A jewel in Berlin’s crown

Kerry Boettcher
Friday 27 Mar 2015

Daniel Libeskind develops his first apartment building in Berlin

The Sapphire Building, Daniel Libeskind’s first residential apartment building in Germany, bears the characteristic rough edges of his work, making the structure resemble a cut gem. The project will comprise 73 apartment and is due to be completed by the end of 2016.

Libeskind has said that he named the building not only to reflect its crystalline structure, but as an allegory for the present state of Berlin. He says: “It’s all about its holistic character: the light of the sapphire, and simultaneously its softness. But a sapphire is also rough, it is hard, it is durable, it is rugged, it is resilient due to the very nature of its material. All of these are character traits shared by Berlin itself and its residents.”

Each of the apartments will be unique, ranging from 36 to 169 sq m two to four bedroom apartments, with at least one wall displaying Libeskind’s sculptural style of construction. 

Environmental sustainability has been placed at the heart of the project. The shimmering ceramic façade will improve the carbon footprint of the building. The architect explains: This sort of tile has never been produced before, and is entirely environmentally friendly. It helps the building to balance its emission of greenhouse gases. What makes the new material special is not just its self-cleaning effect but also the fact that it produces oxygen by converting carbon dioxide.”

This building is a true architectural gem. 

Kerry Boettcher

News Editor

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