The project began as a study with the German Youth Hostel Association in Bavaria into the general design of youth hostels and the development of space, in terms of room‐size requirements.
The project’s first phase entailed the modernisation of the ‘Unter Haus’, an individual hostel in Berchtesgaden, targeted at both families and business‐oriented guests. The existing room structure was opened up to facilitate higher quality rooms, each with it’s own bathroom. Reinterpreting the traditional bunk beds as integrated ‘Stapelbetten’, the space is organised into coherent zones, with just a few key interventions.
Strong bright colours contrast with the natural, regionally sourced materials, which feature quality fitting and meticulous workmanship for facades and furnishings. Built‐in furniture and integrated storage avoids the barracks‐style appearance of the typical youth hostel. Connections to the surrounding landscape are provided through large, panoramic “window boxes”, which cantilever from the façade and act as seating, table areas, viewing platforms and relaxation elements.
Particular attention was also paid to the reduction of overall energy usage resulting in a highly efficient building.