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Christoph Ingenhoven reveals plans for Lanserhof Sylt as ground broken on North Sea island resort

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I think it’s important to have a little silence, a little space; time for yourself. The architecture can help with that

Construction has begun on Lanserhof Sylt, a €100m (US$118m, £88m) medical spa resort on a German island in the North Sea.

design practice Ingenhoven Architects are overseeing the creation of the 68-room project, which will be constructed on the site of a former officer's’ accommodation block on the island of Sylt.

The building, dating from the 1930s, will be transformed into the central hub of the resort, which will feature medical facilities, a spa area, a diagnostics building, indoor and outdoor salt-water pools and three holiday homes.

The design is inspired in part by the local architecture of Sylt.

“It’s a beautiful island and a very prestigious place; like the Hamptons of Germany,” Christoph Ingenhoven, the founder of the architecture firm, told CLADglobal.

“Architecturally, the special thing about the buildings on the island of Sylt is that they have big overhanging reed roofs, so I said that’s what I want to do in our design because I like the material.

"It offers a range of possibilities: it’s smooth, it’s curvy, it makes soft organic shapes possible. We’re building a huge reed roof – one of the biggest ever. It’s a challenge and we like that kind of challenge very much.”

The Lanserhof company took control of their first medical resort in Tyrol, Austria in 1998 – the Lanserhof Lans. This was restored and significantly expanded this year by Ingenhoven, who previously designed another property for the group in Tegernsee, Germany, in 2014.

Since 2012,Lanserhof has also operated a resort in a renovated post office HQ in Hamburg, and recently acquired a site in London for its first UK property.

Lanserhof Sylt is scheduled to open in 2020.

Speaking about how he approaches his designs for Lanserhof, Ingenhoven – who is interviewed in the most recent issue of our quarterly title CLADmag – said that it is “very important to really understand the concept of the medical spas and the kind of treatments you get in order to design for them”.

Ingenhoven is a regular visitor to Lanserhof, having first attended over 14 years ago to do a detox programme with a group of friends, and said that the experience has guided his design approach.

“It’s important to think about the guests and what they might want. People going through the detox experience often want a little distance from other people, they might not be feeling too sociable.

“I think it’s important to have a little silence, a little space, time for yourself. The architecture can help with that. [With past projects] we didn’t want any artificial colours or treated materials. We wanted guests to be able to trust their surroundings – if it looks like wood, it should be wood. It’s a very simple space.”

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Construction has begun on Lanserhof Sylt, a €100m (US$118m, £88m) medical spa resort on a German island in the North Sea.

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