4 April 2023

Smili chisel (in English): a tool with a long metal blade that has a sharp edge for cutting, wood, stone, etc.
≈ συνώνυμα: καλέμι, κοπίδι, σκαρπέλο

Our Architectural office undertook the completion and restoration of a seven-storey building located at the junction of Achilleos and Thermopylon Streets, right at the entrance gate of the city of Athens. The building had remained in the structural stage since the late 1970's. An envelope that has gone through serious deterioration as a result of the 5 decades of abandonment and structural problems due to the hasty way of the original concreting. 

Initially we were asked to study the way of complete structural restoration and the harmonization of the shell with the current seismic armouring standards. The building needs strengthening in all its structural elements.

At the same time, we were commissioned to transform it into an elegant luxury hotel unit, consisting of 12 unique suites that can accommodate from 2 to 4 people each, while on the ground floor an extroverted bar - restaurant is created that serves both the hotel and the wider neighborhood.

The particular shape of the property, as well as the need for introspection due to its location, led the architectural team to a geometric composition of simplifying the complex corners of the shell and creating semi-outdoor spaces to accompany the interior layout. The goal was to achieve as much privacy as possible and sound protection from the bustling avenues that surround the property. Linear planting elements along the exoskeletons soften the visual harshness of the surroundings, while we used targeted artificial lighting to highlight the exterior sculpture accentuates the recesses, mostly of tabular floorplan.

An external insulation coverage, imitating a natural stone effect, made by STO Company, was chosen for the entire building, using a self-cleaning paint that is at the same time resistant to intense urban pollution, contributing to the longevity of the façade with minimum maintenance costs. The extensive reinforcements of the load-bearing structure are hidden behind the sculptural façade in order to be indistinguishable even to the experienced eye, while the sharp-edged cut-outs aim to reduce the visual volume of the overall shell.

Design Team:

Antonis Gavalas
Tasos Karnesis
Vania Angelopoulou
Xenia Sotiropoulou
Marissa Goula
Giorgos Mavrogiannis