text project list
description refuge and restaurant on a lake, international competition entry
category public, hospitality
location Graz, Austria
built area 1.230 m²
design team

Stephan Buerger, Demetra Katsota, Marios Botis, Savvas Kakalis


Taras Diachun

client GBG Gebäude- und Baumanagement Graz GmbH
design year 2020

The new restaurant and cafe building in an attractive natural surrounding on lake Thaler in the greater vicinity of Graz, AT is designed to become a popular all year long destination easily reachable by bike and on foot.

The proposed scheme is initiated by the re-design of the lake’s shoreline and its dam in order to establish a new public plateau. This new panorama level is integrated with the existing biking and footpath network and the natural topography. Generous terraces and cascading decks allow for various outdoor activities and access to the waterbody.

The building itself is designed as a refuge within the landscape and as a vessel for the enjoyment of the natural surroundings. Its architecture is direct, contemporary and responsive to the rural context devoid of nostalgic rhetoric. The building presents itself as a delicately folded cantilevering roof in the landscape. The rectilinear 58m long pitched roof volume bridges the northern bay of the lake and shelters below the shadow of the low-lying eave a programmatic recluse. In plan, in-between three offset solid enclosures, two voids -the entrance and the café’s sitting area- allow for the seamless connection to the outside. A narrow 13m long bar fronting the kitchen enclosure, connects the entrance and the café sitting area opening fully, through its retractable glazing, onto the cascading plateau and the spectacular views towards the lake. The double height sitting area is easily divisible with a movable curtain while the open fireplace accentuates the sense of refuge. Through the entrance, a main staircase connects the upper and lower levels of the building. The upper level functions as an independent hostel offering 8 double bedroom units while the lower level accommodates all required by the brief facilities for biking, hiking, boating, ice skating, as well as storage and mechanical areas.

The proposal’s material expression responds to clear environmental considerations. The external base as well as the ground floor volumes are prescribed in exposed concrete, in contrast to the protected timber surfaces of the first-floor slab and the exposed roof structure. For the roofing, the anodized aluminium panels above, in combination with the expressed structural rhythm of the timber rafters below will reflect the ever changing colour nuances of the surrounding landscape.

Title Year Type Locaction Country
RADISSON RESORT SKIATHOS 2020 hospitality Skiathos
PENINSULA 2020 residential, hospitality Paros Greece
VILLAS A 2019 residential, hospitality Costa Navarino ,  Messinia Greece
OKZT HUB 2018 offices Klagenfurt Austria
RESTAURANT THALERSEE 2020 public, hospitality Graz Austria
VILLAS B 2019 residential, hospitality Costa Navarino ,  Messinia Greece
MAYRHOFEN STATION 2018 public Mayrhofen Austria
HOUSES A·2 2014 residential, hospitality Paros Greece
FERANT GARDEN APARTMENT 2017 residential Ljubljana Slovenia
CING LABORATORY BUILDING 2018 public Nicosia Cyprus
STUDENT STUDIOS PATRAS 2007 residential Patras Greece
PX SIX THRESHOLDS 2012 public Athens Greece
HOUSE E 2016 residential Artemida Greece
HOUSE L 2016 residential, research Antiparos Greece
LANDHOTEL SILVESTAR 2016 commercial, residential, hospitality Motovun Croatia
AS IF 2014 residential, research Mykonos Greece
HOUSE B 2014 residential Crete Greece
UNIVERSITY LIBRARY GRAZ 2015 public Graz Austria
HOUSE T 2016 residential Antiparos Greece
HOUSE H 2012 residential Corfu Greece
KURA CULTURAL CENTRE 2013 public Mingachevir Azerbaijan
THREE SPACES 2013 exhibition Athens Greece
KUBAN RIVERSIDE HOTEL 2013 commercial, hospitality Krasnodar Russia
STUDENT STUDIOS THESSALONIKI 2017 residential Thessaloniki Greece
HOUSE A+B 2008 residential Paros Greece
COOP BANK HEADQUARTERS 2012 commercial Nicosia Cyprus
PX THREE CORNERS 2012 public Athens Greece
AUSTRIAN AMBASSADOR RESIDENCE 2013 residential Athens Greece
COASTAL DOMAINS 2017 exhibition Athens Greece
ANNENHEIM CUBES 2012 residential, hospitality Treffen Austria
FERLACH TECHNICAL SCHOOL 2016 public Ferlach Austria
CASPIAN SEA RESORT 2012 public, residential, masterplan, hospitality Baku Azerbaijan
6 VOIDS: PXATHENS 2012 exhibition Venice Italy
BELGIAN EMBASSY 2009 public Athens Greece
CAUCASUS CONFERENCE CENTRE 2012 public Qabala Azerbaijan
GERMAN SCHOOL ATHENS 2017 public Athens Greece
LAKE APARTMENTS 2012 residential Bodensdorf Austria
PX ATHENS 2012 public, masterplan Athens Greece
LARNACA AGORA 2011 public Larnaca Cyprus
NOVARA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL 2018 public Vienna Austria
OFFICE A 2010 commercial Athens Greece
HBWBC SCHOOL 2010 public Vienna Austria
DASOUPOLI HIGH SCHOOL 2010 public Nicosia Cyprus
RATHAUSPARK 2009 public Vienna Austria
TOWNHOUSE K 2009 residential Nafplion Greece
VILLA W1 2008 residential Corfu Greece
HELLENIC PARLIAMENT 2008 research Athens Greece
KYRIAZI DEVELOPMENT 2008 commercial, residential Athens Greece
GERMAN DEVELOPMENT 2008 masterplan Sofia Bulgaria
SUPERSTORE V 2008 commercial Athens Greece
MELINA PAVILION 2007 exhibition Athens Greece
GLEISDORF DEVELOPMENT 2007 residential Gleisdorf Austria
HELEXPO PAVILION 2007 exhibition Thessaloniki Greece
VILLA S 2006 residential Vienna Austria
VERTICAL ATTICA 2006 masterplan, research Attica Greece
SCHLOSSMUSEUM 2006 public Linz Austria
EXHIBITION 102x 2006 exhibition Athens Greece
HOUSE M 2004 residential Athens Greece
SKYWALK BRIDGE 2004 public Vienna Austria
HELLENIKON PARK 2004 masterplan Athens Greece
DARNITSA DEVELOPMENT 2003 commercial Kiev Ukraine
TRANSITIONAL INTERSTICES 2003 residential Ano Liosia Greece