Beachfront Facilities Building By Link Architectes Nestles Against A Hillside Near Saint-Étienne

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This beachside cafe and toilet block on the banking institutions of the Loire River close to Saint-Étienne, France, was developed by French studio Link Architectes to seem like it emerges from a hillside .

Leisure and services center by Link architectes

The Saint-Victor-sur-Loire Leisure and Services Centre is located beside a popular beach outdoors the city, close to to an inland port on the Loire River.

It supplies toilets, sheltered places, a ticket office for boat tours and two snack shops, replacing disparate and deteriorated buildings previously positioned nearer to the water.

Leisure and services center by Link architectes

Link Architectes was tasked with creating the simple construction as part of a wider refurbishment of the seaside landscape.

“At first, the client expected a series of services aligned in front of the seaside, like a constructing with only one particular facade,” the architects informed Dezeen. “But as it is at the centre of the site, we felt it was important to make the building operate in each and every route – the front, the sides, and the roof.”

Leisure and services center by Link architectes

To achieve this, the developing was embedded into a hill overlooking the beach, whilst grass was extended onto the roof to create a viewing platform – a similar approach was used by THE Architectes to partially disguise a seaside water-sports building in Saint-Hilaire-de-Riezon on the west coast of the country.


Connected story: THE Architectes conceals nautical sports activities base beneath a grassy beach dune


The snack shops and ticket workplace have been additional at either edge of the Saint-Victor-sur-Loire building to open up to the front and sides.

Leisure and services center by Link architectes

“It was essential for us that the creating felt anchored on the ground, and not just place on leading of it – like it has grown from the gorgeous landscape surrounding it,” stated the architects. “We wanted it to be a lot more than just two cafes, an office, and two toilets.”

The front of the 210-square-metre creating faces west and features three voids reduce symmetrically across its width.

The very first provides room for a snack bar, the second gives a sheltered meeting spot for strolling groups and other visitors, and the third gives a covered location for cafe seating. The sound sections amongst these voids house the toilets and ticket workplace.

Leisure and services center by Link architectes

“We utilized a balance between voids and mass to give the building a quiet high quality with virtually with classical proportions, which generates a particular variety of rhythm across the facade,” said the architects.

Leisure and services center by Link architectes

“This interaction amongst open and closed aspects is also made to make the building perform on two levels,” they additional.

“The major concrete structure offers a sound shelter anchored in the ground, and the wooden aspects open and near to generate spaces that interact with individuals, which makes the building truly feel far more usable.”

Leisure and services center by Link architectes

The only element that breaks the symmetry of the facade is a huge glazed entrance for the ticket office.

“It appears as a separate component inside the whole composition to make its presence clearer,” stated the architects. “It was component of the short to make all the functions extremely noticeable.”

Leisure and services center by Link architectes

As properly as providing providers and shelter, the creating was made to ease the visual transition from the auto park at the entrance to the seashore and esplanade on the other side.


Connected content: see a lot more beachside architecture


“At the early stages of the undertaking, we created the client realise that regardless of its tiny dimension, this constructing had the possible to act as a threshold for the total site,” mentioned the architects.

“The roof has turn out to be an inhabited space providing a viewing platform, the facade is open and porous, so it feels more like an extension of the plaza in front of it, and the creating leads seamlessly on to the beachfront esplanade.”

Leisure and services center by Link architectes

Larch plywood was used for all the timber aspects of the developing to give them a uniform look, and the concrete exterior was painted white to unite it visually with an older rescue centre in front.

“The white walls set up a dialogue, so that the new creating, the outdated creating and the plaza as a entire act as a threshold for the complete spot,” added the crew.

Other waterside amenity buildings lately published on Dezeen include three curved toilet and shower blocks designed as portion of an hard work to rejuvenate a Sydney beachfront and a steel-framed pergola covered in willow reeds for a seaside sailing school in Cádiz, Spain.

Photography is by François Maisonnasse.

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