Sublimation proposes an architectural voyage through changing states of water. The project finds its driving force in its metabolic water cycle, from hot to cold, and from solid to liquid, to vapour.
This change in state is also translated through the architectural elements, both in their materiality, as well as in the openness or intimacy of each space: shared spaces are in open air scenarios, or the light protection of a translucent textile, and intimate alcoves are located within the solid wooden volumes.
The visitor enters the volume through an opening in the textile skin, where they can undress and store their belongings in the wooden shelves provided. The bather, after showering, is then invited into the semi-covered bath, where they can enjoy the different temperatures of water in different depths, while immersed in the natural setting of the Memu Meadows. Once relaxed, one can begin their escalation, travelling from translucent spaces to the intimate solid volumes lined with Japanese Cedar. These volumes alternate between vapour rooms, or saunas, and massage or relaxation rooms. The ascent culminates with an open air viewing platform which invites the visitor's gaze towards the Rekifune River, considered one of the most beautiful in Japan, and its surrounding landscape.
To feed the metabolic water cycle, both rainwater and snow, according to the seasons, are harvested by means of the vertical elements of the structure, as well as along the skin of the building. This water is collected below the building in a ground source hot water tank, from which the heated water is then recirculated throughout the building to feed the radiant floor system. The Radiant floor system allows to ensure an average temperature of between 24 to 26 degrees celsius within the building envelop. The bath water is provided through the grid, also passing through a ground source heat tank located below the building, allowing to ensure clean water for bathing. This water is channeled into to the main ground floor bathing area from one side so as to allow different gradients of temperature within the water body, enhancing the bathers experience.
The naturally grounded cocoon invites the visitor into a delicate journey of pleasure and sensation through water’s diverse states, from tickling light droplets, to caressing warm vapour, or enveloping bodies of water, the user relaxes in Sublimation.
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Climatic, energy and Water Circulation Diagrams
Section and Construction Details