Design by Fokkema & Partners brings clarity and coherence to Hotelschool

With a rational approach, Fokkema & Partners Architecten has transformed the building of the Hotel School The Hague into a contemporary learning environment. The building’s energy label has been upgraded thanks to, among other things, a new installation and a new facade.

Hotelschool The Hague, an internationally leading educator for the hospitality sector, is located in a building complex that was created in the second half of the last century. The main building was completed in 1966 following a pragmatic modernist design by Lucas & Niemeyer. Two extensions were added in the 1990s.

Due to the additions, the original building has lost its clear structure. Fokkema & Partners has seized the renovation, which was necessary to improve the energy management of the building, to create a new coherence. The office has also created space for contemporary educational concepts.

Outhouse with entrance
Based on an analysis of the building, the architectural firm concluded that there were many opportunities to achieve a transparent user experience throughout the building. To release the building’s potential, Fokkema & Partners first moved the entrance to one of the (former) outbuildings. A new outbuilding has been built for this purpose.

With its overall canopy and an adjacent new school yard, this new outbuilding forms a natural connection with the urban structure. The relocation of the entrance and the new outbuilding means a subtle change to the Hotel School’s appearance in relation to the surrounding park and streetscape.

The new structure is a subtle echo of the original mid-1960s architecture, with its split levels, sunken gallery and elegantly dimensioned window design, Fokkema & Partners explains. The new design comes in contrasting colours; a new color scheme for the exterior of the existing building emphasizes the rhythm.

Space and daylight
To do justice to the Hotel School’s character, students, teachers and visitors will now receive a generous welcome on arrival. This is followed by spacious and interconnected user lanes throughout the building. Cavities and additional daylight provide daylight in the interior; service areas are also placed in a well-considered way for this purpose.

The relocation of the entrance has also made it possible to bring daylight into the basement. With a large empty space, the half-sunk basement – ​​previously a dark archive room – has been transformed into an attractive meeting center and library.

The architectural firm has introduced a stack of smaller cavities in the high-rise buildings. The office and education wings are connected via a split level. Study zones have been added adjacent to the void, so that the former barrier between students and lecturers has actually become the meeting room.

Clear structure
Fokkema & Partners has realized a more efficient layout with cavities, corridors and the removal of walls. In addition, space has been created for extra study and work spaces with a spacious feel.

The clear floor plans show the structure of the building. Glass sections with steel frames are placed between columns and beams; the different levels of transparency are geared to the function of the spaces behind.

The energy label has improved from level G to A. This has been achieved with a new facade with triple glazing, a balanced ventilation concept with heat exchanger system and extra roof and wall insulation.

The building is also equipped with a green roof, solar panels, water-saving toilets and faucets and a smart building system. The latter includes presence detection for light control and measurement of CO2levels and humidity.

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