a standout spa at the heart of hongdae, seoul

 

at the heart of hongdae, in seoul, south korea, architecture firm chiasmus has designed the areuke spa as a stand-out structure that invites passers-by in. the concrete pyramidoid building showcases a distinctive façade with both angular and organic volumetry, as well as various cutout details. with its open, flexible, and diverse character, the building emerges as an urban art sculpture, becoming a landmark for the bustling area.

concrete pyramidoid spa by chiasmus stands out in the dense urban fabric of seoul
areuke spa emerges as a tilted pyramidoid structure

all images courtesy of chiasmus

 

local character translated into distinct concrete sculpture

 

with areuke spa, chiasmus has translated the lively character and the superposition of ideas that characterizes hongdae, into a spatial element. in compliance with the harsh right-to-light laws resulting from the high density of houses, the building adopts the shape of a tilted pyramid, taking full advantage of the limited space granted within height restrictions.

 

designed as a flagship spa establishment of a cosmetics company, the building seeks to grab the attention of passersby, drawing them in through an inviting cutout entrance. the levels were arranged in a vertical progression from public spaces at the bottom to private ones at the top. the lower levels are used for product display and skin consults, with the basement level’s large size and high ceiling making it possible to host a wide variety of events and exhibits. meanwhile, the upper levels house the personalized spa care services areas, taking shape as smaller and more intimate rooms. 

concrete pyramidoid spa by chiasmus stands out in the dense urban fabric of seoul

 

a single mass with a raw, versatile façade

 

although it may seem as the structure is wrapped in a thick layer, the building was constructed in the form of a single concrete mass. the outer load-bearing walls were made with exposed concrete, serving as both structure and envelope and giving the building a raw, stripped look. the corner of the building’s façade uses the versatility of the concrete material to replicate the curvatures of a face, while also boasting a stylish display of colors with lights placed inside grooves.

concrete pyramidoid spa by chiasmus stands out in the dense urban fabric of seoul
the corner of the building’s façade replicates the curvatures of a face

concrete pyramidoid spa with diverse cutouts stands out in the dense urban fabric of seoul
the grooves on the exterior of the structure

concrete pyramidoid spa with diverse cutouts stands out in the dense urban fabric of seoul
the diverse look of the building corresponds to the character of the area

concrete pyramidoid spa with diverse cutouts stands out in the dense urban fabric of seoul
a stylish display of colors with lights is placed inside grooves

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concrete pyramidoid spa with diverse cutouts stands out in the dense urban fabric of seoul
 
concrete pyramidoid spa with diverse cutouts stands out in the dense urban fabric of seoul
 
concrete pyramidoid spa with diverse cutouts stands out in the dense urban fabric of seoul
 

project info:

 

name: areuke spa
architects: chiasmus
location: hongdae, seoul, south korea