The northern Black Forest is characterised by its very own building culture that has grown over centuries. The feudal farmers developed a simple language of construction and form that followed their needs and protected the buildings even in difficult weather conditions, for example with high snow loads. This way of building was sustainable even before the word existed. It is characterised by locally available materials: Due to the weather and high snow loads, the historic buildings of the region have steep roof pitches and only minimal roof overhangs. This building typology still characterises the landscape and can be found on simple hay sheds as well as on farmhouses and commercial buildings.
In this spirit, six two-storey chalets, each with two bedrooms, were created for the extensive grounds of the 5-star Engel Obertal wellness hotel in Baiersbronn. Within the infrastructure of a 5-star wellness hotel, they allow for a more individual stay for families or groups. Wood played an essential role in the design of these chalets. By using silver fir for the façade, it was possible to clearly locate the new buildings in the Black Forest through the material itself. The supporting structure of the chalets consists of three layers of solid cross-laminated timber, which is left pure and visible in the interior. There were several reasons for this type of construction: on the one hand, solid timber walls regulate the room humidity in a natural way and also have an antibacterial effect - which means they provide a pleasant and healthy room and air climate in summer and winter. Furthermore, wood creates a natural feeling of space; this is another reason why the load-bearing structures in the interior were left visible. In this way, the sustainable material wood can be experienced with many senses: You can not only see it, but also touch and smell it.
A new central kitchen with delivery and rooms for technical supplies has also been built to cater for the entire hotel complex. This extension - located in the entrance area of the complex - differs noticeably from the existing buildings. In a public area, guests can watch the cooks preparing the food and enjoy the Black Forest panorama at the same time.