Lützow 7 design park at luxurious thermal spa resort in Germany
At the health resort spa in Bad Essen, which is near the village centre, there exists a small health resort park located on the hillside of a vastly wooded mountain range, the Wiehengebirge. The attractive scenery and the picturesque locality present diversified possibilities for recuperation and relaxation. Directly near the health resort, a spring swimming-pool and various clinics provide various offers for the healing of different ailments. Within the scope of the State Horticultural Exhibition Bad Essen 2010, the health resort park was created in 2009/ 2010 with the Sole Arena as its centrepiece in which valuable stock of trees at the edge of the wood was incorporated in the new site concept.
With a history of thermal springs in Bad Essen, the idea of a salt works house, the Sole Arena, was conceived as an attraction for the area. For over 500 years, salt works facilities were historically responsible for the production of salt. In 1900, it was recognised that because of the salt works, the aerosols in the surrounding salty air could be used as a valuable treatment of respiratory diseases. In contrast to the orientation solely of salt production and historical construction methods, the Sole Arena in Bad Essen offers rather a design vocabulary and organisation which is oriented with the aspects of pleasant sojourn and healing.
The sole/salt water is sprinkled down 6 m high evaporation walls of the packed brushwood enclosed interior, which is open to the sky. This interior rotunda is equipped with a fountain and seating. At the 'Sole Basin', a fine fog, in addition to the salt, is augmented with the healing aerosols of stone pines. Then the fog is evaporated through nozzles. A sole spring bubbles in the sole basin. In the building's interior, the water on the skin is suddenly perceived, tasted on the lips, is breathed, touched and can be scooped up.
The Sole Arena is constructed solely from wood, according to the historical models of the past. A half-timbered construction (latticework structure) filled with brushwood (black thorn) serves as a vaporisation surface (approx. 540 m²). Through the salt evaporation process, the salinity concentration of the on-site underground Sole rises by approx. 25%. Through the vaporization, the resulting quality of the air directly at the building can be compared with that of the sea.
The Sole Arena is used as a contemplative place of tranquillity, relaxation and meditation. The interior can be accessed by three openings, whose form is derived directly from the structure's floor plan. In addition, other "windows" offer views into the interior space as well out to the landscape. Illuminated in the darkness at night, the fog coming up from the rotunda lends a virtually mystical atmosphere to the health resort, creating a special place.