Sparkling lakes, enchanted forests and impressive mountain landscapes adorn Austria’s southern province of Carinthia. Just below the summit of Gerlitze Alpe at 1,769 metres above sea level lies the exclusive Mountain Resort Feuerberg. To enable the resort’s guests to relax and feel good all around, it was down to the architect Ronacher to consider everything down to the tiniest detail – including in the building constructed in 2019, a light-drenched bathing house. Choosing the right window structure played a decisive role when it came to comfort in the new wellness temple: It had already been decided during the planning stage to go for the triple-glazed unit CLIMATOP XN – fitted with the warm edge spacer bar SWISSPACER ULTIMATE, which has a very positive impact on energy efficiency and indoor comfort.
Since its opening in 2007, Mountain Resort Feuerberg has received numerous awards and excellence certificates. It was recently voted one of the Top 10 wellness hotels in Austria by the Relax Guide 2020, and rightly so: The premium location within striking distance of hiking trails and ski slopes, the culinary offering and the extensive wellness programme make Mountain Resort Feuerberg one of the top destinations for wellness and indulgence in Austria. The resort’s impressive alpine spa covers an area of 4,500 square metres. There are twelve pools and a solar-heated alpine meadow lake, sixteen relaxation rooms, eleven saunas and a water slide.
The central design element of the new bathing house is an elliptically shaped swimming pool with a circular dome structure made from wood. Together with the therapy facility, it connects to the resort’s existing buildings. The entire architecture thus becomes a semicircle that nestles back into the slope. At the front it traps the sun and opens up the panoramic view of the mountains. At the same time, this shape ensures sufficient protection against wind and weather in the courtyard.
“In each of the 15 construction phases that we have been able to realise for the Hotel Feuerberg in recent years, wood plays a supporting role in the truest sense of the word,” says the architect Dr Herwig Ronacher. He and his architecture firm stand for ecological construction, energy efficiency and specifically for building with wood. When it comes to energy-efficient construction, the company has implemented numerous structures and completed two research projects, one of which focused on energy-efficient swimming pools made from wood. “Building in an energy-efficient manner is very important for indoor pools. The basic shape of the ellipse and the wooden dome meet this need, as they give the building a very favourable ratio of volume to surface area,” explains Ronacher.
Mountain Resort Feuerberg was one of the most challenging projects to have been designed and implemented by the architecture firm. That was mainly because of the extraordinarily high standards specified for it. The aim was therefore to go for maximum quality in every detail. A good example of this are the warm edge spacer bars from SWISSPACER, which were used in the insulating glass elements from Saint-Gobain Glassolutions Nitrasklo in the most recent phase of construction. SWISSPACER spacer bars consist of a highly insulating plastic composite material which minimises the loss of heat. They therefore prevent cold bridges and heat loss in the area around the edge of the panes of insulating glass – which prevents heat entering the building’s interior in summer and keeps the cold out in winter. Condensation, mould and the health problems these cause don’t stand a chance. Although at first glance they represent a barely perceptible detail in the overall planning, the spacer bars are essential for saving energy as well as for pleasant temperatures inside Mountain Resort Feuerberg.
Further information is available at www.swisspacer.com.