Prepare to dive into three examples of Danish-designed floating architecture, from a sea bath to container student housing in Copenhagen’s inner harbour. Cool, fluctuating functionality and fine details all characterise these top-tier projects from some of Denmark’s finest architects.
Kastrup Sea Bath
Designed by White Arkitekter, Kastrup Sea Bath is an open-air sea bath placed near the Copenhagen island of Amager, near Amager Beach Park. The circular construction, gradually elevating above the surface of the sea and ending in a 5 m diving platform, comprises a platform with a 870 m2 wooden deck. All of this is at the disposable of visitors to the sea bath.
Conceived as a sculptural dynamic form, the sea bath can be seen from the beach, the sea and the air, while its silhouette gradually changes in appearance as the viewer moves around it. In addition to functioning as a shelter from the wind, the circular shape also creates a concentrated interior. Opening up towards the land to connect to the beach and to invite visitors inside, there is nothing private or exclusive about the sea bath. Rather, it is a facility open to everyone, free to use and open at all times.
Along with a sculptural form in daylight, the lighting at Kastrup Sea Bath, besides being functional and providing a safer environment for visitors, emphasises the architectural design to offer a dramatic experience at night.
Kastrup Sea Bath received an honourable mention at the Architectural Review Awards for Emerging Architecture 2006 and was nominated for the Mies van der Rohe Prize 2006. It was also selected for the biennial travelling exhibition.
A Copenhagen Houseboat
This houseboat is inhabited by its designer and builder Laust Nørgaard and his partner Lisbeth Juul. Positioned near the city, but far away from the hectic city centre, the houseboat offers magnificent views over the Copenhagen skyline. A hideaway. A houseboat for two. A home.
Placed in the centre of the houseboat, the Copenhagen water home offers a premium kitchen from the Danish interior brand Vipp. Boasting a total of 80 m2, the houseboat features two bedrooms and floor-to-ceiling sliding doors that provide generous views of the water. Apart from the stunning views, the houseboat has been finished with a dark-stained wood exterior.
Laust Nørgaard and Lisbeth Juul used to live in a houseboat when they were younger, so when their daughter left for university, they felt it was time to leave their city apartment and go back to living on the water.
The Urban Rigger is world-renowned Danish architect Bjarke Ingels’ affordable student housing project in Copenhagen’s inner harbour. Designed as a unique, patented and floating CO2 neutral property, the Urban Rigger is a flexible and mobile housing platform totalling 680 m2.
It comprises 300 m2 of housing with a total of 12 residences ranging from 23 m2 to 27 m2, a 160 m2 communal green courtyard, a kayak landing area, a bathing platform, a BBQ area, as well as a 65 m2 communal roof terrace. Downstairs, below sea level, the 230 m2 pontoon (basement) comprises 12 storage rooms, a technical room and a fully automated communal laundry.
Using building principles for connectivity has resulted in unprecedented flexibility in the floating elements. Bjarke Ingels has designed a concept that can easily be assembled in floating apartment blocks of varying sizes as needed and desired.