christ & gantenbein completes lindt's 'home of chocolate' in switzerland

christ & gantenbein completes lindt's 'home of chocolate' in switzerland

christ & gantenbein has added the ‘lindt home of chocolate’ to the swiss company’s headquarters on the outskirts of zurich. the flagship project, which hopes to become one of switzerland’s most visited buildings, serves as a striking and contemporary counterweight to the rest of the site, which includes a factory, warehouses, and offices. the new structure, described as a multi-functional experiential space, features a user-focused, mixed-use program that hopes to redefine civic architecture.

christ gantenbein lindt
image © walter mair (also main image)



designed by christ & gantenbein, the project parallels the logic, history, and urban structure of lindt & sprüngli’s factory site. conceived as an industrial box that engages with the materiality of the surrounding factory buildings, the exterior consists primarily of red brick. the building’s south east corner has been removed to result in a public square that serves as its entrance. this part of the façade is clad with white, glazed brick and is adorned with golden letters.

christ gantenbein lindt
image © walter mair



the project’s interior is organized around a 64 meter-long (210 ft) atrium that contains a series of round load-bearing pillars and walls. with spiraling staircases and cascading walkways, the building’s dynamic interior contrasts its more reserved exterior. the program includes an interactive, immersive exhibition about chocolate, a research and development facility for future chocolate recipes, a production plant, a chocolate shop, a café, and offices. the center of the void features a golden chocolate fountain that was developed by atelier brückner.

christ gantenbein lindt
image © walter mair



‘almost reaching an ancient roman scale, we’ve created an exaggeration of industrial production with a certain tension; a tension that gives a strong presence to the architecturally distinct elements that define the interior, bridging the substantial gap between a commercial ambiance and classical grandeur,’ says emanuel christ, founding partner of christ & gantenbein. ‘to celebrate the experience of chocolate in many ways, we’ve scripted the lindt home of chocolate’s interior as a space that orchestrates the movement of people.’

christ gantenbein lindt
image © walter mair



‘the supporting structure in the interior essentially consists of an in-situ concrete skeleton,’ adds jürg conzett, structural engineer for the lindt home of chocolate. ‘in the area of the atrium, the load- bearing parts become multifunctional elements.thus, mushroom pillars mutate into cantilevered balconies, and hollow columns contain elevators as well as zones for pipes to ascend. generously dimensioned spiral staircases also circle around these vertical support elements. the unusually large dimensions of the supporting structure create a unique scale and contribute to the extraordinary spatial effect of this building.’


image © walter mair


the headquarters of lindt & sprüngli, the swiss chocolatier that was founded in 1845, are located near lake zurich on the outskirts of switzerland’s most populous city. the project is financed and operated by the lindt chocolate competence foundation, an organization that aims to sustain, cultivate and promote switzerland’s long-term standing as a business location for chocolate and further strengthen its chocolate-making expertise.

christ & gantenbein completes lindt's 'home of chocolate' in switzerland
image © walter mair

christ & gantenbein completes lindt's 'home of chocolate' in switzerland
image © stefano graziani

christ & gantenbein completes lindt's 'home of chocolate' in switzerland
image © raphael alù



project info:


location: kilchberg, switzerland
client: lindt chocolate competence foundation
year: 2014 – 2020
program: culture, laboratory, museum, office, retail
GFA: 21,540 sqm (231,855 sqf)
length: 93 m (305 ft)
width: 45 m (148 ft)
height: 21 m (69 ft)


christ & gantenbein team —
founding partners: emanuel christ, christoph gantenbein
partner: mona farag
project leaders: anna flückiger, astrid kühn, tabea lachenmann
christ & gantenbein architects: javier bressel, ana sofia costa guerra, eileen davis, szabolcs egyed, florian kaiser, kyrill keller, daan koch, andrew mackintosh, stephanie müller, catia polido, robert schiemann, anne katharina schulze, guido tesio, leandro villalba, jean wagner, leonie welling, christina wendler

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