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RAL 7021 protects the renovated Lynx Mountain Resort from winter frost ― 

Greece is famous for its summer destinations by the sea, bathed in intense sunlight. However, the continental country boasts equally impressive locations, albeit with a different climate and landscape. Florina is a northern border town, in a lush forest area of outstanding beauty, where winters are harsh, and temperatures often fall deep below zero.

The Lynx Mountain Resort and Casino, recently renovated by De.Ar Architects, is on top of a hill overlooking the town, at the site once occupied by the Florina “Xenia” Hotel. The Xenia Hotels were architectural gems from the 1960ies, built in the middle of the most spectacular settings in the country to highlight their beauty with a modern sensibility and contemporary amenities. The building was constructed in the 1960ies but, between 1977 and 1988, it saw additions in length and in height that looked piecemeal. Its radical transformation was called upon to create a contemporary hospitality building, with renewed architectural structure and aesthetics.

The new design integrates the building into its lush forest environment and absorbs nature by introducing an extrovert character. The existing, single-block building, was provided with large outside frames, skylights on the roof, as well as glass canopies and pergolas on different floors; this way, natural light and greenery find their way inside, ensuring panoramic views over the town and the hill.

The new façade organization recreates a singular appearance for the entire building. A light, metal structure dresses the sides, accommodating perforated panels or glass; the thermal façade, with textures and recesses, introduces a resilient surface that protects the building from temperature drops. Earthy tones in the outside vertical surfaces, combined with the dark roof and metal structure, integrate the hotel in its environment, supplemented by the architectural lighting that adds depth in the indoor and outdoor spaces. In the entire project, emulation of nature is enhanced with the use of original textures and materials, borrowing from the forest hues.

To protect the exposed metal structure from sharp temperature drops, especially from winter frost, all components were dressed in the superdurable Interpon RAL 7021 powder coating, from the Structura Collection by AkzoNobel. The color is a fine textured, matte, dark grey, that highlights the slender, rhythmical profiles, and blends into the dark tones of the forest and the natural textures featured in the indoor and outdoor surfaces.  Their exceptional performance in difficult weather conditions guarantees that the hotel will keep its color intact for more than thirty years, according to its architectural specifications.

The design of the outdoor spaces is informed by the location, with its particular geology and climate, and the design gestures complement the building’s linearity: Linear elements, such as floor paving strips, prismatic plant boxes with hidden lighting, and canopies, organize space and create landmarks, both in the snowy winter landscape and at spring. New vegetation “colonizes” the project, creating a continuum with the forest ecosystem, connecting the space to the shifting image of the landscape during the seasons. The existing tall trees are preserved, and special attention is given to the treatment of faraway views.

Project: Lynx Mountain Resort

AkzoNobel Powder used: YL321F – RAL 7021 Structura, Interpon D2525

Photography: Yiorgos Kordakis