3XN also maintains offices in Stockholm, New York, Sydney, and London.
Hotel Green Solution House is situated on the Danish island of Bornholm and functions primarily as a hotel and meeting place. Green Solution House also serves as a showcase for sustainable and climate-friendly building solutions and is part of the Bornholm hotel company Bornholm Hotels.
Hotel Green Solution House (Hotel GSH) is located in Rønne on the Danish island of Bornholm, a popular tourist destination. In September 2021 it will open a new wing with 24 rooms, a conference room, and a roof spa – all built, clad, and insulated using wooden materials. The new wing is designed by 3XN and GXN.
Built, clad, and insulated with wood, a material that naturally absorbs CO2, Hotel GSH’s new hotel wing is expected to provide a positive climate footprint when built – something that has not been seen in a commercial building in Denmark before.
“It is a dream to work with a developer who is completely uncompromising when it comes to sustainability and circular economy. This hotel will not look like others in Denmark, and sustainability will be a central part of the experience. Through the project, we have collaborated with local companies, from craftsmen to material producers, who have all embraced the ambition to build completely climate-friendly, and who are helping to show the way for the rest of the country”, says Lasse Lind, architect, and partner in GXN.
Wood shows the sustainable way forward
Despite the COVID-19 crisis that has hit the hotel industry hard, Hotel GSH’s Director Trine Richter expects a continuous flow of Danish companies and tourists to Bornholm for business and pleasure. At the same time, she hopes to show the way forward towards designing and using building materials other than steel and concrete, which are the primary materials used for construction today.
“Even though the hotel industry is having a hard time right now, we are full of expectation that the Danes will continue to spend their holidays in Denmark, and that companies will continue to demand meetings and conferences with a sustainable set-up. We are excited about the prospect of setting new standards for Danish commercial construction with this new climate-positive building, where the load-bearing structure will be made from wood. Everyone talks about it – we build it,” says Trine Richter, Director, Hotel GSH.
Upcycled materials used for decoration and well-being
Besides being all wood, the new hotel wing excels by upcycling waste products created from the offcut construction for the furniture and surfaces, while debris from local granite quarries in Bornholm is used for decoration in the conference room. The stone also helps to regulate the temperature in the conference room, as granite naturally stores heat and cold.
Furthermore, the building an all naturally ventilated via skylight windows and open areas, which eliminates the need for mechanical solutions. One of the hallmarks of the new building is that all the components are designed for reuse with reversible joints and will not end up as demolition waste as with conventional construction projects.
According to the International Environment Agency, the construction industry accounts for about 40 percent of the world’s CO2 emissions. Steel and concrete pose a great burden on the environment and are responsible for a total of 16 percent of the world’s CO2 emissions.
“I hope that this project can help to show others the potential of wood construction. If we want to be serious about achieving our climate goals, the construction industry needs to think and act differently, and therefore there is a great need for projects like this”, adds Lasse Lind. Hotel GSH opened in 2015 and was also designed by Danish architects 3XN and their green think tank GXN. Construction of the new hotel wing at Hotel GSH will begin in autumn 2020 and is scheduled to be completed in September 2021. The wing will consist of a total of 24 new rooms, a new conference room, and a roof spa.