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Hotel Histrion

Portorož, Slovenia
1 of 9baam

Yugoslavia received a huge loan from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development for a hotel Bernardin (today Histrion). This was the first major hotel not designed by Edo Mihevc, which was otherwise the author of most of the hotel architecture of Portorož. The students helped Mihevc to prepare a conceptual design, with which he applied for the Bernardin project, but did not convince the strict international tender commission. The opportunity was given to the American Architects Collaborative TAC from Cambridge, Boston, led by Perry King Neubauer.

Hotel Bernardin

The Bernardin Hotel was transparent through its ground floor and allowed a view through to the sea. In total, the hotel area measures 9700 m2, and is with 757 rooms the largest hotel complex in Slovenia. At that time it ensured a top standard of hotel infrastructure and comfort and Austrian tourist destinations boasted and invited tourists with advertising signs saying that the hotel has rooms with hot water. After Tito's death, when many problems began in Yugoslavia, the rooms were rent for guests at low prices. With such prices the loan couldn't be repaid.

Renovation of Histrion

The recurring facade of the Histrion Hotel symbolizes a cruise ship. The salt basins of the water complex connect both sides of the sea. The hotel didn't't lost its modernist character over time. The renovation started with a replacement of white-gray instead of the previous terra rossa red color. Visible concrete, due to energy rehabilitation and the sharp impact of the sea, could not be restored. Blinds in blue-green shades, which are always randomly lowered, give the facade the appropriate dynamics.

The pool area emphasizes the position of the hotel in the sea. The ceiling is, with its refracted form, an abstraction of the waves of the sea. The reflex in the ceiling creates a feeling of immersion in water and reflects the color of the pools and the sea. The entire renovation approached the original modernist hotel and refreshed the technically-functional hotel.